Planning panel OKs a variety of projects

More projects are moving through the town’s planning process.

The Planning & Zoning Commission July 27 approved several projects, including a 66-acre industrial park with a Fry’s Marketplace and a 24-acre shopping center and two subdivisions, one with 339 homes and the other with 81.

The commission also postponed action on the 40-acre Barney Farms North residential development. The developer wants to rezone the property, located south of Germann Road and west of Signal Butte Road, from Industrial to Neighborhood.

A proposed 65.9-acre industrial park on the north side of that development along Germann Road was approved despite concerns by Commissioner Troy Young about possible noise from a project that could have than 1 million square feet of building space.

Young wanted to know what noise mitigation had been planned because of the project’s proximity to homes.

“When that was going through the zoning, there were conditions added for an enhanced buffer,” Senior Planner Evan Balmer said. “It was contemplated for industrial uses and an enhanced buffer was completed.”

The noise could come from the semi-trucks but the loading docks sit at the center of the space with buildings surrounding the area where they would be parked, Balmer said.

“They’re also providing over 1,600 parking spaces, which far exceeds our zoning requirements and allows for flexibility to attract users because we don’t have users identified,” Balmer added.

An 8-foot wall along the north and south elevations of the buildings on the ends of the development will keep the loading docks from public view.

The commission also continued for future consideration a proposed 4.5-acre Carvana distribution center so that the developer can refine the application for a conditional use permit and site plan.

The center and an outdoor storage area would be located within the Power Marketplace Business Park near the corner of Power and Rittenhouse roads.

But the commission approved another project in Power Marketplace Business Park: an 18,500-square-foot Empire Southwest construction equipment rental facility that will be located behind the Home Depot.

Vice Chair Bill Smith asked about restrictions that would keep some equipment out of public view and Planner Mallory Ress said certain types of equipment cannot be displayed in an extended position according to the terms of the permit.

“I’m thinking more like the backhoe buckets and the excavator buckets, not the lifts, which can extend pretty tall,” Smith said.

“Cherry pickers are on that list too,” Mallory Ress said. “There is not a specific top height allowed for storage on that equipment.”

Vince DiBella of Adaptive Architects, which represents Empire Southwest, said there’s no need to use the equipment as an advertising platform.

“There’s no intent to extend it,” DiBella said. “It’s going to be treated something like the cherry pickers as well – no need for advertisement. We’re not going to put signs up there.”

He also said that the equipment the company specializes in will be for general construction and comprise things like tractors, backhoes, skid steers, scissor lifts, cherry pickers and forklifts rather than bulldozers or dump trucks.

Commissioner Jeff Nielsen raised concerns about the 2,000-square-foot building that will be used to wash returned equipment and what type of drainage system would be used.

DiBella said the company will use an efficient and sustainable system that “collects all the water and separates the solids and the water is reused.”

“So there’s very little waste that actually goes to the sewer,” he added.

This back lot also includes a fuel service area for returned equipment and has a minimum 8-foot wall surrounding the storage yard that hides the machines from public view.

Also approved without discussion was the site plan for the 24-acre Hudson Station Commercial Center at the southwest corner of Queen Creek and Signal Butte roads, part of the 92-acre Hudson Station development.

The commercial site will have a 23,000-square-foot Fry’s Marketplace and Pharmacy, a 42,000-square-foot EOS Fitness facility, along with three shops buildings, three drive-thru restaurants, and a Fry’s Fuel Center.

Because it consists of six parcels, the developers must get a state Department of Water Resources certificate of assured water supply.

According to town documents, the town Water Division can’t agree to supply water to the subdivision unless this stipulation is met as Queen Creek doesn’t have a 100-year assured water designation.

Also approved was the Madera Ashton Woods residential development south of Queen Creek Road and between Signal Butte and Meridian roads.

The 339-lot subdivision will have floorplans ranging between 1,500 and 4,900-square-feet.

The Rittenhouse Commons 1 gated community at the northwest corner of Rittenhouse and Germann roads also won approval.

The medium-density residential area will have three standard plans with three different elevation designs constructed on 81 lots. Floor plans will range between 1,700 and 2,400-square-feet.

Commissioner Steven Ester said it’s too soon to give prices for these homes and “they probably won’t know that until they actually start building.”