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Eddie Maddock: Massive Sedona 700 Mobile Home and RV Site Rezoning Near Approval

Eddie Maddock focuses her Eye on Sedona to the plunder and destruction of El Rojo Grande Ranch in the profit versus preservation of Sedona’s ancient Indian artifacts and red rocks, irreplaceable bird and animal habitat, and possible sewage contamination of the Red Wall Limestone aquifer that supplies water to Sedona, Page Springs and surrounding communities when bulldozers arrive to clear pristine pre-settler land for 700 mobile homes and RV sites at the western gateway.

Sedona AZ (November 9, 2018)Finally the election is OVER – DONE – KAPUT – FINIS! Some are rejoicing over the outcome, others are shedding tears, but if the truth were known, is anyone NOT celebrating the conclusion of this every two year event?

That being said, what’s next on the agenda?

Well, most assuredly a hot topic is reaching a boiling point regarding a pending change of zoning for El Rojo Grande Ranch to accommodate a massive 700 unit development at the outskirts west of Sedona City limits.

It’s best described in the following letter from Karen Reid Offield:

Dear Everyone,

Many of you have driven by the beautiful El Rojo Grande Ranch at the western gateway to Sedona yet you never have visited the Ranch. To you, and all our friends, this letter and website is for you!

This website www.elrojograndesedona.com was specifically created to help save this remarkable, but forgotten gem of Sedona. As a citizen of Arizona, or a visitor on the World Wide Web, you can save it. You can ensure the ranch is preserved as a part of the future of Sedona. Yavapai County will listen to the public comments. Please write a letter. (Note instructions at end of article.)

The buyer – a multi-billion-dollar based Chicago Corporation, Equity Lifestyles (ELS) and the owner of the Sedona Shadows mobile home park is asking Yavapai County to change the zoning of the ranch to allow them to build a huge 688-unit mobile home park (628 manufactured homes/apartments and a 60 RV Park) right next to the Dry Creek Scenic Road at the western gateway to Sedona.

This website will take you on a tour of the Ranch, to see for yourself why it is so important for the Sedona Community to rally around the Ranch, as environmental stewards, and to block a zoning change that will allow the developer to bulldoze its ancient landscape, evict and destroy its rich wildlife and Indian artifacts, and leave it as a scarred example of the type of development that values profit over the preservation and conservation of the treasure that is El Rojo Grande Ranch.

We are urgently asking for your immediate help to rally community support to block this PAD re-zoning, which will replace this priceless scenic wonder with a massive ocean of roofs.

The fragile lands of El Rojo Grande Ranch will be forever harmed by pumping the water from beneath its riparian habitats to the development, and by dumping hundreds of thousands of gallons of effluent back into its creek bed each day, or by injecting that effluent into its underground aquifer. In addition to that tragedy, ELS will dispose huge amounts of surface runoff from their asphalt pavement into the riparian habitats.

The wildlife and bird riparian habitats on El Rojo Grande Ranch will be drained and parched by the massive water pumping station proposed by ELS to supply its mobile home park. ELS has yet to propose a method for disposal of all that waste, which would contaminate the Red Wall Limestone aquifer that supplies water to Page Springs and its surrounding communities.

Thanks to its past owners, most of the Ranch’s 173 acres are in the same pristine condition that early settlers in the Sedona area found it. It is still covered with ancient juniper trees, some of which are 200 years old – trees that were growing before the white man ever came into the Sedona area. It is truly a “step back in time”. Sadly, the beauty of the Ranch has been largely forgotten by those in the surrounding community.

We invite you into this website www.elrojogradesedona.com to enjoy the photographs of its marvelous park, its wedding sites, its community gathering spots, and its equestrian facilities which was built on the 173 acres for the public to enjoy by riding on its beautiful acreage, and onto the beautiful Forest Service land that surrounds it.

We invite you to read about the hundreds of species of birds, amphibians, reptiles, mammals, and plants that call its red rock and riparian habitat their home. In doing so, you will learn about the watershed, and the great riparian corridor in Northern Arizona which is currently under great stress, and in danger of being lost by the animals and plants who live here.

To save the Ranch we must first make people in the Sedona area and all neighboring communities and our global friends aware of its existence, its beauty, and its potential contribution to Sedona, as a marvelous blessing for future of our residents and visitors to Sedona and the Northern Arizona region where Old West Dreams live on.

