Without taking formal action, aldermen agreed that property owner Barbara Alt can divide 19.6 acres of farmland on Industrial Drive between herself and her brother-in-law Henry Alt and postpone installation of roads, sidewalks, gutters and stormwater lines until such time as the property is developed.
At the Feb. 19 board meeting, aldermen discussed Alt’s application for a boundary adjustment plat dividing the 19.6 acres that her late husband Leroy and his brother Henry bought jointly in 1965 before either was married. Both owners added their wives to the deed after marriage.
The land became part of the Alt farm, which has been farmed by three generations for more than 100 years. Henry’s son Paul, a fourth generation member of the family, now farms the land with his father.
The Pacific Planning and Zoning Commission recommended approval of Alt’s boundary adjustment plat, which created two lots, an 8-acre lot that Barbara Alt would own and a 11.6-acre lot that Henry and Charlene Alt would own.
In the same discussion, aldermen agreed that the city would accept from Alt a 5-foot flag strip, also known as a spite strip, that runs along the 19.6 acres.
Alt said she did not want the strip, which contains utility lines, but purchased it recently so she could build an access road across her 8-acre lot to reach a 40-acre parcel that she and her heirs own, which is now landlocked.
Part of the boundary adjustment petition was approval of a 50-foot road easement across her divided lot. A second easement across a corner of Henry Alt’s farm also would be needed to reach the 40 acres.
Some aldermen wanted the 50-foot road easement dedicated as a public road easement, but Alt said she did not want it open for the public to drive across her land, which Henry and Paul Alt will continue to farm. She requested a private easement.
Some aldermen opposed the idea of a private road, even on a farm, because of how access would be affected if the land is developed for industrial at some time in the future.
Aldermen could not reach an agreement on how the 50-foot road easement would be dedicated and asked the petitioner and staff to discuss it and bring it back at the next meeting, but Mayor Herb Adams said the request should be forwarded on.
Adams said an ordinance containing the elements agreed on should be drawn up. The petitioner and staff can meet before the next meeting and come up with a solution for the road easement that satisfies the petitioner and still meets land use regulations, he said.