CALL TO ACTION: On Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016 at 2:00 PM, Sacramento County will look at a new proposal to expand the Urban Services Boundary. The boundary was created in the early 1990’s to try to limit the sprawl of urbanization in the Sacramento region.
Please voice your opposition to this proposal at this critical time. Tweet, Call, Email, Write or Post on Facebook and tag County Supervisors if you can!
Attend the 2PM workshop in the Board of Supervisors chambers on Wednesday if you are able — all bodies and testimonies are appreciated!
We need to halt urban sprawl in our beautiful valley, not add to it. The proposal is not consistent with the Sacramento Area Council of Governments’ recently adopted transportation plan, or the Sacramento Air Quality Management District’s plan.
Read the article by Rob Burness of ECOS and published March 22, 2016 in the Sacramento Bee, summarizing the latest:
The Sacramento County Board of Supervisors is considering the entitlement request of North Natomas landowners to expand the Urban Service Boundary, amend the General Plan, prepare a specific plan, and rezone 5600 acres to allow for the development of a new suburban community of 55,000 people.
Why Expanding the Urban Service Boundary is Significant and Precedent Setting
Sacramento’s adoption of an Urban Service Boundary in 1993 represented one of the first California General Plans to define a long term boundary for urban growth in a metropolitan setting. It provided sufficient land within the USB for many decades worth of growth. The USB provided the potential, with carefully considered phased growth, to at least triple the unincorporated urban population in the County.
By and large the Urban Service Boundary has been an effective planning policy. Folsom did expand beyond the boundary south of US Highway 50—as a city it is not bound by the same policies—and the County approved one minor expansion for a truck stop along Interstate 80. When Elk Grove City tried to expand its sphere way beyond the USB, the boundary’s importance weighed in the issues brought before LAFCo and their ultimate decision to deny the expansion. The boundary was an important benchmark for the analysis that led to the Water Forum Agreement, and has been, as intended, a valuable tool for planning sewer interceptors and other urban infrastructure over the last 22 plus years.
The Natomas Project would expand the Urban Service Boundary to allow a new “city” of 55,000 people. It would send the message to other cities that the USB is just a line on a map and not a significant delimiter for urban development. For all of us who want to see responsible, efficient, phased growth that gives infill a chance, moving forward with the Natomas project at this time sends exactly the wrong message. So, for us and many Sacramento residents, moving the boundary IS a big deal.
ECOS submitted a comment letter on December 16, 2015 that can be viewed here.