Residential Areas Near McKinley Park Face Potential Changes to Building Codes

City Council Public Hearing on Modifications for East Sac!
Tuesday, September 27, 2016
. pdf Attachments show potential changes.
The proposal before the City Council would do the following:
  1. Move the west boundary of the Alhambra Corridor SPD easterly to 29th Street. That still keeps it across the freeway, but would allow the base zones to control from 26th to 29th, where now they are controlled by the SPD, which is more limiting. Land that would be outside the SPD after this action would be rezoned to a number of different zones.
  2. Exempt the land between 30th and Alhambra Boulevard, from I Street to N Street, from the SPD Residential Preservation Transition Buffer Zone, which currently controls height. With the amendment, buildings proposed in this area could be 65 feet high, with the following restrictions:
    1. Within 39 feet of a residential zone, 45 feet max.
    2. Within 40-79 feet of a residential zone, 55 feet
    3. More than 80 feet from a residential zone, 65 feet max.
  3. Since the distance limitation is to a zone, not an actual house, the only area that will have restricted height is between I and J, 30th and Alhambra, because land immediately to the east is zoned R1. It is also unclear where the measurement is made. If it is the street centerline, as is the current requirement, then given the width of Alhambra, which is about 66 feet, any building could likely be built at 45 feet in that area. However, I would imagine that the city would interpret that if a parcel has a portion of its land area within 79 feet, and a portion greater than 80 feet, they can extend to 55 feet in that portion that is less than 79 feet, and 65 feet on that portion which is more than 80 feet away from the zone. Further, all the land south of J and adjacent to Alhambra is zoned commercial, so everything from J to N can be 65 feet high.
  4. For areas north of I Street, between 30th and Alhambra, the existing 300 foot distance limitation from a residential zone would remain, which restricts buildings to 35 feet in height.

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McKinley Pond Renovation Update

East Sacramento Preservation Board Member Judy McClaver recieved the Good Neighbor Award from and was featured in their blog post (below).

Although tickled by the award Judy is currently right in the thick of the pond renovation. “The geese have finally left and about 66% of the ducks. There are some still hanging around. I have put water out for them on the east side of the pond outside of the fence. People can help them by replenishing the water. There is a plastic bag in the watering area with two liter plastic bottles to refill from the drinking fountain,” she said.

She continues to advocate for the safety of the waterfowl and turtles with the pond projects started, but there are still turtles that need rescuing. McClaver worked out a plan with Sacramento City Parks that the donated plants in the pond’s planters can be saved and replanted in the pond when the project is done. The duck ramp is to be reinstalled for ducklings.

McClaver stresses that the job is far from done. “Piles of debris on the island from contractor’s trimming need to be removed and the waterfowl feeding signs need to be put in the pond where people will see them (line of sight) not above people’s heads,” she said.

Good Neighbor Awards

Sacramento’s “First Lady of Waterfowl” Awarded Good Neighbor Award

Judy working from a boat to clean trash and debris out of McKinley Pond.

Written by Danielle Styskal

Each month, Nextdoor is honoring the good neighbors who are making a difference in their neighborhoods every day with our Good Neighbor Award. Each winner is nominated by their neighbors and will receive a gift card from Nextdoor in recognition of the positive impact they have made in their community.

To nominate a good neighbor in your community, click here.

According to several of her neighbors, every city should be so lucky as to have their own “First Lady of Waterfowl,” as Judy McClaver is fondly referred to in Sacramento.

Sacramento’s Good Neighbor Award winner, Judy McClaver.

Sacramento’s Good Neighbor Award winner, Judy McClaver.

Since late 2012, Judy has been fervently volunteering her time to improve the local pond and its surroundings in Sacramento’s McKinley Park. Judy first noticed that the pond was becoming contaminated and dangerous, and turned to the local City Council to have the water tested.

She now walks the park each day to clean up fallen tree branches that park patrons sometimes throw into the pond, causing injury to the pond’s wildlife. She removedbamboo from the pond’s island that was killing the waterfowl and attracting rats – and was ultimately causing odor and adding leaf debris to the pond. Then, she put in new plants.

Judy working from a boat to clean trash and debris out of McKinley Pond.

Judy working from a boat to clean trash and debris out of McKinley Pond.

Uneducated park visitors often feed the waterfowl, causing malnutrition and deformities, so Judy worked with the local Parks Department to implement and post a waterfowl feeding policy that educates others on why bread and human food is harmful.

Judy educating visitors to the pond about ducks and geese and proper feeding to avoid malnutrition and wing and beak deformities.

Judy educating visitors to the pond about ducks and geese and proper feeding to avoid malnutrition and wing and beak deformities.

And, when a family of wild ducks from the pond ends up in a storm drain or backyard swimming pool, Judy is the first person her neighbors turn to for help – she’s an expert in trapping and relocating the waterfowl to a new, safe habitat.

Judy’s efforts haven’t gone unnoticed by her grateful neighbors. According to one, “She volunteers to help clean up our local park, assists in wildlife rescue, and is an all-around great neighbor to have. We’re so lucky to have her living here.”

Says another, “Judy is a treasure.”

Judy is willing to do the work to maintain the beauty of a prized local park – all out of the goodness of her heart. Congratulations on being named Sacramento’s Nextdoor Good Neighbor Award Winner!

Do you have a story about how you have used Nextdoor in your neighborhood? Let us know.


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