- The California Employment Development Department (EDD) reported a decrease in San Diego’s unemployment rate from 4.5 percent in April to 4.2 percent in May.
- The new 24 Hour Fitness in Westfield North County mall will hold a grand opening event on Saturday, June 25, 2016, 9:00 a.m., to 3:00 p.m. The community is invited to this free celebration, which includes club tours, prize drawings, group training demonstrations, innovative group exercise studio classes and more. The new club adds a much-desired fitness lifestyle component to the shopping complex.
- The current San Diego Visitor Guide included a free editorial page devoted to Escondido’s wineries as well as a plug for our tourism office, “Visit Escondido” (see attached).
Major Projects Update
Commercial / Office:
- Escondido Research and Technology Center – East (ERTC) (Developer: James McCann) – No change from the following update reported last week: This is a 72,000 square foot medical office building proposed on the east side of Citracado Parkway across from Palomar Medical Center located at 2130 Citracado Parkway. A grading permit has been issued by the Engineering Division. Building plans have been submitted for plan check. The applicant has recently requested to install a temporary paved parking lot in this area to serve the hospital. A grading plan for the temporary parking lot is close to approval.
- Escondido Research and Technology Center – West (ERTC) (Developer: James McCann) – No change from the following update reported last week: This is a 144,000 sq. ft. development involving two medical office buildings proposed on the west side of Citracado Parkway across from Palomar Medical Center located at 2097 – 2175 Citracado Parkway. A grading permit has been issued by the Engineering Division. Esgil and the Planning Division have approved the building plans. A fee deferral agreement has been signed and the building permit is ready to issue when requested. A tentative parcel map (TPM) for office condominiums is in process to allow the sale of individual office suites to medical providers. Conditions of approval for the TPM are being finalized and approval is expected soon.
- Centerpointe 78 Commercial (Developer: Lars Andersen, Pacific Development) – This project is a 45,650 sq. ft. supermarket and restaurant located at 925 N. Broadway. The project was approved by the City Council on December 9, 2015. Demolition of the former auto dealership building started on June 20, 2016. The developer’s submittal of grading and building plans is expected soon.
- Westfield Theater (Developer: Kim Brewer, Westfield) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 10-auditorium movie theater totaling 57,600 sq. ft. located on the north side of the Westfield Mall. The project was approved by the City Council on November 4, 2015.
- Felicita Development, LLC (Developer: Katherine Park, Creative Design Associates) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 140-unit hotel, and a gas station or office/residential care facility at the southeast corner of Felicita Rd. and Gamble Lane. The applicant and staff met with the architect to discuss building elevations, 5-story height limitations and site design issues given the existing wetland constraints on the property. Additional technical analysis and coordination is needed to address traffic, biology, water and sewer service, geotechnical and storm water concerns, along with a market study for the proposed uses. The applicant met with the wild life agencies and is responding to technical studies needed to complete the application. Tribal consultations are underway.
- Springhill Suites (Developer: Raj Patel, San Bernardino Hospitality LLC) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 105-suite hotel totaling 73,300 sq. ft. located at 200 La Terraza Drive involving 4 stories, a small conference room and an enlarged lobby for serving continental breakfast. A revised set of grading plans have been approved and grading has begun for the parking lot on the adjacent office property which shares a driveway access. Landscaping plans were submitted for review, and department comments are being finalized. Building plans are nearing approval for construction.
- BMW Dealership (Developer: Lyle Hutson) – No change from the following update reported last week: A Precise Plan application to expand the existing dealership showroom an additional approximately 4,000 square feet and enhance the building façade at 1557 Auto Park Way was approved by the Planning Commission on October 13, 2015. The project is under construction.
- Escondido Auto Park Association (Developer: Tim Brecht, Escondido Auto Park Association) – The association is proposing to upgrade the existing electronic message sign along I-15. An application for a new regional market sign and an amendment to the Sign Ordinance to increase the allowable display area for a regional market sign was submitted to the Planning Division on May 6, 2016. The proposed sign would be located in the same location as the existing sign at a slightly lower height (73.5 feet) with approximately the same overall dimensions. Planning staff is developing language for the proposed amendment to the City’s Sign Ordinance. Public hearings to review the proposal are expected to start next month.
