Tag Archives: community

West Sac council okays new community — minus the gate

‘The Promenade’ is located in the Southport Business Park,  near Cooper Island Road and Bridgeway Island (From City of West Sacramento staff report)

‘The Promenade’ is located in the Southport Business Park, near Cooper Island Road and Bridgeway Island (From City of West Sacramento staff report)

NEWS-LEDGER — DEC 31, 2014 —

By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

— A couple of larger issues — the desirability of gated communities and the density of local development — emerge during discussion of project  —

The West Sacramento city council has approved a 222-home subdivision in Southport. The project – which abuts Southport Parkway, the Bridgeway Island Subdivision and Savannah Parkway – was designed as a gated community, and approved last month in a 4-2 vote at the city planning commission.
Usually, that would be the last word for approval. But in this case, Mayor Christopher Cabaldon appealed that decision, calling it up to the city council for review. The council took it up on Dec. 17.
Gary Mandarich of Mandarich Developments told the council that his company was “expert” at projects like this one with high-density detached homes. The Southport project, called Promenade, is designed to put the 222 units onto 18.3 acres, with a homeowners association and a gym, pool and event room.
Mandarich used as an example his development of gated properties in other cities, which helped him reach a “higher profile” of buyer.
[adrotate banner=”37″]  “We went to the city and said ‘Look, when you are buttoned up against an arterial road, like Southport Parkway, you need gates. The consumers don’t want to go onto (their) roads and feel invaded by people with easy access. You put gates on it, it’s a beautiful project. . . The nature of our business is to build nice, boutique projects.”
(Comments cited in this article come from the city’s video feed of the council meeting.)
Mayor Cabaldon asked him if the project would be viable without gates. After a pause, Mandarich answered:
“We can have a project that is viable without gates. We don’t think it will be successful, but it could be viable.”

MAYOR CHRISTOPHER CABALDON is against having gated communities in West Sacramento  (News-Ledger file photo)

MAYOR CHRISTOPHER CABALDON is against having gated communities in West Sacramento
(News-Ledger file photo)

Cabaldon explained that gated communities are not in his vision of West Sacramento – although the city has one higher-end gated subdivision called The Rivers as well as a gated apartment complex and a gated cluster of homes on Bastone Court. Cabaldon said the city leaders essentially held their nose when approving the gate at the Rivers (which is open during the day to preserve public access to the river) back in 1996, when the project was known as Lighthouse. Said Cabaldon:
“There was widespread universal opposition in the community to the concept that a community which is full of neighborhoods which had been divided from one another repeatedly by the railroad tracks, by the freeway, and by the ship channel would voluntarily start to carve itself up, and this was offensive to the residents of West Sacramento.”
The council approved that gated community largely because it had inherited a development deal partly negotiated in advance by county officials, he recalled.
Mandarich, the Promenade developer, said that gating a community helped his target homeowners (such as single women raising children, and retirees) to feel safer.
Cabaldon said that whether gates improve safety is, at best, unclear in the research.
“These studies show that gated communities result in lower amounts of community participation, lower levels of community cohesion, a higher psychological sense of segregation – none of the things we are trying to accomplish,” said the mayor. “Personally, as I was in 1996, I am very opposed to the idea that we would approve gates.”
The city doesn’t currently have a formal policy about gated communities in the city.
Other opinions on the council varied as the five-member body deliberated about Promenade.

COUNCIL MEMBER BILL KRISTOFF prefers high-density single home project to a possible apartment complex (News-Ledger file photo)

COUNCIL MEMBER BILL KRISTOFF prefers high-density single home project to a possible apartment complex (News-Ledger file photo)

Council member Bill Kristoff liked the fact that the single-family project would take place instead of an apartment complex, which was what the zoning seemed to call for.
“I like the fact that it’s not an apartment complex,” he said. “I don’t have a problem if it is gated.”
Kristoff did worry about the smaller setbacks (the close distances between the homes and their neighbors) that was being proposed to accommodate the high-density housing.
Council member Beverly Sandeen worried that gating the project would be “about segregating and not having the open world that we love and cherish in West Sac.”
“I have been and will continue to be opposed to gating,” she said.
Council member Mark Johannessen called the design “a decent project for the city,” adding that he is “not really dead set against gating.”
Colleague Chris Ledesma said that you can have a high density project along a busy road – like the projects at Metro Place or Ironworks in West Sacramento – and it can work without a gate.
“What worries me about gated communities is the sense of segregation they do tend to breed, that somehow they are separate from the rest of the community and somehow they’re entitled,” said Ledesma.
Ledesma joined Johanessen and Cabaldon in worrying also about the precedent set by allowing this project to take a piece of land zoned for apartments and substitute a project with lower densities. They worried about “having to make it up later,” changing the zoning in other city properties in order to meet home-building commitments to the region and to the state, and in order to put enough people in the city’s “villages” to support community shopping and retail opportunities.
Kristoff seemed more defensive of low-density construction as a rule:
“One of the things I think we need to also remember is that if everything is high density, it is a slum, and it becomes one very quickly,” said Kristoff. “We have seen it built time and time again in other major cities. There needs to be that balance of higher density and lower density.”
Cabaldon rebutted that the reason you can ride a horse to the Target store in West Sacramento is because the high density developments that supported Target were built near the horse-owning properties.
The policy question about density was tabled for another day.
When Ledesma made a motion to support Promenade – but without a gate – the motion passed with a majority vote.   (Editor’s update: the final vote included a ‘no’ from Bill Kristoff and ‘ayes’ from the other four members of the council.)

