Mission Hills Square (Sabercat) Grading Plan approved (4/12)

This is sort of an oldie but a goodie. Back in 2007 the Sabercat development consisting of 158 condominiums and 55,000 sq. ft. of commercial/retail was proposed near Durham Rd. and I-680. The magnitude of the project (4 to 6 stories) made it very controversial at the time. It was denied in a 3-2 vote by the Planning Commission but approved 4-1 in an appeal to the City Council.

Sabercat2

The project location is near a rather steep slope. The engineers realized that the initial grading plan would need to be revised. Technically, it was just this grading plan that came before us. They need a series of four, six foot tall retaining walls to contain the land uphill from the project. They are going to try to hide these using landscaping but it’s going to be hard to hide 24 feet of walls.

What concerned me most was that this project is located right on the Hayward Fault. There is a State requirement that buildings must be located 50 or more feet from an active fault line. We were assured they would comply with this rule. In my opinion, it’s simply not safe to do that large of a building on sloped land right next to an active fault line. Lily Mei and I voted against the project but it was approved 3-2. So the Sabercat development is going forward nine years after being approved.

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2 comments on “Mission Hills Square (Sabercat) Grading Plan approved (4/12)”

  1. Suzette Swanson Reply

    I was one of the Inverness Ridge Homeowners who spoke at the City Council meeting back in 2007 and explained that part of the reason I live in Fremont is the open space. Allowing all the open space to get approved for development makes all of us “old timers” (who have paid taxes here for years) feel no one is listening to our “vision for the future”. Not a glowing endorsement for the other council members who were elected to represent us and let us down.

    This new development will not only be an eyesore to those of us that have lived in this city for 40+ years, but will also add to the existing gridlock on AutoMall/Durham. Does anyone from the City Council ever come and observe the current traffic each weekday (during the school year) from 7:30-9:00 am? Currently it takes 2-3 streetlight cycles just to get from Sabercat on to AutoMall. How will this get better by adding hundreds more cars to this overcrowded roadway? We cannot just keep building and expect the existing roadways to handle the increasing volume.

  2. Gary Walker Reply

    As a resident who lives just up the hill from this proposed development (Heritage Heights HOA), I have serious reservations about this. I have seen the activity at the area between Sabercat, Durham, and 680, but was unaware of this massive development on the open space. Part of what makes this part of Fremont so attractive to us is the open space and the horses, deer, and wild turkeys that roam free and the hawks and eagles that soar overhead. I would hate to see this habitat developed. The concerns that you raise about earthquake safety also are valid and thoughtful reasons not to move forward with this. Please continue to hold your position and oppose this development.

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