/ Modified apr 9, 2018 10:10 a.m.

Developer Defends Plans for Monastery Amid Opposition

Ross Rulney cites preservation through landmark designation.

This week, Arizona 360 looked at potential plans for the Benedictine Monastery in Tucson. The midtown site is just one of several developments proposed in the city creating concern over potential impact on surrounding neighborhoods.

Tucson City Councilman Steve Kozachik joined host Vanessa Barchfield to discuss the council’s approach in deciding which projects it supports, and how it works with developers and the community to reach a consensus.

Developer Ross Rulney unveiled his plan for the monastery property during a public meeting last week. This prompted concerns from Kozachik that were echoed by some in the Tucson community.

“We’re going to move forward with this project, but … when we saw the proposal at the public meeting that we held last week, it was jarring. It is seven stories that dwarfs the existing chapel,” said Kozachik.

Rulney joined Arizona 360 to further explain his vision for the property and how he is handling feedback from the neighborhood.

“If I am going to develop that property, the monastery will be preserved through a landmark designation, in perpetuity,” said Rulney.

Rulney said his decision to hire Poster Frost Mirto, a preservation architecture firm in Tucson, demonstrates his intention to preserve the monastery while still developing the surrounding land.

Arizona 360
Arizona 360 airs Fridays at 8:30 p.m. on PBS 6 and Saturdays at 8 p.m. on PBS 6 PLUS. See more from Arizona 360.
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