City of Reno
Nevada

Staff Report
8831

Staff Report (For Possible Action): Case Nos. LDC17-00008 and LDC17-00009 (StoneGate Master Plan and PUD Zoning Map Amendments) Request to establish a Planned Unit Development (PUD) on a site that is ±1,737.9 acres in size that includes ±5,000 residential units, associated public facilities, open space and nonresidential development. This request includes: 1) a Master Plan Amendment from ±1,034.93 acres of Industrial, ±238.19 acres of Unincorporated Transition, ±412.34 acres of Single Family Residential and ±52.44 acres of Urban Residential/Commercial to ±41.2 acres of Industrial, ±658.2 acres of Mixed Residential, ±215.2 acres of Urban Residential/Commercial, ±338.1 acres of Single Family Residential and ±485.2 acres of Parks/Recreation/Open Space; 2) a zoning map amendment from ±1,034.93 acres of Industrial Commercial (IC), ±118.59 acres of Unincorporated Transition-40 Acres (UT40), ±412.34 acres of Large Lot Residential - 1 acre (LLR1), ±52.44 acres of Arterial Commercial (AC), and ±119.6 acres of Open Space (OS) to Planned Unit Development (PUD); and 3) tentative approval of the associated PUD Handbook. Four parcels totaling ±1,378 acres in size are located southwest of the US-395/White Lake Parkway interchange, south of the US-395/Frontage Road and east of Sto Lat Lane. Two parcels totaling ±359.90 acres in size are located on the northwest side of the intersection of US-395 and White Lake Parkway. This request is considered a Project of Regional Significance for: (a) housing (exceeds 625 units), (b) traffic (exceeds 6,250 average daily trips), (c) water use (exceeds 625 acre feet per year), (d) sewage (exceeds 187,500 gallons per day), (e) student population (exceeds 325 students) and (f) employment (exceeds 938 employees).

Information

Department:Community Development - Planning & EngineeringSponsors:
Category:AmendmentWards:Ward 4

Recommendation and Proposed Motion

Recommendation:  The Planning Commission recommends Council adopt the requested Master Plan amendment by resolution and zoning map amendment by ordinance and approve the tentative Planned Unit Development (PUD) Handbook by Minute Order, subject to Truckee Meadows Regional Planning Commission determination that the request is in conformance with the Truckee Meadows Regional Plan.

 

Proposed Motion:  I move to uphold the recommendation of the Planning Commission.

 

Master Plan Amendment

 

I move to adopt Resolution No. ____________.

 

Zoning Map Amendment

 

First Reading:  I move to refer Bill No. __________ for a second reading and adoption.

 

Staff Report Formal Body

Summary:  This request includes a Master Plan amendment, zoning map amendment and tentative approval of a Planned Unit Development Handbook (PUD HB) (Exhibit 1) for a site approximately 1,737.9 acres in size.  The request proposes a maximum of 5,000 dwelling units with a gross density of 2.88 dwelling units per acre (du/ac).  Approximately 80,000 square feet of non residential (office, commercial, restaurant) and community center uses are proposed within the portion of the PUD boundary located south of US 395.  Commercial and industrial designations are proposed on the north side of US 395.  The request includes ±435 acres of common open space; and ±50 acres for parks.

 

The Reno Planning Commission held public hearings on June 29, August 30, and September 20, 2017, in order to review the proposal, hear staff and applicant presentations, public comment and to receive input from various City of Reno departments and other agencies.  Previous Planning Commission staff reports (Attachment A) and associated meeting minutes are attached to this report.

 

Revised Handbook Appendices were submitted with the October 30, 2017 revision and are included as Exhibits A through H of this report.  The appendices for the StoneGate PUD HB include studies for Conceptual Drainage, Conceptual Sewer, Conceptual Water, Geotechnical Research, Traffic Impact Study, Cultural Resources Review and Plant List for Residential Front Yards with the respective names.

 

A full staff analysis of the Reno Master Plan policies, goals and objectives is included in the Planning Commission staff report (Attachment A). The applicant has proposed land designations within the PUD HB which are consistent with the current Master Plan (Exhibit I), and which are anticipated to translate to the proposed ReImagine Reno Master Plan Land Use designations (Exhibit J).   The applicant addressed housing diversity by proposing density ranges within the PUD HB that were consistent with the density ranges described in the underlying Master Plan Land Use designations.  Density ranges within the proposed PUD are between one and 30 dwelling units per acre.  The Multifamily PUD Land Use designation is intended to accommodate development that ranges from 21 and 30 du/ac.  This designation most readily lends itself to single family attached and multifamily development, but could include single family detached residential uses within the Multi-family designation as long as the project is able to meet minimum density requirements.  Densities for residential development within the Town Center or Neighborhood Center are required to be between 21 and 30 du/ac.  The SF4, SF6 and LLR-1 PUD land use categories allow residential density ranges between one and 21 du/ac. 

 

Draft Parks and Fire Department agreements were not available at the time this staff report was prepared. It is anticipated that the City Council will have an opportunity to review the draft agreement language for possible direction to staff.  The PUD HB requires that these agreements be approved by the City Council prior to Handbook certification.

 

Background:  At the June 29, 2017 Reno Planning Commission meeting, based on information and proposed materials associated to the StoneGate request at that time, staff forwarded a recommendation to the Planning Commission for denial of the Master Plan amendment, zoning map amendment and PUD HB.  The proposal included a request to replace approximately 823 acres of industrial zoned property with primarily single family residential uses.  Staff outlined concerns that the request was not in a complete state for a comprehensive evaluation, and that the proposed PUD HB land uses did not conform to the requested Master Plan Land Use designations.  Additionally, the proposed development standards provided limited diversity in housing types and encroached upon environmentally sensitive areas without plans for mitigation.  These sensitive areas include existing forested areas, areas of 30 percent or greater slopes, and land use categories that abutted railroad and/or power line corridors.  The PUD HB proposed by the applicant at the June 29, 2017 public hearing contemplated utilizing property that was located on the north side of US 395 which fell outside of the PUD boundary.  This area had been identified for drainage, employment opportunities, a high school, and a fire station.  Based on discussion at the public hearing, the Planning Commission voted to continue the public hearing to August 30, 2017 in order to allow the applicant to work through these significant staff concerns

 

Based on multiple coordination meetings with City staff and the applicant, many of the issues identified at the June 29, 2017 Planning Commission meeting were resolved.  On August 7, 2017, the applicant submitted a revised proposal that: incorporated approximately 360 acres of land on the north side of US 395 into the PUD boundary, identified as the Town Center phase; modified the proposed Master Plan Land Uses designations to provide more diversity of land use types; and revised the PUD HB Land Uses to be consistent with the requested Master Plan Land Use designations.  While many of the issues previously identified had been sufficiently addressed, the August 30, 2017 staff report included a redlined PUD HB and modified engineering and planning conditions that were recommended to be incorporated into the PUD HB. 

