Thursday, July 12, 2007

Elkhorn, Gateway to Yolo County


Supervisor Rexroad made available the Yolo County General Plan report for the Preferred Land Use Alternative. Within those documents is an interesting plan to develop about 100 acres at Elkhorn, about 3 miles east of Woodland. Any plan to develop agricultural land should be scrutinized, but I agree with the staff recommendation of allowing commercial-only use at this site (meaning industrial use should not be allowed).

Although in the 100-year flood plain, the proposed area is protected by levees along the Sacramento River and Yolo Bypass. In comparison, it constitutes only 4% of the new lands within the Woodland ULL. The soils are mostly non-prime, but most importantly the parcel adjoins the river and it has railroad access (connecting Woodland to West Sacramento).

These last two points would allow a creative use of the area to include, but not be limited to:

1. Sacramento River Museum and Aquarium
2. Marina with restaurants and recreational facilities
3. Vietnam Veterans Memorial Bridge monument
4. Hotel with conference facilites
5. Ferry service or small bridge connection to Sacramento County
6. Park and water taxi stop connecting Knights Landing and Old Sacramento

The idea for a river aquarium would be to anchor the area with a unique tourist attraction (meaning tax revenue for Yolo). The complex could include a river museum and maybe an educational fish hatchery. School trips by train would be perfect for science and history lessons. I also envision partnerships with Sacramento County and CalTrans, especially with the opportunity to enhance the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Bridge with spires or obelisks at each end. This could really be a grand entry to Yolo County... much better than the Walgreens distribution building that welcomes travelers to Woodland.

Do you think Elkhorn should be developed? If so, how would you develop it? If not, why?

4 comments:

Matt Rexroad said...

Dino --

What does this have to do with the ULL?

Matt

Dino said...

Matt: The reference to the ULL is for those who are sensitive to building on agricultural land. The comparison is useful for weighing the benefits of developing about 100 acres of farmland at Elkhorn versus developing about 2,340 acres of farmland in Woodland. For the examples I listed, I think the sacrifice of land at Elkhorn will be worth it - - provided it's not taken by eminent domain.

Anonymous said...

Dino,

I'm with you on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the other shops and Museum would be a nice touch.

YoloCalVet

Anonymous said...

The County needs money this location would provide needed resources and provide nice entrance to Yolo County. Go for it