April Updates

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April Updates

SFD Landscaping

Spring has sprung -- and thanks to some very welcome April showers -- the weeds have too!  Travelers along Sir Francis Drake have been treated to an especially vigorous display of California grasses as the natives take advantage of yet-to-be landscaped medians. Hopefully, by the time you read this column, the weeds will have been wacked, and some order restored to the center islands, but we’ll still need to wait for landscaping to go in.  As you’ll recall, corridor landscaping was placed on hold due to the drought and mandatory water use restrictions that began in summer 2021. The project team is now looking at fall 2022 at the earliest before the new plantings can go in, as we’ll need the go-ahead from MMWD water restrictions and plan around installation of new median lighting (see below.) For more on the SFD landscaping plan go to: SFD Landscaping

SFD Street Lighting

On April 19, the Board of Supervisors approved a new lighting plan for replacement of the light poles installed along median between Eliseo Drive and Manor Road. The new poles will be shorter, decorative light poles with dimmer fixtures reducing light spill onto adjacent properties, decreasing light intensity and improve aesthetics while still maintaining the lighting uniformity levels necessary for public safety along the roadway.

The project includes replacing light poles and fixtures along approximately one third of the 2.2-mile corridor. The replacement project is expected to begin before the end of 2022, but the timing hinges on when the new decorative poles are available.

The pole replacements are only occurring in median locations where a number of new poles were added. From Manor Road to the Ross town Border, where there were existing street light poles pre-project, poles will remain, but fixture heads will be replaced with dimmer lighting. Back shields and new dimmer fixtures are also being installed on intersection safety lights towards reducing impacts on neighboring properties.

Total project cost is estimated $300,000. The new lighting scheme will reuse existing pole foundations wherever possible. The street light revisions are being funded by the remaining budget of the Upgrade the Drake project and the Marin County Street Light Fund. To further offset the cost, DPW plans to explore resell opportunities for the currently installed street light poles, which are a standard pole design used across California.

Thank you to all those who participated in our zoom community meetings last year and to the community advisory group for your help in vetting design options.  

For more information, read the recent press release and visit the project website.

Homekey: 1251 S. Eliseo

In February, the Board of Supervisors unanimously approved acceptance of  $15,497,200 in state Homekey 2.0 funding to support capital and operating expenses associated with the development of the 1251 S. Eliseo property to provide permanent supportive housing to formerly homeless individuals. Since then, County Health and Human Services and Episcopal Community Services have been moving forward with site acquisition and development and have kicked off the Community Advisory Group (CAG).

County, ECS, and my office specifically, are committed to working in partnership with the City of Larkspur, and all stakeholders on ensuring S. Eliseo is a safe and supportive home for its residents and successfully integrates into the community at large. To that end, utilizing the model employed by the City of Corte Madera with regards to Homekey Casa Buena, a Community Advisory Group (CAG) has been formed which (among other functions) will work together to ensure two-way communication between stakeholders and the community and to develop actionable solutions to issues and concerns raised by community members.

Specifically, the CAG is tasked with bringing to the attention of project developers (County of Marin and ECS) the views, concerns, suggestions, and voices of a broad spectrum of community stakeholders as the project moves forward. These voices will help provide input on program design, public safety, and community relations which will be critical to the success of the project.

Eighteen CAG members have been appointed, and include residents from the S. Eliseo neighborhood, the City of Larkspur, broader Kentfield, as well as representatives from the Kentfield School District, the Marin County Sheriff’s Office, the Central Marin Police Authority, the City of Larkspur, and Marin County Parks.

The members of the CAG have formed three subcommittees, each of which will meet monthly and be attended by CAG members as well as County and ECS representatives.

  • Public Safety Subcommittee is working in close partnership with law enforcement partners and other stakeholders to support the safety and security of the site and immediate surroundings. The Subcommittee will provide feedback on safety measures and inform the project team of any safety-related matters of concern to the community.
  • Program Design Subcommittee is providing feedback to the development team regarding the services and programming offered to residents, learning how the successes and outcomes of those services are defined and measured and how to communicate those to the community.
  • Communications Subcommittee is working with the County and ECS to ensure that the community is well informed about program operations and CAG/working group activities.

Next steps: Site Acquisition and Development

Items related to the South Eliseo Homekey project will be returning to the Board of Supervisors on May 10th to execute the following agreements:

  • A Grant Agreement detailing the County’s contribution to the capital improvements.
  • A County Regulatory Agreement, which will impose conditions and requirements on the deed for 1251 South Eliseo, such as tenant protections, rent limits, and a requirement that the building be used to provide permanent supportive housing for at least 43 low-income individuals.
  • A Draft Preliminary Operating Agreement with Episcopal Community Services which outlines preliminary operational requirements for the site. The County and ECS anticipate amending the Operating Agreement closer to the opening date, to include a Scope of Work that details additional clinical support for clients and the Community Services Safety team.

More information about the Board meeting and instructions on how to attend will be available on Thursday, May 5th through this link.

For questions, email homekey@marincounty.org or visit the website for more information. You can also subscribe for updates.

May 7 Community Heritage & History Day

Join me on May 7th at the Community Heritage & History Day / Bon Air's 70th Birthday Bash hosted by The Kentfield Greenbrae Historical Society (KGHS) and Bon Air! The event will be at the Bon Air Center from 11am-2pm, a free, family-friendly community event and party to celebrate Bon Air’s 70th year and to highlight our shared heritage and history. The event brings together many organizations/schools/leaders in the community to celebrate the important work we do together.

I’ll be on hand to discuss whatever you have on your mind and answer whatever questions you may have, while you also enjoy live music from local schools and community, history presentations; balloon twisting and face-painting; a bocce tournament; a hands-on roses exhibit; vintage cars; Bon Air merchant specials; birthday cupcakes; ice cream and more! Watch Bon Air's new wall mural unfold, showcasing the past, present, and future of Bon Air created in partnership with Marin Open Studios and the Canal Artist Alliance.

See you soon!

 Katie Sig

Contact Info:

Supervisor Katie Rice
District 2 Aides:
Nancy Vernon
Crystal Martinez