27-Site RV Park Project Called 'Low Impact Use'

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January 7, 2010 by   - () Leave a Comment

Citing the Cordes Junction community plan, the Yavapai County Planning and Zoning Commission on Wednesday (Jan. 6) approved a proposal for a 27-site RV campground in Cordes Junction, Ariz., 40 miles north of Phoenix.

Sam and Tina Knoy of Prescott hope to open the business on the south side of Highway 69, less than a mile from the interchange between Highway 69 and Interstate 17 in Cordes Junction. The facility would operate seven days a week, employ two or three people and include a caretaker's house, according to The Daily Courier, Prescott.

Sam Knoy said he'd already spoken to the business community and added that the project would be good for the county's economy, attracting tourist dollars from wealthy RV fanciers heading down I-17.

"The sooner we do this, the sooner we put local people to work," Knoy said.

Michael Haywood, a surveyor who represents the Knoys, called the project a "low-impact use" that is consistent with Arizona's Dark Sky law. Several other area property owners support the proposal because they hope to eventually develop their properties for business uses as well, Haywood said.

However, Dave Hamernick, who lives near the property and owns another 400 acres adjacent to it, said that he was concerned with how much water the RV campground would use, traffic on Highway 69 and maintaining an easement to his land that abuts the site.

"We know there is going to be change here," Hamernick said. "But this is dramatic change to a rural, residential area." The 27 campers would cause a "substantial increase in water withdrawal" that Hamernick believes would not be sustainable. "To us this is a dramatic and irreversible change," he said and asked the board to postpone a decision on the campground.

William Taylor, another neighbor, also objected to how much water the campground would use and how the campground might change the character of the area. The park might eventually become "a lot of dumpy trailers," he said.

In response to the neighbors' concerns, Haywood said the Knoys will honor Hamernick's easement and build a driveway along it. And the Arizona Department of Transportation may install a right turn lane on Highway 69. Randy Schurr, a lawyer for the county, said in this case the amount of water used by the facility is not within the commissioners' purview.

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