Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Did cities get the message of SB170?

There's an article in today's Salt Lake Tribune which says that Sen. Mansell is going to tone down SB170. That's a good thing. Any bill that makes only one side happy and one side upset is not a good compromise. This bill as it is currently written made developers almost giddy. It made cities throughout the state act like rabid dogs.
It will be interesting to see how it is re-written. The article says that the revised bill will still "force local governments to strictly follow land-use ordinances and zoning master plans." I think this part could come back to bite developers.
Let me give a real-world example. Woods Cross adopted a master plan not all that long ago that called for large lots with lots of green space between 2425 South and 1500 South, west of Redwood Road. That same master plan called for the area south of 2425 South to the city border, west of Redwood Road, to be industrial area. The ink had barely dried on that master plan when we had developers coming asking to put in higher density housing between 2425 South and 1500 South. As a city council member at the time, I would love to have said to the developers (Ivory Homes and Development Associates), sorry, we can't do that because we have to strictly follow our master plan that we have adopted. Instead, we worked with them to come up with something that was good for them and for Woods Cross City.
The fact is, developers, aren't always turned down by the cities of Utah. There are numerous times where city councils work with developers to have a good compromise. Is forcing a city to strictly follow the master plan always a good idea?

1 comment:

Former Centerville Citizen said...

This is food for thought.

If this law had been passed three years ago, and if Centerville hadn't changed it's master plan, then I suppose the city could have turned Wal-Mart down since it didn't fit the master plan at that time.