FEATURED THIS WEEK
Fencing Tournament at East Valley Community Center
The City and the San Diego Fencing Center hosted the National Super Youth Circuit Fencing Tournament at the East Valley Community Center last week. This tournament was held for children between the ages of 10 and 14 and drew a crowd of over 600 participants and their families to Escondido and the surrounding area. This was the second fencing tournament the EVCC has hosted and the San Diego Fencing Center is already working with staff to organize another tournament later this year.
Escondido Police and School Officials for School Safety
In the wake of the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Escondido police and school officials announced a collaborative effort to ensure the safety of Escondido campuses. This includes public, private, and faith based schools. Virtually every aspect of school safety is being re-evaluated. This includes physical site security measures (fencing, gates, doors, and controlled access points), training, adding a School Resource Officer, and encouraging the reporting of suspicious activity.
Report It! App Tutorial Video
A handy tutorial video is now available for Escondido’s Report It app. This app is an efficient way to report problems that need to be addressed in our City. Watch a short tutorial video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1g0xParNQE
Major Projects Update
The following major projects are being reviewed and coordinated by Planning, Engineering, Fire, Building and Utilities. The list of projects below encompasses recent project updates and/or milestones from last week. A more complete list and description of active or pending projects can be viewed here.
Commercial / Office:
- Escondido Research and Technology Center (ERTC) – West (Developer: James McCann) – A plan for a new two-story, 57,000 SF, 52-bed Palomar Rehabilitation Institute was submitted as a Plot Plan on July 31, 2017. The Plot Plan approval letter was issued on February 7, 2018. Engineering is reviewing the second plan check for grading. Planning issued comments on the grading and landscape plans two weeks ago. The applicant is meeting this week with Rincon MWD staff to discuss water service issues.
- Escondido Research and Technology Center (ERTC) – PPH (Developer: Palomar Health) 2185 Citracado Parkway – A plan for a new two-story 4,220 SF Crisis Stabilization Unit for Palomar Hospital adjacent to the western side of the hospital was submitted on March 7, 2018. Utilities comments have been provided and Fire comments will be issued soon. Rincon MWD is coordinating a fire flow test with the applicant this week.
- Escondido Self-Storage Facility (Developer: Brandywine Homes, Inc.) 2319 Cranston Dr. – A revised grading plan was submitted on February 22, 2018. The applicant had intended to pull permits this month.
- North American Self-Storage (Developer: Russ Colvin) 852 S. Metcalf – A revised plot plan has been approved and revised building plans were submitted into plan check on January 17, 2018. Esgil approved the building plans on April 3, 2018. Planning and Fire have issued comments on the building plans. Engineering has approved the grading plan for the revised project and is awaiting posting of the improvement bonds prior to authorizing issuance of the building permit.
- Micro-Filtration Reverse Osmosis (Developer: City of Escondido Utilities Department) SE corner Ash/Washington – The City Council approved a contractual agreement with Black and Veatch for design-build engineering services on April 4, 2018. The design-build engineer will complete final design and help select and manage a design-build contractor for construction of the project.
- Lake Wohlford Replacement Dam (Developer: City of Escondido Utilities Department) – A Draft EIR was prepared and issued for a 45-day public review period that began on October 4, 2016 and closed on November 17, 2016. A field visit with staff from the state and federal wildlife agencies took place on May 11, 2017, to review biological mitigation requirements including an agency request for full mitigation for emergent vegetation at the eastern end of the lake that came into existence since the lake level was reduced for safety reasons. Staff sent a follow-up letter to the wildlife agencies on June 29, 2017, seeking clarification on the proposed biological mitigation requirements. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife responded last month reiterating their earlier comments. Additional information is being compiled by the City’s biological consultants based on recent conversations with the agencies.
- Escondido Assisted Living (Developer: Tigg Mitchell, Mitchell Group) 1802 N. Centre City Parkway – This CUP application for a 71,300 SF three-story, assisted living and memory care facility with 90 total units was submitted on October 31, 2017. The City Council authorized review of a General Plan Amendment request on March 21, 2018, which was necessary to review the request to allow a third floor for the building. The applicant has been actively engaged with Fire, Engineering and Planning staff and has provided several revisions intended to address identified issues with the most recent project revision received on March 27, 2018.
