East River Properties starting to look like homes | SierraSun.com

East River Properties starting to look like homes

Scott Hess

East River Properties, a project approved last year by the Town of Truckee, is beginning to look like more than a dirt lot. Although only four of the 12 lots are up for sale, and only one of the four is being developed, the area is getting cleaned up and ready for residents.

“It’s the beginnings of change for that area,” said Truckee River Homes realtor Nick Pullen, who is selling the properties. “In the master plan, the area was re-zoned to high density residential (instead of commercial).”

According to Pullen and Joe McGinity, the owner and developer of the properties, after the area was rezoned, the town waited until the commercial property leases were up and then reserved the area for residential property. The town didn’t want to keep the commercial buildings, Pullen and McGinity said, because they thought the banks of the Truckee River could be better appreciated by residents.

“It’s been a long process,” McGinity said. He started the project more than two years ago with his wife, Shelley, and it is just beginning to bear fruit. “People are finally moving out of the area and it’s getting cleaned up,” he said.

The people he spoke of were industrial business owners, who used the area as a storage area, according to Truckee Community Development Director Tony Lashbrook.

“Last year … we did a River Street clean-up,” Lashbrook said. “We hauled one hell of a lot of cars and junk out of River Street. It’s all a part of cleaning up the river, making it a positive element of the community, instead of the dumping ground that it was.”

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The area is on East River Street, right along the bank of the Truckee River near Historic Downtown and across the street from the railroad tracks. The properties stretch from the road to the river, and in some cases, across the river.

McGinity said he tried to do as much as he could to improve the look of the area and comply with the town philosophies. He said he has designated space on the property for view corridors (which run between groups of four lots) and has written language into the architectural guidelines to have the garages face away from the street.

“The town has been very supportive,” McGinity said. He said he has worked with Truckee during the whole process.

Lashbrook said the town is happy with the project and is “the first project in the river corridor under the Downtown Specific Plan.”

Also, McGinity donated some parts of the two eastern-most lots to the Legacy Trail, he has minimized the number of trees taken out and he is working with the town and Union Pacific Railroad to get a beautification lease to improve the area next to the tracks.

As far as the price of the lots go, Pullen said that they will range from $220,000 to $245,000. Two lots are already sold, and McGinity said that there has been interest in the others.

“I’m very excited to see people interested,” he said. “That section of the river is very enjoyable.”