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0 <br />-Dune a ruwer LHt-es <br />I Help to Beautify More: __ <br />Housing Developments <br />~:~~~~&[.c~ni~u:s Cut Cost: <br />Though Gophers, Gardene~s, <br />Now and Then Cut the Lines . <br />By MITCHELL GORDON 1 <br />Stall Reporter ot THE WALL STREET JOURNAL I <br />LOS ANGELES-Visitors to a growing num·j <br />ber of housing developments around the coun· <br />try might think they had wandered back into I <br />the gaslight era. Look as they may, they'll! <br />i find no telephone poles or electric power lines. <br />· But the lines are there-underground. Utili· <br />ties have cut sharply the cost of running them <br />beneath the earth to homes, rather than string· <br />ing them overhead. And builders are hasten· <br />ing to order the sub-surface lines, to improve <br />the view from the picture window. <br />The move is particularly marked in areas <br />i where "the trend toward outdoor living is <br />helping to heighten awareness of the land and <br />airscape around homes," as Charles L. Beaty, <br />Jr., head of Dallas Power & Light Co.'s un· <br />derground engineering division, puts it. Thus, <br />Southern California Edison Co. hooked some <br />23,000 homes to buried power lines last year, <br />against 4,800 in 1963 and only 200 in 1954. <br />San Diego Gas & Electric. Co. figures near· <br />ly half the developments wired into its lines <br />last year had underground cables, against only <br />2% as recently as 1960. Across the continent <br />in Miami, Florida Power & Light Co. says <br />it is running underground lines to homes <br />priced as low as $14,000; two years ago it <br />extended them only to houses in the $30,000 <br />and up class. <br />Chicago Too <br />But the trend is also catching on in the <br />r. now-frozen North. "At the rate we're going, <br />• we probably won't be installing overhead util· <br />· ity lines anywhere in our system five years <br />from now, and the rest of the country won't <br />be far behind," says William E. Nelson, senior <br />distribution engineer of Commonwealth Edison <br />Co. in Chicago. <br />I Builders generally still pay, and add to <br />house prices, the extra cost of buying cables <br />(utilities usually absorb, and add to power <br />rates, the cost of stringing overhead lines). <br />But "undergrounding" costs have been cut <br />1 sharply by development of polyethylene-insu· <br />lated cable which can be fed directly into the <br />ground; this eliminates the laying of. expensive <br />copper or other metal conduit to encase the <br />heavy )~~d:covered .. cables. used .-p~evinu~l:;., <br />New: trenching. ,machines and other ... _:zp.ethodf:i <br />have helped,too. ·· · · .,; .. , ·~:., i <br />TOWN CENTER PLAN <br />, PROPOSED MON~_s .. AGO <br />( Publication I~ ~7-d!tans of a <br />Paradise Valley Town Center this <br />week recalled sim1lar proposals <br />made 16 months ago by Emmett <br />V. Graham. Mr. Graham sug- <br />gested use of a 10-acre site which <br />he owns on the southeast corner <br />of Lincoln Drive and Tatum Bou- <br />levard, one of two areas recom- <br />mended by the county planning <br />group. <br />·- <br />Mr. Graham, charter member <br />and first secretary-treasurer of <br />Paradise Valley Improvement As- <br />sociation, forerunner of the Town <br />Council, offered to let the Town <br />design its own center, one that <br />would be "compatible with the <br />community."' At that time Valley <br />National Bank was interested in <br />developing a branch at the pro- <br />posed site. Mr. Graham was · <br />..... ! 'Ten years ago-we were charging-close · t~ <br />$1,000 a lot for undergrounding," says R. Car· <br />ter Blankenburg, an official of Southern Cali· <br />fornia Edison. "Now it averages $140 or less." <br />And some electric utilities waive all, or <br />nearly all, cable-burying charges for builders <br />' putting up "all-electric" homes. Portland Gen· <br />eral Electric Co. in Oregon absorbs under- <br />i grounding costs up to $250 for all-electric <br />homes. But if the builder puts in a gas range <br />and oven be pays the full cost, which averages <br />$160 a bouse. <br />Builders generally find the now relatively <br />cheap buried cables an important selling "ex· <br />tra" in today's hotly competitive housing mar- <br />ket. Not many mention the lack of unsightly <br />overhead power lines in