Planning for Capital Improvements at Tahoe Donner



How are Capital Improvements paid for?

Tahoe Donner was created over 40 years ago. Over time, infrastructure has aged and member preferences have changed, reflecting the demographics of a younger and more family-oriented membership. To counter the deterioration of aging infrastructure and reflect the values expressed in our Strategic Plan, Tahoe Donner created the Development Fund for capital improvements. Instead of funding capital improvements through special assessments, Tahoe Donner sets aside $250 of each member’s annual assessment in the Development Fund, which avoids financial surprises for members and provides sustainable financial support for capital improvements.

How is the Development Fund spent?

Ideas for improvement come from many sources.

  • Members who use Tahoe Donner amenities provide feedback about deficiencies they see, such as the deterioration of the older locker rooms at Trout Creek.
  • Staff documents “pinch-points,” such as the lack of sufficient parking during peak use periods.
  • Members experience attractions at other locations and express their desire to see them at Tahoe Donner.
  • Repair costs grow so large that a total replacement is more prudent. An example of this would be the Alder Creek Adventure Center replacing the Cross Country/Equestrian Center.
  • Regulatory or technology changes provide an opportunity for cost savings such as the addition of solar power.
  • All of these ideas are evaluated and balanced against the funds available in the Development Fund. Those ideas that provide the greatest benefit for members are prioritized in a list and presented to the board by staff and the member-volunteer General Plan Committee (GPC). Over the last 10 years, more than $16.4 million of major improvements have been made to Tahoe Donner assets by this process.

Why create a new Capital Projects Spending Process?

Over the last three months, the GPC and staff, assisted by members with specific expertise in capital planning, documented a new Capital Projects Spending Process (CPSP). The starting point of this documentation was the work plans that Tahoe Donner has used successfully for years. The end point is a structured, informed and transparent process for taking capital projects from idea to completion. This ensures comprehensive evaluation during project development, accountability for the investment of time and finances, and ongoing transparency for members and other stakeholders.

What is the new CPSP?

The CPSP is a “stage-gate” business process where the necessary tasks are grouped into stages that must be completed in order to trigger the next gate of funds needed to proceed. The GPC, staff and board of directors uses this method to provide clarity and accountability for all stakeholders.

The CPSP has six stages, which are shown in the infographic below this article or you may download it here:

  1. Idea generation
  2. Project selection
  3. Conceptual design
  4. Final design
  5. Construction
  6. Post-project review

To reduce confusion, the CPSP also contains clear definitions of terms. When a member sees the word “estimate” or “quote” they will realize that the finalized and defined costs and schedules have not yet been determined. Those of us who have done home improvements know that the scope and costs of our projects change as we learn about challenges and opportunities. Only when we have the final design and scope in hand with hard quotations from vendors can we have a dependable budget of time and money.

What does the new CPSP do for me?

Tahoe Donner is currently redesigning its website. Included in the new website will be a way to easily track the progress of capital improvement projects. At the same time, other communications such as email, the Tahoe Donner News magazine, town hall meetings, and more will be used to inform members and other stakeholders.

In the meantime, the current website contains the Strategic Plan, the detailed Capital Projects Spending Process flowchart (at right), and soon the Land Management Plan will be added. All new projects will be evaluated to be consistent with these overarching visions.

The GPC is beginning the work on master plans for each amenity which will involve input and feedback from members. These will also provide guidance for project selection. For example, the Downhill Ski Area’s focus as “The Best Place to Begin” helped direct the installation of snowmaking to its Learning Center. Once the new master plans are completed, they will be available on the website.

Your participation in the capital projects spending and planning processes is essential in keeping Tahoe Donner the vibrant mountain community that we all love. If you’d like to volunteer to be involved on a GPC Task Force, please contact either Dwight Walker or Michael Sullivan at GPC@tahoedonner.com.

Download a PDF here.

More information on Capital Projects can be found here.

May 7, 2016


Truckee and Tahoe Donner Road Construction



The Town of Truckee has several projects scheduled on the streets in Tahoe Donner, as well as downtown Truckee which may impact travel through detours and travel time.

