West March Upper Plateau

Summary

SCH Number
2021110304
Lead Agency
March Joint Powers Authority
Document Title
West March Upper Plateau
Document Type
NOP - Notice of Preparation of a Draft EIR
Received
Present Land Use
Vacant Property - Former March Air Base Weapons Storage Area
Document Description
West March Upper Plateau Project Project Description The proposed Project consists of a Development Area and a Conservation Area. The Development Area includes the redevelopment of the former March Air Force Base (AFB) munitions bunkers. The proposed Development Area would include the construction of a ring of seven Business Park parcels, three Mixed Use parcels, one Industrial parcel, and two Public Facilities parcels, surrounding two Industrial parcels, an open space area with two small adjacent parking lots, two smaller open space areas, and a small park for recreational users. The proposed Project consists of a Development Area and a Conservation Area. The Development Area includes the redevelopment of the former March Air Force Base (AFB) munitions bunkers. The proposed Development Area would include the construction of a ring of seven Business Park parcels, three Mixed Use parcels, one Industrial parcel, and two Public Facilities parcels, surrounding two Industrial parcels, an open space area with two small adjacent parking lots, two smaller open space areas, and a small park for recreational users. The four Business Park parcels to the north would be a total of 34.50 acres, the Business Park parcel to the east would be 9.38 acres, and the two Business Park Parcels to the south would total 22.47 acres Similar to all other Specific Plans in the March JPA planning area, the three Mixed-Use parcels would include a variety of land uses but would not include the development of residential units. The three Mixed-Use parcels would be 10.77 acres, 26.60 acres, and 5.45 acres and would be located along the west side, just east of the Barton Street extension, and along the southeast corner of the Development Area. The two Public Facility parcels would consist of a 2.12-acre Western Municipal Water District sewer lift station to be developed along the east side of the Development Area just south of Cactus Avenue, and a 1.41-acre utility facility located southeast of the Western Municipal Water District facility. The three open space areas would consist of a larger open space area and two smaller open space areas. The larger open space area would be 50.00 acres and would consist of trails for recreational users. The larger open space area would be located directly east of the Barton Street extension and just south of the park area. Two small parking areas would be located on the eastern edge of the larger open space area to provide access for park users. The first smaller open space area would be approximately 11.98 acres and would be located directly north of the four Business Park Parcels. The second smaller open space area would be 2.48 acres and would be located south of Bunker Hill Drive, between one of the Mixed-Use Parcels and the two Business Park Parcels, as well as along the southern perimeter of the proposed Development Area from Barton Street to Cactus Avenue. The open space parcels would provide further buffer to the Conservation Area. The small recreation park area would be approximately 10.00 acres and would be located west of Barton Street and directly north of the larger open space area. The small recreation park area would include park amenities such as a playground, picnic area, and exercise stations. The proposed Development Area would also include on-site trenching to interconnect with existing water, wastewater, storm drain, natural gas, and electrical facilities that are currently stubbed out at the terminus of Cactus Avenue. The proposed development will extend these utilities along Cactus Avenue to the Development Area (Figure 4, West Campus Upper Plateau Project Site Plan, of the Initial Study). In addition, construction of the Development Area would include relocating several existing on-site utilities, including a 30-inch gas line that traverses the Project site. In addition, the proposed Development Area would include perimeter landscaping consisting of a minimum 30-foot-wide landscape buffer along the northern, western, and southern Development Area boundary maintained by a Landscape Lighting and Maintenance District. In addition, the improved park area, perimeter slopes, and street parkways will be maintained by the Landscape Lighting and Maintenance District. All landscape planting will be drought tolerant and irrigated by recycled water. The proposed Development Area would remove 14 of the 16 military bunkers, which were previously used for munitions storage by March AFB prior to March AFB’s realignment in 1993 and are currently used for fireworks storage by Pyro Spectaculars. The Project would also remove existing dirt roadways connecting the bunkers. The two military bunkers that would not be removed would be preserved for potential ongoing historical preservation or ongoing reuse within the Conservation Area. In addition, the proposed Project also includes relocating the existing water tower. The Conservation Area would provide a buffer of at least 300 feet on all sides of the Development Area, with a larger buffer to the south and east of the Development Area. In addition, the Conservation Area includes the two bunkers that would be preserved for potential ongoing historical preservation or ongoing reuse. As previously noted, to further protect the Conservation Area, the Project proposes a minimum 30-foot-wide landscaped buffer on the proposed parcels to the north, west, south, and southeast of the development. The currently existing service roads within the Conservation Area (Figure 6, Settlement Agreement – Area for Potential Development, of the attached Initial Study) may continue to be utilized by the public for passive recreation as authorized by the March JPA, but public vehicular access would be prohibited. The following approvals would be required for the proposed Project: General Plan Amendment: The General Plan Land Use Map designated land uses within the Project site are Business Park and Parks/Recreation/Open Space. The Project proposes to redesignate the site’s land uses as follows: increase Parks/Recreation and Open Space (P/R/OS) from approximately 122 gross acres to 453.7 gross acres1, eliminate approximately 622.5 gross acres of Business Park designated property, eliminate approximately 63 gross acres of Industrial designated property, and adopt the Meridian West Upper Plateau Specific Plan (SP-9) on approximately 351.0 gross acres, approving a mix of Business Park, Industrial, Mixed Use, Public Facility, Streets, Parks, and Open Space land uses. The Project also proposes to redesignate 2.9 acres of Business Park to Public Facility to accommodate an existing water storage tank operated by Western Municipal Water District. In addition, the approximately 445-acre Conservation Area will be recorded. The amendment would modify the General Plan Land Use Plan, Table 1-1 (March JPA Planning Build Out); Exhibit 2-1, Transportation Plan; and Exhibit 2-3, Transportation Road Systems. The amendment to the Transportation Element of the General Plan will incorporate the following changes: extend Cactus Avenue west to Barton Street, extend Barton Street from Alessandro Boulevard to Barton Drive, extend Brown Street from Alessandro Boulevard to Cactus Avenue, add Arclight Drive, Linebacker Drive, Bunker Hill Drive, and Airman Drive. Specific Plan: The Project proposes adoption of Specific Plan SP-9 consistent with applicable requirements in California Government Code Sections 65450–65457 and March JPA Development Code Chapter 9.13 containing development standards, design guidelines, infrastructure master plans, maintenance responsibilities, phasing schedule, and implementation procedures necessary to develop the Project site consistent with the requested General Plan Amendment designations. The proposed Specific Plan will address land uses, zoning, and design guidelines. The proposed land uses within Specific Plan SP-9 include 43.08 acres of Mixed Use, 66.35 acres of Business Park, 143.34 acres of Industrial, 28.86 acres of streets and roadways2, 0 acres of developed Parks/Recreation/Open Space, 64.46 acres of undeveloped Parks/Recreation/Open Space, and 3.53 acres of Public Facilities. Zoning Designation: The Project site has not previously been given a zoning designation; therefore, the Project proposes zoning consistent with the requested General Plan Amendment and Specific Plan designations of Mixed Use, Business Park, Industrial, Parks/Recreation/Open Space, and Public Facilities for the site. Plot Plan: Concurrent with the General Plan and Zoning Amendments, the Specific Plan, and the Tentative Tract Map, Plot Plan approval is required to construct an approximately 1,330,000-square-foot industrial building on 59.55 acres, a 550,000-square-foot industrial building on 27.58 acres, and a 10.00-acre park with two small adjacent parking lots for recreational users.

