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Public comment being sought for Soledad Corridor

Posted: November 2, 2013 2:29 p.m.
Updated: November 2, 2013 2:29 p.m.

This photo, looking west on Soledad Canyon Road from Crossglade Avenue in Canyon Country, shows part of the area being considered for potential new development standards.

New development standards could be coming to one of Santa Clarita Valley’s busiest thoroughfares, depending on what members of the public say they want to see, according to city officials.

Santa Clarita is in the beginning stages of a process to draft a planning document that will guide future use and development in downtown Canyon Country — the “Soledad Corridor” — depending on what the residents, business and property owners of the area want.

The zone being considered for a city area-specific plan encompasses more than 180 acres and about 1.45 million square feet of commercial space along Soledad Canyon Road from Camp Plenty Road to Solamint Road, extending a few blocks north and south along the way.

“We’re looking to get an interactive community plan by soliciting information and feedback from the community,” said Jeff Hogan, Santa Clarita’s planning manager.

One such information-gathering session was held in October, when city officials met with local residents at the Canyon Country Library to discuss what they like about the corridor’s existing amenities and look at what they would like to see in the future.

“The change could be something as little as providing more landscaping if that’s what people want,” Hogan said at the October session.

Meetings like the one at the Canyon Country Library in October represent the very early stages of the process.

Those who attended the session were able to use stickers to mark what they like about the area as it exists today and what they would like to see in the future.

“Over the years we’ve heard consistent feedback from the community saying, ‘Why don’t you pay more attention to the east side? (of the city)’” said Mike Marshall, an assistant planner with the city.

Marshall said the public feedback process would be comprehensive, allowing residents to weigh in on everything from the existing architecture and landscaping in the area to what kind of amenities or retail outlets they would like to see moving forward.

“The general tone seems to be that people do want to see some sort of change,” Marshall said.

During the October session, Canyon Country resident Matt Purciel said he would like to see the architecture of the area updated.

“This is a great location with a lot of traffic going through, so it would be nice to have it look a little more unified,” he said.

The city plans to hold several similar public meetings to gauge opinions of as many people as possible.

“At the very minimum, at least, it’s bringing people out to talk about Soledad, talk about the corridor,” Hogan said of the meetings.

Alan Ferdman, a longtime Canyon Country resident and chairman of the Canyon Country Advisory Committee, said he appreciates the city taking a comprehensive look at the area.

“I’m very encouraged by this activity because it does show the city’s interest in the east side and Canyon Country,” Ferdman said.
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