 

During the Planning Commission public hearing process for this request, members of the public expressed concerns related to traffic, drainage and flooding issues, sewer and treated effluent facilities, stormwater collection and reuse, wildlife conservation, street design, frontage road access and provision of police and fire services.  These concerns were addressed in the August 30, 2017 staff report and through the proposed PUD HB with the incorporation of recommended conditions associated with Exhibits 2 and 3.  Outstanding items for further discussion included the need for minimum requirements in the PUD HB to ensure that the project would provide for housing diversity; a proposed street design that met City of Reno standards; traffic mitigation; and a minimum parcel size to be included in the applicant’s request for the establishment of “Super Pad Parcels”.  The sign standards contained in the PUD HB were discussed as an item that needed further refinement.  The Planning Commission concluded the August 30, 2017 discussion by requesting that the applicant bring forward an updated Planned Unit Development Handbook in a finished format for consideration at the September 20, 2017 Planning Commission meeting. 

 

At the September 20, 2017 Planning Commission meeting, the Planning Commission reviewed a PUD HB submitted on September 8, 2017 that further addressed formatting issues and previously recommended modifications.  Outstanding unresolved items not completely addressed with the September 8, 2017 PUD HB submittal included the establishment of minimum requirements within the PUD HB to require housing diversity, street design standards, traffic concerns and Super Pad minimum size requirements.  The September 20, 2017 supplemental memo to the Planning Commission described the outstanding issues and included revised Exhibits 2 and 3 that included recommended conditions that staff stated were necessary in order for staff to recommend approval of the Master Plan amendment, the PUD Zoning Map amendment, and tentative PUD HB requests.

 

Discussion:

 

Land Use Table - The Planning Commission made additional modifications to the PUD HB with regard to the list of allowed uses within the Town Center.  The applicant has incorporated the changes into the PUD HB and the specific modifications are outlined in the redlined Exhibit 3 attached to this staff report.  The proposed PUD HB Land Use Table, Temporary Uses on PUD HB Page 41, states that all temporary uses shall comply with RMC.  Page 121 of the PUD HB contemplates temporary uses such as water storage and material processing and stockpiles which includes rock crushing.  These proposed temporary uses should be listed in the Temporary Uses section of the PUD HB Land Use Table and the requested standards or requirements should be included in the additional requirements section of the PUD HB.  Staff has concerns regarding 24 hour operations of material processing and rock crushing activities.  Standards should be included that require hauling routes and restricted crushing activities to between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. in order to ensure residents within the area are not negatively impacted by these activities.

 

Street Design – The revised PUD HB beginning on Page 80 contains modifications to the proposed street sections based on the Planning Commission’s recommendation as described in Exhibit 2.  The applicant has proposed non-standard street sections that include drainage swales as opposed to the standard curb and gutter design.  The applicant has stated that the project will also require underground storm drainage infrastructure to capture larger storm event flows.  Details regarding location, design and maintenance of planned storm drainage infrastructure have been identified in the PUD HB standards.  While the proposed street sections do not meet the Public Works Design Manual standards for street design, the applicant has identified American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) compliant clear zones and has incorporated enhanced landscape standards to support the ReLEAF Reno initiative

 

Traffic – The September 20, 2017 Planning Commission staff report included Exhibit 2, Condition No. 3 that recommended that StoneGate be developed in a manner in which project construction phasing will be concurrent with regional and Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) roadway improvements to support traffic generated by StoneGate (Exhibit K).  There are currently congestion issues on southbound US 395 during the A.M. peak hours and northbound during the P.M. peak hours.  The City of Reno cannot require a developer to pay for or to construct improvements to NDOT right-of-way infrastructure. However, approval of development may be required to occur subsequent to necessary capacity improvements so new development does not further exacerbate congestion on the NDOT system.  The applicant provided staff with a timeline that anticipated that each of the phases within StoneGate would be developed in relation to planned freeway and regional roadway improvements.  In order to ensure that a responsible development pattern occurs with relation to traffic generated by the applicant’s proposal for a PUD that will result in a maximum of 5,000 homes, a high school, and associated commercial development, staff proposed Condition No. 3 as part of the recommended Engineering conditions outlined in Exhibit 2. 

 

The Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) is currently in the process of conducting public outreach and in the beginning stage of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) environmental process for the I-580/I-80 system-to-system interchange (Spaghetti Bowl) study.  The project goals include an accelerated NEPA assessment (anticipated to be complete by mid-2020).  Once the NEPA process is complete, possible options to achieve congestion relief will be identified.  At this time, NDOT has not finalized a construction timeline or funding schedule for improvements and likely will not until the NEPA process is complete.  Additional information related to the NDOT Spaghetti Bowl study can be found on the NDOT website http://ndotspaghettibowl.com/.

 

Exhibit 2 of this report reflects the Planning Commission’s recommendation to remove Condition No. 3 based on the Planning Commission’s inability to directly tie the traffic generated by StoneGate to congestion issues within the North Valleys. In order to address traffic impacts as they relate to this request, staff recommends that the condition be incorporated into the PUD HB if the project is approved.

