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Housing project closer to reality

The first of four major developments for Grass Valley has emerged from a two-year study hiatus to a point where environmental and public review can begin.

But the Grass Valley City Council made it clear Thursday night the application for the 65-acre, mixed-use SouthHill Village is OK for now, but is far from a done deal. The next step of environmental and public reviews is expected to take anywhere from one year to 18 months.

“This is no endorsement of your project,” council member Lisa Swarthout said. But she and other council members unanimously accepted the application of developer Paul O’Sullivan and local engineer Dale Creighton to build on the property that has been used for mining, a mill and other industrial uses for 150 years.



The council was pleased that O’Sullivan brought them a revised plan that brought more business park and commercial use to the site than first proposed. O’Sullivan’s plan originally called for 283 housing units and about 42,000 square feet of business park.

That has been switched to 122 housing units and 192,000 square feet of business park to meet the council and city’s philosophical needs for future land use.




Major questions still exist, such as whether yet another Safeway will be a part of the site. Council members said there is still a need for another grocery store downtown should Safeway establish itself at Brunswick Basin as planned and at SouthHill Village.

The project could also spawn another interchange just south of McKnight Way to handle Highway 49 and La Barr Meadows Road traffic. Area officials are awaiting more data from the SouthHill project to see how big a new interchange might have to be.

The council will hold another similar hearing for the Loma Rica Ranch development project Monday night at 7 p.m.

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To contact Senior Staff Writer Dave Moller, e-mail davem@theunion.com or call 477-4237.


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