WPR News
8:13 pm
Thu June 30, 2011

Jackson Hole growth plan approved

Jackson, WY – Teton County Commissioners and Jackson Town Councilors unanimously approved a new vision for managing future growth in Jackson Hole. Officials say existing development and property rights could allow development in the county to double in the future. Given that, the vision and values document calls for preserving wildlife and scenery by creating incentives to direct such growth to already developed areas. Architectural designer Richard Reese says he thinks there's broad support for that idea.
"People really would not like to see a housing development where the osprey nest is by the ponds. That would really be a shattering event for our community. So if we can protect those spaces but allow growth and development to occur at the same time, I make money when the shovels are turning and the hammers are banging, so I really should support development, but at the same time I support it in what I think is a responsible way."
But some critics of the plan say it will do more to monitor growth than to actually manage it and had asked for a more specific cap on growth. Elected officials responded by saying that the next step will be to map out, in detail, where future development could go. Workshops on that issue will begin in September.