Tag Archives: East Sacramento Neighborhood Associations
Our neighborhood group has received many queries about the identities of the plaintiffs against McKinley Village developers and the City, what exactly this will do and why should other neighborhoods be concerned.
Q: Who is East Sacramento Partnerships for a Livable City (ESPLC)?
A: East Sacramento Preservation is not the plaintiff. East Sacramento Partnerships for a Livable City (ESPLC) is a small group of East Sacramento neighbors who have the means to fund a lawsuit and court battle. They live in the community and care deeply for East Sacramento.
Q: Why are they suing?
A: ESPLC brought the suit because they believed the McKinley Village Project, as proposed, would produce serious traffic congestion and hazard. They are not antidevelopment and they hope that the final outcome will be a tenable traffic plan for East Sacramento. They also realized that a victory in the courts would benefit all Sacramento communities with new development.
Q: If they won the ruling why is there a problem?
A: The Court ruled in their favor and the California State Supreme Court upheld that ruling.
The Court instructed that the McKinley Village EIR be re-circulated. This was a landmark ruling that said that the traffic snarl that might have been allowable under the City’s General Plan was definitely not allowable.
But the developers did not re-circulate the EIR. They and City tried to block its publication.
That tactic failed, so they are now attempting to rush through a “Revised Draft EIR for McKinley Village.” This hastily devised new draft does not comply with state law (CEQA) or the published ruling of the Court. It will not analyze traffic impacts or offer remedies.
Q: Why does the neighborhood need to act?
A: The ruling provides a chance for the neighborhood to redress the traffic study and to get significant mitigation. The developer and City’s action deny us the rule of law. Think about this as you drive down H Street any work night between 5 and 6 pm. Recall that the Court has ruled in your favor, and the Supreme Court upheld that ruling. If the law is enacted, the whole city benefits. Truly smart, realistic traffic planning will have to be enacted in all neighborhoods.
It is troubling to us that developers and their agents in city government have so little regard for the law of the land. We have to ask, do the developers and city officers intend obey the law or circumvent it? Do they consider themselves a special group not bound by the rules the rest of us recognize as valid and essential in a Democracy?
Contact the city today to voice your concern.
Please note that the correct E-mail address for Dana Mahaffey, Associate Planner at the City, receiving comments for the “Revised Draft EIR for McKinley Village” is firstname.lastname@example.org
Following is a reprint from the Sacramento Bee. When we know more information we will share. ESP
Sacramento’s fledgling McKinley Village development has hit a legal speed bump after an appellate court ruled that the city’s environmental studies overlooked potential impacts the development would create on traffic.
In a ruling late Monday, the 3rd District Court of Appeal threw out a portion of the environmental impact report, or EIR, prepared by city officials as part of their approval of the residential development. The court said the environmental report didn’t explain why the city thinks the project won’t cause major traffic problems. In particular, the court said it was concerned about traffic around 28th, 29th and 30th streets in midtown Sacramento, where many of the cars entering or leaving McKinley Village would coalesce.
The practical effect of the ruling is a matter of some dispute.
Stephen Cook, a lawyer for the preservationist group challenging the development, said Tuesday the ruling enables the group to seek a court injunction that would shut down construction “until the deficiency in the EIR is corrected, if it can be.” Cook, who represents a group called East Sacramento Partnership for a Livable City, said he’ll apply for an injunction in Sacramento Superior Court in a few weeks.
But City Attorney James Sanchez and co-developers Phil Angelides and Kevin Carson said the ruling creates relatively minor obstacles that should be easy to remedy. The development “will not be subject to delay,” Sanchez said.
Sanchez said the city merely needs to provide a better explanation of why the development won’t cause major traffic problems – or, if there are problems, how they can be addressed.
“It’s a technical fix that can be accomplished quickly,” said Angelides, a former state treasurer. “You’ve got a very narrow issue.” The appeals court dismissed other claims by East Sacramento Partnership, including allegations that residents of McKinley Village would face health problems caused by air pollution.
The ruling comes two years after developers broke ground on the football-shaped, 49-acre parcel sandwiched between the Capital City Freeway and an elevated railroad line. Angelides said 16 model homes have been completed and another 38 homes are under construction, with some homes already sold. A total of 336 homes are expected to be built.
The project is more or less cut off from surrounding areas and will have two entry and exit points to the rest of the city: a tunnel beneath the rail line that connects with C Street in East Sacramento and a bridge over the freeway connecting to midtown at 28th Street.
East Sacramento Partnership filed its suit under the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA. The law required the city to point out potential environmental problems and how they’d be fixed.