Thursday May 20 2010
Village 7 advances to City Council for approval
By: Stephanie Dumm, News Messenger Reporter
Lincoln’s Planning Commission approved the preliminary plans for Village 7 during Wednesday night’s meeting. Not everyone agreed with the recommendation to approve the plans. Village 7 consists of 515 acres of land, which is owned by Lewis Planned Communities, according to Rod Campbell, Lincoln’s director of development services. The plan could result in the building of 3,285 “dwelling units,” and bring in an estimated 7, 386 residents, according to Campbell. In addition to that, 12 acres of land have been set aside for commercial use, and 281 acres of open space, to meet the 2050 General Plan’s requirement of 40 percent open space for the village, according to Campbell. Campbell said that construction on the village wasn’t likely to begin until 2013. During the May 19 planning commission meeting, seven resolutions were adopted recommending actions including approval of the Village 7 specific plan, certification for the final environmental impact report and an application to annex the Lewis property into the city of Lincoln. Before the Planning Commission made their decision, details were presented to the public by Lewis Operating Corporation vice president of community development William Mellerup, and then audience members were given the chance to speak about concerns regarding Village 7. Scott Leaman, superintendent for the Western Placer Unified School District, expressed concerns over the funding of the 12-acre elementary school included in the project plans. Leaman recalled attending a meeting prior to the adoption of the General Plan, where sewers had been discussed. “At the meeting, the city stated that future sewers in the villages shouldn’t negatively impact the current sewer system,” Leaman said. “Strangely enough, we are asking the same for the schools in the villages. There are not enough funds being offered to build and elementary school, and serve middle and high school students.” Mellerup told the planning commission that Lewis Communities are “willing to continue working” with the school district on the matter. “I thought although the planning commission approved the plan, I felt they supported the district strongly in our request to be involved in the planning,” Leaman said. “We will continue to meet with the developer and continue with the discussion, and we have confidence it will result in for adequate funding for the students in that area.” Paul Denzler, a Lincoln resident and local dentist, brought up his concern about what qualifies as open space, particularly regarding linear parkways in the village. According to the Village 7 general development plan, linear parkways, or “landscaped corridors” with trees would run alongside Ferrari Ranch Road, Moore Road, and the village’s central boulevard, and would constitute as open space. “Most people think parks and habitats, not landscaping seen on sides of streets in Lincoln,” Denzler said. “If we’ll count landscaping on sides of streets as open space, why not consider front yards? In my mind what’s happening is they have 40 percent open space requirement and (will) create 46 acres of open space by widening landscaping on the side of roads.” Linear parkways can count as open space, according to Campbell. “At the end of the day, we’ll meet the 40 percent open space, you just tell us what to do,” Mellerup said.