Friday, September 30, 2016

Thank you for attending & here is additional background

Thanks to our community members who took the time to attend our special Council meeting on Wednesday night, Sept. 28, on the Civic Center Visioning Study. What a great meeting!

Here is a summary of the overview I presented as background prior to the consultants' reports:

At a facilitated goal-setting workshop on January 10, 2015, the Town Council adopted as part of its top 5 major priorities the pursuit of a Civic Center relocation and feasibility/economic study and the pursuit of a hotel on the Town Green. On June 17, 2015, the Town Council approved its 2-year budget for Fiscal Years 2015-17, and approved funding for the Civic Center Visioning Study.

As many community members are aware, since the Town Green and downtown were initially established in 2001, it was always the Town's intent to complete the Town Green by building along the northern edge.  The Town Council, in adopting this goal and funding for the study, expressed that since the downtown has had time to mature, coupled with the improving economy, it is a good time to engage the residents of Windsor to determine what kind of a redesign of this area would meet our future needs and goals for the downtown.   This study is implementing that objective.  

The firm of Wallace Roberts and Todd, WRT, have conducted the study on potential alternative uses of the existing Windsor Civic Center and its immediate vicinity and will present their findings.  

Furthermore, fortunately, the Town had the unique opportunity timing-wise to take advantage of the work of the firm Urban 3, out of Asheville, North Carolina, who is here performing its insightful financial analysis of land use development patterns in close proximity to the various SMART stations along the Highway 101 corridor. Urban 3 has had work taking place in Petaluma and Santa Rosa this week. Urban 3 is working in partnership with local non-profit Urban Community Partnership to support economically sustainable growth in Sonoma County.

As background to the Civic Center Study, the Town Council in 2012 adopted the Downtown Station Area Plan which sought to establish a cohesive transit oriented community in the downtown. One of the opportunities identified in the Station Area Plan was the exploration of intensification or redevelopment of the existing Civic Center site with multi-use development that would define the Town Green’s northern edge with active uses. The Civic Center site and Library were identified as an opportunity site in the Station Area Plan

As further background, in 2006, the Sonoma County Library conducted a Master Facilities study which identified that the Windsor Regional Library was only one-third of the size it ideally needed to be for the service area it covers, which includes the greater Windsor communityLarkfield and Wikiup areas. An updated Library facilities master plan is underway by the Sonoma Library Joint Powers AuthorityThe Windsor Regional Library building is owned by the Town of Windsor, and the Sonoma Library Joint Powers Authority leases the building at no cost, and provides for its operations and staffing.

Windsor’s 2012 Station Area plan also included a guiding principle of promoting the establishment of at least one hotel downtown.Furthermore, the Town’s 2008 Economic Development Strategic Plan called for a feasibility study on the development of a boutique hotel. Such a feasibility study was completed in 2014 with results reported to the Planning Commission and Council for a 40-room boutique hotel, with ground-floor restaurant and meeting space. 

In terms of one of the civic uses currently downtown, the Huerta Gym, the April 2016 approved Administrative Draft of the Parks and Recreation Master Plan calls for a Multi-Generational Community Center at Keiser Park to maximize efficiencies and to replace the Huerta Gym and its program activities with active use and gym space, as well as facilities specifically meant for preschool use.

With respect to the three Civic Center alternatives presented by WRT this evening, staff sought direction from Council on a preferred alternative to include as a component of the ongoing General Plan update. 

The Town Council directed staff to pursue Alternative #2 which places commercial development on the northerly edge of the Town Green, builds a new larger Library, replaces the Town Hall with a new multi-level structure, adds surface level shared parking, creates a new multi-purpose events center on the Green, and creates housing at Windsor Road and Old Redwood Highway.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Urban3 presentation now available

At last night's Council meeting, North Carolina based firm Urban3 presented its 3D economic modeling of the Sonoma County SMART corridor and Windsor's highest tax generating land use areas. The presentation was not in the agenda packet prior to the meeting. The presentation is now available on our website at:

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

PowerPoint for Sept 28 uploaded!

The PowerPoint presentation for the Town Council's special meeting on the Civic Center Visioning Study has been uploaded and may be accessed here:

The file size is very large: 46MB

Saturday, September 24, 2016

You are invited! Special Civic Center Visioning Study Meeting - Sept. 28 @ 5:30pm

The Town of Windsor will present a special Town Council meeting on Wednesday, September 28th at 5:30pm in the Council Chambers to review the Civic Center Visioning Study. A component of the study will be an economic review by Urban 3, which is part of a larger effort up and down the SMART rail corridor. Read the press release by Urban Community Partnership for more information:


Urban Community Partnership is releasing new, focused downtown case studies at three public meetings on Sept. 26, 27 and 28

Santa Rosa, CA. New case studies of potential downtown building projects in Santa Rosa and Windsor will be released to the public next week to illustrate the fiscal and environmental benefits of city-centered development near transit.   

