PROBLEMS WITH THE PROPOSED DEVELOPMENT
- According to Ada County Code, planned communities must fulfill certain requirements. The Dry Creek Ranch does not meet these requirements and therefore, in its current state, it must be considered a "subdivision" rather than a "planned community." This new plan for a new subdivision proposed in 2016 is (because of various time extensions made by the previous owner) held to the standards of Ada County's 1997 Comprehensive Plan.
- The original application was approved in 2010. Since then, the developer has changed, the number of houses has changed, the acreage has changed, the number of schools has changed, the square footage of commercial space has changed. All of these changes are substantial. Boise Hunter Homes must use this old approval because The Ada County Planning and Zoning Commission has stated that were Boise Hunter Homes to apply as a new application, the project would be denied. Boise Hunter Homes's proposed development is different enough from the original application that it should be considered a new application, rather than an "amendment" to the original application.
- Boise Hunter Homes touts a unique "farm-to-table" vision for their subdivision whilst destroying some of the best farmland we have in Ada County. Two organic farms in the area, Peaceful Belly Farm and Fiddler's Green Farm, both oppose the development.
- The City of Boise has expressed objections to the original approval as well as this most recent amendment, stating that: “The Council continues to believe that development of this intensity should be limited to existing cities where infrastructure exists to accommodate this level of development." The City of Boise lists concerns about land use, transportation, and wastewater treatment.
- The subdivision will destroy critical wildlife habitat. WildLands Defense believes Boise Hunter Homes's wildlife mitigation plan is insufficient. The plan calls for off-site easements in lieu of direct on-site mitigation and 520 acres of off-site easements. Their conservation easement plan is just as insufficient. Boise Hunter Homes will provide $20,000 for a conservation fund with one catch: the $20,000 is a loan that must be repaid.
98% of food consumed in Idaho is not grown here. In order to change this statistic, we need farmland. The prime farmland found in the Dry Creek Valley is arguably the best farmland in Ada County. The Boise Co-op and the Boise Farmers Market both testified at the public hearing in opposition to this development.
To accommodate this development, State Highway 55 would have to be widened to a four-lane highway. Many members of the community, including the North End Neighborhood Association are worried about the traffic burden this development would place on neighboring communities. Since no public transportation option is available, the other roads leading to the Dry Creek Valley - Cartwright Road, Dry Creek Road, Seaman's Gulch Road, and Hill Road - would also become congested with cars as the thousands of people who live in this subdivision commute to and from neighboring cities. The subdivision is estimated to generate 20,518 net new car trips daily.