Use permit approved for new downtown development


REDDING, Calif. - An effort to makeover downtown Redding took a major step forward thanks to the city's Planning Commission, Friday.

The commission unanimously approved a 'use permit application' to knock down the parking structure at the corner of Tehama and California Streets and replace it with housing and retail spaces.

Here's a look at one of the architect's renderings for the project: K2 Inc. and the McConnell Foundation hope to use grant money to build this 4-story mixed-use building that will have 79 residential units consisting of a mix of affordable and market rate one and two bedroom units. The building would be 100,000 square feet and have 8,200 square feet of ground-floor retail space. It is a 1.5-acre project.

The planning commission's main concern was parking. They discussed options including spots across the street and where the old police station now sits.

K2's managing partner, Daniel Knott, spoke about the core of downtown's issues. He said one of the problems is that everyone who works and enjoys downtown leaves at night. This creates a dark, deserted feel that makes it easier for crime to happen.

"That type of vibrancy and that type of culture that people are begging for and that is working really well in other communities comes from housing and it comes from the people living above it and we all get to enjoy coming to it," Knott said.

The chairman of the Planning Commission, Bob Paget, said he thinks it will be good for downtown.

"I thought it looked very tasteful, very tasteful not like the Civic, you know, a concrete block or anything like that. So, now they have the resources to design things and I think it's going to be a good project."

The president of Shasta College spoke in support because he thinks his students will get great use out of the housing. The property is close to the school's downtown health science's building.

Before this can happen, the idea has to pass through the city council and another grant must be received by the project team. The project already has one grant and are applying for the same one again to add to the funds.