No zen for Namaste Rock project north of Moab

Other proposals get council approvals

Namaste? More like No-maste.

An effort to rezone 24 acres of land on Highway 191 in the vicinity of the Moab Giants failed to move forward earlier this month after it died for lack of a motion at the Grand County Council’s second meeting of September.

Namaste Rock LLC property owner representative Michael Skarda was not in attendance Sept. 17 when the council entertained his request to rezone the acreage from Range & Grazing to Highway Commercial.

Council chambers were silent when the item came up for discussion. Skarda at previous meetings with the council and the Grand County Planning Commission said the property, which currently has a single residence, said he wanted to put a restaurant and other commercial outlets near the highway – 13714 N. Highway 191, to be precise – with a housing development on the lot’s interior.

There were three key concerns on council members’ minds. One is, there is no guarantee the property owner would build what he said he would build if the council granted the rezone request.

The other issues are well known. There are potentially serious water and sewer problems in the area. According to Grand County Community and Economic Development Director Zacharia Levine, “this particular area is going to be challenging for a sewer system.”

Other rezone requests at the county council meeting had happier endings.

Hines property

Art and Terri Hines’ longtime effort to split their three-quarter-acre Spanish Valley Drive lot into two found success after the council agreed to approve their request to rezone the lot from large lot to small lot residential.

The goal is to provide a place for a family member to build a home, something the council supported. “I don’t see why Grand County should get in the way of (someone’s) upward mobility,” said Member Curtis Wells after Member Jaylyn Hawks made a motion to approve the rezone.

Member Mary McGann also said she “very much supports” the rezone, but cautioned it could “create political issues” by setting a precedent.

The vote passed 6-1 with Chair Evan Clapper in opposition.

Buzzard’s Belly

The council voted unanimously to approve a rezone request from Range & Grazing to Neighborhood Commercial at a store in Cisco. Owners Alan and Jean Murawski needed the rezone to reopen the Buzzard’s Belly market sitting on a half acre at 73 S. Cisco Boat Ramp Rd.