Tahoe Donner Trail (Class 1) Project

Work will resume on the trail in late May/early June. Much of Phase 2 of the project was completed prior to snowfall this last fall and this summer the trail will be completed with the bridge over Trout Creek and other trail amenities such as trash receptacles and pet waste stations. Be on the lookout for the Town to announce a ribbon cutting ceremony at some point in the summer.

Paving and Drainage Project

A pavement overlay is scheduled for the Northwoods Boulevard loop, Fjord Road and Alder Creek Road from Fjord Road to Hwy 89. Drainage improvements are also proposed at various locations on these streets as a part of the project prior to the pavement overlay. The work will most likely occur in late summer/early fall.

Slurry Seal Project

The Tahoe Donner streets that are scheduled to receive a slurry seal in late summer/early fall are highlighted in the map below. A more detailed schedule and notifications of the work will be provided by the Town during the project.

COV_2016_TahoeDonnerArea

For a construction map of the slurry projects for all of Truckee, click here.

The Town of Truckee also has a few larger construction projects that will not directly impact Tahoe Donner but will impact traffic in the downtown and SR 89 area:

Brickelltown Streetscape Project

Project will construct streetscape improvements from the McIver Roundabout to the limits of the recently completed Phase 1, including new sidewalks, landscaping, lighting, crosswalks, repaving Donner Pass Road, undergrounding of utilities, and parking improvements on the north and south side of Donner Pass Road. Construction has started and will include both day and night work. More information on the construction schedule may be found here: townoftruckee.com/departments/redevelopment/brickelltown-streetscape-project

West River Widening and Bike Lane Project

Project will reconstruct and widen West River Street from Riverside Drive to Placer County. Construction will likely start in June and will take 2-3 months to complete. Most work will be done at night.

State Route 89 Mousehole Pedestrian/Bicycle Tunnel Project

Work on this project to complete the paths leading to the tunnel, the transit shelter, and other miscellaneous items will start in May and will likely be complete in July. Work will mostly occur in the shoulder and traffic delays should be minimal. For more information on Town of Truckee projects visit: townoftruckee.com/departments/engineering/town-capitalimprovement-projects-cips-

Water Upgrades

In addition to Town of Truckee, TDPUD and Aspen Developers are currently planning to upgrade the following:

In the orange highlighted areas below on the map, and starting on May 9 and finishing around June 17th, open trenching and slip-lines will be underway at the Southwest corner of Trout Creek Recreation Center parking lot (consuming approximately 35 parking stalls with staging and trenching), with excavation extending down to the Ball Shack, with slip-line installation under the adjacent cart path, and excavation alongside portions of cart path below the pool and playground area, then slip-lining up into the Condos, located between Z’s Market and The Lodge.  These improvements will require above-ground temporary water supply, and a temporary water disconnect on specific dates, to be further scheduled and communicated with Pool Maintenance and Trout Creek Staff.

In the yellow highlighted areas below on the map, TDPUD and Aspen Developers will also open trenches along Northwoods Blvd, between Julian Avenue and the unpaved parking lot at far end of driving range (at Nature Loop parking). Click to download the map. This scope is anticipated to be completed around our July 2-3 concerts. Although construction equipment and materials will be present, TDPUD aims to maintain parking lot access and adjacent on-street parking needs for our events.

tdpud

May 4, 2016

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Tahoe Donner Purchases 640-Acre Crabtree Canyon



Tahoe Donner to Purchase and Preserve 640-Acre Crabtree Canyon

With approval from its board of directors, Tahoe Donner Association is working with the Truckee Donner Land Trust and their partners, The Nature Conservancy and The Northern Sierra Partnership, to move forward with the acquisition of a 640-acre parcel of land located in Carpenter Valley and adjacent to Tahoe Donner’s existing 6,700-plus acres and Euer Valley.

The southern-most portion of the property, which includes Crabtree Canyon, is a gateway between Euer Valley and Carpenter Valley and will be owned and managed by Tahoe Donner. This is phase one of a much larger open space effort by Truckee Donner Land Trust, The Nature Conservancy, and The Northern Sierra Partnership. Further protection will be ensured by a permanent conservation easement held by the Truckee Donner Land Trust. The larger surrounding Carpenter Valley property, which has remained in private hands since the mid-19th century, is expected to be part of a Truckee Donner Land Trust purchase in 2017.

