The battle about the 2004 El Dorado County General Plan is often framed in terms of growth: Are you for it or against it? I hope we can refocus the conversation to what type of community we want to pass on to our kids and grandchildren. Our supervisors have agreed they want to provide more jobs, capture the tax dollars now going down the hill and provide more moderate and low-cost housing. Do our children and grandchildren disagree with the supervisors’ goals? I think not.
For the last three years I have been very engaged in finding out about the plan and the focused General Plan amendment. In particular I wanted to learn the impacts on the future for Diamond Springs and El Dorado. Initially I was opposed to the amount of high-density housing in the plan, but I have changed my mind. To provide reasonably priced housing for our kids, grandchildren and older residents wanting to be closer to services, we are going to have to provide much higher density of housing.
Our communities of the future will in many ways resemble the original town sites of Diamond Springs and El Dorado — two “old town” villages in the midst of low and moderate housing where residents can easily walk or ride a bike to work, “town,” schools or parks. As a community, almost everyone has embraced the new buildings on Fowler at Pleasant Valley Road because they embrace the past, yet meet the current needs of business. The rural lands surrounding our community region are to remain free of urbanization. “New Town” (Missouri Flat Corridor) will be expanded to capture tax money now being sent out of county and provide many jobs.
We need to get our economy moving again; we need to support our supervisors as they implement our General Plan. It is about our kids and their future.