FEATURED THIS WEEK
Increased Wi-Fi Usage leads to Upgrades to the Downtown Wireless
Our downtown Wi-Fi has been a huge success and its usage continues to grow. We have just increased the bandwidth to keep up with demand. The numbers show the success of this project as our residents are heavily using the free Wi-Fi in the downtown area.
Safety Concern Leads to Quick Action
A resident contacted City Council this week with a concern for the safety of her hearing impaired child. She has lived in town for while and her son had a close call on their street this week. City staff is working quickly to get street signs in place on her street indicating that a deaf child is in the area.
Great Coverage from the Coast News Group
The article highlights the exciting new development happening in South Escondido. “An influx of new buildings is introducing a modern vibe to South Escondido’s rustic landscape just as city planners are preparing to roll out draft guidelines for high-quality development that will blend in with the area’s existing structures…” Read the full article here: http://www.thecoastnews.com/2017/08/11/new-buildings-bring-feeling-of-life-to-south-escondido/
Christ Bible Church Community Event – Grape Day Park
Saturday, August 19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Free community event with activities.
Herman Construction Group Inc., a small business based in Escondido, recently received a $9.4 million contract modification to design and build a structure at Vandenberg Air Force Base in Santa Barbara County. Read the full article here: http://sdbj.com/news/2017/aug/15/escondido-construction-firm-awarded-pentagon-contr/
Major Projects Update
The following major projects are currently being reviewed and coordinated with Planning, Engineering, Fire, Building and Utilities staff. A complete description of each project can be viewed here. Updates provided below cover project milestones that occurred last week.
Commercial / Office:
- Escondido Research and Technology Center – East (ERTC) (Developer: James McCann) – A grading plan for a temporary parking lot to serve the hospital was approved June 13, 2016, and the parking lot is now under construction.
- Escondido Research and Technology Center – West (ERTC) (Developer: James McCann) – Construction is underway on the approximately 76,000 square foot medical office building with a linear accelerator. A plan for a new two-story, 57,000 SF, 52-bed Palomar Rehabilitation Institute was submitted on July 31, 2017 and is now being reviewed by staff. The facility is proposed in an existing parking lot south of the hospital.
- Springhill Suites (Developer: Raj Patel, San Bernardino Hospitality LLC) – Final interior design changes to meet Marriott’s current generation prototype were approved by Esgil and Planning on July 11, 2017. Final design is close for the traffic signal at the project driveway entry.
- Centre City Commercial Center (Developer: Todd Dwyer) – The Plot Plan has been approved and demolition has started. The applicant has submitted grading, building and landscape plans and the final parcel map. The expedited plan check process started on July 25, 2017.
- StorQuest 222 W. Mission Ave. (Developer: The William Warren Group, Inc.) – The grading plan has been approved and the mylars are in Engineering awaiting final posting of deposits and fees. Building plans have now been approved by Esgil, Planning and Fire. Landscape plans were submitted on June 7, 2017 and Planning reviews have been returned to the applicant.
- Escondido Self-Storage Facility (Developer: Brandywine Homes, Inc.) – Building plans grading plans, landscape plans and the final map have been submitted and comments have been provided by staff and Esgil. Revised grading, street and improvement plans were submitted by the applicant on July 14, 2017. Planning comments will be issued this week.
- Innovative Industrial Development (Developer: Scott Merry, Badiee Development) – Comments on the building permit application have been returned. Landscaping drawings were submitted on May 9, 2017. The second check of the grading plan is nearing approval.
- North American Self-Storage (Developer: Russ Colvin) – This project is participating in the expedited plan check program. The demo permit has been issued. Building plans were approved by Esgil, Planning and Fire the last week of June. The grading plan was approved on August 1, 2017. The applicant is finalizing the improvement plans in response to Utilities comments on the Metcalf water line.