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Free concert by West Sac orchestra

West Sacramento Community Orchestra (News-Ledger file photo)

West Sacramento Community Orchestra
(News-Ledger file photo)

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER —

The West Sacramento Community Orchestra invites you to a free concert of holiday favorites, 3 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 7, at the West Sacramento City Hall Galleria, 1110 West Capitol Avenue. On the program will be the “Hansel and Gretel Overture” from Humperdinck, “Christmas at the Movies,” “Sleigh Ride” and more.

You’ll have a second chance to catch the concert at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 9 at Centennial Methodist Church, 5401 Freeport Boulevard, Sacramento.

For information, call 991-5262.

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

Hundreds get help at ‘giveaway day’

Moises Castillo, a second grade student from Bridgeway Elementary School, volunteered to help give away clothes at the Children's Alliance 8th Annual Community Give-Away Day (Photo by Lori Aldrete)

Moises Castillo, a second grade student from Bridgeway Elementary School, volunteered to help give away clothes at the Children’s Alliance 8th Annual Community Give-Away Day (Photo by Lori Aldrete)

NEWS-LEDGER — NOV 26, 2014 —

From Lori Aldrete
Aldrete Communications
for the Yolo County Children’s Alliance

It’s a long way from Detroit to West Sacramento.  But for 37-year-old Latina Taylor and her daughter Jamaica Rayne, a student at Westfield Village Elementary, they are feeling the love of the West Sacramento community and the Yolo County Children’s Alliance.

As Latina collected her free turkey dinner, a blanket, toys for “Maka”, and clothes for herself and her mom, she repeated over and over, “Thank you.  Thank you!” to the volunteers helping more than 600 people needing a helping hand at the 8th Annual West Sacramento Community Give-Away Day on Saturday, November 22 at Westfield Village Elementary School.

Life hasn’t been easy for Latina the past few years as the single mom gave up her dream of finishing college at Sacramento State to care for her 6-year-old daughter with serious health issues.  She says she feels stereotyped when people look at her “outer shell” and “Coming here today made me feel good.  I like to help people, and for people to help me right now….” She paused as tears welled up in her eyes and added, “I’m blessed, so blessed.”

Latina Taylor and her daughter Jamaica (both at right) pick up a holiday turkey at the Community Giveway Day held in West Sacramento over the weekend. (Photo by Lori Aldrete on behalf of Yolo Children’s Alliance)

Latina Taylor and her daughter Jamaica (both at right) pick up a holiday turkey at the Community Giveway Day held in West Sacramento last weekend.
(Photo by Lori Aldrete on behalf of Yolo Children’s Alliance)

Latina and Jamaica aren’t alone.  For some children it will be their only coat to keep out the winter cold.  For 400 families it now means having a real turkey dinner instead of an empty refrigerator at Thanksgiving. And for hundreds of children who may not get many holiday presents, the annual event sent them home with new toys.

Yolo County Supervisor Oscar Villegas and West Sacramento City Council member Chris Ledesma joined numerous student volunteers from River City High School to greet residents and help them navigate through the large multipurpose room and the walkways outside to fill bags full of free food, clothes, toys and blankets.

Yolo County Children’s Alliance Executive Director Katie Villegas expressed her gratitude for the many people and organizations that donated their time and resources. “We need a lot of help to make this give-away day happen.  Each donation, no matter the size, helped send someone home knowing their community cares about them.”

Thousands of dollars were donated.  Two local community leaders, Yolo County Supervisor Oscar Villegas and Marty Swingle, owner of Cap West Realty teamed up for a two-tiered match challenge that resulted in $2,000 being raised.

