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Blue Creek Ranch wrong for county

Dear Editor:I am writing on behalf of the St. Finnbar Homeowners Association on County Road 100 in Carbondale, to warn Garfield County neighbors and residents of an outrageous attempt on the part of the Planning Department and the Planning and Zoning Commission to dramatically change the allowed Comprehensive Plan density in this area from low to high.The Garfield County Comprehensive Plan provides for one unit for every 10 acres in the area of this planned project. The Blue Creek project is requesting one unit for every 1.6 acres.In a hearing before the Planning and Zoning on July 10, surrounding neighbors, including us, were virtually ignored by the Planning and Zoning, which voted to recommend approval of the Blue Creek Ranch project (directly across the street from St. Finnbar).A hearing before the county commissioners is scheduled for a vote on the Blue Creek PUD Preliminary Plan, and also a needed waiver by the development company to construct improvements within floodplain, at 1:15 p.m. on Aug. 5 at the Garfield County Courthouse in Glenwood Springs.The impact of this project would be:-To allow 49 units to be built on acreage of about 81 acres. Most of the building lots are less than 1/2 acre. Some are as small as 5,000 square feet (1/8 acre).-To create at least 450 vehicle movements per day coming out of the project, not to mention heavy trucks from possible unrelated agricultural activity of a nursery/tree farm. This will heavily impact traffic patterns between Highway 82 and County Road 100, including destruction of the intended pastoral nature of the area. Create much heavier traffic on County Road 100. Increase in noise, pollution and traffic accidents.-As some of you know, afternoon downvalley traffic has all but stopped on Highway 82 before it gets to the left turn lane of Highway 133. Will this project cause the same thing to happen at Highway 82 and County Road 100? -The development company plans cluster homes and a sewer treatment station close to and in view of County Road 100.-The project completely undermines the Comprehensive Plan by changing the area from rural/agricultural to urban/high density.When St. Finnbar Farm was approved by Garfield County about two years ago, the planning staff was generally opposed to the density of our development, which has 13 home sites on 85 acres, a density of one home on 6.7 acres, four times less than Blue Creek. Several months ago, this same Planning Commission approved another development on County Road 100, the Roaring Fork Preserve, which has a density very similar to St. Finnbar (one home on 10 acres), and which preserves and protects the rural character of the area, and the intent of the Comprehensive Plan.We feel it is unconscionable and unacceptable that the Planning and Zoning, and the planning staff, should act in such an inconsistent and irresponsible manner. We urge all interested residents to appear at the meeting to strongly protest approval by the county commissioners. If residents cannot attend, they may also write the county commissioners.Sincerely,St. Finnbar HomeownersAssociationJim MindlingWeston, Conn.


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