Contact Information

Name
Dan Fairbanks
Agency Name
March Joint Powers Authority
Job Title
Planning Director
Contact Types
Lead/Public Agency

Location

Cities
Riverside
Counties
Riverside
Regions
Southern California
Cross Streets
Cactus Avenue and Barton Street
Zip
92518
Total Acres
808
Jobs
2000
Parcel #
276120-001, 276170-007, 294020-001, 297080-003/-004, 297090-001/-002/-003/-004/-007/ -008/-009,
State Highways
I 215 Freeway

Notice of Completion

State Review Period Start
State Review Period End
Development Types
Industrial (Industrial-143.4 ac, Business Park-66.4 ac, Mixed-Use-43.1 ac)(Sq. Ft. 1880000, Acres 252.8, Employees 2000)
Local Actions
General Plan Amendment, Specific Plan, Site Plan, Land Division (Subdivision, etc.)
Project Issues
Aesthetics, Air Quality, Biological Resources, Cultural Resources, Energy, Geology/Soils, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Growth Inducement, Hazards & Hazardous Materials, Hydrology/Water Quality, Land Use/Planning, Mandatory Findings of Significance, Noise, Population/Housing, Public Services, Recreation, Solid Waste, Transportation, Tribal Cultural Resources, Utilities/Service Systems, Wetland/Riparian, Wildfire
Reviewing Agencies
California Air Resources Board (ARB), California Department of Conservation (DOC), California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Inland Deserts Region 6 (CDFW), California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), California Department of Parks and Recreation, California Department of Transportation, District 8 (DOT), California Department of Transportation, Division of Aeronautics (DOT), California Department of Transportation, Division of Transportation Planning (DOT), California Department of Water Resources (DWR), California Governor's Office of Emergency Services (OES), California Highway Patrol (CHP), California Natural Resources Agency, California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), California Regional Water Quality Control Board, Santa Ana Region 8 (RWQCB), Department of Toxic Substances Control, Office of Historic Preservation, California Native American Heritage Commission (NAHC)
Reviewing Agency Comments
California Native American Heritage Commission (NAHC)

Attachments

Notice of Completion [NOC] Transmittal form
State Comment Letters [Comments from state reviewing agencies]

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