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File #: 08-0628    Version: 1
Type: Agenda Item Status: Approved
File created: 4/21/2008 In control: Board of Supervisors
On agenda: 4/29/2008 Final action: 4/29/2008
Title: Transportation Department requesting the Board take the following actions regarding the Diamond Springs Parkway Project 72334: 1) Direct said Department to study the “T” alignment (Alternative 4) as the preferred alignment alternative per California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and Exhibit 2; 2) Direct said Department to negotiate a Reimbursement Agreement with Granite Grado Ventures for the advancement costs associated with the planning, design and construction of Diamond Springs Parkway; and 3) Direct said Department to negotiate a consultant service contract with Cooper-Thorne and Associates (CTA) for civil engineering and Kimley-Horn and Associates for traffic engineering services and Michael Brandman Associates (MBA) for environmental services on subject project.
Attachments: 1. DSP Exhibit 2.pdf, 2. DSP Exhibit 1.pdf
Related files: 21-0178, 22-0241, 20-0828
Title
Transportation Department requesting the Board take the following actions regarding the Diamond Springs Parkway Project 72334:
1) Direct said Department to study the "T" alignment (Alternative 4) as the preferred alignment alternative per California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and Exhibit 2;
2) Direct said Department to negotiate a Reimbursement Agreement with Granite Grado Ventures for the advancement costs associated with the planning, design and construction of Diamond Springs Parkway; and
3) Direct said Department to negotiate a consultant service contract with Cooper-Thorne and Associates (CTA) for civil engineering and Kimley-Horn and Associates for traffic engineering services and Michael Brandman Associates (MBA) for environmental services on subject project.
Body
BUDGET SUMMARY:
 
 
Total Estimated Cost
 
$  0
 
 
 
     Funding
 
 
          Budgeted
$
 
          New Funding
$
 
          Savings
$
 
          Other
$
 
     Total Funding Available
$
 
Change To Net County Cost
 
$  0
      
Fiscal Impact:  
 
This action provides direction to the Department only.  There are no financial impacts directly created by this action.  The Diamond Springs Parkway Project and reimbursement agreement will be submitted for Board approval in the future.
 
Change to Net County Cost:
 
The net County cost is $0.
 
Reasons for Recommendations:  
 
Diamond Springs Parkway, previously known as the Missouri Flat / Pleasant Valley Connector, is included as a new road in the 2004 General Plan.  This new roadway has been contemplated for over 10 years to provide additional circulation, reduce the congestion and improve traffic safety on SR-49/Main Street through historic Diamond Springs.  The existing SR-49/Main Street is two lanes and cannot provide the capacity for the heavy commute traffic between southeast El Dorado County and US-50 to an acceptable level of service.  The historic significance of the area precludes widening of the existing street.
 
The Board previously selected a preferred alternative for the new roadway alignment in consideration of transportation needs and public input.  This preferred alignment, designated as Alternative #3 (see Exhibit 1), is a sweeping alignment beginning at Missouri Flat Road north of China Garden proceeding in an easterly direction to Throwita Way, curving southeasterly to a parallel alignment to SR-49/Diamond Road to connect at the intersection of SR-49/Fowler.  Alternative #4 is similar in alignment (see Exhibit 1), except that it incorporates a "T" intersection with SR-49/Diamond Road instead of the sweeping curve.  Alternative #4 offers potential cost savings, reduced right of way impacts, streamlined processing with Caltrans and greater potential for economic development. The Department therefore recommends that the Board amend its previous direction by directing the Department to proceed with studies of Alternate #4 as the preferred alignment alternative.
 
Background:
 
In 1997, the Department presented six alignments for the "Diamond Springs Parkway" to the Board.  The Board considered the future transportation needs, impacts to existing residential areas and public input. The Board selected Alternative #3 (as the preferred alternative) with the condition that if the State objected, the Department would return to the Board to consider amending this direction. Alternative #3 provided a continuous roadway for the heavy commuter traffic from southeast El Dorado County to US-50 and required SR- 49 through-traffic to turn at a new intersection.
 
Per the Board's recommendation, the County pursued the selected alternative.  Due to the realignment and improvements to SR-49, the County began formal coordination with Caltrans and initiated a Cooperative Agreement and Project Study Report.   Caltrans requested that the studies include an alternative that did not segment SR-49.  Alternative #4 satisfies Caltrans requirements and the traffic circulation needs.  
 
