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Chico Housing Codes for Review – Chico Enterprise-Record


The Chico Nut Company location remains a prominent feature along The Espanade, as seen on Tuesday, May 14, 2024 in Chico, California. (Evan Tuchinsky/Enterprise Record)

CHICO – The Chico Planning Commission is meeting for the first time in more than three months and will discuss a potpourri of issues Thursday evening, from individual parcels to overarching policies.

The agenda includes a proposal to subdivide a 50-acre parcel at California Park, possible redevelopment of the Chico Nut Company site at The Esplanade and changes to the “residential readiness” portions of land use codes and the General Plan for consistency with the city’s housing. element update. The committee last met on February 1; the minutes of that meeting constitute the consent agenda.

On the northwest corner of Highway 32 and Bruce Road, a property that currently cannot be developed would still be split into four parts if the subdivision is approved.

The largest parcel, 11.8 acres along 32 with some access to Bruce, would contain both medium-density and high-density housing. The 2.2 hectares at the intersection would be Community Commercial, as would 0.6 hectares north of it. The remaining 5.5 acres would be primary open space and secondary open space intended as an easement for that portion of Dead Horse Slough.

The second and third items – Chico Nut and the general plan – are linked (and appear together in a staff report detailing the two).

When the city approved the 2022-2030 housing element in September, the process led to a revision of several planning documents, specifically Title 19 of the Municipal Code and the 2011-2030 General Plan.

According to the staff report, the Community Development Department recommends “a number of changes to Title 19” to implement housing actions, “create consistency of policy direction” with the General Plan, “resolve minor inconsistencies” in city codes, “ Interpretations to Formalize” by Community Development Director Brendan Vieg and “Responding to New State Legislation,” plus “Clarifying Terms and Definitions.”

In addition, the changes include council decisions to streamline permitting for projects that require an architectural review, relax parking requirements for downtown residential projects, adjust restrictions on the sale and serving of alcohol, and change language in commercial clarify cannabis regulations.