Creating an environment for success
Several County departments are focused on revitalizing the South Sacramento area adjacent to Franklin Boulevard known as the Avenues. Long-term projects include transportation infrastructure and streetscape upgrades; working with property owners to improve safety and property values; and creating a rapid response team to provide permit streamlining. Hackman Capital Partners, LLC recently purchased the 129-acre former Campbell’s Soup plant and renamed it the Capital Commerce Center. The County’s commitment to the community will complement their plans for growth and jobs on the site.
“We are investing a great deal of resources in this area to improve the quality of life and to create an environment for success,” said County Executive Bradley J. Hudson. “Improvements will not only increase property values and create a safer neighborhood for residents and future workers, they will help ensure that the Capital Commerce Center has the kind of support it needs to become an economic success story for the region.”
About five years ago, Phase 1 of the Franklin Boulevard Landscape and Streetscape Project was completed. Along Franklin Boulevard, from Turnbridge Drive to 47th Avenue, the project included reconstructed medians and sidewalks, as well as the addition of new traffic signals and bicycle lanes.
By spring of this year, Phase 2 will begin with nearly $2.1 million in streetscape enhancements along Franklin Boulevard. The project is funded by the Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG), Community Design Program and the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency. Improvements will include new sidewalks, pedestrian crossings, bicycle lanes, and an enhanced bus stop.
“The Department of Transportation and Office of Economic Development and Marketing are working closely with Hackman staff to ensure that medians and entrances into the site optimally support the Center’s success,” said Troy Givans, Economic Development and Marketing Director.
To help improve the local quality of life, a multiagency coalition known as the Neighborhood Livability Initiative (NLI) is focused on public and private property improvement in the area. From the removal of broken-down cars and providing resources to landlords, to the replacement of sidewalks and trimming overgrown trees, Code Enforcement, Water Resources, Transportation, Probation, Waste Management and Recycling and the Sheriff’s Department are working together to tackle a full spectrum of issues.
“The NLI process includes doing a comprehensive County sweep of an area which may include educating property owners of potential violations, while other projects, such as tree trimming or sidewalk repair, are already going on,” said Carl Simpson, Chief of Code Enforcement. “When we have work crews scheduled in a neighborhood, Code Enforcement is there at the same time to work directly with property owners. This allows us to have a greater presence in an area to make dramatic improvements in a short amount of time.”
Simpson added that about 90 percent of the properties in this area are rentals, many with out-of-town landlords, which makes property maintenance more challenging. Code Enforcement gives property owners deadlines to make repairs and adhere to building and property standards. To develop positive working relationships, Code Enforcement meets with landlords, local businesses, schools and non-profits to explain expectations and ordinances and provide assistance when needed.
“We are not just here to force people to clean up their properties or to levy fines on people who may already be struggling,” Jose Mendez, NLI Supervisor said. “We want to engage residents, and let them know we are here to help them and are invested in their neighborhood.”
With the infrastructure enhancements and focusing on property and the neighborhood, Sacramento County is continuing its commitment to the area. “We understand that facilitating success for the Capital Commerce Center it will help create local jobs, infuse the local economy and improve services with the increase in property taxes. This will only have a positive effect on the entire region’s economic recovery,” Givans added.