Group eyeing redevelopment for ‘Y’ area
Step aside, Heavenly Village. There’s a new kid in town ready for a face-lift. A team of diverse citizens has officially rolled out its vision to spruce up the other end of town and make the Tahoe Valley area, known as the “Y,” more pedestrian and shopper friendly.
The sky’s the limit when it comes to ideas to better the community at a busy section of town – namely the four corners encompassing the Kmart, Mikasa and Factory Stores centers.
“The key to our success is the four corners,” said Darrel Schue, who’s been serving for a year on the Tahoe Valley Community Plan team.
The community plan is developed as the framework for rehabilitation of an area that covers the dealership aisle on Highway 50 to the medical corridor to Third Street.
After unveiling its draft plan to an agreeable City Council last week, the team is ready to expand on its vision.
Also on the team are: Mark Lucksinger, Frank Jones, Nicole Zaborsky, Steve Leman, Vee Gay, Tony Colombo, Patrick Frega, Deb Howard, Jenny Cooper, Steve Kosmides, Jerome Evans, Edward Orbock, Stacey Ballard, Bruce Eisner, with Tahoe Regional Planning Agency representative John Hitchcock and city planner Lisa O’Daly.
Its completion is years away.
The group batted around several ideas at its twice-a-month meeting Tuesday to present its plan to prospective businesses, the general public and major property owners such as Raley’s – which may have ideas to extend its parking lot into the former Shell station parcel on the corner.
City Manager Dave Jinkens sent a letter to those property owners to get them to the table.
The group wants to hear from all sides of the community and has scheduled a field trip Oct. 12 at 2 p.m. at City Council Chambers to hear further ideas.
And remember, no idea is a stupid one.
Close your eyes. Now imagine a clocktower where events are staged and people gather. Envision a cluster of businesses that complement each other – some with perhaps a cooperative work-space agreement to share commercial rent. See park benches under trees where people can eat lunch between shopping runs. Also imagine walking and bicycle paths which invite people to stroll through a section of town that gives visitors an impression about that city.
“We’d like a Class 1 route from Camp Richardson down Highway 50 to the (Lake Tahoe) Airport,” said Evans, who serves on the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission.
And there are more simple changes that could have a lasting effect – given an inviting environment’s impact on the economy.
“We need trees. Trees are the least expensive and most effective (way) to improve an area,” he said while out on a stroll of the “Y.” The number of trees are limited in that area.
“There’s enormous potential here. But there could be enormous hurdles,” Evans said.
– Susan Wood can be reached at (530) 542-8009 or via e-mail at email@example.com