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Planning & Zoning Committee

 

LMPOA

 

February, 2008

 

Rocks Development group has been presenting meetings about their proposal to build a waste treatment plant in the lower part of their development.  This is the second proposal from this project, the first being defeated at the County due to concerns by LMPOA. This current proposal will provide for the use of the effluent by the golf course mixed with creek water to water the fairways and greens.  This will involved the laying of a pipe from Indian Lakes to the collection pond located along Montezuma Ave. just north of hole 11.

 LMPOA continues to have concerns about the amount of  traffic that will occur coming across the bridge and through the community, not only as they build the plant but service it on a daily basis.  Once the plant is built, it can be assumed that homes will be build as well.

LMPOA has asked for a meeting with the owners on this issue.

 

PLANNING & ZONING COMMITTEE

February 14, 2008

 

Report on the Red Rocks Development Meeting of February 5, 2008, concerning Community Awareness of their Waste Water Treatment Land Use Permit Application.

 

Representing Red Rocks Development LLC, et al.

 

Yves Fedrigault

Principal

Jonathan Friedman

Manager

Dwight Zemp

Water Treatment Expert

Connie Dedrick

Presenter

Peter Hill

Owner, BC Golf Course

 

 

A brief history

Red Rocks Development is the owner of 245 of the 345 lots commonly known as Indian Lakes Amended, which was platted in 1967.  This has become known as a subdivision.  Red Rocks intends to develop this land for homes.  The 2006 proposal to handle wastewater by deep injection into the aquifer (recharge well) was denied by the Board of Supervisors (BOS).  This is an alternate proposal.  An agreement between Red Rocks and Mr. Peter Hill has been reached whereby BC Golf course can use all the effluent from waste water treatment to supplement irrigation of the course.  Currently, all the irrigation water for the course comes from Beaver Creek through the Golf courses’ surface water rights.  In Phase 1 it is projected the effluent would account for 10% of the Golf courses’ usage.

 

Technicalities

  • The Waste Water Plant
  • Proposed is approximately 5000 square feet of land devoted to a treatment plant.  The plant is below grade with a 2750 square foot building to support storage of residual solids and auxiliary equipment.  The plant is ultimately sized to support 85,000 gallons of effluent daily and in Phase 1 will produce an estimated 45,000 gallons.  The effluent produced will be classified A+, the highest level of effluent cleanliness, with Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) of 10.  As comparison, a septic tank produces a BOD of 50-100 in its effluent.  The plant will also produce solids, about 100 pounds a day during phase 1.  These are bagged, stored and proposed to be tractor trailored out once or twice a year.  After an additional year of storage these solids can be used as low nutrient mulch.  The plant is automated, and has failure alarms.  The underground process is under negative air pressure and air is filtered through activated charcoal to mitigate odors.  Noise is said to be minimized.  The plant will be landscaped to minimize visual impact.

   

  • The Transition to the Golf course

Proposed is a 3 to 4 inch buried pipe via County right of way and on the course itself.  The exact route is not known, but, as shown, it travels north via Rimrock Avenue to Montezuma Avenue then mostly on the Golf course (see map on last page).  Red Rocks appears to look to BC Golf Course to finalize the routing.  The effluent will be pumped to the pond which BC Golf course currently uses for irrigation.  This is located on Montezuma Avenue approximately ¼ mile north of the Clubhouse.  No upgrade to the pond was mentioned.  A continuation of trench and pipe for about 1/8th of a mile northeast of the pond is proposed for a possible future pond.  It was pointed out the effluent pipe and the wastewater plant are not close to Beaver Creek, although there are existing septic systems which are in close proximity to the creek.

 

  • Transportation Impact

For the plant itself, most maintenance will be handled by workers using a ½ ton pickup truck.  Deliveries of chemicals etc. will be via delivery truck (like UPS).  Once or twice a year a tractor trailer will remove bagged solids.  During construction the plant will be built in modules offsite and trucked in.  This is said to minimize construction traffic.  Once under construction, the facility will take 4 to 6 weeks to complete.  Eventually, there will be additional traffic through Lake Montezuma due to the 245 new homes.

