Town board explores de-annexation of Martin Lind property
February 6, 2014
Developer Martin Lind met with the Windsor Town Board on Jan. 27 to discuss the possibility of de-annexing a northern portion of the Zeiler Farms Second Annexation, located just north of U.S. 34 between Weld County roads 13 and 17.
While Town Manager Kelly Arnold told the board that it is rare a town would pursue de-annexation, this case made sense because Lind was proposing to transfer the 500-unit sewer density from the property to the Water Valley West subdivision to the north, which Arnold said would bring more density to the core of Windsor.
Lind also sought de-annexation so agricultural uses like livestock and crop spraying can continue on the property and proposed placing a deed restriction on the property to ensure future agricultural use will continue and the property can remain undeveloped. Since the sewer capacity would be transferred to the north, the only way the land could be developed in the future is if the necessary sewer infrastructure is built out to the property.
"As a town, you really never want to practice de-annexation," Arnold said. "The flip side of that though is it makes sense. You can get there logically … What it does is bring more density into the core of the community, so that you're reducing density on the outside the core of the community … It's going to provide more infill opportunity."
Board member Myles Baker asked if there was a way to put a first-right-of-refusal condition on the property to protect the town from future unwanted uses of the property. Town Attorney Ian McCargar said a plan to protect the town was included in the proposed amendment.
"If uses are proposed that are in violation of specific codes, that they would be required to pursue re-annexation and then what we do at that point is force it, essentially, back in by agreement. Those uses can't take place within the Town of Windsor and then we deal with what we do with it now."
Board member Jeremy Rose asked why the deed restriction was preferable to a conditional use grant, and McCargar said the deed restriction would apply even if Lind transferred the property to a new owner, essentially keeping the area an agricultural buffer into the future.
Lind spoke to the board about the proposal, saying if the land was to be developed with 600 homes standing two miles away from the nearest services would be bad planning.
He said the town would have protection from any unwanted development in the future because if a future owner wanted to try and change the zoning or uses agreed upon by Lind and the town, that owner would have to come before the board.
"If you want to change any of that, you can't apply to anybody but Windsor," Lind said.
Arnold said the proposal is still being refined and would likely come before the board again within the next two months.