Tuesday, July 6, 2021
Virtual Meeting via ZOOM
Present: Deborah Barmack, Carole Beswick, Greg Bradbard, Mike Burrows, Ken Coate, Kevin Dyerly, Louis Goodwin, Otis Greer, Milford Harrison, Fran Inman, Mark Kaenel, Lena Kent, Lowell King, Pam Langford, Bill Lemann, Darcy McNaboe, John Mirau, Dan Murphy, Vikki Ostermann, Bansree Parikh, Steve PonTell, Catherine Pritchett, Thomas Rice, Karen Richmond, Michael Rivera, Dan Roberts, Dan Schenkel, Kristine Scott, Paul Shimoff, Sol Teh, Eric Ustation, Pete Van Helden, Reggie Webb, Dr. Judy White, and Frank Zabaleta.
Guests: Julian Cuevas, Kate Salvesen, and Arnold San Miguel.
Announcements: 1) Next week Inland Action will have part 2 of the Sustainable Supply Chain discussion. 2) The Inland Empire Community Foundation will formally launch its Office of Policy & Engagement. A launch event will be held on Thursday, July 22, 20021 from 9-10:30 a.m. Many regional elected officials and leaders of numerous non-profits will be in attendance. Discussions will include robust conversations on how we can better organize regionally to help pipeline our priorities with our elected officials. For more information please go to “Leading Together in the IE”: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/iecf-policy-engagement-launch-leading-together-in-the-ie-registration-161677123629?keep_tld=1 3) Mark Kaenel, Treasurer expressed appreciation to the membership for their vigilance and achieving a zero balance on our Accounts Receivable for the last quarter.
Lowell King, Chair, presiding.
Motion by L. Goodwin/Second by M. Harrison/Passed: Minutes from June 22, 2021
Dan Schenkel introduced the Master Developers known as RDICO: Jian Torkan, Principal, ICO Real Estate Group; Donald Monti, CEO, Renaissance Downtowns USA and Ernesto Hidalgo, RDICO, Project Manager.
RDICO is a joint venture between two triple-bottom-line developers, Renaissance Downtowns USA and ICO Group of Companies. Both are committed to their mission of creating healthy, vibrant, and sustainable communities for people from all walks of life while adhering to principles of social, environmental, and economic responsibilities. Their shared vision is to collaborate with community stakeholders and municipalities to co-create equitable transit-oriented development to maximize social returns on investment. The RIDCO team believes that “If you do good, you’ll do well”.
The selection of a Master Developer by the City of San Bernardino has created a new and exciting opportunity for growth and development in their downtown area. Currently some 20K government employees work in the downtown district and the City’s proximity to the San Bernardino Regional Transit Center and the sbX High-Speed Bus Rapid Transit System symbolizes an enormous opportunity to bring about positive transformation through the strategic intersection of land use and transportation. Both State and Federal grants are available for this type of transit-oriented housing.
The RDICO Team explained that suburban downtown redevelopment can only succeed if done in a holistic and comprehensive manner. The all too common ‘infill development’ approach will not work to revitalize a disinvested suburban downtown since a vibrant downtown is a complex living ecosystem which requires the interaction of all to thrive. A collaborative partnership between the City and RDICO will result in the co-creation of a 21st Century development program that will make San Bernardino a model for transformative suburban downtown redevelopment throughout California. Downtown San Bernardino needs a total re-activation of their central business district to create a walkable pedestrian-friendly environment where people can live, work, shop, learn and play. This transformation can only be accomplished in a responsible manner and timeframe under the auspices of a Master Developer working collaboratively to co-author and help implement a shared vision with community stakeholders and the municipality. The San Bernardino City council is aligned and are unanimously supportive and are pushing the project forward.
As Master Developer, RDICO believes very strongly that Downtown San Bernardino’s development timeframe can be dramatically reduced through custom-tailored zoning enhancements vis-à-vis an opt-in Form-Based Zoning Code that could yield as many as 15,000 units of attainable housing as part of a sustainable, vibrant, and thriving downtown. A form-based zoning code encourages property owners to aggregate their properties in order to participate and maximize their development opportunities. By working collaboratively under this overlay zone all stakeholders stand to benefit by participating in this inclusive process and to realize the value created by the certainty resulting from the approval of sustainable entitlements. If this zoning is accomplished developers can go directly to the parcel they want to develop potentially saving millions and incurring far less risk. Both housing and retail will be developed together, and the creation of construction jobs are estimated at 3K with some 10K permanent jobs.
Provisions outlining the terms and conditions of a Community Benefits Agreement should be part of the community-driven Form-Based Code. This mandate ensures that residents and local businesses in communities targeted for redevelopment are given opportunities for construction jobs, contract awards and careers so that they can also participate in this newly created live, work, shop, learn and play environment.
The potential for a sustainable revitalization strategy can be realized through the creation of a holistic and comprehensive approach which allows for the City, community stakeholders and Master Developer to co-create a development program built on the Carousel Mall site as the catalyst for transformation of Downtown San Bernardino into the epicenter of the Inland Empire— and as a 21st century model for development throughout the country.
A Unified Development Approach Revitalization Action Plan (UDA) provides a framework that facilitates a comprehensive mixed-use and transit-oriented redevelopment strategy that brings together community stakeholders, private property owners and transit agencies to collaboratively create and implement a shared, holistic redevelopment vision. This strategy helps to ensure project sustainability, thereby maximizing social, environmental, and economic benefits as well as eliminating the need for eminent domain or displacement proceedings. This inclusive strategy creates an alignment between the Master Developer and private property owners that would otherwise have resulted in the potential for competing interests.
A Q & A period followed.
Meeting adjourned at 9:00 a.m.