News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Planning commission gives nod to code change

After considerable discussion and some dissent, the Sisters Planning commission voted 4-2 to recommend acceptance of code changes that would allow an RV park as a use in the Sun Ranch Tourist Commercial Zone.

The final decision will go before the Sisters City Council, which is scheduled to have a work session on the matter on June 26, and a public hearing on July 10.

The property developers suggested the code changes. They propose a “boutique, higher-end RV Park that caters to the growing sector of the tourism industry that travels in RVs” to be sited on the property formerly known as the Conklin Guest House property at the corner of Barclay Drive and Camp Polk Road/Locust Street.

Commissioner Jeremy Dickman, who voted against the code changes, summed up his dissent: “I’m just not in favor of auto-dependent uses, being… I don’t think we need to further cater to in a city that’s plagued by big rigs, trucks, RVs going through it all the time anyway.”

Community Director Scott Woodford told The Nugget that the tenor of the discussion and the concerns of the minority will be included in a staff report that will be prepared for the City Council prior to the June 26 work session. He noted that the dissenters can also submit their own statements for inclusion in the staff report if they wish to do so.

The code change proposal has drawn both criticism and support from members of the public. Opponents express concerns about the impact of such a development at that location, while proponents see an RV park there as an asset to the community.

The planning commission decision does not give the green light to a specific development on the property. If the council concurs with the planning commission and approves the code changes, the next steps for the developer would be to craft a detailed development plan for the property. It is at that point in the process that issues such as traffic and the specific proposed uses of the property would be up for discussion and debate.

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Jim Cornelius, Editor in Chief

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Jim Cornelius is editor in chief of The Nugget and author of “Warriors of the Wildlands: True Tales of the Frontier Partisans.” A history buff, he explores frontier history across three centuries and several continents on his podcast, The Frontier Partisans. For more information visit www.frontierpartisans.com.

 

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