San Bruno continues to move forward with rehabilitating the neighborhood badly damaged by the 2010 PG&E explosion and fire with the approval of plans to rebuild 10 lots and construct a new park.
The city voted to negotiate a development agreement with Castle Companies to construct new homes on the 10 vacant lots owned by the city and Pacific Gas and Electric in the Crestmoor neighborhood. Additionally, the city approved purchase of 1690 Claremont Drive for use as a future park for $500,000 from the estates of Gregory and Lavonne Bullis. The two estates agreed to pay closing costs up to $5,000. The purchase price and any closing costs in excess of $5,000 will be reimbursed to the city by the trust established by PG&E to cover costs associated with the explosion. The city is exempt from paying property taxes once it acquires the title, according to a staff report.
Mayor Jim Ruane said the city wants to reconstruct the space with streetscaping and improve the sewer system.
“We’re on track to get it complete,” he said. “We want to get it done the right way.”
Of the lots the city wants to transform into homes, PG&E owns seven and the city owns three. In addition, the city owns two other lots that are envisioned to be used for open spaces. Reforesting the canyon is another step in the process to bringing the area back on track.
Eight people died as a result of a Sept. 9, 2010, PG&E pipeline explosion and fire in the Crestmoor neighborhood. There were also 66 people injured, traumatizing a community and affecting the entire city.
Developing all 10 lots at the same time is a way of wrapping up the project, so neighbors can return to some sense of normalcy, said Councilman Rico Medina.
“It’s in the interest of the community,” Medina said. “It’s been three years of construction and it’s best for the neighborhood to continue the process of rebuilding. We want to see an end in sight and move forward.”
According to a timeline in the staff report, the negotiation and execution of the development agreement between the city and builder of the homes will likely wrap up in January or February of 2014. If it goes through, home construction would last from June 2014 to about March 2015. Design plans could start as soon as February 2014 and the design and review would last from May to June 2014. Sales and occupancy would begin in December 2013 and go until May 2015, the report stated.
Proceeds from the city lots are envisioned to be deposited in the San Bruno Community Foundation account. PG&E has identified the intent that any funds the company receives in excess of the purchase price they paid shall be donated to charity such that the company will not profit from the sale of the lots, according to the report.
For more information on the rebuild effort visit rebuildcrestmoor.org.
(650) 344-5200 ext. 105