Mayor Sam Abed Hosts State of the City
On Wednesday, February 28 the Mayor and Escondido Chamber of Commerce hosted the State of the City at the California Center for the Arts. 

Watch the full presentation at:

(link here)

Watch “Experience Escondido” a video highlighting all the City has to offer at:

(link here)

Burn Institute Fill-the-Boot Event
The Escondido Firefighters Association joined 29 other fire departments in the county by participating in the annual “fill-the-boot” fund drive for the San Diego Burn Institute on March 1. The two locations in Escondido were at Hwy 78 and Broadway and at I-15 and Via Rancho Pkwy. 

The fund raising efforts support the Burn Institute which provides programs to prevent burn injuries and services to support victims of burn injuries 

More information can be found at: http://burninstitute.org/bi-events/firefighter-boot-drive 

Innovate 78, the collaborative economic development initiative run by the five cities along the 78 Corridor, just released a new regional profile. The profile includes demographic information, industry clusters and other relevant economic data for the 78 Corridor. The profile can be viewed and downloaded at http://www.innovate78.com/about/dashboard . 


Major Projects Update
The following major projects are being reviewed and coordinated by Planning, Engineering, Fire, Building and Utilities.  A complete description of each project can be viewed here. Below are project milestones from last week. 

Commercial / Office:

  1. Escondido Research and Technology Center – West (ERTC) (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. Construction plans are expected soon. 
  1. Centre City Commercial Center (Developer: Todd Dwyer) SE corner Centre City/Mission – Construction on the two commercial buildings is underway. The carwash plans are tracking separately and revised carwash plans have now been approved by Esgil and Planning. Engineering is coordinating construction of street and off-site improvements with the developer. A portion of the internal driveway was completed last week.  The applicant is preparing tenant improvement plans for one of the three buildings and will be submitting those within the next week or two. 


  1. Escondido Self-Storage Facility (Developer: Brandywine Homes, Inc.) 2319 Cranston Dr. – The project plans are nearly ready for permit issuance. The applicant has recently notified staff that other issues unrelated to the project plans will delay their request for permits until March or April of 2018. 
  1. StorQuest (Developer: The William Warren Group, Inc.) 220 W. Mission Avenue – The building plans for the new four-story self-storage facility is close to approval and should be issued within the next week or two. 
  1. 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. Planning and Esgil 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. 
  1. Exeter Harmony Grove Industrial Development (Developer: John Couvillion, Badiee Development) 1925 and 2005 Harmony Grove Road – The grading permit was issued on December 29, 2017, and the building permit was issued on January 19, 2018. Grading and associated blasting is underway. Blasting and rock-crushing activities were completed this week.  The applicant is preparing tenant improvement plans and will be submitting those within the next week or two. 

City Projects 

  1. Micro-Filtration Reverse Osmosis (Developer: City of Escondido Utilities Department) SE corner Ash/Washington – The archaeological work plan has been submitted to the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) for approval. Funding of the state loan for the project is contingent on completing the work plan to the satisfaction of SHPO. 
  1. 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. 


  1. Self-Realization Fellowship Center (Developer: John Pyjar, Domusstudio Architecture 1840 Del Dios Rd. – The Planning Commission approved the proposed multi-phase expansion project on February 13, 2018. Construction plans for the first phase of the project are expected soon. 
  1. 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. A letter indicating the application is incomplete was sent to the applicant on November 30, 2017. The applicant has engaged with Fire, Engineering and Planning staff and has provided several revisions intended to address identified issues. A General Plan Amendment request is necessary to authorize a third story element to the building, which requires City Council authorization before intake for further processing.  City Council will review the authorization request at meeting in March or April and give direction to staff on how to process the application. 


