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South Valley Journal

Herriman leaders consider updates to the general plan

Mar 28, 2017 03:00PM ● By Tori LaRue

This map shows the designated future land uses of Herriman City by color. (Herriman City)

By Tori La Rue | [email protected]

Herriman officials are creating a new blueprint for the city by updating the general plan that was adopted in 2013.

A city’s general plan acts as the vision for future physical development by describing land uses and foretelling where those land uses should be located. These land use divisions are decided based on preserving community identity, managing growth and density, improving the physical environment of the city and other factors.

The biggest reason for Herriman’s general plan update is to extend the city’s land use map to include recently annexed properties, such as the 500-acre Dansie property at approximately 13100 S. and 7000 West, and properties that could be annexed in the future, according to City Planner Bryn McCarty.

The proposed land use for the Dansie property is mostly agricultural and residential use. Should nearby land owners decide to annex into Herriman to develop their land, the new general plan would help them to know what the city would like to see in these areas, McCarty said.

Other proposed changes to the general plan include changing some planned mixed use areas to commercial, creating an area designated for business park and creating a new medium-density residential category that would allow the city to differentiate between places where the city would like to find townhomes compared to apartments.

“Previously, they were all lumped into one category,” McCarty said. “Anything eight units per acre and higher was considered the same. This adjustment will better serve the city.”

The city hosted a public hearing on these proposed general plan updates on March 8. Several residents expressed their thoughts of how the city could improve the update general plan before adopting it.

Jerry Walker, who grew up on a Herriman farm, said he was concerned with the way agriculture was defined in the general plan because it has the potential to place 2-acre properties and 49-acre properties into the same land use category.

“You created an extra division of residential because you saw there was a need to have more divisions, yet you took all of the agriculture and threw it into one and that doesn’t work,” Walker said to the council. “You still need different zones for different agriculture because not all agriculture is all the same. I think there’s a tendency that if you’re not farmers, you don’t look at it that way, but you need to.”

Glen Larson, another resident, said he appreciated the council’s effort to cut back on high-density land uses in the general plan but asked that fewer units be permitted per acre on high-density land uses.

After resident comments, city council members said they were not ready to pass the general plan yet.

Mayor Carmen Freeman said he wanted the plan to address agricultural land use for various-sized properties. He also wanted the plan to cover Herriman’s goal to become a business center and the city’s plan for trail and recreational development along the south mountain, which extends from the Mountain View Corridor to the county property on the west.

Councilwoman Nicole Martin said excluding the word “sustainability” from the general plan is an omission that needs to be corrected.

“By ‘sustainable’ I mean, are we pulling in the revenue that we need to meet the needs of all of the residents who are living in our city?” she said “We need economic development, a daytime population accessibility to traffic corridors and balanced housing types. All of those things are important for us being a balance community.

Councilman Jared Henderson was the most eager of the city council members to pass the general plan, saying little fixes here and there could extend the process indefinitely. The council has been working on updating the plan for seven months.

“The general plan is the general plan,” he said. “A lot of the things that have been mentioned are details in zoning and those are things to be taken care of under those procedures for densities in those particular zones. I think we need to move forward as judiciously as possible with the general plan and the vision.”

In response, Councilman Craig Tischner said he also believes the document is a living document but said he doesn’t want to be making major changes to the plan every few weeks.

The council chose to send the plan back to staff for revisions and invited staff to bring it back within 30 days.