Atascadero Eagle Ranch project placed on hold

June 28, 2017

A plan to build hundreds of homes, a resort and more on the southern edge of Atascadero has been placed on hold. But despite significant opposition to the plans, the developer likely will not drop the project.

Jeff and Greg Smith of Ventura plan to develop a 3,457-acre property just outside the Atascadero city limits. The Smiths and their development firm Smith-Hobson LLC have been asking the city to annex the property.

Plans call for 494 single-family homes, 93 multi-family units, a 100-room hotel and resort, a village center, restaurant, park and equestrian staging area. Additionally, there would be miles of roads, multi-use trails and open space.

In February, Atascadero released a draft environmental impact report for the project, which has drawn hundreds of comments. A group of Atascadero residents is challenging the draft EIR, which is likely a major factor in Smith-Hobson placing the project on hold.

Also, financial analysis of the development proposal has reportedly revealed that the project would cost the city more money than it would raise.

“Significant new information became available over the last few weeks,” Smith-Hobson CEO David S. Armstrong said in a statement. “This information impacts the feasibility and marketability of the proposed project. The Eagle Ranch team asked the city to pause the project while they sort through the implications of this information. The project team is working as quickly as possible to assess the issues.”

Atascadero Community Development Director Phil Dunsmore said the developer asked for more time following hundreds of comments on the draft EIR and after getting a better understanding of necessary mitigation measures. The Eagle Ranch team has not indicated how much time they will need, Dunsmore said.

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Where’s the water coming from? I thought we were in a drought?

They’ll have my vote if the developer’s toss in;

Fleets of “park and ride” vans—-to keep the grade clear.

North County Homeless service center.—- since more people = more homeless.

A pet park. –No leashes.–the fun suckers have driven them off the beaches.

A lazy river. — who wants to walk a scenic trail when you can float a trail?

Horseshoe pits and beer drinking.—-enough said.

Alpaca’s –just because.

Micro-organic-farming—it’s the rage.

And lastly a fishery.

That should check all the important boxes and put this baby back on the fast track.

Typical no garroters I’m here close the door, now people like this get to pay property tax on land he can not use… I have seen such none growth people ..

What was that property zoned for when they bought it?

Don’t buy land zoned for one use and intend to use it for another….then complain about the tax bill on it because it useless to you.

If you check the property taxes for this property are more than likely less that homeowners since the property is probably in the Willams Act. A government gift to agriculture. At the same time all Atascadero property owners would more than likely see a significant increase with the cost of living in Atascadero since eventually they would be paying for all of the mistakes that the city would make. Yes, the city does have a record of making “mistakes”. Tthe WalMart roundabouts would have cost the taxpayers $8-10 million. And there are many other significant financial mistakes that have occurred over the years.

So as they say if you want to play get ready to pay.

If I recall former Atascadero city councilman Bob Kelley wrote an opinion article in the TRIB some time ago and had outlined what a financial disaster the Eagle Ranch project would have been to the city. It sounds like he was right. Too bad that he is still not around to protect the citizens of Atascadero from the negligent financial decisions that the city management continues to keep trying to do.

He seemed to be the rogue wolf of rational thought on the council until he left, sad! But really, they want to incorporate into atascadero; i.e., atascadero foots bill for roads, sewage, power lines, gas lines, water usage etc etc, which as stated, will loose “the general populous” money over years. Lets watch how over paid atascadero council votes yes on all of this craziness.

I went to the website for this proposal. It makes no mention of cost. This appears to be another retirement community of luxury homes, “multi family” homes, and a hotel.

My concerns:

1. The environmental impact. Do we have enough water for MORE properties when those of us who already live here are still having to cut our usage or face fines? Do we have the roads, the infrastructure?

2. Need. Do we NEED this?

3. Cost. Will this drive up home prices even more?

You might want to add:

4. Traffic impacts. Is a 2-lane freeway going to be enough? It sure is not now…

Yes, projects like this will drive up the cost of living — or diminish service levels below desired levels — due to the cost of the project and the lack of income it will produce. Our local “leaders” just don’t get that building new housing just jacks up prices. In SLO, a sharpie from out of town told the city they’d build workforce housing, but funny thing, once built the stuff was marketed as luxury student housing, $1000 per bed per month! It was such a success they’ve raised the price to $1100 per bed per month. So suddenly that’s the new going rate in town, and you see slum houses renting for $4000, $5000, $6000 per month. It’s not supply and demand, it’s commanding the market, costs driven upward by cost of new construction and that trickling downward to old housing. No SLO working family can afford those sorts of housing costs. Same effect on costs will happen with Eagle Ranch if built.

Oh, fear not in SLO. Our city geniuses are going to build lots more overpriced housing which will drive the market still higher — because “we need housing.” Who cares if we can afford it — the pols and bureaucrats get a line on their campaign sheets next election. And lots of contributions from developers and their buddies. Win win for pols and developers, not so much for the rest of us.