Sunset Hills planning hears petition for new subdivision

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By Lucas Irizarry, Staff Reporter

The Sunset Hills Planning and Zoning Commission heard a record plat and improvement plan for a new subdivision on Robyn Road April 6.

The area is 28.195 acres and contains 18 lots. A preliminary plat was approved in March, and engineer David Volz, representing the petitioner, said it matches the record plat submitted to the commission. 

The site improvement plans feature four variances which must be approved by the Board of Aldermen. These include variances to allow the distance between Lincoln Drive and Sunset Reserve Drive to be 250 feet; to allow the right of way to be 50 feet; finished street grades to be 10 percent and to allow two cul-de-sacs to be 84 feet wide.

“All the variances we are requesting are due to the steepness of the grades on the site. By having a smaller right of way width, we can pull the houses closer and then there’s less disturbance off the side of the hill,” Volz said.

The plan features a driveway on Robyn Road instead of Sunny Creek Lane — Volz said the driveway being on Robyn is undesirable due to safety concerns, but was put there to appeal to the Sunny Creek Subdivision. 

“That’s just to satisfy the subdivision. As a planner and engineer it doesn’t make a lot of sense, but I understand it’s an existing subdivision … and they don’t want any additional driveways,” Volz said. “If I was looking at the location as a blank slate, I definitely would have put that driveway (on Sunny Creek) because I think it’s a safer location and a more natural location.”

Some commissioners felt they should take the opportunity to not add more traffic onto the low visibility area that is Robyn Road.

Sunny Creek resident Gary Vincent said he would be opposed to the driveway being on Sunny Creek because the exit onto Robyn is the safest exit, but Chairman Terry Beiter said he has never found an issue with exiting Sunny Creek.

“I used the road all the time … I never found it to be a problem, not one iota of a problem,” Beiter said. “Three other roads converge (on Robyn) and I don’t think we need more roads coming into that area.”

The commission unanimously approved the improvement plan with the condition that aldermen approved variances. The commission also approved the record plat unanimously, and a condition to add the driveway to Sunny Creek was approved 8-1, with commissioner Frank Pellegrini as the lone no vote.

Pelligrini said he wasn’t convinced accidents happen as a result of driveways on Robyn because there are driveways already on the road and he hasn’t heard of many accidents.