- Citron (formerly Stella Park) (Developer: William Lyon Homes) 63 condo units at 2516 S. Esc. Blvd. – The final map has recorded. Construction of model units is underway on the western building along S. Escondido Boulevard. Building permits for the remaining buildings are expected to be issued once the internal access road and fire hydrants are installed.
- Wohlford (Developer: Jack Henthorne) 55 lots at 661 Bear Valley Pkwy. – Staff met with the applicant to review the draft conditions of approval for the project. Staff and the applicant have been working for some time to complete negotiations on final terms for the Development Agreement. On February 13, 2018, the Planning Commission continued the public hearing on this item at the applicant’s request to allow more time to finalize negotiations.
- Safari Highlands Ranch (SHR) (Developer: Jeb Hall, Concordia Homes) 550 lots east of Rancho San Pasqual – A Notice of Availability for the Draft EIR was issued on October 16, 2017 for public review and comment. The comment period ended on January 2, 2018. Staff transmitted all the comment letters and emails to the Draft EIR consultant for review and to prepare a response to each comment. The Draft EIR and appendices have been posted on the City’s website at the following link:
- 18 lots at 701 San Pasqual Valley Rd (Developer: Bob Stewart) – A three-year extension of time for the previously approved ten-lot subdivision (Tract 895) was approved by the City Council on June 7, 2017. Staff comments on the revised tentative map were issued the last week of July. Staff met with the applicant several months ago regarding unresolved project design issues. The applicant has had one follow-up discussion with Utilities since then.
- Escondido Gateway (Developer: Carolyn Hillgren, Lyon Living) 126 condo units at 700 W. Grand – Building plans have been approved by Esgil, Planning and Fire. Grading plans have been approved by Utilities, Planning and Fire. A street vacation for right-of-way frontage along Grand Avenue has been completed. The Building Division has issued a permit ready letter; and the Engineering Division has issued a bond and fee letter. It is expected the construction permits will be ready to be issued once title to the site transfers to the builder at the end of April 2018.
- The Villages at Escondido Country Club (Developer: Jason Han, New Urban West, Inc.) 380 residences – The City Council voted 3-2 to approve the project on November 15, 2017. The vacant clubhouse building was destroyed by fire several days later. A lawsuit challenging the project approval was filed in Superior Court on behalf of the Escondido Country Club Homeowners (ECCHO) on December 15, 2017. The City has been working with the property owner and project applicant to demolish what’s left of the clubhouse and a demo permit was issued on March 30, 2018. Demolition is expected to start this week.
The approved tentative subdivision map, Final EIR and appendices, Specific Plan and other related information can be accessed on the City’s website at the following link:
- North Avenue Estates (Developer: Casey Johnson) 34 lots at North Ave./Conway Dr. – The Planning Commission voted to recommend approval of the project on November 28, 2017. The City Council approved the project on January 10, 2018. The LAFCO application for annexation was submitted to LAFCO on February 20, 2018. On March 22, 2018, LAFCO staff provided a letter requesting additional information to support the annexation request. Staff provided the requested information to LAFCO on April 4, 2018.
- Aspire (106 condo units on Municipal Lot 1) (Developer: Addison Garza, Touchstone Communities) – The proposal consists of a six-story mixed-use development on Parking Lot 1. The project was initially submitted for entitlement processing on June 23, 2017. Subsequent meetings with the applicant and staff have been on-going and a resubmittal of the project plans was received on December 12, 2017. Planning, Fire and Building sent comments on the revised project submittal on January 16, 2018. Staff design review occurred on March 15, 2018 and related comments have been provided to the applicant. Staff is awaiting submittal of the environmental documentation for review.
- The Ivy (95 condo units at 343 E. 2nd) (Developer: Addison Garza, Touchstone Communities) - The condo project was initially submitted for entitlement processing on June 23, 2017. The applicant submitted revised project plans on December 8, 2017. The City issued a comment letter on the revised application on January 8, 2018. Staff design review occurred on March 15, 2018 and related comments have been provided to the applicant. Staff is awaiting submittal of the environmental documentation for review.
