The developer claims that the project is categorically exempt from environmental review by the City under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), and that the City may not require preparation of an initial study or an environmental impact report.
CEQA does exempt an infill development project from environmental review, but only where the project is fully consistent with the applicable general plan and zoning restrictions, is substantially surrounded by urban uses, and there is no evidence that the project would have impacts on air quality, traffic, water quality, noise, or habitat. Moreover, the exemption does not apply if there are unusual circumstances showing that the project would have significant impacts.
The Mallard Point project is inconsistent with the R-2 zoning; is substantially surrounded by non-urban uses (i.e., the lagoon); there is evidence that the project would have impacts on traffic, water quality, and noise; and there is evidence showing that because the site consists of bay mud and fill material, construction of the apartment house component will require heavy pile-driving that will generate significant noise and geotechnical impacts.
The Impacts of the Mallard Pointe Project
The Mallard Pointe Project would pose a threat to the quality of life and the environment for the inhabitants of Belvedere. Learn more about its potential impacts.