 

Super Pad ParcelsIn order to expedite the time that it takes to subdivide land, the applicant has requested to deviate from the normal City of Reno mapping process.  Typically, a parcel may be subdivided into four parcels and subsequent subdivision of the resultant parcels within five years of the recorded parcel map is processed through a tentative and final map process.  The applicant has proposed the creation of Super Pad Parcels by recordation of multiple parcel maps as discussed in the Implementation section of the PUD HB beginning on Page 3.  Staff has continually expressed concerns related to the proposed subsequent subdivision of land by a series of parcel maps as this request would include infrastructure, roadway alignment, and environmental considerations such as drainageways and topography that should be reviewed at a comprehensive project level.  In order to ensure efficient use of staff resources during the review process, staff had recommended a minimum Super Pad Parcel size of nine acres, with exceptions for certain parcels such as common area, future rights-of-way, public facility or utility parcels, and additional exceptions as noted in the Super Pad Parcels section on Page 4 of the October 30, 2017 PUD HB.  The Planning Commission voted to accept the minimum Super Pad size with the exceptions provided during the September 20, 2017 hearing.

 

Fire and Police Services:  Page 26 of the PUD HB (Exhibit 1) contains provisions for temporary and permanent public safety facilities.  The Planning Commission had questions regarding the provision of necessary emergency response vehicles.  The applicant stated that their preference is to work through the specific issues related to equipment through a Fire Services Agreement.  Staff clarified that a Fire Services Agreement would be required to be approved by the City Council prior to the certification of the PUD HB.  The PUD HB includes language specific to timing for the temporary and permanent stations to be constructed and further clarifies that, based on staff’s recommendation, the permanent station is required to be located on the south side of US 395, within Phase 1. 

 

The applicant has expressed interest in sharing the costs associated with the Permanent Fire Station with future development.  At this time, there is no method for provision of shared costs to construct and equip the fire station that will be necessary to serve StoneGate, therefore, the PUD HB indicates that the applicant will be responsible for construction and dedication of the permanent fire station site prior to the issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy for the 1,700th dwelling unit within StoneGate.  More details will be forthcoming with the development of a Public Services Agreement for City Council review and possible approval should the PUD HB be approved.  In order to ensure sufficient emergency services and equipment are available to serve the residents and business operators within StoneGate, staff would recommend that the PUD HB define the responsibilities of the Master Developer, including provisions for a Type I structure engine and a Type III brush engine.  These engines are minimum requirements for provision of fire department services in this area.

 

Sanitary Sewer:  Public sanitary sewer and reclaimed water facilities are not currently in place to serve the development.  Due to the close proximity of the Cold Springs Water Reclamation Facility (CSWRF), Washoe County Department of Water Resources (WCDWR) should be the public purveyor of sanitary sewer and reclaimed water service.  CSWRF is located approximately four miles north of the site.  Page 20 of the PUD HB states that the Master Developer will be responsible for construction of all necessary on and off-site backbone infrastructure prior to the issuance of the first Certificate of Occupancy within each phase.  Expansion of this facility to accommodate the development is feasible and will need to be funded by the Master Developer for its proportionate share of those costs.  These improvements will be required to meet all Washoe County standards as detailed in the MOU and City/County joint agreement.

 

Water Services:  The applicant has provided a conceptual water report for the PUD.  The project is anticipated to require approximately 2,248,645 gallons per day (GPD) for both residential and non-residential uses.  This equates to approximately 2,520 acre-feet of water per year.  Since the project site does not have an available water supply to provide water service to the site, the applicant will be required to purchase adequate water rights on the open market to dedicate to the water purveyor.  Currently, there are approximately 8,000 acre-feet of water available for purchase within the basin which serves the project site from the Fish Springs groundwater system.  This water is available on a first come, first served basis. 

 

All on-site and off-site water supply infrastructure shall be constructed by the Master Developer to serve the project.  There are two existing off-site water service providers:

 

1.      Truckee Meadows Water Authority (TMWA), a municipal water company, which has water infrastructure available to tie to in the vicinity of North Virginia Street and Lemmon Drive; and 

2.      Great Basin Water Company (GBWC) (formerly Utilities Incorporated) that is regulated by the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN), and currently provides water service to Cold Springs.

 

Page 18 of the PUD HB sets forth that the water supply for the StoneGate development will be provided by TMWA.  Connections to the TMWA system will require construction of a new off-site water transmission main by the Master Developer parallel to US 395.  The transmission main would be constructed within existing right-of-way fronting North Virginia Street and extend approximately six miles in length from Lemmon Drive to the project site.  A connection between the TMWA supply and the GBWC system should be completed, which will provide redundancy to the StoneGate water system.  In addition to the TMWA and GBWC water supply, the applicant may have irrigation water rights associated with the historic ranching operations on the site.  These irrigation water rights would need to be proven by the State Engineer’s Office prior to use in the proposed water infrastructure system.  The proposed water supply infrastructure will be required to be designed and constructed to meet TMWA standards.  The StoneGate project area shall be required to be annexed into the water purveyor’s service territory. 

 

Parks:  The applicant has identified a minimum of 50 acres for parks and trail systems throughout the development.  The applicant has proposed use of Residential Construction Tax (RCT) to be utilized for the construction of the parks and trail systems (PUD HB Page 12).  During the public hearing process, staff identified a need for regional fields within the North Valleys.  It should be noted that use of RCT funds within the StoneGate development may compete with more regional needs for parks facilities.  It is recommended that the PUD HB include minimum requirements for flat fields within StoneGate if RCT is proposed to be utilized by the applicant.  In order for the applicant to utilize RCT funds, an agreement between the City of Reno and the Master Developer will be required that details the applicant’s ability to utilize RCT.  Prior to the applicant’s request to utilize RCT funds, an agreement must be prepared meeting all of the criteria identified in the PUD HB which must be approved by the Reno City Council.