- Micro-Filtration Reverse Osmosis (Developer: City of Escondido Utilities Department) – No further updates to this item will be provided while litigation is in progress: The Planning Commission approved the proposed CUP on December 13, 2016. An appeal of that decision was filed and the City Council denied the appeal on January 11, and affirmed the Planning Commission’s decision to approve 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. Staff and AECOM are now in the process of coordinating responses to the comments that were received during the public review period. A field visit with staff from the state and federal wildlife agencies took place on May 11, 2017, to review biological mitigation requirements. Staff sent a follow-up letter to the wildlife agencies on June 29, 2017, seeking clarification on the proposed biological mitigation requirements.
- Escondido United Reformed Church (Developer: Brent Cooper) – The applicant submitted a CUP modification application on May 25, 2017, to increase the size of the sanctuary and classroom buildings and delete Phase 4. That modification was approved by the Planning Commission on June 27, 2017. Plan check has been underway during the CUP modification process with the building plans already in third plan check and the grading plan in second plan check.
- Self-Realization Fellowship Center (Developer: John Pyjar, Domusstudio Architecture – The CUP application was submitted on November 14, 2016. Staff reviewed the initial submittal and sent a letter to the applicant on December 14, 2016, indicating that the application was incomplete. The applicant resubmitted revised plans and technical studies on May 19, 2017, and staff has been issuing comments on the various documents.
- Citron (formerly Stella Park) Condominiums (Developer: William Lyon Homes) – Building plans were submitted on April 6, 2017. Esgil and Planning have provided comments. Fire has approved the building plans. The rough grading has been completed on the site. The applicant resubmitted the precise grading plan on July 14, 2017.
- Wohlford (Developer: Jack Henthorne) – The Draft EIR has been posted on the city website and released for a 45-day public review period that ended on May 12, 2017. The EIR consultant provided the responses to public comments and Final EIR has recently been provided to the Planning Division. City staff is currently working to upload all of the content and schedule the item with the Planning Commission for review and consideration.
- Safari Highlands Ranch (SHR) (Developer: Jeb Hall, Concordia Homes) – A second revised tentative map depicting various minor changes and clarifications to roads, easements and drainage facilities was submitted on April 25, 2017. Revised technical engineering reports as well as responses to staff comments also have been submitted for review. The revised studies have been loaded on the City’s website at the following link: Safari Highlands Ranch Specific Plan - City of Escondido.
- 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.
- Escondido Gateway (Developer: Carolyn Hillgren, Lyon Living) – Demolition of the former police building commenced on July 25, 2017 and should be completed by the end of this week. Building plans have been approved by Esgil and Fire. Grading plans have been approved by Utilities, Planning and Fire.
- The Villages at Escondido Country Club (Developer: Jason Han, New Urban West, Inc.) – Planning staff has provided a location on the city’s website for ECC project-related documents and plans. A 45-day public review period for the Draft EIR commenced on June 28, 2017, and was recently extended by one-week to end on August 18, 2017. The one-week extension allows for a 52-day public review and comment period. Staff and the EIR consultant hosted an open house on July 31, 2017, to provide information related to the Draft EIR and accept written comments. The Draft EIR and appendices have been placed on the city website. This information along with project status and other related information can be accessed at the following link: ECC - City of Escondido
- Ivy/Valley Parkway Mixed-Use Development (Developer: Abad Rahan Pars Inc./ Norm Wieme, Architect: The applicant has indicated that grading and building plans are expected to be submitted into plan check soon. The reimbursement agreement for new water infrastructure that will be installed by the project in the adjoining alley is being readied for City Council approval.
- North Avenue Estates (Developer: Casey Johnson) – An application to re-entitle aspects of the previously approved project that have expired and modify the project design to reflect new storm water requirements was submitted to the Planning Division on March 7, 2017. A revised tentative map was submitted last week and is currently being reviewed by staff. A new annexation survey of surrounding property owners was mailed out at the request of LAFCO. A neighborhood meeting hosted by staff and the project applicant occurred on August 9, 2017. City staff is currently receiving survey feedback from surrounding property owners to determine next steps with LAFCO.
