Project on verge of approval

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By SCOTT PESZNECKER

A proposed, large-scale housing development in Copperopolis could soon be a step closer to reality.

Calaveras County supervisors are scheduled to vote Monday on the development agreement for the 3,251-acre, 2,675-home Oak Canyon, Ranch project. Two weeks ago,the board approved the project's environmental impact report, zoning and specific plan.

If supervisors approve the development agreement, construction at Oak Canyon Ranch could start in April 2005, developers have said.

Subdivision maps and get building permits would still be necessary before building can actually begin.

Oak Canyon Ranch has plans for 2,275 houses, two golf courses and a resort area with shops, restaurants and 800 tourist accommodation units, such as hotel rooms and time-shares. Also in the resort would be 400 full-time residential units, such as condominiums and apartments.

The project would be south of Highway 4 on both sides of Little John Road, north of Copper Cove Drive.

Also Monday, supervisors will talk about how to respond to a lawsuit to be filed by Tuolumne County.

Tuolumne County supervisors claim Calaveras violated the California Environmental Quality Act by approving Oak Canyon's environmental impact report.

They contend that the EIR should require Oak Canyon developers to pay their fair share of road improvements on O'Byrnes Ferry Road in Tuolumne County. That includes the road's intersection with Highway 108, the most accident-prone intersection in the county.

As worded now, the EIR only calls for project developers to discuss a road fee with Tuolumne County officials.

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The Union Democrat
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