Plan would include 1400 acres and 4,000 housing units south of Folsom plus 1400 acres and 4,000 housing units in El Dorado County

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AKT Investments, in collaboration with UC Davis Health, is proposing what is cites as a “first-of-its-kind community dedicated to longer and healthier living for older adults and people with disabilities,” on property in Sacramento and El Dorado Counties. The proposed plans were submitted to the City of Folsom and El Dorado County on Tuesday, according to a joint media release from the development groups.

UPDATE: See the submitted proposal documents on the city of Folsom’s website by clicking here

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The proposed project continues a tradition of collaboration between the two organizations that started with the development of the world-renowned UC Davis MIND Institute in 1998. 

The envisioned “Community for Health and Independence” will be a national model community focused on helping older adults and people with disabilities age in place and lead longer, healthier lives. The concept is based on research from and conceived in collaboration with UC Davis Health, which will help guide the planning and design of the community in accordance with its “Planning Healthy Aging Communities” findings. 

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“We know the key to healthy aging for people starts in their homes,” said UC Davis Health CEO David Lubarsky. “We believe a reimagined community that leverages technology for human-made spaces where people live, recreate and work will promote better management of chronic disease and increase independence for valuable members of this population.”

A 200-acre UC Davis teaching, research and health complex is planned as the centerpiece of the community. As envisioned (and based on community needs), it may include such features as a world-class center for the study of healthy aging, and allow for collaborations with other educational and health institutions, community educational gatherings, and on-site healthcare facilities. 

“The California Department of Aging is predicting the population of people over 60 in our region will more than double from 2010 figures by 2030, and evidence is showing that wave is already cresting,” said Bill Romanelli, spokesperson for AKT. “The vast majority of older adults want to age in place – they want to remain in their homes, near family and caregivers. We need to plan for that now, or risk failing the fastest growing segment of our population.”

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Romanelli added that (to the group’s knowledge), this is the only project of its kind where a major university, health care system, and developer are working together on a master-planned community with health in mind from the start. 

The proposed integrated master plan community also includes multi-generational housing, meant to attract residents and families of all ages and income levels, which will be complemented by technology-enabled homes for seniors and people with disabilities, all co-located in a community designed for mobility and independent living. Technology-enabled homes are designed to care for people’s needs, allowing older adults and people with disabilities to live longer, healthier and safer lives in their own homes.

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The community would also include open spaces, gathering spaces, trails, parks, schools, and landscape corridors, along with amenities to facilitate mobility and socializing, as well as enabling easy access to healthcare and other vital services. 

An initial project application is intended to inform both the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors and the Folsom City Council of the significant need for this kind of community, and begin the process to evaluate the merits of the project.  Notably, the land identified for the proposed project poses no significant risks from wildfires, flooding or earthquakes, and does not encroach on prime farmland in the region. 

The proposed land use plan consists of the utilization of 1400 acres and 4,000 allotted housing units south of Folsom and another 1400 acres and 4,000 housing units in El Dorado County, as well as commercial and industrial research sites, and the 200-acre UC Davis teaching, research and health complex.  

With the direction of the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors and the Folsom City Council, the project plans to commence the necessary studies and analysis, consistent with the California Environmental Quality Act, to address issues such as traffic, water, infrastructure and environmental protections, among others. The proposed acreage and housing units would be in addition to those already including in the Folsom Ranch plans. Developers submitted the proposed plans Tuesday morning. Romanelli explained the additional land and housing needs for the property south of the Folsom City limits are why the plans are now being submitted.

“This would be in addition to Folsom Ranch, which is why all that’s being asked of the City and County right now is to study the proposal, and begin what we expect will be a multi-year process of studies (including CEQA), public hearings, community workshops and so on before the project could ever be up for approval,” Romanelli explained . “Projects like this are complex and appropriate time will be taken for the studies and public discussion it requires, understanding that as the local population grows larger, and older, the need for and importance of a project like this is going to grow right along with it.”

UPDATE: See the submitted proposal documents on the city of Folsom’s website by clicking here

Source: Joint Press Release by UC Davis/AKT Development.

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Author: News Release