 

 

  • Legalities & Timetable

Use permits are granted in perpetuity.  The waste treatment plant is subject to tests every 5 years.   Requested, is BCRC’s support for Red Rocks moving forward with its Land Use Permit submission (zoning).  Red Rocks is currently waiting for county / community comments, then a hearing with the Yavapai County P&Z Commission, then a hearing with the BOS.  If the permit is approved the waste treatment plant design then must be approved by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) for consistency with the master plan for the area.  If the facility is not allowed then there will be a process in which the facility will be added to the master plan which will extend the original 16 to 18 month approval process.  No specific start or end date was given.

 

 

Some Community Input

 

  • The following letter is from the LMPOA Transportation Committee

Concerning:  Water Reclamation System for Indian Lakes I by Red Rocks Development LLC from a transportation viewpoint

 

There are some strong positives to be gained by the general community through the organized development of the Indian Lakes lots owned by this company.  These are:

            1)  Maintained roads and less particulate pollution.

            2)  Less water usage than private wells.

            3)  A waste treatment plant is generally preferred to numerous septic systems.

            4)  The generation of more tax dollars for the fire and school districts than haphazard construction.

 

However there are some transportation issues that it would be helpful to address and several other community issues that are concerns. The completion of the water delivery and waste treatment systems will probably speed up the development of residential construction and occupation.  At this point the construction of the low water crossing for Brocket Ranch Rd has not been funded.  This means that residential Lake Montezuma will suffer the much increased traffic.  Those residents living on Rimrock, Beaver Vista, Meadow, and Lake Shore Dr are among the most affected by the traffic from the increasing development west of the golf course.  At this time nothing has been done to mitigate this problem.  Suggested actions are:

            1) Provide $150,000 to Yavapai County to fund the construction of speed humps on the affected internal streets and provide additional speed warnings, pedestrian warnings and residential signage particularly along Montezuma Ave from the Y to the square, all to be used prior to the completion of the waste treatment plant.  If Yavapai County does not utilize this fund as requested within three years, it is to be returned to the developer.

            2) Encourage Yavapai County to complete the extension of Brocket Ranch Rd and the low water crossing prior to home construction in that area.

 

Other general considerations are:

            1)  Haul slash to the refuse transfer station in order to help prevent forest fires.      Complete fire hydrants in the area.

            2)  Sound mitigation for the treatment plant to be required.

            3)  No night time lighting turned on unless the facility must be repaired or    serviced at night, then the lights should go off again.

            4) Landscaping should be done to protect the views of those above, to the sides, below, and in the distance on either side of the creek.  Individual lots should not be scalped of vegetation in order to preserve both the view shed and to help decrease erosion.  Disturbed areas should be re-vegetated.

            5) The treatment plant should be odor free.

            6)  The water storage lake on the golf course may need to be improved and reinforced as a safety precaution for possible flooding.

 

 

  • Karen & Richard Trask

We thought that Red Rocks Development gave a detailed, comprehensive presentation.  They answered all questions clearly and satisfactorily.  We appreciated the expertise of the sewage treatment plant design engineer and his explanations.  We feel that they are sensitive to our community and will keep us informed and will be open for communication during the entire process.

 

  • Bob Bruno

The approach the developer is currently taking is quite positive. A synergy between the Indian Lakes Amended future community and the golf course by recycling the water makes sense. Any increase in construction traffic appears to be minimal. The facility's aesthetics are well planned and with minimal impact.

  • Carole Pennfield

I’ve seen developer presentations before. They are like used car salesmen. They come with fancy drawings, showing unrealistic landscaping which does not fit the desert-scape or water resources.  Having seen the wastewater plant built by the Yavapai-Apache Nation near Highway 260, which is very industrial in appearance, I find it hard to believe the proposed ww plant for Indian Lakes will look like a pleasant park. 

 

 I also think they minimized the impact the construction project will have on residents of Lake Montezuma.  We will not only have to put up with massive, heavy construction vehicles blocking traffic on our one tiny bridge and creating noise, but also tearing up the pavement on our main street.  The length of the pipeline seems a long, long way from the proposed plant site to the furthest possible fairway. I’m not opposed to using treated effluent for landscaping the golf course, but have they considered bringing it to a part of the golf course closer to the plant?

 

I don’t recall hearing how “deep” they would have to excavate in order to sink this monster tank into the ground.  Have soil borings been done?  What about the dust that will ensue from all that excavation? What about the residents who live directly below the hill?   And I was not satisfied with their explanation regarding odor control or their estimate of once-per-year removal of sludge.  But then again, I am not a wastewater engineer.