- Ford-Hyundai Dealership Expansion (Developer: Neil E. Sander, Dynamic Engineering) – No change from the following update reported last week: An expansion involving approximately 13,000 sq. ft. of showroom buildings and 6,700 sq. ft. wash/detail building at 1717-1919 Auto Park Way was approved by the Planning Commission on June 23, 2015. Grading has commenced, the sign plans have been approved, and the building permit for the Ford dealership has been issued.
- Trafalgar Square – Aldi Market (Developer: Charlie Mallon) – No change from the following update reported last week: This renovation of the Trafalgar Square shopping center includes demolition of the northern shop building and the northern portion of the western building to prepare a site for the construction of an 18,088 square foot, freestanding building for Aldi Market. The plot plan was approved by the Planning Division in June of 2015. Grading and landscape plans have also been approved and grading has commenced on the site. Issuance of the building permit has been withheld pending FEMA approval of a conditional letter of map revision (CLOMR) for the grading design that elevates the building above the flood limits for the adjacent Escondido Creek. FEMA approval was received on May 4, 2016, and all city departments have now authorized issuance of the building permit.
- Escondido Disposal Inc. (Developer: Steve South, EDI) – No change from the following update reported last week: The CUP modification to expand the existing facility was approved by the Planning Commission on August 25, 2015. The project is under construction and the applicant now is working with Building, Fire and Engineering staff on proposed site and building revisions. Revisions to the grading plan have been approved by Engineering.
- StorQuest (Developer: The William Warren Group, Inc.) – This proposed project at 220 W. Mission Avenue involves a 102,500 sq. ft. development with 4-stories, 3 in-line shops and a small office in conjunction with a public storage facility. The applicant has been working with staff to modify the vehicle circulation pattern and parking at the front of the building and recently submitted revised plans for review. Planning staff issued a “Letter of Completeness” for the project application last week.
- Victory Industrial Development (Developer: Scott Merry, Badiee Development) – This project involves two industrial buildings totaling 91,000 sq. ft. (one building 55,500 sq. ft., second building 35,500 sq. ft.) located at 2005 Harmony Grove Road and a zone change from residential to Planned Industrial consistent with the updated General Plan. Design review has been completed and the project is progressing through the environmental review phase. Public review of the proposed Mitigated Negative Declaration started on June 22, 2016.
- Micro-Filtration Reverse Osmosis (Developer: City of Escondido Utilities Department) – No change from the following update reported last week: The proposed project involves a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) for the development of a new city facility at 2512 E. Washington Avenue to provide advanced treatment for Title 22 quality recycled water produced at the City of Escondido’s Hale Avenue Resource Recovery Facility (HARRF) for agricultural uses. The facility would be sized for a total production capacity of 2.0 million gallons per day (mgd) and consists of two separate buildings (one building 14,440 sq. ft., second building 21,775 sq. ft.) that would contain a variety of equipment, pumps, electrical, control and storage rooms. Underground storage tanks (90,000 gallon feed tank, 163,000 gallon inter-process tank, and a 970,000 gallon product storage tank) are also included. Public environmental review commenced concluded on April 6, 2016. The Planning Commission recommended denial of the proposed Conditional Use Permit on April 26, 2016. The Utilities Department filed an appeal of that decision with the City Clerk. On May 25, 2016, the City Council voted to delay the appeal hearing indefinitely to allow staff additional time to consider alternative site and mitigation opportunities.
- Wastewater Collections Yard Expansion (Developer: City of Escondido Utilities Department) – No change from the following update reported last week: The project involves development of 1.8 acres of a larger, approximately 15.4-acre site for the construction of a new wastewater collections yard and maintenance facility for the City’s Hale Avenue Resource Recovery Facility (HARRF) at 1521 S. Hale Avenue. The proposed facilities will consist of three separate pre-fabricated metal buildings 3,735 sq. ft. - 5,670 sq. ft. for collections; work bays and workshops for regular maintenance of vehicles and equipment. The project would require the processing of a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) and rezone. The Planning Commission held a public hearing and recommended approval on May 10, 2016. It was approved by the City Council on June 15, 2016.
