Developers withdraw request

Bennett, Engelken decide not to pursue plan

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— Kevin Bennett and partner Jim Engelken have formally withdrawn their request for annexation of a 16-acre property owned by Martha Cannon.

Bennett and Engelken decided in October not to purchase the property or pursue their original plan of a 28-lot, single-family home development on the site.

"After taking a close look at the overall market and the concerns of the neighbors, we decided to withdraw," Bennett said.

Bennett left a message on Town Manager Rob Straebel's voice mail two weeks ago, but the two have not discussed the reasons or the future of the idea.

"The property would have been appropriate for annexation," Straebel said. "It is within our urban growth boundaries and, in fact, is an enclave within the town of Hayden."

Though Straebel sounded positive about the future of the development listed as "Old Farm Village," many in Hayden greeted the proposal with open hostility.

Bennett and Engelken submitted no formal proposal and never finalized the purchase of Cannon's former dairy farm, but their informal presentation to the Hayden Planning Commission was standing-room only with residents concerned about the two irrigation ditches, the Shelton and Walker ditches, that cross the property.

"Certainly that night at the planning commission (meeting) played into our decision," Bennett said. "But in the end, we are not in the development business. We just wanted to build something that would be affordable and competitive housing."

Bennett and Engelken are not looking at other properties.

? To reach Autumn Phillips call 871-4210

or e-mail aphillips@steamboatpilot.com

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