Red Rocks under imminent threat of development

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ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Original Post - Jul 28, 2011 - 11:13am PT
This is getting serious: please read this post http://www.mountainproject.com/v/red-rock-threatened-by-development/107227001 and get involved!
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 28, 2011 - 11:26am PT
THANK YOU ERIC & LUCIE, THIS IS CRITICAL!


Here's the contact info (sources: saveredrock.com & blm.gov):

BLM Southern Nevada District Office:
Mary Jo Rugwell, District Manager,
4701 North Torrey Pines Drive
Las Vegas, NV 89130
Phone: 702-515-5000
Fax: 702-515-5023
Email: lvfoweb@blm.gov

Clark county commissioners:
All commissioners can be reached at: (702) 455-3500
All commissioners can receive faxes at: (702) 455-3271
Clark County Commissioners, 500 S. Grand Central Parkway, Las Vegas, NV 89155
Steve Sisolak, District A, ccdista@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Tom Collins, District B, ccdistb@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Larry Brown, District C, ccdistc@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Lawrence Weekly, District D, ccdistd@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Chris Giunchigliani, District E, ccdiste@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Susan Brager, District F, ccdistf@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Mary Beth Scow, District G, ccdistg@ClarkCountyNV.gov

US Senators and Representatives for NV: (and yes, even if you don't live in NV, it doesn't mean you shouldn't contact them)
Senator Harry Reid (D- NV), 202-224-3542, senator_reid@reid.senate.gov
Senator Dean Heller (R- NV), 202-224-6244, heller.senate.gov/contact_form.cfm
Representative Shelley Berkley (D-01), 202-225-5965, shelley.berkley@mail.house.gov
Representative Joe Heck (R-03), 202-225-3252, https://heck.house.gov/contact-me/email-me
Chugach

Trad climber
Vermont
Jul 28, 2011 - 11:59am PT
If Vegas had less than a 50% foreclosure rate and wasn't the epicenter of real estate collapse, I might believe this to be a threat.

Granted, I don't live in Vegas but why would anyone drive past 70,000 foreclosed properties to build 5,000 new ones? Yes, maybe in 50 years the development makes sense. Maybe.

To me it's like proposing an oil well where everyone knows oil doesn't exist. Gets the opposition wound up but seems highly unlikely.
troutboy

Trad climber
Newark, DE
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:07pm PT
Chugach
If Vegas had less than a 50% foreclosure rate and wasn't the epicenter of real estate collapse, I might believe this to be a threat.

Granted, I don't live in Vegas but why would anyone drive past 70,000 foreclosed properties to build 5,000 new ones? Yes, maybe in 50 years the development makes sense. Maybe.

To me it's like proposing an oil well where everyone knows oil doesn't exist. Gets the opposition wound up but seems highly unlikely

It's not always about now. Developers will often get the required zoning/approvals etc, then wait for the right economic climate to build, especially if they have already acquired the land or can get it cheaply now.

I am not familiar with this situation, but just wanted to note that that current economic climate is not always a good barometer.

TS
FRUMY

Trad climber
SHERMAN OAKS,CA
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:09pm PT
Chugach why are they building houses anywhere?
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:11pm PT
LV developers at work:





Ghastly as this is, the new development envisions 5000-7000 houses virtually adjacent to RR, with an estimated daily population of about 15,000 people.


This last image and other critical information at http://saveredrock.com They promise to have an e-petition but have not yet posted it.

A ready-for-signing e-petition is at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/saveredrock/ but this appears to be last year's version.

However quixotic the endeavor may be, if climbers don't step up in support of the integrity of our wild and open spaces, they will richly deserve the outdoor gym atmosphere and urban flavor that will be the result of their silence.
Studly

Trad climber
WA
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:11pm PT
Do you ever wonder why Red Rocks has the desolate campground, a dust bowl. Do you think the Casinos want people coming to Vegas and staying in a campground? They ain't going to be building no fancy campground, let me assure you.
I am against this threat of development to Red Rocks, but based on how I've seen the city limits move so quickly towards Red Rocks thru the years at such a insane pace, I can't imagine that they will reign it in where they are at, and do some voluntarily. It is going to take a Presidential edic or some such. Not going to be easy to fight Vegas. You have to make it worth their while.
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:15pm PT
So Studly, are you giving in and giving up without a fight or without even trying?
Not very studly of you.
Elcapinyoazz

Social climber
Joshua Tree
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:24pm PT
But do I understand correctly that this issue has to do with gypsum mining?

I haven't looked into this in a while, but IIRC, the proposed development area is at/in vicinity of an old non-operating gypsum mine and the developers are using a "reclamation / redevelopment" angle to try to get the zoning changed to allow their dense residential development.

The proposed site is currenly zoned (last I checked anyway) rural. So the entire thing revolves around a zoning board or planning commission approving a zoning change, and those boards/commissions typically will do whatever the county commissioners demand...shape the analysis around the conclusion type thing.

Without knowing the intimate details, it's hard to design an opposition strategy (for example, some counties or cities have binding long-term use-plan documents that specifcy zoning and variances aren't at the whim of politicians). But lots of places, it IS at the whim of local elected officials and they tend to do WTF ever they want, even in the face of massive grassroots opposition. If they get defeated in the next election, that developer will surely be nice enough to give them a cushy job making twice what they pulled as relatively low-level politicos.

