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Whether you’re new to Chico, lived here a long time, or are a born and raised local, you understand the “Chico vibe.” It’s a feeling, a way of life, a sense of place.
We believe in keeping Chico, Chico.
Valley’s Edge is designed to cultivate connections—both to the land and each other. Intentionally designed neighborhoods woven together with open space and connected trailways lead to the following:
That’s the Chico we’d like to see continue.
The Valley’s Edge Specific Plan outlines how it will meet (and exceed) the City of Chico’s sustainability vision (via the General Plan). The opposition claims Valley’s Edge will create greenhouse gas emissions. That’s true. All construction does. However, Valley’s Edge will be built over the next 20-30 years. Their claims of massive greenhouse emissions all at once aren’t true. And, guess what? Their high-rise apartments create greenhouse gasses during construction, too. Don’t buy into their exaggerations.
By denying your ability to afford a home in Chico, the nay-sayers are creating more greenhouse gas emissions by forcing locals like yourself to have longer commutes to work, to drive further to take your kids to school, to visit family, and to shop.
Forcing locals to live longer distances from their life hub makes public transportation even less realistic, increases traffic congestion, and greatly inhibits your ability (or your child’s) to safely ride bikes to school, work, or the store. Their logic is flawed, pure and simple.
In January 2023, the Valley’s Edge Specific Plan was approved with public support.
It’s an award-winning comprehensive plan that exceeds the City of Chico’s 2030 General Plan designed by locals like you.
The people of Chico deemed the area of Valley’s Edge a designated area for housing years ago. Once again, the opposition feeds the fire of untruths by claiming housing doesn’t belong there. Chico locals planned for the future and that future is now.
Housing should go where food doesn’t grow. Valley’s Edge protects vital agricultural land from development and adheres to sustainable, smart growth as defined by Smartgrowthamerica.org. There are 10 principles of smart growth, all of which Valley’s Edge meets, but of course, the opposition who claims to be focused on smart growth, flat out ignores the fact that Valley’s Edge meets them:
Valley’s Edge has a healthy mix of housing choices, commercial, open space, a future school site, plus community + regional parks.
Building around natural resources such as heritage oak trees and rock walls, the plan calls for distinct design and styles to leverage space in the most effective way possible.
Valley’s Edge offers a home for every budget from cottages, apartments, subsidized housing, single-family homes, senior housing, and a few ranchettes.
Valley’s Edge is a community surrounded by a park. Over 26 miles of trails and bikeways weave throughout the community creating a walkable community.
Community parks, common areas to mix and mingle, a village core – all attributes to create a sense of place.
Over half of Valley’s Edge’s total land is dedicated to community parks, a public regional park, and undeveloped open space. 5,000+ heritage oaks are to be preserved, historical rock walls and wagon ruts will be protected, and the comprehensive Environmental Impact Report shows no endangered species are threatened.
Built in the southeast quadrant of Chico, Valley’s Edge has direct (and close) access to major employment and shopping hubs, making for short commutes whether via vehicle, bike, public transit, or walking.
Electric vehicles within the development (it’s all electric!), proximity to public transit, bike trails, and walking paths. Getting around is easy.
Valley’s Edge has been a part of the City of Chico’s 2030 General Plan since 2011 – it’s where Chico has planned to grow. The Plan, created with input from the City and its residents, provides a comprehensive and long-range framework for the growth and preservation of Chico. Valley’s Edge is the blueprint for how Smart Growth should be done.
Over 15 years and hundreds of tours, group meetings, and conversations have gone into the development of Valley’s Edge. It’s been a collaborative, two-way discussion every step of the way.
Valley’s Edge includes the largest gift of public parkland to the public in over 100 years—over 400 acres of parks, trails, and open space—open to everyone to enjoy.
Bird watching? YES!
Exploration of oak woodlands and rocky terrain? YES!
Mountain Biking, horseback riding, and hiking? OH YES!
Playgrounds for the kiddos? YOU BET!
Fitness areas for an outdoor change of pace? YEP!
Walking and running trails? 25+ MILES!
Whether or not you live in Valley’s Edge, this open space is for all to enjoy. It’s a big part of what makes Chico, Chico!
Yet a small group of anti-growth elitists believe only their version of affordable, smart-growth housing is what everyone wants. How unfair is that?
Affordability is a tricky word. What’s affordable to someone just getting started in life differs from someone who has been in the workforce for years. Renters or homeowners—it doesn’t matter. Affordable is relative to one’s current economic position. The way the opposition lumps everyone into one category is not only wrong for those who want to change the type of house they live in—it’s tragic.
Economic Benefit Analysis prepared for the City of Chico (by DFA July 2022) Measure P is anticipated to produce $18 million in taxable sales annually, generating more than $1 million in total sales tax annually. These sales tax dollars will support various government entities from the State level to local transportation.
Right now, young families and individuals looking to buy their first homes are being priced out of the market. Multiple offers compete for a single home, resulting in a selling price often tens of thousands of dollars over the asking price.
Retail workers, nurses, veterinarians/vet techs, teachers, firefighters, construction workers, and police officers—all professions we desperately need more of in our community—struggle to find a place to call home in Chico. It’s happening across all levels of housing from those in entry-level positions to more experienced professionals.
When more housing options are added to the market, there is greater availability of all kinds of housing, and people can choose what kind of home they want—they won’t be stuck with whatever is left at a super high price.
We believe everyone should have a choice in the type of housing that fits their lifestyle. And we’d bet a finger-wagging elitist you agree.
You read that right. Several leaders in the opposition to Valley’s Edge live outside city limits. They own large homes in high-fire-risk canyons with lots of space between neighbors. They have plenty of room for their kids and grandkids to play. They have their space, but you can’t have yours. You’ll be forced to live in a high-rise if they have their way. As outsiders, they are trying to control what kind of home you live in by telling you how to vote. It’s hypocritical and downright elitist.
Traditionally affordable neighborhoods such as Chapmantown will likely battle gentrification. Similar to what has happened across the country, those with more money will drive home prices up and build out larger homes, displacing current residents and threatening the charm of these neighborhoods.
Keeping a healthy mix of housing to keep housing prices in line keeps gentrification at bay.
And if Valley’s Edge doesn’t defeat this referendum? Somebody else is going to get this land. The landowner’s plan B? It will be divided into large lots and will likely be built out with big homes. It’s a loss to the public and the environment. And, the people who claim to care about Chico the most, will be to blame.
Loretta Ann Torres
Federico Martinez Jr.
Andres Lopez Garcia