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Newhall renovation plan gets preliminary approval

first_img “I think what we are looking for is a nice mix, things that have a hometown feel, stores and restaurants, in combination with unique things you would not see at a mall,” she said. The goal would be to draw customers from outside the area as well as local shoppers. Rogers declined to elaborate on her wish list of tenants or to reveal which developers or retailers have come forward, but she said there has been significant and steady interest even before a plan has been formally approved. The draft plan will be shown Tuesday to a select group of real estate brokers, bank officials and former leaders of large land companies – “people who can bring an enormous amount of resources to the table,” Rogers said. About $7 million has been earmarked by the city for improving the area, mostly for public works, she said. Some money will be spent for outreach and marketing in trade journals, though Rogers did not say how much. The council’s decision Tuesday night will burnish the bank accounts of property owners in the specific plan’s zone. The increase in density permitted by the plan, to be reflected in a zoning change, allows developers to build three stories where only one has been allowed. “If you have a 15,000-square-foot site and you’re able to build 45,000 square feet (under roof), you certainly have a property that is more valuable,” Rogers said. “Being able to go up three stories high without having to provide parking becomes much more valuable.” The particulars of building public parking structures are still being hammered out, but the structures are expected to be wrapped around retail shops, providing close-in parking for customers. Judy O’Rourke, (661) 257-5255 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week Weste, who has long championed the plan, heralded it as a tool of smart growth, with the nearby Metrolink station serving as a transit hub for commuters and shoppers. “A lot of cities are … re-energizing, bringing a resurgence to ‘old town’ areas that were great places once,” she said Wednesday. “Let’s not let it sit there and languish. That is the direction we are going in.” Though Councilman Frank Ferry reiterated his concern that an unintended consequence could be displacing current residents, he voted in favor of the plan. Planning commissioners had tinkered with the plan before recommending it to the council, which left its own indelible imprint on the document. “The council added the provision that any development that occurs will be sensitive to the surrounding community,” Mayor Cameron Smyth said Wednesday. Plans are in the works to unharness the economic potential of the area, said Carrie Rogers, the city’s economic development manager. After listening to comments from local business operators, she said she will propose, during the city’s midyear budget process, a market research study for the area. Rogers said the study, combined with active talks with commercial real estate brokers, should attract desirable tenants. She said care will be taken in ensuring sensitivity to the surrounding community while serving the city’s overall needs determined in demographic surveys. SANTA CLARITA – After much fanfare and debate, the City Council has agreed to adopt a plan to renovate downtown Newhall and transform it into a village of shops and civic buildings appealing to pedestrians. On Tuesday, the panel voted 4-0 in favor of the draft plan, expected to be formally approved by the council on Nov. 22. Councilwoman Laurene Weste abstained to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest because she lives near the project area. “We’ve reached a point where the council has recognized, in order to redevelop and revitalize downtown Newhall, it needs to provide developers with the tools and benefits so they want to come and bring their projects,” said senior planner Jason Smisko. “In the absence of this plan, in the last five years you really haven’t seen developers come forward with urban village-type projects in downtown Newhall. “Because of the council’s vision and the adoption of this plan, you have developers licking their chops now to propose projects that are consistent with the specific plan,” he said. last_img

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