Last night the Twin Falls City Council approved the final plat for the latest Canyon Park development, a planned strip mall located on the canyon rim near Golden Corral.

According to the decision came after council-ordered mediation between developers and affected neighbors in May. Even before mediation, the developers agreed to address access and aesthetics with increased landscaping, split retaining walls to block the backside of the building, and a trailhead park, said marketer Ben Brown. The developers also agreed not to allow fast food restaurants with drive-thrus.

Even though developers promised that the requirements for the strip mall would be very strcit two memebers of the city council, Rebecca Mills-Sojka and Mayor Greg Lanting still weren't on board becasue they felt the Snake River Canyon is a unique asset to the community and should be preserved.

“I just don’t think, from a community design standpoint, it makes sense to add more traffic and more dense development on the edge of the canyon rim,” Mills-Sojka said.

Mayor Greg Lanting also had misgivings about putting the shopping center at the canyon.

“I want the people of Twin Falls to know that if this doesn't turn out, this is permanent,” he said. “I don’t want to be remembered as the person who voted for it.”

But Councilman Shawn Barigar pointed out that this property has been zoned and destined for commercial development for years. He said the undeveloped sage brush, dirt and lack of trails is a detriment. reports that Lanting voted against the PUD agreement, and Mills-Sojka voted against all three Canyon Park-related actions.