By Linda Bentley | september 23, 2015

Cahava at Morning Star previews new development plans

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CAVE CREEK – Last Tuesday Mark Stapp, president of Cahava Springs Development Corp. and Morning Star Road Properties, Inc., held a meeting for neighboring property owners to present preliminary plans for parcels Morning Star Road Properties owns along Morning Star Road, as well as a 20 acre parcel south of Cahava Ranch Road.

Amid ongoing concerns about creating a road connection with the Cahava Springs property, in a letter inviting the neighboring property owners to the meeting, Stapp, once again, assured them there are no plans to connect the two properties.

Mark Stapp

Stapp updated citizens about the improvement district for the Cahava Springs project and said the district has been formed and the board held its first meeting.

He said an appraiser and an engineer have been hired and stated they need a 3:1 ratio in value in order to sell bonds, whereas if they want to sell $15 million in bonds, the property would need to appraise for $45 million.

He again reiterated there are no plans to build a road or provide access from Cahava Springs to the property on the east side of the creek.

Terry Smith, a west side resident, asked, “When are we going to get water?”

Stapp said construction should start around the end of October and he expected the water line to be ready by January.

Stapp said each of the Morning Star parcels has its own access easement except for the southern parcel, which he said was landlocked.

Although the plans are preliminary, Stapp said they plan to submit three applications to the town and stated all conform to the existing ordinances for DR-190 zoning and they won’t be asking for anything.

He said “We need to perfect the rights in our Rubicon easement.”

Showing a map of the parcels, Stapp said they are proposing a five-lot subdivision for the parcel west of 48th Street and a six-lot subdivision for the property on the east side of 48th street.

He said the 20-acre parcel to the south was uncertain and they needed to get an easement but they plan to do a lot split into two or three parcels.

Stapp said they would be submitting applications for two subdivisions and one lot split.

However, he said it was not engineered yet and was only what they have planned.

Going back to the road connection issue, Stapp explained, while he will provide whatever improvements the town requires, the town cannot make anyone buy right-of-way and, due to the annexation agreement, which is in effect until 2022, the town can’t force him to make improvements the town can’t approve.

Stapp said, looking at the longer perspective and bigger picture, it does make sense to have an additional legal access for when the creek can’t be crossed, but acknowledged people get upset over the idea.

He said, “I’m not going to be the one to connect the dots.”

Stapp pointed out the Cahava Springs property has even placed a one-foot, non-vehicular easement along its boundary, which precludes a road being built across that easement.

Everett Bell, an attendee, stated that could be changed by a vote of council, which Stapp agreed was a possibility.

Martha Arnold asked what sort of deed restrictions the subdivisions would have.

Stapp said they would address design considerations.

Kerry Smith asked where the water would come from and if it would be from wells.

Stapp said, “We don’t know yet,” but indicated crossing the creek is an issue if they were to hook into the municipal water system.

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