ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

  • We continue to schedule an increasing number of special events, both private and public, that are having a positive economic benefit in the community. I will provide information on a weekly basis for upcoming events:
    • This week:
      • Private Filming for Botox commercial – May 22, Dixon Lake
      • American Heritage Car Show – May 25,  Grape Day Park
    • Last week:
      • Fighting Eagles (SPHS) fun run/walk – May 18, streets
      • Escondido Street Faire – May 19, Downtown

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT UPDATES

Planning:

  • Environmental technical studies for the Escondido Asphalt plant expansion were satisfactorily completed last week and the project will soon move forward to the City Council.
  • The applicant (George Palacios) for the 3-lot Vereda Callada annexation has filed a modification application and the issue will be coming back before the City Council to review LAFCO imposed conditions to annex the substandard street into the city.
  • Staff is continuing to coordinate with New Urban West and LAFCO regarding surveying nearby residents to determine interest in annexing to the city as part of the proposed 65-lot Oak Creek project on Felicita Road.
  • As a safety precaution, the Queen Califia Magical Circle has been closed until repairs can be made to damaged tiles. The number of damaged tiles is quite extensive and will take a considerable amount of staff time to clean up.

Housing:

Housing staff is working with Interfaith regarding relocation of the sobering services in response to the requirement to vacate their current site by 8/15.

Building:

  • Last Thursday, Planning, Building, Engineering and Fire staff members came together to expedite review of a major structural revision for the Cheesecake Factory allowing a foundation permit to be issued that afternoon with a critical concrete pour scheduled for the next day.  This was a great example of a team effort by several departments.
  • Building issued 37 permits for the week with a total valuation of $315,903.
  • Projects at Contempo, Walmart, Westfield Mall Cheesecake Factory and Stone Brewery expansion and bottling facility continue to progress through the construction phases of their projects.
  • Photovoltaic permits continue to lead the permit activity for the year with 116 issued so far this year and 5 this month so far.

Code Enforcement:

Last Friday the Police Department discovered the out-building to the rear of the old Cocina Del Charro site had been forced opened and showed evidence of campers. Public Works staff was notified immediately and the building was secured immediately. This is another great example of a team effort by several departments. 

CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS

Oak Hill Site Improvements:

With the completion of the roadway widening, staff was directed to design a new striping plan which would take advantage of the recently completed widening. The new striping was installed this week.

1341 Oak Hill Frontage Improvements:

The only item remaining to be installed is the landscaping for this project.

Private Development

Wal-Mart:

On site construction is continuing for the building and parking lot improvements. The contractor is scheduled to begin the off- site improvements later this week.

Mission Avenue 69 kv Electrical Line:

The last 125’ of conduit was installed this past Thursday at the Mission Avenue and Enterprise Street intersection. With the underground portion of the project completed the contractor will shift from a night time operation to performing work between the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.  Monday to Thursday. The replacement of broken and damaged concrete improvements will begin this week and continue until Wednesday of next week. SDG&E has one final conduit package to complete along Ash Street. This work is not being performed by the prime contractor and will be started this week and be completed within 12 construction days.

Lincoln Avenue @ Midway Drive Gas Main Replacement and Testing Station:

The two cross connections were completed this past weekend without event. The contractor is now crossing the intersection at Midway Drive and Lincoln Avenue with two new gas mains.

Cox Communication Downtown System Upgrade:

Phase 1 was started this week at the intersection of Juniper Street and East Valley Parkway. The work should be completed by July 15.     

PUBLIC SAFETY

Police:

  • In observance of National Police Week approximately 175 employees were honored with lunch/ dinner at the PD’s Briefing Room last Wednesday.   
  • On Thursday of this week, Detective Damian Jackson will be recognized as EPD’s Crime Stoppers “Enough is Enough” Award.  This is based upon his work in 2012 (and still today) on a proactive operation to identify and arrest sexual predators who attempt to meet with minors as young as 13.  The operation also dealt with the child pornography industry and the use of electronic devices to send them to suspects.
  • Grape Day Park Task Force:

The Police Department continues its enforcement details several times a day in the park and surrounding areas.  Since the start of the increased focus, the police department has conducted  676 extra patrols in the park, 126 field interviews, 73 citations and 70 arrests.

Captain Benton met with Keith Callison who is representing a group of homeless interested in volunteering and working to help clean Escondido.  The group is being referred to Interfaith and Fellowship Center to coordinate their efforts.  In addition, Capt. Benton and representatives of Interfaith has scheduled a meeting with representatives of Empowering the Homeless including Frank Woolridge next week. 

Task Force members continue to receive accolades for the improved appearance and usefulness of the park.  Members have noticed an increase in families and others utilizing the park.  The new park benches and tables have been a great addition to creating a more inviting area.  However they do need to be moved around to provide optimum seating for parents to watch children on the play structure as well as other areas of the park.  The Parks Division will coordinate the move.   

CCAE has not reported any more graffiti or vandalism since the last meeting.  Capt. Benton and Mark Becker have met with representatives of CCAE regarding their current video surveillance system.  City Information Systems is currently evaluating the existing cameras in the park and surrounding areas and hope to restore operability to more of the cameras soon. 

Officers have encountered “Big Aaron” on a number of occasions and have found him to be abiding by all laws and regulations of the park.  As mentioned in the last report, the judge would not approve a geographic probation from the park as recommended by the Police Department, however he did receive other probation conditions.   Security at Signature Plaza and CCAE have been informed that if Aaron is seen violating the law, to contact EPD. 

Signature Pavilion – Classical Academy is moving into the Signature Pavilion area and will be another set of eyes on the plaza.  There have been no reports of vandalism or problems at the plaza recently.  Security officers continue to change their start time in an effort to keep the problems minimal.  Eddie Goldberg will be meeting with Latitude 33 to discuss partnerships (discounts) between the residents and local businesses to increase business and relationships. 

Latitude 33 – Ryan mentioned residents of the complex would like to be more involved in the community and are looking for volunteer opportunities in the area.   He also mentioned that the first of the new Catholic University residents will be moving in the next few weeks. 

History Center – Wendy Barker mentioned that the movies in the park sponsored by the History Center will start again in July, but is looking for possible sponsors. 

There were no problems reported by Classical Academy/ Boys and Girls Club/ Children’s Museum. 

Jay Petrek and planning division continue to work on providing a master plan for the park and installation of the new playground equipment.  With the large eucalyptus tree now removed, the plan is being revised to possibly incorporate portions of the remaining tree into the play structure.  

The next Task Force Meeting will be Tuesday June 11.