The Peoria City Council approved a general plan amendment for the former site of Linden Tree Nursery, redesignating the area employment business commerce from traditional residential, possibly paving the way for Arrowhead RV and Boat Storage.
The rezone will be discussed at a future Peoria City Council meeting, which has yet to be set, according to Chris Jacquez, Peoria’s planning director.
The general plan amendment moved forward without the associated rezone, because the plan will be considered by voters during the general election in November, according to Jacquez.
From May to November, the council will not consider general plan amendments because of the election.
“If the rezone does not move forward or the case otherwise stalls, the city would take action to revert the land use back to residential,” Jacquez said.
The subject site is at 11150 W. Beardsley Road, an area surrounded by other industrial sites and operations, just east of the Ventana Lakes single-family residential community.
The build will include a recreational vehicle and boat storage facility on 21.1 acres, including a combination of enclosed, covered and uncovered recreational vehicle parking spaces.
Ventana Lakes residents expressed concern about the increase in traffic and noise from the 24/7 operation.
“Our view would be diminished by any industrial, manufacturing, storage, office, etc.,” Cathy Seaborn, a Ventana Lakes resident, said in an email to Rick Williams, the project’s senior planner.
“We are quite unhappy with the possibility of having that type of business rising over the back wall. Again, it is unsightly, unacceptable and will undoubtedly affect our property values negatively.”
Another resident, Teresa Lovell, told the Peoria Times she is not opposed to the build if they address the community’s concerns.
“I am opposed to the amount of heavy traffic on roads that are not built to support such a high amount,” Lovell added. “I have lived here since ’04 and can’t think of a year where we have had complete access to that road. If they are changing the zoning laws, there should be some kind of modifications so the impact to existing residents is minimal. We purchased our homes with the idea that this was residential, and now it’s light industrial.”
City Councilman Jon Edwards said he was concerned that, given the pandemic, residents were unable to express their complaints appropriately.
“We have committed to follow back up with both the board and residents,” answered Jason Morris of Withey Morris PLC, who represents the owners. “I will reach out to the HOA, and we will offer a virtual meeting. We’ll do individual calls with residents on that eastern boundary so that we’ve answered their questions completely.”
City officials and Morris said surrounding residential areas will benefit from the “neighborhood-friendly” and “low-intensity” commercial amenity.
And Arrowhead RV will provide employment opportunities through its facility and generate sales taxes, which will increase Peoria’s tax base and revenues while benefiting local school districts.
A meeting with over a dozen residents and board members from the HOA of Ventana Lakes residential community earlier this year came to unanimous vote concluding they were “fine” with the new development project, according to an email sent to Ventana Lake residents from the board.
“We back right up to that land, and I just cannot fathom the visual aspects and the noise,” Lee Sanderson, a resident of Ventana Lakes, said during a video conference.
“We found this place so peaceful, and we’re just really concerned.”