El Rojo Grande Ranch was built to be a horse and cattle ranch. It was, nearly 26 years ago, built to be a working ranch surrounded on three sides by United States Forest Service lands – spectacular and welcoming to visitors from around the world.

Please protect the land, and not allow an inappropriate development to proceed.

Please write a letter to Yavapai County, and say “Please do not change the zoning and allow this ugly and unfortunate development to proceed.”

Please do not allow El Rojo Grande Ranch to become a symbol of what unrestrained development can do in our internationally known center of natural beauty. By allowing this microcosm of Sedona to be bulldozed and turned into a sprawling ocean of mobile homes, we will be showing the entire world that our values of conservation and sustainability are only words – devoid of actions.

The sellers have said themselves that this Ranch is magical! The International Sotheby’s has described this Ranch as pristine and magical! Let’s not let its magic be destroyed by bulldozers, and replaced by a sea of mobile home roofs. Please make this happen, and support – NO CHANGE IN ZONING!

Write a letter today! Randy Garrison, Yavapai County Supervisor, is in change again of these proceedings along with the county commissioners and staff.

Here is mine which you are welcome to cut and paste – click on this link. All letters are due by December 11, 2018.

Thank you!
Karin Reid Offield

 

Read www.SedonaEye.com for daily news and interactive views!

159 Comments

  1. @Freedy L says:

    So you rent to vacation here in Sedona and this is what’s on your mind Freddy.. WOW You must be a real FUN guy.. LOL

  2. Freddy Lashchenko says:

    To the person who took time to read and then comment on my first comment @Freedy L(?) I wish to thank you. The reason my wife and I are vacation renters is because we wanted to test the waters to find out if Sedona would be a suitable place for retirement. Obviously based on our observations it is NOT and further, we will NOT be returning as tourists either nor will we recommend it to friends. Any more comments or questions?

  3. Response to Freddy L says:

    Hay Freddy:

    Sorry but the only ones who may give a darn or not if you ever come back to Sedona are all (or about 20) on SedonaEye.

  4. @Freddy L says:

    Oh you won’t be back?
    Wow what a lose for Sedona
    Bye bye…continue on with your exciting life worrying about wastewater while on vacation.

  5. erg says:

    Hi all, there has been a lot of clarification recently on issues. the Website http://www.elrojograndesedona.com is updated daily and we have only 7 days left for LETTERS and EMAILS !!

    Please skip the above conversations in this blog, for now, and go directly to the website – West Sedona and the Riparian Corridor of Dry Creek, part of the Arizona Protected Waterway and Dry Creek Scenic Road depends upon you all helping.

    http://www.elrojograndesedona.com

    Here are the FINAL 6 Points to include in your letters. If you think your letter is a strong enough letter to be placed on the website, cc and email the letter to: elrojogranderanchinsedona@gmail.com
    TO ADDRESS:
    1. Impact on surrounding properties.
    2. Impact on traffic.
    3. Conformance to development standards.
    4. Maintaining the character of the neighborhood.
    5. Preservation of safety and welfare.
    6. Consistency with the comprehensive plan.

    DO NOT ADDRESS : What the Commission will not be look at:
    1. Personality of the applicant.
    2. Questions concerning tech issues.
    3. Water availability.
    4. Financial gain or hardship.
    5. Economic development.
    6. Viability of the project.
    7. Setting precedence.
    8. CC&R requirements.”(What Are Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions (CC&Rs)? The CC&Rs are the rules of your neighborhood. They describe the requirements and limitations about what you can do with your property. The goal of the CC&Rs is to protect, preserve, and enhance property values in the community. Most of the time, the rules make sense and are easy to accept.

    Thank you, Karin Reid Offield

  6. ERG says:

    From our Voices in the Community link on elrojograndesedona.com website this letter is posted. http://elrojograndesedona.com/important-voices-letters/

    PROGNOSIS: IMMINENT HEART ATTACK

    Imagine the Greater Sedona area as a giant body with the heart portion outlined by the Ranger Road, the “Y” and Schnebly Road roundabouts. Now imagine that the primary arteries of the heart are SR89a heading west, SR89a heading north and SR179 heading south. This area has been diagnosed with “congestive heart failure.” At many times during the day, at least one of these roundabouts is afflicted with major traffic congestion, either entering or leaving the Sedona area.

    The “Sedona in Motion” Study has prescribed several “treatments” to mitigate the congestion. Arterial roadways, reduced marketing of Sedona at peak tourist times, transit expansion and additional parking opportunities are just a few of the “treatments” that have been prescribed. We all know that the “treatments” that have been recommended are not going to be a permanent cure. Traffic congestion is a complex problem, particularly in a small city that is surrounded by a spectacular national forest and attracts an increasing number of visitors every year. We are just delaying the imminent “heart attack.”

