Queen Creek P&Z to host special meeting Aug. 31

Proposed changes prompted by pending updates to airport land use plan

The Queen Creek Planning and Zoning Commission will hold a special meeting Wednesday, Aug. 31, to hear comments on four proposed Major General Plan Amendments as well as proposed rezoning changes to Planned Area Development parcels in the town of Queen Creek.

The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. in room 2022 at Communiversity at Queen Creek, 21740 S. Ellsworth Road. The public is invited to attend.

Commission Chairman Alex Matheson encourages the public to attend and learn about the proposed items that could potentially impact the neighborhood in which they live or the town in general.

“The more input the better,” Mr. Matheson said during a phone interview. “Especially from people who live in the areas (that will be affected) with insights about what they feel is appropriate for the area.

“It would be great for them to come out to understand what is being planned because this is in the early planning stages,” Mr. Matheson continued. “This way they won’t be caught off-guard later on. There may be a time later in the process where they can’t have a say.”

Some of the proposed rezoning and amendments were prompted by proposed updates by the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport Authority to the Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan. In June, the airport authority approved an intent to approve the update, according to documents in the commission’s information packet for that night’s meeting.

The updates will enable the town to build residential communities in areas where they are prohibited due to noise issues caused by aircraft, Mr. Matheson said.

“It’s created a whole section of land where we once thought only industrial would be,” Brett Burningham, planning administrator with the Queen Creek Development Services Department, said during a phone interview. “Now it won’t be as noisy.”

The planning commission advises the Queen Creek Town Council in decisions pertaining to amendments to the town’s General Plan, its Zoning Ordinance and applications for development, according to the town’s website.

Among its duties are to develop and maintain the General Plan and submit the plan and its elements to the town council.

The Aug. 31 special meeting is the first of four required opportunities for the public to comment on the Major General Plan Amendments, Mr. Burningham said.

The applications have two unique requirements, he said.

“We are required by state law to have two separate planning commission public hearings in two separate locations for all Major General Plan Amendment applications,” he said.

Those hearings will take place during the Aug. 31 meeting at Communiversity and the Sept. 14 planning and zoning regular meeting starting at 7 p.m. at the Queen Creek Town Hall, 22350 S. Ellsworth Road.

Also, the town of Queen Creek General Plan requires that two public hearings are heard by the town council, Mr. Burningham said. Those meetings are scheduled on the Sept. 7 and 21 town council agendas, he said.

Town council meetings begin at 5:30 p.m.; however, public hearings are not heard before 7 p.m., according to the town’s website.

Proposed Major General Plan Amendments may be heard once a year, Mr. Burningham said. The state requires all the proposed amendments be heard at the same meeting, he said.

The format of the Aug. 31 special meeting will include presentations on each of the items and the public hearings, Mr. Matheson said. The commissioners will not take action on any of the items that night. They may take action at the Sept. 14 meeting, Mr. Matheson said.

The agenda for the planning commission’s Aug. 31 special meeting includes the following:

•Public hearing on GPA16-026 “Barney Farms Major General Plan Amendment” (Resolution 1107-16), a request by the Barney Family for a Major General Plan Amendment for 67 acres from Employment Type-A and Recreation and Conservation to Medium-High Density Residential (0-5 dwelling units/acre). This project is generally located at the northeast corner of Queen Creek Road and the Signal Butte Road alignment.
This item was prompted by updates being proposed by the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport Authority to its Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan, according to the commissioners’  information packet

•Public hearing on RZ16-043 “Barney Farms Planned Area Development Rezone” (Ordinance 620-16), a request by the Barney Family, to rezone approximately 534 acres from R1-5, 1-1, and RC to R1-5/PAD. This project is generally bounded by Meridian Road to the east, Queen Creek Road to the south, the Signal Butte Road alignment to the west and approximately 800 feet south of Germann Road to the north.

•Public hearing on GPA16-024 “Meridian Ranch aka Malone Place Major General Plan Amendment” (Resolution 1108-16), a request by W Holdings and Langley Properties for a Major General Plan Amendment of 377 acres from Employment Type-A to Medium-High Density Residential (0-5 DU/AC). This project is generally located at the southeast corner of Signal Butte Road and Queen Creek Road.

•Public Hearing on RZ16-045 “Meridian Ranch aka Malone Place Planned Area Development Rezone” (Ordinance 621-16), a request by W Holdings and Langley Properties for a
rezone of 377 acres from R1-43 (Rural Estate District) to a Planned Area Development (PAD/R1-5 (Urban Development District) and R1-7 (Urban Development Type A District). This project is generally located at the southeast corner of Signal Butte Road and Queen Creek Road.

•Public hearing on GPA16-025 “Meridian Estates aka Spur Cross Major General Plan Amendment” (Resolution 1109-16), a request by Brad Hinton, El Dorado Holdings, for a Major
General Plan Amendment for 234 acres from Employment Type A and Neighborhood Commercial to Option 1: Medium Density Residential (0-3 DU/AC), Medium-High Density Residential (0-5 DU/AC) and Neighborhood Commercial or, Option 2: Medium Density Residential (0-3 DU/AC) and Medium-High Density Residential (0-5 DU/AC). This project is generally located at the northeast corner of Signal Butte Road and Ocotillo Road.

•Public hearing ON RZ16-047 “Meridian Estates aka Spur Cross Planned Area Development Rezone” (Ordinance 622-16), a request by Brad Hinton, El Dorado Holdings, for a zone change from R1-43 to Planned Area Development with Option 1: PAD/R1-4, R1-5, R1-7, R1-9 and NC or, Option 2: PAD/R1-4, R1-5, R1-7 and R1-9 on a 234-acre site generally located at the northeast corner of Signal Butte Road and Ocotillo Road.

•Public hearing on RZ16-046 (Ordinance 619-16) “Meridian Crossing Planned Area Development Rezone,” a request by Westcor Queen Creek, LLC., for a zone change from R1-43 to Planned Area Development/R1-5 on a 415-acre site, generally located at the southwest corner of Gary Road and the Riggs Road alignment.

•Public hearing on GPA16-027 (Resolution 1106-16) “Meridian Crossing Major General Plan Amendment,” a request by Westcor Queen Creek, LLC., for a Major General Plan Amendment on 433 acres from Medium Density Residential (0-3 DU/AC) to Medium-High Density Residential (0-5 DU/AC), generally located at the southwest corner of Gary Road and the Riggs Road Alignment.

To read information on each item, visit the Calendar on the town’s website and click on the meeting listing for Aug. 31.

The Queen Creek Planning and Zoning Commission generally meets on the second Wednesday of each month. Study sessions, if scheduled, are held at 6 p.m. and regular meetings are held at 7 p.m. at the town hall.

Serving on the planning commission with Mr. Matheson are Vice Chairman Gregory Arrington and commissioners Shaine Alleman, Josh Ehmke, Steve Sossaman, Chris Webb and Nichelle Williams.

The planning commission meetings are available on live stream and recorded at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/town-of-queen-creek-planning-and-zoning.

To see previews of upcoming cases, visit the town’s YouTube page: https://www.youtube.com/user/TheQCchannel.

News Editor Wendy Miller can be contacted at 480-982-7799 and via e-mail at qcnews@newszap.com, or follow her on Twitter @WendyNewszap123.

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