It's a racket, mostly.
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:26pm PT
It's a racket that only a strong public outcry can stop.

These corrupt and greedy bastards still care about public opinion.
Starman

Trad climber
Sterling, MA
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:40pm PT
Chugach,

Since when does something have to make sense, to be done?
PAUL SOUZA

Trad climber
Clovis, CA
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:46pm PT
Someone should create a petition, like we did for Red Bull and the Cerro Torre fiasco, and blow up the e-mail boxes of the commissioners.
goatboy smellz

climber
Nederland
Jul 28, 2011 - 12:53pm PT
ElCap makes the right call, after seeing what developers have done with Boulder over the last 20 years it's all about the money and no amount of public outcry will stop the developers.

The estimates for the Denver metro area is a population increase of 1.5 Million over the next 40 years, Vegas is closer to 2 Million. Where is everybody going to live if they don't start planning now?
HighTraverse

Trad climber
Bay Area
Jul 28, 2011 - 01:07pm PT
the proposed development area is at/in vicinity of an old non-operating gypsum mine
It is on the site of the abandoned gypsum mine. It covers an entire mesa as shown on the map. It's also the mesa that separates RRocks from the Las Vegas valley, so if built, the views from the base of the canyon climbs up in RR will be of the development right under your nose with the valley partially obscured in the distance.

and where are they going to get the water? Utah, Colorado. Where are they going to export the smog? Arizona.

RR was toast when they build the subdivisions right up to the boundary.
Welcome to the world's most spectacular climbing gym, complete with multi pitch climbs and imitation wilderness. You might even see a rattler or get a pic of Bighorn Sheep with the city and smog as a backdrop. I've seen both.

Whoever thinks LV is about anything but $$$ is delusional. Just consider their promotional slogan "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas"
Come here, party, drink, gamble, screw around, forget all your personal responsibilities for a few days, then go back to the Real World with a clean conscience. It's Adult Disneyland on steroids.

Yes, I know decent people who live/have lived in Vegas including our closest friends who were dammed glad to sell their 3000 sq foot house with pool, get back to California and buy a 1700 sq ft 1940s bungalow with a postage stamp yard. Decent people are the majority of residents. Doesn't change the fact that $ runs the valley.
<<end of rant>>
susu

Trad climber
East Bay, CA
Jul 28, 2011 - 02:06pm PT
why would anyone drive past 70,000 foreclosed properties to build 5,000 new ones? Yes, maybe in 50 years the development makes sense. Maybe.
Because now is the time to buy. I'd add a signature to vote against it.
phylp

Trad climber
Millbrae, CA
Jul 28, 2011 - 02:45pm PT
I just sent emails to the people you recommended. Perhaps if enough of us who love the Red Rocks express an opposition to any more development in the Red Rocks viewshed, some good will come of it.
Thanks for the info, Phyl
HighTraverse

Trad climber
Bay Area
Jul 28, 2011 - 02:47pm PT
Red Rocks: View East from 6100 feet near base of Solar Slab towards Vegas, abandoned gypsum mine outlined in blue. This is the approximate area outlined on the earlier posted project proposal map. Las Vegas in distance. Google Earth imagery 1999.


No overlay of gypsum mine.

Edit: Added location of view: approx due East, 36° 4.801' N 115° 27.891' W, 6129 feet.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Jul 28, 2011 - 03:08pm PT
The current economic climate presents a wonderful opportunity for developers. With so many foreclosures, the city is losing property tax revenue. A perfect time for somebody with an income-generating scheme to apply for permits that might be otherwise scrutinized.
213

climber
Where the Froude number often >> 1
Jul 28, 2011 - 03:16pm PT
And guess where that water to supply these houses is coming from? That's right, a 21st century DWP-style project (except its SNWA this time) building a pipeline to pump various eastern NV valleys' groundwater down south. The eastern Basin and Range will be like Owens Valley, but an order of magnitude worse!

AND the BS climate modeling results (until ENSO is forecasted accurately these models are worthless for actual prediction; as toy models to test climate sensitivities under our current understanding of physics they are valuable as well as for other things, but I digress) are driving them further in this direction. OMG our water system is vulnerable! We need to ensure water for all the lawns!
HighTraverse

Trad climber
Bay Area
Jul 28, 2011 - 04:40pm PT
Save the Lawns!!!
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Jul 28, 2011 - 06:09pm PT
A hazardous and radiological waste survey should be conducted at the site and if anything is found it should be made public...
Indianclimber3

Trad climber
Jul 28, 2011 - 07:32pm PT
The land is worth a lot more to the developer with the zoning approved
Jim Rhodes probably wont be able to get it together himself,but can always section it off to Kb homes,Pulte etc,who are already starting to build new
subdivisions in Summerlin
Foreclosures in Vegas are high but there are a lot less for sale signs in the more desired areas like Summerlin where anything foreclosed has been snapped up long ago

k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Jul 28, 2011 - 10:46pm PT
Almost hate to say it, but.....


We should all pitch in and buy one of the homes! Then we could forget the CG and stroll over to the climbs.



