- Escondido Self-Storage Facility (Developer: Anna-Lisa Armanino, Brandywine Homes, Inc.) – A modification to a Master and Precise Development Plan for revisions to the design of a previously approved, but not yet constructed, self-storage facility with direct access to Brotherton Road near the intersection with Cranston Drive. The proposed project was submitted on May 11, 2016, and is currently being reviewed by Planning, Engineering, Fire and Utilities staff. The project proposes approximately 77,500 SF of storage area in two buildings. The larger building is two stories over a basement with all interior loading. The smaller building is one-story with some exterior roll-up doors. The project site is also part of a five-lot Tentative Map for four residential lots and one commercial lot (Tract 900) that is concurrently being processed for an extension of time.
- John Paul the Great Catholic University (Developer: Kevin Meziere, John Paul the Great Catholic University) – No change from the following update reported last week: A Conditional Use Permit to expand the campus and student enrollment at 155 W. Grand Avenue was approved by the Planning Commission on December 8, 2015. The proposal includes improvements to the former H. Johnson Building at 131 S. Broadway for studio and classroom space, and the former bank at 200 W. Grand Avenue for administrative offices and a student resource center. The proposed expansion would also increase the student enrollment from 300 to 1,200 students over the next several years.
- Calvin Christian Middle/High School (Developer: Brent Cooper) – No change from the following update reported last week: The project is an expansion involving a 15,500 SF auditorium, multi-use conference center, classrooms, terraces and walkways located at 2000 N. Broadway. The grading plans have been approved and a building permit was issued on April 11, 2016. Construction is underway.
- Escondido United Reformed Church (Developer: Brent Cooper) – No change from the following update reported last week: The project is an expansion for a phased, multi-year, master construction/development plan for a new 12,250 SF two-story sanctuary, conversion of existing buildings to a social hall, demolition of an existing social hall/classroom building (approx. 4,620 SF) and construction of approximately 5,250 SF for a nursery, multi-purpose room, classrooms for Sunday school at 1864 N. Broadway. Revised architectural plans were unanimously approved by the Planning Commission on June 14, 2016.
- Oak Creek (Developer: Jason Han, New Urban West) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 65-unit single family development located at the southeastern corner of Felicita Road and Hamilton Lane approved by the City Council in 2015. The LAFCO Board unanimously approved the annexation on October 5, 2015, and the annexation has been recorded. No grading or improvement plans have been submitted by the developer at this time.
- Amanda Estates (Developer: Jason Han, New Urban West) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 22-unit single family development on Amanda Lane approved by the City Council in 2015. The LAFCO Board approved the reorganization (annexation) at their meeting on August 3, 2015, and the annexation has been recorded. No grading or improvement plans have been submitted by the developer at this time.
- Pradera (Developer: Moses Kim, Lennar Homes) – This project consists of a 70-unit single family development located at the northeastern corner of Ash Street and Lehner Avenue. The developer has obtained building permits for four phases involving 36 homes and those phases are under construction. Homebuyer interest in the product remains high and sales are progressing. The last two final maps for the project (Streets A and B) were approved by the City Council on June 15, 2016.
- Lexington (Zenner) (Developer: Eric Johnston, KB Homes) - The project is a 40-unit, single-family development at the northeastern corner of Lehner Avenue and Vista Avenue. The applicant has submitted the final map, improvement plans and grading plans for staff review and approval. Engineering staff is working with the applicant to address storm drain issues. The grading and building permits for the three model homes on the eastern side of Ash Street have been issued and construction is underway.
- Stella Park Condominiums (Developer: Edward Kaen, ETP, LLC) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 65-unit, three-story townhome Planned Development located at 2516 S. Escondido Blvd. The project includes three separate recreation areas for residents. The City Council approved the project on April 27, 2016. No grading or improvement plans have been submitted by the developer at this time.
- Wohlford (Developer: Jack Henthorne) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 55-unit single family development located on Bear Valley Parkway east of Encino Drive. A Specific Alignment Plan for Bear Valley Parkway detailing the proposed roadway design is under review. The EIR consultant and staff have reviewed the applicant’s technical reports and provided comments for revisions. Bi-weekly status meetings have commenced as the Draft EIR gets underway.
