Courtesy of City of Thousand Oaks Website:
Thousand Oaks Auto Mall Freeway Monument Sign - Community Meetings
Location: Los Robles Greens Golf Course – Banquet Center, 299 S. Moorpark Road, Thousand Oaks
Dates: 6:00 PM on Wednesday, January 26th and 6:00 PM on Thursday, February 10th
The Thousand Oaks Auto Mall lies on 54 acres along Thousand Oaks Boulevard between Duesenberg Drive, Packard Circle, and the 101 Freeway. The Auto Mall employs approximately 1,000 people, consistently generating almost one-quarter of the City’s annual sales tax revenues. In the past four years, the Auto Mall has generated more than $28 Million in sales tax revenue to the City.
In recent years, the dealerships have been working with the City to improve the appearance and navigability of the Auto Mall. Along with pedestrian amenities and aged streetscaping, the primary concern is the lack of available parking for both customers and employees. In fact, as a Top Priority for FY 2007-2008, the Thousand Oaks City Council directed staff to develop a plan to mitigate parking issues at the Auto Mall.
On January 12, 2010, City Council authorized design for the Auto Mall project. Due to the significance of this undertaking, the City Council formed an Ad Hoc Citizens Auto Mall Advisory Committee. The Ad Hoc Committee met five times between February and June 2010 to review conceptual designs and make recommendations. The final report by the Citizen Ad Hoc Committee contained recommendations on the angled parking, landscaping, way-finder signage, and a new freeway monument sign.
At the December 14, 2010 meeting, City Council approved all the necessary plans and permits for the project to move forward, with the exception the freeway monument sign. At the request of the Auto Mall Association, the monument sign was not considered by City Council at the December 14th meeting, in order to receive additional community feedback and insight regarding the sign before making a decision. After completing additional public outreach and receiving community feedback, the Auto Mall Association will bring the item to City Council on February 22, 2011.
Who is paying for the new Auto Mall sign? The costs to construct, operate, and maintain the monument sign will be paid entirely by the Auto Mall Association. No City funds are being used to construct the Auto Mall monument sign.Previously, City Council committed $2 Million towards the other components of the project, (parking improvements, landscaping, etc.) none of which is to be used to construct the monument sign, if approved. Since 2001, the Auto Mall has generated $8 million in incremental property tax revenues for the Redevelopment Agency (RDA), with an additional $1.3 million expected in fiscal year 2010-11. The majority of the parking and landscaping costs ($6 Million) will be paid by the formation of a Community Facilities District (CFD) for the Auto Mall area. The property owners within the CFD will impose a special tax on themselves to finance the improvements in the Auto Mall.
Will the sign be precedent-setting? If approved, the monument sign will not set a precedent for digital reader boards in the City of Thousand Oaks. The approval is specific to the Auto Mall zone only; any other similar sign would require separate approvals by the Planning Commission and City Council. The existing Auto Mall sign was constructed in 1994 through the application of a special use permit. In a similar fashion, the proposed monument sign has undergone numerous iterations within the Advisory Committee, opened to public hearings, considered by the Planning Commission, and will eventually be considered by the City Council. In each stage, the necessity and appropriateness of the sign is evaluated.
More information and Q&As at www.toaks.org/government/depts/public_works/current_projects/auto_mall_improvement_project/default.asp