A newwon approval by only a small margin at this week’s Grass Valley City ( ) Council meeting.
According to a report, Mayor Ben Aguilar, Vice Mayor Jan Arbuckle, and Council member Bob Branstrom supported the, while council members Tom Ivy and Hilary Hodge voted against it.
Lance Lowe, the city’s principal planner, gave a presentation on the newand resort planned for 11425 McCourtney Road, located across the fairgrounds, which has its own .
The council vote is finalizing the approval, but a lot of preparation work needs to be completed before construction can begin. The opening date has not been set.
The 20-acreResort can be rented at $70 per night for 30 days or less and is subject to a transient occupancy tax.
“First and foremost, the property has to be annexed within the city limits,” said Lowe. “And that must be reviewed by (Local Agency Formation Commission)County, which approves the formation, dissolution or expansion in change of boundaries of cities and special districts.”
This review could take a few months since permits for construction require approval, and the applicant, Millennium Planning & Engineering, which represents the five local owners, must prove that the services can be provided within these limits.
The applicant also requested hookup to the city’s sewer and sanitation system. The city offered to reimburse Millennium for the expense of re-sizing the existing sewer line that runs from Brighton Street. This is to give more capacity for residents living on McCourtney Road, adjacent to the new, to connect to the city’s sewer system should they decide to do so at some point in the near future, Lowe added.
Hodge declared that, while the plans for theare appealing and include attractive amenities, affordable housing is what is needed.
“We have people living in a house three generations deep because housing is that scarce,” she said. “Given the proximity of the town and the location of this project, it’s really too bad it is not affordable housing.”
Hodge also commiserated with residents who are frustrated with current housing choices.
“It seems kind of crazy to me to welcome rich people’s portablehousing when there’s people who really don’t have access to housing in this community,” Hodge added.
While initially applauding the idea, Ivy also expressed doubts.
“You always try to protect landowner’s rights, but as you dig into the project, you see how big it is,” he said. “Grass Valley really has to be a large partner in order for this to move forward. Why didn’t (Millennium) do this on your own? Why get the city involved?”
Ivy said the project would be half the size if Grass Valley didn’t get involved. He expressed frustration that the project is predominantly reliant on the city’s water and wastewater services and its residents.
“I have a lot of questions about its economic viability moving forward,” he said. “It’s hard for me to reconcile right now.”
Rob Wood of Millennium said that many residents along McCourtney Road seemed eager to hook up with the city’s sewer system at an on-site public hearing in December.
Wood also touted the site as one where residents could shelter in place in case of a wildfire evacuation in part because of its gravel base. A fire suppression pond with a 2,000-gallon capacity and a draft hydrant hook-up is also planned.