newspaper ads, but <br />' such firms as R. A. Watt Construction Co. <br />stress it in placards at the development site , <br />and brochures handed out to potential buyers. I <br />Few buyers realize how much the lack of visi- <br />ble power lines adds to the scenery u~tll they <br />get to the site, says Ray A. Watt, president. <br />Dollars-and-Cents Beauty <br />In some cases, builders claim, this esthetic <br />appeal can be translated directly into cash <br />terms. Leo D. Tandus, proprietor of Ocean <br />Avenue Realty Co. in scenic Carmel, Calif., <br />says buried cables make "view" lots starting <br />at $10 000 In his area "worth at least $2,000 <br />! more"' than they would be if the scenery in- <br />ll eluded a tangle of above-ground power lines. <br />Underground lines have other attractions, <br />too. They don't break during storms. or:hey <br />. don't put poles in the way of tipsy motonsts, <br />! or lines in the way of low-flying planes, and <br />· they can't fall on the ~ead of a _p_edestrlan <br />coming home in a blizzard. Utilities are <br />: spared the cost of trimming trees to keep <br />them from damaging overhead lines-a cost <br />which runs "hundreds of thousands of dollars" <br />a year for Commonwealth Edison. (The utilit) <br />also spends more than $1 million a year r( <br />pairing storm damage to overhead lines.) <br />I <br />But the burled cables also have disadva1 <br />tages. They're sometimes damaged by wate>· <br />. seepage, particularly in areas where salt is <br />used to melt snow, and by gnawing <br />gophers. It's not unknown for a home owner <br />who gets overly enthusiastic about gardening <br />to cut an underground line-which generally <br />runs three feet deep-while digging a hole to <br />plant a tree. <br />More important, says a Florida. utility ex· <br />ecutive, installers of sewers, storm drains and i water mains, and sometimes of gas lines or <br />: even driveways, cut underground cables as <br />many as seven times while working on a single <br />lot costing his utility as much as $100 per ho~se In extra materials alone. Utilities cus- <br />tomarily provide other contractors with maps i <br />of their buried lines, he says, but workers i rarely pay any_ atten.tion to _them, and con- <br />':l~actors hardly e-.. e~· mal{e good the · damage <br />they cause, <br />·-~roblem~s · lJrl-res-olvecf /~-;~~6 ~ <br />By PV Town Study <br />Solution of some Town planning <br />problems are not included in the <br />proposals made for Paradise <br />' Valley by the County. <br />One of these is the stand to be <br />taken on proposals forhighdensity <br />zoning likely to be made!Jy owners <br />of property in abutting areas <br />located in the County. A recent <br />case was the zoning of Camelback <br />Inn property. In this the Town <br />officially merely passed formal <br />resolutions of protest from its <br />Planning and Zoning Commission <br />and its Council. Active protests <br />were left to individuals and were <br />not supported by the Town. <br />Cluster Zoning <br />Another problem is possible ap- <br />plications within the Town for <br />"cluster zoning." This is <br />generally attractive on sites of 40 <br />acres or more and permits resi- <br />dential buildings to be close to- <br />gether without exceeding the <br />number of streets required in a <br />new subdivision; reduces the cost <br />of utilities, particularly where they <br />must be underground; and recog- <br />nizes that many people like to live <br />closer together than a one-house- <br />to-the-acre restriction permits. <br />In exchange for this zoning the <br />developer maintains open space as <br />a playground or park. Such zoning <br />has already been tentatively pro- <br />posed for a 40-acre tract on <br />Lincoln Drive near Mockingbird <br />Lane. Many planning authorities <br />agree that this is a beneficial <br />forward step in planning. Scotts- <br />dale has such a provision and <br />Phoenix is now considering one. <br />The Racquet Club <br />Third problem is The Racquet <br />Club, which if not sold will be <br />boarded up this spring according <br />to its owners, the receivers of <br />the Arizona Savings and Loan As- <br />sociation. While this outstanding <br />site is one for which the Town <br />has no direct responsibility, it <br />should not be ignored in a com- <br />prehensive plan. Ultimately the <br />Town will