Panel OKs apartments, balks at new entry

Access road at First and Patterson not in line with safety code, staff says

Members of Grand Junction’s Planning Commission on Tuesday night unanimously voted in favor of allowing an 48-unit apartment complex at what’s known as the Corner Square development southwest of North First Street and Patterson Road.

But a proposal to open and allow access via 25 3/4 Road, which would create a western entry point to the new complex, was rejected after a tie vote with planning commissioner Ebe Eslami absent.

According to city staff, creation of a road at that site does not meet safety codes as it would run within 20 feet parallel to the Baughman family’s driveway, which is accessed off Patterson Road. While the developer, Ciavonne, Roberts & Associates, has proposed moving the Baughmans’ driveway, the family, which has deep roots at the site, has refused the offer.

“We feel we have been the victims of this project,” said Frances Baughman, who added that she did not want to see the driveway’s mature trees destroyed.

Others, including those who live in the nearby Knollwood Drive neighborhood, said they were concerned that developers would push to make their dead-end street a connector to the new development.

Representative Joe Carter of Ciavonne, Roberts & Associates said his company is not looking at that option for the time being, but he couldn’t promise that it would never be a possibility.

A spokeswoman for RE/MAX 4000, which occupies a building in the development’s first phase, said another access road is needed to curb traffic at the busy intersection.

“The parking lot’s always full,” she said.

Planning commissioner Roland Cole said he voted against the road because it may give both parties incentive to come to an agreement.

Cole and fellow commissioners Patrick Carlow and Mark Abbott voted against the proposal, while commissioners Reginald Wall, William Putnam and Lynn Pamela-Zarkesh voted in favor.

A proposal for 25 3/4 Road now heads to the Grand Junction City Council, but it will be presented without the commission’s recommendation.


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