By Tommy Acosta
Sedona News (July 7, 2021) The Sedona Planning & Zoning commission at its July 6 meeting voted 5 to 2 to move the building of Jordan Lofts in Uptown Sedona forward
The Sedona Planning and Zoning commission approved the Major Community Plan Amendment to the Future Land Use Map from Single-family Low Density to Multi-family Medium and High Density.
Next, the City Council will have a work session and a subsequent public hearing on the Major Community Plan Amendment.
Then and only then, will the Planning and Zoning Commission discuss and vote on the zoning and development review. Council would have the final vote in the zoning and development review, if it made it that far.
Numerous citizens in attendance testified against the development. Claiming the development would harm the Jordan Road homeowners and community
The property consists of two parcels totaling 6.5 acres along the east side of Jordan Road and bisected by Quail Tail Trail and north of Wilson Canyon Road (630 Jordan Road and 500 Quail Tail Trail).
The applicant was Miramonte Homes, LLC.
Click HERE to see video of P&Z July 6 meeting..
To further clarify the process, the City has provided the following information in a Q&A format:
What is a Major Community Plan Amendment and why is it needed in the Jordan Lofts Project?
In the voter-approved Community Plan, a map displays in high level, what land use each property in Sedona is designated as. Separate from the Community Plan, there is a zoning map of what each property is legally zoned as. This zoning map outlines in detail exactly what uses are permitted on each piece of property.
In the case of Jordan Lofts, because neither the Community Plan’s map, nor the zoning matches with what the developer would like to do with the property, they must first seek to get a Major Community Plan Amendment, and then apply for a zone change and development review. The zone change can not occur without first successfully achieving a Major Community Plan Amendment. More specifically, the developer must follow this process:
- • Go through the state mandated steps and timeframe to seek a Major Community Plan Amendment. This is a public process that begins with the City’s Planning and Zoning Commission.
- • Then, if the commission votes to recommend the amendment (note they only make a recommendation to City Council), City Council will discuss and vote to approve or deny the amendment. The vote must be a 2/3 majority in favor to pass.
- • If it is denied, the developer can not move forward with the zone change and development review. However, if the amendment is approved, the developer can move to the next process to seek a zone change and development review. The project would go back to the Planning and Zoning Commission and depending on that vote, the rezoning would go to City Council for final approval.
In short, the major Community Plan amendment must be approved by City Council before the applicant can seek a zone change and development review approval.
Why is the City even willing to entertain the idea of a Major Community Plan Amendment?
With the City’s Community Plan being completed or updated once every ten years, there is a built-in, state determined process in which developers can go through, once a year, to consider a Major Community Plan Amendment. There are no guarantees, but there is a public process like described above that one can go through if they wish for a Major Community Plan Amendment on a property they either own are looking to purchase.
If City Council approves the Major Community Plan Amendment, does that mean it’s a done deal for the approval of the zone change and development review too?
No, each process is treated separately. In the Major Community Plan Amendment approval or denial phase, the developer doesn’t usually submit a fully completed design, because they are waiting to see if the amendment is approved.
During the zone change and development review process, a more detailed design is provided because City staff, the Planning and Zoning Commission and City Council are going to require it as they discuss the nitty-gritty of the project.
When City staff looks at the zone change request, they look at more than if the proposed use meets the proposed zoning. Staff considers if the request is meeting the Community Plan’s applicable goals and policies like environmental goals, housing diversity concerns, traffic issues, etc.
Terrible Idea… there goes the uptown area… Cars… WATER . APS . internet .how can it be supported
P and Z should be looked at corruption????? pay off?? some thing fishy
Good move. Congratulations to P&Z.
To the planners, I understand the graphic is basically a fill piece for space utilization. But my God, a little common sense and a few extra bucks to make it what it will be, not a block diagram that looks like WWII military base housing. You are going to the public, this isn’t Phoenix. Use your head.
Regarding housing, it certainly is needed. There was some comment that vacation rentals would be better. A rental, motel, or hotel generates about 9 car trips a day. A residence, may generate 2, and if retired people are in a unit maybe less than that.
The Forest road extension is a relief valve, and power isn’t an issue, water, less than rentals and internet, with 5G wireless, Starlink and other sources it should not be a problem. And if Suddenlink sees customers going elsewhere maybe in certain parts of the city they’ll get their act together.
We don’t need more rentals, and hold on for a big project at the light where Biddles used to be.
