City planning board gives initial OK for truck wash facility; Little Shell event center

Annexation of 40.54 acres for a proposed four-lot subdivision, including a truck wash facility, near the new Gore Hill water tower got initial approval during the Aug. 25 city planning board meeting.

The board also voted to recommend approval for annexation of 2.1 acres along Stuckey Road for the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana. The Tribe owns the property and uses an event center on the land.

City considering annexation for Little Shell Tribe property

Turbo Transportation Group, a company headquartered in Great Falls, is requesting annexation of the undeveloped land into the city and the first phase includes development of Lot 1 as a truck wash facility.

Brett Doney of the Great Falls Development Authority said economically, logistics is a major growth opportunity for Great Falls.

“This is more important than you may think at first blush,” Doney said. “This would fill a niche that would help grow our competitiveness.”

Annexation approved for Love’s truck stop near airport

The annexation, zoning and preliminary plat that were recommended for approval by the planning board on Aug. 25 will next go to the City Commission for final consideration in September.

The company owns the property and future phases are expected to include development of a truck repair facility and offices for the company on Lot 2; a 180-unit mini-storage facility on Lot 3 and future residential development on Lot 4.

Residential development will require a subsequent subdivision of Lot 4 and that request would also go before the planning board and City Commission.

Several area property owners attended the meeting or submitted written comment expressing concern about traffic in their residential area of Bel-View Pasisade, which is directly to the east.

(A map of the property area is at the bottom of the story)

As part of the annexation request, the adjacent right-of-way of Jaspar Road would also be annexed into the city.

City staff send notice to neighbors within 150 feet of the property notifying them of the proposed action.

Lots 1-3 of the property are proposed for C-3 Highway Commercial zoning, which allows for the truck wash, as well as the planned future development of a truck repair center and the mini-storage facility would be allowed in the zoning district with a conditional use permit.

“Designation of C-3 Highway Commercial district zoning for Lots 1-3 will allow for the use of underdeveloped land near the interstate to capitalize on commercial activities related to interstate travel,” according to the staff report. “This zoning designation will support the economic and physical goals of the city’s Growth Policy, including expanding the city’s existing economic base and supporting the expansion of existing businesses that bolster employment within the city.”

Lot 4 is proposed as R-2 single family medium density zoning. City staff said that’s the appropriate zoning since it’s the same zoning existing on the adjoining parcel to the east and north sides.

The developer is planning residential lots in the future, but Spencer Woith, a representative for the project, said development of that lot is a ways out and for the time being, no road connections are planned to the exiting Bel-View Palisade neighborhood from the first phase truck wash.

Staff has identified concerns regarding future proposed public street configuration, as well as stormwater quantity and quality control and told the planning board that the future subdivision be “closely reviewed for potential street connectivity and other impacts to the existing Bel-View Paisade neighborhood,” according to the staff report.

Under the annexation agreement as proposed, the developer will be required to construct 29th Street Southwest from 38th Avenue Southwest to the proposed Poplar Drive extension, as well as install sidewalk along the west side of 29th Street in that section. Adjoining property owners will be responsible for maintenance of the sidewalk, boulevard landscaping and trees after construction.

The developer will also be required to extend an 8-inch public water main through the right of way from the existing main on 29th Street Southwest to the east boundary of Lot 1, including the addition of fire hydrants. A public sanitary sewer line already runs across the entire 40-acre property, according to the city staff report.

Future improvements will be required as Lots 2-4 develop.

The proposed truck wash facility is expected to service 34 trucks daily and employ two people, according to the developer’s representatives. Doubling that number to account for arriving and leaving, adding an additional 10 percent for delivery trips and variations in usage, the estimate is 80 trips per day.