The City Council approved annexation of 800 acres east of Bountiful Boulevard Wednesday - providing the real estate agency requesting the annexation donates 640 of the acres to the city.
A representative for Leon Brown Estate said the agency plans to build 60 houses on the 160 acres allotted for development.The City Council requested Wednesday that the remaining 640 acres not be used for future development and that the acreage be preserved for watershed areas, potential sources of water for the city to "ensure our water quality for years to come."
A representative of Leon Brown Estate asked that the agency have "partial use of the 640 acres," but the request was officially denied.
Last July, Bountiful residents were concerned about the annexation and fought to keep all 800 acres free from development because it would have adverse effects on their local water supply. But in the City Council meeting Wednesday, citizens did not voice concerns over the city's decision to approve the annexation.
"I'm still concerned about the future of our city's watershed," Councilwoman Renee Coon said. "There's a major water hazard that results when you build high up on a mountain, and I just want to make sure our water resources remain intact."
Many council members agreed with Coon's concerns, asking a representative of Leon Brown Estate to make it a condition of the property deed that if, at a future date, the city used any of the 640 acres, the property would have to be returned to Leon Brown Estate.
"I just want to ensure that no one has use of those acres - even the city - no one other than the growth and vegetation it takes to keep our watershed area pure," Councilman Harold Shafter said. "This would make it so neither the city or your agency affects the environmental balance of the area."
Last June, Leon Brown Estate was initially turned down when it petitioned for the annexation. As a result the agency agreed to donate the upper 640 acres to the city. City officials accepted the agency's offer because it "was a way to control growth on the hillside," and buying the land with general-fund revenues would be a great expense for the city.
"The city first turned them down because of the environmental risks," Coon said last July. "They had to dangle that carrot of donating land to Bountiful before anyone would even listen to them."