Council Demonstrates Commitment to Thorough Review of Innovation Park Proposals

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Council Demonstrates Commitment to Thorough Review of Innovation Park Proposals; Moves Forward on Way-Finding Signs

(Davis Chamber Press Release)

Last night, the Davis City Council approved several key contracts for evaluation of the Innovation Parks proposed on the City’s periphery. The Council also approved reinstatement of a Principal Planner position on City staff to engage directly with proponents of the Innovation Parks.

Continued planning and evaluation of Innovation Park proposals is consistent with the 2014-2016 Davis Business Community Shared Objectives for Collaboration with the City of Davis (Joint Objectives), adopted by the Chamber Board in conjunction with Downtown Davis and the Yolo Convention and Visitors Bureau. The City Council’s actions last night mark significant steps toward ensuring the proposals are evaluated to the degree necessary to realize the community and economic development potential these projects represent.

In addition to Environmental Impact Reports that will be required under California Environment Quality Act (CEQA), each of these projects will require an extensive degree of planning review and project management to properly assess the degree to which each will meet the needs of the community. “With its decisions last night, the City Council has clearly acknowledged the significance of the community’s decisions relative to Innovation Park proposals,” commented Jennifer Nitzkowski, 2014 Board Chair for the Davis Chamber of Commerce. “Through these contracts, and the reinstated Principal Planner, the City can ensure that its review of these projects is thorough and seamlessly coordinated.”

Last May, the City issued a “Request for Expressions of Interest” from parties interested in developing Innovation Parks. Specifically, the City looked to identify developers that want to build facilities that serve the research and technology sectors in Davis and create places for Davis technology companies to continue their growth and investment in our local economy. The City has received one application and is expecting to receive at least one more.

“We see the Innovation Parks as a potential means for expanding the City’s capacity to attract, grow, and retain companies in the technology, advanced manufacturing, and R/D industry sectors,” commented Matt Yancey, Davis Chamber CEO. “There is a tremendous amount of work left to be done. But with its consulting team in place and a staff position dedicated to working on the projects, the City Council has made the most prudent decision possible in managing the coming workload.”

Also consistent with the Joint Objectives, the City Council last night approved funding for a Downtown Way-Finding Signs project. These signs will help to better direct Downtown visitors to available parking, a key component to effectively managing the City’s Downtown parking supply and maximizing access for customers shopping Downtown merchants. The signs are currently in production and will be ready to install by mid-October.

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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