Jan 4, 2018
by Thomas Martin
2017 was an exciting year in the Springs! For the most part the Springs were spared being victims of the worst fire in 53 years (1964). This column put folks on notice in its June edition that residents should be on the alert and eliminate all extra grasses and brush around properties. Preparation, plus tremendous support from First Responders and Visiting Firemen, stopped the conflagration at our doorsteps. Thanks to everyone of you!
Forward and Backward… In 2017 we saw the completion of sixtyMid-Pen Affordable Housing units along Hwy. 12. We await word from Mid-Pen about the construction start for the additional forty units of senior housing. Hopefully all our newly housed Springs residents are happy in their new digs.
Springs Specific Plan – What’s Happening? A year ago in the January column we spoke of the impending “Springs Specific Plan.” The plan was to address land use, transport circulation, design, and develop facilities in an arc from El Verano to Agua Caliente. The plan called for beautification, plazas, and bike paths. A planning group from the southbay and a committee of fifteen (15) local resident advisors were to come up with the Plan. Unless this writer has missed it, no plan has been produced. We look forward to seeing the proposed changes to uplift our community.
Restaurants and Eateries… As we approach 2018 at least three new restaurants seem planned. Sondra Bernstein in partnership with Ken and Stacey Mattson plan to open a Ramen Noodle Restaurant on the former Lanning property next to theMission Inn employee parking lot off Boyes Blvd. No word when the old Uncle Patty’s will be torn down and re-opened as a jazzy pizzeria. Ten months ago we reported that West-Handmade Burgers would open in May. The building at 18375 Highway 12 has been painted and West has a sign above papered windows. What’s happening? Lourdes Alvarez in the Salon next door reports no sign of owners Nicole Benjamin andGarrett Sathre. Postscript: Still no announcement about the future of the Big 3. The Mission Inn has no report on the future of the former Woodleaf Store and Fountain.
Vailetti Property - The Vailetti Property Shopping Center betweenEl Brinquito Market and the Mid-Pen Housing Development is under construction.Steve Lanning, General Contractor, reports that when completed there will be a bank, ice cream shop, bicycle shop, Boost Mobile phone store, and a salon.
Currently passers-by see a structural skeleton covered with a protective skin of weather proofing material. When completed, hopefully in March or April, the walls will be vertical corrugated metal and standing seam metal roofs.
What about traffic for a project located next to a three way signal, a market, and a mobile home park? Mr. Lanning doesn’t believe there will be a problem since each facility within the center will have parking spaces. He further comments that this project is a major step to improve the quality of life in the Springs. Steve is correct. Good luck.
Sonoma Creek At Low Ebb! Effective this date (12/21/17) at a Springs collection point above Central Avenue there has been a total of 3.84” of rain for the rain year 2017-18. On the same date in 2016-17 14.40” of rain had been measured. Sonoma Creek was high and observers watched from the Boyes Blvd. bridge each hour. The total by September 30 was 49.34” In the prior year, 2015-16, 4.27” had fallen in the Springs by this date. The total that year was 26.21”.
A rain year is measured from October 1 to September 30. Over 140 stations report Sonoma County weather daily to CoCoRAHS (Community Coordinated Rain, Hail, and Snow Studies) at Colorado State University. Go to cocorahs.org. Rainfall in Sonoma County varies a great deal from Cazadero on the Russian River to south county communities. There are often significant differences between the Springs and stations as close as Sonoma and Glen Ellen.
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Community Meetings are scheduled for:
Calistoga: Feb 5 & 25,
Napa: Feb 5 & 20
Clearlake: Feb 8
Ukiah: Feb 13