Vista developer plans appeal for housing project

Vista developer plans appeal for housing project
Community activists post a sign on Oro Avo Drive off of Buena Vista Creek Road alerting residents to a public hearing on the proposed Country Estates development project. The developer, Joseph Jaoudi, is appealing a denial from the county’s planning commission on receiving a time extension on the project’s tentative map. Photo by Tony Cagala

VISTA — A developer’s longtime housing project is expected to come back in front of county supervisors again.

Joseph Jaoudi is appealing a ruling made last year by the San Diego County Planning Commission to deny him a time extension on the tentative map for his housing project called the Country Estates.

Jaoudi filed an appeal to the County Board of Supervisors on Aug. 10, 2016, five days after the commission’s denial.

He’s asking the board to overturn the planning commission’s ruling and grant a time extension on the project’s tentative map.

A date for the appeal hearing, however, has yet to be announced.

The filed appeal document shows that Jaoudi “disagrees with the rationale of the Planning Director for denying the application for a Tentative Map Time Extension.”

If developed, the project would subdivide 77.9 acres on Deeb Drive into 55 residential lots ranging in size from 0.5 acre to 1.6 acres, and provide three open space lots.

It has drawn criticism from residents in the area who see the project as not being a “fit for the community,” and one that would significantly impact traffic along Deer Springs Road, which many commuters already use as a cut through to avoid driving on state Route 78.

The project has been in the works for close to 30 years, being first proposed in September of 1987.

In 2005, the Board of Supervisors approved the project’s tentative map. Following the approval, the project had received more time extensions, bringing the map’s expiration date up to May 23, 2016.

Residents, at the planning commission hearing, said a time extension shouldn’t be given, claiming the 2005-approved tentative map was now outdated with the number of environmental ordinances having changed since then.

The tentative map can only be recorded as a final map when it has met state and county standards.

Jaoudi had been working on the completion of the tentative map for 11 years before going to the Planning Commissioners last year to seek another time extension.

A staff report at the time of the commission hearing showed that Jaoudi hadn’t completed all of the necessary information needed to record the final map, including stormwater and water quality requirements, biological mitigation, a noise monitor contract that wasn’t received and a resource management plan that wasn’t submitted to address sensitive flora.

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