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Hercules Waterfront Master Plan

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The Waterfront Now Initiative

Waterfront District Master Plan (15 MB PDF) 

The Hercules Waterfront Master Plan Initiative allows the Waterfront’s master developer, Hercules Bayfront, LLC, to develop the final stages of the Waterfront. The 2008 Initiative facilitates completion of the Hercules Waterfront as a transit-oriented neighborhood mixed-use project by:
  • Amending the General Plan Diagrams, Land Use Element, Open Space/Conservation Element, Growth Management Element and Hazardous Waste Management Element and the Zoning Ordinance to:
    1. designate the Hercules Point as Open Space and allow both active and passive uses subject to any needed remediation;
    2. allow mixed use neighborhood and residential uses within the Historic Town Center planning area;
    3. add the Administration Building of the former Hercules Powder Company to the buildings to be retained for public or private use or access;
    4. add marina use, including boat slips and docks, to the permissible uses for submerged and tidal land to the north and south of Hercules Point and permit inclusion of public rest room facilities within areas designated as Waterfront Commercial (WC);
    5. increase allowable residential density to 40 units per acre and permissible building height to no more than eight stories within areas designated as Planned Commercial-Residential (PC-R); and
    6. rezone property within various designated sub-districts, including bringing the Civic Arts building property and the Masonic building property within the Central Hercules Plan area.
  • Amending the 2001 Waterfront District Master Plan by establishing a form-based code to regulate and provide detailed development and design standards for the currently undeveloped portions of the Historic Town Center, Transit Village, and Hercules Point sub-districts. (The 2001 Waterfront Master Plan will continue to apply to other existing portions of the Waterfront Master Plan Area.)

How the Waterfront Master Plan Initiative Came to Be

On June 4, 2008, the City Clerk posted notice of Hercules citizens' intention to circulate a petition requiring the Hercules Waterfront Master Plan Initiative to be submitted to the City Council for consideration. After less than three weeks of circulation, completed petitions containing 3,666 unverified signatures were delivered to the City Clerk and the County Elections Department for verification. On July 14, 2008, the Contra Costa County Elections Department certified that the petition qualified pursuant to Elections Code Sections 9115, 9211, and 9214. Since the number of valid signatures substantially exceeded the required 15% threshold of all registered Hercules voters, the City Council on July 22, 2008, adopted the Initiative as an ordinance (effective 30 days thereafter on August 22, 2008).

The Council also approved a development agreement between the City of Hercules and Hercules Bayfront LLC. Specific projects allowed by the development agreement will undergo review pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act and pursuant to the City’s governing ordinances.

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