It's been more than twenty years since community leaders in Carlsbad have updated the city's General Plan, and now they're welcoming public input on a crucial part of the planning process – the Environmental Impact Report (EIR).
In order to stay complaint the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), each city in the state is required to have a General Plan in place which regulates nearly every aspect of residential and commercial development within the community, including public green spaces and transportation infrastructure. The EIR is crucial in determining the best approach to future development.
It's been nearly a year since the original draft of the current Environmental Impact Report was released in April 2014. After months of gathering feedback, a process which resulted in 291 letters from individuals, businesses, and organizations, recommended revisions were made to the report. Now, the new version is available for the next round of review on the City of Carlsbad's website.
On average, most cities tend to update their General Plan every twenty years or so, with Carlsbad's last revision taking place in 1994. City officials anticipate the current update will extend the planning horizon out until 2035.
The city began their feedback solicitation period on March 20th. Comments will be welcomed until May 4th, at which time staff members will take the recommendations into consideration and further revise the report. That revision will be resubmitted to both the Carlsbad City Council and Planning Commission for public hearings.
Nearly a Decade of Planning
Although Carlsbad hasn't updated their General Plan since 1994, the current revision is eight years in the making. In 2008, city officials began promoting Envision Carlsbad, an outreach program which included more than 8,000 residents and 100 organizations working together to develop a vision for the city.
After 18 public meetings, the Carlsbad Community Vision was released in 2010, outlining the public's thoughts on nine core values:
- Small-Town Feel and Beach Community Character and Connectedness
- Open Space and the Natural Environment
- Access to Recreation and an Active, Healthy Lifestyle
- The Local Economy
- Business Diversity and Tourism
- Walking, Biking, Public Transportation, and Connectivity
- Sustainability, History, The Arts, and Cultural Resources
- High-Quality Education and Community Services
- Neighborhood Revitalization, Community Design, and Livability
Armed with the comprehensive Carlsbad Community Vision, the city released their preferred land use concept, which provided plans for where future development should take place, in 2012.
Sharing Your Feedback on the EIR
Carlsbad city leaders are encouraging feedback on the proposed Environmental Impact Report be relayed to City Senior Planner Jennifer Jesser of the Carlsbad Planning Department. Emails can be sent directly to Jennifer.Jesser@carlsbadca.gov, while letters can be mailed to 1635 Faraday Ave., Carlsbad, CA 92008.