City Council members were shocked and Mayor Richard Maxfield was relieved when developer John Hendrichsen withdrew his proposal to build Maple Mountain Golf Community.
Hendrichsen retreated during Tuesday's City Council meeting after City Attorney James Brady said it would be at least mid-March before a fiscal analysis on the project would be available. The analysis was to have been ordered by the city early this summer. The delay was the final blow to Hen-drich-sen's costly year-old battle."I'm tired of being lied to and of the inaccuracies that are being spread," Hendrichsen said. "I've gone overboard trying to work with the city."
But Maxfield says Hendrichsen didn't do nearly enough to inform him, the Planning Commission and the City Council about the project of more than 600 acres.
"We could never get John to come up with anything concrete," Maxfield said. "He'd just bring in drawings. I don't think he made a bona fide effort to annex."
On the contrary, Hendrichsen said. He has spent thousands of dollars on blueprints, studies, analyses and documentation on critical environmental and water issues and numerous other concerns about the property. He presented his development plans in more than one public meeting and several times to the Planning Commission over the past year.
Hendrichsen says that each time he went to the commission it would ask him for one more thing or to make another change.
The Planning Commission says every time Hendrichsen would come in he had an entirely different project.
Hendrichsen's original and final proposals to the city were the same. They included a 100-acre golf course, 20 acres for commercial development, approximately 500 acres for open space preserve and 390 dwelling units. The development was to include parks, trails, equestrian facilities, and land donated to Nebo School District for a school or park.
"I have a paper trail covering more than a year," Hendrichsen said."There has got to be somebody up there (at the city) that has to take the bull by the horns. I feel bad for the council members who helped me."
Councilwoman Marilyn Petersen, who also sits on the Planning Commission said: "One of the major problems is communication. This is not unlike negotiating with the Palestinians. This has not been a proper negotiation."
Other members of the council are concerned about the potential loss to the city and possibilities Spanish Fork may annex Hendrichsen's property.
"The city probably lost a bundle of money and making a nice area for the community," Councilman Wave Miguel said. "I had a feeling this might happen. I'm really disappointed."
Admitting she was shocked at Hendrichsen's decision, Councilwoman Rea Bleggi said: "I really wasn't prepared for that. I feel like we were the losers."
Councilman Wynn Everett said: "We need a tax base in Mapleton we don't have. I hated to see him pull out, it was possibly a good project."
Everett said he understands Hendrichsen's position but also feels he was a bit impatient. Everett has not ruled out the possibility Hendrichsen might come back to the city some time in the future.