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Environmental Groups Are Challenging Plan To Declare City Owned Land Surplus Property

A coalition of environmentalist groups is challenging a plan by the Redding City Council to discuss a “surplus property” declaration for the Civic Auditorium/Rodeo Grounds area. The issue is on the council agenda for Tuesday. It’s a necessary step before entering negotiations for the sale of the 200 acres into private interests. A major developer and ballpark builder called Populous, along with the McConnell Foundation and K2 Development, have elaborate plans for that 200 acres, of which the public has so far seen only a glimpse. A group that includes the local Audubon and Sierra Club Chapters and Shasta Environmental Alliance has hired a San Francisco law firm to argue that the surplus designation cannot legally be done until a full environmental review is done for the proposed project. The group sites state regulations as well as the city’s master plan. The city had consulted with state officials prior to resuming the discussion, according to City Manager Barry Tippin. The environmentalists say the cultural, natural, recreational, historical and other impacts have not been properly addressed. The most up-to-date information from the city can be found at cityofredding.org/landdiscussion.