(OK, bad idea.)
Tobia

Social climber
GA
Jul 29, 2011 - 12:13am PT
My brother owns a house in Summerlin and at one time was the head honcho in that development; which is in close proximity to where this is happening. You can see Summerlin in the Mountain Project image.

Summerlin was owned by the Rouse Company, then the Hughes Corporation, and now some other corporation. They could care less about the "red rocks"; except how to remove or exploit.

It kills me to see them continue in this direction, with little regard to anyone or anything; especially with the question of a sustainable water supply in doubt.

It's a sad world.

RokJox: Some of these developers are their own banks.
Mungeclimber

Trad climber
sorry, just posting out loud.
Jul 29, 2011 - 12:58am PT
Joseph has a good point.

Make it costly.

Mr. Ed Abbey would be proud, monkey wrencher.
HighTraverse

Trad climber
Bay Area
Jul 29, 2011 - 01:02pm PT
radiological waste survey
Not likely to show anything. The Test Site is about 60 miles North.
hazardous waste: plenty of gypsum dust. Which will be liberated during construction. But hey, everyone in Vegas spends 99% of their time in air conditioned environmental chambers, they won't care.
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Jul 29, 2011 - 01:33pm PT
Gypsum production can involve radiological waste depending on the source stream constituents and production methods.
Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Jul 29, 2011 - 01:43pm PT
Mr. Ed Abbey would be proud, monkey wrencher.

Yes.

Make it more expensive, difficult, time consuming.

Wrench away I say.
WBraun

climber
Jul 29, 2011 - 01:51pm PT
Yes it's true that developers could care less about some dumb stupid rock climbers.

When I worked for Dempsy in Mammoth in the 70's he was the biggest developer there at the time.

Condos everywhere.

One day I was with him and asked him why he was going to rip up the meadows there in Old Mammoth to develop his latest massacre of condos and golf course.

He looked me straight in the eye and said: "Werner get it all now while you can before someone else does and retire."

I sarcastically said: "Yeah good idea" ..... :-)
Brandon-

climber
The Granite State.
Jul 29, 2011 - 02:05pm PT
Interesting thought Dingus, thanks.
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 29, 2011 - 02:11pm PT
Ding, Ding, Dingus rings the bell.
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Jul 29, 2011 - 04:57pm PT
The petition at saveredrock.com is up:

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/saveredrock2/
Burt

Big Wall climber
Las Vegas, Nv
Jul 29, 2011 - 05:04pm PT
R Gold thank you for keeping Anyssa safe, but more importantly thank you for standing up for my home. Guys this is serious, I mean come on. I can't imagine climbing in the canyons, getting done and walking out after dark and looking at this megatropolis. I mean the plan calls for soccer parks with lighting and everything. The days of walking out of my house in Blue Diamond and taking a quit night to walk up the canyons may be numbered. BUILD IN TOWN MR. RHODES keep Red Rock out of it! sign it and lets keep this on the front page, no one will benefit from developing on the hill.

Kurt Burt
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Jul 29, 2011 - 05:38pm PT
I've sent the following individual email to each of the commissioners:

Steve Sisolak, District A, ccdista@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Tom Collins, District B, ccdistb@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Larry Brown, District C, ccdistc@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Lawrence Weekly, District D, ccdistd@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Chris Giunchigliani, District E, ccdiste@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Susan Brager, District F, ccdistf@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Mary Beth Scow, District G, ccdistg@ClarkCountyNV.gov


Dear Commissioner __,

There is a substantial array of problems associated with the Gypsum Reclamation Concept Plan submitted by Gypsum Resources LLC. Surely the failure of the Inspirada, Mountain Edge, Providence, and McDonald Highlands communities as well as the suspension of the Coyote Springs development ought to give pause for a lot of thought, and I imagine the Commission will be getting an earful from local citizens about the deleterious effects of trying to graft a small city onto a rural mountain top.

But I am writing as a tourist from the other end of the country whose interest is in hiking and climbing, a group with thousands of members. From the perspective hikers and climbers, the Red Rock viewshed will be irrevocably scarred by the presence of a small city on top of Blue Diamond Hill. This should not be taken lightly. I and thousands of other climbers make annual trips to Las Vegas specifically to hike and/or climb. We stay in hotels, patronize restaurants, and do some shopping. But the reason we come is that Red Rock offers a climbing experience that is unique in the U.S., and part of this experience is the back-country feel of the long routes combined with the nearby comforts of an urban center. This works because the "urban center," although creeping closer to the park boundaries year by year, is still suitably distant, something that would completely change with the proposed Gypsum Resources development.

Once you urbanize Red Rock, I and countless other climbers and hikers will start looking further afield for our climbing vacations---our tourism dollars will be going elsewhere.

I am hoping that the commissioner's perspective on the viewshed issue is not as myopic as the self-serving analysis in the Gypsum Reclamation Concept Plan, which states (Section 3.11),

In an effort to protect the scenic resources of the area and to minimize any impacts to the surrounding viewshed by proposed development, Gypsum Resources undertook a comprehensive analysis of the Study Area’s geologic and topographic features. Specific attention was directed to potential viewshed impacts associated with the reclamation plan – development that could be visible to motorists along SR 159 and the Red Rock Scenic Loop, bicyclists, pedestrians, hikers, and visitors to the RRCNCA…In summary, the analysis clearly shows that the majority of areas within the project can be developed without compromising the viewshed along SR 159, the Town of Blue Diamond, and the Red Rock Loop.