- Aspire and The Ivy (Developer: Addison Garza, Touchstone Communities) – The project consists of three separate downtown sites proposed for mixed-use, residential and parking garage project components on Parking Lot 1, Parking Lot 4 and the former Escondido Surgery Center property. Applications were submitted for entitlement processing on June 23, 2017. A project kick-off meeting with the applicant and city staff occurred on July 13, 2017. On July 24, 2017, staff sent a letter to the applicant indicating the project application submittal was incomplete.
- Our building inspectors responded to 189 inspection requests for the week.
- A total of 17 solar photovoltaic permits were issued for the week. The Building Division has issued 581 solar permits this year, to date, compared to 779 issued during the same time last year.
- Building has issued 132 single family dwelling permit this year and 224 multi-family units. Compared with 46 single family dwelling and 88 multi-family dwellings for same time last year.
- Projects nearing permit issuance are:
- 917 W Lincoln, 3 new apartment buildings, 9 units.
- 700 W Grand Ave Gateway project (previous police/fire building)
- The construction of the abandon 3-story mixed use building at 300 S Escondido Blvd (City Plaza) has received partial approval of roof faming and rough framing inspections and drywall is being installed throughout along with the exterior lath.
- Drywall is being installed in the first floor units at the Meadowbrook 3-story apartment building with underground garage at 2081 Garden Valley Glen. The nursey care facility is now open. No change from the previous week. Work is on-going.
- Escondido Disposal has received final inspection approval for the administration and recycling buildings and Phase II of their construction to begin next week.
- Demolition of the previous bank building at 444 S Escondido Blvd is nearing completion. No change from the previous.
- The medical office building at 2125 Citracado Pkwy has completed the 2nd and 3rd floor concrete slabs and framing is on-going.
- The medical office building at 1951 Citracado Pkwy is beginning construction of the building roof framing. No change from the previous week. Work is on-going.
- The Westminster Seminary at 1725 Bear Valley Pkwy is proceeding with the framing all of the buildings. No change from the previous week. Work is on-going.
- The Emanuel Faith Church at 639 E 17th Ave and the Church of Resurrection at 1445 Conway has started the framing of the roof framing structural steel. No change from the previous week. Work is on-going.
- The new Veterans Village project at 1540 S Escondido Blvd has received underground plumbing, partial foundation and masonry inspections for the residential buildings. No change from previous week. Work is on-going.
- The Calvin Christian church at 2000 N Broadway is nearing final inspection approval for the new Sanctuary building. No change from the previous. Work is on-going.
Housing and Neighborhood Services Division:
Housing and Neighborhood Services will be offering a free Neighborhood Leadership Training course open to Escondido residents. Classes will be on Mondays, starting September 11, 2017 through October 30, 2017 from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. This Neighborhood Leadership Training offers opportunities for participants to build and strengthen leadership skills, provides networking opportunities, and tools which can be applied towards developing stronger communities.
Participants will also obtain information and tools to:
- Identify existing talents and put them to practice
- Speak in public with confidence
- Learn tools that will help their personal growth and community
- Learn or strengthen interpersonal communication, team and planning skills applicable to their work, neighborhood and school
- Learn how to effectively use technology as a practical and innovative tool to unite communities
Translation in Spanish will be available and refreshments will be provided for attendees. To learn more, please go to the Neighborhood Services Website at the following link.
Neighborhood Services and Leadership Training Flyer or contact Dulce Salazar at (760) 839-4057 or email@example.com
Public Works Operations
East Valley Pkwy/Valley Center Road Widening Project
This project will widen the bridge over Escondido Creek north of Lake Wohlford Road, widen Valley Center Road, add medians and landscaping, and construct sidewalk from Beven Drive to the northern City limit. This project bid on May 25, 2017 and was award by the City Council at the July 12, 2017 meeting. The signed contract was received on August 8, setting into motion the preconstruction meeting. Staff is developing a web site link which will provide information regarding project status and project contact information. The link will be available on the City’s website in early September.
