This is a first in a series of articles designed to bring El Dorado Hills voters up to date on the background, issues and progress being made on Measure E, which will be on the ballot for November 3, 2015. Measure E states:
Should the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors re-zone the approximately 100 acres of the former executive golf course in El Dorado Hills from its current land use designation as “open space recreation” to a designation that allows residential housing and commercial development on the property?
Voting “NO” on Measure E will send a strong message to the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors that the voters do not want to rezone the old Executive Golf Course at the intersection of El Dorado Hills Boulevard and Serrano Parkway. In other words, that property should remain as open space and recreational.
The original development of EDH began in the early 1960’s. The 100 acres of the El Dorado Hills Executive Golf Course (EDHEGC) were originally zoned by the county as open space (OS) in the subdivision maps approved for EDH at the time. To develop the golf course, Allan Lindsay, the developer, had to get a special use permit from the county.
In June, 1970, Article XI Sec. 7 was added to the California Constitution. It required cities and counties to adopt General Plans for land use. Later that year, Governor Reagan signed the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) legislation into law. The first and subsequent zoning designation in the County General Plan, including the newest update, has always designated the original EDHEGC site as OS.
In 1979, the Mansour Company acquired Lindsay’s interest from Hancock Insurance Company. They had acquired ownership of EDH after Lindsay went bankrupt in the early 70’s. All of these transfers included the original EDHEGC and its zoning remained OS. Mansour sold the land where Serrano is located to what is now Parker Development in 1989 and in 1990 the El Dorado Hills Specific Plan (EDHSP) was approved by the County.
- Serrano’s access from El Dorado Hills Boulevard was originally proposed to be extended at its intersection with Wilson Boulevard. It was changed to become Serrano Parkway.
- Mansour sold the original EDHEGC to Serrano to be part of the redesigned entrance to Serrano. It remained zoned OS and was not part of the EDHSP.
- Parker Development (Serrano Associates LLC) did extensive upgrades to the appearance of the original EDHEGC as part of their entrance into Serrano.
- Due to poor planning by not doing traffic studies they wer required to spend an additional 3 million dollars to build a tunnel under Serrano Parkway to connect the two parts of EDHEGC so golfers would not be at risk crossing this main thoroughfare.
In 2007 the original public EDHEGC was closed. At this time, Parker Development alleged it was not economically viable to continue operating it. It was still zoned OS. The irony of this was Parker Development ignored the EDHSP and did not develop the public golf course that was included in the plan to be located in one of the Serrano Village areas. They instead built houses on what was supposed to be a public golf course for the use EDH and other nearby residents.
Parker Development now wants the county to rezone the original 100 acre EDHEGC to include high density housing with a small park. Parker has yet to provided the amenities required by the EDHSP. Unfortunately the county has not enforced Parker Development’s compliance with that plan but instead approved housing on what was supposed to be a public golf course.
Parker Development has already benefited from the loss of open space in EDH by not developing the public golf course that was specified in the EDHSP in 1990. The county Board of Supervisors has not required Parker Development to replace the open space lost due to that decision.
Now Parker Development wants to develop the EDHEGC with 793 residences and take away the last open space from the residents of EDH. Once it is developed this beautiful piece of open space will be gone forever.
What are your thoughts? Please leave a reply (scroll down).