This analysis embraces the value of protecting "the scenic resources of the area," but then restricts the viewing "corridors" to a few locations below the development, whereas almost everyone who hikes or climbs in Red Rock will be above the development, which will, consequently, be in plain and unobstructed sight.

I might add that the willingness of Gypsum Resources to supply a viewshed analysis that is this faulty cannot help but raise serious questions about the reliability of other analyses in that document. All the fancy maps and pretty colors mean nothing when the evidence has been produced under assumptions that predetermine a favorable outcome.

In Section 1.2 of the Concept Plan, Gypsum Resources says,

The site’s proximity to one of the nations most beautiful and treasured environments provides unique opportunities, challenges, and inherent responsibilities – celebrate the unique qualities of this place.

I don't think all the maps and pretty colors, however diverting, can hide the fact that Gypsum Resources has little interest in the mission it proclaims. It is now up to the Commission to implement the stirring but empty words of this concept plan gone awry. I hope you can find the courage and vision to prevent the increased density proposed in this plan by affirming the existing land use plan and zoning.

RG

--------------------------------------


My take on such things is completely different from all the naysayers who seem to be capable of unlimited amounts of hot air in the service of why they are doing nothing, when they could instead, for whatever it might be worth, at least attempt to influence public policy. Get off yer butts and at least sign the petition folks!
cupton

climber
Where the past and future meet
Jul 29, 2011 - 08:06pm PT
Vegas doesn't have the water to keep growing.

When the Ogallala aquifer dries up we are all pretty screwed... install your rainwater catchment systems now and be self sufficient!
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2011 - 02:45pm PT
Happy to see this post generated some reactions.
Yes, we are up against some powerful interests, but that doesn't mean that public outcry will not make a difference. It does however mean that we need hundreds, no, make that thousands of e-mails in the next few days. Clark county will make a decision on the plan on August 17. Only days left to make your voice heard.

Here's what to do (in that order):
1. write e-mails to Clark county commissioners; see page 1 of this thread for contact info
2. tell your friends to do the same
3. sign the petition: http://www.saveredrock.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=120&Itemid=72
4. send e-mails to congressmen and the BLM; again see page 1 of this thread for contact info
5. if you live reasonably close to Vegas, be at the Clark County zoning commission meeting on August 17, and either speak or wear/carry evidence of your position on the issue.
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2011 - 03:40pm PT
Here's a map showing the proposed development (from the developer's plan), right in the middle of the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.

Hopefully it will make the impact clear!

Jingy

climber
Somewhere out there
Jul 31, 2011 - 04:47pm PT
Everything in the "GOALS + OBJECTIVES + PLANNING PRINCIPLES" section is total ballocks!


Wishy-washy, sham..

Sounds good, but if there are any questions asked, its wait for the answer.

Not much I feel I can do?
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Jul 31, 2011 - 07:19pm PT
you can write some e-mails. That's what you can do. Do it.
philo

Trad climber
Somewhere halfway over the rainbow
Jul 31, 2011 - 07:32pm PT
Or you can believe the "what can one man do" lie we have all been sauteed in our whole lives and just give up.
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Jul 31, 2011 - 08:01pm PT
Eventually water will cost so much that the casinos will move their operations to cheaper locations (the big ones already have).

Vegas is already doomed to becoming a ghost town. The trouble is some people don't have a clue and feel that growth = good.
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 1, 2011 - 01:19pm PT
Let's write some e-mails!
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 1, 2011 - 05:23pm PT
doesn't anybody care?
Captain...or Skully

climber
or some such
Aug 1, 2011 - 07:54pm PT
Find Hayduke. It's your only chance.
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 2, 2011 - 02:55pm PT
Are we all sheep?
Or are we going to do something about this?
The Wedge

Boulder climber
Santa Rosa & Bishop, CA
Aug 2, 2011 - 03:30pm PT
Dingus= I have heard that one before about the water and Mammoth/Bishop. Bishop would not be as small as it is, if it were not for the BLM, LADWP, NF. Mammtoh would look much like Tahoe.

I just finished watching 180 degree south. And am currently living in Vegas while going to nursing school (that will change....im actually moving back to the East Coast to finish my schooling). But last night I went and and hiked to City View Trail in the Henderson neighborhood, with longboard in hand and sweating balls in the 98 degree heat @ 9pm. What I saw behind the hill amazed me.

Developeers behing the "McDonald's private residence area" have completly terraced the landscape behind the hilside to make room for crazy BIG houses. There is alrady multiple paved roads and water lines in the area. But the extent of the terracing and landscaping is amazing. It really does look like an open pit mine. And trust me me mom is a coal miners daughter from W.VA and I have seen a lot of them. There must be 5 foot deep concret retaining walls behind all the massive boulders coving up the actual wall. I did cross my mind to try to boulder some of these wall....but decided against it. It just lame, to the extent developers will go......But like some else said "someone else is going to come along and do it"

We are evolving into a civilazation that will ultimitly kill themselves, once we have exahausted all possible resources.
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 2, 2011 - 07:42pm PT
Ron Anderson: whaaaat?

