Board OK’s 182-Site RV Park in Washington

May 6, 2011 by   - () Comments Off on Board OK’s 182-Site RV Park in Washington

After months of debate, Thursday night (May 5) the Benton County Board of Adjustment unanimously voted in favor of a proposed RV park and petting zoo in Badger Canyon near Kennewick, Wash.

After much deliberation, the board approved the special use permit for the new owners, KNDO-TV, Pasco, Wash., reported. The 25-acre park in Kennewick will have 182 spaces for temporary use. The board says they’ll need to follow some guidelines, including using gas burning fire pits and getting their landscaping plan approved by the city. But neighbors are worried it will affect traffic, property values and potentially increase crime.

“I think it’s just going to take time for residents to realize that their fears are unfounded. We are going to be good neighbors and the community is going to benefit as wells as us,” said Charlotte Schlotfeldt, owner of proposed RV park with her husband, Dave.

As for the petting zoo the Board of Adjustment asks the owners to limit the animals to only farm animals.

More than a dozen people attended Thursday’s hearing to watch but no public testimony was allowed, the TriCity Herald reported.

The board’s decision, in which Chairman Brent Chigbrow did not participate because of a potential perceived conflict of interest, did not surprise the Schlotfeldts.

“We were comfortable going in because we did our homework on the zoning,” Dave Schlotfeldt said.

The board declared the project appropriate because it was compatible with the area, was allowed by the zoning under a special use permit and was less intrusive than other permitted uses such as retail stores and motels, which would be allowed on the property.

The 25 acres is adjacent to I-82 and the eastbound exit at Badger Canyon.

But the board had some hesitation about some aspects of the project as proposed.

As approved, the project will have gas-fired firepits instead of using wood and only common small farm animals will be allowed in the petting zone.

The board also will not allow tent cabins, required fencing with landscape buffering, and agreed to give the Schlotfeldts up to 180 days for the maximum length of stay for RVers instead of the county staff’s recommended 120 days.

The Schlotfeldts orginally requested a maximum stay of 12 months out of a 14-month period.

“I am totally fine with the fencing and landscaping, and the gas-fired firepits is not an issue,” Dave Schlotfeldt said.

“We would have liked the stay to be longer, but it’s workable,” he added.

Schlotfeldt said the fact that the board did not even mention the alleged traffic or child predators concerns showed those issues “were not warranted.”

With approval of the board of adjustment, Schlotfeldt said work will begin on engineering with ground breaking to start in the middle or late summer.

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