  1. Citron (formerly Stella Park) (Developer: William Lyon Homes) 63 condo units at 2516 S. Esc. Blvd. – The City Council approved the final map on December 20, 2017. The rough grading has been completed on the site. Construction of model units are nearly complete on the western building along S. Escondido Boulevard. Building permits for the remaining buildings are pending recordation of the final map. Completion of the CC&Rs are expected soon. 
  1. 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. 
  1. 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 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:  https://www.escondido.org/safari-highlands-ranch-specific-plan.aspx 
  1. 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. 
  1. 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. Demolition is complete and construction permits are ready to be issued once title to the site transfers to the builder at the end of March 2018. 
  1. 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 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: https://www.escondido.org/ecc.aspx 
  1. 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 is being prepared and is expected to be submitted to LAFCO soon. 
  1. 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. A meeting with the project applicant occurred two weeks to discuss the technical studies needed to complete the environmental review for the project. A meeting to discuss engineering-related issues is expected to occur this week. 
  1. The Ivy (95 condo units at 343 E. 2nd) (Developer: Addison Garza, Touchstone Communities) - Demolition of the vacant surgery center building on The Ivy site started last month. 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. A meeting with the project applicant occurred two weeks ago to discuss the technical studies needed to complete the environmental review for the project. 
  1. 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. A follow-up meeting with the Fire Department last week resolved some of the outstanding issues regarding the project design. 
  1. 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. Two meetings with the applicant team and multiple city departments have occurred since the project submittal to discuss project design issues. 
  1. Accessory Dwelling Units – Planning staff is currently working on five applications for accessory dwelling units with an additional two applications expected to be submitted soon. One accessory dwelling unit has been approved this year. Another unit is expected to be approved this week.

Building Division: 

  1. This week the Building Division issued 46 permits with a total valuation of $402,238. 
  1. 15 solar photovoltaic permits were issued for the week. The Building Division has issued 137 solar permits for the year compared to 147 issued for 2017. 
  1. Our building inspectors responded to 202 inspection requests for the week. 12 inspections were held over on Monday, 6 on Tuesday and 8 on Friday. 
  1. The total building valuation for all issued permits for the week ending Feb 24th is $12,648,954 compared with $6,852,301 for same time last year. Building has processed 426 projects so far in 2018 compared with 469 projects in 2017. 
  1. Projects nearing permit issuance are:
    • 917 W Lincoln, 3 new apartment buildings, 9 units.
    • 700 W Grand Ave Gateway project (previous police/fire building) 
  1. The mixed use project at 300 S Escondido Blvd (City Plaza) has received a 30-day Temporary Certificate of Occupancy and residential units are now being leased out. Temporary Certificate of Occupancy expires on 3/6/18. 
  1. The Meadowbrook 3 story apartment building with underground garage at 2081 Garden Valley Glen is preparing the building for final inspection. The nursey care facility is now open. No change from the previous. 
  1. The medical office building at 2125 Citracado Pkwy is preparing for final inspection of the tenant improvement. No change from the previous. 
  1. The 8 residential buildings at the Westminster Seminary at 1725 Bear Valley Pkwy are preparing the buildings for final inspection. 
  1. The Emanuel Faith Church at 639 E 17th Ave is preparing for final inspection. No change from the previous. 
  1. The Church of Resurrection at 1445 Conway is preparing for final inspection. 
  1. The new Veterans Village project at 1540 S Escondido Blvd has received exterior framing and roof sheathing approval. 
  1. The new drive thru restaurant at 720 N Center City Pkwy, the new retail building at 730 N Center City Pkwy and the new drive thru restaurant at 700 N Center City Pkwy have received final masonry grout lift approval, exterior shear and roof sheathing approval. 
  1. The new market at the location of the former Toyota dealership at 151 W Lincoln has received exterior lath inspection approval. 
  1. The Latitude 2, apartment buildings at 650 N Center City Pkwy has received first floor exterior shear and floor sheathing for buildings 1-6. 
  1. The new two story church sanctuary building at 1864 N Broadway has inspection approval for the 5th grout lift of the masonry walls. 
  1. The new Starbucks at 302 W El Norte Pkwy are preparing for final inspection. No change from the previous. 
  1. The 212,000 sf industrial shell building at 2005 Harmony Grove received partial foundation inspection approval. 
  1. The new 63 condominium project, Citron, at 2516 S Escondido Blvd has received underground plumbing and partial foundation inspection for the models at building 1. 
  1. The new 105 room hotel at 200 La Terraza has received partial underground plumbing and foundation inspection.