First: it's not my site, I am simply trying to raise awareness here.

Second: wow, I just checked and you are right; this is new: when I signed the thing a few days ago it did not ask. Thanks for pointing it out. I hate this sort of backdoor fundraising too.

However, it only asks AFTER you sign, and you can simply ignore it.

I'll mention this to the person who set up the petition and see it she can get if fixed.
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 3, 2011 - 10:53am PT
How about writing some e-mails?
Toker Villain

Big Wall climber
Toquerville, Utah
Aug 3, 2011 - 11:30am PT
ericandlucie,

best to not talk about sheep on a rock climbing forum.
It is too distracting.
Splater

climber
Grey Matter
Aug 3, 2011 - 04:53pm PT
Believe it or not, a big enough public protest can make a difference.
If you read the recent history of the Clark county commisioners on development near Red Rock, they do listen when the public gets loud enough. The main victory the developer Rhodes has so far was mainly a legal settlement, not a regular vote.

As Eric&Lucie wrote on the mountainproject thread,
http://www.mountainproject.com/v/red-rock-threatened-by-development/107227001__2
"... in the Las Vegas Review Journal, published on July 7 (full article here: www.lvrj.com/news/rhodes-submits-revised-plan-125130408.html ):
Eight years ago, county commissioners voted to limit the density on Rhodes' land to one home for every two acres. The state passed a statute mirroring the county's code.
Rhodes later filed a lawsuit challenging the restrictions.
Last year, a federal judge struck down the state law and was preparing to rule on the county's code. That prompted commissioners to vote 4-3 to let Rhodes apply for higher-density use.
The reason why this matters, even though I personally am opposed to ANY development on the hill, even at one house per two acres, is that at the lower density, the plan may simply not be financially viable. Also, the lower density zoning reduces the commercial value of the land, and makes it easier for the BLM to offer a swap, assuming they had any interest in doing so (I have not had any answers from them yet)."

http://saveredrock.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=128:voting-2010&catid=1:latest-updates
http://saveredrock.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=40&Itemid=64&limitstart=5
bp

Trad climber
Placerville, Ca
Aug 3, 2011 - 08:07pm PT
Take action here:

http://www.accessfund.org/c.tmL5KhNWLrH/b.5208267/k.8C84/Action_Center/siteapps/advocacy/ActionItem.aspx?c=tmL5KhNWLrH&b=5208267&aid=16339
ericandlucie

Trad climber
Santa Fe, NM
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 3, 2011 - 10:06pm PT
Buuuump!
krahmes

Social climber
Stumptown
Aug 3, 2011 - 10:42pm PT
Good luck with this. I’ve tried to delay a housing development or two in my time. Locals matter and numbers matter. Lawyer up, if you can. Overall traffic impacts is something commissioners are often keenly aware of; hidden development infrastructure costs for water, sewage, roads, and electricity subsidized by current residents should be pointed out; and finally a appeal to elected leaders better angels by pointing out how a urban conservation area is investment in the future of a city scape - are all tacks I’d take if was my ox.
Tobia

Social climber
GA
Aug 3, 2011 - 11:04pm PT
"The guy is a thief. What they are trying to do is get it approved, then to satisfy the environmentalists, do a BLM exchange for better land."

The description of the developer and his scheme by someone who has done business with him.

Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Aug 4, 2011 - 08:43am PT
The Access Fund makes it really easy to send a form letter here

http://www.accessfund.org/c.tmL5KhNWLrH/b.5208267/k.8C84/Action_Center/siteapps/advocacy/ActionItem.aspx?c=tmL5KhNWLrH&b=5208267&aid=16339

If that link does not work just go to http://www.accessfund.org and then click on "Take Action"


obviously its always better to write your own letter.
Basso

Social climber
Laramie, Wyoming
Aug 16, 2011 - 02:33pm PT
I agree that this is very serious, and the fact that it makes no sense is no guarantee that that these greed-heads will not take action. I think massive grass roots action is indicated. All I ever did at RR was deliver and retrieve NOLS climbing camps to the "crappy old campground" back in the 1990. To be honest, I am far more interested in the wild burros and tarantulas than I am in climbers...
rgold

Trad climber
Poughkeepsie, NY
Aug 16, 2011 - 02:47pm PT
As far as I can tell, the Access Fund site is totally inoperative for Red Rock action (Firefox on a Macbook Pro running OSX Lion).

See the various other links upthread instead.
bergbryce

Mountain climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Aug 16, 2011 - 03:12pm PT
Personalized letter sent via Access Fund.

I love Red Rocks. It's really the only reason I'd ever go to that $hithole Vegas.
malabarista

Trad climber
Portland, OR
Aug 16, 2011 - 04:25pm PT
RePost from my email:

Dear Friends of Red Rock Canyon,

The Clark County Commissioners' meeting is tomorrow!

(At which they will be deciding whether to approve or deny the concept plan for high density development on the mountain in the middle of Red Rock, see map.)

