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2035 General Plan approved

Council passes plan after 6-year planning process
By: Rachel Zirin, Senior Reporter
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The Folsom City Council unanimously approved the 2035 General Plan, including the Environmental Impact Report, during Tuesday’s, Aug. 28, meeting, which has been in the works for more than six years.

The purpose of the General Plan is to protect and enhance Folsom’s assets, guide Folsom’s growth in the area south of Highway 50, strengthen existing neighborhoods, and provide cohesive vision for the Folsom of 2035.

The previous General Plan was adopted in 1988, and since, Folsom has gained more than 77,000 residents and has nearly filled its city limits north of Highway 50.

The 2035 General Plan will establish the framework for land use decisions in the City of Folsom throughout the next 20 years and includes goals, policies and programs on a wide range of topics.

The General Plan establishes major trends and nine elements/topics including: land use, mobility, economic prosperity, housing, natural and cultural resources, public facilities and services, parks and recreation, and safety and noise, as well as implementation.

The draft of the plan was prepared by city staff and a hired consulting team that specializes in preparing general plans. The draft has been presented to the public, as well as a series of commission workshops and public hearings which began in 2017.

During Tuesday’s meeting, Folsom Community Development Director Pam Johns gave an overview of the planning stages of the project, followed by Folsom Engineering Operations Manager Mark Rackovan, who presented what Level of Service means by each letter – A through F. Level A means traffic is flowing with no delays, and going down the letters to Level F which means traffic congestion is at capacity. Rackovan also presented changes in the vehicular Level of Service verbiage in the General Plan from accepting Level D during peak commute hours to accepting Level D (or better) during peak commute hours.

Before Mayor Steve Miklos opened the public hearing, the council made a few comments on the item.

Vice Mayor Ernie Sheldon thanked his colleagues for giving him more time to read the General Plan. He followed by mentioning that the plan should be more specific in stating the City of Folsom will consider a plan for a River District, instead of stating the City of Folsom will plan a River District. Johns assured Sheldon the change had been made.

Council Member Roger Gaylord said he would not accept a Level E or Level F, and he wouldn’t vote for Level E or Level F. He said with the modification to the Level of Service policy, Policy M4.1.3, he can support it.

The council had 13 requests to speak, most thanking the council for the changes that have been made, and a few requesting the council to postpone the approval.

After the public hearing was closed, the council thanked their colleagues, staff and all who worked on the General Plan, including the residents who showed up to participate in the public workshops.

Miklos reminded everyone that the General Plan is a fluid document and is not permanent. Items can be amended in the future, and they will be.

Council Member Kerri Howell moved the item for approval, Miklos second, and the 2035 General Plan passed unanimously.

The Folsom Telegraph staff is working on a series that describes what is in the 2035 General Plan and will be broken down by each of the 10 chapters. Look for this series in future editions in the months to come.

For more information on the 2035 General Plan, go to folsom2035.com.