OAK CREEK HOUSING DEVELOPMENT APPROVED

NEAR FELICITA PARK

Issue:

Oak Creek is a proposal for a 65-home gated residential development on the Homeland ‘Duck Pond’ property near Felicita Park.  The land is known to contain contamination from the Chatham Barrel Yard and other agricultural contaminants and site drains into Felicita Creek.

Summary:

 

New Urban West http://www.nuwi.com/, a Santa Monica development company, has secured permission to annex land currently in the County into the city and develop a large, 65-home, gated housing development on the 41 acres of open space near the Felicita Park on Felicita Road, Hamilton Lane, and Miller Avenue.  

ENU raised concerns about the following issues:

  • Conversion of open space and agriculture land to a gated housing development.
  • Impact to over 200 existing trees including Englemann and California oak trees.
  • Addition of over 700 trips a day to existing traffic.
  • Creation of effective annexation ‘islands’ for both the city and the County.
  • Potential worsening of flooding and erosion of Felicita Creek and threaten downstream areas.
  • Impact Bernardo Elementary School and the already severely impacted Bernardo Avenue.
  • Failure to adopt most protective measures related to contamination on site. 

ENU Position/

Recommendation: 

ENU has many concerns about this project and opposed this project. Our Document Archive includes many letters filed detailing our concerns about the project. 

Expected Decision-Making Process: 

Since the city piece-mealed the environmental analysis of this project, Oak Creek cannot be built until the Southwest Sewer Upgrade is completed.  This project recently received its environmental and project approval from the city. 


Current Status

The City of Escondido adopted the FEIR and the project on a 4-1 vote on March 4, 2015.

LAFCO approved the annexation of this project on October 5, 2015.  You can read more here 

http://escondidoneighborsunited.blogspot.com/2015/10/lafco-ignores-community-concerns-and.html  

How YOU can take action

We will need ton continue to monitor the implementation of this project.

If you live along the Creek, please document with photos and video, the creek conditions during the rains this season.  This will be important baseline information to compare to once the project is put in and the impermeablilty of the areas (pavement and hardscape) is significantly increased. 

 Background:

 

  • ENU has engaged in this project for many months.  Our letters and activities are documented in the Community Updates and on the Document Archive.
  • ENU requests the DEIR be deferred until after the DTSC has completed the Site Assessment of the contamination at the Homeland site and all data is available to the public for review.
  • Over 80 letters and comments were submitted to the City in response to the Notice of Preparation.
  • City Staff held a Scoping meeting on May 18, 2014.  Over 50 residents attended.
  • ENU wrote the Water Board to request support for a Scoping meeting on Oak Creek since City staff refused to hold one based on residents-only request.
  • ENU members wrote several letters to City staff and Council requesting an EIR level of analysis for the project.
  • A public meeting was held by the city to discuss the project in January, 2014.
  • DTSC opened a Site Assessment of the Homeland/Oak Creek site and listed several comments on the Work Plan to collect data for the site. An agreement was signed between DTSC and New Urban West to limit liability under the California Land Reuse Act.
  • A pre-annexation vote was held in April, 2013 by the Esc City Council.  The developers did selective outreach and many in the community were unaware of the issue at the time.
  • An earlier project proposed by Standard Pacific Homes was proposed, then withdrawn for the site.  Several letters raising concerns were filed with the City.

Key Documents

Oak Creek


Maps

Proposed Oak Creek development site