Many residents in Rio Rancho share a concern for what may happen to Chamisa Hills Country Club and Golf Course. We understand that currently it is not a money-making enterprise and the owner would like to dispose of it.
It is unfortunate that the City of Rio Rancho intends to increase the cost of irrigation water by five times and then more in 2017. This will certainly affect the demise of the club. Did the city officials factor in the loss of any irrigation revenue if the club cannot afford to purchase it? If the club fails, what about the loss of tax revenue? What about the loss of employment for the club staff? Has economic development for the community been considered? We know that the facility has been a positive amenity for the city and the adjacent property owners. The owner realizes that it would be virtually impossible to rezone the property for traditional residential development because of resistance by the adjacent property owners.
I suggest a compromise be discussed between the city and club owner. Perhaps they could collaborate in hiring a professional design firm who would address a modified residential plan, which might include green belt areas near the lakes, which would be retained for irrigation, and these areas included in the city’s park system.
The residential lots would be designed low density, appealing to high end homes. This would be reviewed, modified if necessary, and pre-approved by the city’s Planning and Zoning Department. The club owner would then have a product qualified and appealing for sale to subdivision developers. The clubhouse could be an upscale restaurant for all to enjoy. This is a plan that property owners can support. Everyone would benefit.