Public Input Wanted on Proposed Sunset Area Plan and Placer Ranch Specific Plan

Placer County, CA  |  By Scott Sandow, Placer County

AUBURN, CA (MPG) - Members of the community are invited to give feedback on draft environmental impact report for the proposed Sunset Area Plan and Placer Ranch Specific Plan through Feb. 22, 2019, as Placer County moves forward with its vision for south Placer to create a vibrant new community and promote economic development and job growth in the region.

The Sunset Area is an 8,497-acre area in unincorporated Placer County between the cities of Roseville, Rocklin and Lincoln. Placer Ranch is 2,213 acres of land, located entirely within the Sunset Area Plan.

The goal of the Sunset Area Plan is to re-envision and re-brand the Sunset Area to create a unique employment, entertainment and education center that would provide regional benefit and create high-wage jobs for residents of nearby cities and unincorporated areas.

Placer County’s role is to create a zoning ordinance for the Sunset Area Plan, which includes new use allowances and flexible development standards.

The proposed plan includes 300 acres of land to be dedicated to California State University, Sacramento for a possible satellite campus. At build-out, the school may support as many as 25,000 Sac State students. Sierra College plans to locate a transfer center on the site to serve an additional 5,000 students. Ultimately, it’s envisioned that students will be able to begin their studies at Sierra College and complete four-year degrees at the same Placer campus.

The Sunset Area Plan and Placer Ranch Specific Plan are intended to create a major job center, catalyzed by proximity to the university campus.

“This area of south Placer County has the potential to serve as a beacon of economic prosperity and higher education for the entire region,” said District 1 Supervisor Jack Duran.

The Sunset Area Plan is a county regulatory document that establishes new land use designations and zoning districts that provide a framework for future land development. It includes land use and zoning changes that would allow land use types including innovation center, general commercial, entertainment mixed-use, business park, eco-industrial and light industrial. Land use and zoning changes proposed in the Sunset Area Plan would also allow for workforce housing aimed at supporting the employment-generating uses.

The Placer Ranch Specific Plan is a development project that includes approximately 8.5 million square feet of commercial, employment and university-related, non-residential use; of which 4.5 million square feet would be located in a campus park district that would include office, research and development, light industrial and commercial uses.

It also proposes about 5,600 homes in a variety of density ranges; elementary and middle schools; approximately 330 acres of open space and parks; a town center with a vibrant, high-density residential and commercial, mixed-use area; and a bike and trail network that ties into existing trails and connects the university campus with the schools, parks and neighborhoods.

Draft environmental impact reports for the Sunset Area Plan and Placer Ranch Specific Plan will be available for review until Feb. 22. The draft environmental impact reports provide a program-level analysis of the Sunset Area Plan and a project-level analysis of the Placer Ranch Specific Plan.

The Placer County Planning Commission will conduct a public meeting on the draft EIR Feb. 14 at the Placer County Community Development Resources Agency, 3091 County Center Drive, Suite 190, in Auburn. The planning commission agenda will be available online beginning Feb. 7 here.

The public meeting will include a presentation by county planning staff, who will provide the Planning Commission and community members with an overview of the plans and the draft EIR and an opportunity to offer input.

The draft EIR is available for public review during normal business hours at the Placer County Libraries in Roseville, Rocklin, and Lincoln; the Placer County Community Development Resource Agency offices at 3091 County Center Drive, Auburn; and at the Placer County Clerk’s Office at 2954 Richardson Drive, Auburn. It’s also available online at https://www.placer.ca.gov/departments/communitydevelopment/envcoordsvcs/eir/sunsetarea-placerranch

For comments and questions regarding the project, please contact principal planner Crystal Jacobsen at cjacobsen@placer.ca.gov or call 530-745-3000.