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Council wants look at 2nd Street roundabout
The City of Ripon will look at traffic and safety issues at the Second Street roundabout following Calvary Reformed Church’s extension on its development agreement. - photo by VINCE REMBULAT / The Bulletin

Calvary Reformed Church recently received an extension on its development agreement.

The Ripon City Council approved the initial 15-year plan for another 15 years. 

“Over 30 years building requirements can change,” said Mayor Leo Zuber at last month’s meeting.

The church at 741 Second St. carried out Phase 1 of the plan – the administrative building, the roundabout (as requested by the City of Ripon), and the off-street parking – dating back to 2004, according to Ben Sweet, who is the president of the Calvary Church Foundation.

“The three things the church hoped to accomplish, they did,” he said.

But Phase 2 and 3 were delayed due to staff turnover, the recession, and trying to acquire two parcels for the church project.

“Church development is different from residential development,” Sweet added. “Things don’t move as fast and delays occur.

“That is why the church is asking for an extension.”

The neighbors expressed concern about noise, traffic, parking and safety issues.

“There are no white lines to indicate where the crosswalk is so drivers know where to stop when people are walking through it,” said Florence Moret, who also pointed out that problems at the roundabout could worsen with increased traffic.

Don Halseth has lived on Second Street for 35 years. The retired Manteca Unified School District Deputy Superintendent is concerned about construction and debris flying everywhere.

Other from that, he said that there’s nothing better than a church as your neighbor.

“I don’t think traffic will be an issue as long as the church is in communication with the neighbors,” Halseth said.

Rob Donoho, who is the vice president of church’s Leadership Team, said those from Calvary Reformed Church will look to work with the neighbors again on the next phases.

“The church desires to benefit the community and is willing to work with the neighbors to make sure there are no issues,” he noted.

In September of 2004, Calvary Reformed Church entered into a 15-year Development Agreement with the City for a Master Campus Plan for their church facility located on Second Street.

The plan back then included three distinct phases for the expansion of their campus – construction of the two-story administrative building coupled with the round-a-bout at Second Street and Palm Avenue and additional parking at the northwest corner of Second Street and Palm Avenue.

Councilman Jake Parks asked Public Works Director Ted Johnston to look at the round-a-bout on Second Street for visibility issues.

Councilman Daniel de Graaf chimed in, agreeing that visibility is poor.

The Phase 2 plan, meanwhile, includes the demolition of two existing homes located on the west side of Palm Avenue owned by Calvary Reformed Church, the demolition of the old parsonage on the south side of Second Street, construction of a new two-story youth building adjacent to Palm Avenue, and the installation of additional parking and landscaping on-site.

Phase 3 will consist of the construction of additional office space and church classroom space on the north side of Second Street, which would be attached to the two-story administrative office building constructed in Phase 1.