Two local propositions will be found at the end of the Nov. 3 general election ballot in Tooele County.
The first proposition, or Prop #1, is a referendum on the zone change for a proposed subdivision in Erda.
Known as Shoshone Village, the approximately 109-acre proposed subdivision lies between state Route 36 and Droubay Road, east of Cimmarron Way.
The concept plan for Shoshone Village showed a 9.5-acre buffer zone of open space on the south and east end of the property with 16-acres of 1-acre lots backing up to the buffer zone. The remaining 65 acres would have a range of lots sizes, but overall the entire project would not have a density greater than three residences per acre, according to the plan.
The Tooele County Commission approved the rezone of the property from rural residential lots with 5-acre minimum size to residential lots with a 12,000-square-foot minimum size on Nov. 20, 2018.
However, a group of Tooele County citizens gathered enough signatures on a petition to place the rezone decision on the Nov. 3, 2020 ballot.
A vote for Prop #1 is a vote to preserve the zone change and allow the subdivision to proceed. A vote against Prop #1 is a vote to overturn the County Commission’s rezone of the property and return it to it’s RR-5 designation.
Shoshone Village’s proposed plan is consistent with the Tooele County General Plan, according to Lynn Butterfield, who wrote the argument for approval of Prop #1. Butterfield is a real estate broker and a member of the Tooele County Planning Commission.
“Shoshone Villages’ approved residential density of three single family homes per acre is well within the contemplated vision of the Tooele County General Plan. The County Commission’s approval of Shoshone Village, at least in part, resulted from the consistency of Shoshone Village with the said general plan… ,” wrote Butterfield in the argument for Prop #1 on the Tooele County Clerk’s website.
Butterfield continued to write; “The increased density facilitated by the subject re-zoning will also accommodate the construction of sustainable, affordable housing for a larger segment of the Tooele County community, together with park, trail and open-space amenities that positively contribute to Tooele County’s way of life both for the residents of Shoshone Village and the Tooele County community generally.”
Wendy Sasser, an Erda resident and one of the sponsors of the referendum, wrote the argument against approval of Prop #1.
“Proposition 1 will change zoning in a primarily agricultural area from RR-5 — rural residential single family with five-acre minimum lot size — to R-1-12 — residential single family with 10,000 to 22,000 square foot lot sizes with up to three dwelling units per acre. In the proposed development, this zoning change would constitute approximately a 700% increase in average density which is eight times what is allowed in the original RR-5 zoning designation,” wrote Sasser.
Sasser continued to write: “Many reasons exist to vote against the zone change taking effect. Increased traffic and congestion, inadequate road systems, a limited water supply, and additional stresses on our overcrowded school system are a few reasons a citizen may choose to vote against this zone change taking effect. The most significant reason to vote against the zone change is the development is not appropriate for, nor in harmony with, the surrounding area. In addition, procedures in Utah State Code were not followed when the zone change was approved.”
Butterfield counters that all legal requirements were followed. He also asserts that the project owners will participate with Tooele County in the construction of a new road to connect Droubay Road with SR-36 as well as pay for other roads and open space amenities.
Shoshone Village’s approved design will provide a mixture of open space and large residential lots to provide buffer space, according to Butterfield.
Sasser argues that Shoshone Village’s density is not in harmony with the surrounding area.
She points out that Shoshone Village if developed as its original RR-5 designation would only have 22 residences and not the proposed 174.
Sasser also points out that Droubay Farms, a 5th generation large-acreage production farm, borders the Prop 1 parcels to the north.
“Urban style development does not belong in a rural setting and next to an active farm. Neighborhoods should be cohesive communities,” writes Sasser.
Sasser also expresses concern that the roads are not adequate for the traffic.
The complete arguments for and against Prop #1 may be read on the Tooele County Clerk’s website at tooeleco.org. Select “Elections and Information” from the menu on the left sid eof the clerk’s home screen. Then select “Election Information” and scroll down to the “Arguments” menu.
This story was updated Oct. 8, 2020 to reflect that a “no” vote on Prop. #1 is a vote to return the subject property to RR-5 not RR-1.