Town council airs concerns with Clear Capital move
TRUCKEE, Calif. — With the intent of staying in Truckee, Clear Capital wants to build new headquarters on land that ironically lies just outside the town’s border.
The national provider of real estate analytics and valuations plans to lease an approximately 6-acre parcel from the Truckee Tahoe Airport District that is fronted by Soaring and Aviation ways, which falls within unincorporated Nevada County.
On it, Clear Capital wants to construct an 80,000-square-foot campus and 500-plus-space parking lot, due to the parcel’s good site access, easy extension of nearby utilities and treeless topography, among other reasons.
The town of Truckee, however, has its concerns.
“I am concerned with the scale of the project and with the secondary uses of a building of that magnitude,” council member Joan deRyk Jones said at Tuesday’s town council meeting. “The last thing I think we want as a community is to inadvertently, in accommodating what works well for Clear Capital, build Walmart.”
She touched on one of several concerns identified by town staff; others include the property not being in the town’s sphere of influence; traffic impacts to the town along with Placer County and Caltrans; and Truckee receiving no direct tax revenue from the project.
“We need to be part of the process, but as observers and protecting what’s ours and what the town’s goals are,” said Mayor Carolyn Wallace Dee.
Other government agencies affected by this project include Placer County, with the intersection of Truckee Airport Road and Highway 267; Nevada County; and the airport district, which would serve as property manager under the lease agreement.
“I can almost feel the frustration of how many people that are involved in this once process,” said council member Mark Brown. “… But I applaud you for actually sitting down and saying, ‘Let’s go forward with it.’”
With about 330 employees working out of a 40,000-square-foot campus at the Pioneer Commerce Center, Clear Capital has outgrown the location. Yet, there are limited sites in Truckee that can accommodate one of the region’s largest private employers.
“To me it doesn’t matter who’s land it’s on,” said council member Alicia Barr. “It’s great we’re trying to keep the jobs in the area, and I think that’s the underlining goal here.”
Clear Capital reportedly contributes about $25 million annually to the local economy through payroll and local spending.
On Tuesday, council unanimously approved a resolution for staff to work with all parties to pursue a campus at Soaring and Aviation ways — while addressing town concerns.
An ideal timeline by Clear Capital has office construction starting in July 2014, with occupation by November 2015.
The final lease still requires airport board approval.
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