Neighborhood Streetlight Project
This project will add new streetlights to meet current lighting standards, and retrofit existing streetlights with LED fixtures at five established communities throughout the City (Cedar-Cedar Brook, Mission Grove, Rose to Foxdale, Rustic Village, The Elms). Five bids were received, with the apparent low bid being $500,580.00. It is anticipated that award of the construction contract will be requested of the City Council at the August 16, 2017 meeting.
Encino Street Storm Drain Repair:
The final construction of the 42” storm drain replacement was started on Monday, August 7, 2017. Installation of the asphalt berm and sidewalk are scheduled for August 16, 2017.
Annual Street Maintenance Project
No changes from that reported last week: Bid documents for the next annual street maintenance project are being prepared. The project will replace uplifted sidewalks and trees, apply pavement treatments, and restripe with bike lanes in compliance with the City’s Bike Master Plan. This year’s project will focus in the NE Maintenance Zone, which is bounded by Broadway on the West, Lincoln on the South, and the City limits on the North and East. In addition, resurfacing is planned on portions of Lincoln, El Norte, Broadway, Felicita and Andreasen. Staff expects to finalize bid documents later this summer, request City Council award of the contract, and begin construction in the Fall. The list of streets to be paved will be posted on the Engineering page of City’s website in August.
Pradera - Lennar Communities
Phase 7 homes are being released for occupancy this week.
Lexington Model Homes - KB Homes
No activity to report this week.
Citron Project by William Lyon Homes
The mass grading of the project will be completed this week; the project is located 2516 S. Escondido Boulevard.
Escondido Boulevard at 3rd Avenue
No changes from that reported last week: The contractor is continuing to place framing along the third floor, lane closures along 3rd Avenue will be ongoing to allow for the lifting of construction materials to the third floor roof.
Tract 932 - Canyon Grove Shea Homes Community
The final offsite traffic signal located at the Ash/ Vista intersection was energized on August 15th, in advance of the school reopening. The first home releases for occupancy are scheduled for next week, there are 178 units remaining.
Latitude II Condominiums by a Lyon Homes Partnership: Washington Avenue at Centre City Parkway
The construction of the offsite water main located on Centre City Parkway between Mission Avenue and the project is continuing this week with water quality testing being performed. The traffic signal relocation at Washington Avenue / Centre City Parkway intersection has been delayed. The new mast arm is on back order which will also delay the installation of the storm drain for this section of the project.
No changes from that reported last week: The project’s offsite water improvement is continuing this week.
Tract 877 – Bernardo Ave. by Ambient Communities
The onsite construction of the concrete curb and gutter improvement was completed this week.
Palomar Medical Center
The construction of the second new driveway approach is continuing this week. The contractor has completed the rough grading of the temporary parking lot pad across from the main entrance to the hospital. Streetlight are being stood this week, the lights for the parking lot are powered by a solar panel system.
Victory Industrial Park
No changes from that reported last week: The grading operation at this site, including the importing of material, will continue this week. The project is located at 2005 Harmony Grove Road and is 5.4 acres in size.
The offsite improvements have been started which include storm drain, water and sewer pipeline work. The first water line tie in is scheduled for Thursday of this week during a night time operation. The project is located at 999 Broadway.
Spring Hill Suites Hotel/ La Terraza Boulevard
The grading operation in continuing this week.
- On Saturday, August 5, 2017, the City of Escondido Fire Department sent a Battalion Chief, a Captain and Brush Engine 133 with 4 firefighters as part of a North Zone Strike Team to assist with the Parker 2 Fire (near the Oregon border). On Monday, August 7, 2017, The City of Escondido Fire Department also sent a Captain as a “Line Medic” to help support the Parker 2 Fire. As of Sunday, August 13, 2017, the fire was over 7,900 acres and 80% contained. A Forest Closure is still in effect for areas impacted by the Parker 2 Fire. While containment on the fire continues to increase, there are still significant hazards inside the fire perimeter, including weakened trees, still burning stump holes which can be hard to detect and even a possibility that remaining islands of unburned vegetation will continue to ignite and burn. There are still over 600 firefighters working to contain the Parker 2 Fire.
