EL NINO PREPARATIONS 

Information is now available on the city’s website (https://www.escondido.org/El-Nino-Preparations.aspx ) informing residents how to prepare for potential heavier than normal rainfall this year, along with information about the steps the City has taken. 

SPECIAL EVENTS 

Wine and Craft Beer Tasting at Cruisin’ Grand
Friday, September 18, from 5 to 8 p.m., local wineries and craft breweries will offer tastes of their finest selections on Maple Street Plaza. Featured Wineries & Craft Breweries Include:
Bernardo Winery
BK Cellars Urban Winery & Tasting Lounge
Espinosa Winery
Highland Valley Vineyards
Hungry Hawk Vineyards
Offbeat Brewing Company
Stehleon Vineyards
Stone Brewing Co.
Vesper Vineyards
Purchase Tickets
The cost for admission is $20 and includes 12 tickets. Each ticket good for 1 oz. wine and/or 2 oz. beer taste. Tickets may be combined to equal full glasses of wine/beer. 21 and over only. IDs will be checked upon entry. No one under 21 permitted inside the tasting area.  Proceeds will benefit Ubiquitous Music, a non-profit organization in Downtown Escondido providing music programs in underfunded schools. 

For information about other  activities taking place in Escondido, please visit www.visitescondido.com 

WATER CONSERVATION GOAL EXCEEDED AGAIN
For the third consecutive month, City of Escondido water customers continued to reduce their water consumption.  In August residents reduced their water use by 33%, well above our target goal of 20%. 

PUBLIC WORKS UPDATE

  • As of Friday, September 11, 2015 the Drainage Crew completed the cleaning of five sections of various channels, and also started cleaning the main channel. They have cleaned approximately 5,579 linear feet of channel. They have removed 594 yards of combined vegetation, silt and trash from the channels. On Tuesday, September 15, 2015 they began the Indian Wells channel which begins at Washington Avenue and goes under Industrial and Auto Parkway to the main channel. This section of channel is expected to take 2 weeks to clean.
  • On Sunday, September 13th the Tree Crew trimmed 88 trees located in the parkway, removed one diseased iron bark eucalyptus tree from the median between Orange and Maple and pruned the remaining iron bark eucalyptus trees in the median between Maple and Orange. The tree crew will be scheduling the pruning of the remaining median iron bark eucalyptus trees between Maple and Juniper in the next several weeks. In addition the Tree Crew has pruned and removed seed pods from approximately 400 queen palms at various locations Citywide. The Urban Forest Inventory contains approximately 5,146 queen palms. By the end of the month they will have maintained approximately 20% of the queen palm inventory. 