- Latitude II (Developer: Peter Zak, Lyon/NCA) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 112-unit multi-family development, located at the northeastern corner of Centre City Parkway and Washington Avenue, and approved by the City Council on August 19, 2015. A Final Subdivision Map has been submitted for review. The applicant has submitted a boundary adjustment for a property exchange with the adjacent motel owner. Grading and building plans are nearing approval.
- Canyon Grove Estates Tract 932 (Developer: John Vance, Shea Homes) - This project is a 179-lot single family residential development on the north side of Vista Avenue east of Conway Drive. The final architectural design and landscaping plans for the Precise Plan application were approved by the Planning Commission on June 14, 2016. A grading permit has been issued and grading is underway. Plans for the construction of eight model homes were submitted on May 18 and are being reviewed by staff. The applicant is coordinating the plan review for off-site street improvements on Ash Street with the County’s Department of Public Works.
- Safari Highlands (Developer: Jeb Hall, Concordia Homes) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 550-unit single family development located east of the Rancho San Pasqual community and north of the San Diego Safari Park. The project involves 1,100 acres including annexation and Sphere of Influence update for a master planned community with parks, trails, recreation center, fire station, open space, on-site sewer facility for treating a portion of the on-site wastewater for irrigation purposes. Planning and Engineering extensions of staff have been funded by the applicant and retained to assist the City in processing the project. Staff met with a representative of the Fish and Wildlife Department to discuss the project. Other outreach efforts have included City of San Diego, San Diego Zoo Safari Park representatives, public agencies and surrounding residents. The City Council approved the consultant contract for preparing the EIR on March 23, 2016. The consultant, Michael Baker International, has now been authorized to start work on the EIR. More information about this project is on line at: http://www.escondido.org/safari-highlands-ranch-specific-plan.aspx
- High Pointe Tract 693-J (Developer: Russell Schaeffer, True Life Communities) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a custom-home development with 39 estate lots accessed from Mesa Rock Road. Staff has prepared a bond and fee letter based on the proposed grading and landscape plans, and has sent it to the applicant.
- Del Prado (Developer: Kerry Garza, Touchstone Communities) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a 113-unit townhome-style Planned Development located at the southwestern corner of Brotherton Road and the Centre City Parkway frontage road. The project includes a recreational facility, pool, and open space areas. Staff worked through various site design and utility issues with the applicant prior to scheduling the project for a public hearing. The City Council approved the project on May 11, 2016. No grading or improvement plans have been submitted by the developer at this time.
- Solutions for Change (Developer: Solutions for Change) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a Planned Development application for 33 multi-family units of affordable housing. It was approved by the City Council on November 18, 2015. Building plans have been approved and the building permit has been issued.
- 701 San Pasqual Valley Rd (Developer: Bob Stewart) –This project is a 19-unit single family development located at 1201 E. 5th Avenue (formerly Tract 898) on 7.2 acres. The application is under review and a letter detailing additional comments and submittal requirements was forwarded to the applicant. Additional information and revised plans were submitted to the Planning Division on June 13, 2016.
- Veterans Village (Developer: Veterans Village of San Diego) – No change from the following update reported last week: This project is a mixed-use development involving a 54-unit affordable multi-family residential apartment project for military veterans and their families. It includes on-site administration office, business center, club house and other support spaces for the residents; and a small commercial component to support training opportunities offered at the facility at 1556 S. Escondido Boulevard. Building plans have been submitted for review and comment; the grading plans and landscaping plans have been approved.
- Escondido Gateway (Developer: Greg Waite, Integral Communities) – This project is a mixed-use development involving 126 residential units within three, 4-5 story buildings with indoor and outdoor recreational areas and an opportunity for a small (1,000 sq. ft.) commercial/flex space on 2.6 acres (48 dwelling units/acre) located at 700 W. Grand Avenue (former Police Station) across the street from the Escondido Transit Center. Plans were submitted for the project involving a Specific Plan Amendment, Tentative Map, Planned Development and Development Agreement. The Draft Mitigated Negative Declaration has been issued and a 20-day public review period started on June 22, 2016.