 

In my humble opinion, they should not be allowed to build this plant until after an alternative river crossing is built, and that they should use the alternative crossing as the sole approach for their construction vehicles.  The developer’s comment that he might be “willing” to chip in a contribution to the cost of the new crossing does not raise my comfort level.  Given the number of new homes proposed for Indian Lakes, it is imperative that the second crossing receive priority. Look what happened to I-17 when Anthem was built, without requiring the developer to build an alternative route to Phoenix.

 

I would recommend BCRC take a field trip and visit some of the existing ww plants.

 

 

  • Kayo Parsons-Korn

Hi Carole,

 

I was finding it hard to believe that they could do all the separation and storage in such a small building. I also would prefer that they size the pipe now to handle Indian Lakes at total build out. If this is gravity flow, it shouldn’t matter if the pipe is larger than they need initially. I went through this whole scenario in the small town where I use to live. They built a sewer system with pipe just large enough to serve the existing households and 8 years later they were tearing the streets up again to put in a larger pipe.

 

When people asked about the construction traffic, I thought, this will probably be nothing compared to the construction traffic that will occur when the houses start being built. I can definitely see your concern if you live in that area. I wish they would put this whole thing off until the second bridge is built, but I believe that is now scheduled out to 2012. Believe it or not. Adding on 145 (sic) new homes without an alternate route out of the community is crazy. With just that one bridge, it is also a safety hazard if people should have to evacuate quickly, like in the case of a wildfire.

 

I was also hearing a little less than proof positive they had the water supply worked out. They said they were working with the Arizona Water Company and possibly helping them expand. I want to hear that is really happening and these new houses will not put existing homes in Lake Montezuma at risk for having water shortages.

 

 

The unfortunate thing is that this property was platted and that makes it legal for them to start building whenever they want. And do it with septic tanks if they want. Which would be an even worse idea. Using the water for the golf course is also a plus on their side. The golf course takes way too much of the creek water and we see the creek slow to a trickle and sometimes totally dry up in the late June every year.

 

 

Perhaps we can see if we can get a tour of Verde Santa Fe plant. I don’t think BCRC needs to give thumbs up or down on this at the next March meeting, just make a report on what we’ve learned. And we don’t have to really give a thumbs up or down anyway. We can just report to the County what we see as the pros and cons of the project.  

 

 

  • Bob Bruno responds to the above communiqués

1) (The) Artist's rendition of landscaping does not consider we are in a desert. That said, it does not mean the developer isn't going to try to build the facility in an aesthetically pleasing manor and mask it with appropriate vegetation. It is to his advantage to do so since the homes he will try to sell will be looking down on the facility. He knows the buyers of those homes would object to looking at an industrial plant.
2) I think they described the construction process and equipment as best they could. I don't see "heavy construction vehicles blocking traffic on our one tiny bridge". Yes, the secondary access will be necessary when such a large subdivision is built out, but that isn't the issue we are to consider.
3) Potential water supply with Arizona water again is not the issue here.
4) The golf course owner said that a new pond may be built for blending and storing the water. Perhaps that pond could be closer to the plant thereby shortening the pipeline and minimizing its related road construction disturbances.
5) Regarding size of transmission pipe ... the engineers said it would be sized for the maximum output of the plant. I think I heard them say that's a 4" pipe for 90,000 gallons.
6) Minimizing the irrigation draw from Beaver Creek is certainly something everyone can agree to.
7) Visiting other plants as a group might give us a better perspective on what we are dealing with.
 
(The Presenter was) Connie Dedrick, Project Coordinator for Shephard Wesnitzer, Inc. They are the preeminent engineering firm in the area. Offices in Sedona, Cottonwood, Flagstaff and Prescott.

 



  • Steve Sprinz

Red Rocks is working to join with the community.  They want to do the right thing.  In my opinion the waste water solution is viable, if a bit short-ranged.  There is a problem and it is “Access”.  To paraphrase LMPOA’s letter from their Transportation Committee: major projects such as waste water and home construction, and future traffic - all through the middle of Lake Montezuma, demand mitigation in the matter of local roads.  It only makes sense for Red Rocks to encourage and help the “County to complete the extension of Brocket Ranch Rd and the low water crossing prior to home construction in that area”.  This makes the whole community safer and more desirable.  This is necessary before constructing 245 new homes and adding that many families to our already *Access Challenged* community.  In this sense I could not support endorsing the waste water solution, without some evidence of the same concerted effort by Red Rocks toward the Access solution.

 

 

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