need to recognize the <br />need for some zoning relief which <br />will make this property useful and <br />a credit to the community. <br />Another area for constructive <br />action is the strip of Paradise <br />Valley which crosses Scottsdale <br />Road south of the 200 acres along <br />Scottsdale Road that has been <br />recently zoned by Scottsdale for <br />resorts. It is not believed that <br />Paradise Valley can insist (by <br />taking no action) that this area <br />be used for private residences <br />of an acre or more each, ln.view <br />of surrounding land use. <br />These are only indicative of <br />the variety of decisions involved <br />in the maturation of a Town plan <br />which all professional planners <br />recognize as providing no more <br />than firm guidelines for develop- <br />ment in which Individual decisions <br />must continually test the essential <br />flexibility of the plan. <br />PARADISE VALLEY PLAN .. , <br />_ Continued from page 2 <br />inner court, screened by planting <br />from the outside so that the nature <br />of the Center would not intrude on <br />the residential character of the <br />community. Utility and delivery <br />service and refuse collection would <br />be made from the outside, the plan <br />provides, eliminating the necessity <br />for truck traffic Within the Center. <br />Territorial or Spanish architec- <br />tural style is proposed. <br />Parking is recommended at a <br />ratio of two square feet for each <br />one of building. <br />The following commercial build- <br />ing space is proposed: <br />also one of the developers, _with <br />Lloyd Kiva, of Fifth Avenue in <br />Scottsdale. <br />GRAHAM PLAN .. interested in such a center, in- <br />cluding three-fourths of the people <br />in Clearwater Hills. An artist's <br />sketch of his proposal was based <br />on a Spanish-California Mission <br />de n <br />Grocery Store <br />Drug Store <br />Liquor Store <br />Barber Shop <br />Beauty Shop <br />Branch Bank <br />24,000 <br />11,000 <br />3,750 <br />860 <br />875 <br />4,500 <br />Corner Appropriate <br />Mr. Graham then said that the <br />corner was particularly appro-. <br />priate because "no one wants a <br />residence at an intersection with <br />a four-way traffic light." He <br />pointed out that a convenience <br />shopping area and civic center <br />need not be incompatible with the <br />surrounding area. "It is simply <br />a matter of economics," he said. <br />1 "Most shopping centers are built <br />on a basis of stark economy, to <br />Continued on page 23 <br />Continued from page 20 <br />produce the maximum rent.able <br />space at the lowest cost per square <br />foot. Increasing the rental to <br />insure a beauty harmonious with <br />the community means dealing with <br />merchants who have quality <br />products ~enerally salable only <br />in a pleasing atmosphere." <br />He said then that hundreds of <br />people in Paradise Vapey were <br />-~ <br />His proposal was referred to <br />the Town Planning and Zoning <br />Commission but never came before <br />~ouncil for formal action. <br />Distrust yourself, and sleep <br />before you fight. 'Tis not too late <br />tomorrow to be brave. <br />-John Armstrong <br />7 <br />- <br />44,985 sq. ft. <br />Municipal and other services in- <br />volve: <br />City Administration <br />Police Department <br />Fire Department <br />Equipment Storage <br />Library <br />Justice of the Peace <br />Post Office <br />Total 76,513 <br />7,492 <br />1,323 <br />3,967 <br />3,335 <br />8,625 <br />1,668 <br />5,118 <br />31,528 sq. ft. <br />with parking 229,579 sq. ft. <br />The Arizonian <br />~-------, <br />I I <br />I I <br />I I <br />I ..--I I ....___... I <br />I I <br />I I L_ _____ j <br />January 7, ]9, <br />,-----------_, <br />I I <br />I I <br />I : <br />I ~ I <br />I I <br />I I <br />I I L _________ J <br />~--------1 <br />I . : <br />II Cl I I I I <br />I I <br />I 1 L_ ______ J <br />Civic Center C o----""m~-p::.~:>.• -;::1 e::.2:.· x:.:.c:.