 

Signs:  The applicant had proposed project entry signs with eight foot tall letters.  At the Planning Commission meeting, staff provided a scaled version of the applicant’s artistic rendering of the entry monument sign (Exhibit L).  The Primary and Secondary Gateway sign heights and sign area square footages contained in the PUD HB are a result of the Planning Commission’s desire for signs to be more compatible with the surrounding area.  The Planning Commission further limited the maximum height of the proposed freestanding sign within the Industrial portion of the Town Center from the applicant’s proposed 25 feet to 15 feet tall.  The Signs section of the PUD HB beginning on Page 50 reflects the Planning Commission’s recommendation for sign square footage and height. 

 

Planning Commission Recommendation to City Council:  The applicant has submitted a revised Planned Unit Development Handbook (Exhibit 1), dated October 30, 2017 that has been updated to reflect modifications that were discussed at the September 20, 2017 Planning Commission meeting.  Engineering recommended conditions for incorporation into the PUD HB (Exhibit 2) and Planning recommended conditions are outlined in Exhibit 3 as attached to this reportExhibits 2 and 3 reflect the Planning Commission’s modifications to the exhibits provided by staff at the September 20, 2017 Planning Commission meeting.  The Planning Commission recommends the City Council approve the requested Master Plan and zoning map amendments and further recommends the Council approve the tentative StoneGate PUD HB.

 

Advisory Commission Votes:  At the August 30, 2017 Planning Commission meeting, Commissioner Marshall provided a disclosure and recusal regarding all Planning Commission actions related to this request.  The following reflects the vote for each of the requested items associated with this request: 1) Master Plan amendment: five in favor and one opposed; 2) zoning map amendment:  five in favor and one opposed; 3) tentative approval of the PUD HB: six in favor, none opposed.

 

Financial Implications:  None at this time.

 

Legal Implications:  Legal review completed for compliance with City procedures and Nevada Law.

 

Master Plan Considerations: Below are the Planning Commission and City Council Considerations for a Master Plan Amendment:

 

For the Planning Commission:

 

(a)              Bears relation to the planning and physical development of the City; and

 

(b)              Is so prepared that it may be adopted by the City Council as a basis for the physical development of the City.

 

For the City Council:

 

a.              As may be applied practically to the physical development of the City for a reasonable period next ensuing will:

 

1.               Serve as a pattern and guide for that kind of orderly physical growth and development of the City which will cause the least amount of natural resource impairment;

 

2.               Conform to the adopted population plan and ensure an adequate supply of housing, including affordable housing; and

 

3.               Form a basis for the efficient expenditure of funds relating to the subjects of the City of Reno Master Plan.

 

b.              Master plan amendments shall not be in effect prior to the Truckee Meadows Regional Planning Commission finding the master plan amendments conform to the Truckee Meadows Regional Plan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Zoning Map Amendment and PUD Findings:

NRS 278A and NRS 250 (2) Findings:

 

              In accordance with NRS, Sections 278A.500 and .510 must be addressed when acting on a zoning map amendment to approve a PUD. In addition, the findings for NRS 278.250(2) must also be addressed. Listed below are the applicant responses to the findings for 278A.500 and 278.250(2). Staff comments are provided, as applicable to each finding. The finding for NRS 278A.510 is addressed in the Phasing section on page 4 of the PUD HB which provides a 20 year period in which to develop the project with the ability to request the City Council to determine if it is appropriate to extend the project past the initial 20 year development schedule 

 

NRS 278A.500 Minute order:  Findings of fact required.  The grant or denial of tentative approval by minute action must set forth the reasons for the grant, with or without conditions, or for the denial, and the minutes must set forth with particularity in what respects the plan would or would not be in the public interest, including but not limited to findings on the following:

 

1.              In what respects the plan is or is not consistent with the statement of objectives of a planned unit development.

 

Applicant’s Response:

Land Use - The ±1,737-acre site is surrounded by USFS lands to the east and a portion of the south and by private property to the north, south and west and a portion of the east.  The StoneGate PUD is a mixed-use development that allows a maximum of 5,000 residential units comprised of varying densities, a ±1,240,000 square foot neighborhood and town centers and associated open space, schools, parks and an extensive trail corridor network.

 

The objective of the StoneGate PUD is to establish design standards and expectations to develop a mix of uses on the property that will address the following:

·         Sensitivity to, and connectivity with, adjacent open space features including trails and U.S. Forest Service lands.

·         Utilization of sensitive grading, protection of environmentally constrained lands, Low Impact Development (LID) design standards, and natural drainage facilities required for development of the site.

·         Maintenance of the historic ranch aesthetics of the property including use of trails, preservation of open space, incorporation of interpretive signage and use of architectural features such as monumentation and building design that is complementary to the ranch theme.

·         Remain sensitive to the surrounding density and lots sizes with the existing development to the west.

Traffic and Circulation - StoneGate includes a hierarchy of roadways that consists of an arterial parkway, arterial/collectors, neat streets, and local streets.  Streets are intended to provide access between neighborhoods and facilitate bike and pedestrian connections to the trail corridors and open space

 

Staff Comment: Although traffic improvements for internal and direct access from the adjacent arterial (White Lake Parkway) and US 395 are addressed, there are no provisions for trip reduction or transit for this project. It is unclear at this time how the timing of the proposed development within StoneGate will impact existing freeway infrastructure capacity.  The project is proposed to build out over a period of 20 years.  As development is proposed, updated traffic analysis should be required.

 

Common Open Space and Trails - StoneGate is first and foremost a walkable community with over eight miles of connected trail systems (70-200 feet wide) and multiple proposed access points to U.S. Forest Service Land, including common open space, parks, and trails.  By removing traditional barriers of walls, fences, and traffic, the resulting connective network allows homes to be within walking distance from trails, parks, and other community amenities.  Streetscapes, common open space corridors, parks, easements, and drainageways will be linked into a single system, bringing nature into the community.  The internal trail network connects destinations such as the Town Center, community parks, trailheads, overlooks, and active and passive park spaces.

 

Utilities - StoneGate will provide water, sanitary sewer, drainage facilities, communications, gas, and electric master infrastructure to each of the planning areas and each final parcel.  The master infrastructure facilities serving the planning areas will be sized appropriately to allow flexibility within the community for housing densities to fluctuate.

