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Solano Fairgrounds meeting yields few comments

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From page A4 | December 12, 2012 | 2 Comments

FAIRFIELD — Only three members of the public spoke at a meeting Tuesday designed to solicit comments for the proposed development at the Solano County Fairgrounds.

The Solano County Board of Supervisors met with consultants, staff, the Solano County Fair Board and the public to discuss an update to the Solano 360 project and to receive comments from the public on the environmental impact report.

Nearly all comments from the public centered around financial questions, rather than environmental concerns. The period to enter a comment for the report is Jan. 10.

Solano 360 is the proposed $94 million project to overhaul the 149 acres of Solano County Fairgrounds in Vallejo by adding entertainment, retail, a creek walk and a host of other improvements.

The project includes using 35 acres as a place to stage the annual county fair and other events, with most of the existing structures torn down and replaced. Another 49 acres would be used for private development, including shops, restaurants and an area with outdoor rides, much like an amusement park.

Much of the night focused on pages of financial documents, with consultants painting a picture of projections based on market values for a project likely to take 25 years for full build out.

Solano 360 has been a vision of the board for four years and has at times divided the board. Several changes and versions of reports have been published as the project has been crafted.

Supervisor Linda Seifert had numerous questions for staff and consultants, one being if they have been keeping current with projections as the years pass. She was assured that current figures were being used.

Dan Levin, a Vallejo resident, said he was hesitant to believe in projections about an economy and business trends 20 years down the road. He also said that no businesses had been secured for the site.

“I’m for development. I want to support the fair,” he said. “But to me, this is almost bordering on bizarre.”

Reach Danny Bernardini at 427-6935 or dbernardini@dailyrepublic.net. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/dbernardinidr.

Danny Bernardini

Danny Bernardini

Danny is a newspaper man born and raised in Vacaville. He attended Chico State University and has written for the Enterprise Record and the Reporter. Covers the City of Fairfield, education and crime. A's, Warriors and Saints fan. Listener of vinyl, frequent visitor to the East Bay. Registered "decline to state" voter. Loves a good steak.
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Discussion | 2 comments

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  • George Guynn, JrDecember 12, 2012 - 10:54 am

    It will be 50 years till the bonds are paid off and the facility will be ready for another rebuilt by then, if not sooner. Even worse, what if the $94 million plus is spent and the projects are too optimistic on the revenue? Taxpayers, open up your wallet again!!!!!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • FDCDecember 12, 2012 - 2:46 pm

    This whole project is the worst form of pie in the sky. Rosy projections for the future never, NEVER are accurate enough to use for multimillion dollar "feel good" jobs. Just follow the money: Who stands to gain now and in the future with real dollars in their pockets? Not you or I nor any other taxpayer. Humbug! We must do whatever it takes to derail this fantasy project.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
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