In a meeting that lasted more than six hours on Dec. 7, the Oro Valley Town Council voted on four General Plan amendments, including proposals that would allow apartment construction, and one to extend the town’s designation area.
The first proposal to allow the construction of an apartment complex failed in a 6-1 vote.
If it had been approved, the General Plan amendment would have changed the land-use designation at the northeast corner of Rancho Visto Boulevard from commerce office park to high-density residential.
The apartment complex planned would have been located on a 15-acre parcel, with 256 apartments in a two, or three-story building.
In a presentation to the council, David Williams, the Oro Valley planning division manager, said 21 residents have written letters against the proposal, and two have written letters in favor.
During the public hearing portion of the meeting, many residents spoke out against the plan, while business owners told the council more executive housing is needed for traveling and working adults.
Dave Perry, President and CEO of the Northern Pima County Chamber of Commerce, spoke in favor of the project.
After some discussion, the council opted to side with the recommendation from the Planning and Zoning Commission, and town staff to deny the project.
Councilman Joe Hornat motioned to continue the agenda item for more discussion, but it failed. Hornat was the lone vote against denying the project.
In another proposal for apartments, the council voted 5-2 to amend the General Plan, despite several residents speaking out against it.
Mayor Satish Hiremath and Councilman Bill Garner voted against the proposal.
The property at the northeast corner of Linda Vista Boulevard and Oracle Road has now changed from commerce office park to high-density residential.
The 13-acre parcel used to be the construction site for a hotel that could not be completed by property owner Ross Rulney.
Perry also spoke in favor of this project.
The Council also approved the final two general plan amendments on the Dec. 7 agenda, including a plan to expand the municipal planning area boundaries west to Thornydale Road, and south to Orange Grove Road, encompassing 11 miles of land, which will be assigned as an “undesignated area.”
While the Town of Oro Valley has plans for annexation, they are not planning to annex the entire 11 acres approved in the planning area.
The final general plan amendment was to change a 13-acre parcel located a quarter of a mile south of Tangerine Road on the west side of La Cholla Boulevard from neighborhood commercial/office to medium density residential.
The council had to hear all four proposals for a General Plan amendment before Jan. 1 as required by law.
In other business, the council unanimously approved moving forward with a $3.4 million pool expansion project.