Paso Robles residents were able to voice their concerns Wednesday evening and learn more about the development expected to bring nearly 1,000 new homes to the southeast part of town.
People had a chance to walk around and visit different booths during an open house hosted by the city. In each area, topics such as traffic circulation, water supply and schools were discussed.
The open field spanning 210 acres along Creston Road could soon be a community of 915 homes.
"It’s a great place to live but why impact it and make it worse? Why make it a worse place to live?" asked Brad Sebring of Paso Robles.
Sebring worries the development will hurt traffic, especially during commute hours when many are trying to catch the highway.
"You figure at least two and quarter cars per household; you are looking at well over 2,000 cars that are going to impact Creston Road, which is the only outlet for this project," Sebring added.
Paso Robles resident Trine Marlen reviewed all posted bulletins but said she is still concerned there’s not enough water to serve the new neighbors.
"So if we have been in a drought for multiple years, we didn’t get rain this year, our aquifer isn’t getting replenished, we don’t have sufficient storage, we are already on water restrictions all summer long, so how can we accommodate these new homes?" asked Marlen.
Dan Lloyd represents the developer. He said the development is not expected to cause serious traffic congestion and the city will do a traffic study to learn which roads will need to be expanded in the future. He also said traffic is going to be dispersed around the community.
As for water, Lloyd said the city has secured enough water for expansion.
"The city has anticipated its growth cap of 44,000 people and the water that they have secured will accommodate all of the planned growth," explained Lloyd, the Beechwood Specific Plan representative.
Another concern: Where will the children who move in go to school?
Paso Robles Joint Unified School District Superintendent Chris Williams said there is plenty of space but the board is working to potentially build a new school within the next ten years.
If the environmental impact report and the Beechwood development are approved this year, construction could begin in 2020.
Large new housing development planned in Paso Robles