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For Immediate Release

Permit Sonoma to hold meeting seeking public comment on Springs Specific Plan draft environmental report

SANTA ROSA, CA | June 13, 2022

Permit Sonoma, Sonoma County’s planning agency, announced that it will seek public comments on a draft Environmental Impact Report for the Springs Specific Plan at a virtual public hearing Thursday, June 16 at 1 PM

The draft Environmental Impact Report evaluates the Springs Specific Plan through the lens of the California Environmental Quality Act and finds that implementation of the project could result in significant and unavoidable impacts related to cultural resources, transportation and wildfire.

The Planning Commission and Permit Sonoma staff invite the public to share comments on the adequacy and accuracy of the draft report. The Planning Commission will not respond to any of the comments or take action on the project at this hearing. Certification of the final Environmental Impact Report will be considered at a later hearing which will be promoted in advance.

The draft report also identifies mitigation measures and alternatives such as processes to protect cultural and tribal resources, enhancing pedestrian safety on Highway 12, and placing utilities underground that would avoid or reduce the impacts of the project.

“I encourage members of the public to read through the draft report and provide their feedback,” said Supervisor Susan Gorin, whose First District encompasses the Springs Specific Plan area. “This has been a long process, and we are nearing the finish line. In order to really hone in on the community’s vision for the future growth, development, and community resources within the Springs area, we need residents and businesses to engage in this part of the process. ”

The draft Springs Specific Plan is designed to foster a vibrant, multimodal community with increased opportunities for housing and improvements for pedestrians, bicyclists and transit. 

The Springs Specific Plan pertains to the area along the Highway 12 corridor between Verano Avenue and Agua Caliente Road in Sonoma Valley. The area is approximately 180 acres, contains around 480 lots and is home to approximately 1,800 people. When fully implemented, the plan could lead to an additional 706 dwelling units, 120 hotel rooms and up to 276,903 square feet of commercial, office, hotel, recreation and non-residential uses. The draft plan proposes design guidelines, development standards, and updated zoning designations to implement the plan.

The plan incorporates feedback from more than 20 community workshops, public surveys and stakeholder meetings held from 2016 to 2019. This planning process developed eight plan objectives:

  1. Recognize and promote the springs commercial corridor as a mixed-use “downtown” serving the larger Springs community
  2. Develop a centrally located community plaza
  3. Celebrate the unique, multi-cultural identity of the Springs
  4. Increase affordable, workforce and mixed-use housing
  5. Improve the pedestrian, bicycle and transit network
  6. Ensure an adequate parking supply
  7. Address community safety
  8. Create and connect to more parks and open space

The draft Environmental Impact Report is available for an extended public review period of 60 days, which began on May 18 and will end July 19, 2022.

In addition to the hearing, written comments may be submitted a variety of ways before 5 PM on July 19, including by email at springsspecificplan@sonoma-county.org, by fax at (707) 565-1103 and by mail to Doug Bush, Permit Sonoma, 2550 Ventura Ave., Santa Rosa, California 95403.

For more information visit the Springs Specific Plan project page.

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Media Contact:Bradley Dunn, Policy ManagerBradley.Dunn@sonoma-county.org(707) 321-05022550 Ventura Ave.Santa Rosa, CA 95403

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