Self-Storage Developer Big Idea LLC Fights for Sedona Cool Storage in Oak Creek, AZ

Self-storage developer Big Idea LLC intends to move forward with building Sedona Cool Storage at 75 E. Cortez Dr. in the Village of Oak Creek, Ariz., despite losing a variance request and plenty of residential opposition to the project. The Yavapai County Board of Adjustment recently denied the developer’s request to reduce the setback requirement from 20 to 10 feet, according to the source.

Self-storage developer Big Idea LLC intends to move forward with building Sedona Cool Storage at 75 E. Cortez Dr. in the Village of Oak Creek, Ariz., despite losing a variance request and plenty of residential opposition to the project. The Yavapai County Board of Adjustment recently denied the developer’s request to reduce the setback requirement from 20 to 10 feet, according to the source.

Though the property is already zoned for self-storage, Big Idea asked for the setback variance because the lot is long and narrow. In a letter to senior planner Tammy DeWitt, project engineer Tom Pender also asked for a height consideration up to 50 feet above grade to align with allowances on other structures within the same zone, calling the discrepancy a “hardship.” The current plan is to build a three-story facility with one floor below ground, the source reported.

“The unnecessary hardship relates to the enjoyment of the property rights,” Pender wrote. “Specifically, the local residences favor/require architectural enhancements. We are cognizant of this and stand willing to meet their desires. In addition to this, the [building code] limits the height of the exposed building to 30 feet, where other buildings within the same zone and architecture are allowed to extend to 50 feet above grade.

“This is adversely impacting the enjoyment of property rights afforded to the surrounding properties,” he continued. “At this point we are willing to meet these impositions. We are doing so with the hope of relief from the setback. We sincerely believe the issuance of the variance will provide this property with the fair and equitable treatment mitigating the loss of property rights that our neighbors are enjoying.”

The Big Park Regional Coordinating Council, which acts as a village council in the unincorporated area, recommended the board reject the variance because it didn’t agree there was a hardship. DeWitt also noted she received 25 e-mails prior to the hearing, with just two showing support. In all, 20 e-mails opposed the plan and three requested more information, according to the source.

Pender indicated the developer would revise its plan and move forward with construction. “We appreciate the folks in the village,” he told the board. “They want to be involved, want to have something that looks good to them. We’re not trying to shove something down their throats.”

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