Today is your last chance before the meeting to make a difference. If you haven't already, please do what you can to help SAVE RED ROCK!

sign the Petition
contact the commissioners: just write a short note asking them to PLEASE KEEP RED ROCK RURAL!
Emails: ccdista@ClarkCountyNV.gov, ccdistb@ClarkCountyNV.gov, ccdistc@ClarkCountyNV.gov, ccdistd@ClarkCountyNV.gov, ccdiste@ClarkCountyNV.gov, ccdistf@ClarkCountyNV.gov, ccdistg@ClarkCountyNV.gov
Phone: 455-3500
Fax: 455-3271
names, districts, and more
attend the Clark County Commissioner's hearing
August 17 at 9:00 a.m.
Clark County Government Building
500 S. Grand Central Pkwy, LV, NV 89155
wear Red for Red Rock
spread the word
learn more on the Save Red Rock.com website,
network on facebook (Save Red Rock Canyon in search)
forward this email to your friends
Thank you,

Heather Fisher

http://www.saveredrock.com

MORE INFO:

The map:



The concept plan:

The major project submitted to Clark County Commissioners for consideration, proposes a a high density development of over 7000 homes, a university and/or research center, businesses, hotels, condos, and strip malls on the mine mountain in Red Rock Canyon.

The plan does not honor the land use and zoning plans for the area. Nor does the plan honor the local, state and national commitments that led to the creation of the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, an area near and dear to Las Vegas that has become world renown for it's hiking, rock climbing, cycling, nature walks, photography, and natural tourist draw.

This concept plan also defies reason and economics, asks commissioners to jump the Las Vegas infrastructure five miles from what is readily available, adds 7,000 more homes in Southern Nevada when 20,000 homes sit vacant, proposes major competition to our local university system, and adds 20,000 or more people in an area of drought.

If the Commissioners approve this concept plan, Clark County will have compromised it's most magnificent National Conservation Area for the profit of one developer. It's not even a question of taking away property owner rights. This developer already has the right to build on his property, but only in a rural manner just like any other private property owner within the canyon (at one house per two acres). But he is not satisfied with this, and is backing his high density mountain proposal with a marvelous public relations effort, very smart legal maneuverings, and a powerful budget.

The decision the commissioners are scheduled to make on the morning of Aug. 17 will define us all.

So to save Red Rock Canyon, public interest needs to be presented in every available means of communication -- newspaper editorials, emails and phone calls to the commissioners, tweets, blogs, websites and -- above all -- presence at the decision-making event. If we care, now is the time to express our senses of honor, reason and beauty. It is a time for action. (from July 31 Evan Blythin letter to editor in Review Journal)

Sample letter to Commissioners:

(from Nevada Conservation League Action Alerts)

I am asking you to protect Red Rock Canyon by voting against the proposed
Blue Diamond Hill development.

It changes the landscape of a national treasure in our own backyard.
Building 7,000 homes along with commercial centers and industrial shops
would create pollution and congestion right in the middle of one of the
region's most popular hiking, cycling, and rock climbing destinations.

It does not make economic sense. The proposed plan places additional
strain on the already overdeveloped housing market and requires an
expansion of the county's current infrastructure to service a new area.
With home prices at their lowest in 20 years, and with a community still
feeling the impacts of the largest foreclosure crisis our nation has ever
seen, WHY would we approve this development?

It opens the door to future developers trying to break the rules for
building in rural areas. These codes exist to limit the consumption of
limited resources, such as water, in areas with limited access to
resources, as well as to protect the natural character of our most beloved
natural areas.

So please, follow the easy links above to help SAVE RED ROCK FROM MAJOR PROJECT DEVELOPMENT!

Thank you,

Heather Fisher
http://www.saveredrock.com
Sheik aka JD

Trad climber
Los Angeles
Aug 16, 2011 - 05:26pm PT
My wife and I signed the petition and sent the form letter.


(bump)
Chris McNamara

SuperTopo staff member
Aug 16, 2011 - 05:32pm PT
I sent the Access Fund letter and got a response that the comissioner had received it... which surprised me. I feel I rarely get a response when I submit a comment letter to a public agency. So hopefully this is a sign that letters have some impact.
Access Funder

climber
Aug 16, 2011 - 06:28pm PT
Hey everyone,

Thanks for all your letters and support! Please note that if you have an "ad blocker" type plug-in on your browser, our action center may not work. The plug-in seems to identify the letter writing tool as an ad. So fire up your old Explorer or Safari browser if you are having problems. We haven't yet been able to build a workaround for those who use such plug-ins.

Thanks again for your help and support of Red Rocks.

-Access Fund
Peter Astroman

Big Wall climber
Orange County, CA
Aug 16, 2011 - 07:38pm PT
I signed the petition and sent an email to all of the valid (two are not) email addresses in the beginning. This comes under the heading, "All good men have to do to let evil flourish is nothing."
GI Joe

Trad climber
Fairfield CA
Aug 16, 2011 - 08:13pm PT
I was living there and climbing when one block west of Rainbow was desert. We might have monkeywrenched a couple bulldozers when all the golf courses went in but of course there is no stopping it. Sheep, Gila monsters and tortoises be damned. Greed and avarice will never be held in abeyance much less overpowered by environmental concerns. It's over guys. Maybe someone can speak to the climbing question: Are we concerned that the whole loop will be off limits or something?
Ram_a_Dammm

Trad climber
Gyro Town
Aug 17, 2011 - 01:08pm PT
Yes I took a 100ft + falll in the 80's and I have a massive c*#k

Has anyone got a 10incher????
malabarista

Trad climber
Portland, OR
Aug 17, 2011 - 01:12pm PT
I also signed and sent emails and my wife did the same. Let's hope that we can stave this off.
Anastasia

climber
hanging from an ice pick and missing my mama.
Aug 17, 2011 - 01:16pm PT
Why am I skeptical? Nevada is known to be driven by money, built on corruption, etc. In the state of it's economy, I think it will accept anything that might create jobs, etc.

