The Danville Town Council has given its support to a new residential development planned for the southwest part of town.
The proposal by Pleasanton-based Ponderosa Homes would bring 20 new residential lots to a small portion of a nearly 110-acre parcel at the end of Midland Way, off San Ramon Valley Boulevard.
As part of its endorsement of the project, the council voted unanimously last Tuesday to certify the final environmental impact report, approve the major subdivision request and allow the developer to remove 14 town-protected trees during construction.
"The applicant, Ponderosa Homes, was effective meeting with neighbors and identifying neighborhood concerns. This is what we expect -- and appreciate -- property owners and builders to do when introducing homes in an existing neighborhood," Danville Mayor Robert Storer said.
The project proposal calls for 20 single-family homes, each ranging roughly between 3,150 and 3,700 square feet, on a low-lying 10-acre portion of the parcel. At least two of the new residential lots would include a smaller, second dwelling unit.
The remaining approximately 99 acres would be designated as permanent open space, under the proposal supported by the council.
About 96% of the open space would be offered to the East Bay Regional Park District to become part of the adjacent Las Trampas Regional Wilderness Area, according to town staff. A public trail would be added to provide access to the wilderness area from the residential community.
The EIR and mitigation measures approved by council members addressed potential project impacts in a range of areas, including air quality, aesthetics, cultural resources, geology and soils, and biological resources.
The lone citizen speaker at the council meeting Tuesday raised questions about hydrological impacts of the project, according to town officials.
"I believe when people are satisfied with the process and believe their concerns have been heard and mitigated, they have a tendency to support the project by not attending town council meetings," Storer said.
Ponderosa received permission to remove 14 town-protected trees during construction. The company anticipates needing to level other 10 trees that do not have special protections.
Hundreds of other trees at the site will be preserved, including a 54-inch Valley oak near the entrance to the property, Storer said.
The developers must plant new trees of appropriate size and number to equal the total diameter of all removed town-protected trees. All other trees need to be replaced at a 1-to-1 ratio.
Council members also indicated support for Ponderosa's request to rezone the project site from general agricultural to the planned unit development district. The parcel has a land-use designation of rural residential.
The council held the first reading of an ordinance approving the rezone. The final reading of the proposed ordinance is set for April 15.