The McPherson County Planning Board dealt a setback to plans by E. Tom Pyle Jr. to construct a trailer park on property he owns northwest of Kansas and Interstate 135, during the board’s regular monthly meeting Monday.
Pyle informed the board of his desire to construct a trailer park with anywhere from 48 to 120 slots, that could conceivably become part of a larger development in the area in the next five to 10 years.
However, board members noted that the property would have to be connected to city water and utilities, and the property resided on the city’s floodplain. Many board members asked Pyle why he simply didn’t ask the city to annex it.
Pyle said he had talked, and had received tentative approval from, city commissioners - also mentioning his vision was a self-sustaining community with its own power and sewer systems.
That proposition was met with some skepticism by the board, however. McPherson Zoning Administrator Tom Stinemetze informed the board that the city usually did not approve utility sales outside its city limits, and that Pyle, if unable to get approval from several state agencies, including the Kansas Department of Agriculture and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, would have no alternative but to purchase utility service from the city.
Eventually, board member Frances Stucky asked Pyle, who was also adamant about the board not platting the property in question, how approval would benefit him as a tax break. Pyle admitted that it would be.
After debate on the scope and nature of the product, the board voted unanimously to deny approval for the trailer park.
Pyle still has the option of asking the city to annex the property, and proceed with the city planning and zoning commission.