Supervisors To Hear Appeal On Church Of The Woods’ Expansion Project Tuesday

The San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors next week is scheduled to consider whether it will second guess the county planning commission with regard to the go-ahead that panel in January gave to the Church of the Woods’ request to construct three buildings totaling just under 70,000 square feet on its property in Rimforest.
On Tuesday, the board of supervisors is to conduct a public hearing to consider an appeal by the Save Our Forest Association, Inc., the Sierra Club and the San Bernardino Valley Audubon Society asking that the board rescind the San Bernardino County Planning Commission’s January 23, 2020 5-to-0 vote approving a conditional use permit for a religious facility consisting of a 27,364-square foot, two-story youth center/gymatorium, recreational facilities, a 41,037-square foot, two-story assembly building with a maximum seating capacity of 600, and a 1,500-square foot, two-story maintenance/caretaker unit in two phases on a 13.6-acre portion of the church’s 27.12-acre site.
At the January 23 planning commission meeting, county planning staff made a recommendation for approval of the project. At the hearing, 37 members of the public expressed their concerns about the project and asked that it be denied, while 26 members of the public expressed support for the project and asked that it be approved.
The appellants contend the environmental impact report for the project does not comply with the California Environmental Quality Act, does not adequately describe the project, and failed to adequately evaluate and mitigate the project’s impacts on biological resources, traffic, evacuation routes, drainage and water quality, geology and soils, aesthetics, land use, and cumulative impacts.
The county’s land use services division has recommended that the board of supervisors deny the appeal and allow the project to proceed. According to county staff, the project description in the environmental impact report adequately and accurately characterizes the project. Further, according to staff, the environmental impact report calls for the implementation of mitigation measures, such that the project’s impacts would be reduced to below levels of significance with the exception of cumulatively considerable impacts to special-status species wildlife habitat, construction noise, and impacts to intersections that are under the control of the California Department of Transportation that are outside of the county’s jurisdictional authority to assure mitigation.

Leave a Reply