 

2.              The extent to which the plan departs from zoning and subdivision regulations otherwise applicable to the property, including but not limited to density, bulk and use, and the reasons why these departures are or are not deemed to be in the public interest.

 

Applicant’s Response:  The PUD Handbook design standards are similar to the City of Reno zoning code.  Where the design standards contained in the PUD Handbook depart from the RMC, they do so to address specific design considerations relative to existing site conditions or natural features.  These added features will help to create a uniform master planned community that’s focused on preserving the site’s rural heritage and natural resources.  Many of the StoneGate PUD standards exceed the RMC standards and instead require Low Impact Design standards that are not typically found in subdivision.  The design incorporates pedestrian connections that link the schools, parks, town center and residential developments.

 

3.              The ratio of residential to nonresidential use in the planned unit development.

 

Applicant’s Response:  The PUD encompasses 1,737 acres and 5,000 residential units.  Over 28 percent of the project will be common open space and parks.  Approximately 53.8 percent of the site will be residential and approximately 11.3 percent of the site will be non-residential.  The remaining ±7 percent contains road rights-of-way.

 

Staff Comment: Staff’s primary concerns the loss of land for employment; and associated traffic impacts to US 395 between the site and I-80 resulting from the land use change from Industrial to Residential on ± 993.73 acres proposed with this application.

 

4.              The purpose, location and amount of the common open space in the planned unit development, the reliability of the proposals for maintenance and conservation of the common open space, and the adequacy or inadequacy of the amount and purpose of the common open space as related to the proposed density and type of residential development.

 

Applicant’s Response: The PUD land use plan provides for over 25 percent of the site to be designated as common open space.  StoneGate is first and foremost a walkable community with over eight miles of connected trail systems and multiple proposed access points to U.S. Forest Service Land, including common open space, parks and trails.  Streetscapes, open space corridors, parks easements and drainageways will be linked in a single system, bringing nature into the community.  The internal trail network connects destinations such as the town center, public facilities, community parks, trailheads, overlooks and active and passive park spaces.  The open space and drainageways will all be privately maintained.

 

5.              The physical design of the plan and the manner in which the design does or does not make adequate provision for public services, provide adequate control over vehicular traffic, and further the amenities of light and air, recreation and visual enjoyment.

 

Applicant’s Response:  The streets within StoneGate include a hierarchy of roadways that consists of a primary arterial parkway, arterial/collector streets, neat streets and local streets.  The streets are intended to provide access between neighborhoods and facilitate bike and pedestrian connections to the trail corridors and open space.  All roads will be designed in accordance with City of Reno street design standards unless noted otherwise in the PUD Handbook.

 

Staff Comment:  Although traffic improvements for internal and direct access from the adjacent arterial (White Lake Parkway) and US 395 are addressed, there are no provisions for trip reduction or transit for this project. It is unclear at this time how the timing of the proposed development within StoneGate will impact existing freeway infrastructure capacity.  The project is proposed to build out over a period of 20 years.  As development is proposed, updated traffic analysis may be required.

 

6.              The relationship, beneficial or adverse, of the proposed planned unit development to the neighborhood in which it is proposed to be established.

 

Applicant’s Response: The open space corridors and trail connections will be used to protect future development.  There are currently no surrounding neighborhoods, with the exception of home sites bordering the northwest corner of Phase 5.  That neighborhood will benefit from the flood mitigation along US 395 and with the new roadway, utility and landscaping improvements.

 

Measures to mitigate adverse impacts to abutting land uses have been included in the PUD.  This includes the redesign of the drainage structures along US 395.  The existing NDOT drainage structures are inadequate to maintain the 100-year storm event.  The NDOT frontage road unintentionally dams water and forces overflow onto adjacent properties.  Removal of the frontage road and the introduction of landscape buffering along US 395 will alleviate flooding concerns. In addition, it improves roundabout circulation at the entry, allows for emergency and improves the visual appearance along the US 395.  The existing residential development to the northwest will benefit from the upgraded flood protection and emergency access roads

 

7.              In the case of a plan which proposes development over a period of years, the sufficiency of the terms and conditions intended to protect the interests of the public, residents and owners of the planned unit development in the integrity of the plan.

 

Applicant’s Response: The development and build-out of StoneGate will ultimately be dependent on market conditions.  This PUD shall be valid and enforceable for 20-years.  The 20-year time frame shall commence upon final approval of this PUD (as evidenced by the recording date of the certified handbook).  If the project is not completed at the end of 20 years, then the PUD shall require an application to the Reno City Council to determine if it is appropriate to extend the development schedule prior to further development.  Completion is defined as the recordation of all Master Developer’s parcel maps (creation of super pads) for all phases; and construction of the community center.  This also includes construction of all mass grading, on and off-site backbone infrastructure including water, sewer, arterial and collector roadways, and construction of all improvements affecting major drainageways.  The time frame shall not apply to the construction of individual homes on recorded lots of approved final maps or for construction of permitted non-residential uses, as described in the PUD Handbook.

 

The overall project phasing, as outlined in this PUD Handbook, is subject to change at the Master Developer’s sole discretion based on market conditions and development of adjacent properties.  The project will be built-out in a minimum of five phases, with the Master Developer responsible for constructing the master “backbone” infrastructure.  The individual merchant home builders will be responsible for the internal infrastructure, roads and access to trails, and dedication of public improvements. There is no maximum or minimum number of lots required per final map, except that each final map must have at least five lots.

 

Each tentative map, special use permit and final map, as applicable, shall be a standalone project and shall include all public and private infrastructure for roadways, landscaping, water service, sanitary sewer, drainage, utilities and project entryway signage, necessary to serve the affected area.

 

NRS 278A.510 Minute order:  Specification of time for filing application for final approval.  Unless the time is specified in an agreement entered into pursuant to NRS 278.0201, if a plan is granted tentative approval, with or without conditions, the city or county shall set forth, in the minute action, the time within which an application for final approval of the plan must be filed or, in the case of a plan which provides for development over a period of years, the periods within which application for final approval of each part thereof must be filed.

