Tuesday night the City Council considered an annexation proposal for an 83-acre parcel west of Taft near the Lakeside Terrace subdivision. The owner wants to annex and zone the property, known as the Water’s Edge Addition, as low-density residential, which is compatible with the City’s current comprehensive plan and proposed Create Loveland master plan.
However, neighbors don’t like the idea and submitted a petition with 172 signatures requesting the City purchase the property and annex it as open space. They argue the development would affect the character of the neighborhood, result in a loss of habitat and views and hurt home values.
The Planning Commission previously reviewed and recommended approval of the annexation and zoning request. However, after pressure from the neighbors, the Commission made a second conflicting recommendation, suggesting the City consider purchasing the property as open space. The City’s Open Lands Advisory Commission has reviewed the Water’s Edge property on three separate occasions in the past and did not recommend that staff pursue the acquisition.
After discussion and many public comments, the Council gave preliminary approval to the annexation and zoning requests. However, the final reading on the ordinances was postponed until August 2. At Councilman Troy Krenning’s suggestion, the residents will try to negotiate with the owner and come up with a deal in which the residents would pay $3 million in additional property taxes to purchase the property via a special improvement district. The neighbors’ intent would be to keep the property as open space, though, and the legality of such a financing option is unclear. In addition, if an agreement is reached the City would have to match the $3 million, which not all Council members appear to support.