Another company pitches Port of Crescent City over its RV parks, says plan includes long-term residents | Wild Rivers Outpost


Jessica Cejnar Andrews / Today at 12:22 p.m. / Local Government

Another company offers Port of Crescent City on its RV parks, says plan includes long-term residents


Previously:

• ‘This is not my port, not my vision’; Developer to Meet with Crescent City Harbor Commissioners and RV Park Residents

• Difficult “resetting” of Crescent City Harbour: will aging infrastructure and past “bad leases” thwart major port projects?

• RV park residents skeptical of Harbour’s ‘transition plan’, with one insisting a third-party arbitrator represent his interests

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Another company, linked to Crescent City, offered the port district an alternative to Alex Lemus and Renewable Energy Capital for the redevelopment of its two RV parks.

Kay Fry, project manager for On-site developmenta Los Angeles-area construction company, told Crescent City Harbor Commissioners on Tuesday it was familiar with Bayside RV Park — his grandmother managed the park for its former owners and Fry played there as a child.

Speaking longer than the three minutes allotted for public comment thanks to time donated by RV park tenants, Fry noted that the Harbor District has been negotiating with Lemus since responding to a request for proposals to redevelop the port about a year ago. . She said she and her father, on the spot

The development’s founder, Jim Fry, has drawn up a plan that includes the parks’ long-term tenants.

“We believe REC has unrealistic expectations for tourism in this specific area, particularly during the winter months,” Kay Fry told the commissioners. “These tenants are what keep the lights on. An RV park business plan should include them, and we’d like to share an idea with the board so we can give you a fresh perspective.

Fry approached harbor commissioners about a month after Lemus held a question-and-answer session with residents, many of whom fear they will be told to leave to make way for the redevelopment of Bayside and Redwood RV parks Harbor Village.

Lemus, which contributed to the production of the port’s photovoltaic solar system, unveiled its redevelopment project plan in August 2021. In addition to upgrading Bayside’s landscaping and infrastructure, his project includes the purchase of trailers and Airstream cabins for short-term overnight stays.

He also proposes placing electric vehicle charging stations in the old Spotty’s Car Wash near the Fisherman’s Restaurant, installing solar panels on the old car wash building and building a cooperative for local fishermen to sell. their catch to local businesses.

Lemus also promised to create individual transition plans for each long-term resident of the RV park – there were 86 as of February 14 – saying he would not sign a lease for the parks or start not build until those plans are finalized.

“I’m not here to make anyone homeless – I don’t want that on my resume,” Lemus told the Wild Rivers Outpost and KFUG Community News last month. “I think we need to sit down (and ask the locals): ‘Do you want to live here during the redevelopment? Do you want to stay? Because I’m not here to expel anyone.

Fry has already spoken to residents of the RV park. She said she and her father wanted to get an idea of ​​what they were comfortable with and whether they wanted to stay or go.

“What is their interest in all this? That’s how we got our foot in the door and worked to get some space in the meeting,” Fry told the Outpost Wednesday. “We really needed donations of time to make this possible and the tenants were incredibly supportive and it warmed our hearts.”

Fry said his father started his business building custom homes and worked his way up to running multimillion-dollar hotel bookings. One of On-Site Development’s most recent projects is the restoration of a $22 million hotel in Nashville.

Fry said she and her dad also like to “follow the market” and see a growing interest in RVs and a need for places to park them. One of the consultants she and her father work with attended a convention in Las Vegas around the time the Harbor District sent out its request for redevelopment proposals.

“They were blown away by the absolute need for RV parks and RV park updates to accommodate the RVs being made, which are much larger with larger pop-outs” , she said. “When we saw this trend happening, we thought we’d look into it. When we saw the bidding for Bayside and Redwood Harbor Village, of course, it piqued our interest more than a point. from an emotional point of view.

Fry said she and her father would have responded to the Harbor District tender had it not been for another project that had come up, the construction of an RV park of $2.4 million to Cave Junction. Although the Cave Junction project isn’t complete, Fry said she’s interested in seeing where the Harbor District is at with its redevelopment plan.

While she agrees with Lemus to start with RV parks when it comes to making the port more attractive to tourists, Fry said it was unrealistic to rely on these visitors all year round. She said the onsite development was not ready to say what its vision for the parks was, but one possibility was to modify the layout of Bayside to accommodate both tenants and long-term tenants.

On-site development officials are also hoping to find a workaround to a California Coastal Commission rule against people living in beachfront RV parks for more than 30 days, Fry said.

“We’ve done our research and it looks like there’s a way around this which usually results in a new lease every 30 days,” she said. “It is not possible to ask people to be kicked out of their homes for a few days and come back. We are working on it too. »

Fry said the on-site development has developed a business plan, which includes market research for the Crescent City-Del Norte County area. He also plans to submit plans and sketches “to give the curators an idea of ​​what it might look like in real life.”

On Tuesday, Fry told harbor commissioners they had given the REC “the exclusive right to negotiate”. The commission’s decision to award the tender to REC has led to a lack of competition so far, she said.

“We all know that negotiations cannot go on forever,” she said. “I don’t know what delayed the negotiations, but obviously the board was hesitant. Maybe you have no other options. I’m here to give you another option.

Although Lemus has leased overflow land owned by Redwood Harbor Village and operates it as an RV park, it has not yet negotiated a lease for the two RV parks with the port, said Tuesday. Rick Shepherd, Chairman of the Crescent City Harbor District Council.

In response to former supervisor Roger Gitlin, who asked the Port District to have a discussion of RV park plans on every agenda, Shepherd said he and his colleagues are still negotiating with Lemus.

“Then we’ll have open discussions on a meeting-to-meeting basis on the relocation part and a lot of different things,” Shepherd said. “But nothing can move forward until we have a lease and we don’t have one at the moment.”

In response to Fry’s impromptu presentation, Shepherd said that since it was not on the Harbor District’s agenda for Tuesday, he and his colleagues could not comment on his proposal. He asked Fry to present at the next district meeting on April 5.


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