By David M. Greenwald
Davis, CA – In light of feedback from the community, Mayor Will Arnold and Councilember Bapu Vaitla on Monday posted an update to the Long-Range Growth “Davis Development Rubric.”
The addendum, posted late on Monday, indicates three key changes:
- The rubric is contextualized to Davis and creates a foundation for the upcoming General Plan update.
- The rubric’s content evaluates and incentivizes the development of “neighborhoods of the future,” moving beyond minimum requirements.
- The rubric is simpler to understand, quicker to complete by applicants, and can be easily converted for use in public communication.
In addition, they argue that this creates a foundation for a General Plan update, with the “rubric as one tool among many—including CAAP, Downtown Plan, Housing Element, and others—to help evaluate projects in the interim until General Plan is completed.”
Thus they believe it “helps set clear, transparent expectations between the public and project applicants.”
They argue, “All current ordinances and planning requirements must be met… but the rubric evaluates and incentivizes features that are innovative and go well beyond current requirements.”
They add, “Current General Plan doesn’t reflect latest thinking in some areas, so rubric relies on standards from newer documents (Climate Action and Adaptation Plan, Housing Element, Downtown Plan).”
Moreover, addressing a key criticism, they add that the rubric is now “Contextualized for Davis in indicator selection.”
Gone is the overall composite score. Instead, there will be scores for each category.
“Within each category, only 3-5 indicators,” they note. “For now, indicators within each category are equally weighted.”
“Each question asks whether the project exceeds, by a reasonable amount, current mandatory standards. If mandatory standard doesn’t exist, ties expectations to latest planning documents (CAAP, Housing Element) and/or best planning practices in neighborhood development.”
They hope this makes it much easier to complete with a total of 23 questions.
They add that “all should be possible at this stage to answer or provide commitment to.”
They add, “This is a first draft that could be piloted now with development proposals in front of us.” Moreover, it’s a “living document: Commissions gave valuable feedback; items and weights can be altered as understanding of needs evolves.”