- Grand Avenue Apartments (Developer: Norm LaCaze, Escondido Venture 99, LLC) 15 apt. units at 1316 E. Grand Ave. – A planned development application proposing 15 multi-family units in one three-story building on a vacant 0.51-acre lot was submitted for entitlement processing on September 22, 2017. A completeness review letter was sent to the applicant on October 20, 2017, indicating the application was incomplete. Several follow-up meetings with staff appear to have resolved some of the outstanding issues regarding the project design and revised plans were submitted two weeks ago.
- Quince Street Senior Housing (Developer: Matt Jumper, 220 Quince, L.P.) 145 apartment units at 220 N. Quince St.– The five-story affordable senior housing apartment project was submitted on November 21, 2017. Planning staff sent a letter to the applicant on December 21, 2017, indicating the application was incomplete. Three meetings with the applicant team and multiple city departments have occurred since the project submittal to discuss project design issues, with the most recent meeting occurring on April 11, 2018.
- Sager Ranch/Daley Ranch Resort Specific Plan (Developer: J. Whalen Associates, Inc., Sager Ranch Partners) 203 housing units and 225-room resort hotel on 1,783-acres, just north and east of Dailey Ranch – This proposed residential and resort hotel annexation and specific plan project was received on March 2, 2018. The project submittal has been deemed incomplete and a letter from staff requesting additional project related information was sent to the applicant on April 4, 2018. A project webpage containing draft documents and plans has been added to the Planning Division’s website at the following link:
Daley Ranch Resort Specific Plan - City of Escondido
- Accessory Dwelling Units – Planning staff is currently working on two applications for accessory dwelling units and one more application is anticipated. Five accessory dwelling units have been approved this year.
- The Building Division issued 53 permits with a total valuation of $574,480.
- 21 solar photovoltaic permits were issued for the week. The Building Division has issued 272 solar permits for the year compared to 265 issued for 2017.
- Our building inspectors responded to 186 inspection requests for the week.
- The total building valuation for all issued permits through April 7th is $18,244,439 compared with $31,923,373 for same time last year. Building has processed 784 projects so far in 2018 compared with 846 projects in 2017.
- Projects nearing permit issuance are:
- 917 W Lincoln, 3 new apartment buildings, 9 units.
- 700 W Grand Ave Gateway project (previous police building).
- 2516 S. Escondido Blvd. “Citron” a 63-unit condominium project (model building already issued).
- The Meadowbrook three-story apartment building with underground garage at 2081 Garden Valley Glen is preparing the building for final inspection. No change from the previous.
- The medical office building at 2125 Citracado Pkwy is preparing for final inspection of the tenant improvement. No change from the previous.
- Seven of the eight residential buildings at the Westminster Seminary at 1725 Bear Valley Pkwy are preparing the buildings for final inspection and temporary electrical service has been released. No change from the previous.
- The Emanuel Faith Church at 639 E 17th Ave is preparing for final inspection and temporary electrical service has been released. No change from the previous.
- The Church of Resurrection at 1445 Conway is preparing for final inspection. No change from the previous.
- The new Veterans Village project at 1540 S Escondido Blvd has received rough plumbing inspection approval.
- The new drive-thru restaurant at 720 N. Center City Pkwy and the new retail building at 730 N. Centre City Pkwy have received framing approval for the building exterior shell building. The new drive-thru restaurant at 700 N. Centre City Pkwy has received exterior lath approval and is ready for stucco. No change from the previous.
- The new market at the location of the former Toyota dealership at 151 W Lincoln is requesting final inspection of the exterior shell building.
- The new Starbucks at 121 W. Lincoln has received foundation inspection approval and slab approval.
- The Latitude 2, apartment complex at 650 N Center City Pkwy has received first floor exterior shear and floor sheathing approval for the second floor on Buildings 1 and 2.