    Exacerbating the congestion problem are the various “blood clots” that are accumulating in all three of the arteries. To the south in the Village of Oak Creek, the Element hotel project located on the factory outlet site will be adding approximately 125 rooms. Directly to the south, the Hilton Garden Inn project is proposing approximately 175 rooms. To the north, the area in Oak Creek Canyon is being overwhelmed by industrial scale tourism. To the west, the Marriott Courtyard has opened 121 rooms and an additional 90 rooms were recently approved for a Residence Inn project next door to the Courtyard.

    Unquestionably, the most impactful threat is the ELS corporation’s proposal of a 650-space manufactured home park that would be located 2.5 miles west of Sedona on the former 177 acre El Rojo Grande Ranch site. This property is located adjacent to the Sedona Pines/Shadows neighborhood. The future traffic impacts to Sedona are mind-boggling. This development is projected to increase the population that will be utilizing Sedona services by approximately 13%!

    So, what can we do? Obviously, there is no simple answer. We take one bite at a time, and the Sedona in Motion plan is a good start. We can also adamantly oppose some land trades/sales and developments that will have a detrimental impact on traffic congestion. In some cases, where zoning is already in place, developers have the right to build within the guidelines of the current zoning. In other cases, when a developer is seeking a zoning change that will increase density that will consequently make a significant contribution to traffic congestion, we can oppose the zone change.

    Such is the case with the proposed El Rojo Grande development. Even though this property is not within the Sedona city limits, residents of Yavapai County have a voice in zoning and land development decisions. In my opinion, the proposed manufactured home development on the El Rojo Grande Ranch is a worst-case scenario for this pristine land, which is the western gateway to Sedona.

    Shockingly, the County does not appear to take the traffic impacts of this development on the City of Sedona as part of the criteria that they consider when making a decision on granting a zone change! A county official has stated that the primary consideration for granting the zone change will be the support or opposition of the adjacent neighbors to the development.

    This is your opportunity to get involved with preventing the “imminent heart attack” of traffic congestion. Go online and get educated about the issue at the ElRojoGrandeSedona.com website. Use the information in the letters on the website to contact the County Planning and Zoning Commissioners and Supervisors and voice your opposition. Letters should be sent to tammy.dewitt@yavapai.us. Show up at the meetings that are scheduled. Time is running out.

    Rob Adams
    Sedona Mayor 2008 – 2014
    Change is inevitable. We have a choice in the outcome of change

    Please write your letters today ERG

  7. Pierre, Sedona says:

    @ERG A testimonial from former Mayor Rob Adams? The man who was responsible for putting in motion the vile no-bid advertising contract with the chamber when he was on City Council? IMO he has a helluva lot of nerve saying one word about development outside City Limits when he was one who glowed with pleasure when the deal was made with the Chamber & Lovely Jenn to promote only their members, most of whom are outside City Limits and don’t contribute to the municipality tax base.

    For that reason alone – no way no how – would we go against Yavapai County and the developer to seek zone change for yet another monster development. Only difference is this time it’s outside city limits. Because Rob Adams was a public figure at the time that the deal was made w/the chamber – there should be no reason for the Sedona Eye editor who likes to cover city staff and city council asses to delete his name.

  8. AND A CELL TOWER ON A FAKE TREE!! says:

    Please plan to attend this meeting.

    In response to following email listed below I would like to suggest that you do write:

    Because the YC wireless ordinance is no longer relevant and outdated , thanks in large part to our corporate loving Gov.Ducey and the wireless carrier mouthpiece, the FCC, Yavapai County Development Services no longer has written guidelines to enable the commisioners to make a qualified decision or recommendation.
    They are now unqualified to make a decision or recommendation to the Supervisors regarding wireless. Period.

    They must update the ordinance first.
    How’s that?

    The present ordinances of Yavapai County regarding wireless communications are rarely enforced, if ever, no matter what non compliance item a resident brings to their attention.
    Existing structures, towers and antenna are not monitored for compliance ever. They have an ordinance for that too. It’s just a visual lip service, in my opinion.

    In my opinion, this new tower will be erected for smart meter and chipped items data collection for the benefit of the carrier.
    This will be done at the expense of public health and safety especially if it is 5g and so low to the ground. Keeping in mind, this height is more profitable for the carrier and it is all about them after all, in my opinion.

