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September 6, 2011 > Letter to the editor: My Thoughts: Fremont Hill Area Development

Letter to the editor: My Thoughts: Fremont Hill Area Development

On August 25th, the Planning Commission passed the proposal for a Conditional Use Permit and Preliminary Grading Plan to allow construction of a 9,976 square foot single-family dwelling on a vacant 80-acre parcel. This single home requires access over constrained lands, a 35% slope, using a road for firefighters.

As one of the Proponents of the Hill Area Initiative in 2002, my concern is the present spider web of fire roads in Fremont on the hill face for fire access. Can these unimproved and unapproved fire roads now be paved and approved as private roads to facilitate construction of homes for the greedy on hilltops, littering our views? Can the owner of this 80-acre parcel increase the size of his 9,976 square foot home beyond 10,000 square feet? Can he subdivide his 80-acre parcel into new parcels and sell them?

A deed restriction was requested to prohibit further additions to this building site and any subdivision; there are no other building sites available on the entire 80-acre parcel. Both requests were denied because it was deemed unnecessary by the City Attorney. Is there a possibility that adjourning properties can also utilize these private access roads to build homes? Time will tell.

In this situation, the Planning Commission voted sensibly. This project has come before the Planning Commission three times and all three times Commissioners have approved this project. However; this is the first time the proposal has been reasonable. The responsibility of the Planning Commission, City Council and primarily City Staff is to uphold and respect the residents of Fremont who approved Measure T, the Hill Area Initiative, in 2002. However; the ultimate responsibility will always be with the residents to remind decision makers of their duty.

Democracy is not a spectator sport.

Susan R. Gearhart
Fremont

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