January 25, 2008

Development planned at Shaffers Crossing

Mike Potter
Staff Writer

A Shaffers Crossing highway sign on U.S. 285 frames an expanse of land southeast of US. 285, on the opposite side of the highway from the trout ponds, that has been targeted for devetopment. (Photo by Tom Locke/The Flume) .

The owner of land near Shaffers Crossing said he intends to go forward with plans for a 400-home development, but said he wouldn't be doing anything until he gets the OK from Jefferson County.

Ron Lewis, who owns approximately 1,000 acres near the U.S. 285 and County Road 83 intersection, in far western Jefferson County northeast of Pine Junction, said that area is an ideal location for a development, even if the current sluggish trend in the real estate market continues.

"It has all the elements essential to a development," he said. "Access, utilities and water," he said.

His plan wouldn't call for all the land to be developed immediately. He would rather see the west side of the property, closest to U.S. 285, developed first.

A multifamily area and commercial lot would be close to the U.S. 285 and County Road 83 intersection and would be developed before any single-family plots, said Lewis.

But construction on the development wouldn't begin anytime soon, he said. It will be several years before construction even begins.

The proposed development has one major hurdle to overcome, though.

Nancy York, planner for the Jefferson County Planning and Zoning office, said that, as it stands now, her office would not approve the development based on a pre-application filed by Lewis.

The acreage information that he gave in his pre-application form was different than what the Jefferson County assessor has in the database, she said.

"We had a hard time deciphering how the acreage matches up with the county assessor's records," she said.

According to York, the pre-application called for a number of uses for the land including:

Another reason Planning and Zoning isn't signing off on the development is that it doesn't jive with current land use policies.

"A major point we tried to get across is the proposal isn't meeting the Conifer, U.S. 285 land use plan," York said.

Lewis said he has heard no complaints about the proposed development, but no one has come forward and spoken to him.

Instead, most of the criticism has come over the Internet, through Pinecam.com, he said.


Shaffers Crossing Development Plan

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