Wednesday, March 15, 2006

East Camelback neighborhood issues still in flux; public meeting scheduled for March 30

[Source: Paul Barnes, Neighorhood Coalition of Greater Phoenix] -- On September 9, 2005, the Phoenix City Council approved developer sponsored changes to The Plan which many felt destroyed its vision, scrapped its established development limits which were to remain firm until 2015, and made a mockery of citizen planning via the district village planning committee process. One result was that developers such as Trump/Bayrock could build to very substantial increases in height without going through a rezoning process.

A political organization called P’OED (“People Organized Exercising Democracy”) formed and waged a successful referendum battle. Twice the required number of signatures (9,923) were turned in. As a result of the successful referendum drive, the City Council repealed its September vote, rather than submitting the issue to a city-wide vote on the March 14 ballot along with the seven Bond Propositions.

Continuing to show its favoritism to developers, the Phoenix Planning Commission waived the one year waiting requirement and started the whole review process all over again at the same development limits it supported in September 2005 (i.e. height limits of 190’ without going through a rezoning process). Trump is gone, but all the other developers are still seeking substantial increases in height to those currently allowed in The Plan. The Steering Committee of the Referendum effort is involved in a continuing mediation effort with the largest of these developers under the sponsorship of the City Council to explore resolving their differences. It is not possible to predict what degree of success, if any, will be achieved under this process.

The Neighborhood Coalition of Greater Phoenix encourages interested persons to attend the following community meeting on The Plan:

  • Thursday, March 30 at 6 p.m.
  • City Council Chambers at 200 W. Jefferson (round building behind old City Hall Building)
  • Parking: City garage on 4th Ave. As you are heading west on Washington, turn left on 4th Ave. and immediately turn left into garage.

If you have any questions, contact Paul Barnes, Neighborhood Coalition of Greater Phoenix, by e-mail or phone: 602-840-1579.