Kalispell City Council decides subdivision near Ponderosa Estates needs further study


<img HEIGHT="54" WIDTH="87" BORDER="10" ALIGN="right" ALT="Kalispell, MT" SRC="http://www.google.com/mapdata?Point=b&Point.latitude_e6=4820

1610&Point.longitude_e6=4180652396&Point.iconid=4294967295&Point=e&latitude_e6=48201610&longitude_e6=4180652396&zm=9600&w=87&h=54&cc=US&min_priority=1″ />The Kalispell City Council put on hold a proposed annexation of an 81-acre subdivision south of Ponderosa Estates.

But the council is unsure what it wants from the developer — Gateway Properties Inc. — to put the annexation proposal back into motion.

The project — Valley Ranch — is opposed by the majority of Ponderosa’s households, but has unanimous support of the Kalispell Planning Board.

Gateway wants to build 204 houses, 29 townhouses and an assisted-living center with as many as 120 units.

Gateway seeks annexation with some zoning modifications — dubbed a “planned unit development” — that would allow the proposed construction.

A planned-unit development is a type of contract in which the city relaxes some zoning restrictions in return for the developer promising to put in specific mitigation measures.

Valley Ranch is east of U.S. 93 and touches the northern border of developer Bucky Wolford’s Glacier Town Center mall-and-housing project, plus the south side of Ponderosa Estates. Wolford expects to seek annexation soon for the 481-acre Glacier Town Center, but a timetable is still up in the air.

Fifty-three of 73 Ponderosa Estate households turned in a 12-page protest against annexing Valley Ranch. Consequently, state law requires six out of nine council members to support Gateway’s requests before they can be approved.

Ponderosa‘s opposition generally is based on Valley Ranch designed to be more densely populated than Ponderosa Estates, plus what the residents believe are incompletely answered matters in Gateway’s plans.

However, the developers contend they have adequately addressed those concerns.

The combined Valley Ranch and Glacier Town Center annexations would extend Kalispell city limits from West Reserve Drive to Ponderosa Estates.

The Daily Inter Lake


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