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT 

  • Major Projects Update:
    • Oak Creek (NUW) – A LAFCO hearing date has been tentatively scheduled for October 5, 2015.
    • Amanda Estates (NUW) – LAFCO approved the reorganization (annexation) at their meeting on August 3, 2015.
    • Centerpointe 78 Commercial – The Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) has been released for a 45 day public review period ending September 28, 2015. The Draft is EIR is available at the following link:
    • http://www.escondido.org/centerpointe-78-commercial-project.aspx
    • Pradera - Grading is underway. A fee deferral agreement has been approved. The variance to reduce wall setbacks was approved by the Planning Commission on September 8, 2105.
    • Zenner – The annexation was approved by LAFCO on Sept. 14, 2015.
    • Kaen Planned Development (2516 S. Escondido Blvd.) – Comments have been provided on the revised planned development submittal for “Stella Point Condominiums”. The applicant is pursuing selection of consultants for preparation of numerous technical studies and the CEQA document which is anticipated to be a mitigated negative declaration.
    • Wohlford – A letter has been sent for the proposed 55-unit residential subdivision and planned development at 661 Bear Valley Parkway advising the applicant that the application is incomplete and identifying necessary submittals to continue processing. The applicant has informed staff that a revised application addressing the necessary submittals will be delivered to staff this week. The applicant is coordinating with staff regarding a Specific Alignment Plan for Bear Valley Parkway and is conducting technical studies. The Request for Qualifications for consultant preparation of an EIR will be released upon resubmittal of information needed to deem the application as complete. Tribal consultation meetings have been completed.
    • Latitude II – The project was approved by the City Council on August 19, 2015. Staff is waiting for the applicant to submit grading plans, which are behind schedule.
    • Shea Homes (Tract 932) – Staff approved the substantial conformance determination for the revised tentative map for the 179-lot residential subdivision known as Hidden Valley Ranch. The revised grading plan is under review. The Precise Plan application was submitted on Aug. 6, 2015, and will be scheduled for a future Planning Commission meeting to include a review of proposed park amenities as well as minor front-yard setback reductions for 9 lots. The project proposes 8 different model floor plans, each with three architectural styles. The applicant is pursuing purchase of mitigation credits at Daley Ranch.
    • Safari Highlands – The tentative map and specific plan application have been routed to outside agencies for comment. Staff is contracting for an extension of staff for engineering services. The applicant has agreed to contract for the preparation of a draft Municipal Services Review and Sphere of Influence (SOI) update. . The City of San Diego has requested additional time to provide preliminary comments, and had expressed concern regarding the proposed use of Zoo Road for emergency access. Notices were sent this week announcing a public agency scoping meeting to be held 3-5 PM on September 24, 2015 in the Mitchell Room to discuss the scope of the EIR.
    • Felicita Development, LLC - The proposed planned development includes the phased development of a 140-unit hotel, an 80-unit extended stay hotel, a 120-bed assisted living facility and a gas station and car wash located at the southeast corner of Felicita Rd. and Gamble Lane. Additional technical analysis and coordination is needed to address traffic, biology, water and sewer service, geotechnical and storm water concerns, along with a market study for the proposed uses. A letter addressing items and technical studies needed to complete the application has been sent. Staff is coordinating with the applicant regarding a date for a neighborhood meeting.
    • EDI – The CUP modification to expand the existing facility was approved by the Planning Commission on August 25, 2015. Staff is reviewing post-approval plan submittals including storm water and landscape plans.
    • Westfield Theater – The Economic Development Subcommittee authorized expedited processing of the modification to the planned development for the proposed 10-auditorium movie theater. The project will bypass the Planning Commission and will be directly considered by the City Council at a future public hearing. A draft Mitigated Negative Declaration has been submitted and is under review and tribal consultation meetings have been completed. Revisions to the design of the proposed storm water improvements are needed.
    • Paseo Escondido – The Phair Company application for a mixed-use planned development for the property at the southwest corner of Ash Street and Washington Ave. (currently owned by the City) is under review. The proposed project consists of 26 one-bedroom and 96 two-bedroom apartments (122 units total) in three four-story buildings, and two 5,000 SF commercial buildings (10,000 SF total) oriented around an outdoor plaza. Additional submittals required to complete the application.
    • High Pointe (Palos Vista Neighborhood 3) – Staff is reviewing revised landscape and grading plans in order to prepare a bond letter.
    • Valiano (County Project) – Engineering staff met with County staff to discuss traffic improvements needed to address anticipated traffic distribution on City streets.
    • Springhill Suites – The proposed planned development at 300 La Terraza Drive includes 4 stories, 105 suites, a small conference room and an enlarged lobby for serving continental breakfast. Grading and landscaping plans were submitted for review on September 9, 2015.
    • Del Prado –The project involves a Planned Development containing 113 attached residential townhomes, recreational facility, pool, and open space areas located at the southwestern corner of Brotherton Road and the Centre City Parkway frontage road. A formal application was submitted on September 10, 2015, and routed for initial department comments.
    • BMW Dealership – A Precise Plan application to expand the existing dealership showroom an additional approximately 4,000 square feet and enhance the building façade at 1557 Auto Park Way has been routed for comments and is tentatively scheduled for Planning Commission in October.

Building Division: 

  • The Building Department issued 57 permits for the week with a total valuation of $326,021.
  • 26 photovoltaic permits were issued for the week.  Building has issued 882 solar permits so far this year compared to 441 issued at the same time last year.
  • Building inspectors and counter staff had a very busy week with inspections averaging 36 inspections per day with 30 inspections on Friday and counter contacts averaging 42 per day with 28 on Friday.
  • In addition to the expedited solar permitting now available, residential roof top solar projects that qualify to be expedited, can be accepted electronically through e-mail. More information is provided on the city’s website.
  • The Black Angus restaurant at the North County Mall is anticipating a late September opening and is getting ready for a final building and fire inspection.
  • The 76 unit condominium complex at 2412 S Escondido Blvd is in the framing stage on all 4 buildings. 
  • The Meadowbrook Village 3 story apartment building has received underground utility and partial foundation inspection approval.
  • Permits were issued for the new Taco Bell restaurant at 627 N Escondido Blvd.

