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City Manager's Update, March 31, 2012

Fireworks, Costco, earthquake drills and more.

FOURTH OF JULY FIREWORKS: The city has received two more donations towards funding the fireworks for the . We are close to our goal of $32,000, having collected $30,770 to date, and are grateful to all contributors. We are still accepting contributions; to donate please call (949) 493-5911.

CONTRACT CLASSES: The spring Hometown Happenings newsletter is available to view on the city’s website or a hardcopy is available at , the , or the Community Services Department. All classes and activities are listed, so take a peek and pick something fun to do this spring.

: The upgraded and improved Mission Grill (former Pedro’s Tacos) is nearing completion.

The developer has pulled permits and is currently in the framing stage of constructing 16 detached single-family residences near San Juan Hills High School. The three model homes and 1-acre park are complete.

Developer Taylor Morrison is currently grading the 28-acre site to develop 132 detached condominiums. The developer intends to begin building the model homes in April, with anticipated completion in June.

The project is nearing completion with Costco completing final items on their correction list. Costco has installed additional trees and more shields on light poles near the Villa San Juan Mobile Home Park, completed directional signage installation, and is finalizing interior improvements.

Committee Chair Robert Williams (Planning Commission and Design Review Committee member) is scheduling kick-off meetings with City staff and the SDG&E team in preparation for the anticipated April 30 SDG&E submittal of their to the California Public Utilities Commission. Once the application is submitted, the draft environmental impact report becomes public and the Aesthetics & Mitigation Team can move forward.

The environmental impact report, master plan and form-based code will be presented to the City Council at their next regular meeting on April 3.

EAST OPEN SPACE PARK: Staff moved forward with the review process for the park with a joint Open Space, Trails & Equestrian Commission and Parks Recreation & Senior Services Commission on Monday, March 26.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN-LIEU FEES: On March 28, 2012, the Housing Advisory Committee reviewed the current affordable housing in-lieu fees formula and made recommendations to the City Council members for their April 17  meeting.

EARTHQUAKE DRILL: On March 17, the city conducted a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) simulated earthquake drill as part of the completion of another CERT program that is offered every six months. This drill provided residents and members of the business community with the opportunity to learn how to respond to an earthquake in their neighborhood or place of work. Participants set up a neighborhood command center, put out small fires, rescued victims, provided basic medical treatment and practiced working as teams. There were about 60 people involved in this drill that included support from Orange County Fire Authority Station #7 and high school students that played the part of injured victims. The entire drill was conducted in the rain, which added to the realism.  

DEL OBISPO STREET BRIDGE WIDENING: The contractor continued working on installing inserts for dry utility hangers, which will be set in the deck concrete. They worked on constructing forms for the bridge concrete barrier rail. They finished placing and tying steel for the bridge deck. They installed screed float rails that will assist in grading and leveling during concrete placement of the bridge deck. Bridge deck grades were surveyed. The contractor made adjustments to the deck grades due to downward deflection which occurred after all of the bridge deck reinforcement was placed. The contractor also asphalt paved the widened area of Paseo Adelanto south of Del Obispo Street. They will come back to finish paving the area later in the project. The contractor also installed guard rails along the parapet wall by the bike trail along Paseo Adelanto north of Del Obispo Street. The project completion date is expected in June 2012.

EAST OPEN SPACE LEMON GROVE SITE IRRIGATION SYSTEM AND WATER SOURCE CONNECTION: Installation of the irrigation controller, electric meter pedestal, irrigation lateral pipes and related appurtenance for the site is complete, with the exception of flow sensors and the fertilizer injector that will be installed in coordination with the establishment of electrical power to the site by SDG&E. Electrical inspection for meter release is expected shortly, which will allow SDG&E to proceed with final electrical work at the meter pedestal to power up the system. Contractual paperwork for tree planting is also in place to allow the contractor to begin planting related work as soon as electrical power for the irrigation system is established.

SUN RANCH CREEK PROJECT: The city of San Juan Capistrano has completed preliminary plans to construct drainage improvements within the city’s drainage easement which is situated west of the Sun Ranch development, located off Del Obispo Street, south of Calle Aspero. The proposed project consists of the installation of approximately 1,500 linear feet of buried 48-inch diameter reinforced concrete pipe (RCP) storm drain pipeline along the overgrown drainage course. The improvements within the easement will also include construction of an all-weather access road along the south edge of the easement, establishment of a restored drainage channel that will be vegetated with native wetland and riparian habitat, and additional landscaping, retaining walls and fencing. The improvement will provide storm protection to neighboring properties while providing a natural cleaned-up ravine and water course.

Staff held a “stakeholders meeting” on March 13, along with project consultants. Eight residents attended the meeting to learn more about the project and pose questions. Staff has also been holding site meetings with residents to discuss the project impacts specific to their parcels. This open communication and partnership will continue through the construction of the project.

RAILROAD QUIET ZONES/GRADE CROSSINGS: Orange County Transportation Authority staff and consultants made a presentation to the Transportation Commission on January 11, on the operation of the “queue-cutter” traffic signal on Del Obispo Street at the railroad tracks. The purpose of the traffic signal is to prevent vehicles from backing up onto the railroad tracks from the adjacent intersections. However, the new signals have caused traffic delays. OCTA consultants are studying the operation of the signals to eliminate the long delays, and have hired a traffic engineer who is expected to present solutions to the city in the next two weeks. Staff followed up on the status of this item as well as the ghost trains with OCTA’s CEO Will Kempton and he has assured staff that he is addressing these issues.

PAVEMENT REHABILITATION IMPROVEMENT: The project includes placing asphalt concrete overlay on Camino La Ronda (Phase 1) from La Novia to Via Fierro, including the side streets Paseo Rita, Rancho Viejo Road (Phase 2) from Ortega Highway to north of Junipero Serra Road, and Malaspina Road. Also, the project calls for slurry coating of the alleyways in Capistrano Villas II & III (Phase 3).

The contractor completed asphalt concrete overlays of Phase 1 and 2. The start date of the alleyways work is pending the contractor’s agreement to be in place with Capistrano Villas II & III HOA’s for the private portion of Phase 3.

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