A zoning change approved by the Maricopa County Board of Supervisor, 301 W. Jefferson St., makes way for a new senior living facility in Sun City West.
The board approved the Beth Emeth Congregation zoning change July 22. According to Scott Isham, chief of staff for Maricopa County Supervisor Clint Hickman, the facility will permit construction of senior citizen-oriented, multi-unit housing to serve and be consistent with the surrounding Sun City West community.
The zoning change allows for planning of the facility to begin according to the July 22 meeting agenda on what is now a mainly disused parking lot next to a synagogue.
The document agenda stated, “… the Beth Emeth Congregation, requests to change the zoning designation of parcel 503-65-011A (subject property) from its current Rural-43 designation to R-5 with no precise Plan of Development (POD). The intent is to provide for future development of senior housing (age-restricted to 55 years and older) on the subject property by a future property owner/developer.”
The parcel — about 1.3 acres of paved parking lot on the west side of the Beth Emeth property near the northwest corner of R.H. Johnson Boulevard and Grand Avenue — stands next to three religious facilities, including churches to the north and south and the aforementioned synagogue to the east. To the west are single-family homes.
Before winning a 7-0 approval from planning and zoning commissioners, the zoning request received 40 letters of opposition from area homeowners’ associations. But the addition of two agreed-upon stipulations led to the withdrawal of the HOA letters.
“Some of the restrictions directed by the Board of Supervisors include limiting building height to no more than 30 feet (so the height is consistent with the surrounding area), and requiring a minimum 40-foot setback from the northwest property line. Further, any outdoor lighting must be shielded and be directed downward to limit potential light dispersion onto adjacent properties,” Mr. Isham said. “Finally, if there are any signs on site, they cannot be illuminated.”
The approved zoning still requires the property owner to seek approval of a site plan for the project. According to Mr. Isham, the site plan will identify the specific details of the projects, including buildings, parking, landscaping and other aspects, and will need to obtain building and grading permits prior to construction.