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On November 10, 2021, Citrus Heights City Council unanimously voted in favor of adopting the Sunrise Tomorrow Specific Plan and its associated Environmental Impact Report, rezoning, and General Plan amendment.“Sunrise Mall has long been in decline, due to changing retail trends,” said Chris Boyd, Interim City Manager. “We know our community wants to see the site brought back to its former glory, and the adoption of our Specific Plan is a huge step in that process. Unlocking the 100-acre mall property for future mixed-use development, as opposed to keeping the site all retail, means mall owners now have the opportunity to densify, diversify, and breathe new life into the heart of our City.”
Citrus Heights is a community that is 98 percent built out, meaning there are few opportunities for new development. Working with mall owners, thousands of community members, experts in the field, and elected officials, City staff and the Gensler consulting team honed a vision for the site and then drafted a data-driven plan for realizing the collective vision. Rezoning the site to encourage revitalization also involved creating and certifying an in depth Environmental Impact Report (over 4,000 pages), reporting and approving California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) findings, and adopting a Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program.The majority owner at Sunrise Mall, Namdar Realty Group, was among the many to submit a letter of support in favor of the City’s Specific Plan. “We greatly appreciate you and your staff’s diligent efforts to be collaborative in establishing the vision for the future of Sunrise Mall,” said Chief Executive Officer Igal Namdar in his letter. “We look forward to advancing our plans for the site.”The Sunrise Tomorrow Specific Plan:
Note: The units of housing, office, hotel, community/institutional, and retail proposed in the Sunrise Tomorrow Specific Plan reflect maximum units permitted. Actual development at the site will vary.“Our specific plan lays the groundwork for transforming the Sunrise Mall site into a vibrant mixed-used community creating a destination for our residents to live, shop, work, and play,” said Boyd. “And while the plan is momentous in that right alone, I also know that this project has the potential to serve as a national case study in how local government, when armed with motivated staff and an engaged community, can influence real, meaningful change when it comes to economic stewardship.”
To learn more about the work that went into developing the Sunrise Tomorrow Specific Plan, visit SunriseTomorrow.net.
The Sunrise Mall will remain open through redevelopment, which will be completed in phases, likely starting with converting the surplus parking. The City encourages the community to continue to shop and attend events at the Sunrise Mall. The Specific Plan implementation is flexible and incremental. Sunrise Mall will continue to operate, but if/when it cannot any longer, this plan will serve as a toolbox for accelerated revitalization.
Now that the Sunrise Tomorrow Specific Plan has been adopted, mall owners may begin redeveloping their properties in alignment with the plan’s new uses and zoning. The Specific Plan was guided by “Five Big Ideas,” that reflect feedback from the community and stakeholders: Community & Regional Destination, Green Network, Streets for People, Livable Neighborhoods, and Economic Engine.
When paired with in depth research and data around the types of development that are realistic for the Citrus Heights market, the Five Big Ideas evolved into a site plan, which staff refer to as a “21st Century Main Street” concept. The concept includes:
Again, redevelopment of the site will be completed in phases. Now that the Sunrise Tomorrow Specific Plan has been adopted, staff will continue their work to catalyze development aligned with the plan. This will include promoting development opportunities, working closely with mall owners and potential mixed-use developers, and more.
- Watch the presentation of the November 10 Council
- Download the November 10 presentation slides
- Visit SunriseTomorrow.net to see the research and outreach that led to the Specific Plan Draft
- Review the Specific Plan and EIR