Northern South Park

Board of County Commissioners Chairwoman Natalia D. Macker and Jackson Mayor Pete Muldoon listen to a joint information meeting at Town Hall.

The town and county seem to have come to agreement: They want some sort of neighborhood plan for northern South Park.

But last Monday, elected officials sparred over whether to plan the area jointly.

“We could make a motion and do a neighborhood plan tomorrow,” Commissioner Greg Epstein said, noting attorneys had advised commissioners they could move ahead without the town.

With the Gill family proposing a large, market-based development targeted at housing the local workforce in the area, Epstein is spurring the board to move swiftly.

“What we’re trying to do is bring the town along and say, ‘Do you want to be part of this joint planning effort?’” he said.

Most councilors answered in the affirmative.

“I think it would be very problematic on a lot of levels to have the county go ahead without the town involved on northern South Park,” Jackson Town Councilor Jonathan Schechter said.

The discussion came as the Town Council and Teton County Board of County Commissioners near the finish line on an update to the 2012 Teton County/Jackson Comprehensive Plan, which lays out a development vision for the community. Officials were supposed to review a draft update Monday before passing it to the planning commission for review.

Ultimately, they punted the can down the road with the conversation Monday showing that can is full of all kinds of planning-related worms.

Planning staff will take another crack at the comp plan update, this time with a fine-tooth comb for the language about northern South Park.

One of the proposed changes would designate the area as an appropriate one for development — a change from the 2012 plan.

Read more about the debate in this week's News&Guide.

Contact Billy Arnold at 732-7063 or barnold@jhnewsandguide.com.

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