I signed the petition but... It is Nevada, not Oregon.
reddirt

climber
PNW
Aug 17, 2011 - 03:10pm PT
At least one of the commissioners replied w/ "I voted against & will do so again" email.

I'm no economist but if housing prices are already depressed & there's a glut of foreclosure, won't more new houses just dilute the market even further...

then again there could be a demand for lego houses w/ a view, for worse or for worse...
SteveW

Trad climber
The state of confusion
Aug 17, 2011 - 04:42pm PT

What time is the hearing today? Any news???
The

Mountain climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Aug 17, 2011 - 05:36pm PT
Millionaires have a way of coming up with deeds to to public lands, usually under the noses of open space advocates. Even Yosemite has many pockets of this sort of development. At least there it semi-discreet. Vegas's version of discreet will be a slap in the face of all who like the outdoors. How would you like to see a "Swartzenegger" style compound right under your nose, while on pitch 10 of your favorite big wall. Even further, how would you like some millionaire flexing his political clout by trying to get climbing banned in the park simply because he doesn't like people looking down into "his" backyard, invading his privacy. Seem unlikely? Sound like paranoia? Check out this photo of Jasper&I's trip to Denali National Park. This is Denali Village, directly across the river from the park entrance of one of the largest wilderness areas in the world. Its slightly disturbing, so don't look if you can't handle a little reality. Remember, this is only a small piece of "The Village". It extends for a mile in both directions, complete with banners, tourist trash, fancy "exclusive" hotels and more. Seen from the top of the nearby mountains inside the park, it raises hairs on the back of your neck! Vegas style development will have a "plastic" version of this.
rurprider

Trad climber
Mt. Rubidoux
Aug 17, 2011 - 05:57pm PT
I received responses from the commissioners that I emailed. Each indicated that they voted against the development before and will again. But, this developer has a history of buying votes and getting away with it?
SteveW...9AM
reddirt

climber
PNW
Aug 17, 2011 - 06:00pm PT
no earth shattering conclusion yet...

http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2011/aug/17/protesters-lining-criticize-jim-rhodes-planned-dev/

Protesters criticize Jim Rhodes’ planned development near Red Rock

By Joe Schoenmann (contact)

Published Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2011 | 10:05 a.m.

Updated 16 minutes ago

Hundreds of people have shown up at the Clark County Government Center today to protest a plan by Jim Rhodes to develop some 3,000 acres off Blue Diamond Road, near the Red Rock National Conservation Area.

The Clark County Commission began hearing Rhodes’ representatives and their plan for the development about 10 a.m., calling the project an “intelligent, healthy community.”

With hundreds on hand and many of them seeking the opportunity to speak, the board isn’t likely to make a decision for several hours.

The plan is to build homes on Blue Diamond Hill, off State Route 159, the location of the non-operational Blue Diamond Gypsum Mine, a strip-mining operation for 40 to 50 years.

About 300 people live in the tiny community of Blue Diamond. Also located near the proposed development are the tiny hamlets of Calico Basin and Bonnie Springs.

A Rhodes representative described the development as a kind of Shangri-La, the perfect place to live, work and commune with nature and neighbors. A few in the standing-room audience snickered at some of the descriptions, which include:

• "An opportunity to go back" in time, to create a community like in the olden days, "communities that have stood the test of time."

• Creating a community so great that it would attract a world-class school; live-work residential housing; "places to meet neighbors."

• "A model for development and for dealing with future growth."

• Preservation of "the most sensitive areas for open space" -- development would occur largely on areas already decimated by strip mining.

• A business and research park.

Speaking on behalf of the project, Jeremy Aguero, principal with Applied Analysis, discussed the potential economic impact of the project. He said the total cost over 20 years to build-out is about $2.3 billion. And if $1.68 dollars in sales and consumption activity occurs from each dollar of investment -- the historical average -- the project would create $3.9 billion in sales and consumption.

In addition, he said construction of the project would generate 11,900 person-years (one person employed for a year) of employment. Indirectly, the project would create 9,300 jobs, he said.

After Aguero spoke, activist and consultant Lisa Mayo-Deriso criticized his analysis, saying it lacked a cost-benefit projections, including what kind of impact the project would have "next to a national treasure (Red Rock National Conservation Area)."

Another speaker directed his comments at Commission Chairwoman Susan Brager, who earlier pleaded with the audience not to applaud or boo comments. "We get it," Brager had told the crowd.

In response, a speaker said, "With all due respect, Mrs. Brager, we don't think you get it. Nobody in this room thinks you get it."

Many people laughed and applauded the remark, causing Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani, a school teacher, to admonish the crowd to be respectful. "I taught my (school) kids to respect each other," she said. "Applauding, booing for those kind of comments is not respectful."

