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Don’t Let Gigantic Development Jam Our Rural Roads, Dry Up Our Wells, Kill Our Wildlife.

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Presentation on theme: "Don’t Let Gigantic Development Jam Our Rural Roads, Dry Up Our Wells, Kill Our Wildlife."— Presentation transcript:

1 Don’t Let Gigantic Development Jam Our Rural Roads, Dry Up Our Wells, Kill Our Wildlife

2  Historically, the Grossi Ranch’s pastures symbolized our rural, agrarian lifestyle  Over the years, attempts at establishing an assisted-living center there have been thwarted  Now, developers want to pave it over for a large shopping center even though the Toro Area Plan policy aims to “preserve the essentially rural quality of life”

3  A ranch property is proposed to become a commercial shopping center bigger than Wal-Mart  126,000 square feet, not including the existing abandoned gas station  Pavement for 500 parking spaces – creating polluting storm water runoff – though some mitigation is proposed  Traffic, traffic and more traffic -- the cumulative effects  Water supply depletion -- adding to existing overdraft identified by county water studies  Blocking natural wildlife corridors

4  The pasture tucked behind the abandoned Exxon station, which is not part of the development proposal, needs protection  Otherwise, the corner of Corral de Tierra Road and Highway 68 will become a gigantic traffic nightmare  Pastures of Heaven will turn into a parking lot from hell

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6  Developing a commercial center will turn the “pastures” into a city.  Consequently, traffic congestion, noise, light will ruin our lifestyle.

7  Four times larger than Stone Creek in Del Rey Oaks  With little done to reduce the negative impacts of increased traffic and water use.

8  Phelps buys 5.5 acres of property being dry farmed in the 1970's. It is zoned agricultural/residential  Sues the county to get zoning changed to commercial  Toro neighbors fight off Beverly Manor attempts to get permits for assisted-living facilities  Project size grows to 11 acres, still not including Exxon station lot  Phelps sues the county again, causing the planners to adhere to a court order to complete permit process this year

9  County places B-8 Zoning Overlay on the Corral de Tierra/San Benancio Area including this property because wells have failed  Phelps could build on his lots of record but not add to existing water problems  Other issues under B-8 – traffic and sewage (don’t forget an 88 percent increase in sewage fees are proposed. Are they related? What do you think?)

10  Many neighbors have questioned planners about this proposal, but county officials always refer to the Environmental Impact Report for answers  However, when you look at the EIR, you find it woefully inadequate in addressing water, traffic and biological resources issues  EIR recommendations out of sync with alternatives

11  No scoping hearing was ever held, so planners started off in the wrong direction and have come to wrong conclusions, i.e., the alternatives were chosen before meaningful analysis.  Out-of-county consultant prepares EIR with many errors, i.e., doesn't understand area hydrology and the inadequate groundwater supply.  Traffic study underestimates number of trips and erroneously describes potential road improvements, i.e., no peer review of findings. An independent study reaches conclusion that traffic will be in gridlock.  Omissions on wildlife – where are the buzzards and deer?

12  Water  Traffic  Storm water runoff  Noise and neon  Wildlife

13  Toro groundwater in overdraft (2007 hydrological study), water table has been dropping about 2 feet per year since 1999  Cal Am, Alco and Ambler water purveyors already incapable of meeting current rural demand, and charging surrounding residents higher rates to install infrastructure for this proposed urban service

14  Left-turn lanes to gridlock, with no widening of Highway 68 or Corral de Tierra Road  Whatever happened to the promise of a parallel parkway through former Fort Ord?  No money, no plans, no through traffic  Just a Corral of cars and trucks  Just like the gridlock on Highway 101 at the Red Barn

15  Still questions on retention and detention of paved surface runoff  Recharge system unproven  Runoff of oil and water from paved areas undetermined  Leach fields adjacent to groundwater supply? -- Developer says “I don’t know”  Where will this polluted water go? Who knows? It is inadequately addressed in the EIR

16  Delivery trucks will pull into loading docks throughout the night  The rev from refrigeration units will bounce off our walls like the Laguna Seca engines we hear all year long – it will be much closer as the trucks become our neighbors  A 52-foot tower – 17 feet higher than zoning allows – will light up the sky  Light standards will dot the parking lots  Neon signs will hang in front of stores

17  Riparian habitat and historic oaks and sycamores will be slashed and burned  Migration paths will be paved over  However, garbage bins will provide nourishment for critters  Will the buzzards hovering above join the gridlock?

18 The sycamores would be cut and replaced by an urban tower.

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20  Write letters opposing the Corral de Tierra Neighborhood Retail Village to:  Luis Osorio, Senior Planner, Monterey County Planning Department, 168 W. Alisal St., Salinas CA 9390, or  Questions? Call Osorio at , or John Ford, planning services manager, at  Attend hearings. Planning Commission is scheduled to hear the issue on November 10,  Contact your county Supervisors, including Lou Calcagno ( ), Fernando Armenta ( ), Simon Salinas ( ), Jane Parker ( ), Dave Potter ( ).  Visit our website:  Sign the petition and share it with your friends

21  Neighbors have tried to propose reasonable alternatives, including purchase of the property for park and open space use  Spot zoning should not be approved until all all environmental mitigations are fully proven  The B-8 overlay should remain in place, and its constraints recognized  Consider a much smaller “convenience” shop

22  Go to the Planning Commission hearing, tentatively scheduled for November 10,  Study the EIR – e%20Tierra/Corral_De_Tierra.htm  Write letters to Supervisors and newspapers  Join the Highway 68 Coalition, sign and share petitions  Together, we can preserve our rural community and environment

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