City Council could pave way for 142 new homes in San Luis Obispo

A proposal on newly annexed land is for 142 homes, including rentals, senior units

acornejo@thetribunenews.comSeptember 30, 2013 

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The San Luis Obispo City Council will be asked Tuesday night to approve a map detailing the layout for a large residential development planned for the Orcutt Road area.

Wingate Homes, a 10-acre site in the northeastern area of the Orcutt Area Specific Plan, will include 142 homes built in a blend of housing styles designed to appeal to high-end buyers as well as families and seniors.

According to plans submitted to the city, the preliminary design for the project includes 45 single-family homes, 33 single-family terraced homes, 12 loft-style apartments and 52 senior flats.

Of those, 30 percent — or 30 units — will be affordable homes, meeting the affordability requirements for moderate, low or very low income households.

Wingate Homes is the first residential development in the area to emerge since a specific plan for the area was adopted and the area was annexed by the city in 2011. It will set the tone for future development.

The developer anticipates construction will begin in 2014.

Homes built in the eastern portion of the project will include a mix of one- and two-story houses designed with a California Modern style, said Richard Taylor, principal of Wingate Holdings.

Landscaped back yards with patios, nine- to 14-foot ceilings inside, European-style kitchens and hard-surface floors will be included.

Taylor said the “smart home” design will allow homeowners to control temperatures, lock doors and turn on the lights with their iPads. Sustainable features include native plants, solar panels and rain barrels for water conservation.

Those homes will likely range from $300,000s to the $700,000s, Taylor said.

Once the first phase has been built, affordable housing will follow, he said. A price range for rental and affordable homes was not available.

The 33 single-family terraced homes will be three stories high, have two or three bedrooms, large garages and large living rooms, Taylor said. The units will feature 10-foot ceilings and private yards. The homes will be situated around a park.

The 12 loft-style apartments, intended to be rentals, will also be built in the California Modern style and range in size from 1,000 to 1,200 square feet.

Floor-to-ceiling windows will face south and west for natural light.

A convenience store, a day care/preschool and a public park also are planned. A sculptural fountain — to pay homage to the workers who camped in the area during the construction of the railroad — will be located in the park.

The senior flats, planned to be rentals, will be incorporated into the mixed-use portion of the project to provide easy access to services, Taylor said.

Seniors will have the option of using concierge services for daily needs such as grocery shopping, dog walking and house cleaning.

“The idea is to have the park, day care and seniors in the same area to provide seniors the ability to live where other families are living,” Taylor said. “If you have aging parents, they can live there, you can walk your kids to school and later walk to see the grandparents.”

If the City Council approves the map Tuesday night, the project must still go before the city’s Architectural Review Commission for design approval and before the Parks and Recreation Commission for the one-acre park.

It will then come back to the City Council for final approval before development can begin.

Reach AnnMarie Cornejo at 781-7939. Stay updated by following @a_cornejo on Twitter.

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