APAC Project Documents
NOTICE OF PREPARATION OF A DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT REPORT AND NOTICE OF PUBLIC SCOPING MEETING FOR THE VINEYARDS AT EL DORADO HILLS
DATE: October 11, 2017
TO: Interested Parties
FROM: Rommel (Mel) Pabalinas, Senior Planner, County of El Dorado
The County of El Dorado (County) will be the lead agency under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) for preparation of an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the proposed Vineyards at El Dorado Hills (Project) in El Dorado County. This Notice of Preparation (NOP) and notice of publicscoping meeting has been issued to solicit comments from responsible and trustee agencies and other interested parties regarding the scope and content of the environmental information and analyses that should be included in the Draft EIR. The location, project description, project entitlement requests, and potentialenvironmental effects of the proposed project are summarized below.
Comments and suggestions are requested during the 30-day public comment period for the NOP regarding the environmental issues that will be analyzed in the EIR. Agencies and interested parties may provide the County with written comments on topics to be addressed in the EIR for the project. Because of time limitsmandated by State law, comments should be provided no later than 5:00 PM on November 13, 2017. Keep in mind that there will be another opportunity to submit detailed comments when the Draft EIR is released for public review. Please mail, email, or fax your comments to:
Rommel (Mel) Pabalinas, Senior Planner
El Dorado County Development Services Department, Planning Division 2850 Fair Lane Court, Building C
Placerville, CA 95667
Fax: (530) 642-0508
The County will hold a public scoping meeting to provide additional information about the Project and to receive verbal and written comments.
Date: Thursday, October 26, 2017
Time: 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Where: El Dorado Hills Fire Department Station No. 85, 1050Wilson Boulevard, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762
The scoping meeting format will be an open house; interested parties may arrive at any time during the 2-hour window to receive information on the Project or provide comments.
The proposed Vineyards at El Dorado Hills (project) is located east of El Dorado Hills, California, an unincorporated area of El Dorado County (County) that is approximately 23 miles east of Sacramento and 20 miles west of Placerville (see Figure 1). The project site is located in a rural area with existing rural and single-familyresidential uses located in the vicinity. Malcolm Dixon Road is located along the southern project boundary (see Figure 2). The project site is identified by Assessor’s Parcel Number (APN) 126-100-24. Most of the site is characterized by gentle to moderate slopes (see Figure 3), with scattered individual oak trees with majority of theoak woodlands concentrated in the northwest corner of the project (see Figure 4). Six existing structures are located in the southern portion of the project site near Malcolm Dixon Road. These structures include a schoolhouse, barn, pumphouse, and associated outbuildings located in the southwest area of the site, and aresidence and outbuildings in the southeast area of the site. The surrounding land uses include oak woodlands and rural residential uses to the north, Malcolm Dixon Road, low density residential uses, and Green Valley Road to the south, Arroyo Vista Way, oak woodlands, and rural residential uses to the east, and oakwoodlands, Salmon Falls Road, and rural residential uses to the west.
The project site is approximately 114.03 acres (4,967,147 square feet) of largely undeveloped nonnative grassland and oak woodland and ranges in elevation from approximately 687 to 879 feet above sea level sloping gently east to west. The County General Plan designates the project site as Low Density Residential (LDR) (seeFigure 5). The County’s zoning code designates the project site as Estate Residential – 5-acre (RE-5) (see Figure 5).
1. Site Design
The proposed project includes development of 42 single-family residential lots on a total of
42.23 acres (see Figures 6 and 7). The remaining approximately 71.8 acres would include one 6.22-acre roadway lot and five open space lots totaling 65.58 acres.
The 42 residential lots are a minimum of one acre in size, ranging from 43,560 square feet to a 46,562 square feet.
The project is requesting a density bonus, as provided by General Plan Policy 126.96.36.199 and Zoning Ordinance Section 130.28.060. General Plan Policy 188.8.131.52 provides for a density bonus of 1.5 dwelling units, in addition to the number of base units allowed, for each unit of developable land set aside as open space. Section130.28.060 of the County Code has similar provisions, providing for density bonuses where a new minimum of 30 percent of the land area within a residential development project is set aside for commonly owned or publicly dedicated open space, as defined in Article 8 of the Code. The proposed project includes 65.58 acresof open space uses, 65.1 acres of which would count towards the minimum open space requirement. These open space areas would make up 57.1 percent of the project site. The density bonus calculation for the project is as follows:
Base Units Permitted Under the General Plan
114.03 acres developable land x 0.2 dwelling units per acre (Low Density Residential) = 22.8 base units
Density Bonus Unit
65.1 acres developable open space x 0.2 dwelling units per acre (Low Density Residential) x
1.5 density bonus = 19.53 density bonus units
Total Allowed Units = 42.33 units (22.8 base units + 19.53 density bonus units)
The five open space lots, totaling 65.58 acres, have been designed to include the existing schoolhouse and to preserve portions of oak woodlands and the majority of the identified wetlands and other waters on the project site.
The proposed project may include a small-scale vineyard that will be planted within the open space lots and managed by the Home Owners’ Association (HOA) or its designee. No production or distribution facilities are proposed on the project site. The project may include restoration of existing structures, including the schoolhouse,or construction of new structures to facilitate vineyard operations and events.
2. Access, Circulation, and Parking
Malcolm Dixon Road, a two-lane roadway, is located along the southern project boundary. The project site is currently accessed via a private road off of Malcolm Dixon Road. This existing access would be improved as part of the proposed project. A secondary project access would be constructed along Malcolm Dixon Road,west of the existing access. Internal roadways would also be constructed, including local and cul-de-sac streets. The proposed circulation system, including access points, is shown on Figure 6.