 

Applicant’s Response:  The City, upon tentative approval of the PUD typically requires that PUD be finally approved and certified within four months of the tentative approval.  It is anticipated that this will be the case for the StoneGate PUD.  The applicant intends to request City Council for final approval and PUD handbook certification immediately subsequent to the Regional Planning Commissions approval with subsequent recordation of the handbook with the Washoe County Recorder.  The handbook outlines the phased development of the PUD will occur within 20 years.  Should the development, as defined in the PUD, take longer than 20 years, the owner/applicant must request the City Council to amend the development schedule contained in the PUD.

 

Zoning Map AmendmentGeneral zoning map amendment requirements.  In order to approve any zoning map amendment, the Planning Commission and City Council shall find that the zoning is in accordance with the Master Plan for land use and be designed, as applicable:

 

a.                   To preserve the quality of air and water resources.

 

Applicant’s Response: Preservation of air quality and water resources is integral to the overall project design.  Development is focused on enhancing the major drainageways and providing corridors for the water to naturally flow.  Streetscapes, open space corridors, parks, easements and drainageways will be linked in a single system to bring nature into the community.  By creating a trail system both internally and connecting to external public open space areas, residents will be encouraged to walk and bicycle and reduce vehicle use, thereby improving air quality. 

 

Water resources will also be preserved through the use of reclaimed water, if made available, for landscape irrigation within common areas and rights-of-way.  Reclaimed water may be provided by the Washoe County Department of Water Resources from treated effluent at the Cold Springs Water Reclamation Facility (CSWRF).  The reclaimed water line from CSWRF to StoneGate will follow the same general four mile corridor of the off-site sanitary sewer force main that conveys waste water from the project to CSWRF.  If available, reclaimed water will be utilized for irrigation of landscaping within common areas and rights-of-way.

 

Staff Comment:  The proposed PUD HB adequately addresses this finding.

 

b.                   To promote the conservation of open space and the protection of other natural and scenic resources from unreasonable impairment.

 

Applicant’s Response: One of the key elements and prominent features of the StoneGate development is the abundance of common open space, parks and trails.  Over 25 percent or 435 acres of the property will be common open space.  Every home will be within walking distance from a trail.  Internal trails within the neighborhoods will connect to destinations, such as the town center, public facilities, community parks, trailheads, overlooks and both active and passive park spaces.  Trail corridors range in width between 70-200 feet and provide channels for water conveyance.  Vegetation along the drainage ways will encourage wildlife habitat and preserve the natural aesthetics that is in place today.  Trailheads will be provided to connect the trail system to adjacent US Forest Service land.  The master developer will coordinate with local groups like The Biggest Little Trail Stewardship to design, construct and maintain trails around Peavine Mountain and the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest.  The planned trail system is comprised of primary community trails and secondary neighborhood trails.  A hierarchy of trail types and locations is identified in the PUD Handbook.

 

Staff Comment:  Those portions of the site containing the most suitable lands to be preserved as open space are located south of the UPRR tracks and currently designated for open space and large lot residential development.  These areas contain a majority of the sites steeper slopes, defined drainageways and wetlands.  The scenic and natural resources located north of the UPRR tracks will be analyzed and protected during the entitlement and building permit review process to address major drainageways, wetlands and/or cuts/fills of 20/10 feet requests for hillside development, etc.  The proposed PUD Land Use plan and development standards provide conservation and protection of these natural resources.

 

c.                   To consider existing views and access to solar resources by studying the height of new buildings which will cast shadows on surrounding residential and commercial developments.

 

Applicant’s Response: The property is surrounded by undeveloped land and won’t block views or access to solar resources on adjacent properties.  The site’s bowl-like topography provides for sweeping views overlooking White Lake and the alkali playa across the valley.  The land use plan takes into account the site’s natural topography and sloped areas and provides for clustering of homes, where appropriate.  The town center planning area is designed with clustered buildings and buffered by common open space, and roadways on the perimeter. 

 

Future residents located next to the neighborhood center area will not be negatively impacted by the buildings or commercial uses because they will be physically separated by roadways, common open space and trails.

 

Staff Comment: The site’s physical characteristics in conjunction with surrounding land use make it suitable to be developed under the proposed industrial, residential and commercial PUD Land Use designations with minimal impacts on existing views and solar access.

 

d.                   To reduce the consumption of energy by encouraging the use of products and materials which maximize energy efficiency in the construction of buildings.

 

Applicant’s Response: The PUD Handbook incorporates use of on-site materials and context sensitive design to create a character that blends into the natural setting.  Minimal fencing will be used to encourage community and to create a visual connection to the outdoors.  Buildings and structures constructed by the master developer include lookout towers, star gazing platforms, entry monumentation, trail heads, park and trail amenities, benches, signage, community center and the lost cabin will be made from wood, stone, and other materials naturally found in nature.

 

Staff Comment: The applicant has proposed solar energy use for the Community Center within the Neighborhood Center.  The PUD HB does not identify additional energy efficiency methods beyond what the building code will require with standard development.

 

e.                   To provide for recreational needs. 

 

Applicant’s Response:  Recreational amenities are incorporated throughout the entire development.  These areas include parks, trails, drainageways designed with passive and active recreation, lookout towers, connections to common open space, picnic areas, trail heads and the community centers.  The PUD HB provides for 50 acres of designated programmed park space, plus open space and trail connections.

 

Staff Comment:  Trails on-site and within the drainageways along with protection of the wetlands will be addressed during design and review of the development plans via the SUP and/or tentative map process.  These provisions could also be applied to the nonresidential portions of the site, as applicable.

 

f.                    To protect life and property in areas subject to floods, landslides and other natural disasters

 

Applicant’s Response: A slope map is included with the PUD and defines area of with slopes.  The steeper sloped areas, shown in Phase 4, will include custom minimum one acre lots and development will be reviewed at the applicable parcel map, special use permit or tentative map process. 

