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10/13/15

Good evening, COGS E News Readers. Where will you be Sunday, October 25th? How about this Thursday evening? Have you read your Bond Election informational booklet?   Are you still wondering if that SRP electrical substation on Camelback Road will ever be moved?

THE COGS ANNUAL POTLUCK is  Sunday, October 25th beginning at 5 PM.  You are encouraged to come whether a COGS E-Newsletter reader or a paid $10 annual dues member.  It is a dynamic gathering of adults who care about their city.  Previous years have proven great talents in the kitchen as the casseroles, salads and desserts are amazing. The location is on a private home patio near downtown Scottsdale.  Feel free to bring friends. When you RSVP to cogs@cogsaz.net we will send you the address.

Thursday 15 October 7 pm  The  Community Council of Scottsdale hosts Scottsdale Police Department speakers Sherry Cross, Police Aide for District 1 and Travis Kerby, Crime Prevention Officer for District 1. They will be speaking on personal safety tips, crime trends happening within Southern Scottsdale, and updates on the Neighborhood Watch program.  Attend and learn how your area police team protects your neighborhood. The meeting is in the Granite Reef Senior Center  on NW corner of McDowell Road and Granite Reef Road in Room 8.

The Transportation Master Plan provides a vision and guide to the community’s residents, businesses, and officials as Scottsdale’s transportation system grows and develops in the future.  The discussions that COGS attended included (1) narrowing Scottsdale Road to two lanes through the Downtown (2) continuing the discussion to widen Chaparral Road through Villa Monterey. You can learn more and provide feedback as the update is drafted at a series of meetings through November.  Meetings, hosted by the city’s Transportation Commission, will be at 6 p.m. in the City Hall Kiva, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd., on the following dates:

  • Thursday, Oct. 15 – General Discussion
  • Thursday, Nov. 5 – General Discussion
  • Thursday, Nov. 19 – Final Discussion and Recommendation

Scottsdale Video Network Channel 11 will televise meetings live.  Based on the input received, a final plan will be prepared for adoption by the City Council.  Learn more by visiting www.ScottsdaleAZ.gov and searching “transportation master plan.”

Special Bond Election Early Ballots should have been received if you requested it. You are asked to approve or disapprove a variety of bond-funded civic improvements totaling $95.960 million.  Oct. 5 was the last day to register to vote in the election and October 23rd is the last day to request an early ballot by US Postal mail.  October 30 is the last day to cast an early ballot AT AN EARLY VOTING SITE such as our city hall in Civic Center. For more information on Scottsdale’s Special Election, go to the city’s home page at www.ScottsdaleAZ.gov and search “elections.”

What is happening to the vacant land where the Camelback Road SRP electrical substation is near Scottsdale Road? History: Approximately ten years ago the Solis project with canal-side condos and a hotel/restaurant was proposed. The existing substandard rental complex created a negative impact on the neighborhood. Local businessman and neighborhood activist, Bill Crawford worked with the late Scottsdale City Councilman Tony Nelssen, the developer and his attorney for a resolution. The developer agreed to demolish the structures, which resulted in immediate relief to the neighborhood. Finally, the Solis project was approved by council when the great recession of 2008 caused financing for condos to dried up, commitments for construction loans to disappear and the project to stall. Unfortunately, the developer was unable to retain control over the project and a bank ultimately took ownership. Seven years has passed, and the dirt site remains vacant to this day.

Update:The property was purchased by developer, Shawn Yari, late last year.  Similar to the Solis, the Water View is a combination of hotel (at least a 4 star) and residential condos compatible with the surrounding neighborhood. Compared to the previously approved Solis project, Water View reduces the height of the residential units and the hotel. There will be two levels of underground parking.  COGS attended the Open House and noted that the approximately one acre of open space at the north end of the site remains as a bonus to the adjacent neighborhood. Additionally there is a  proposed pedestrian bridge over the AZ Canal . Yes, the substation remains.

Opinion: (quote) “ I am grateful there is finally a resolution to a ten year problem. The empty site has depressed adjacent property values for a decade. We are fortunate to have a developer with the desire and financial capability to finally complete this development. The developer is not asking for any financial assistance from the city. Downtown Scottsdale, and the surrounding businesses will benefit from the upscale visitors and residents this will bring. The City of Scottsdale will receive income from bed tax and sales tax that will contribute to the greater good of the entire city...” Bill Crawford  Owner Basic Training.

Opinion  COGS encourages our city to seek the thousands of landscape improvement funds that SRP has available for substations. This is a highly visible location that shouts for visual improvement. What needs to be done to make this happen?

For the Coalition of Greater Scottsdale (COGS) Board of Directors, 

     Sonnie Kirtley, Chair e-mail sonniek@cogsaz.net 

     Coalition of Greater Scottsdale

     7904 E. Chaparral Rd., Suite 110, PMB 127

     Scottsdale, AZ 85250

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