R-1-30 and the Council a Brief Overview
Before I discuss the work session I want to review the history of the lot sizes in Highland, then R-1-30 zone and its implementation.
Highland Lot Size Info
Lots sizes of developments approved since 2014. As a point of information the estimated density of all Open Space subdivisions (this includes park land and other open space) is ~1.6 lots/acre.
|Zone||Avg. Lot Size||Median Lot Size||Avg. Density|
|R-1-20||0.48 acres |
20,835 sq. ft.
|0.46 acres |
20,167 sq. ft.
|R-1-30||0.60 acres |
25,941 sq. ft.
|0.58 acres |
25,132 sq. ft.
|0.78 acres |
34,491 sq. ft.
|0.75 acres |
32,756 sq. ft.
|0.47 acres |
25,276 sq. ft.
|0.58 acres |
20,386 sq. ft.
* This lot size data was derived by using the lot sizes of all property using pressurized irrigation where the parcel was larger than 0.10 acres and smaller than 6 acres. The data represents ~95% of all property in Highland.
Timeline of R-1-30 Actions:
- 12-Apr-2016: Planning Commission votes 6 to 0 to recommend approval of new R-1-30 zone.
- 19-Apr-2016: The city council approved a new R-1-30 zone on 4 to 1 vote (Approve: Brian Braithwaite, Tim Irwin, Dennis LeBaron, Rod Mann; Deny: Ed Dennis). Click here for my notes – see item 6).
- 19-Apr-2016: Council denies motion to approve R-1-30 zone for ~20 acre parcel of land (Approve: Ed Dennis, Dennis LeBaron; Deny: Brian Braithwaite, Tim Irwin, Rod Mann). The motion was denied primarily because this plan had not been reviewed by the planning commission. Click here for my notes – see item 7).
- 24-May-2016: Planning commission votes 4 to 1 to recommend a denial of the request to rezone a 7.25 acre parcel to R-1-30.
- 7-Jun-2016: The city council approved a request to rezone a 7.25 acre parcel from R-1-40 to R-1-30 (Approve: Ed Dennis, Tim Irwin, Dennis LeBaron, Rod Mann; Deny: Brian Braithwaite). Click here to see my notes from the meeting – Item 4.
- 24-May-2016: Planning commission votes 4 to 1 to recommend approval of an R-1-30 zone for ~20 acres parcel to be developed by Edge Homes with one stipulation (that a cul-de-sac be eliminated in favor of a connection to 6900 W.
- 7-Jun-2016: The council unanimously approved this request with the stipulation that the cul-de-sac be eliminated. Click here to see my notes from the meeting – Item 5.
- 23-Aug-2016: The Planning commission voted 5 to 1 to recommend a denial of a request to rezone 28.5 acres of land to be known as Oak Ridge Estates from R-1-40 to R-1-30.
- 6-Sep-16: The city council voted to deny a request to rezone 28.5 acres of land from R-1-40 to R-1-30 (Approve: Tim Irwin, Dennis LeBaron; Deny: Brian Braithwaite, Ed Dennis, Rod Mann). Click Here to see my notes from this meeting – Item 7.
- 25-Oct-2016: The planning commission was split on the issue of whether to make a recommendation to approve or deny a request to rezone 28.5 acres of land (Oak Ridge Estates) based on a revised development plan (the vote was 3 to 3).
- 15-Nov-2016: The council voted 3 to 2 to approve the zone change request (Approve: Ed Dennis, Tim Irwin, Dennis LeBaron; Deny: Brian Braithwaite, Rod Mann). Click Here to see my notes from this meeting – Item 3.
This joint work session between the planning commission and city council was held to help align both bodies with respect to the new R-1-30 zone and how Highland should or should not use it. About 10 residents attended the meeting as well. Most were members of the group that ran a referendum to place a decision to rezone a the 28.5 acre parcel from R-1-40 to R-1-30 on the ballot this fall. They wanted to be sure the planning commission and council understood their position and the position of the referendum signatories.
We took a 4 questions survey before and after the discussion. Note, everyone attending the work session was surveyed. During the discussion we reviewed information provided by staff (click here to view the material presented). Relevant information from the most recent city survey as well as
The before and after total vote counts were different largely because several people came late to the meeting. Few, if any, people changed their mind as a result of the discussion.
- Should density (lots/acre) or lot sizes be the primary factor in making zoning decisions?
After Lot Size 7 13 Density 3 3
- What is the appropriate zoning for Highland?
Before After R-1-20 1 1 R-1-30 3 5 R-1-40 9 11
- Should R-1-30 replace R-1-40?
After Yes 3 3 No 11 15
- Should R-1-30 be used instead of R-1-20?
After Yes 10 12 No 3 5
Brady Brammer (Planning Commission Vice-Chair) raised an interesting point when he observed that since the city council has little interest in approving additional Open Space subdivisions we are in effect changing the nature of city by only using R-1-40 or R-1-30 to develop the rest of Highland.
Even though we will likely meet again for additional discussions here is what I believe the general position of the planning commission and council will be going forward with request to zoning change requests.
- The standard residential zone will remain R-1-40.
- We will consider residential zoning change requests in areas where there are transitions issues or where topography significantly impacts development.
- The bias will be to use R-1-30 rather than R-1-20 in transition areas.