FEATURED THIS WEEK
City Provides Recovery Assistance for Fire Victims
The Escondido Fire Department was contacted by a local family that were victims of a house fire this week (read more about the incident in the “Fire” section of this report). The family was especially thankful for the book they were given by Fire personnel, the "Red Book for Recovery" is produced for all agencies in San Diego County to give to victims of property damage outlining the recovery process. They were also given a gift card from the California Fire Foundation to help with immediate needs.
In keeping our City safe, clean, and efficiently run, we have a couple of more bits of great news. The City Manager’s Office and COPPS unit have been meeting with officials from Emanuel Faith Community Church to tailor their efforts to help the homeless towards strategies used by the City and away from merely feeding people in the park. This includes ride-alongs by Church members with the COPPS unit, and our staff visiting with the Church committee working on this topic.
COPPS officer Lew Shaver is to be congratulated for a specialized effort: A 58-year-old homeless man had been on the streets of Escondido for years. Officer Shaver took advantage of resources from the District Attorney’s office, the North Inland Regional Recovery Center, and Travelers Aid to resolve outstanding law enforcement issues and reunite the man with his family in Louisiana. Since the man had been the subject of police contacts on average of twice a month for the last seven years, this was a great use of resources, and a nice success story for this person.
3rd Annual Escondido Tamale Festival
Saturday, November 11, 2017 | 11am - 5pm | Grape Day Park
The Escondido Tamale Festival is a celebration of Tamales and all the great Latin foods that have become iconic staples of California's culture. It's a look back at the history of the Spanish and Mexican settlers who have influenced and contributed so much to our multicultural community, and a show of appreciation for the traditions which have so positively affected Escondido. Mark your calendars and come to Escondido in North San Diego County for some traditional fun and the best tamales in Southern California! For more information visit: http://www.escondidotamalefestival.org/
Congratulations to Escondido businessman, Lars Herman of Herman Construction Group on receiving the 2017 Veteran & Military Entrepreneur Award from the San Diego Business Journal.
(Click Image to Enlarge)
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 – West (ERTC) (Developer: James McCann) – A plan for a new two-story, 57,000 SF, 52-bed Palomar Rehabilitation Institute was submitted on July 31, 2017. The applicant submitted revised plans and a storm water management plan three weeks ago. Revised elevations were submitted to Planning on October 3, 2017. The applicant has been informed that civil plans are necessary.
- Centre City Commercial Center (Developer: Todd Dwyer) SE corner Centre City/Mission – The expedited plan check process for the grading, building and landscape plans and the final parcel map started on July 25, 2017. The grading and improvement plans for the commercial buildings have been approved and a pre-con meeting will be conducted this week. Comments on the carwash building plans were sent by Planning on October 2, 2017. The precise grading plan for the carwash lot was submitted two weeks ago.
- Escondido Self-Storage Facility (Developer: Brandywine Homes, Inc.) 2319 Cranston Dr. – The applicant resubmitted revised grading, landscape, and street improvement plans on September 15, 2017. Another revised grading plan was submitted several weeks ago. Planning has approved the grading plan. Engineering is readying the bond and fee letter in advance of issuing a grading permit. The applicant has resolved the previous fire flow issues.
- Exeter Harmony Grove Industrial Development (Developer: John Couvillion, Badiee Development) 1925 and 2005 Harmony Grove Road – This proposed combination of the previously approved Victory and Innovative Industrial Projects into an 11.04-acre site for a single-tenant 212,000 square foot industrial building was submitted as a modified Master and Precise Plan on September 25, 2017. The applicant submitted revised plans on October 16, 2017. A Planning Commission hearing is anticipated on November 28, 2017. Grading plans were submitted for concurrent, expedited processing on October 11, 2017. Building plans were submitted for concurrent, expedited processing on October 23, 2017. Engineering comments on the grading plan were sent out this week. Planning met with the project architect on November 2 to discuss remaining architectural issues.
- North American Self-Storage (Developer: Russ Colvin) 852 S. Metcalf – This project has participated in the expedited plan check program. The demo has been completed. Building plans were approved by Esgil, Planning and Fire the last week of June. The grading permit was issued the end of September. The applicant has not started construction. On October 16, 2017, the applicant submitted a modified Plot Plan application to remove the basement level and increase the building height to five stories. All departments are now reviewing the revised project and the applicant has been informed that a civil site plan is necessary.
