Volume 104, Number 18 - May 3, 2007
brought to you online by Pinedale Online
Andres, seeking annexation, presents development again
“I’m only telling you who I am and what I want to do,” Bernard Andres said at the beginning of a public meeting concerning his development proposal for south of Pinedale. Andres, who is seeking to put 572 homes on Pole Creek Road, sent out invitations to neighbors along the road and project to hear their concerns. At the meeting, he introduced the project, going over the basics of the development, and listened to the public’s comments. He would not answer questions to specifics of the project.
Andres introduced his project to the community in December, at a joint town and county planning and zoning meeting. Currently, until he has approval for annexation, the project is still only a proposal. Andres has yet to submit any applications to the governing entities.
Nor has he purchased the land that his proposal would encompass. The needed parcels include tracts owned by John and Virginia Doyle, Theodore and Mary Manderfeld and the PDM Land Company, LLC. His first action step is to become contiguous with the town, to facilitate annexation. To become contiguous, Andres needs a tract owned by Robert and Karen Harrower, and one owned by James and Marla Harrigan to become annexed. The petition needs 60 percent of the landowners seeking annexation. His team of lawyers, architects and employees from his corporation hope to get the petition before the town council in 30 days. The public response was not positive. Though many citizens simply asked for clarifications, several said they were opposed to the project.
Concerns spanned congested traffic on Pole Creek Road as it would merge onto Highway 191, the density needs of the county, and the impacts on local facilities such as the understaffed Sheriff’s Department and the school district. Others were worried that a commercial component of the proposed development would draw shoppers away from the centralized district in downtown Pinedale. “This is something I don’t want to see,” one woman told the developers. “It doesn’t fit Pinedale.”
Citing a developed valley in California that turned from agricultural land to developments, she added “If this starts, God only knows where it’s going to go from here.” She received applause at the end of her comments, and Andres gave an imperturbable “thank-you.” Monte Skinner, who lives on Bates Lane across from the proposed area, told the developers the traffic increase would be too much, and asked how school bus stops would be conceived. “The way that road is right now, you can’t walk on it because of the traffic,” he added, to which another citizen attested. Andres responded that a study on school bus stops and turn-offs was under-way. The only access from the development to Highway 191 would be Pole Creek Road, due to a Wyoming Department of Transportation restriction on access points within specified distances.
“Density is a bad word here, but it is the only one I can use,” Andres told the crowd in the beginning. His development, divided into four “villages” would span multi-family town homes to single family homes on less than half an acre. He confirmed some units would legally be deemed “affordable housing,” and cited a development of his in Jackson Hole that offered some homes for under $150,000 alongside the higher-end ones. The word density was one of the factors dooming the Richardson development, which was recently withdrawn from the table.
“I personally believe this town will grow. I know some of you hate that idea,” Andres told the crowd before he listened to their comments, which he said would help him develop consistently with what citizens desired. The only desires expressed at the meeting ran along the lines of lower density or no Andres’ development at all.
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