Our association’s vision as a desirable mountain community includes providing attractive and well-maintained facilities and amenities while maintaining accessible and healthy natural surroundings. The acquisition of the Crabtree parcel will also protect Tahoe Donner’s borders from future development.

In addition to preserving, protecting and maintaining Crabtree Canyon, this land parcel will also create new recreational opportunities for Tahoe Donner residents.

“This purchase also expands services to our membership,” Miller said. “It will allow Tahoe Donner Cross Country Ski Area to reopen 16 percent of our Nordic ski terrain that had previously closed due to land use concerns,” Miller explained. Tahoe Donner will also be exploring future opportunities over this property for hiking, biking, and equestrian usage in accordance with its comprehensive trails master plan and land use master plan.

Working with the Truckee Donner Land Trust, Tahoe Donner’s General Plan Committee, management and staff were able to negotiate the Crabtree Canyon purchase for less than $800 per acre. The Land Trust originally purchased this parcel for $2.4 million; our purchase price was $500,000, which equates to under $80 per Tahoe Donner member. Also, the funding for this purchase will require no special assessment to existing Tahoe Donner homeowners. It is covered by the development fund portion of the association’s existing budget, which is comprised of a percentage of each homeowner’s annual assessment.

Non-motorized summer and winter activities will be encouraged on the new parcel of land and officials from the Truckee Donner Land Trust envision a loop trail around the valley, with plans to link Tahoe Donner Independence Lake Preserve via a new trail system. Additionally, with our own forestry department actively working to minimize the threat of wildfire, and with motorized recreational vehicles prohibited throughout the year, this purchase successfully protects additional resources and valuable open space, allowing us to further achieve our vision and guiding principles, which include environmental stewardship.

“This land acquisition helps us move forward in keeping with our guiding principles, which includes environmental stewardship,” said Robb Etnyre, Tahoe Donner’s general manager. “The majority of our members surveyed last summer identified protecting and investing in open space and trails as a top priority for the association.”

“Carpenter Valley is one of the most spectacular — and little known — valleys in the entire Northern Sierra. Preserving the pristine natural beauty of our surroundings and ensuring continued recreational access is of utmost importance to us,” said Perry Norris, executive director of the Truckee Donner Land Trust. “This is a critical open space that is of great value to our community, and we are pleased to work with Tahoe Donner Association to help us protect it.”

Norris added that this land deal will help the Truckee Donner Land Trust, The Nature Conservancy, and The Northern Sierra Partnership with a future land acquisition of the larger Carpenter Valley area in 2017. Once acquired, that property will be open to the public for the first time in over a century. An announcement will be made once this larger purchase is officially completed.

Future article on this open space acquisition will be published in the May issue of Tahoe Donner News.

See a larger version of this map.

More information:

About the Truckee Donner Land Trust

The Truckee Donner Land Trust preserves and protects scenic, historic and recreational lands with high natural resource values in the greater Truckee Donner region and manage recreational activities on these lands in a sustainable manner. Learn more at: www.tdlandtrust.org.

Media Contact:
Perry Norris
Truckee Donner Land Trust
Ph: 530-386-7605
perry@tdlandtrust.org

April 7, 2016


Our Communication Process

How do we communicate with Tahoe Donner members? How do homeowners give us their feedback? Take a look at this infographic.

communication-infographic

March 11, 2016


February 20 Town Hall Meeting Summary

We would like to thank everyone who participated in the Town Hall Meeting on Saturday afternoon at The Lodge Restaurant & Pub. Over 85 of your fellow members showed up to provide feedback regarding waterline safety and the boat ramp at the Beach Club Marina. If you would like to see the presentation from the meeting, including the feedback from the audience, click here. At the next Board of Director meeting on Feb. 27, discussion and review of the feedback from the town hall meeting and the results of the survey on the subject will occur.

Again, thank you all for providing feedback in our efforts to make our Beach Club Marina a more enjoyable and safe environment for our members.
See the results of this past summer’s Capital Improvement Survey  here.

February 22, 2016

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