Both alternatives, #3 and #4, similarly reduce congestion on SR-49/Main Street and avoid impacts to the existing residential areas.   Per the traffic study, both alternatives provide an acceptable level of service for the new intersection of Diamond Springs Parkway and SR-49 (LOS B) under forecasted 2025 conditions.
 
New studies indicate that Alternative #4 may not require significant realignment of SR-49 but would only require "minor" improvements of SR-49.  In recent discussions with Caltrans, they have indicated a conceptual approval that these revised improvements to SR-49 would require an encroachment permit through Caltrans' new Permit Engineering Evaluation Report (PEER) process, instead of the previous formal process requiring a Cooperative Agreement, Project Study Report, Project Report and Route Adoption.   These changes have the opportunity to provide significant savings to the County in project costs and delivery time.
 
Currently, the total estimated project costs for Alternative #3, as programmed in the 2008 Adopted five-year Capital Improvement Program (CIP), is approximately $39 million.  The total estimated costs for the current version of Alternative #4, considering the above assumptions regarding SR-49 work, is approximately $28 million.
 
In addition to the potential cost savings, another significant difference in the two alternatives is the impact to developable land.  Alternative #3, with the sweeping alignment, bisects several properties.  Alternative #4 approximately follows property lines with the straighter "T" alignment providing less fragmentation of properties.  The Diamond Springs Parkway lies within the Missouri Flat Master Circulation and Financing Plan (MC&FP) which recognizes and supports the economic development of the area. Reducing right of way needs and splitting of parcels maximizes potential land use and economic development of the area consistent with the intent of the Missouri Flat MC&FP.
 
Therefore, to capitalize on the potential cost savings, reduced right of way impacts, streamlined processing with Caltrans and greater potential economic development, the Department recommends proceeding with Alternate #4 as the preferred alignment.
 
Current Status:
 
The County has received an application for the commercial development, Diamond Dorado Retail Center.  The developer, Granite Grado Ventures, has been assisting the County to advance the Diamond Springs Parkway Project and will be required to dedicate a significant portion of the right of way necessary for Alternative #4 (see Exhibit 2).  Preliminary estimates of the proposed dedication of right of way are approximately 4.3 acres of right of way and 1.1 acres of slope easements.  The developers' contributions of right of way for the Diamond Springs Parkway and frontage along SR-49 are currently estimated to save the County approximately $5 million in right of way acquisition lowering the expected project costs to approximately $23 million.
 
Also, the developer's advancement of approximately $5.5M in TIM fees for Diamond Dorado Retail Center Project, and the inclusion of the developer's project into the Missouri Flat MC&FP will provide additional revenue to help fund the construction.
 
In consideration of their mandatory contributions to the project costs, the Department recommends the County enter into negotiations and a reimbursement agreement with Granite Grado Ventures for reimbursement of the advancement costs of the planning, design and construction of Diamond Springs Parkway.
 
Summary:
 
The selection of Alternative #4 per Exhibit 2 will save the County an estimated $11 million as compared to the programmed costs for Alternative #3.  Additional savings estimated to be about $5 million can be realized through right of way dedications from the Grado Ventures the project.   Total estimated savings for approving the current proposed direction of working with Grado Ventures and pursuing Alternative #4 is $16 million as compared to the programmed project.
 
In addition, this cooperative effort by County, State and private business, can make this much needed traffic circulation element's construction not only more possible than ever before, but also a potential cost savings to the County's TIM Fee Program and the County's ability to enhance its economic development opportunities.
 
 
 
Actions to be Taken Following Approval:  
 
1.      The Department will pursue the study of the "T" alignment (Alignment #4) as the preferred alignment alternative per CEQA and Exhibit 2;
2.      The Department will negotiate a Reimbursement Agreement with Granite Grado Ventures and return to the Board for approval.
3.      The Department will negotiate contracts with Cooper-Thorne and Associates (CTA) and Kimley-Horn and Associates and Michael Brandman Associates (MBA) for environmental services and return to the Board for approval of such contracts.
 
District/Supervisor:      District III, Supervisor Jack Sweeney
 
Contacts:
David Storer, Assistant CAO
Richard Shepard, Director of Transportation
      
Attachments:
Exhibit 1 - layouts of alignment alternatives #3 and #4
Exhibit 2 - layout of proposed right of way dedication from Grado Ventures
 
Concurrences: