Rancho residents still critical of scaled down development proposal

Nearly 30 residents packed City Hall on Tuesday to oppose a planned residential development for the Rancho neighborhood, even after it was scaled down in new plans submitted to the city.

The developer, New Urban West, on Friday revised its original 120-unit condominium project on Riverside Drive to include 50 single-family homes. Tom Zanic, senior vice-president at the firm, called the reduction a “pretty significant difference” that was meant to allay community concerns about impacts to density and public infrastructure.

But on Tuesday, many residents told the City Council that the revision was not enough.

They said the lot sizes aren’t large enough to accommodate horses, and noted that the absence of any paths for horses and their riders.

Jay Geisenheimer, a 15-year Rancho resident, horse owner and member of the Rancho Review Board, thanked the developer for reducing the number of units.

“But it’s still not ready for prime time,” she said. “How do you build a non-equestrian project in the most coveted equestrian neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley and leave out the horse?”

Zanic has said the 50-home plan is as much of reduction his firm can do without going a completely different route.

-- Maria Hsin, Times Community News

Twitter: @mariahsin

Photo: The former GM Training site on the 1100 block of W. Riverside Drive in Burbank has become the subject of back-and-forth between residents and a developer. Credit: Times Community News

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