Jan 28, 2019
by Thomas Martin
There are a number of plans and projects coming to the Springs this year that were started in months or years past.
Springs Specific Plan – The “Plan” is a program to promote beautification and unity among various elements along the Springs corridor. The ideas that went into the plan were developed in part by residents who made suggestions in five separate workshops. In several respects the ideas discussed below are either part of, or relate to, the goals of the “Plan.” Steps have been taken to make the plan ideas a reality for the Springs.
Maxwell Park “Master Plan” - The proposal for upgrading and renovating Maxwell Park at Verano Avenue and Highway 12 is available for study locally on line at http://sonomacounty.ca.gov/Parks/ and at the Sonoma Valley Library, 755 West Napa Street. Residents may comment or critique the proposal by submitting comments in writing to Scott Wilkinson, Park Planner, 2300 County Center Drive, Suite 120A, Santa Rosa, CA. 95403 by February 8.
When the public review and CEQA review period ends February 8, the Plan will go to the Board of Supervisors for approval. Construction is expected to begin this summer. The plan for review includes a detailed map listing changes to expect around the park.
Construction will extend over a three (3) year period. Anticipated changes include the development of two baseball diamonds with synthetic turf, additional parking, tennis court lighting, a small and full size soccer field, a bicycle pump track, a dog park, pickleball courts, and sand volleyball courts. The layout of trails will not greatly change, but walking surfaces will be improved. Non-native trees are to be removed, and if replaced, it will be with native growth. Springs residents look forward to the completion of these changes that have been under discussion for several years.
Springs Village Affordable Housing – The first 80 units of affordable housing on the Vailetti property were completed last year. The second phase awaits construction. That will be forty units of affordable housing for seniors on adjacent property.
Springs Community Farmers Market – 2019? – Haven’t heard if the Springs Sunday Community Farmers Market in the Plaza next to the Post Office will continue or not. Many residents certainly hope it will return. Anyone have this information? Please forward to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Municipal Advisory Council – Supervisor Susan Gorin initiated the idea of forming a MAC (Municipal Advisory Council) in the Springs. MAC’s are bodies appointed or elected by a supervisor to advise the County regarding the needs and concerns of citizens and residents in unincorporated communities. There is a MAC in District 5 on the coast and there are two in District 4 in mid-north County.
MAC’s operate under authority granted to the County under the California Government Code. Members serve up to two year terms. The number of Commission members is set by the Board of Supervisors. Anyone wishing to serve should contact the office of District 1 Supervisor Susan Gorin (Susan.Gorin@sonoma-county.org) or her District Director Pat Gilardi (Pat.Gilardi@sonoma-county.org).
Restaurants and Gentrification – This past year several proposals were made for eateries and housing in the Springs. Among them was a combination noodle restaurant and affordable housing unit on the Lanning property. Up the highway at Calle del Monte, the Boyes Food Center is proposed for development into affordable housing and commercial stores complete with umbrella covered decks facing Hwy 12. There is also a second ice cream parlor and coffee shop on the Vailetti property between the new bicycle shop and credit union.
The former “Uncle Patty’s” is marked for demolition and reconstruction. Rumor has it that it will be a super pizza parlor. What’s your guess? Another demo derby is slated for the vacant structure that at one time housed the La Salette restaurant across from Mary’s pizza. Anyone know what is planned as a replacement? A perennial question mark is when will “Hamburger West” open its doors? Also, the best kept secret in the Springs is what plans exist for the Sonoma Mission Inn “Big Three” property? This prime corner at Highway 12 and Boyes Blvd. has been vacant for at least three years.
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