By Bonnie Davidson
The Valley County Commissioners have met with developers and others interested in a new development near the Park Grove area of Fort Peck. The project that started in 2006 has already broken ground and is well on the way to completion.
Jed Kirkland, who’s also a professional engineer, took the task on for his parents on 145 acres of land his parents owned. They decided to put a subdivision, called Kirkland Estates, in to find a better use for land that was in a way boxed in by other developments. The acreage will provide 91 residential lots and four commercial lots. One of those commercial lots is a proposed golf course, another lot would be a club house, leaving two open lots for businesses.
Utilities, roads and other basic improvements began on the property in 2010. A few lots have been sold but can’t be deeded out until the final plots are approved by they county. The Kirkland Estates may gain a few more residents as the housing crunch continues in the area.
As finalizing the plans are down to the last details, the county was looking to address some issues, such as adequate fire protection and locations for mail carriers. Kirkland explained that he had been working with the post office on the mail requirements, and a few adjustments could easily be made to solve the problem.
Rene Clampitt spoke to Kirkland about how fire protection would be addressed in the subdivision. Several options were discussed, like a dry hydrant, a pump in the nearby irrigation system and coverage from the Fort Peck Fire Department that was within five miles of the development. Without having a plan Kirkland would be required to store 2,500 gallons of water per residence, or more, which would bring a heavy maintenance cost to the subdivision.
Dan Carney explained to the commissioners that the development already had an agreement with the Fort Peck Fire Department. Kirkland explained that they would also be considered the first responders in case of a fire, or emergency.
County Attorney Nick Murnion asked about the requirements and if a dry hydrant would still be required and if so, how many. He advised that having some fire suppression would help with insurance rates as well as help the local fire departments. Clampitt explained that only one was required. Commissioner Dave Reinhardt said after going through previous minutes from the past, the development had agreed to have a dry hydrant and keep it maintained.
Another issue of concern the commissioners wanted addressed was how the golf course agreement was made, and if the homeowners association was set up in the proper way. Kirkland told commissioners that 25 percent of the lot sales would go toward the development of the golf course, once 50 percent of the lots were sold they had a five year limit to finish the golf course and get it operational. He said if the golf course wasn’t complete that the home owners would get a certain percentage back each year.
Kirkland also reassured the county that the homeowners association covet was written out well and based off of other similar developments. A majority vote would be 51 percent. He also directed commissioners and others interested in further details of the development to visit www.kirklandestates.com.