- Micro-Filtration Reverse Osmosis (Developer: City of Escondido Utilities Department) SE corner Ash/Washington – The lawsuit challenging the project approval has been settled and it is expected that a contract for engineering design will be considered soon.
- 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. Staff sent a follow-up letter to the wildlife agencies on June 29, 2017, seeking clarification on the proposed biological mitigation requirements. Staff is now coordinating with the consultant to final the EIR and start the decision-making process. It is anticipated the Final EIR will be scheduled for certification by the City Council on December 6, 2017.
- Self-Realization Fellowship Center (Developer: John Pyjar, Domusstudio Architecture 1840 Del Dios Rd. – The CUP application was submitted on November 14, 2016. The applicant resubmitted revised plans and technical studies on May 19, 2017. Another resubmittal from the applicant was received on August 22, 2017. Comments from Engineering and Utilities were sent to the applicant last week and a follow-up meeting with the applicant occurred on October 4, 2017. A revised project submittal was received on October 20, 2017 with additional revisions received last week. Fire flow issues are being coordinated with Fire and Utilities. Staff is coordinating the next level of comments.
- Chalice Unitarian Universalist Congregation (Developer: Pete Bussett, Bussett Architecture) 2324 Miller Avenue – The applicant has been revising the project to respond to staff comments and meet the needs of the congregation. The Mitigated Negative Declaration completed a 20-day public review period on October 18, 2017. Final issues related to the Storm Water Management Plan are being resolved. A Planning Commission hearing has tentatively been scheduled for November 28, 2017.
- 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, and is now being distributed to other departments for review.
- Citron (formerly Stella Park) (Developer: William Lyon Homes) 63 condo units at 2516 S. Esc. Blvd. – 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. The applicant submitted the latest versions of the grading and improvement plans on November 6, 2017. Engineering and Building staff are working with the applicant to get construction of the model units underway.
- Wohlford (Developer: Jack Henthorne) 55 lots at 661 Bear Valley Pkwy. –City staff is currently working to complete negotiations on the terms for the Development Agreement and schedule the item with the Planning Commission for review and consideration, most likely in January of 2018.
- 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. The Draft EIR has a 52-day public review period that starts on October 16 and ends on December 7, 2017. The Draft EIR and appendices have been posted on the City’s website at the following link: Safari Highlands Ranch Specific Plan - City of Escondido.
- 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 recently regarding unresolved project design issues.
- 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 is in process. Demolition is complete and permits are ready to be issued once title to the site transfers to the builder in mid-December. The final map is scheduled for City Council approval on December 20, 2017.
- The Villages at Escondido Country Club (Developer: Jason Han, New Urban West, Inc.) 380 residences – The Planning Commission reviewed the Project application on October 24, 2017, and voted 5-1 to recommend approval to the City Council. The City Council hearing has been scheduled for November 15, 2017. This information along with project status, Final EIR and appendices, Specific Plan and other related information can be accessed on the City’s website at the following link: ECC - City of Escondido.
- North Avenue Estates (Developer: Casey Johnson) 34 lots at North Ave./Conway Dr. – 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. The applicant has reviewed drainage issues with the Engineering Division and a revised tentative map has been submitted.
- Aspire (106 condo units on Municipal Lot 1) and The Ivy (95 condo units at 343 E. 2nd) (Developer: Addison Garza, Touchstone Communities) – The proposal consists of three separate downtown project sites proposed for mixed-use, residential and parking garage 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. Subsequent meetings with the applicant and staff have been on-going.
- 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 meeting with the applicant team occurred on October 26, 2017 to discuss identified issues. The applicant submitted a Storm Water Management Plan on October 30, 2017.
- A total of 31 solar photovoltaic permits were issued for the week. The Building Division has issued 845 solar permits this year, to date, compared to 1,125 issued during the same time last year.
- Our building inspectors responded to 228 inspection requests for the week.
- Building has issued 199 single-family dwelling permits this year and 224 multi-family units. This compares with 57 single family dwellings and 88 multi-family dwellings for the same time last year.
- Projects nearing permit issuance are:
- 917 W Lincoln, 3 new apartment buildings, 9 units.
- 700 W Grand Ave Gateway project (former police building)
- The City Plaza three-story mixed use building at 300 S. Escondido Blvd. is setting finishes in the units in preparation for building completion the first part of 2018.
- The Meadowbrook, three-story apartment building with underground garage at 2081 Garden Valley Glen is preparing the building for final inspection.
- Escondido Disposal is requesting inspection for site walls and framing of the weigh station.
