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Sedona City Council decides Tuesday, May 8, whether to accept 7.8 acres of creek-front property or require Cole Sedona Preserve to pay Parks and Recreation development impact fees.

By Trista Steers
Larson Newspapers
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Sedona City Council decides Tuesday, May 8, whether to accept 7.8 acres of creek-front property or require Cole Sedona Preserve to pay Parks and Recreation development impact fees. Acceptance means deciding what to use the property for, as well.

The Planning and Zoning Commission wants it open to the public. The Parks and Recreation Commission wants to keep people out.

Planning and Zoning recommended council accept the property, also known as Jordan Reserve, on Dec. 20. Commissioners included the idea of using the creek-front property located in Uptown to provide public access to Oak Creek.

Parks and Recreation Commission also recommended council accept the property Dec. 6 but wants it to be preserved. The commission recommends a viewing platform be built above the creek without access below.

?I really don?t want the creek that open to access to everybody,? Mayor Pud Colquitt said. Colquitt wants to limit access to keep Oak Creek pristine.

If council accepts the property, Cole Sedona Preserve will be given approximately $800,000 in development impact fee credit.

If council doesn?t accept the roperty, Cole Sedona Preserve is required to pay the Parks and Recreation development impact fee of approximately $800,000.

Money received could then be used for a different parks and recreation projects, City Manager Eric Levitt said.

You have to see this as lost income,? Councilman Harvey Stearn said. ?I don?t see it [accepting
property] as a win-win for the city. I see it as a lose-lose.?

Councilman John Bradshaw, who fished Oak Creek in that area as a child, said he?d hate for the city to give up the land and a private property owner cut off public access.

The city should accept the property and sit on it without making improvements, Bradshaw said.

Councilwoman Nancy Scagnelli said she understands the issue of lost money but feels the land offer is a great opportunity.

Levitt gave council three options to consider at a work session April 25.
n Option one: council accepts the property but doesn?t make any improvements for use.
n Option two: council accepts the property and improvements including a 150-foot bridge to access the property. The city would have to help fund construction of the bridge.
n Option three: do not accept the land and collect $800,000 in parks and recreation development impact fees.

Levitt and city staff recommend council select the third option but development impact fees won?t be paid until Cole Sedona Preserve obtains a building permit for its
condominium project on the remaining portion of its land.

Council approved Preserves at Oak Creek, Cole Sedona Preserve?s 158-unit condominium project, Feb. 14, 2006.

City Director of Community Development John O?Brien told council the developer is in preliminary stages of development.

O?Brien expects the developer to present a final plat to the city this summer and possibly break ground in the fall.

The decision deadline set by the development agreement is Saturday, May 26.


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