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Redding City Council hosts first public workshop on possible Riverfront Property sale

The first of four public workshops discussing the possible sale of land around the Redding Civic Auditorium covered the process the City of Redding will have to follow before considering a sale.

Posted: Oct 13, 2021 10:28 PM

REDDING, Calif. - The Redding City Council hosted the first of four public workshops to discuss the possible sale of land that includes Turtle Bay Exploration Park, The Redding Civic Auditorium, and The Redding Rodeo.

Tonight’s workshop focused on the retail policies and procedures the city will have to follow before considering a sale, focusing on what surplus land is.

Before the city can negotiate to sell public land, they must declare it “surplus”.

This means the city would have to declare that the Riverfront Property is no longer useful for municipal purposes.

Once the city does that, they must offer priority to any affordable housing developers for 60 days according to a 2019 amendment in the California Surplus Land Act.

If any affordable housing developers are interested in the land, the city then must negotiate in good faith for no less than 90 days.
If no deal is made after those 90 days, then the city can hear from other developers.

After the policies and procedures were explained, the McConnell Foundation and Populous presented their plans for the area which included new businesses, restaurants, and livable spaces for the Riverfront Property.

While some people were excited the area could be developed into something new, most people at the meeting want to make sure important Redding attractions like the Redding Rodeo are protected.

“It’s still one of the few things that we have left that haven’t been taken away from our community is our rodeo,” Redding local Aleta Burssard said. “They were talking about keeping the garden of lights, but they didn’t say anything about the rodeo. What are they going to do with the rodeo? Where are they going to move?”

While people at the meeting were worried that the Riverfront Property could change into something unrecognizable to Redding, some people, like Redding local Gail Hedrick, are optimistic about what a company like the McConnell Foundation could do for the area.

“I would be highly approving of them because they were part of the Sundial Bridge, and they’ve done other things in this community,” Hedrick said. “I would really love to see that; I think that would be fine.”

No decisions will be made on how the city will move forward with the possible sale until the final workshop in November.

Populous and The McConnell Foundation will be at every workshop to present their plan and to answer questions from the public.

For more information on the public workshops, click here.

The next three workshops will be held in the Redding City Council Chambers.

Public Workshop topics and dates are listed below:

  • Master Plan Discussion - Wednesday, Oct. 27 at 5:15 p.m.
  • Land Restrictions Discussion - Wednesday, Nov. 10 at 5:15 p.m.
  • Summary and City Council Direction Discussion - Thursday, Nov. 18 at 5:15 p.m.

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