By Bill Glazier Review Editor
Published: August 12, 2014 09:09:00 PM
A project calling for more than 90 residential units in the heart of historic Mission Street will be presented by its developer on September 10 at the South Pasadena Unified School District headquarters.
Legacy Partners, a development firm based in Foster City, Calif., will host a community meeting “world café style,” as SPUSD Superintendent Geoff Yantz described it, in which the developer, architect, and representatives from the City of South Pasadena and SPUSD plan to set up tables and answer questions about the project to the public.
“People will be able to come and get their questions answered, be able to provide feedback and speak with all the entities involved,” explained Yantz about the 6:30 p.m. meeting next month.
The project is currently undergoing an initial study by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), and the superintendent explained that next month’s meeting is currently a part of that process.
“CEQA looks at the project and considers its potential impact, and makes a determination on whether an environmental impact report (EIR) needs to be completed or whether a negative declaration is okay, meaning there are no impacts,” explained Yantz. “My assumption is that it will [ultimately] go to an EIR just to be safe, even if there may not be any impacts vowed.”
“We hope to have some good feedback,” he stressed about the public meeting.
Providing a source of funding for the school district is the foremost reason why SPUSD officials want the development to someday get off the ground. “These are much needed dollars for our facilities,” stressed Yantz.
He said the City of South Pasadena will benefit from sales tax dollars when businesses open their doors along Mission Street as part of the project. Currently, a long 6-foot wall fronts the school district parking lot from Diamond to Fairview avenues.
The omission of storefronts has some in the community, including Yantz, as dubbing the area as “The Missing Gap,” adding, the project “should provide a bigger draw to Mission Street.”
The project’s proximity to the Gold Line light rail station, taking passengers south to Los Angeles and north to Pasadena, should help to entice potential renters.
Yantz sees the project as a win-win for the community. “If it’s done right, it could be a beautiful facility,” he said. “The mostly one-bedroom apartments will draw a certain population. I imagined there will be individuals who will use light rail to go downtown to work and return home. We’re talking about people who may not even want to own a car, or are kind of looking for a different kind of lifestyle because of public transportation and the proximity to it. It could really work out well for everybody.”
Local school district officials are working with Legacy Partners and the City of South Pasadena on the Mission Place to develop a mixed-use-project, which calls for 91 residential units and a few businesses located along Mission Street.
Underground parking will be accessible for those living at the residential site and working at the school district parking, along with those attending the weekly Thursday farmers’ market nearby.
For about three years, SPUSD officials and the school board have been investigating the possibility of leasing the parking lot property as a means of bringing in additional revenue to the school district.
Production companies shooting commercials and movies in the area often use the school district parking lot to park trailers and trucks.
Yantz said about $100,000 is generated each year for this purpose. With the elimination of the lot for film revenue, the district expects earn an additional $100,000 to $400,000 over that amount through a financial arrangement with Legacy, according to Yantz.
“We see it as a good project for us and the community,” he said.
Sub-Headline : Special Meeting September 10
ByLine : By Bill Glazier Review Editor