Mayor: Lack of Industrial Land Could Push Businesses Out

City and county leaders said Tuesday that the Brady Trucking zoning fight is a perfect example of what's to come as the city grows--private property rights versus a community vision.

It could be next Spring before Grand Junction city council members decide on the Comprehensive Plan, and until then, they say we could see more land disputes.

It's only one 12-acre piece of land on 27 1/2 and C 1/2 Road that's stirred up controversy.

"This is just not where we need to have a large trucking facility," said Candi Clark, who lives across the river from a proposed industrial expansion on the riverfront.

"Groups shouldn't be able to tell you what to do with your property," Brady Trucking Regional Manager Russ Justice told 11 News Monday.

Controversy that amounted to more than three hours of public testimony at the Grand Junction city council meeting on Monday night.

Neighbors worried about the noise and the aesthetics of the river, and business owners frustrated because they need to expand.

City leaders say this fight is just the beginning and as Grand Junction gets bigger, pieces of land across the community could be cause for debate.

"We have to plan for industrial areas in the community and we're doing that through the growth plan. Part of the comprehensive plan is to decide where should it be?" said Mayor Gregg Palmer after a meeting at the Two Rivers Convention Center on Tuesday/

He says it's more than a battle between neighbors and the consequences could have a big impact on the local economy. Palmer and other city and county leaders said if manufacturing and industrial based businesses have nowhere to go, the Grand Valley could lose that sector of high-paying jobs.

"There's a lot of growth pressure happening right now and we can't just stop all of the growth while we wait for the comprehensive plan," said Palmer.

But council members agree a solution won't come overnight and until it does, it's one dispute at a time.

There are two public meetings on the Comprehensive Growth plan, July 16th and 17th.

Meanwhile, by law the city has 90 days to settle the zoning dispute with Brady Trucking after Monday night's deadlock vote of three to three.

Stay tuned to 11 News for the outcome of this zoning battle.


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