19J Sustainable Communities Environmental Assessment – The Hodgson Company
The 19J Sustainable Communities Environmental Assessment (SCEA) project included removal of two existing commercial buildings totaling 9,780-sf, associated ancillary buildings, and concrete areas for the construction of a mixed use residential and commercial development. The project includes a 173-unit, 11-story, housing complex with approximately 7,000 sf of ground floor commercial and a second floor parking garage on the corner of 19th Street and J Street in the City of Sacramento. The project met the requirements of a Transit Priority Project and qualified for SB 375 Streamlining. Raney, instead of an Initial Study, prepared an SCEA Initial Study. Key environmental issues from the proposed project included air quality, cultural resources, geology and soils, hazards and hazardous materials, noise, public services, and transportation and circulation. For cultural resources, Raney coordinated with the City of Sacramento Community Development Department to create mitigation measures to ensure the quality of neighboring historic buildings would not be degraded during the construction process and that if historical/cultural resources were discovered that construction would be halted for a professional archeologist to examine the resources. Additionally, geology and soils were of concern based on the height of the proposed building. Transportation and Circulation was an issue of concern for the proposed project due to the impacts that would occur during construction. Raney coordinated with the City of Sacramento Community Development Department to formulate mitigation measures to help facilitate traffic / pedestrian flow during construction. Raney prepared the Public Review Draft SCEA Initial Study and the project has since been approved.
Aspen 1 Environmental Impact Report- City of Sacramento
The proposed Aspen 1 project includes a mixed use Planned Unit Development with a combination of multiple types of residential project and densities as well as a commercial center and commercial mixed use. Integrated throughout the PUD are parks and greenways as well as an urban farm. A 30+ acre strip along South Watt Avenue is located within the unincorporated area of the County of Sacramento and requires reorganization (annexation and related detachments) into the City of Sacramento. In order to develop the 232+ acre site, the necessary entitlements include a General Plan Amendment for the portion of the site to be annexed, a Pre-zoning for the portion of the site to be annexed, a Rezone to PUD and adoption of a Schematic Plan and PUD Guidelines, Large Lot Map, Tentative Subdivision Map with Subdivision Modifications, a Development Agreement, and an Inclusionary Housing Plan. Raney prepared the Draft EIR; addressing all CEQA topics, including traffic, air quality and climate change, hazards, flooding, and geology due to the former mining of the site, as well as the issues necessary for Sacramento County LAFCo to utilize the EIR as a Responsible Agency. For Aspen-1 EIR, Raney included a separate Reorganization Chapter in the EIR to facilitate LAFCo’s use of the EIR for just a small portion of the proposed project. Because of the site’s history as a former mining site, Raney coordinated with the City Engineer to create mitigation measures to address the potential geological hazards associated with unstable soil conditions including expansive soils and subsidence that could potentially expose people to hazards. Raney coordinated with SMAQMD, City of Sacramento Engineer, and the Community Development Department to develop mitigation measures to address the impacts related to increases in health risks and increases in PM10 and PM2.5 emissions from diesel-exhaust during construction. Additionally, mitigation measures were created to address the impacts related to the loss of Swainson’s hawk and other raptor habitats due to on-site construction. The environmental document was certified and the project was approved.
Johnson Rancho Environmental Impact Report and Planning Services – City of Wheatland
The proposed Johnson Rancho EIR project was primarily composed of three separate properties – the Johnson Rancho property, the Bear River Hop Farm property, and the Dave Browne property. Requested entitlements included annexation, General Plan amendment, and pre-zone. The proposed project includes the development of up to approximately 13,141 residential lots, varying from Very Low Density Residential to High Density Residential, on approximately 4,069 acres located within Yuba County. In addition, development of the project includes other land uses, such as Employment / Office, Commercial, Civic Center, Elementary and Middle Schools, Parks and Open Space, and a potential hospital.
During the course of the project, Raney served as both the environmental consultant and planning consultant for the City of Wheatland. As the planning consultant, Raney worked with the project applicant to design preliminary standards and guidelines for future on-site development, as well as assisting with the annexation process. As the environmental consultant, Raney ensured all CEQA related issues were resolved and thoroughly evaluated. The Johnson Rancho project had significant historical and biological resources on the site, which required Raney to provide comprehensive and intricate analyses to mitigate CEQA issues that could potentially arise. Additionally, given the project’s close proximity to Beale Air Force Base, the EIR included analysis of the proposed project’s compatibility with the Beale Air Force Base Land Use Compatibility Plan.
The EIR also included components necessary for Yuba County LAFCo action as a responsible agency. Raney prepared the Draft and Final EIRs, the staff reports for the Planning Commission and City Council, and negotiated a Development Agreement on behalf of the City. The EIR has since been certified and the project approved. Upon certification, Raney additionally prepared the application to LAFCo, including the Plan for Services, on behalf of the City, and negotiated a Master Tax Sharing Agreement with Yuba County to facilitate the LAFCo review. Both the Tax Sharing Agreement and LAFCo annexation have been approved.
Eastview Specific Plan Environmental Impact Report – City of Galt
The Eastview Specific Plan project consists of a mixed residential development, including parks, open space, schools, minor commercial and public facilities, and associated infrastructure on approximately 337 acres. Requested entitlements included Annexation, Pre-zoning, General Plan Amendment, Specific Plan Approval, Vesting Tentative Map(s), and creation of a Mello-Roos or other special financing district. Raney, under contract with the City of Galt, prepared an EIR to address the potential environmental impacts associated with the proposed project and provide associated planning services. Potential environmental impacts analyzed in the EIR include aesthetics, air quality and greenhouse gas emissions, biological resources, cultural resources, geology and soils, hydrology and water quality, land use and planning, agricultural and forestry resources, noise, population and housing, public services and utilities, and transportation and circulation. Raney needed to analyze possible hazard issues from the project site’s history of being used as agriculture land with possible soil contamination. The Specific Plan and Annexation area included both participating and non-participating properties. The EIR addressed the non-participating properties at a program-level while a project-level analysis was prepared for the Liberty Ranch portion of the project. The EIR was further prepared to serve Sacramento County LAFCo at the time of processing the annexation. Raney and staff had been in close coordination with LAFCo staff regarding the annexation boundaries, process and EIR. In addition, Raney assisted City staff with application routing, agency coordination, public outreach, preparation of staff reports, and project management. Both the project has been approved and the EIR has been certified. It should be noted that Raney is currently under contract to prepare and process the annexation application for submittal to LAFCo.