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General plan update effort seeks requests for zoning changes

Last month the Lathrop City Council approved a resolution that allowed for a zoning change for certain parcels within the Central Lathrop Specific Plan.

And now the consultant that is handling Lathrop’s General Plan Update process – the Sacramento-area headquartered De Novo Planning Group, which is handling the City of Manteca’s update – is putting out a call for property owners seeking a land use change ahead of the drafts of the document that will shape Lathrop’s growth for at least another decade.

While the request won’t allow for property owners residing within a particular zoning designation to simply ask that it be changed – the call for submissions is for land use designations, which cover more of a long-term future plan regarding property for cohesive growth – it will allow parcel owners to submit something that the general plan steering committee will review and consider for the first update to the city’s “blueprint for growth.”

And things have changed quite a bit since the City of Lathrop set its last general plan in place – back when the city was incorporated in 1989.

The city had around 7,000 people living in it when it officially became a city, and that number grew to only 11,000 residents by 2000.

In less than two decades since the turn of the millennium, the city’s population has more than doubled, and there is more than enough already approved residential development waiting to be constructed right now that would more than double the size of the city again if it were all built out.

The consultant hired to handle Lathrop’s general plan update has already held three “visioning” workshops – each in a different part of the city to allow neighborhood residents to come and participate in the process – that have allowed the public to play a role in crafting the priorities that the city should address with the document, and the input has allowed planners as well as the general plan steering committee to get a feel for what residents would like to see happen as the city continues to grow into the future.

While it only covers seven specific topics – land use, housing, circulation, conservation, open space, noise and safety – guidelines from the State of California on more current topics such as climate change and the 200-year flood protection effort exist to bolster the document to cover all aspects of future growth and development and help create a document that steers mitigation efforts when required. 

The cost of the General Plan Update itself is $794,315 with a 15 percent contingency of $119,147 not to be used with the written permission of the City Manager. That budget is expected to cover the entire process, and almost half that amount has already been budgeted with the remainder being appropriated at the end of the current fiscal year.  

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.