 

Historic storm flows pass through StoneGate in a northerly direction via drainage reaches from Peavine Mountain.  Drainage structures under the frontage road and under US 395 convey flows to White Lake.  Based upon FEMA FIRM panels, major storm events cause flows to collect and flood at the existing structures of both the frontage road and US 395, eventually overtopping US 395 at multiple locations and terminating at White Lake.

 

Development of StoneGate will result in a peak flow increase due to the change in surface characteristics.  The design and hydrologic analysis of the proposed community have been conducted in compliance with the drainage guidelines for the City of Reno.  The channel designs for low flow events allows for a majority of the channel corridor to be used as functional recreational activities.  Flow velocities shall be maintained with natural, rockery drop structures together with small ponds acting as velocity dissipaters.  StoneGate shall implement adequate structures to convey the increase in flow, due to development, under the interstate without increasing the elevation of the flow overtopping the freeway in the existing condition.  To accommodate the additional drainage volume caused by the StoneGate development, additional storage within White Lake is planned on property owned by the StoneGate development.  The basin shall provide adequate storage to return flows to the historic state and mitigate water surface elevation changes to White Lake.  Prior to construction, the required Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Condition of Map Revision (CLOMR) will be prepared and approved to depict the new floodplains contained within channel and ponds.  Additionally, FEMA Letter of Map Revisions (LOMRs) will be prepared and approved as each phase of the project is completed.

 

The project site contains five existing drainage channels, which convey stormwater flows from the south to the north and east to west.  These flows continue underneath US 395 via existing culverts or over the freeway and terminate in the White Lake basin.  The site contains two natural major drainageways and multiple disturbed major drainageways, resulting from the previous ranch use and field irrigation.  The network of meandering, stepped-channel drainageways will be integrated in the StoneGate open space corridors and will convey off-site and developed flows through the community.  The design will be used to promote recreational us for low flow events and will be adequately sized to contain major storm flows within the corridor limits.  Drainage improvements will include corridors, drop structures, culverts, diversion elements and detention basins.

 

Staff Comment: All of these features and mitigations will be addressed during the development review process.

 

g.                   To conform to the adopted population plan, if required by NRS 278.170.

 

Applicant’s Response: StoneGate promises to meet the housing demands created by Nevada’s successful economic diversification policies with an unmatched 21st century intelligently planned and environmental friendly lifestyle that co-exists with the mountainside’s abundant natural resources.  North Valley employment and housing growth are rapidly moving forward.  Prior to the recession, vacant land along Lemmon Drive, Stead Boulevard and North Virginia Street was zoned for single family and mixed use development.  Much of what was previously planned for housing has now been rezoned and developed into industrial uses and employment generators.  Land that was once reserved for housing has been replaced with industrial uses.  With the entire region’s housing needs rapidly increasing, the availability of land for residential development must be increased accordingly.  The StoneGate PUD provides an affordable housing option, while also protecting and preserving the site’s natural resources and open space corridors. The projects overall density of three dwelling units per acre allows for density to be clustered and open space to remain a priority.  The community will be designed with a variety of housing products and pricing alternatives, intended for market rate prices up to custom homes on large lots.

 

Staff Comment:  The proposed PUD HB adequately addresses this finding.

 

h.                   To develop a timely, orderly and efficient arrangement of transportation and public facilities and services, including public access and sidewalks for pedestrians, and facilities and services for bicycles.

 

Applicant’s Response: The bicycle system includes trails, paths and lanes for all levels of ridership.  The primary network of bike paths is within the internal trails and greenway system that links the community and are designed to accommodate all riders from cyclists to recreational families.  On-street bike lanes are designated along both sides of the arterial parkways and arterial/collector roadways for more advanced and high speed riders looking to get from point A to point B fast and efficiently.  Pedestrians are encouraged to utilize internal trails and greenways by not providing any sidewalks parallel to the arterial parkway.  The arterial/collectors provide for a sidewalk on one side of the roadway to facilitate pedestrian access to neighborhoods from internal trails.  Neat streets have on-street bike lanes and sidewalks on both sides.

 

All local streets within neighborhoods are planned to have a minimum of one, six foot wide sidewalk.  These walks tie to multiple neighborhood connections to the internal trail systems that will act as the primary pedestrian circulation within the community.  Designs should minimize pedestrian and vehicular conflicts wherever possible through traffic calming, designated vehicular-pedestrian zones and high visibility crosswalks.

 

As the StoneGate PUD develops, the master developer will continue to work with RTC and the Union Pacific Railroad on future transit options that could include alternative transit, buses and a potential light rail line.

Staff Comment: As previously discussed, the primary concerns are the lack of clarity regarding mitigating the traffic impacts of this project on US 395.  The applicant has provided a phasing plan as it relates to planned freeway and regional road infrastructure improvements (August 30, 2017 Planning Commission Staff Report, Exhibit C).  Since studies are currently in process with NDOT regarding the freeway system within this region, NDOT was not able to provide definitive information related to plans and timing for freeway infrastructure improvements that will address the existing capacity issues on US 395/I-580 and I-80.

 

i.                    To ensure that the development on land is commensurate with the character of the physical limitations of the land.

 

Applicant’s Response: The site’s bowl-like topography provides for sweeping views overlooking White Lake and the alkali playa across the valley.  Peavine Summit serves as the backdrop to the project site.  The northern portion of the site is relatively flat with some steeper hills to the southwest and northeast corners.  This portion of the property is mostly made up of sage covered flats and pasture. 

 

The southern portion of the site is characterized by abundant pines and sagebrush with steeper terrain.  A ridge physically separates the project area from headwaters of Long Valley Creek.  Chase Canyon, an aspen grove and ephemeral stream site surrounded by rock outcroppings and slopes over 30 percent, is situated to the southeast.

 

The northern and southern sections of the property are bisected by an existing raised railroad, owned and maintained by Union Pacific Railroad.  The tracks have an existing wood vehicle undercrossing.  In addition, the Alturas 345 kV transmission line crosses the site, running parallel to the track.

 

Development of the parcel will need to take into account the site’s major drainageways and topographic slopes.   

 

Staff Comment:  The proposed PUD HB adequately addresses this finding.

