After two decades of discussions of transit-oriented development (TOD), Sacramento Regional Transit (RT) is moving forward on implementation, building residential and mixed-use projects stations on its South, Folsom and Northeast Lines. The transition from planning to implementation is due to a coming together of several factors:
- A growing market for in-fill housing in the Sacramento region.
- A transit agency board and general manager emphasizing implementation.
- The financial participation of the city and county governments.
- The programming of transit and planning funds to TOD projects by the local Council of Governments.
Emerging TOD Projects in Sacramento
The six TOD projects in various stages of pre-construction are at Royal Oaks, Power Inn, Butterfield, Cemo Circle, 65th Street and Sunrise. A brief summary of each follows, with an identification of certain common key characteristics.
1. Royal Oaks
The Royals Oaks station is near downtown Sacramento, on the Northeast line. RT owned several parcels totaling 2.8 acres adjacent to the station. It packaged these parcels and issued an RFP to the development community. New Faze Development, a local Sacramento-based firm headquartered near the station, was chosen. New Faze is moving rapidly through pre-construction. It expects to get entitlements by early 2008, and complete construction by early 2010. The project design, shown in figure 1, consists of two buildings and 107 residential units, with 17,000 square feet of ground floor retail.
2. Power Inn
The Power Inn station, on the Folsom line, has one of the largest land parcels owned by RT, 13 acres. Power Inn has been the object of study for two decades, but serious development progress started in 2005, with an RFP for development. Costa Pacific/Trammel Crow (Costa Pacific) was chosen in March 2006. The current $67 million plan, shown in figure 2, calls for 286 residential units, 27,000 square feet of retail and 30,000 square feet in commercial office space.
The Butterfield station, also on the Folsom line, has a 3.4-acre adjacent surface parking lot. In early 2006, Costa Pacific was the successful bidder in RT’s development competition. Costa Pacific’s current plan is for 109 residential units and 15,000 square feet of retail. Costa Pacific expects to have entitlements in early 2008 and construction completed in 2010.
4. Cemo Circle
The Cemo Circle TOD is in pre-construction at a 7.9-acre site owned by RT, adjacent to a future bus rapid transit (BRT) station. The TOD was proposed by an adjacent landowner, and combines 150 residential units with a pedestrian bridge and an adjacent 75-space park-and-ride.
5. 65th Street
At the 65th Street station, near the California State University campus, RT is working with an adjacent landowner for a TOD on an assembled 4-acre site. The 2.1-acre RT parcel currently serves as a bus drop-off, which will need to be relocated. The city redevelopment agency and local city councilmember have been active in tying the TOD into a broader transit village project for neighborhood revitalization.
At the Sunrise station, a station on the Folsom line, RT owns a 5.5-acre parcel being used as a park-and-ride. A local housing developer recently presented a plan to RT for a 200 unit development with neighborhood-serving retail, which RT staff is seeking to advance.
These six TODs differ in densities, designs and target markets. However, they share certain common characteristics that are elements in defining a TOD: