Walmart appeal denied


The glare from Walmart’s parking lot lights is one step closer to being fixed after the Pagosa Springs Board of Adjustments voted Tuesday night to deny Walmart’s appeal and uphold the town planner’s determination that the lights are out of compliance with the town’s Land Use and Development Code (LUDC).

This week’s meeting was a continuation of the public hearing held on June 30, where Joseph Lubinski, an attorney from Ballard Spahr LLP, and Tasha Bolivar, the site development coordinator from the architecture firm Galloway, were on hand to contest a final ruling by Town Planner James Dickhoff.

That earlier meeting was structured more like a trial, with each side given a specific amount of time to present its case, and then additional periods of time to refute each other’s statements.

Dickhoff argued that the parking lot lighting at Walmart didn’t comply with the town’s LUDC for two reasons.


First, most of the lights around the perimeter of the property were in compliance, but there were two that were installed incorrectly. According to the code, and Walmart’s own lighting plan, zero foot-candles of illumination should hit the ground anywhere beyond Walmart’s property line. However, when Dickhoff used a light meter to measure it, those two lights were shining in the wrong direction and light was trespassing onto the adjacent properties.

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