Code Enforcement: 

  • As of September 14th, the total number of open code enforcement case is 366 cases, with a backlog of an additional 69 cases not yet opened for assignment and investigation. During the prior week, 13 new cases were opened, and 57 cases were closed. A total of 1 Public Records Requests (PRRs) were processed, for a total of 88 PRRs processed this year to date. One new full-time Code Enforcement Officer has been hired who started work on September 14th. Recruitment is underway for three vacant positions, including one full-time and two part-time officer positions and one Code Enforcement Assistant to assist with the backlog. 
  • Last week the Business License Division received 33 new applications and 167 renewals, and issued 18 new licenses. 

CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS

FY 2014-2015 Maintenance Project:
The totals to date are 798,003 square feet of ARAM, 2,351,978 square feet of slurry, 154,674 linear feet of crack fill and 466 tons of hot mix asphalt to repair damaged street throughout the project. The project is slated for completion on Thursday, September 17 except for the reinstallation of roadway markings and striping which will be affected by recent rains.                   

Private Development 

Bear Valley Parkway between Boyle Avenue and San Pasqual Valley Road (County Project):
The roadway widening of the southern portion of Bear Valley Parkway between Suburban Hills Drive and San Pasqual Valley Road (SR78) is continuing this week. Work will continue on the storm drain boxes, as well as the sidewalk and traffic signal modifications at Bear Valley Parkway and (SR78). New improvements are being installed at the Boyle Avenue end of the project this week. 

2412 South Escondido Boulevard:
Onsite construction of new homes is continuing this week. 

Pradera - Lennar Communities:
The grading contractor is continuing the mass grading of the project.  The import of dirt material is continuing this week. There are modified work times to provide safe passage during the school hours as well as drop off and pick times. The offsite improvement for water main construction and testing is proceeding with work located along Lehner Avenue.

  • The review of the 3rd submittal of the perimeter improvement plans for Stanley Ave. and Ash Street was completed on August 27th.
  • Lennar has signed and recorded interim street dedications for all 5 interior street R/Ws to allow SDG&E and other utilities to proceed with their design and installations.
  • The reviews of the 1st submittals of the Final Maps for Streets “D” & “E” were completed on Sept. 1st.
  • The reviews of the 1st submittals of the Precise Grading plans for Streets “D” & “E” were completed on Sept. 8th

St. Mary’s Church:
The water line construction is in the testing stage.

Future Capital Projects

FY 15/16 Street Maintenance Project:
With the current street maintenance project wrapping up soon, efforts are being directed toward next year’s street maintenance project.  Maintenance zone CS will be the area of focus.  The boundaries of this zone are 5th Avenue to the north, Felicita to the south, the I-15 to the west, and City limits to the east.  Staff has met with the Utility Department to discuss potential storm inlet improvements that could be addressed with this project, and is meeting with Public Work Maintenance staff later this week to identify problem sidewalk and pavement areas that take significant staff time, and could potentially be addressed with this project.  Staff will also be working with Utility agencies over the next few months to identify their upcoming project locations within the zone.  A draft street list is anticipated by the end of the year, and bidding by early spring. 

El Norte Bridge/Median Project
This project constructs a second bridge over the Escondido Creek just west of E. Valley Parkway, adds a signal for pedestrian crossing at the creek bike trail, and makes pavement repairs, traffic signal upgrades and median improvements from E. Valley Parkway to Washington Avenue.  Earlier this week the pedestrian crossing design was resubmitted after making revisions in response to staff feedback.  Staff will review this design and provide comments.  Staff reviewed SDG&E’s preliminary design to underground utilities in the area of the bridge, and submitted them for revisions.  Staff continues to work with SDG&E toward an agreement to complete undergrounding work as part of this project.

PUBLIC SAFETY 

Police:

Events: 

  • Police personnel attended the Cruisin’ Grand “Heroes Night” on September 11.  There was a lot of support from the community and very good responses on Facebook.
  • Detective Jeff Udvarhelyi received an award from ASIS for his work as an investigator.  Last year’s “Creeper” series (prowler who came into the bedrooms of girls and touched them) was mentioned and the focus of Jeff’s award.