    In my opinion, ATT has always had an inferior product here for cell service after being in the cell phone business since 1996 and they could have cared less about your cell service or video games. I would recommend dropping ATT and using a more residential friendly service.

    There are studies which show a 30% increased chance of illness within 1500 feet of a tower, that includes cancer. That is on lower 3 and 4 g. 5g is more dangerous according to studies.

    This microwave radiation will enter these metal structures and bounce around thoughout the inside of the home and timeshare as well as coming in through the wiring system and the smart meter. I feel this is the most dangerous place the live and many residents are stuck there with rising lot fees and no way out.

    Attack the ordinance. Delay the decision.

    The email in part:
    Still time to write letters( before Monday) and show up at the Dec. 20th P&Z meeting to give your comments.
    PLEASE PASS this info on to others on your email lists.

    CELL TOWER ALERT
    At Sedona Pines Resort
    This will benefit AT&T customers only!

    AT&T is back with a proposal to place an 80 foot tall cell tower, disguised as a broad leaf tree, in the parking lot between Red Moon Drive and Sedona Pines Resort office/ Bella Vita Restaurant.

    Sprint already has a cell tower inside the Tall Flagpole at Sedona Pines.

    AT&T is asking for a Wireless Facility Use Permit from Yavapai County. If you have concerns about the construction of this cell tower so close to our homes, please write to your County Officials NOW. The Cell Tower construction will be considered at the same P&Z meeting as the Rojo Grande Ranch development (688 mobile homes near Sedona Pines)

    Please ATTEND Dec. 20THPlanning and Zoning Commission meeting
    10 S. 6THstreet, Administrative Annex
    Cottonwood. 9am
    Public comments will be taken at this meeting, but write your letters NOW!

    YAVAPAI COUNTY PLANNING AND ZONING ORDINANCE plainly states the following regulations that include restrictions, which the planned location for this 80-foot tall cell tower seems to violate (You could use these to structure your comments:)

    1. No new wireless communication facilities within one thousand feet (1,000 ft) of any residences, including single and multiple family residences and residential facilities.
    (A number of rental cottages at Sedona Pines, plus many homes in Sedona Shadows and other private residences are within 1,000 feet or very close to it.)

    2. No new wireless communication facilities shall be installed within unique or scenic areas/sites identified within community plan areas: for example, the Red Rock/Dry Creek Community Plan Conservation-Preservation District. (This location is within that district.)

    3. (A similar concern)No new wireless communication facilities shall be installed in any area that may mar mountain views, or visually sensitive areas.

    4. Applicant shall make a concerted effort to incorporate the community suggestions for impact mitigation generated by the meetings and describe the efforts in the application. (Only one public meeting was held and none of the 300 + residents in Sedona Shadows were notified and therefore very few people were present)

    5. A lesser preferred facility type may be permitted only if the applicant presents substantial evidence to show that it will have a lesser visual impact than the use of more preferred facilities.
    More preferred is co-location (Big Flagpole at Sedona Pines is already a tower)

    Federal Regulations PROHIBIT ruling against a cell tower on the basis of Health Concerns,
    SO.stress that Yavapai County has Strong Regulations Already in place.

    What our County Officials must do is ENFORCE our Planning and Zoning Ordinance!

    Write your Letter today. Make it simple.

    Be sure to sign your letters with your Name and Address. It is VERY important that they know you Live nearby.
    Put RE: Sedona Pines Cell Tower in the subject line

    No phone calls, they don’t count.

    To give your comments the greatest chance of having an impact: Send letters to all County Officials, including:

    Yavapai County Development Services — Tammy DeWitt, Senior Planner:email: tammy.dewitt@yavapai.us, or mail to

    Yavapai County Board of Supervisors:
    Rowle P. Simmons, District 1 email:web.bos.district1@yavapai.us
    Thomas Thurman, District 2 email:web.bos.district2@yavapai.us
    Randy Garrison, District 3 email: web.bos.district3@yavapai.us
    Craig L. Brown, District 4 email: web.bos.district4@yavapai.us
    Jack R. Smith, District 5 email: web.bos.district5@yavapai.us

  9. Hava Derby says:

    Greetings dear Editor..Thank you so much for shining a light on the pending Rojo Grande development. We think this Facebook Live could be helpful for your readers. Thank you for your considerations. Best regards, Hava

    https://www.facebook.com/MixtressHava/videos/10155606285512827/

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