 

j.                    To take into account the immediate and long-range financial impact of the application of particular land to particular kinds of development, and the relative suitability of the land for development.

 

Applicant’s Response: Development of the StoneGate site through a PUD will help to tie surrounding infrastructure, roads and services to the surrounding area.  By focusing higher intensity developments near each other, existing and proposed infrastructure will support a more efficient use of resources.  Development of the site will support the City of Reno and RTC by contributing to the Residential Construction Tax and Regional Road Impact Fees.  Development of the site will bring new resources to include sewer, reclaimed water, potable water, storm drainage and improve the road network for all land on the south side of US 395, within the Cold Springs valley.

 

Staff Comment: Maintaining the industrial zoning would provide greater revenues to the City which provides a better long term financial benefit than residential development.  Alternatively, the proposed StoneGate PUD includes a mixture of residential densities, contemplates a future high school site that is needed within the Cold Springs area and includes approximately 158 acres of non-residential land that is intended to provide services to the residents of StoneGate and Cold Springs.  The application materials include preservation of existing forested and steep slopes within Phase 4 by retaining a large lot residential, one acre minimum lot size. 

 

k.                   To promote health and the general welfare.

Applicant’s Response: Residents living in the StoneGate community will have immediate access to walking/biking trails and parks from their neighborhoods.  They will also have easy access to trail and common open space on the adjacent USFS lands.  The land use design will encourage residents to spend time outdoors, which will promote health and general welfare for everyone in the community.

 

Staff Comment:  The proposed PUD HB adequately addresses this finding.

 

l.                    To ensure the development of an adequate supply of housing for the community, including the development of affordable housing.

Applicant’s Response:  StoneGate promises to meet the housing demands created by Nevada’s successful economic diversification policies with an unmatched 21st century intelligently planned and environmental friendly lifestyle that co-exists with the mountainside’s abundant natural resources.  Based on data North Valley’s Employment and Wages data provided by the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation, the average wage in the North Valley’s is $18.85/hour or a salary of $39,247.  A two person household earning $18.85/hour each, would have a combined income of $78,495.54/year.  That annual income would equate to being able to purchase a $346,192 house.  The home prices in StoneGate are anticipated to begin in the high $200’s and continue up, depending on the housing product.  While not every employee working in the North Valley’s is going to be living in the North Valley’s region, StoneGate provides a housing product that is affordable and can provide for a range of housing prices. 

StoneGate also provides for a workforce housing product that is more aligned with “affordable housing” and not “market rate affordable” housing.  A minimum of 200 apartment units shall be set aside for affordable housing prior to approval of the first tentative map within Phase 5.  The units shall meet a minimum of 60 percent average medium income (AMI), as determined by the annual publication of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. 

 

North Valley employment and housing growth are rapidly moving forward.  Prior to the recession, vacant land along Lemmon Drive, Stead Boulevard and North Virginia Street was zoned for single family and mixed use development.  Much of what was previously planned for housing has now been rezoned and developed into industrial uses and employment generators.  Land that was once reserved for housing has been replaced with industrial uses.  With the entire region’s housing needs rapidly increasing, the availability of land for residential development must be increased accordingly.

 

Staff Comment: The project would add to the City’s overall housing supply and has identified 200 units of affordable multifamily within Phase 5 in addition to a variety of housing densities throughout the PUD boundary.  Approximately 25 percent of the units are planned within the Multifamily PUD Land Use category that allows for between 21 and 30 dwelling units per acre based on the proposed Master Plan and PUD Land Use designations.  These units will help to fulfill the need for higher density residential development within the City of Reno.

 

m.                To ensure the protection of existing neighborhoods and communities, including the protection of rural preservation neighborhoods.

 

Applicant’s Response: The site is surrounded by vacant land to the north, east, south and west.  Large lot residential development is located on the northwest corner of Phase 5 in unincorporated Washoe County.  StoneGate has been designed with over 25 percent common open space, which will protect and preserve the rural lifestyle of adjacent properties.  The use of roundabouts, instead of traffic signals has been incorporated into the project design, as well as dark sky lighting standards and wide open space buffers between StoneGate and adjacent land.

 

Staff Comment: The proposed PUD HB adequately addresses this finding.

 

n.                   To promote systems which use solar or wind energy.

 

Applicant’s Response: Buildings within the PUD will be designed and built in accordance with locally adopted building and energy codes.  Nothing in this PUD will prevent the use of solar and wind systems from being incorporated into building design.  StoneGate incorporates sustainability and sustainable development practices throughout the PUD.  Sustainable design is implemented as part of the walking/biking pathways provided in every planning area, town center and school site.  Sustainable development is also used in the open channel design and collection of stormwater runoff through bio-swales.  Plans demonstrating application of best practices or conformance with adopted standards shall be provided with each tentative map, special use permit and/or building permit, as applicable.  Sustainable development practices include but are not limited to the following:

 

·                     Use of Low Impact Development (LID) standards;

·                     Integrate bio-retention and open swale systems into landscaping;

·                     Disperse road and driveway storm water to adjacent open space and landscaped areas;

·                     Convey drainage in open swales rather than in closed conduits;

·                     Use of medians, bulb-outs, cul-de-sacs and roadside swales to limit continuous flow paths over impervious surfaces;

·                     Minimize hardscaping by including sidewalks on one side of the street only and/or constructing sidewalks using pervious materials; 

·                     Provide pedestrian and bicycle path connections to encourage walking and cycling and increase access without adding significant impervious areas;

·                     Use of alternatives to curb and gutter in parking lots and in residential zones where soils and slopes permit;

·                     Use of water efficient plants/landscaping;

·                     Use of Best Management Practices during construction;

·                     Use of LED in all non-residential lighting; and

·                     Use of motion sensor lighting for exterior lighting

 

Staff Comment:  none

 

o.                   To foster the coordination and compatibility of land uses with any military installation in the city, county or region, taking into account the location, purpose and stated mission of the military installation.

Applicant’s Response: No military installations are proposed with this application.

 

Staff Comment:  none