Sunset Hills residents speak out against postponed Sunset Reserve subdivision plan

Planning votes for driveway to be off Sunny Creek Lane


By Lucas Irizarry, Staff Reporter

A proposal asking for a record plat and variance approval for the Sunset Reserves subdivision was postponed by the Sunset Hills Board of Aldermen May 10, but that didn’t stop multiple residents from addressing the proposal during public comment.

The proposed subdivision is about 28.2 acres and contains 18 lots. 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. Petitioner representative David Volz said the variances were all due to steepness of grading on the site at an April 6 Planning meeting.

The main point of contention for planning commissioners and citizens during public comment was one driveway that petitioners originally placed on Robyn Road, so as not to upset the nearby 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.”

Commissioners voted 8-1 to move that driveway onto Sunny Creek, citing safety and traffic on Robyn. The Board of Aldermen would have final say on where the driveway is placed when it hears the petition.

The commission’s recommendation was much to the chagrin of Sunny Creek residents, who felt the driveway would disrupt the subdivision entrance and not be that much safer than Robyn.

“I understand that the data for accidents in this area shows that there is no significant danger along this stretch of (Robyn),” Gary Vincent, who also spoke against the change at the planning level, said. “In any construction project, from a driveway to a subdivision, it is incumbent upon the builder to cause as little an impact on neighboring property as possible. I see no reason for the builder to interfere with Sunny Creek.”

One Sunny Creek resident, Ann Zanaboni, presented a petition with 31 signatures opposing the driveway addition to Sunny Creek. Zanaboni cited issues with the subdivision median and potential traffic concerns in Sunny Creek.