A variety of pedestrian circulation amenities would be included in the project, including pedestrian paths along most streets and a series of multi-use trails within the project site. A multi-use trail through the project may connect from Malcolm Dixon Road to the future developments to the north and through the development.
3. Improvements and Infrastructure
Water service would be provided by El Dorado Irrigation District (EID). The project site is not within the EID service boundary and will require annexation before service can be obtained. EID has facilities located near the northern project boundary, including an 18-inch water line and the Salmon Falls Tank. An eight-inch waterline is located south of the property in Alta Vista Court. Additionally, a 12-inch water line is located in Green Valley Road. The project would provide on-site water infrastructure improvements including a booster station.
Each of the residential lots would be served by an on-site septic system.
The project site is located within the New York Creek watershed. Runoff from the southeast corner of the project site flows into the uppermost reaches of Dutch Ravine, which is confluent with New York Creek approximately 0.85 miles to the west. The majority of the site currently drains from east to west into lesser, unnamedtributaries that join the main New York Creek channel less than 0.4 miles west of the site. There are few existing drainage structures affected by site runoff.
Proposed site grading will maintain existing drainage patterns to the maximum extent practicable. The majority of the lots would drain to the rear. The project includes an on-site detention basin located in Lot C, north of Lots 21 and 22 and southwest of Lot 34. The proposed storm drainage system would be designed to ensurethat post-construction runoff volumes do not exceed pre-development conditions. In addition to mitigating post-development runoff, the project will be required to capture and treat the 85th percentile 24-hour storm event per current Phase II municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4) Permit and El Dorado County WestSlope Development and Redevelopment Standards and Post Construction Storm Water Plan Requirements.
Electrical, gas, phone, cable and related internet services would be extended to all portions of the project site from existing facilities located along Malcolm Dixon Road, or other utility systems in the project area.
4. Public Services
Law enforcement services would be provided by the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department. Fire protection and emergency medical services would be provided by the El Dorado Hills Fire Department (EDH Fire). The project site is not within the El Dorado County Water District (EDH Fire) service boundary and will requireannexation before structural fire protection and emergency medical services can be obtained. The project site is located within the Rescue Union School District and the El Dorado Union High School District. Solid waste services would be provided by El Dorado Disposal.
A tentative subdivision map for the project has been submitted as part of the project application. The tentative subdivision map includes a circulation and phasing plan for the project. The project would be developed in four phases. Phase I would include development of lots 9 through 16, and lots 41 and 42; Phase II would includedevelopment of lots 1 through 8; Phase III would include development of lots 17 through 27; Phase IV would include development of lots 28 through 40.
In October 2009, El Dorado County certified a Mitigated Negative Declaration and approved a Tentative Subdivision Map, known as Diamante Estates, for the project site. The Diamante Estates project included 19 single family lots, ranging in size from 5.0 to 9.9 acres, and one 2.2-acre open space lot. As part of the DiamanteEstates approval, the project site was rezoned from Exclusive Agriculture (AE) to Estate Residential 5-acre. The Diamante Estates project included public water service from EID and individual septic systems. The Diamante Estates project required El Dorado County Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) approval ofannexation of the project site into both the EID and EDH Fire boundaries.
In August 2014, LAFCO conditionally approved the Diamante Estates Reorganization into the EID and EDH Fire boundaries. Outstanding LAFCO conditions include US Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) authorization for inclusion into EID’s service area and payment of State Board of Equalization fees. In January 2016, EIDapproved the annexation of the project site into its service area and sent the inclusion application to USBR. In 2015, LAFCO approved a one-year extension for the reorganization request and, in June 2016, LAFCO approved a two-year extension for the project site’s reorganization into the EID and EDH Fire boundarieswhich extended the deadline to August 27, 2018. In the event that all LAFCO conditions are not completed by this deadline, the project proponent may be required to reapply to LAFCO for annexation into EID and EDH Fire.
PROPOSED ENTITLEMENT REQUESTS
This NOP and Initial Study evaluate the potential environmental impacts associated with the approval of the Vineyards at El Dorado Hills project. Approvals from the County and other jurisdictional agencies and service providers are necessary.
Actions to be taken by the County in approving the project include, but are not limited to:
Rezone (Z16-0002) of subject property adding a Planned Development (-PD) overlay zone to the underlying zoning of Estate Residential, 5-acre minimum (RE-5) resulting in a new zoning of Estate Residential, 5-acre-Planned Development (RE-5-PD)
Tentative Subdivision Map (TM16-1528) of 114.03-acre property creating a total of 42 residential lots, with lots ranging from a minimum of 43,560 square feet to a maximum of 46,562 square feet, 1 roadway lot, and 5 open space lots; and
Planned Development Permit (PD16-0001) establishing an official development plan for the Vineyards at El Dorado Hills project. The proposed development is consistent with the existing land use and zoning designations for the project site.
Permits that the project has obtained or will be required to obtain include, but are not limited to:
Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board (CVRWQCB) – Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) approval prior to construction activities pursuant to the Clean Water Act;
El Dorado Irrigation District – Facility Plan Report;
El Dorado Hills Fire District – Plan review and approval; and
El Dorado County Air Quality Management District (AQMD) – Approval of construction- related air quality permits.
Additional project information, including the Initial Study, can be accessed via the following web link:
ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS AND PROJECT ALTERNATIVES
PROBABLE ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS:
Based on a preliminary environmental analysis of the project, the County has determined that the range of issues identified in the CEQA Guidelines, listed below, shall be addressed in the EIR.