- The medical office building at 2125 Citracado Pkwy is now installing drywall and exterior lath.
- The medical office building at 1951 Citracado Pkwy has received inspection approval for drywall and they are now setting finishes.
- The Westminster Seminary at 1725 Bear Valley Pkwy is preparing for exterior shear wall and framing inspections.
- The children’s building for Emanuel Faith Church at 639 E 17th Ave has received inspection approval for the framing of the building. The Church of Resurrection at 1445 Conway is progressing through the framing phase of the building.
- The Veterans Village project at 1540 S Escondido Blvd has received underground plumbing, partial foundation and masonry inspections for the residential buildings.
- The new supermarket shell building at 999 N. Broadway has completed the exterior masonry walls, parapets and roof ledgers.
- The Ford dealership at 1717 Auto Park Way has commenced on the second phase of construction which includes the interior remodel and new showroom addition.
- The Latitude II multi-family residential development at 650 N. Centre City Parkway has received foundation inspection approval for Building 3.
- Plans were submitted for two individual single-family residences on Del Dios Highway and Peet Lane.
Public Works Operations
The October numbers of collected shopping carts is in, staff collected 435 carts this month compared to 464 last month. These carts have become a huge burden for staff as they are cumbersome and are often broken and need to be disposed of. Staff is currently working on a plan to help minimize the number of carts being collected by the Public Works team.
Valley Pkwy/Valley Center Road Widening Project
The bridge subcontractor is framing wall portions of the bridge abutments on both the north and south sides of the new bridge section. The concrete pour for the north side abutment wall is scheduled for Thursday of this week. The remain abutment wall will be poured on Monday, November 13. Excavation for the second of three pier footing is nearing completion this week. The Street Light contractor is installing conduit for the new street lights north of Lake Wohlford Road along the east side of Valley Center Road. The dry utility contractor is installing conduits along East Valley Parkway between Bevin Road and Lake Wohlford Road. A night time operation is scheduled for work through this heavily transited area beginning Sunday, November 12 from 8:00 p.m. to 5 a.m. This schedule will continue through Thursday, November 16.
Neighborhood Lighting Project
The contractor is potholing utilities in preparation of the installation of conduit for the new lights in the Elm/Washington Street neighborhood. The scope of work for the project includes the installation of 44 new street lights along with the replacement of 22 existing street light fixtures with the latest L.E.D. fixtures in 5 neighborhood areas.
2017 Street Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project
The concrete replacement of sidewalk and curb and gutter damaged by the trees root system is continuing along Lincoln Avenue between Rose Street and El Norte Parkway. Paving restoration is scheduled for Monday, November 13 along Ash Street between Rincon and Stanley Avenue.
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. To date, approximately 80% of the CMP storm drains have been televised.
Pradera - Lennar Communities
No changes from that reported last week: The final eight (8) home site along Wagon Wheel Court have been started.
Lexington Model Homes - KB Homes
The contractor is working on installing the last section of water main located on Vista Avenue near Nina Lane. This work requires the closure of the roadway between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. The residences were notified with door hangers which included information regarding the scope of work as well as the contractor’s information. Electronic message boards were utilized to notify the local residents of the work dates and times.
Citron Project by William Lyon Homes
No changes from that reported last week: The project is idled again this week. The project is located at 2516 S. Escondido Boulevard.
Tract 932 - Canyon Grove Shea Homes Community
Testing and videoing of the sewer system is ongoing. On site water lines are being tested and final connection will be made this week.
Latitude II Condominiums by a Lyon Homes Partnership: Washington Avenue at Centre City Parkway
The import of fill material is continuing this week; no off site construction is scheduled this week.
Flushing and additional testing of the project’s water improvements are continuing this week.
Tract 877 – Bernardo Ave. by Ambient Communities:
The first 2 homes are being framed this week.
Victory Industrial Park
The grading operation is idled at this time. The project is located at 2005 Harmony Grove Road and is 5.4 acres in size.
Escondido Innovation Center
The contractor is clearing the site of vegetation and trees in preparation for grading the site. The project requires the importing of 17,700 cubic yards of material. The project is located 1925 Harmony Grove Road.
No changes from that reported last week: On site construction of water quality basins is underway. The project’s waterlines were tied-in to the City’s potable system on Tuesday of this week. The project is located at 999 Broadway.
Spring Hill Suites Hotel/ La Terraza Boulevard
No changes from that reported last week: The grading operation is continuing this week with the construction of the block wall along the rear of the property.
