Chico City Council to Vote on StoneGate Project

The decision has some environmentalists worried about the impacts on the endangered Meadowfoam that thrives on the project site.

Posted: Sep 18, 2018 4:33 AM
Updated: Sep 18, 2018 1:45 PM

Chico, Calif, - Tonight in Chico, the City Council will vote on whether or not to approve a development project that will force the relocation of an endangered plant species.

The StoneGate project planned along Bruce Road would eventually fill 313 acres with apartments, homes and businesses.

The plan is to fill 13 acres with apartment buildings along Bruce Road, build nearly 500 houses around them and create 24 acres of businesses.

131 acres of open green space will be left, and developers say this is where they would relocate a plant called Meadowfoam. It's used to make oil and cosmetics, and this particular type only exists in Butte County.

A representative for the Native Species Society says this area is the heart of the endangered plant, and their group does not believe that the project's plan to relocate the seeds to the other side of Bruce Road is sufficient. They say it's never been proven to work.

Nonetheless, the City Planning Commission approved the plan in August, approving the environmental impact study as sufficient, and noting that it's up to the state and federal regulators to approve the project before the work can actually start.

If the City Council gives the green light on Sept. 18, there will still be oversight along the way from the Department of Fish and Wildlife as well as the Army Corps of Engineers.

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