- City Plaza (Developer: Charlie Zhang, Zion Enterprises) – No change from the following update reported last week: This long-dormant, partially constructed mixed-use development at the southeastern corner of South Escondido Boulevard and Third Avenue now has new ownership. The new owners have met with city staff and indicated they quickly plan to start constructing the 65-unit apartment project as originally approved. The project consists of a three-story building with 51,200 SF of residential area and 4,100 SF of commercial area and two levels of parking. The building permits will need to be reissued and the applicant is coordinating that process with the Building Official. Structural engineering information was submitted to the Building Division on May 8.
- The Building Division issued 72 permits for the week with a total valuation of $1,314,260.
- 24 photovoltaic permits were issued for the week. The Building Division has issued 640 solar permits this year compared to 512 issued for the same time last year.
- The Building Department staff had another busy week. Inspectors averaged 42 inspections per day with 58 inspections on Monday and 30 inspections on Friday. Our building counter staff was also busy, averaging 32 counter sign in’s per day and 23 on Friday. 43 customers came to the building counter on Wednesday.
- The Building Division has issued 44 single family dwelling permits this year with valuations of $12,012,943 compared to 11 permits issued with valuations of $2,218,379 for the same time last year.
- Permits were issued for 3 new single-family dwelling models for KB Homes.
- Permits were issued for a new single- family dwelling at 2400 Kauana Loa Dr.
- Demolition permits were issued for the demolition of the old Toyota dealership at 999 N Broadway.
- Plans were submitted to the Building Division for 2-unit, 3-unit and 4-unit apartment buildings at 917 W Lincoln Ave.
- A notice was posted at the building counter requesting that contractors present any residential solar revisions to the building inspector at the time of inspection in lieu of submitting revisions at the building counter. This change of policy was implemented due to the increase and frequency of solar revisions.
- As of June 20, 2016, the total number of open code enforcement cases is 418 cases. During the prior week, 96 new cases were opened, and 73 cases were closed, with a backlog of an additional 16 cases not yet opened for assignment and investigation.
- There were 98 illegal signs confiscated during the weekend.
- Last week, the Business License Division issued 19 new licenses and received 32 new applications, in addition to 144 renewals.
- Grape Day Park Playground:The irrigation lines have been tested. The arch bridge has been constructed. Amended soil is being placed in the landscape areas. Playground concrete borders and mow strips are being place. The repair efforts are completed on the Vinehenge project.
- Bear Valley Parkway between Boyle Avenue and San Pasqual Valley Road (County Project): Landscape soil amendment has started. Planting is ongoing and is set to be completed by the first week of July. Birch Avenue is still closed at Bear Valley Parkway for East/West travel. The traffic signal for the Boyle Avenue intersection has been installed with activation is set for the first week in July.
- 2412 South Escondido Boulevard:No changes from the following update reported last week: A close out punch list for the project has been given to the contractor. This project is nearing completion with the first of three building released for occupancy.
- Pradera - Lennar Communities:Three homes on “D” street have been released. SDG&E has energized Phase 1 for “D” street. Water main installation will be starting on “B” Street. “A” Street improvements plans have been approved for construction. This is last section for this development.
- Lexington Model Homes - KB Homes:The contractor is continuing to grade the model home site. Offsite improvements have been started along Ash Street between Vista Avenue and Lehner Avenue. The north bound travel lane will be closed for the next two weeks. Detour signs and electronic message boards are in place to aid the local residents that are affected by the closure.
- Rincon del Diablo 8” & 12” Water Main Construction:No changes from the following update reported last week: The contractor has completed all surface restoration along the project route. The section of new water main in the City’s jurisdiction has been accepted and put into service. The testing of the remaining water main is continuing this week.
- Tract 932 - Canyon Grove Shea Homes Community:The contractor is continuing the mass grading for the pads. Storm drain pipe along with storm drain curb inlets are being constructed on site. Work has begun for the offsite improvements along Ash Street between Vista Avenue and Hubbard Avenue. Partial roadway lane closure will be in place on this section of roadway. Coordination with the developers is being monitored to ensure public safety and access is provided. Partial closure is approved for this work during the summer recess for school which reopens on August 29th.
