City plans for massive annexation, Saugus library and arts center

Signage marking new homes stands on land off Plum Canyon Road that the city hopes to annex and develop into a library and arts center. Feb. 12, 2018. Andrew Clark/The Signal
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A library and arts center are at the epicenter of annexation plans for Plum Canyon, Sand Canyon and Skyline Ranch that would increase the size of the city by nearly five square miles, city officials said Monday.

City spokeswoman Carrie Lujan said the city will reach out to residents in unincorporated portions of Plum Canyon, which includes most homes east of Golden Valley and Plum Canyon roads, to gauge whether they want to become part of Santa Clarita.

“This week, a survey will go out to residents in the area to assess their interest in being annexed into the city,” Lujan said. “We are anticipating a positive response.”

The annexation would include existing homes branching off Golden Valley Road between Dorothy Street and Plum Canyon Road, along with all existing home tracts along Plum Canyon east of Golden Valley Road, according to a city map sent to The Signal. That portion is 1,037 acres.

The Saugus Library and Arts Center will be located on the northeast corner of La Madrid Drive and Plum Canyon Road on a plot of land that is more than 12 acres and extends to Skyline Ranch Road, the roadway that will eventually connect Plum Canyon Road to Sierra Highway. The Skyline Ranch portion of the annexation is 1,925 acres.

A 155-acre portion of the annexation would be for northern Sand Canyon homes along Vista Point Lane. That portion of the annexation is not connected to the Plum Canyon or Skyline Ranch areas.

City data estimates all three areas of annexation would add 11,874 residents to the city’s population once built-out. The largest population would be in Skyline Ranch—3,660 residents in 1,220 units.

Lujan said the proposed annexation is scheduled to be heard by the Planning Commission March 20 and then the City Council April 24. The city would then apply with county regional planners to have the annexation finalized by year’s end.

The city was negotiating the purchase of the property and would soon release a request for proposals for architects to design the new center, Lujan said.

“This is an exciting time for our Santa Clarita Public Library as this fourth branch will bring ease of access and learning opportunities to the Saugus community. Focusing not just on traditional library programs…this new center will also bring arts and cultural experiences to the area,” she said.

The city conducted a community Needs Assessment Survey in 2016 to garner the needs of the Saugus community, giving staff a better idea of what citizens needed and wanted.

Over 1,500 residents responded to the survey and 300 participated in community meetings.

Residents responded saying they would like the library to be conveniently located and include facilities for recreation, community meetings, events, visual and performing art, education, technology and school support, according to the city’s library website.

Respondents said the most important features are comfortable seating, a children’s library, a café, a quiet study area, more books, free Wi-Fi, a family events center and a place for fitness and exercise.

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