Coronado City Council Approves Next Step In Golf Course Recycled Water Plant Project - Coronado Eagle & Journal | Coronado News | Coronado Island News: Coronado City News

Coronado City Council Approves Next Step In Golf Course Recycled Water Plant Project

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Posted: Thursday, November 14, 2019 3:34 pm | Updated: 3:42 pm, Thu Nov 14, 2019.

The next step for the ‘Coronado Golf Course Modification Project,’ which certainly has a more lilting tone to it than ‘Coronado Recycled Water Plant Project,’ was unanimously approved by the Coronado City Council at their meeting of Nov. 5, 2019. Specifically the approval included an initial environmental study and a request for authorization from the City Council to proceed with the preparation of a mitigated negative declaration for the project.

A mitigated negative declaration is essentially the city saying, ‘Others may think this project has challenges, but we’ll make it work.’ The technical documents would eventually lead to a legally required CEQA document.

In fairness, although the recycled water plant is the driving element of the project, there are also items specific to the renovation of the golf course included in the scope of work. The items include the reconfiguration of several golf tees, greens and fairways; a new 5,400 square foot turf maintenance facility; and a 940-square foot chemical storage building. The entire project is expected to cost $24 million.

For my money, Glorietta Boulevard is one of the prettiest and most scenic streets in the city. Two residents spoke during the public hearing, expressing reservations about the project. Their objections included cost of the construction, the aesthetics of the new construction, possible odors emanating from the recycled water plant, visual impacts and the possible negative impact to the value of their homes.

City Manager Blair King said, “Our intention is to make this as invisible as possible and much of it will be underground. We preferred to move the golf maintenance facility off Glorietta, reduce our footprint, and make more land available to the golf course.”

The Recycled Water Plant project is seen by the city as a means to keep the city’s parks, traffic medians, and the golf course watered during probable future droughts. King promised there would be more city staff outreach to the residents who live in close proximity to the golf course.

On the financial front, the City Council received an interim financial report for FY 2018-19 which indicates there will be excess general fund revenues over expenditures by a total of $2,054,647. City Director of Administrative Services Jim Krueger said, “The City continues to be blessed with being in good financial condition.” Some of the city’s fund accounts had higher than expected losses, specifically the Strom Drain Fund, which lost $396,442, despite about $1 million coming from the City’s General Fund to keep the fund in the black. King added, “The staff is bringing forward an assessment of the Storm Drain Fund before the end of 2019.” The City Council voted 5-0 to accept the Interim Financial Report.

Another long-standing project of the City has been the pursuit of making the Five Points traffic area, located in front of and around the Coronado Tennis Center, safer for pedestrians, cyclists and cars. According to the Staff Report on the project, data collected in October 2017 reflects the intersection’s daily traffic volume includes 14,000 vehicles, 280 cyclists, and 500 pedestrians. And despite those numbers, the intersection has an average of one reported collision per year over the past decade. Another statistic is there is one accident per every 1.8 million vehicles passing through the area.

After the city spent $50,000 on a traffic study of the Five Points area, the council didn’t know exactly what to do with the collected information. The staff recommendation for the Nov. 5, 2019, meeting was to install a centerline stripe and turn arc along the northbound path of travel to Pomona Avenue as well as an in-street pedestrian crossing warning sign within the crosswalk of the north leg of Pomona Avenue. The costs of the materials and installation would be borne by the City’s Public Services Streets Division and would total less than $1,000.

Part of the decision on how to proceed was the unknown, which is what impact the new Navy Coastal Campus Facility will have on the traffic flow in the area. Another possible issue would be if changes made to the streets in the area would re-distribute traffic to Pomona from Glorietta.

Councilmember Whitney Benzian who lives in the neighborhood, was in favor of an aggressive approach to re-designing the area and said, “I think something should be done. We have the opportunity to do something neat and special. I look at this as an entrance to Coronado. We need to do something. It’s not financially reckless to enhance the beauty of the city. I will not be supporting the staff recommendation, but I want something to happen.”

Councilmember Bill Sandke was in favor of a larger project, including the addition of bulb outs and greenery to the intersection. He said, “We do have some drainage issues there and we can incorporate that with some above-ground greenery and stones that could filter the water.”

On the other side of the coin, Councilmember Marvin Heinze said, “This is one of the safest intersections in the city and I’m not sure why we are changing this. I agree that it’s messy, but it works. I can support the yellow stripe. It doesn’t hurt and it may help, but I am not excited about the re-design of this intersection.”

Councilmember Mike Donovan added an amendment to the staff recommendation, requesting a traffic volume study before and after installation of the yellow stripe and the pedestrian sign. Donovan added, “Let’s not wait a year to take the data.” Mayor Richard Bailey said, “I’m surprised we haven’t heard from more people. I don’t feel there’s a strong consensus from the neighborhood. I like the staff recommendation as an incremental step. There is nothing that prevents us from coming back and revisiting the issue.” The staff recommendation, plus the addition of the traffic volume study passed 4-1 with Benzian voting against the motion.

A related motion followed and was introduced by Donovan which called for an analysis of traffic calming options on Glorietta Boulevard in conjunction with the motion which was just approved. This motion passed on a 3-2 vote with Benzian, Donovan and Sandke in favor, and Bailey and Heinze voting against.

Other actions taken during the meeting, which lasted two hours and 48 minutes, included:

The Council decided to kill the concept of creating a dog park in the Village area of Coronado by a unanimous vote. Chairman of the Parks and Recreation Committee Akshay Sateesh wanted the council to approve a feasibility study of six of the possible sites for a dog park. However the Council agreed with the staff that no single site in the Village satisfies the criteria for a dog park and no further analysis was needed.

The City awarded a contract to American Asphalt South in the amount of $581,645 for preventative street maintenance for FY 2018-19 and FY 2019-2020. A discussion followed regarding adding street markings that would be added during the asphalting. The markings include sharrows on Tenth Street between Orange and C Avenues; sharrows between Glorietta Boulevard and Adella; and a Class II bike lane on Tenth Street between C Avenue and Adella.

The council agreed to enact a ban on gas-powered leaf blowers in the city, which would have an effective date of Jan. 1, 2021. In addition, electric leaf blowers could only be used from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily in the city. The motion passed 3-2 with Benzian, Donovan, and Heinze in favor. Bailey and Heinze voted no.

Free parking was extended in Coronado for the Christmas shopping season to include Friday, Nov. 29, 2019, through and including Dec. 25, 2019. The motion, which includes free parking in all commercial zones in the city, passed unanimously.

The Council approved the concept of undergrounding utilities in the area of the Coronado Beach Resort, which has 2,700 time share owners who pay property taxes in the city. The city would pay for half of the undergrounding and the Coronado Beach Resort owners would pay the other half. Blair King said to the council, “This wasn’t contemplated when we brought the policy to you. This is unique and we wanted to bring the project to you because it was outside of the policy. We’ll bring the project back to you for approval.”

The next meeting of the Coronado City Council will be held Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019, at 4 p.m. City Council meetings are held at City Hall, located at 1825 Strand Way in the city.

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