City estimates Village South EIR completion in six months
The city closed the comment period for the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Village South Specific Plan in September and, according to a recent press release, received comments from 66 individuals, agencies and community organizations.
The city reports that comments covered numerous areas of concern including the housing density, building scale, traffic and parking impacts, impact on resources and infrastructure, sustainability and historic preservation.
City staff and its consultant, Sargent Town Planning, said they have reviewed the content of the public comments. Based on the comments, the city directed Sargent Town Planning to revise the maximum housing unit numbers to be consistent with the VSSP Guiding Principles. The EIR will study the impacts of housing mixes ranging between 800-900 units. This maximum range will be used for the environmental study and does not dictate the number in the final Specific Plan or that may be built by a developer. Multiple land use alternatives and scenarios will be included in the Draft EIR.
The city said it anticipates the EIR study will take approximately six months to complete.
“Once a draft EIR is completed, the public will have 45 days to comment on the study,” the press release stated. “Over the next nine months, city staff and Sargent Town Planning will continue to draft the specific plan document. Chapters 1-4 containing building development standards will be released to the public in October. Commission review and public meetings on the draft plan will begin in January/February 2020.”
A specific plan is a planning document that sets forth a community vision for a specific area. New development in the area must be consistent with the planning policies and development standards in the specific plan.
While a specific plan may streamline the process for a developer, the city said, all new development proposed for the area is still subject to the city’s review and approval process. This process includes public hearings and review by commissions and the council.
Information on the Village South Specific Plan process is available on the city website at ci.claremont.ca.us/VSSP.