A public hearing on the proposed West River 40 subdivision originally scheduled for this week has been postponed to allow all agencies to submit comment on the proposed subdivision.

The rescheduled hearing before Gallatin County Commissioners will be on Tuesday, Dec. 7, at 9 a.m. in the Community Room of the Gallatin County Courthouse, 311 W. Main, in Bozeman.

The 359-house subdivision proposed for the former 166-acre Don Westra farm at West Valley Center and Thorpe roads, was given 3-2 conditional approval last month by the Belgrade Planning Board. That recommendation is advisory only, and Gallatin County Commissioners ultimately will decide to either approve or deny the plan.

As the Belgrade News reported on Oct. 21 and Oct 28, the development’s many opponents say it is too dense and that it would adversely impact wildlife and old growth trees.

The site is located west of the existing Gallatin Heights subdivision. Of the 359 lots planned, most are single family, with a few commercial lots along Valley Center Road and a site for an elementary school.

“It’s my understanding that they (the county commission) were waiting for more information from Fish, Wildlife and Parks,” said Belgrade City Planner Jason Karp. “They got it. And they were negotiating with irrigation ditch owners.

“The county commission didn’t want to hear, table, wait. Like in the past. Wanted to not risk forgetting what the testimony had been earlier. The hope is to reach a decision at the time (of the hearing),” Karp said.