Attorney Chris Kaempfer, representing the development, reminded commissioners that they lost a legal fight over the property last year.

The county tried to expand a Red Rock protected area to include the gypsum mine area, but the courts said they didn't have that right. In turn, the county signed and agreement with the developer that Kaempfer said means the commissioners "cannot just deny this application. And if you do establish a density, it has to be something that would not be unreasonable."

The current density that the acreage is zoned for --one home per two acres -- isn't reasonable, Kaempfer said, since other major project in the valley average 5.5 homes per acre.

He urged the commission to approve Rhodes' plan for 2.9 homes per acre.

The county's real estate attorney reminded commissioners that what they are dealing with today is only a concept plan. "It's very vague, very general," said Deputy District Attorney Rob Warhola.

The next step would be a more specific plan, in which the county would identify issues and problems, then attach conditions to the plan.
reddirt

climber
PNW
Aug 18, 2011 - 03:27pm PT
the title of the link above ^^^ got changed to
County approves Rhodes’ planned project near Red Rock

& the following sentence was added to the end

The conceptual plan passed 5-2, with Commissioners Lawrence Weekly and Chris Giunchigliani voting against it.
reddirt

climber
PNW
Aug 18, 2011 - 07:33pm PT
some of the comments are pretty interesting & a few are astute...

http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2011/aug/17/protesters-lining-criticize-jim-rhodes-planned-dev/allcomments/
Mighty Hiker

climber
Vancouver, B.C.
Aug 18, 2011 - 07:36pm PT
Thanks, reddirt, for the reports of democracy as it happens.

The county's real estate attorney reminded commissioners that what they are dealing with today is only a concept plan. "It's very vague, very general," said Deputy District Attorney Rob Warhola.

Wanna bet on that? The first, irrevocable step on a slippery slope.
steveA

Trad climber
bedford,massachusetts
Aug 21, 2011 - 08:42am PT
I was just climbing with Jorge and Joanne Urioste, Jorge said that there is very little to worry about on this matter.
malabarista

Trad climber
Portland, OR
Aug 22, 2011 - 08:59pm PT
This should be prevented at all cost. Good candidate for civil disobedience...
YoungGun

Trad climber
Ottawa, ON
Aug 31, 2011 - 02:41pm PT
If you look at Vegas real estate prices in recent history, it's hard to believe even a developer/investor would think this is a good idea...

Vegasclimber

Trad climber
Las Vegas, NV.
Aug 31, 2011 - 03:38pm PT
This has nothing to do with it being a good idea - it's all about Rhodes' ego and continuing to get his way at all costs. The man will lose money just to spite people. He's done it many times and will continue to do so - I think he enjoys it. In addition, he's got more then enough money to buy the votes needed to make it pass.

The problem is, even if we do stop it, then he's going to reopen the mine and go back to tearing the area up even more. And that, can't be stopped in any way shape or form - he has the legal right to mine there.

This is beyond horrible. I think most people know that this is just a stepping stone to allowing building right up to the borders of the park. You might not be able to see the development from the loop road, but if you hike or climb just a little bit higher then that, it's plainly visible.

The housing crash kind of saved Vegas from itself - at peak growth, without the crash, we would have been out of water in less then 10 years. We aren't even sustaining the water now. And this moron wants to build even more houses that only the rich will be able to afford.

Democracy in action. Whee.
N8888B

Sport climber
Las vegas
Sep 6, 2011 - 01:12am PT
As a former developer in Vegas, I can assure you that NOTHING is happening with new construction. Vegas is a sinking ship. I bought a house last week at auction for 1/3 of what it would cost to build it. No developer is dumb enough to try and build given cost and excess inventory out there...in a town with negative job growth.

It's not happnin
ruppell

climber
Sep 6, 2011 - 01:25am PT
It's not happening right now. I think the idea is to get the planning approved. Once that's done there is an unlimited time line to follow through. So it sits for ten years. The guy already owns the land. Housing prices go up. Homes get built. People buy them. It would be pretty sweet if you had the capital to sit on it till the "economic downturn" is over.
steveA

Trad climber
bedford,massachusetts
Sep 6, 2011 - 10:00am PT
Bruce Kay

I'm just repeating what Jorge Urioste said to me. I assume he must have a good "feel" on the situation since he lives in Vegas.
As you probably know, Jorge and his wife put in many of the classics in RR.
bergbryce

Mountain climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Mar 6, 2012 - 01:43pm PT
What doesn't stay in Vegas?? Sprawl.

Watch Las Vegas "grow" from space. This is a time lapse video from the Landsat satellites which have been in orbit, shooting pictures of the earth since the early 1970s. For land cover change geeks, it's been a consistent data source for decades.

Any of you folks who remember when Red Rock was still a ways out of town BITD will appreciate this.

Just a reminder that this world class climbing area will probably always be under threat of development.

[Click to View YouTube Video]
couchmaster

climber
pdx
Mar 6, 2012 - 03:37pm PT
Cosmic Log

On this web site "Cosmic Log" usually has a different meaning LOL. Thanks for that NASA link on Red Rocks/Las Vegas sprawl- good stuff.
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