In addition to hundreds of small individual contributions, “YCCA Children’s Champs” Tim Stewart and Sierra Health Foundation each donated $2,500.   Dr. Dick Huang, Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 447, and the Northern California Construction Training donated at the “Helping Hands” level of $250.

The community give-away was hosted by the Yolo County Children’s Alliance in partnership with the Yolo Food Bank, First 5 Yolo, West Sacramento Foundation, St. Joseph’s Mobile Mall and West Sacramento Grocery Outlet.

For more information about the event or to find out how to help with it next year, call the Yolo County Children’s Alliance at 530-757-5558 or 916-572-0560.

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  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

Consider new West Sac news, radio & internet nonprofit in your giving plans

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

Preserve the legacy.

Make sure West Sacramento is served by a first-class local newspaper and
information source for decades to come.A West Sacramento nonprofit group has tasked itself with creating a unique community-run news organization.

The new organization will use print media, radio and the internet to serve this community into the future. It will start from the traditions of pioneering West Sacramento journalist Julius Feher, the late founder of the News-Ledger.

You can help.

As the tax year ends, and as you consider your estate plans, please think about making a tax-deductible gift for the future of West Sacramento journalism. Your gift may help create a vigorous new news hub for your city as well as support the teaching of journalism skills in local schools and college classrooms.

You can help ensure that the tradition started by Julius Feher and the News-Ledger over 50 years ago continues -- better than ever, through a community-run multi-media nonprofit. Copyright News-Ledger 2014

You can help ensure that the tradition started by Julius Feher and the News-Ledger over 50 years ago continues — better than ever, through a community-run multi-media nonprofit.
Copyright News-Ledger 2014

What can you do?

— Write a tax-deductible check to “West Sacramento Neighbors Fair, Inc.”

—  Maximize your tax deductions now by giving gifts of cash, bonds or appreciated assets such as stocks or real estate.

—  Pursue tax advantages while protecting your security by using options like Charitable Gift Annuities, a Charitable Remainder Trust or Charitable Lead Trust.

—  Create a Donor Advised Fund and help decide how your major donation is used – while achieving maximum tax advantages.

—  Make a bequest, and leave a legacy.

JULIUS FEHER, the late founder of the News-Ledger, was respected for his sense of fairness in journalism and for his commitment to his hometown, West Sacramento  (Copyright News-Ledger 2014)

JULIUS FEHER, the late founder of the News-Ledger, was respected for his sense of fairness in journalism and for his commitment to his hometown, West Sacramento
(Copyright News-Ledger 2014)

Talk to your tax adviser and contact us about how to help our West Sacramento media and journalism project. Your gift may be publicized; let us know if you’d prefer not.

West Sacramento Neighbors Fair, Inc.
BOARD MEMBERS: Wesley Beers, President; Jim Brewer, V.P..;  Joe Goeden, Treasurer; Jolaine Beers, Secretary;  Charlotte Dorsey; Rick Hart; John Siden; J.P. Singh; Gina Spadafori

West Sacramento Neighbors Fair, Inc., 1040 West Capitol Ave., Suite B, West Sacramento CA 95691 (Tax ID 56-2311088)
Contact: Steve Marschke, c/o The News-Ledger;  (916) 371-8030 ; steve@news-ledger.com

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

Thanksgiving meals, household goods handed out while supplies last

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — NOV 19, 2014 —

The West Sacramento Community Giveaway Day returns this Saturday, Nov. 22, from 8-11 a.m. at Westfield Village Elementary School, 508 Poplar Avenue.

About 400 families will receive free food (a Thanksgiving dinner), clothing, blankets, toys and other items. Supplies may exceed demand. The event is sponsored by the Yolo County Children’s Alliance (www.yolokids.org) and partners.

Items will be handed out while supplies last.

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

West Sacramento orchestra offers free concert at city hall on Sunday

West Sacramento Community Orchestra (News-Ledger file photo)

West Sacramento Community Orchestra
(News-Ledger file photo)

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER —

The West Sacramento Community Orchestra will present selections from Puccini’s “Madame Butterfly” as well as pieces from Bruch, Rimsky-Korsakov and “The Producers,” at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 19, at city hall (1110 West Capitol Avenue). Free.

Alternatively, you can attend a free concert at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 21 at Centennial Methodist Church, 5401 Freeport Blvd., Sacramento.

For information on joining the orchestra, call 991-5262.

Copyright News-Ledger 2014

Today: a ‘Blessing of the Pets’

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER

Community Lutheran Church will host its annual pet blessing at 4 p.m. on Sat., Oct. 4, 920 Drever Street. Bring your beloved pet. Dogs must be on a leash, smaller animals should be in a carrier. Or you may bring a photo of your pet.

Copyright News-Ledger 2014