Presentation on theme: "Don’t Let Gigantic Development Jam Our Rural Roads, Dry Up Our Wells, Kill Our Wildlife."— Presentation transcript:
Don’t Let Gigantic Development Jam Our Rural Roads, Dry Up Our Wells, Kill Our Wildlife
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”
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
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
Developing a commercial center will turn the “pastures” into a city. Consequently, traffic congestion, noise, light will ruin our lifestyle.
Four times larger than Stone Creek in Del Rey Oaks With little done to reduce the negative impacts of increased traffic and water use.
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
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?)
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
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?
Water Traffic Storm water runoff Noise and neon Wildlife
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
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
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
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
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?
The sycamores would be cut and replaced by an urban tower.
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
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
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