Archive for Thursday, January 19, 2006

Rezoning request pits faith against flexibility

January 19, 2006

The Eudora City Council will be asked to rezone property north of the Intech Business Park for the Deer Valley subdivision, an 84-acre mixed residential and commercial development.

The rezoning comes to the council with the planning commission's 4-3 recommendation for approval.

The property was given its current zoning as part of its comprehensive plan, which was updated two years ago. That exercise looks to assign logical future land uses to parcels of undeveloped land using agreed upon goals.

Long-range planning requires keeping faith and flexibility, and that is what the council's debate will be about.

Those who advocate keeping faith will argue that although there hasn't been much present interest in Eudora for industrial development, things change. To realize industrial growth, and the expanded tax base that would bring, the city has to preserve attractive land that can be realistically developed for that purpose, and few sites are more attractive than one across the street from an industrial park and within sight of a Kansas Highway 10 interchange.

Those arguing for flexibility will point out that Intech still has undeveloped lots, and that the proposed subdivision includes a commercial component that will contribute to expanding the tax base in the near future.

The Sunflower water towers, easily visible from Intech Park, offer a reminder that the environment of the K-10 corridor is changing. Moreover, movement on the South Lawrence Trafficway and a proposed Kansas Turnpike interchange north of Eudora could draw more eyes to the city.

Should the argument for flexibility prevail, the council needs to draw a line in the sand and become more dedicated to preserving well-situated property for future industrial uses.

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