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Northwest Airport Way subject of growth plans
CentrePoint Intermodal Center is proposed on 273 acres along Airport Way. - photo by RYAN BALBUENA/The Bulletin
More than 300 acres between Roth Road and Lathrop Road west of Airport Way could accommodate Manteca’s next employment center.

The Manteca Planning Commission Tuesday will take public comment on the draft environmental impact report for the Northwest Airport Way Master Plan. That plan includes 273 acres for the proposed CentrePoint Intermodal Center designed to accommodate major distribution centers with more than four million square feet of warehouse space.

The city is developing a growth plan for all 300 acres even though CentrePoint is the only active project. The rationale is to eliminate piecemeal approach to planning so that roads and infrastructure such as sewer, water and drainage will be adequate for future build out.

The EIR addresses:

•annexing 18 parcels comprising of 392 acres.

•general plan amendments including changing the designation of a 78-acre parcel north of Lathrop Road from light industrial to general commercial.

•prezoning 16 parcels.

•approving a development agreement.

•creating a tentative parcel map for the development of 273 acres into an intermodal center that will be accessed from Roth Road and Airport Way.

•developing a master plan for buildings that have a combined 4 million square feet.

The proponents of the project have already advanced the city $255,330 to pay Michael Brandman & Associates to perform the environmental studies as required by state law. The developer has agreed to also cover the additional costs and has already deposited the funds with the city.

The changes in the scope of the environmental studies were needed after Union Pacific informed city leaders they were no longer doubling the size of their intermodal (train-to-truck) operation on Roth Road in Lathrop that abuts the Manteca city limits. Instead they will quadruple it. The intermodal facility currently handles 250,000 tractor trailers of goods annually moving them from rail to trucks and vice versa. It is located directly west of the proposed CenterPoint project.

If the distribution center materializes, it will be one of a kind in terms of location and size in the Northern San Joaquin Valley.

The site still has to be annexed to the City of Manteca. It is within Manteca’s sphere of influence and is contiguous to the city limits.

The Planning Commission meets at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St.