- Through the MDA Fill the Boot program, firefighters go above and beyond the call of duty. Each year, more than 100,000 firefighters hit the streets asking citizens in their community to make a donation to MDA, helping them fill their boot with contributions. Off duty Firefighters from Escondido were able to raise $5,416.53 for this year’s MDA Boot Drive, far surpassing the amount raised the past 2 years. 14 Firefighters, Paramedics and Prevention Specialists collected donations at 2 intersections, Via Rancho Pkwy/SB I15 on ramp and Broadway/78 for approximately 2 hours on October 24th.
- On November 1, 2017 at approximately 5:14 PM, the Escondido Police and Fire Communication Center received a report of an oven on fire inside a mobile home at 2300 East Valley Pkwy (Imperial Mobile Home Park). A structure fire response was dispatched to the location. The first arriving engine reported a large amount of smoke coming from the roof of residence. Aggressive action by the firefighters contained and controlled the fire in approximately 30 minutes. The mobile home sustained major damage to kitchen with minor to moderate smoke damage throughout the home. There were no injuries to firefighters. The owner of mobile home was treated and transported to Palomar Hospital for possible smoke inhalation. In all, four fire engines, one truck, one rescue ambulance and one Battalion Chief responded to the fire. Escondido Police Units provided road closures and evacuations. A gift card from California Fire Foundation was provided for immediate emergency aid. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
- The City of Escondido Fire Department Senior Volunteers participated in the Food Drive for the Salvation Army. The Senior Volunteers donated time, money and canned goods towards the Salvation Army Thanksgiving dinner. On Friday, November 3rd, Senior Volunteer Coordinator Clint Sweet and Senior Volunteers Rosemary Patterson, Phil Weldemere, Cathy Tylka, Howard Glickman, Peggy Graf, Wayne Cooper and Bob Munnich presented Lieutenant James with their donation.
- On 11/01/17 at 01:39 hours, officers were dispatched to the area of Harding St and the flood control channel regarding a palm tree that was on fire. Officers and FD arrived on scene. FD put out the fire and officers checked the area for possible suspects. No one located.
- On 11/01/17 at 02:17 hours, a male adult victim walked into Palomar Medical Center with a stab wound to his shoulder. Victim stated he was at a party at Kit Carson Park and while trying to break up a fight he was stabbed in the shoulder by an unknown suspect. No further details.
- On 11/01/17 at 18:37 hours, a 30 year old white male, 6-03, thin build, and wearing all black, struck a Macy’s employee (220 E. Via Rancho Pkwy), in the eye causing minor injury. The suspect did this as he stole items from the store. An officer positively identified the suspect via surveillance video and knowledge from past contacts. The suspect left in an older, black Chevy Suburban type vehicle prior to police arrival.
- On 11/2/17, at 01:00 hours, Officer Larson stopped a vehicle at 8th Ave/Juniper for a several Vehicle Code violations. This same car (and one of the occupants) was recently stopped by an officer and firearms were located. Upon further investigation the rear passenger was arrested for being in possession of a loaded .38 revolver and methamphetamine. The front seat passenger was also arrested for being a felon in possession of loaded 9mm handgun.
- On 11/2/17, at 03:00 hours, an officer located a stolen vehicle heading into Valley Center. The vehicle yielded near Woods Valley Road and the female adult driver was arrested without incident for Auto Theft and Drug Possession. The male adult passenger was arrested for an outstanding parole warrant and Drug Possession.
- On 11/2/17 at 22:00 hours, an officer attempted to stop a motorcycle with two occupants at Washington Ave. and Rock Springs Rd. for both riders riding without helmets. A pursuit was initiated when the motorcycle failed to yield. The pursuit ended on Metcalf North of Lincoln Ave. Both driver and passenger fled. The passenger was apprehended immediately and after searching, and further investigation, the driver was also arrested. The motorcycle was an unreported stolen that had just occurred from Plan 9 Alehouse. Both were charged with Auto Theft and the driver for Felony Evading.
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.
- 3 arrests were made
- 14 citations were issued
- Officers took a male transient to the Greyhound Bus Terminal to be reunited with family in Louisiana. Officer Shaver, with the help of Deputy City Manager Bill Wolfe, was able to clear outstanding warrants for the male to allow him to get the bus ticket home.
- Took a Field Trip to City of Lake Elsinore to get a brief on their contract company that patrols the city daily looking for campsites to clean up. Code Enforcement and City Shops personnel also attended.