SEDONA CITY HALL IS SHAMEFUL, DISHONEST, AND DECEITFUL. They knew way back in January about the Lofts Project and kept it from the public for months. This is a way of allowing residents more time to organize, join together and oppose such a shocking massive zone change. MIRAMONTE Homes advertised their townhomes as “WORKFORCE HOUSING” and used all the right adjectives and nouns to pander to the City officials who fell for it and deliberately went along with their lies. Miramone says ten units would be for UPTOWN WORKERS but, no survey was ever done to ask those workers if they could afford to live there OR EVEN WANT TO. Many have roots in Cottonwood, Cornville etc. and prefer to live and shop there saying it is cheaper and many own homes there and/or have children in school and live near other family members. Miramonte said the ten units would be modelled after Pinon Lofts in West Sedona and they are very expensive, over $1400 for a studio with having to pay for TRASH, WATER, POWER AND SEWER in addition. Miramone homes would not state the cost for the ten units they brag they are setting aside until asked a second time and replied ‘”THEY WOULD BE MARKET VALUE” whatever that means. The other townhomes would require a applicant to be making $100,000 yearly. THOSE UNITS COULD BE RENTED TO ANYONE FROM OUT OF TOWN EVEN OUT OF STATE LIKE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, NEVADA, COLORDO etc. to be used as long weekenders and special holiday times and allow their friends and families to stay for a visit.
Our City considers this idea worth destroying the peaceful, calm and quaint lifestyle of the many residents nearby the Lofts site. Many of those residents have been living there for thirty plus years.
Now they will suffer the noise and air pollution of hundreds of cars a day going and coming, general noise of so many close renters, the devaluation of their homes. their streets nearby being turned into one ways (stated in the Uptown Community Focus Area Draft without any explanation except to make traffic flow better which it already does quite easily) and voted on 100% by the P&Z Commissioners without any questions about the effects on residents. The main reason for these changes Uptown and I quote were to “CREATE A BETTER EXPERIENCE FOR THE VISITORS”. That is right, us residents in Uptown no longer exist. Other changes in the Draft are horrendous and residents were not even mentioned but, greatly effected.
The Lofts will according to Miramonte Homes create near 600 cars a day within the two peak times not counting after hour shopping, running errands, visiting friends, movies etc. Jordan Roundabout already is often congested. This Draft has named Uptown Sedona “THE DESIGNATED RESORT AREA OF SEDONA”. More and more traffic invited into Uptown.
So hundreds of long term residents are thrown aside, into the trash to make room for out of towners who could afford to rent just for a holiday home and that will happen. So why are they more important than those of us who have lived here for decades. It is because 80% of City staff do not live in Sedona so have no loyalty to our town. They have no connection whatsoever to residents so don’t even care to consider them although they do publish websites where comments could be left but, that is all for show, for pretense. Since they do not live here they do not shop here, belong to any non profit organizations, or a church or any of the other groups where they would socialize even a little with residents so they sit at their desks in front of their commuters and talk within their own private groups, in another world. Even Mayor Moriarty stated after the last election at an open meting that she was very surprised while campaigning to hear people say their number one complaint was “THE CITY DID NOT CARE ABOUT US”. Jennifer Hudson and Bill Chisholm on the Council at that time said the same thing. However, this way of governing has gotten worse with the Uptown CFA DRAFT and now the Jordan Lofts. In near 41 years of living in Uptown and always following what the City does no decision has ever affected me like the Lofts one. The destruction of the peaceful lives of residents is not a consideration. THIS CITY HAS LIED TO US, BEEN DECEITFUL, THROWN US ASIDE LIKE A PIECE OF TRASH AND gone alone with the lies of Miramonte Homes that the Lofts are ”FOR WORKFORCE HOUSING. WHEN CALIFORNIANS COULD RENT FOR A HOLIDAY HOME. They say renters could bike, walk to work, to shopping, to special events, none of which are Uptown. Many workers are older and cannot even walk from the public parking lot and yet our City agrees they could walk from the end of Jordan on a cold evening, in the rain, in the snow, in a heat wave. Yet our City is removing all all parking on the East Side of Jordan for bikers and even a repair kiosk for them. Yes, even out of town bikers are more important than residents. I made many phone calls on the Lofts and spoke with employees and business owners and almost to the one their statements were “THEY ARE DESTROYING OUR CITY’, ‘THEY DON’T CARE ABOUT US’, ‘WE ARE NOTHING TO THEM’.
I have loved Sedona since I moved here when the population was 4000 and never before felt any animosity towards City Hall and I am so sad to now say it is welling up in me over the Lofts zone change which is going to happen. Never have I ever felt like this before about anything so I can just imagine how the adjacent residents feel and I live several streets away but, have always loved historic Jordan Road and now I feel anger tpwards Planning and Zoning Commissioners who voted for the zone change….perhaps we really do have Alien beings visiting us. Joan Shannon
MISTAKE; MEANT TO SAY ALLOWS RESIDENTS “LESS TIME TO ORGANIZE AND JOIN TOGETHER TO OPPOSE THE ZONE CHANGE” NOT MORE>
By the way I do live in Uptown at 315 Smith Road and know the whole history of the area I love. Ruth Jordan once invited my late husband and I to her home for coffee and cake. She was filling us with information of the “old” days. She was very sweet and said “I have coffee for Irv but, since Joan is from Australia I bought her tea”. She was proud and humbled that her home and property would become the City Heritage Museum. I am certain she would be as upset as hundreds of us are over the massive zone change to build military style barracks and to lie about them right on historic Jordan Road.