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Statement of Friends of Grant Creek Regarding 2920 Expo Parkway

In March of this year, during the approval process of a development similar in size to the buildable area of the two parcels comprising 2920 Expo Parkway, Mayor John Engen was quoted in the Missoulian as saying: “In the end, I think we'll end up with a neighborhood where people not only can live but want to live. I would like all Missoulians to be proud of where they live, comfortable where they live, feel that their housing is of a quality that reflects the dignity of what they deserve.”

The Friends of Grant Creek (FOGC) have that same goal, not only for themselves, but for the potential residents of the housing to be built at 2920 Expo Parkway. To that end FOGC favors the existing zoning for 2920 Expo Parkway because:

  • it will provide a mix of housing, including up to 150 single-family homes on individual lots, that is compatible with existing neighborhoods;

  • it provides opportunities for much needed home ownership;

  • the development of the north parcel as zoned will require planning and subdivision review which should result in a better-quality planned neighborhood for the residents and adjacent residents and businesses;

  • the allowed units (200-300 apartments on the south lot and 150 homes on the north lot) would almost double the existing number of housing units in Grant Creek, would stretch capacity of existing roadways and more than meet the Grant Creek neighborhoods’ share of needed housing in the community; and,

  • most importantly, the allowed units, along with the other already approved and permitted residential and commercial units, will already significantly increase traffic, including congestion affecting evacuation in the case of wildfire in the Grant Creek area. See Wildfire Statement as adopted by the FOGC Board on April 26, 2021 (the “Wildfire Statement”).

The FOGC could possibly support a development proposal that provides for a different mix of housing if:

  • the rezoning application is accompanied by subdivision review or similar process that results in adequate public improvements and amenities identified in a recordable agreement that is binding and enforceable by the City, residents and neighbors;

  • there is opportunity for home ownership in the housing mix;

  • the number of total units does not contribute to poor traffic circulation and safety issues for residents, school buses, utility and emergency vehicles as determined by an updated traffic study;

  • there would not be final approval until an updated traffic study (taking into consideration traffic from both ski season and summer traffic) shows that existing and proposed roadways can safely handle the amount of additional traffic to be generated by proposed rezoning;

  • there is adequate recreation and open space and dog walking areas;

  • adequate consideration is made for needs and concerns of Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation;

  • the total number of allowed units along with the already approved and permitted residential and commercial units (e.g., motels) do not significantly increase dangers posed for evacuation in the case of wildfire in the Grant Creek area as described in the Wildfire Statement;

  • the developer and property owners waive the right to protest the creation of special improvement districts for traffic and roadway improvements; and

  • impact fees assessed against the developer are adequate to cover the development’s share of traffic and other infrastructure improvements and they are actually dedicated for that purpose.

FOGC invited KJA Development, LLC, to present its proposal to the membership of FOGC. The FOGC Board has subsequently offered comments, suggestions and requests with respect to the proposed rezoning and the related Development Agreement and will continue to do so before the Development Agreement is submitted to the City, if provided the opportunity, or after the Agreement is submitted if necessary.

The FOGC cannot and will not abrogate the right of individual property owners within the community to protest any proposed rezoning, nor can it guarantee that members of FOGC or the Board will not object to a proposed rezoning, if the concerns of the FOGC or individuals are not addressed.

 

 

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

 
Any changes to the zoning map, or rezonings, require a public review and approval process.

This is your opportunity to ensure Grant Creek is developed responsibly and as planned. If the rezone application is approved, the public no longer has a voice in future development.

FOGC Petition Supporting Existing Zoning at 2920 Expo Parkway

 

ipetition

 

 

STAY INFORMED

  • Familiarize yourself with the process and understand how rezoning decisions are guided


Code of Ordinances - Zoning - Residential Districts

Zoning Amendments - G. Review Criteria

Missoula Growth Policy


Grant Creek Area Plan 


Long Range Transportation Plan


Climate Ready Missoula Plan 

Grant Creek Neighborhood Resources

BECOME A FRIEND OF GRANT CREEK

  • Stay informed through the FOGC website and resources provided here.

  • FOGC will let members know when the public process begins, when the rezoning application is scheduled to be before the Land Use & Planning Committee and when City Council convenes for a discussion and decision on the rezone application.

 

PROVIDE PUBLIC COMMENT*

Write a letter/email each city council member, Missoula Development Services and Mayor Engen, and submit comments on the Engage Missoula* website.