“University Commons”, Still a Monolithic Mega-dorm Fraught with Problems
U-Mall Project proposal is still out-of-scale and the wrong design
By Eileen M. Samitz
Time is of the essence for anyone concerned about the inevitable negative effects that would come with almost 900 students living at University Mall. The proposed “University Commons” redevelopment project and Final Environmental Impact Report (or FEIR) will be on the Planning Commission agenda for a public hearing next Wednesday evening, May 27th. The commission is being asked to make a recommendation to the City Council on whether to proceed with the project. As outlined in my article on December 15th, the proposed massive 7-story building will put another big concentration of students close to already heavily-impacted neighborhoods, without improving retail opportunities for Davis residents.
It should not surprise anyone familiar with the University Mall area that the FEIR determines that the University Commons Project “…would result in significant and unavoidable impacts related to transportation and circulation.” The proposed project continues to pose many important but unanswered questions in terms of parking, neighborhood spillover outcomes and other concerns summarized below.
To make your opinion count, please send an email to the Planning Commission now, and leave a voice mail comment for the commission by following the directions in the agenda notice posted Friday on the City website. It is important to express your concerns by leaving your public comment voicemail, limited to three minutes any time before the meeting, or before the item during the Wednesday, May 27th Planning Commission meeting at (530) 757-5693. Because public meetings remain off limits due to COVID-19, the Commission meeting will occur on Zoom (see the Zoom link for the meeting via the agenda link below), and recorded project comments will be read aloud to the commissioners during the meeting. To leave a public comment that will be read during the meeting, follow the May 27th agenda link below, and follow the instructions under “public comments”. The meeting be viewed via ZOOM or on cable TV on channel 16. Please be sure to review the staff report.
Here is the Planning Commission Agenda:
Here is the U-Mall EIR Staff report:
The FEIR and updated documents about the project are on the City website, at this link: