Four Corners will soon be home to another subdivision.

The Gallatin County Commission has unanimously approved the preliminary plat for 96 single-family homes west of Bozeman.

The lots for each home — which will range in size from 8,000 to 16,000 square feet — will sit on 55 acres off of Baxter Lane between Shandalyn Lane and Black Bull Trail. The subdivision will include seven parks that total 20 acres and that are connected by trails.

The Creekside Meadows subdivision is one of about five developments around Jackrabbit and Love lanes projected to create hundreds of new homes over the next several years. The Creekside Meadows development will be built in two phases and will likely be completed in three years.

The new subdivision, along with the other developments planned for the area, will require the county to widen Baxter Lane from 24 feet to at least 28 feet. The developers working on projects along Baxter Lane between Jackrabbit and Love lanes will likely contribute money to the road expansion. The county said it would set aside that money until it has a specific plan for widening Baxter Lane.

At a meeting on Tuesday, a nearby homeowner expressed concern that the county commissioners aren’t considering making Baxter Lane wider than 28 feet to allow for features like bike lanes and sidewalks. He added that the county’s transportation plan and the Triangle Plan — a document that details policies for the area between Bozeman, Belgrade and Four Corners — emphasize non-motorized transportation options.

Another homeowner said completing the expansion after the new subdivisions are built is a safety issue because there will be a period when Baxter Lane will have more traffic than it can handle.

The commissioners said widening roads is expensive and requires easements, which can limit when and where the county can build. Because there are no plans for Baxter Lane, future expansion efforts could make the road wider than 28 feet.

“We will reach the capacity of Baxter Lane at some point in the future, and we’ll have to address it at that time,” Commissioner Joe Skinner said.

The Planning and Coordination Committee — a group of Belgrade, Bozeman and Gallatin County officials — is finalizing the Triangle Plan. The county is working on a transportation plan, a trails plan and its growth policy, all of which will create a framework for building roads and trails for cars, bikes and pedestrians, said Commissioner Scott MacFarlane.

“We are scrambling in almost every way to get the plans we need to develop in the way we need going forward,” he said.

At Commissioner Don Seifert’s request, the Creekside Meadows subdivision will include a trail easement that would enable the development’s trails to connect to a future trail along Baxter Lane. The easement would help the county build a trail system outside Bozeman and Belgrade, which the commissioners discussed with the Gallatin Valley Land Trust last week.

“If we don’t start with trails now, we won’t get there,” Seifert said.

Creekside Meadows will join the Four Corners Water and Sewer District, which is adding a second wastewater treatment center near the intersection of U.S. 191 and Huffine Lane to provide service to the growing number of homes in Four Corners.

“This is the kind of development we want to see in that area,” Seifert said.

Perrin Stein can be reached at pstein@dailychronicle.com or at 582-2648.

Support quality local journalism. Become a subscriber.

Subscribers get full, survey-free access to the Bozeman Daily Chronicle's award-winning coverage both on our website and in our e-edition, a digital replica of the print edition.