Code Enforcement


Graffiti Restitution

Business Licensing



Capital Improvements
Valley Pkwy/Valley Center Road Widening Project: Day 120
The subcontractor imported and placed roadway base material along the east side of Valley Center Road and the west side of Valley Parkway this week.  The dry utility contractor has adjusted the roadway vaults and is setting transformer pad locations in advance of pulling new conductors. The 3 new utility poles required for the utility conversion project are scheduled to be installed on Friday, March 2 during a night time operation. The masonry subcontractor has completed the installation of block for the sound wall located along the west side of Valley Parkway.  The excavation of the sound wall footing is continuing this week along the east side of Valley Parkway between Beven Drive and Lake Wohlford Road. The steel reinforcement for the wall is currently being placed, with concrete placement scheduled for later this week. 

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.                                               

2017 Street Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project
The striping contractor is continuing with the installation of signage and striping throughout the project limits. Rain forecast for this week will affect the striping schedule. 

Corrugated Metal Storm Drain Pipe Assessment Study
This project televises all City-maintained corrugated metal pipes (CMP) and assesses their condition to allow for proactive and efficient pipe maintenance, 99% of the inventory has been televised.  The Midway Storm Drain Repair has been awarded and a preconstruction meeting was held on Wednesday, February 21. Including pipe delivery lead time, the contractor will complete the pipe line replacement in 60 days from the Notice to Proceed. 

Rincon del Diablo Water Main Replacement
The water district’s contractor is in the process of completing permanent roadway repairs. This work will require a single lane closure along Nutmeg Street between Rockhoff Road and Centre City Parkway. 

Transit Center Pedestrian Bridge Project
The Transit Center Pedestrian Bridge and Spruce Street Channel Improvement Project is moving forward with 100% design. 

Missing Link Project
This project will complete improvements to link riders from the channel bike path that 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 between late March and mid-April, with an expected completion of 120 working days following the Notice to Proceed. 


Centre City Shopping Center
The project grading is complete and framing has begun on the first two structures.  The project is located at 425 W. Mission Avenue. 

Tract 932 - Canyon Grove Shea Homes Community
The developer has completed the installation of the water main along Vista Verde Way and is in the process of testing the water quality prior to connecting the pipeline to the City’s system.    

Latitude II Condominiums by a Lyon Homes Partnership: Washington Avenue @ Centre City Parkway
No changes from that reported last week: The remaining sections of the project are entering the framing phase of construction.      

Veteran’s Village
The installation of storm drain pipe along Escondido Boulevard has been completed. The #1 north bound lane of Escondido Boulevard is being kept closed to traffic in response to noise complaints from local residents due to the placement of steel plate in the roadway.   

Exeter Industrial Park  
The grading operation is continuing this week. Storm drain installation is ongoing with construction of inlet structures on site.  The project is located at 2005 Harmony Grove Road and is 5.4 acres in size. 

The project is idled this week. The project is located at 222 W. Mission Avenue 

Felicita Junction Star Bucks Drive - Thru
The grading of the site is complete. The new drive thru location is being constructed at the north west corner of Centre City Parkway and Felicita Avenue.




  • On 2-19-2018, Officers Herrmann and Lussenden saw a vehicle driving eastbound on Lincoln Ave., east of Broadway, with the sparks coming from the left front wheel.  The officers noticed the left front wheel ground to the brake rotor.  They attempted to stop the vehicle.  The driver refused to stop and a 20mph vehicle pursuit ensued for several miles.  The pursuit ended when the driver collided into the fence of the Henry Avocado plant.  The driver was transported to Palomar Medical Center.  A telephonic search warrant was written for her blood and she was charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol and evading. 
  • On 2-21-18, Officer Larsen observed a traffic violation in the area of Oak Hill and Katella Way and initiated a traffic stop.  A records check of the vehicle revealed the vehicle had been reported stolen in San Diego.  A high-risk vehicle stop was conducted and the driver was taken into custody without incident.  The suspect was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for possession of a stolen vehicle.
  • On 2-23-2018, personnel from the Gang Enforcement Team attempted to stop a vehicle in the area of Juniper St. and El Dorado.  The driver of the vehicle failed to stop.  A short vehicle pursuit ensued and ended when the vehicle collided into some bushes.  Both the driver and a passenger got out of the vehicle and ran. The driver was apprehended nearby. 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.     

  • 7 arrests were made
  • 11 citations were issued 

All of the officers from the COPPS Unit attend the training for the current deployment of the Neighborhood Transformation Project (NTP), named the City Square.