Council to Move Ahead With Greenbriar Project
Two weeks ago, the federal government basically told the city of Sacramento: If you want to build in Natomas, you’re gonna have to stick your buildings on 20-foot stilts. On Tuesday, the city council plans to approve a major new development anyway.
Monday, January 28, 2008
This new Greenbriar neighborhood would be nestled in between Highway 99 and Interstate 5, not far from the Sacramento Airport. The developers would build at least 3,000 housing units and some 300,000 square feet of retail space. But the project’s crown jewel, says project manager Phil Serna, is a light rail station along the future Downtown-Natomas-Airport line.
Serna: “And we have appropriate densities near the station that will help serve to make it one of the most high-capacity stations in the future in terms of ridership.”
Serna says Greenbriar takes to heart the principles of the regional smart-growth strategy known as the Blueprint. And he says his project’s owners have pledged not to start building until the Natomas levees have been restored to their 100-year flood protection. That’s estimated to be in 2010.
But critics say Greenbriar is a misplaced priority. Barry Wasserman is on the board of the Environmental Council of Sacramento – an organization that’s suing to try to stop Greenbriar.
Wasserman: “What’s the most important thing to do, given the resources that you have? In other words, where are you gonna get the most bang for your buck? Our need is to make our city more active, really focus on getting the downtown to function – both for the city of Sacramento and the region as a whole.”
Specifically, Wasserman says, the Greenbriar development could threaten projects he believes are more important, like the Railyards and the Docks.
The city council will vote tonight on whether to approve several legal documents that lay the project’s groundwork.