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IMPACTS OF CONEJO CREEK DEVELOPMENT

 

WHAT IS THE CONEJO CREEK DEVELOPMENT?

The Conejo Creek Properties project encompasses 740 acres of prime farmland at the bottom of the Conejo Grade between Camarillo Springs and Pleasant Valley Road. It is bounded by the Conejo Creek and Calleguas Creek. The project is planned as a mixed use of industrial buildings, condos, apartments, single houses, commercial, and retail space. It would include 2,500 residential units, 100+ acres of industrial buildings and 54 acres of office/ commercial use. It would be more than twice the size of Village at the Park.

 

HOW WOULD IT CHANGE THE CHARACTER OF CAMARILLO?

Sited on the 740 acres of agricultural floodplain at the bottom of the Grade, this parcel of land serves as the gateway into Camarillo and is the most visible parcel of open space left in Camarillo. It would forever fill-in our beautiful view of farmland and open-space as we come “home” down the Conejo Grade and replace it with a sea of roofs and concrete and a population increase of 10%. As documented in the draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) it would change the character of Camarillo from a rural setting to a more urban one.

 

HOW WOULD IT EFFECT TRAFFIC?

The Draft Environmental Impact Review (DEIR) estimates that, if approved, the Conejo Creek development would add an additional 40,948 car trips per day in Camarillo. According to Caltrans the current 101 Freeway operates at levels D and E. The proposed development would bring it to levels E and F. Caltrans considers level C to be the threshold for acceptable service on the freeway. The DEIR concludes that the impact to the U.S. 101 freeway would be Class I, significant and unavoidable.

Camarillo still needs to “absorb” all these other developments that have been approved to proceed along our 101 corridor from here through Oxnard. The Springville project, on the north end of our city (11325 residential units and 21,000 daily car trips), Sakioka Industrial Park (400 acres, 78,000 daily car trips), Wagon Wheel (1,500 units, 15,000 daily car trips), Riverpark ( 2,500 units, 20,000 daily car trips).

In addition, these developments in Camarillo are in the works, Camarillo Commons redevelopment on Arneill which has been approved , a 450 home project on the St. Johnʼs Seminary land and the Dawson redevelopment venture.

 

WHY WOULD THIS DEVELOPMENT BE DANGEROUS?

These 2,500 homes, plus 100 acres of industrial development, would be bound by the Conejo Creek to the South and Calleguas Creek to the North…a flood path area as noted in the FEMA 100 year flood maps. The Camarillo Sanitation Facility is located along the Conejo Creek (flows along the east side) inside the Conejo Creek Properties development area. A 2 mile long, 300 foot wide bypass channel along the Conejo Creek is planned to “lift” this area out of the floodplain.

However, this project will still end up surrounded on 3 sides by 2 waterways, draining 2 large watersheds to the Pt Mugu Lagoon Estuary. Instead of 2,500 homes constructed in a naturally occurring floodplain, a $2/mo sanitation fee already planned and approved by the City Council would protect the sanitation facility with a levee.

This large by-pass channel which would be dredged parallel to the Conejo Creek could potentiallyreactivate and release“legacy pesticides” such as DDT. This land was commercially farmed in the 40’s and 50’s when DDT use was widespread and common place. As with asbestos, if left undisturbed these pesticides lie dormant, but when disturbed and exposed to oxygen they become reactivated, toxic and released into the environment via air, dust, and water contamination.

 

HOW WOULD THIS DEVELOPMENT EFFECT BIRDS AND WILDLIFE?

The urban runoff generated from this development would flow directly into the Pt. Mugu Lagoon Estuary, the third largest wetlands estuary in So. California. The Pt. Mugu Lagoon Estuary is a critical brown pelican nesting ground and a migratory stopover for 600 species of birds. Urban/industrial runoff from development is the single, greatest source of estuary degradation and threat to wildlife health.

serving as the one point in our area for animals to “cross” the 101 Freeway

In addition, the Conejo Creek is the only wide-open passage under the 101 freeway for miles…serving as the one point in our area for animals to “cross” the 101 Freeway from the Santa Monica Mountains area on the coast to open spaces further inland.

 

HOW WOULD THIS PROJECT IMPACT THE NAVAL BASE IN VENTURA COUNTY? HOW WOULD THIS PROJECT IMPACT THE NAVAL BASE IN?

This 740 acres of farmland lies underneath the inbound flight path pattern into the Pt. Mugu/Port Hueneme Air Installation. The navy base has asked the Camarillo City Council to consider buffer zones in their general plan because development would result in greater noise and safety concerns and could potentially limit the base’s air Naval Base is Ventura County’s #1 employer with 14,000 jobs supporting testing and training operations, as has been the case at other military air installations.families and pumping money into our local economy. Do we want to see it at risk The Naval Base is Ventura County’s #1 employer with 14,000 jobs supporting of being downsized?

 

WHAT CAN WE DO? Let your city council and newspapers know how you feel!  

See our Tips for Letter Writing for ideas of what to write, and  names, addresses, and emails of where to send you letters.

“The People Are The City” – Camarillo City Motto

 Once this prime agricultural is paved over, there is no going back.

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