- On Wednesday, August 9, 2017 at approximately 03:07 AM, the Escondido Police and Fire Communication Center received a report of smoke in the area of 1025 N Escondido Blvd. A fire engine responded for a smoke check. Upon arrival they found a large amount of smoke coming from the garage of a two story apartment unit. The engine company on scene requested a first alarm structure fire response at 03:16 AM. The first arriving engine began firefighting efforts. Aggressive action by the firefighters contained and controlled the fire in approximately 15 minutes. The apartment was undergoing renovation and was vacant at time of the fire. There were no injuries to firefighter’s or civilians. In all, five fire engines, one truck, one rescue ambulance and one Battalion Chief responded to the fire. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
- On Monday, August 14, 2017, The City of Escondido Fire Department sent a Captain, Engineer and 2 Firefighters on OES 8632 to the Blaine Fire in Moreno Valley. A total of 404 Firefighters are working on containment and have utilized 35 engines, 12 crews, 2 water tenders, 1 air attack, 2 air tankers, and 2 helicopters. As of Monday, August 14, 2017 at 14:00 hours, the fire was 30% contained and had burned over 1,000 acres.
- On 8/6/17, at 22:55 hours, a DUI enforcement officer attempted to stop a Honda Accord for traffic violations. The vehicle failed to yield and a pursuit was initiated. The vehicle eventually got onto the 15 northbound, reaching speeds in excess of 100 mph. Due to the excessive speed, and when he lost sight of the vehicle merging to the 78 Fwy, the officer terminated the pursuit as the vehicle exited the freeway, onto the Nordahl exit. As officers and deputies searched the area, a citizen reported that a vehicle had crashed into a dumpster enclosure at 704 Center Dr. (City of San Marcos). While combing the area, officers located the driver, a documented West Side Gang member, hiding under several layers of debris and rubbish in a metal trash bin. The driver was arrested for Felony Evading. Escondido Police Department reported on the arrest, and San Marcos Sheriff’s handled the collision report. Great teamwork by the responding officers and deputies.
- On 8/7/17 at 19:35 hours, EPD units responded to a home in the 1800 block of Cortez Ave in reference to a 63-year-old male who had entered his estranged wife’s garage and was waving a 6” blade knife. The victim has a valid and served Restraining Order against the male. When officers arrived, the male suspect was alone in the victim’s residence, extremely intoxicated and had made statements to the victim that he “wanted the police to kill him”. Officers developed a plan and made P.A. announcements from the street. The suspect ultimately exited the home and was arrested after a minor use of force (no injuries).
- On 8/8/17 at 02:37 hours, officers responded to 975 Del Dios Rd in reference to a suspicious male pacing back and forth in the parking lot. This was the third service call regarding this subject; he was gone upon police arrival the two previous times. Officers contacted the male in question and arrested him for public intoxication. Incident to arrest, officers discover the following in his possession: cell phones, electronic scales, over 500 Xanax pills, cocaine, heroin, mushrooms, marijuana and cash indicative of illegal street drug sales.
- On 8/8/17 at 05:25 hours, officers respond to the 3100 block of Willow Tree Ln in reference to a hot-prowl residential burglary that just occurred. The Reporting Party advised he can identify the suspect. Units converge and located the female suspect in a vehicle and took her into custody without incident. The vehicle was determined to be an unreported stolen car from Escondido. Suspect booked for Burglary and Auto Theft.
- On 8/8/17 at 12:20 hours, a male victim called 911 from the Transit Center (700 W. Valley Pkwy) to report he was the victim of a robbery which occurred a couple hours before at the same location. The victim stated the suspect, (Black Male Adult, 6’0”, heavy, possible transient) struck him over the head, from behind, and knocked him into the rose bushes. The victim said he must have been knocked out for 2 hours and when he awoke, he was missing $20 from his pocket. The victim does not think he could ID the suspect. The victim had a small hematoma on the back of his head and small cuts, presumably from the bushes he fell into. During the previous 2 hours, dispatch did not receive and fight calls or disturbances from the transit center.
