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El Dorado County Board of Supervisors February 13 El Dorado Hills Apartments Hearing

The El Dorado County Board of Supervisors will conduct a hearing to consider the recommendation of the Planning Commission for approval for the El Dorado Hills Apartments project A16-0001 on Tuesday February 13, 2018  tentatively scheduled for 1:00PM in the Supervisors Meeting room at 330 Fair Lane, Placerville, CA.

The Project seeks to gain four entitlements that will permit the project to move forward with two 4-story apartment buildings comprised of 214 apartment units, and one 5-story parking garage at the corner of Town Center Blvd and Vine Street. The property is currently zoned for commercial development.

The four project entitlements are:

  1. General Plan Amendment adding a new Policy (Policy under Objective 2.2.6 (Site Specific Policy Section) to increase the maximum residential density allowed in the General Plan from 24 dwelling units per acre to a maximum of 47 dwelling units per acre specifically for the 4.565-acre project site within the TCE Planned Development area identified as Assessor’s Parcel Numbers 121-290-60, 61, and 62.
  2. El Dorado Hills Specific Plan Amendment incorporating multi-family residential use, density, and related standards for the project site. The project site would be designated as “Urban Infill Residential” within the Village T area of the EDHSP Plan.
  3. Rezoning of the project site from General Commercial-Planned Development (CG-PD) to Multi-Family Residential-Planned Development (RM-PD) and revisions to the RM-zone district development standards applicable to the proposed 214-unit apartment project
  4. Revision to the approved Town Center East Development Plan incorporating multi-family residential use, density, and related design and development standards for the proposed 214-unit apartment project within Planning Area 2 of the TCE Plan area.

EDH APAC formed a subcommittee to research and review the project. The subcommittee report, which recommended non-support of the project as proposed, can be seen HERE. At the August 9, 2017 APAC meeting, Project applicants generously took time to make a presentation and answer questions about the project. Following this presentation, and a review of the subcommittee report, the full APAC committee voted 7-0 to accept the subcommittee recommendation of non-support. An article in the El Dorado Hills Village Life covered details of the meeting.  Following the meeting, APAC submitted its vote of non-support, along with the detailed subcommittee report, to the El Dorado County Planning Commission, El Dorado County Planning Services Dept, and the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors, and offered the report as a response to the project’s Draft Environmental Impact Report.  A copy of the August 9, 2017 Meeting Minutes can be found HERE

Upon the release of the Final Environmental Impact report in December 2017, EDH APAC offered additional comments to the EDC Planning Commission and EDC Planning Services Dept. concerning both environmental, and non-environmental issues not addressed by the FEIR – the full response can be read HERE.

On January 11, 2018 the El Dorado County Planning Commission reviewed the project and voted 3-2 to approve the project as proposed- with District 1 and District 4 Commissioners opposed.

  • EDH APAC members feel that the Planning Commission, as well as the Final Environmental Impact Report, didn’t adequately address the major concern – a General Plan Amendment allowing the doubling of the 24 dwelling unit per acre multi-family residential standard to 47 dwelling units per acre for this project.
  • EDH APAC members ask: if the standard exists, why is it reasonable to grant an amendment to double it?
  • What benefit does it generate to the County, and more pointedly to El Dorado Hills? EDH APAC members see this as no minor variance.
  • APAC members don’t see the benefit to the County or El Dorado Hills. The sole benefit is that the project applicant will get to build their project.
  • EDH APAC members ask: Is this justification enough to amend the General Plan? EDH APAC members feel that the General Plan is a tool that exists to benefit El Dorado County residents, not as a tool to benefit a single development project, at the expense of residents.

As to the merits of the debate if it is better to allow the project site to stay vacant, or to move forward with this current project as proposed, EDH APAC members counter that the original proponents of the Village T Town Center East Planned Development sought in the early 90s to get what they wanted, and now have – a commercial center, and were rewarded with zoning to that effect. EDH APAC members suggest that the impacts of failure to develop the parcel in their development as granted by the originally requested zoning,  shouldn’t be forced to be borne by the El Dorado Hills community, or by the El Dorado County General Plan. Vacant or developed, the property has the zoning that was requested, and the ability to develop it rests with the owners, and the Town Center East Planned Development – if the project was seeking some simple, minor, modifications to develop the property, that would merit consideration – but a General Plan amendment is never minor.  EDH APAC members don’t believe it merits a General Plan amendment based on the benefits it seeks for itself, in lieu of the lack of benefit to the County, and El Dorado Hills.

Community members wishing to provide public comment or questions in support, or opposition to the project may submit those comments to the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors by Monday, February 12, 2018. Comments via email should be addressed the Clerk of the Board,a s well as to all five Supervisors, to be attached to the project file at the following addresses.

Project A16-0001 El Dorado Hills Apartments
Clerk of the Board
District 1 Supervisor
District 2 Supervisor
District 3 Supervisor
District 4 Supervisor
District 5 Supervisor

The EDH APAC Project Document file can be found HERE