Canadian County rural water district annex approved

Brothers plan to build 13 houses on 160-acre Richland-area property

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Joseph Weaver

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

A proposal has been approved to expand a rural water district’s footprint northwest of Yukon.

Canadian County Commissioners on Oct. 18 voted 3-0 to approve a petition to annex unincorporated land into the Green Valley Rural Water, Sewer and Solid Waste Management District. The action came at the end of a 29-minute public hearing.

Attorney Joseph Weaver filed the petition as representative of the water district.

Craig Brothers Property Development approached Green Valley representatives to annex the southeast quarter of Section 14 Township 13 Range 6 West in the Richland community into their water district.

“That’s unincorporated territory,” Weaver said. “The board of directors for the water district has approved the annexation. They’ve got plenty of water.”

Chad and Jason Craig, who bought the 160-acre property with another brother, explained their plan to build 13 houses on five- and 10-acre tracts.

“We’re not ‘big-time’ developers,” Chad Craig told county commissioners and neighboring property owners. “We’re going to be building some nice houses for ourselves and selling the other (tracts) for nice houses.

“We’re going to keep an 80-acre piece in the back as family hunting property.”

Mary Shine Culver, who owns a farm east of Richland Road, told county commissioners she’s “not worried about the development” – only she does not want access to her property “taken away”.

District 1 Canadian County Commissioner Marc Hader

“Nothing will be done to hinder access to your property,” District 1 County Commissioner Marc Hader replied.

Hader shared the unique history of this site, just west of Oklahoma City limits.

Four parcels of land, 33 feet wide, were deeded to Canadian County in the 1920s after a bridge failed on what is now Richland Road between Memorial Road and 122nd Street.

“It was just a transaction for $200 to $300,” Hader shared. “It didn’t have any statements about what the purpose was for. It’s a unique anomaly, certainly in our county if not all across the state.”

Culver added, “It was deeded to the county in the ‘horse-and-buggy’ days. So that’s why it’s only 33 feet.”

The developers want to use this for access to the parcels “that they’d like to get water to,” Commissioner Hader explained.

The Craig brothers have no current plans to widen the drive – except along their section of land. They do plan to doze the entire west side of their property to raise the roadbed six to eight feet and install a bar ditch for drainage.

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WATER PRESSURE

Neighboring property owner Cliff Lawson, a member of the Richland Volunteer Fire Department, noted the challenge of getting fire trucks into that area.

Lawson wondered whether the water district plans to erect a new tower to provide sufficient water pressure.

“We can’t even hardly run fire trucks off of those (water) lines,” he noted.

Attorney Weaver explained no “engineering” had been done yet on the proposed development. The first step was getting the property annexed into the water district.

“They (Craig brothers) are the ones that bought the property, and the water district says, ‘we’ve got enough water’,” Weaver said. “It’s going to be a problem for those guys if they don’t have pressure.”

Richland Fire supports the new development.

“You are in our tax base of the service area,” Lawson told the Craigs. “The more houses you put there, the more money for us – which we need. We definitely need to consider the water pressure issue.”

The Craig brothers have reviewed Green Valley’s water line maps.

“There’s a main six-inch water line that they said (would provide) ample pressure and flow,” Chad Craig said. “If something comes up in the engineering process that says ‘no, this isn’t going to work’, we’re going to have to put a water tower (at our expense).”

Two residents discussed concerns about housing development in unincorporated areas of Canadian County during the Oct. 18th public hearing. See related story in upcoming print and online editions of The Yukon Progress.