This Is The Last Chance For Rancho Del Sol

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Editor:

I am writing regarding the zoning of Rancho Del Sol, formerly known as Fox Farms at the end of Granite Dells Road. At the present time, The Rim Club is in negotiations on the purchase of this property. Their intent is to develop the 80 acres into luxury estates, including an equestrian facility.

Currently, the property is a privately owned boarding stable for residents and visitors of Payson. The facility offers pasture, stalls, arenas, and trails for riding, campsites and rented rooms for those who wish to stay. Rancho Del Sol is in the early stages of their future plans for the ranch with intent to benefit everyone. As one of the few boarding stables left in Payson, its services are highly sought after. As horse property in the community it is becoming a rare commodity. The managers have also taken part in helping the High School Rodeo Team and 4-H. They provide an area that allows participants to practice riding, and hopefully soon will have stock for the rough riders and ropers. Let's not forget the area is also used by all kinds of outdoor enthusiasts. Many locals hike, bike, paintball and ride horses or recreational vehicles. This may be impeded on if a gated community becomes present.

On July 11, Gila County is having a zoning hearing to determine the future of this unspoiled piece of land. The Rim Club hopes to be able to put up 48 houses and 5 to 6 cottages associated with their current gated facility. Who do you think will live in these million dollar homes? Who will benefit from their equestrian facility? Some may believe the development may bring in business, but honestly, where do you think these homeowners will do their shopping or buying? Most owners don't even live here year-round. It has become more of a weekend retreat.

As residents and horse lovers ourselves, I hate to see something so beautiful wasted. Wasted for money, wasted for a view, and wasted on only those rich enough to afford it.

There is one way we can take a stand. For those of you who wish to help preserve the land, please e-mail Gila County and let them know how you feel at Bvalenzu@Co.gila.az.us or/and RGould@Co.gila.az.us

These e-mails must be in by July 11. Each will be read before the hearing and the final vote. This is the last chance for Rancho Del Sol -- the ranch anyone can enjoy no matter what their social or financial status.

Eli and Allison Pfoutz, Payson

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