This Monday night, July 28 at 7:00 p.m., Friends for a Livable Fullerton presents a Public Forum to discuss concerns about the Downtown Core and Corridors Specific Plan (DCCSP) at the Fullerton Public Library’s Osbourne Auditorium (the windowless room on the west side). This is not a city sponsored event. It is intended as a response to the city’s plans, and as an informational session about the DCCSP.
Last night, despite myriad concerns about the DCCSP, the Planning Commission opted to go ahead and recommend the plan to the Fullerton City Council, albeit with the Commissioners’ many serious concerns noted in the report. The City Council will hear the item on August 5 and August 19, with a decision expected on August 19. Fullerton’s planning staff made numerous changes to the DCCSP in response to both public comments and Planning Commission concerns heard at the last meeting on July 9, but the general condition of the plan remains—to facilitate higher density development without the requisite transportation amenities to handle increased traffic and air pollution.
Last night members of the public objected to everything from the prospect of bad architecture with no public review, the acknowledgment by the plan’s authors that intersections already choked with traffic would only get worse with new development, and inadequate protections for historic resources. With the notable exception of Tom Dalton, Vice President of Fullerton Heritage, no other person spoke up in support of the DCCSP.
Recall that the DCCSP was paid for by a state grant for sustainable communities, but the City of Fullerton (you and the rest of the taxpayers around here) paid for the Environmental Impact Report (EIR). One persistent worry has been that the DCCSP would need to be completed in some form by a specific date in order to fulfill the requirements of the granting agency. The City Council will hear the item next month, already past the evidently soft deadline for the project’s completion. However, there is an equally persistent lack of clarity over exactly when, and exactly what, actions the City Council would need to take in order to be in compliance with the grant agreement.
Several Planning Commissions voiced the opinion that they needed more time to work out problems with the plan, but ran up against a wall of uncertainty about the importance of maintaining the current schedule for its consideration by the City Council next month. Planning staff had no clear answer to a specific question asked about whether or not the the City of Fullerton would have to send back the grant money (about a million dollars) if the DCCSP was not ultimately adopted.
Come to the free Public Forum on Monday, July 28 at the library to hear more and voice your own concerns about the largest Specific Plan in the history of Fullerton, and what it might mean to you.