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North Canyon Homes tentative map approved for Pahrump

The Pahrump Valley’s newest subdivision is one step closer to reality following unanimous approval by the Nye County Commission of a tentative subdivision map for the North Canyon Homes Subdivision.

Going before the board during its Tuesday, Sept. 21 meeting, the tentative map outlines 30 homes in total on approximately 16 acres of land located on the north end of Pahrump. “The developer is proposing a single-family residential subdivision consisting of 30 lots. The property is currently zoned VR-8 (8,000-square-foot minimum lot size). Each proposed lot is 20,000 square feet in size and complies with the development agreement for this project,” information contained within the agenda item details. “Developer proposes to provide all lots with connection to Desert Utilities Inc. sewer and water system.”

The North Canyon Homes project may not be one many in the valley are familiar with but it is certainly no new concept, as developer Ken Murphy, who is a longtime builder in the valley, has been eyeing this project for many years.

Originally proposed prior to the 2008 recession, Murphy’s hopes of building the subdivision were dashed when the housing market crashed and the economy took a sharp downturn as a result of the recession, forcing him to put the project on the back burner.

In 2020, however, with the economy back on the right track and the housing market stabilized, he felt it was the right time to revive the project and he brought his proposal to the commission on April 21, 2020.

As presented at that meeting, the development agreement Murphy was aiming to have approved called for 67 homes on 16 acres, but this was something commissioners were none too pleased with, as all concurred that with the local water struggles, larger lots are paramount for any new developments going into the valley.

Rather than balking at the suggestion of fewer homes on the same amount of space, Murphy proved amenable to altering his plans and returned to the commission three months later with an adjusted development agreement outlining less than half of the homes initially sought, which dropped the housing density from roughly five homes per acre to just two homes per acre. That proposal was something a majority of the board was quite happy to see and the development agreement met with a 4-1 approval, with commissioner Debra Strickland the sole voice against.

With more than a year having passed since his development agreement was given the thumbs-up, Murphy was now ready to present the commission with a tentative map for the North Canyon Homes Subdivision, which is a key step in the development process.

Ken Murphy said his plans are to construct a total of 30 custom-built homes on half-acre sized lots within a gated community. The subdivision is to be located just west of Simkins Park at 290, 330, 370 and 410 E. Simkins Road.

When the item was opened for discussion on Sept. 21, commissioner Frank Carbone kicked off the conversation by noting that he was not a member of the commission when the development agreement was approved in 2020 but he well remembers the discussion, as he attended the April 2020 meeting as a member of the audience. He noted that he was glad to see that Murphy had returned with a proposal more to the board’s liking and he was ready to make a motion for approval.

Before the motion was made, commissioner Donna Cox chimed in as well, remarking, “I worked with Mr. Murphy and he was very easy to work with.” She highlighted his willingness to comply with the commission’s desire to see lots of a larger size, stating, “The 20,000 square foot lots are close to a half acre each, give or take a road, so I just wanted to make a comment about how nice it was to work with you and I’d like to thank you for not giving us a bad time over that. And I hope they sell well.”

Carbone then made the motion to approve the tentative subdivision map, with a second from commissioner Bruce Jabbour. That motion passed with all in favor.

The North Canyon Homes Subdivision Development Agreement is for a term of five years from its approval date of July 21, 2020. Murphy will have until July 2025 to build out the subdivision unless he is approved for an extension in the future.

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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