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Community input needed for proposed large-scale home and commercial development in Nipomo

Dana Reserve
Artist rendering of the proposed Dana Reserve project in Nipomo (RRM Design Group)

NIPOMO, Calif. -- Community input is being sought by San Luis Obispo County for the proposed Dana Reserve development in Nipomo.

On Wednesday, the County is holding a virtual public workshop where the large-scale mixed-use development will be discussed.

The meeting will provide an opportunity for community members to learn about the mix of uses, recreation and open space conservation, trails, and design elements of the project.

The Dana Reserve site is a highly-visible 278-acre parcel located just south of Willow Road and adjacent to Highway 101.

The currently undeveloped property also borders Pomeroy Road at the southwest, Hetrick Avenue to the west, and Cherokee Place to the north.

The project proposes 1,270 residential units, 100,00-to-200,000 square feet of commercial and light industrial use space with a daycare center and a small satellite community college campus.

"There is clearly a need for housing," said project developer Nick Tompkins. What we're trying to do, at least for a significant portion of this project is to hit a part of the market that is currently being missed. Housing is prohibitively expensive in general, and our hope is we can provide some inventory and by design, bring it in at price points where in excess of 50 percent of the homes that are on the site will be categorized and fit into the category of workforce housing, which in and of itself is not particularly cheap either, but it's more affordable than regular housing."

The plan also includes several miles of walking/biking/equestrian trails, open space, a large neighborhood park, a gathering community barn, and small pocket parks.  

With a project the scope and size of the Dana Reserve, it is already drawing many opinions from within the community.

"I think in the longterm it's going to be good for the area," said Curtis Wadle, who lives near the property. "I think growing is going to be more beneficial, especially if we can get to the size where we have Sheriff's substations or rec centers, so the kids have something to do. It's going to give some lower income people chances to buy some property and add some nice houses and actually improve traffic with some of the well planned roads that they're going to put through there."

Longtime Nipomo resident Lorraine Manosar also said she supports the project, but points out there are some drawbacks as well.

"If people like their privacy and if like the rural aspects of living in a community where there's lots of land, it gets a little lost when you have big developments," said Manosar. "More people, more crowds. That's goes along with having a development and having these homes built."

Other residents are worried about traffic and water impacts.

Tompkins estimates it could take three years or more for the project to earn final County approval.

He also said the long approval process will benefit the community since they will have a direct say in the process.

"This project is not there today and will be there tomorrow," said Tompkins. "This is a project that is going to take years to be built out, so it is going to come in over an extended period of time. One of the strengths of having it done in the fashion that we are is that we are doing it as a master plan community, so up front, you can dictate and set the guidelines about how this will actually functions, look, feel and operate."

The Dana Reserve public workshop is scheduled for Wednesday, March 24 at 5:30 p.m.

"The last thing we want to do is try and push something through without plenty of public input, and candidly, the more input we get, we think the better the project can become," said Tompkins. "I think it's important for people to take a real look at it so they can understand what's there and listening to the call the county is going to host will be beneficial because they'll come away with new ideas."

The meeting will be broadcast on via Zoom. Click the link below to join the webinar:

https://rrmdesign.zoom.us/j/97125479289

Or iPhone one-tap : US: +16699006833,,97125479289#  or +14086380968,,97125479289#

 Or Telephone Dial: US: +1 669 900 6833 

 Webinar ID: 971 2547 9289 

For more information about the Dana Reserve and the public workshop, click here.

California / Community / Economy / House & Home / Lifestyle / Money and Business / Outdoors / San Luis Obispo County
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Dave Alley

Dave Alley is a reporter and anchor at NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Dave, click here.

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