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Clark County Rural Streets Study seeks input of Lone Mountain-area residents on rural neighborhood needs

Erin DeLoe and her husband, Matthew, moved to the Lone Mountain area in 2014 to raise their children in a low-density area with rural qualities. She said she enjoys being able to walk down the street to pet another neighbor’s calf, goats or horses. She likes seeing desert wildflowers grow on her street instead of having sidewalks. But a lot has changed since 2010.

As areas are slowly being annexed into the city, many feel the community is left voiceless, which is why the Clark County Rural Streets Study was designed. It seeks feedback from residents living in the Lone Mountain area — designated a Rural Neighborhood Preservation area — on what alternative street designs might help serve the community, or if the current street standards are adequate.

“The study is an attempt at public outreach to showcase what we, as a community, feel the rural standard should be,” said Clark County Commissioner Larry Brown during an April 19 Commission District C neighborhood meeting. “Designers will use these standards as a starting point for future designs.”

The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada is leading the study in collaboration with Clark County. The RTC has contracted with a consulting firm to help with community engagement and to develop proposed street standards.

“As development continues in the northwest, the RTC and Clark County are interested in learning how streets are currently utilized and how they might better serve the community if alternative improvement options were made available,” said Craig Raborn, RTC planning manager.

Anyone residing in the Lone Mountain rural area is invited to participate by visiting lonemountain.woodpolls.com. The deadline to participate is June 1.

The study area is bounded by the 215 Beltway to the north and west, Alexander Road to the south and Durango Drive to the east.

As a designated Rural Neighborhood Preservation area, the community focuses on maintaining a lower-density and rural character compared to more urban areas of the valley.

“If Clark County adopts any new street design standards, following the completion of the study, future homebuilders will be required to abide by the new standards and construct neighborhoods that reflect or complement the street standards,” Raborn said. “More importantly, homebuilders are excited about the standards study, as it can potentially provide uniformity and consistency in the Lone Mountain rural area.”

Following the completion of the study, the RTC plans to present it to Clark County for potential further action.

“We anticipate that recommendations from the study could be used to inform the development of Clark County street standards for Lone Mountain and potentially other Rural Neighborhood Preservation areas,” Raborn said.

At the meeting, residents expressed their love of the rural community and their distrust for new homebuilders.

“I love that it’s rural, quiet and dark, and there are no street lights or sidewalks and there are plenty of horses,” said one resident.

“(Homebuilder) DR Horton shouldn’t be coming in,” said another resident.

When asked what improvements could be made to the community, residents raised their voices: “We just want to preserve our community the way it is.”

“Our focus is to build consistency for RNP areas, not to go back and try to fix inconsistencies,” Brown said.

Residents were left with concerns regarding the study, mainly the question of who’s to say what standards will be used?

“This study that is being done is almost like, well, what for? If the city keeps annexing, we will lose our rural preservation district completely,” said resident Teresa Krolak-Owens.

“We are all quite distressed about the land being scooped up by builders to build subdivisions that are not congruent with the County Rural Preservation District building standards,” Krolak-Owens said. “This BLM land was ‘somehow’ easily annexed by the city, and since there is no inter-local agreement in place anymore between the city and county, the builders, when they purchase this now-city land, can build whatever they want, which 99 percent of the time does not conform to the rural standards.”

Call Raborn at 702-676-1715 or email rabornc@rtcsnv.com. Visit bit.ly/1Og6l17.

To reach North View reporter Sandy Lopez, email slopez@viewnews.com or call 702-383-4686. Find her on Twitter: @JournalismSandy.

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