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June 5, 2018 > Letter to the Editor: Niles Gateway Project ? a legal struggle

Letter to the Editor: Niles Gateway Project ? a legal struggle

The City of Fremont has completed a Draft Environmental Impact Report for a revised project at the former Henkle site... that unkempt property at the entrance to Niles.

As you may recall, in 2015 Valley Oaks presented a Plan to the community. While many Nilesians objected, and the Historical Art Review Board (HARB) objected, both the Planning Commission and City Council approved this plan for 97 units, mostly 3-story townhomes. After the approvals, nine Niles residents got together and hired the Brandt-Hawley Preservation Law Group to stop this plan, contesting that a full environmental impact study should have been completed. In January 2017, the case was heard by the Alameda County Superior Court who agreed with the Niles residents, known as "Protect Niles".

Now we have learned that within months of the Court decision (March 2017), Valley Oaks presented a new project plan to the City. It included many changes that had been discussed during negotiations between Protect Niles and Lennar, the property owner, and was to go through the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) process. In mid-2017, Doug Rich of Valley Oaks filed an appeal with the State of CA Appellate Court challenging the Superior Court?s decision. (Note that both the City of Fremont and Valley Oaks were parties to the court case, but only Valley Oaks appealed.) The hearing is pending, but if Valley Oaks wins, they can go back to their original plan.

At the City website you can read the draft EIR. Residents have until July 9th to review and comment on this EIR. Comments go to DWage@fremont.gov. This is a rather lengthy document. One section includes the letters written when the City asked if the EIR should address more than Aesthetics and Traffic. Should this be the project that goes forward, it will go through the same process as the first - HARB, Planning & City Council.

We urge you to read about this new planned development, and let your comments be heard.

https://fremont.gov/430/Environmental-Review?nid=430
then find the information for Niles Gateway.


deni caster
formerly of 3rd @ J

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