Council, School Board To Hold Joint Virtual Session Oct. 29 On North Mesa Housing Study


The North Mesa Housing Study will move to the next step on Thursday, Oct. 29, when County Councilors meet the Los Alamos Public School Board in a joint session at 6:00 p.m. on Zoom. 

The County’s consultant, Dekker Perrich Sabatini, will join the LosalDD project team to present the North Mesa Housing Study, a document that was first drafted pre-COVID pandemic and after several public workshops or open house meetings to discuss draft concepts for building homes on land located just east of the Middle School on North Mesa.  

The purpose of the joint session is to gather feedback on the updated document, which explores various options for proceeding, different scenarios for developing the build-out, and advantages or disadvantages of each. DPS also makes some recommendations, which might be acted upon by the Board and Council on Oct. 29.  

One of those recommendations is to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the two entities, with a focus in that document that would better define the roles and responsibilities of the County and the School District. 

The County has received a State of NM grant to assist in installing “back bone” infrastructure to support new housing, but no decisions have been made yet about the best way to proceed.  

“This is the first of many discussions that will pave the way for the North Mesa project to move forward,” said Paul Andrus, CDD Director, “It’s a good opportunity for the Councilors to listen to School Board members and what role they would like to see the County take on, or, how the Schools would like to be involved. That’s a key step in drafting a MOU so that everyone involved – and members of the community – understand what to expect.” 

Andrus said other opportunities will be forthcoming for public input at various steps of the process, once roles and responsibilities are defined and the MOU is in place.  

“This process will involve the MOU, issuance of an RFP to find a developer, approval of Site Plans and rezoning the site, just to name a few areas where the public will be able to comment. There will be public meetings and meetings before the Planning & Zoning Commission. There will be public hearings before the School Board and the Council along the way. No decisions are going to be made without a high level of transparency and communication with the community – especially those living in the surrounding area on North Mesa,” he said.  

Members of the public are welcome to tune into the Zoom webinar on Oct. 29. The link to the Zoom meeting will be released within the next week.  

The updated study will be released on Friday, two weeks ahead of the meeting to give individuals ample time to review it before the meeting.