The project’s applicant, along with Dennis Bank’s Construction and Rubicon Design Group, asked that the original special-use permit be amended because of unforeseen circumstances, including issues with financing, clarifying property ownership and a gas main that needed to be removed after approval from the Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT).
“To a passerby it would look like nothing out there has happened since we were here since 2009,” said Mike Railey with Rubicon Design Group. “What people haven’t seen is that Terrible Herbst has filed bankruptcy since the permit was approved.”
Railey explained that the bankruptcy held up property rights and clarifications of ownership in a legal battle.
“Essentially those issues have been held up in court,” Railey said. “Those issues have been settled now and we can moved forward.”
In addition to going to court for property rights, Railey said a decommissioned gas line needed to be removed from the property located on the corner of Pyramid Way and La Posada in Spanish Springs. The gas line was located within NDOT’s right of way and permission was needed to remove it. Railey said obtaining permission cost the project six months, time he said the owners and contractors are ready to make up.
“One comment they have heard is about the fence around the site, and as a resident of Spanish Springs, I understand it is unsightly,” Railey said. “But right now it is an OSHA requirement because there are site wells on the site.”
Currently, the contractors are working to finalize landscaping and move forward with cleaning up the site in the spring.
“By extending this request, it will allow us to move on with the construction and get the project done,” Railey said.
Washoe County Senior Planner Sandra Monsalve said the county recommended approval of the amendment, even though it had received overwhelming objection to the project throughout the special-use permit approval and amendment process.
“The Spanish Springs Citizen Advisory Board heard this request at their Jan. 12, 2011 meeting and the request was not approved by the citizen advisory board,” Monsalve said, adding that NAI Alliance, a property management firm, also had contacted her stating their opposition to the project.
“Staff has been able to complete the required findings for this request and is recommending approval to this request,” Monsalve said.
During the public comment session of the meeting, no one from Spanish Springs who had objected to the bar and grill at CAB meetings spoke.
Board of Adjustment member Richard Cieri asked Monsalve if the chain link fence currently surrounding the undeveloped property was in violation of the special-use permit because of a condition that a permanent fence be installed to reduce people cutting through the property. Monsalve said the project was not in violation until the permit expires on June 1, pending amendment.
Railey said with the amendment the project would move forward immediately, removing the chain link fence in about 60 days.
“I see in the notes to the CAB that there is still two years left to complete this project,” said member Kim Toulouse. “Is that accurate?”
“No, there was an error made,” Monsalve said. “The permit expires on June 1.”
Cieri also asked Railey why the applicant picked three years to complete the project.
“It was recommended to us that it was a reasonable time frame,” Railey said, adding that since the special-use permit was approved in 2009, the project’s architect went out of business, causing developers to completely redo the bar and grill’s plans.
“We would be agreeable to a two-year time frame too,” Railey said. “Now that we do know a little bit more about what has been found on site, we don’t foresee anything else really slowing us up.”
Board member Robert Wideman winced as he spoke to Railey.
“I have received a few e-mails about this amendment today in similar condition to the opposition about the project when we first heard it,” Wideman said. “I am not opposed to a time extension but I am more comfortable with the two-year mark.”
Wideman motioned to approve the amendment under the stipulation that the project be completed by June 1, 2013. The board unanimously approved the amendment that will allow the La Posada Bar and Grill to get on track with construction and open it’s door 24 hours a day.
An appeal can be submitted to the Washoe County Board of Commissioners by calling 328-6100.