Friday, April 7, 2006

Sun Valley to consider 'Gun Club Nine'

Express Staff Writer

Sun Valley Co. will present to the city of Sun Valley next week its plans for developing its Gun Club property northeast of Sun Valley Village. The project calls for nearly 400 housing units, which would be developed after a new 9-hole golf course called the "Gun Club Nine" is constructed.

The Sun Valley Planing and Zoning Commission will consider two associated Sun Valley Co. applications to develop the site under a detailed master plan Tuesday, April 11, during a public hearing. The meeting starts at 9 a.m.

The company's master plan application provides a general framework for recreational and residential development of the area along Trail Creek Road. It is coupled with a design application for the Gun Club Nine.

"The primary issue is, can we review this Land Use Planning Area by itself," said Mark Hofman, Sun Valley community development director.

If the P&Z determines the Gun Club master plan application is linked to other designated "Land Use Planning Areas," it has the discretion to request other master plans before considering the Gun Club submittal and the golf course design-review application.

Hofman said he believes that the area is not critically linked to other areas in the city.

The city has identified the site as a significant land area, which requires an approved master plan prior to development. The city's Master Plan Development Ordinance requires the company to set forth land uses, transportation, sewer, water and open-space issues for the 344-acre area.

The Gun Club master plan application outlines mixed uses for the property including the 9-hole golf course, 30 single-family house lots, and 365 multi-family residential units.

If the commission determines that the master plan application can stand alone, it will also consider the design application for the new golf course.

Jack Sibbach, Sun Valley Co. director of sales, marketing and public relations, said demand for golf during the resort's high season necessitates another course.

The course would start on the north side of Trail Creek Road and climb onto the Gun Club site's ridgelines before descending back toward the road.

City staff is reviewing environmental issues pertinent to the golf course, including lead levels in the soil. Some believe that years of people discharging firearms at the Gun Club may have contaminated the area.

Plans tentatively call for Sun Valley Co. to begin golf course construction in mid-May, with the course scheduled to open in 2008. Residential development would follow.

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