Friday, August 28, 2009


We have taken a huge step in securing the character of our neighborhoods, collectively known as "Area 1".

Area 1 is truly a unique area. Approximately 60% of the land is presently occupied, with rural lots of mostly one dwelling per 2.5 acres, and some with 1 dwelling per acre. It is a traditional rural area, with deep arroyos, ridgelines, and hundreds of acres of scenic land in the foothills west of the City.

The original Settlement Agreement stipulated, in section 2.c "Area 1 shall be annexed but the Rural Residential zoning prevalent in the area shall be respected by the City following annexation and urban densities shall not be established within Area 1 during the term of this agreement." The City Planning Commission and City Council have endorsed urban densities as a core of their view of Urban Planning, setting the stage for potential conflicts with the existing rural neighborhoods in Area 1.

Unfortunately, we became afraid that the many of the good intentions of the Settlement Agreement were coming apart as we attended various meetings held by the City and the County to formally adopt exactly what "Rural Residential Zoning" would be. It was looking like we would be zoned for 3 units per acre, before bonus densities were factored in.

A final recommendation was scheduled for Thursday by the Extraterritorial Land Use Authority (ELUA). I am extremely gratified to report that the ELUA listened intently to the Area 1 Residents' concerns, and adopted an alternative zoning more in line with the existing rural character of the neighborhoods of 1 unit per acre, with a dedicated Community Planning process to follow.

Dozens of Area 1 homeowners join me in thanking County Commissioners Harry Montoya, Michael Anaya, Virginia Vigil, Kathy Holian, and City Councilors Miguel Chavez and Carmichael Dominguez. The community of Area 1 residents must follow through with the work necessary to complete a Community Plan. We will be asking for your and your neighbors support in the coming months. There will be challenges as Area 1 is brought into the City, but the members of ELUA have provided a good framework for the creation of a successful integration.


  1. Much praise to you and your neighborhood for this wonderful
    accomplishment! It is reassuring to know that well-informed and
    committed citizens can still have an effect on government policies. And
    yes, please keep us informed as you move through the planning process.

    Thank you for all of your efforts -- this serves all neighborhoods in
    the community.

  2. Thank you for all your efforts on our behalf

  3. Thank you all so much for everything you have done and continue to do! It still feels a little like a dream