Red Rocks under imminent threat of development


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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

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?

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????

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.

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.

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...

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

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

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.

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?

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

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.

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.

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

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.

Trad climber
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.

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

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...


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.

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 a town with negative job growth.

It's not happnin
Messages 61 - 80 of total 84 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
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