After a lengthy hearing on Tuesday, the Creekside Plaza development was approved unanimously by the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors.
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The new development will include a one-story professional building that will house the Social Security office along with other tenants, a one-story retail building, and a fast food restaurant on a 4.1-acre site at the northwest corner of the intersection of Forni and Missouri Flat roads.
The approved project was downsized by 8,762 square feet of building space in response to the court of appeals overturning the county’s Oak Woodland Management Plan. The adopted plan protects 90 percent of the site’s oak canopy and adds to it by replacing 10 percent of the oaks impacted by the buildings.
The revised project plans drew both praise and criticism from members of the public.
Marsha Burch asked for more time to review the revisions, saying that significant impacts remained and an EIR should be prepared. County planners had issued a mitigated negative declaration on the project.
Laurel Brent-Bumb, CEO of the El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce, spoke positively about the project, saying the site currently generates $1,800 a year in revenue but with the project would generate $110,000 a year as well as $45,000 in sales tax revenue. “This project has been vetted for over three years and the developer wants good projects for the county. Let’s move some dirt,” she said.
Supervisorial candidate Sue Taylor countered Brent-Bumb by saying that the county only receives a percent of the sales tax revenue, with the rest going to the state. “This is an over-sized project for a substandard piece of property,” she said.
Many of those criticizing the project were concerned about the impact it would have on children at nearby Herbert Green Middle School and on traffic in the area during hours when the children are either being dropped off or picked up.
However, the El Dorado County Office of Education indicated support for the project in a letter to the Board of Supervisors and Leonard Grado, developer of the project, said that peak traffic hours for the site wouldn’t coincide with peak traffic hours for the middle school.
He also stated that the project would generate about $5 million in taxable sales and $400,000 in sales taxes, of which El Dorado County would receive approximately $45,000.
After the meeting, Grado stated that he expected construction to begin in mid-June or early July and for the project to be completed by April 2013.
Contact Dawn Hodson at 530-344-5071 or [email protected] Follow @DHodsonMtDemo on Twitter.