Issue 2: Reduced buffer from 5280 to 660 ft UPDATE: REDUCED

Details about Case # PZ-C-004-21 UPDATE: BUFFER REDUCED to 660 ft

8/25/2021 2 min read

Map illustration of proposed development in Gold Canyonn

UPDATE: The Board of Supervisors voted to reduce the one-mile buffer to 660 ft.

On July 15, 2021, the Arizona State Land Department (ASLD) requested, and the P&Z (Planning and Zoning) Commission voted to recommend to the Board of Supervisors approval of the elimination of a provision in Pinal County Development Services Code Chapter 2.360.030 which currently requires that an area seeking a zoning classification of MP-CMP ("multi-purpose community master plan") must be 1 mile from an existing single-family residential development.

We now know that the project contemplated by the Amendment proposed by # PZ-PA-006-21 is seeking MP-CMP classification.

The MP-CMP zoning classification was created for, and has only previously been utilized by the Attesa project, the unprecedented development of a private motor sport racetrack within a residential area near Casa Grande. This zoning classification created unparalleled "flexibility" in the creation of mixed residential/employment developments without customary public involvement. In # PZ-C-004-21, the ASLD seeks to increase flexibility, eliminate the 1-mile buffer, and permit development right up to boundary lines of existing communities.

At the July 15 meeting, Chairman Riggins stated, “I can see how that would be very good for the person who wanted it. I just don’t see how it’s real good for everybody else.” Extensive discussion followed.

Nevertheless, a compromise was reached and the P&Z Commission recommended reduction of the existing required buffer zone from 1 mile to 660 feet. The measure next moves forward to the Board of Supervisors for consideration and a vote.

Below is a link to the video, cued to the portion of the P&Z meeting in which Evan Evangelopoulos, Pinal County Planner, and Himanshu Patel, Deputy County Manager of Pinal County, presented the Code amendment request. ASLD was then represented by the attorney Carolyn Oberholtzer, whom the ASLD hired to push through # PZ-PA-006-21 and who advocated quite strenuously for approval of the changes.

A copy of the Code with markups showing the changes proposed by ASLD, together with the compromise language added by the P&Z Commission set forth in red, is posted separately.

The interrelation of these Code changes to the State’s proposed re-classification and sale of the parcel in Gold Canyon between Peralta and Entrada del Oro is paramount. Therefore, opposition to the proposed Code changes of # PZ-C-004-21 should be pursued in tandem with opposition to the proposed changes of the Comprehensive Land Use in # PZ-PA-006-21.

The Pima County Board of Supervisors will vote on this case on August 25, 2021. Please contact its members before this date. Their contact information can be found under "What you can do."

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