Nevada City gifted 43 acres for Deer Creek Park 2 project |

Nevada City gifted 43 acres for Deer Creek Park 2 project

The Nevada City Council accepted a gift deed for 43 acres of land as part of a settlement agreement that would move forward the stalled Deer Creek Park II development project.

The settlement agreement was arrived at between real estate development company Terra Alta and Nevada County, after the original plan for the project was opposed by the city and some residents when its final environmental impact report was certified in 2006.

According to county records, local residents were concerned about the impact the original 193-unit development — slated for the area just south of where Red Dog Road meets Crystal Wells Road — would have on traffic, parking, road maintenance and environmental quality.

Last year, the Nevada County Planning Commission approved a modified version of the project subject to the settlement agreement which brought the number of units down to just 62, among other changes that were meant to lessen the project’s impact. The commission also approved infrastructure for seven additional dwelling units on the lot the developer already put in, before finding out the site’s covenants, conditions & restrictions did not allow the additional dwellings.

Several Deer Creek Park residents at the time voiced concern over how the additional units might impact traffic, particularly for elderly residents in the event of a fire.

According to Nevada County Senior Planner Coleen Shade at the time, the units would add no more than 10 additional morning and night trips and 51 throughout the day in regards to impacting traffic. The settlement also called for the developer to create formal easement agreements that allow the Bear Yuba Land Trust to oversee and manage 335 acres of the area’s open spaces and grant public access to the area’s trails.

“Terra Alta has always allowed public access along those lines but the grant of formal easements will ensure in the future if the ownership changes, the property trails will always be available,” said Andy Cassano, Nevada City Engineering land use surveyor representing Terra Alta.

According to Cassano, the lots are planned to be sold as-is, with buyers having to build upon the lot.

The city would be responsible for the area along the channels while the Bear Yuba Land Trust would provide stewardship of the rest of the property.

According to Nevada City Engineering President John Baker, the acceptance of the deed by the city wraps up the completion of the first phase of the project, including infrastructure and improvements, with one or two more phases to come.

To contact Staff Writer John Orona, email or call 530-477-4229.

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