The proposed Project includes Agricultural Preserve Diminishment No. 180001 to remove the subject property from the Rancho California Agricultural Preserve No. 1 and Plot Plan No. 180003 (PPT 180003) for construction of a Class V Winery on approximately 44 gross acres. The site is bounded by Meng Asbury Road and orchards to the north, residential parcels and Monte De Oro Road to the west, Frangipani Estate Winery to the east, and De Portola Road to the south; County of Riverside, State of California, and known as Assessor’s Parcel Number 941-180-032.
Agricultural Preserve Diminishment No. 180001
Remove approximately 42.63 acres that are not currently subject to a land conservation contract from Rancho California Agricultural Preserve No. 1.
Plot Plan No. 180003
Plot Plan No. 180003 (PPT 180003) proposes a Class V Winery to include tasting room, office, and production, special occasions facility, restaurant, production expansion, and a 10-room country inn, to be developed in five (5) phases. According to Ordinance No. 348 (Providing for Land Use Planning and Zoning Regulations and Related Functions of the County of Riverside), a Class V Winery is a winery with an established on-site vineyard located on a minimum gross parcel size of twenty (20) acres that is allowed with appurtenant and incidental commercial uses (with an approved Plot Plan).
Intent to Adopt a Mitigated Negative Declaration – Applicant: Koll Development c/o Greg Koll – Engineer / Representative: Ventura Engineering – Third Supervisorial District – Southwest Area Plan: Agriculture – Temecula Valley Wine Country Policy Area: Winery District – Rancho California Zoning Area: Wine Country - Winery Zone – Location: north of De Portola Road, east of Monte De Oro Road, south of Meng Asbury Road and west of Camino Arroyo Seco – APN 941-180-032 – REQUEST: Remove approximately 42.63 acres that are not currently subject to a land conservation contract from Rancho California Agricultural Preserve No. 1.
RECOMMENDED MOTION: That the Board of Supervisors:
- ADOPT the Mitigated Negative Declaration for the environmental analysis under CEQ No. 180004, based on the findings and conclusions provided in the initial study, attached hereto and incorporated herein, and the conclusion that the project will not have a significant effect on the environment with the incorporation of mitigation; and,
- ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. 2021-203 approving Agricultural Preserve Diminishment (APD) No. 180001 and the diminishment of a portion of Rancho California Agricultural Preserve No. 1, as shown on Map No. 180001D, based upon the findings and conclusions incorporated in this resolution and the CAPTAC report, both attached hereto and incorporated herein, and this staff report.
Agricultural Preserve Diminishment (APD) No. 180001 proposes to remove approximately 42.63 acres from the Rancho California Agricultural Preserve No. 1. The removal of these acres will leave approximately 38.34 acres within the Rancho California Agricultural Preserve No. 1. The project site is not subject to a land conservation contract, so no cancellation is necessary. The exterior boundaries of the land to be diminished from Agricultural Preserve No. 1 are shown in Attachment B (ag. preserve map) and described in Attachment C (legal description) of this report.
Rancho California Agricultural Preserve No 1, which included the project site, was established with the adoption of Map No. 13 on February 10, 1969.
Land Conservation Contract
A land conservation (“Williamson Act”) contract was executed in 1974 by the land owners at the time (Instrument No. 23734). However, subsequent land owners filed a Notice of Nonrenewal with the County of Riverside, which was recorded in 2006 (Instrument No. 2006-0121740). The Williamson Act contract expired on December 31, 2015, so the project site is no longer restricted or subject to any land conservation contract.
Alternative Land Use
The proposed alternative land use is a phased Class V Winery, including wine production, lab and storage, wine tasting, hillside wine cave, a 10-room Country Inn and porte-cochere with pool, snack bar and garden area, winery tours, a restaurant, a special occasion facility, and vineyards. The proposed Class V Winery use is not part of the proposed action and requires approval of a Plot Plan, pursuant to Riverside County Ordinance No. 348, Article XIVd, Section 14.92.B.4, which will be processed separately from this diminishment case.
Technical Advisory Committee
The Comprehensive Agricultural Preserve Technical Advisory Committee (“CAPTAC”) met on September 11, 2019 and evaluated APD No. 180001. The CAPTAC found the proposed diminishment “Acceptable,” as it is consistent with the Land Conservation Act of 1965 and, therefore, recommended that the Board of Supervisors grant the proposed diminishment.
General Plan and Zoning Consistency
The proposed diminishment is consistent with the Riverside County General Plan and the Southwest Area Plan because the project site is currently designated Agriculture: Agriculture (AG: AG) and no change to the land use designation is proposed. In addition, the project site is part of the Wine Country Community Plan and is within the Temecula Valley Wine Country Policy Area – Winery District, and the site is zoned WC-W Zone (Wine Country – Winery). Similarly, no change is proposed in the policy area or to the zoning classification. In fact, the project must be developed in compliance to and shall be consistent with the above land use designation, policy area, and zoning classification.
An Initial Study (“IS”) and a Mitigated Negative Declaration have been prepared for this project as well as the proposed alternative land use of a Class V winery for the site, in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”). The IS and Mitigated Negative Declaration represent the independent judgement of Riverside County. The Documents were circulated for public review per the State CEQA Guidelines Section 15105.
Impact on Residents and Businesses
The impacts of this project have been evaluated through the environmental review and public hearing process by planning staff.