· ·~,:::·o=··:2Crz_P=-a~r~a~d~i2s.:2:..e~V~a~l~l e2 yz__1 <br />Officials of Paradise Valley are studying proposals for the <br />Town's devel~pment set forth in broad outline by the Maricopa <br />County Planmng and Zoning Commission. One proposal ad- <br />vanced for consideration and study is a Town complex which <br />would provide convenient shopping facilities as well as an <br />area for Town services. Mayor Jack B. Huntress has stressed <br />that all suggestions are tentative and should be considered as <br />"springboar?s for discussion. " Of the several proposals the <br />one most f1kely to prompt discussion is the proposal for a <br />Town Civic Center complex. <br />The Maricopa County study for Paradise Valley, in addition to recom- <br />mending bridle paths, school sites and the preservation of open space <br />for an eventual community of 14,000, recommends consideration of a <br />Town Center which will include shops. <br />Two locations are proposed: the vicinity of Lincoln Drive and Tatum <br />Boulevard and the vicinity of Lin- <br />coln Drive and Invergordon Road. <br />This would place the Center in the <br />southernmost quarter of the Town, <br />with most of the growth expected <br />to the north. <br />"Because existing shopping fa- <br />cilities are located near the Town <br />boundaries," the report says, "ap- <br />proximately 10,000 persons are <br />considered residing in the future <br />within the logical trade area of <br />certain commercial uses • " <br />Predicted population of the Town <br />is 14,000 in 1980. <br />The proposal for a County study <br />was approved by Paradise Valley <br />Town Council in August 1963. At <br />that time $5,800 was authorized: <br />$2,500 for the general plan; $1,500 <br />for a traffic and road study; and <br />$1,800 for a water and sewage <br />study. It was then expected that <br />all three studies would be com- <br />pleted in six months. No firm <br />date has yet been set for the com- <br />pletion of the road and traffic study <br />or the water and sewage proposals. <br />Final adoption of a comprehensive <br />Town plan is believed closely <br />linked to completion of street <br />recommendations. <br />Street Plan Problems <br />A problem seems certain to <br />rise over adoption of a street plan, <br />if and when one is submitted for <br />study. The location and character <br />of proposed streets are expected <br />to cause lively discussion, as well <br />as the cost of paying for certain <br />of them. Such controversy may <br />be heightened by continuing delay. <br />For example, Lincoln Drive is <br />designated by Paradise Valley and <br />on County maps as being a main <br />arterial, extending, as it does, into <br />a through route to the west. How- <br />ever, Scottsdale is encouraging the <br />use of MacDonald Drive as an <br />arterial wlth plans to channel much <br />of its traffic to the new Saguaro <br />High School over MacDonald, even <br />to widening it where it passes over <br />the Arizona Canal. There is no <br />automobile bridge over the canal . <br />------------ <br />on Lincoln Drive. To build one <br />would cost from $30,000to $50,000, <br />engineers say. <br />To improve a street such as <br />MacDonald with 28 feet of asphalt, <br />curb and gutter, according to sec- <br />tion line standards, costs about <br />$25,000 a half-mile. <br />At its meeting January 14, the <br />Town Council is scheduled to dis- <br />cuss the suggestions advanced by <br />the County and to arrange means <br />of thoroughly sound!ng out resi- <br />dents' reaction. Mayor Huntress <br />has several times said that no <br />final action will be taken until <br />proposals for modification have <br />been thoroughly considered. <br />Commercial Uses <br />Possible commercial uses men- <br />tioned are: grocery store, drug <br />store, barber shop, beauty shop, <br />branch bank and gourmet shop. <br />"Gourmet shop" is a euphemism <br />for liquor store. Municipal ser- <br />vices proposed are a town hall, <br />post office, police and fire de- <br />partment and possibly a library. <br />The commercial facilities could <br />be immediately supported, the <br />report concluded, with the excep- <br />tion of a drug store which could <br />be supported within the near future. <br />However, no detailed market <br />analysis was made and the com- <br />mission recommended such a <br />study, along with one which would <br />analyze needs for public building <br />space, before detailed plans are <br />made. <br />Estimated minimum land re- <br />quirements are 6.6 acres; rounded <br />off to a recommended 10-acre <br />site which would provide expansion <br />of landscaping and facilities. <br />The commission proposes all <br />buildings face on a landscaped <br />Continued on page 20