- The new two story church sanctuary building at 1864 N Broadway has inspection approval for the 8th and partial 9th grout lift of the masonry walls. No change from the previous.
- The new Starbucks at 302 W El Norte Pkwy has received final inspection approval and is now open.
- The 212,000 sf industrial shell building at 2005 Harmony Grove has received partial sewer and water service approval.
- The new 63-unit condominium project, Citron, at 2516 S Escondido Blvd has received floor sheathing inspection for the second floor on Building 1. No change from the previous.
- The new Springhill Suites 105-room hotel at 200 La Terraza has received slab inspection approval.
- The new Starbucks at 1645 S. Centre City Parkway has received inspection approvals for underground plumbing, foundation, slab and roof sheathing.
- Plans were submitted last week for a new residential duplex at 715 E. Washington Avenue.
Valley Pkwy/Valley Center Road Widening Project: Day 161
The contractor is continuing to install and test the main line irrigation along the east side of Valley Parkway and Valley Center Road this week. The masonry subcontractor has resumed installation of CMU blocks for the sound wall along East Valley Parkway. The water main syphon was installed at Valle Lindo Drive this past week. The remaining two sections of 30” RCP storm drain at this water main crossing have been installed. The contractor is excavating for the green street bio swale; this treatment control feature is in place to treat the first rain fall of each storm event.
Neighborhood Lighting Project
No changes from that reported last week: The Neighborhood Street light project is nearing completion with street lights energized in four of the five neighborhoods on February 14th. The project features the installation of 44 new street lights with L.E.D. Luminaries in five neighborhoods: The Elms, Rustic Village, Mission Grove, Cedar-Cedar Brook, and Rose to Foxdale. Additionally, 22 existing street light fixtures were retrofit with L.E.D. The new L.E.D. Luminaries shine a clean white light on the surrounding area, in contrast with the yellow light given off by the existing fixtures. The Rose to Foxdale energization has been delayed another two weeks for further review by the utility provider.
2017 Street Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project
City crews have installed striping and delineation for the concrete curb installed along Broadway at Mission Avenue and Washington Avenue at Ash Street. The Notice of Completion for this project will be taken before Council for approval at the April 25th meeting.
Transit Center Pedestrian Bridge Project
No changes from that reported last week: The Transit Center Pedestrian Bridge and Spruce Street Channel Improvement Project is moving forward with 100% design completion.
Missing Link Project
No changes from that reported last week: This project will complete the street improvements needed to link riders from the channel bike path that currently ends at Broadway, to where the it re-starts at Quince. Project bids were opened on January 18th, and the contract was awarded to Eagle Paving on February 14th. Construction is anticipated to begin mid-April, with completion expected 120 working days following the Notice to Proceed. The City has received a signed contract and has scheduled the preconstruction meeting for April 16th. The City has directed the contractor to order some elements of the project which have a long lead time due to the special ordering requirement.
The roadway and striping improvements for the new 300’ median curb extension and colored median sidewalk were completed last week. The new striping alignment along Escondido Boulevard from El Norte Parkway to Decatur Way was also placed last week. The new alignment will create a center turn lane to facilitate access to the businesses and apartment community along this stretch of roadway. As a result of this traffic mitigation measure, street parking along the west side of Escondido Boulevard between Decatur Way and El Norte Parkway has been removed. Red curbing and signage is in place to enforce the new requirements. Businesses and the apartment communities were provided advance notification of the work being performed. The new striping alignment for the section of Lincoln Avenue between Broadway and Escondido Boulevard has also been laid out. The new alignment will limit on street parking while providing a center turning movement for access to the new shopping center as well as the adjacent Escondido school district maintenance facility. A student drop-off area will be allowed within the new shopping Center Parking lot.
Centre City Shopping Center
The offsite dry utility work along Mission Avenue between Centre City Parkway and Escondido Boulevard is continuing this week. Electronic message boards are in place to notify that all businesses are open during construction. The project is located at 425 W. Mission Avenue.
Tract 932 - Canyon Grove Shea Homes Community
No changes from that reported last week: The developer will continue the construction of new homes with most roadway improvements complete at this time.
