One of the two vacant parcels across the street from Lathrop City Hall could soon be home to 84 new apartments if the Lathrop Planning Commission signs off on a site plan review that will help bring fresh multi-family housing unit to a community largely absent of them.
Tonight, Los Gatos-based Ramona Chace is seeking the approval of a resolution that will allow them to proceed with plans to construct the second phase of the Towne Centre Apartments – an 84-unit apartment complex on the 3.4-acre site located at the northwest corner of Golden Valley Parkway and Towne Centre Drive.
Last year the City approved a request by Ramona Chace to proceed with construction of the first phase of the project which is being constructed directly across the street on the southwest corner of Golden Valley Parkway and Towne Centre Drive, and plans exist for the two projects to be integrated – with residents in the second phase of construction having access to the recreation room and clubhouse, swimming pool and spa and outdoor amenities that were included in the plans approved last year.
The 84-unit project will include five residential buildings of both two-story and three-story elevations that will house apartments ranging in size from 850 square foot 1-bedroom apartments to 1,100 square foot 2-bedroom apartments – units that will include a laundry area with room for a washer and dryer, a pantry, walk-in closets, private patios and balcony areas and storage rooms.
The second phase of the Towne Centre Apartments will also include 178 parking spaces – with 165 on-site and 13 located on Towne Centre Drive – and related site work that includes landscaping, lighting and frontage improvements.
According to the staff report prepared for the item, the city currently has very little options for residents looking to live in rental apartments – with most of what are available tending to be older units that offer very few amenities.
The same developer is also pursuing the development of a 126,000 square foot retail project adjacent to the existing Target shopping center on Golden Valley Parkway, as well as a 60,000 square foot hotel – the first that would be constructed on the west side of the I-5 corridor.
But things haven’t always ran smoothly between the city and Ramona Chace when it came to pursuing development of apartment units in the city. Back in 2014, Ramona Chace owner Ron Tate accused the city council of holding up his allocation of sewer permits for what was then a 208-unit apartment complex – offering to pull out his checkbook and write a $7.5 million check on the spot if he could get the necessary allocations to allow construction to proceed. He accused the city of playing favorites with other developers who were receiving sewer allocations, including River Islands – a firm that paid for the wastewater treatment facility that Lathrop operates under the guise that they would have first rights to allocations when they became available.
And it appears that the matter may have been litigated.
Listed in the minutes and reports of past meetings of the Lathrop City Council on the city’s website, a lawsuit filed by Ramona Chace against the city of Lathrop was included at least three times – once in 2014, once in 2015 and once in 2016. According to the minutes, eight different cases were recorded with the San Joaquin County Superior Court between the two parties, but no further information has been disclosed.
The Lathrop Planning Commission typically meets on the third Wednesday of the month at Lathrop City Hall – located at 390 Towne Centre Drive – at 6 p.m. For additional information, or to obtain a copy of the agenda or materials for tonight’s meeting, visit the City of Lathrop’s website at www.ci.lathrop.ca.us.
To contact reporter Jason Campbell email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 209.249.3544.