“We want to transform the way we build in our downtown cores to provide value to the community and housing for all in Sonoma County,” said Robin Stephani, Vice President of Pre-Construction for Wright Contracting. “We have reached a pivot point and need to re-invent our path of development to foster smart, healthy, and cost effective growth for the next generation.”

Urban Community Partnership will host three public meetings during the last week of September to present the local case studies to elected officials, city staff and the public.  
  • Monday, September 26, nationally recognized expert on resilient municipal finance Joe Minicozzi of Urban 3, from Asheville, North Carolina, will discuss alternative options for development of a prominent downtown Santa Rosa case study site. Socializing will begin at 5:30 at the Museum on the Square Building, 520 3rd Street, Santa Rosa on the second floor. The presentation will begin at6:00.
  • Tuesday, September 27, Minicozzi will highlight the essentials of financially resilient development at a public presentation at the Petaluma Woman’s Club,518 B Street, Petaluma at 5:45.
  • Wednesday, September 28, Minicozzi, Urban Community Partnership, and WRT will talk to a special meeting of the Windsor Town Council about the Windsor Civic Center. The meeting will start at 5:30 at the Windsor Town Hall.

“Our overall goal is to help create financially resilient communities which promote a better quality of life for a larger portion of our community while being environmentally responsible” said Stephani.

The initial pilot which focused on Santa Rosa was presented in January 2016 during a series of well attended meetings and workshops.  The case studies are focused on long term return on investment and will explore highest and best uses, along with moderate and low potency development options. UCP will also discuss how development choices and policies affect our sustainability targets, social equity, educational attainment, livability and health outcomes.

Urban Community Partnership (UCP) is a cross-disciplinary partnership that works with community members to create economically strong, environmentally healthy towns for all of us. We study the opportunities for development to contribute financially, socially, and environmentally to our future.  

Supporters of this effort are the Town of Windsor, City of Santa Rosa, SCTA & RCPA, Greenbelt Alliance, NorBAR, SE Greenway, Urban Chat Petaluma, Wright Contracting, Rick Theis, Cornerstone, ArchiLOGIX, Fritz Architecture-Urbanism, and other individuals who agree that appropriate development is an opportunity to make our towns stronger, healthier, and more sustainable for everyone.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Appointment of new Police Chief

Click to read the press release regarding the appointment of our new Police Chief Carlos Basurto:

Chief Chris Spallino will be retiring following six years of distinguished service as Windsor's Police Chief.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Interested in our streets and roads, traffic, parking and getting around town???

Attend our meeting on Thursday, September 22 at 5:30pm at Town Hall where we will talk all things roads at special joint meeting on the Draft Transportation and Mobility Element.

Drive, bike or walk to the meeting - let's discuss how we get around!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Have you moved recently? Do you need to register to vote or re-register to vote?

The Presidential Election as well as the Town’s regular General Municipal Election is coming up on Tuesday, November 8, 2016.

If you have recently turned age 18, moved, or changed your name, you will need to register or re-register to vote. To register to vote in time for this election, visit by no later than 5:00 p.m. on Monday, October 24, 2016 to register.

Additional resources regarding the election can be found by contacting the Sonoma County Registrar of Voters by telephone at (707) 565-6800 or by email at

Every vote counts!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

We Will Always Remember 9/11

Thank you Windsor Fire Protection District for organizing the annual September 11 Remembrance Event on Sunday at Station No. 2. Thank you also to Windsor's KIN Restaurant for providing the hearty breakfast. This year, a piece of structural steel from one of the World Trade Center towers was mounted for permanent display at the station. A special local family who lost a loved one in the attacks was honored at the event. May we never forget the events of that day and may we always continue to honor our public safety first responders.

Please join us at upcoming Council meetings

Three Council meetings are coming up in the month of September:

  • Wednesday, September 21 at 6pm: Regular Town Council meeting
  • Thursday, September 22 at 5:30pm: Special Joint Meeting of the Council and Planning Commission regarding the General Plan update – Transportation and Mobility Element
  • Wednesday, September 28 at 5:30pm: Special Council meeting regarding the Civic Center Visioning Study and Urban 3 economic analysis

The agendas will be posted on the following webpage when available:

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Recycle your household batteries!

The Town of Windsor accepts used household batteries. Drop off locations are Windsor Town Hall, 9291 Old Redwood Highway, (707) 838-1000 or Windsor Refuse and Recycling, 3400 Standish Avenue, Santa Rosa, (707) 586-5545. Windsor residents can pick up special yellow battery collection bags to be placed on top of the blue recycle cart at Town Hall, Windsor Public Works Department, 8400 Windsor Road or Windsor Refuse and Recycling. For further information, please contact Kristina Owens, Administrative Operations Manager, Administrative Services Department, (707) 838-5355 or