Latitude II Condominiums by a Lyon Homes Partnership: Washington Avenue @ Centre City Parkway
The contractor completed the construction of the storm drain along Centre City Parkway this past week.
No changes from that reported last week: The storm drain along Escondido Boulevard is now complete. The #1 north bound lane of Escondido Boulevard is being permanently repaved this week and all lanes of traffic will be reopened by weeks’ end.
Exeter Industrial Park
The grading operation is continuing this week. Storm drain installation is now complete and work will shift to the construction of Rincon water utilities onsite. The project is located at 2005 Harmony Grove Road and is 5.4 acres in size.
Work for offsite improvements is continuing this week with the construction of utility trenches along the Washington Avenue frontage.
SDG&E Gas Main Corrosion Testing
The utility has processed an Encroachment Permit for work along two segments of the main line. The first location is along Mission Avenue between Nordahl Road and Enterprise Street. The second location is along Hale Avenue between the Washington Avenue intersection and Metcalf Street, then along Metcalf Street between Lincoln Avenue and Washington Avenue, and finally on Lincoln Avenue between Rock Springs Road and Metcalf Street. The work involves drilling ½” diameter holes through the asphalt roadway at 10’ intervals along the pipe line. At each hole, the contractor will test the pipe and soil for the potential for corrosion. All drill holes will be filled by means of an approved joint compound. Electronic message boards will be used to notify businesses and vehicles traveling the route of potential detours and traffic delays. The work is expected to be completed over a 3-week period. The preconstruction meting for this work has not been scheduled at this time.
- At the San Diego County Chiefs Association meeting on Thursday, April 5th, the Escondido Firefighters Association was recognized by the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) for having one of the highest increases in Fill the Boot fundraising at the last MDA event. Huge thanks to all Escondido Fire Department volunteers and to Firefighter Paramedic Matt Flowers for spearheading this effort over the last several years.
- On April 5th and 6th, Fire Chiefs and Company Officers from departments throughout North San Diego County participated in training in Escondido Fire’s simulation lab (also known as the Emergency Operations Center). The training focused on expanded emergencies involving injured firefighters. On April 5th, Escondido Police and Fire dispatchers also participated in the simulations. The multi-agency training provided realistic simulations that were discussed and critiqued. This was a great opportunity for fire commanders who work together on incidents to train together.
- On 4-3-2018, officers responded to the 400 block of W. 2nd Ave. in reference to a women attempting to jump off a second story balcony. Officers arrived on scene, made entry into the residence and grabbed the women off of the balcony railing. The women, who has a history of mental health issues, was transported to the hospital.
- On 4-6-2018, officers responded to the 600 block of E. Mission Ave, in reference to a restraining order violation. Officers arrived on scene and contacted the suspect hiding in a bedroom closet. The suspect did not comply with commands and officers struggled with the suspect in order to take him into custody. The suspect was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for the restraining order violation and assault on a police officer.
- On 4-6-2018, officers responded to the 1100 block of E. 3rd Ave. in reference to someone trespassing on the property. Officers arrived on scene and contacted over 15 people. One person was found to have a felony warrant issued for his arrest. The subject was taken into custody without incident and booked into the Vista Detention Facility for the warrant.
- On 4-7-2018, officers located a stolen vehicle in the area Valley Pkwy. and Citrus Ave. An enforcement stop was conducted and the driver and a passenger were taken into custody without incident. The driver was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for possession of a stolen vehicle.
The COPPS (Community Oriented Policing and Problem-Solving) Unit is dedicated to increasing the quality of life for the residents of Escondido through pro-active responses to crime trends, quality of life issues, and addressing crime and public nuisance in Grape Day Park and at Maple Plaza.
- 2 arrests were made
- 7 citations were issued
- On 4-7-2018, the Murrieta Police Department conducted their inaugural Murrieta K-9 Trial, where 56 teams competed from various agencies across California and Mexico. Officers Lunt, Gimenez, and Putulowski represented the Escondido Police Department in this event. Officer Gimenez and his police service dog, Bo, won the Toughest Dog honors during the competition.