After a decade of public feedback, regulatory agency problems and numerous design changes, the Pleasanton City Council will provide input on the final conceptual plan update for Lions Wayside and Delucchi parks during Tuesday's council meeting.
Once that is done, city staff will begin finalizing updates to the Lions Wayside and Delucchi Park Master Plan update based on the conceptual plan and will present the final design and budget for the project to the council at a future meeting.
In 2014, the City Council at the time had adopted the master plan for both parks but could not proceed with any real design work as the plan was not supported by several regulatory agencies.
The agencies included: the Army Corps of Engineers, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Regional Water Quality Control Board.
According to the staff report, the reason these agencies did not support the original plan was due to concerns regarding the proposed undergrounding of 533 feet of Kottinger Creek in Lions Wayside Park -- the installation of pipe systems below the ground that would help transport foul drainage or rainwater flows to a sewage treatment facility.
The report states that upon trying to secure permits from government agencies with jurisdiction over natural resources, those agencies were concerned that the undergrounding would negatively affect the surrounding habitat.
"The agencies were concerned with the potential loss of riparian habitat and impacts on surrounding watersheds," the report states. "Due to these concerns, each of the agencies indicated they would not issue permits based on the submitted design and plans for Lions Wayside and Delucchi Parks."
Since then, staff have been working to modify the conceptual plan in order to meet the regulatory requirements and after years of feedback from the agencies, staff were able to come up with an updated conceptual plan.
That plan, which included the newly acquired land that the city purchased to the north of Lions Wayside (4363 and 4377 First St.) was presented to the agencies, which supported the new plan.
Then in February of last year, staff presented its final concepts to the Parks and Recreation Commission and then to the City Council in April -- both approved the plans and council proceeded to request staff to seek public input.
According to the staff report, some of the proposed changes to the parks include daylighting Kottinger Creek instead of undergrounding and relocating the creek further to the east, relocating the Chan Henderson Bicentennial Bandstand to be on the west side of the creek and reorienting the bandstand to face toward downtown.
Other changes could include redesigning to address the required removal of the Blue Gum Eucalyptus tree and revising the design to include the property to the north of Lions Wayside Park that the city purchased to provide more parking and landscaping.
The public outreach request was mainly to touch base with the public because of the fact that the park design plan has changed several times over the last decade.
A community survey was posted in May 2022 while two outreach events and one public meeting were also held.
"The conceptual plan mainly received positive feedback and support, although several residents were concerned with the project's costs, felt some design modifications were required, or were opposed to the project," the report stated.
The report noted, however, that only a minority of residents were opposed to the project as the majority were supportive.
"In general, the input received during the public outreach was positive and supportive of the conceptual plan with some requests for modifications or clarifications, such as modifying some pathway locations, including furnishings (e.g., bike parking, picnic tables, trash receptacles, etc.), providing a balance between parking and recreation for the properties that the city purchased on First Street, providing more shade, retaining as many trees as feasible, and providing more detail for the bandstand and areas around the bandstand," according to the staff report.
The City Council meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Tuesday (Feb. 7). The full agenda can be accessed here.
In other business
The city's COVID-19 local emergency declaration will be coming to an end after nearly three years as the council will be set to adopt a resolution to terminate the declaration.
This decision will come weeks before Gov. Gavin Newsom is set to repeal California's COVID-19 state of emergency declaration on Feb. 28.
The resolution will be voted on during the consent calendar, which are items that are routine in nature and are usually approved without discussion.
Along with the local emergency ending, the city's business assistance program will be ending -- the program was enacted during the beginning of the pandemic in order to assist businesses due to loss of income.
"With the widespread availability of vaccinations that has served to significantly decrease COVID case rates, county and state restrictions have been removed such that businesses have returned to full operations," the staff report states. "Adoption of the resolution will terminate the local emergency due to COVID and end the related delegation authority to the City Manager to award and execute contracts during the emergency as of February 28, 2023."
Staff is also recommending to extend the deadline date for the downtown parklet and outdoor dining installation grant programs to June 30, 2024 so that businesses can plan and apply for the outdoor dining installations with sufficient time to apply for the reimbursement grant.
According to the report, there is $250,000 remaining for each of the grant programs to provide funding for more than the anticipated number of applications.
on Feb 7, 2023 at 7:31 pm
on Feb 7, 2023 at 7:31 pm
I'm curious why staff is proposing reorienting the bandstand to face downtown? Wouldn't this orientation leave concert-goers at the park facing the backs of the performers?