When it meets Thursday this week the Planning and Zoning Commission will renew its discussion and propose a recommendation to the Town Council regarding the Daybreak apartment plan proposed for Fountain Hills.
At its meeting on July 25, the commission continued the discussion at the request of the developer and set the date for Sept. 12. Paul Gilbert, an attorney for the developer, asked the commission to postpone its action until Thursday, Aug. 8. He said the developers wanted another chance to meet with residents in the area of the proposed project. However, the motion made by the commission set the date for Sept. 12.
An audience of about 200 had come ready to discuss the plan and a similar crowd is expected this week to provide input on the plan.
Robert Courtney, president of the West Ridge Village Homeowners’ Association, and Jeremy Hall, president of the development team, both confirmed they have met twice since the July meeting. However, neither would comment on the outcome of those discussions.
The Daybreak development is planned for 23 acres of an approximately 60-acre site off Palisades Boulevard north of Shea. The plan calls for 36 acres of the property to remain open space.
The site is currently zoned for lodging and there have been a few aborted resort plans for the parcel.
Hall, former president with MCO Properties who oversaw development for MCO in Fountain Hills, and Neil Ginsberg, who was part of the team that initially developed the CopperWynd Resort in town, are joining forces on the Daybreak development proposal as Hilltop Vista Properties, LLC.
Their zoning request calls for a minor amendment to the General Plan changing the site designation from lodging to multi-family medium density to allow for the multi-family development.
A second request before the commission is to designate a Planned Area Development, or Daybreak PAD, as the zoning for the parcel. The existing zoning is L-3 PUD (for the lodging) and OSR, or open space.
The changes would allow for development of 400 apartment units on the site. The plan calls for 270 garden apartments in a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom without age restriction. Additionally, the proposal includes 130 one- and two-bedroom units that would be age restricted to 55 and older.
Since the project was first unveiled in March town officials have received a significant number of comments from people stating opposition to the project. Many of those come from the West Ridge Village subdivision just north of the development site, and Crestview on the west side of Palisades Boulevard from the project.
Traffic is a major concern, with opponents stating the southern access to Daybreak is too close to Shea Boulevard. It would be directly across from and share access with the Crestview entry.
Gilbert sent a memo last week to the neighborhood groups and the town proposing a roundabout solution to the main entry to the evelopment.
There is also concern with the multi-family use with some stating the property should remain designated for resort. Hall has stated that with CopperWynd just about a mile from that site there is no need for another resort property in that area.
The Planning and Zoning Commission meets Thursday, Sept. 12, at 6 p.m. The session will be held at the Community Center to accommodate the expected large crowd. The meeting is open to the public and there will be a public hearing. The council is scheduled to consider the requests at its regular session on Tuesday, Oct. 1.