Project on Bitner Road goes back before the Summit County Council
July 17, 2018
The Summit County Council will be asked on Wednesday to consider approving a mixed-use development on Bitner Road in the Kimball Junction area. If approved, it would be the first new development allowed since the adoption of the General Plan in 2015.
The County Council has only reviewed the project once since the Snyderville Basin Planning Commission endorsed it in May. The planning panel's approval of a conditional-use permit hinges on the Council's decision whether to rezone the property and approve the development agreement.
Lincoln Station, proposed by Crisco Development LLC, a Park City-based development firm, would be comprised of 10 townhomes, 36 one-bedroom and 32 two-bedroom apartments, with 52 of the units deed restricted as affordable housing, as well as 5,000 square feet of commercial space. The site is east of the Park City Fire District's Administrative Offices.
At a June meeting, County Council members were asked to determine whether the project should even be considered. After focusing primarily on the affordable housing component, Councilors agreed to seriously consider the project. County Council members Chris Robinson and Doug Clyde agreed to meet with the developer and county staffers to discuss it further.
According to a planning department staff report, the number of units and layout of the plan did not change after additional meetings with staff and elected officials. But, the developer agreed to increase the number of restricted units to target more income levels. All of the units will be for rent.
Vincent Criscione, the developer, has consistently shown a willingness to provide more affordable housing units than what is required by the Basin's development code. Criscione has also expressed a desire to partner with the county to provide an electric-bike station and other ride-share programs to reduce traffic in the area.
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More than a dozen people attended a hearing before the Planning Commission in May, with most offering their support for the development because of its proximity to services. Others disagreed with the location and felt a mixed-use project would add more traffic to the area.
The application the County Council is reviewing on Wednesday requests to rezone the property from rural residential to community commercial to allow for more development. The property is currently zoned to allow one residential unit per 20 acres. In a community commercial zone, multi-family residential units are allowed through a conditional-use permit process.
The County Council is cautiously approaching the request because of the precedent it could set for future projects in the Basin. Lincoln Station is among the first development applications that has been considerably vetted to determine whether it violates the General Plan's Policy 2.3 that restricts new development or if the affordable housing element is enough to warrant approval. The affordable housing component was critical to the Planning Commission's approval and has been the focus of most discussions.
"We want to make sure that we get the benefit of the bargain," Robinson said in June. "Have we reached that tipping point that throws this into upzoning this density?"
County staffers are recommending the Council either continue the item to allow more time to review the development agreement or move forward with approval.
A hearing is scheduled on Wednesday at 6 p.m. in the Sheldon Richins Building. The item is listed as a public hearing with the possibility of approval.