- On 8/9/17 at 03:10 hours, officers and the Fire Department were dispatched to 1025 N. Escondido Blvd reference smoke seen coming out of a vacant apartment. Officers quickly determined the apartment’s garage was on fire and evacuated adjoining apartments; the complex has 4 attached units. A short time later the Fire Department extinguished the fire and determined the adjoining units were habitable. In addition, evidence clearly suggests the fire was intentionally set. A Fire Department Arson Investigator and an EPD Field Evidence Technician responded to the scene.
- On 8/10/17 at 07:25 hours, a male suspect was contacted in front of 16 Rancho Drive in reference to a call from family that he was destroying property, violent and under the influence of a controlled substance. Upon arrival, the suspect was pacing in the roadway and holding cutting shears in his right hand and a piece of brick in his left. He refused to comply with orders given and when he attempted to advance on officers, 40mm Less Lethal was deployed. The suspect dropped the weapons and was taken into custody following an additional minor use of force. No officers were injured and the suspect was transported to Palomar Medical Center for medical clearance before being booked into Vista Detention Facility on multiple charges.
- On 8/11/17, at 19:00 hours, officers responded to the Home Depot, 1475 E. Valley Pkwy, in reference to an assault where the suspect struck the victim in the head with an aluminum cane. The suspect was located and arrested by officers a short distance away, at the Wal-Mart on E. Valley Pkwy. The victim did not require medical attention.
- On 8/11/17 at 19:05 hours, officers responded to the Boost Mobile (639 W. 9th Ave) in reference to a radio call of an armed robbery which had just occurred. The two suspects were described as a heavy set Hispanic male and a heavy set Hispanic female. The weapon used was a silver colored handgun. Both suspects left on foot in a northern direction from the Boost Mobile.
- On 8/12/17 at 09:30 hours, a male adult suspect was in a verbal argument with 3 juvenile subjects near the Autozone at 440 W. Felicita Ave. During the argument, the suspect produced a knife and began chasing the juveniles and attempted to stab all three. One of the juveniles fell to the ground while running away and was stabbed once in the abdomen. Police responded and located the suspect at the nearby McDonalds. The suspect was taken into custody following a minor use of force. The juvenile was transported to Palomar Medical Center and was reported in stable condition following surgery. he suspect was booked into Vista Detention Facility on Attempt Murder charges.
- On 8/12/17 at 13:49 hours, a Patrol Sergeant was flagged down at 200 W. El Norte Pkwy regarding a fight. The Sgt. attempted to contact the two subjects involved. A short foot pursuit ensued resulting in both subjects being taken into custody. One of the subjects resisted arrest and was taken into custody following a use of force. Two officers received very minor injuries as a result of the arrest.
- On 8/12/17 at 15:38 hours, three Hispanic males entered the Vons (2345 E. Valley Pkwy) and attempted to leave without paying for liquor. When they were detained by a store employee, one male ran away and the other two males tackled the employee/victim. The victim dropped her cell phone at which point, one of the males grabbed the phone from the ground and all three exited the store, with the liquor and the victim’s cell phone (phone value at $600). The victim suffered abrasions to her elbow and a complaint of pain to her arm from the assault. The suspects were not located.
- On 8/12/17 at 21:50 hours, Palomar Medical Center called in reference to a patient that punched a nurse in the face, threatened to shoot everyone and was extremely combative. It took several officers and staff members to restrain the suspect. During the restraining process, the suspect intentionally kicked an officer in the head. The suspect was ultimately identified as a 15-year-old male who was brought in by medics earlier as a medical transport. The juvenile was later booked into Juvenile Hall for multiple assault charges. Neither the officers nor the suspect was injured; the nurse had a complaint of pain to the face.
The EPD 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 and community issues. Addressing crime and public nuisance in Grape Day Park is one project the Unit has been tasked with, along with patrolling the Downtown Business District and surrounding areas.
- 5 arrests were made
- 7 citations were issued
- The COPPS Unit covered Public Works members while abating property in the Flood Control Channel under Hwy 78
- An officer located a recently homeless mother with two children. They were provided with numerous resources and officers are currently looking for a family to take them in temporarily