Church starts work on 100-acre project |

Church starts work on 100-acre project

Duane Johnson

Construction is under way on the new Keystone Community Campus, a wide-ranging complex in north Reno.

Constructed on more than 100 acres north of the intersection of McCarran Boulevard and Keystone Avenue, it will boast a 2,500-seat worship center that includes a church and performing arts center, a campus park, a community center, office buildings and a memorial garden.

A senior living center with dining facilities and social areas also is included in the project.

The project was proposed by the Keystone Community Corp.

formed by University Family Fellowship Church.

The church, founded by Pastor Robert Owens, owns the land upon which the campus will be built.

Since the project was conceived in 1999, the planned capacity of the senior living senior living center has been enlarged from 300 to 400 occupants, said Vern Kloos, interim planning manager for the City of Reno’s Community Planning Department.

Other than minor modifications, Kloos indicated the original plan has remained relatively intact.

“There’s nothing that is significantly different than what was planned up there already,” Kloos said.

Kloos said the permit for the project is unusual because it combines

several distinct structures into one tidy community.

“This is a mixture of several zoning permits into one that you normally wouldn’t be able to do,” he said.

The construction process will be gradual, indeed.

All that’s currently approved is the building of the main road and the memorial gardens.

Development is expected to take several years.

Nearby residents are a bit leery about the development.

The project will surround the Sky Country Estate and Kings View Estate subdivisions.

Carl Bonstead, a resident of Kings Row Estates, has taken a keen interest in the project.

One potential problem that Bonstead and many of the residents see is would arise from open access between the complex and the subdivisions.

The main entrance to the complex would be an extension of Keystone Avenue that will run through the entire community.

At community planning meetings, subdivision residents have said that outlets next to the campus need to be gated and used for emergency access only.

Gating the outlets, they contend, would lessen the impact of heavy traffic that would use the subdivisions to and from Keystone.

When the Keystone Community is complete, an average of 5,000 to 6,000 commuters will go to and from the complex on a daily basis.

Another concern of some arises from the campus park that includes a youth gymnasium and adjacent baseball/softball fields.

Some say they’d be bothered by lights from the field.

One proposal, Bonstead said, is to switch the locations of the gym and ballfields.

Owens and other church officials declined several requests to discuss plans for the community.

The project also will have a positive effect on the neighborhood.

For one thing, Bonstead noted that it might eliminate the area’s attraction to off-road adventurers and people who dispose of garbage on the land.

“I think it should alleviate some of the problems with ATVs running around behind our house,” Bonstead said.

He said the community’s complaints generally have been mild.

“I think most people are happy with it,” Bonstead said.