- San Diego Gas & Electric gas main replacement Ash Street:No changes from the following update reported last week: Permanent road surface repairs have started and completion of the project is expected very soon
Future Capital Improvements:
- Traffic Signal Modifications at Escondido Blvd and Felicita Avenue:Staff initiated design of this project to install new traffic signal poles at the intersection of Escondido Blvd. and Felicita Avenue. Improvements include protected left turns for both north/southbound Escondido Blvd vehicles, updated pedestrian ramps as required, and replacement of existing crosswalk striping with high visibility striping
- Kit Carson Park Lighting Project:Plans for this project to update and provide lighting in the park’s parking lots are nearing 100%. Staff is working with the project consultant to make all revisions to address previously provided plan review comments. Staff is also working to prepare front end specifications for the project, and review the technical specifications provided by the consultant.
- FY 15/16 Street Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project:The City has a fully executed contract with the awarded bidder. Staff is working to schedule a preconstruction meeting with the contractor to initiate construction. Construction is anticipated to start in Maintenance Zone Central South which is bordered on 5th Avenue to the north, Centre City Parkway to the west, Encino Avenue to the east and Citracado Parkway to the south within the next 2-3 weeks, and last over summer.
- On 6/13/2016, Officer Bellamy attempted to stop a vehicle for a vehicle code violation near the intersection of Escondido Blvd. and Lincoln Ave. The driver failed to stop and drove at a slow speed to the intersection of Escondido Blvd. and El Norte Pkwy. The driver stopped the car and fled into an apartment complex in the 1200 of N. Escondido Blvd. The vehicle was an unreported stolen vehicle from San Diego. During the course of the investigation, the officers discovered the identity of the driver. The investigation is ongoing.
- On 6/13/2016, Officer Guerrero attempted to stop a vehicle for a vehicle code violation. The driver of the vehicle failed to yield and lead officers on a pursuit. The pursuit headed south on I-15. The suspect exited West Bernardo Dr. in San Diego and stopped the vehicle. As the driver attempted to get out of the vehicle, it rolled back into Officer Guerrero’s police vehicle. No officers or suspects were injured as a result of the collision. The driver and two passengers were detained without further incident. The driver of the vehicle was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for possession of a stolen vehicle and violation of a restraining order. An officer from the San Diego Police Department investigated the collision.
- On 6/15/2016, officers responded to the intersection of Felicita Ave. and Maple St. to assist the Fire Department with a subject possibly having a seizure. When officers arrived on scene they found the subject in his vehicle screaming and acting irrational. The subject made statements about taking acid. Officers and fire personnel were able to extract the subject from his vehicle. Fire personnel transported the subject to Palomar Medical Center for treatment.
- On 6/15/2016, officers were dispatched to 125 W. Mission Ave. regarding a report of a person wanting to commit suicide. The subject stated he wanted to kill himself and was not willing to go to the hospital for treatment. The subject threatened to fight the officers if they attempted to take him into protective custody. After a long negotiation, the subject still refused to cooperate and the officers were left with no other course of action but to physically place the subject into custody. The officers used the lowest level of force available to accomplish the goal. The subject was taken to the floor and given a chemical restraint by Fire Department personnel. The subject was not injured during the incident.
- On 6/17/2016, officers responded to Macy’s, 200 E. Via Rancho Pkwy, regarding a subject who made a statement about being in possession of a handgun. Officers arrived and located two male adults who matched the description. One person was found to be in possession of a stolen .38 caliber revolver. The subject was also in possession of approximately 100 Xanax pills. The subject was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for possession of a stolen firearm and possession of an illegal substance.
- On 6/18/2016 16-07170, Officers Putulowski and Spinos located a stolen Chevy Blazer at Grand Ave. and Rose St. The driver and sole occupant of the vehicle was detained without incident. The driver had numerous prior arrests for being in possession of a stolen vehicle. The suspect was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for possession of a stolen vehicle and probation violation.
- On 6/13/2016, Chief Carter and Captain Kogler attended the FIT & Girls Rock Recognition Ceremony. The event was held in the Police Department’s Community Room and had over 100 friends and family in attendance. The event recognized young men and women who have made the choice to walk away from bad influences and are now working to be successful in their personal and academic goals.
The Escondido Fire Department has sent two Type 3 Brush Engines and a Battalion Chief to the Border Fire in Potrero.