Homeowners Voice Opposition to Red Rock Development Plans

LAS VEGAS - A verbal tirade erupted Wednesday night against a developer who wants to transform a mountain community. Residents of Blue Diamond Hill are upset developer Jim Rhodes wants to build a massive housing complex in the area.

Residents heard revised plans by Rhodes for the area that overlooks the Red Rock National Conservation Area. The plans call for roughly 7,000 new homes in multiple villages that also include businesses, schools, and a college.

"It's leapfrog development," said Red Rock Citizens Advisory Council Chairwoman Barbara Luke. "There are 20,000 empty homes in the valley right now. It doesn't make sense."

"It's just absurd to put it at this time in this place in Red Rock Canyon," another resident said.

"You're going to have one road going in and out. You're lying to us. There's another road up your sleeve. It's gonna' happen," another resident added.

Gypsum Resources urban planner Ron Krater, a spokesperson for the ambitious development plan, made a presentation at the meeting to nearly 100 residents. None of them spoke in favor of the project, but Krater stood his ground and defended the concept plan.

"We're going to take all the comments here to heart, very seriously," he said. "As I've said tonight, we can't answer many of the questions tonight, because it's inappropriate at this point in the process to answer those. That would infer at this point that I have a lot more detail than we do at this point. We're going to take all those comments to heart, and we're going to see to incorporate many of those comments into specific plans moving forward."

Residents' concerns include: maintaining the conservation area as is and public infrastructure like water supply and roads. They also expressed concerns about the length of time it would take to complete this project. It's estimated to take 20 to 30 years.

Some neighbors are concerned the project could run out of money mid-stream, leaving them to look at half-constructed buildings instead of a scenic view. The vision presented on Rhodes' behalf has already been in the works for several years, and he's overcome several legal hurdles to get to this point.

Wednesday's meeting was informational, but the Red Rock Advisory Council unanimously voted against the plan. That recommendation will be considered by the Clark County Commission when it hears the proposal next month.


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