VICTORVILLE – Victorville, announced Monday, it is one step closer to forming the first Community Revitalization Investment Authority (CRIA) in California. The CRIA – an economic and affordable housing tool will be used to finance the revitalization of Old Town Victorville.
“Our plans to revitalize Old Town were derailed in 2012, when the state axed its funding program for local redevelopment,” said Victorville Mayor Debra Jones. “Without the necessary funds, the struggle to find the most prudent way to invest in this once-thriving, historical section of our city was ever present. Fortunately, the state authorized the CRIA as a new investment mechanism that can help us restore vitality to Old Town.”
Although laws to establish a CRIA were implemented in 2015, only one other city – Riverside currently has a CRIA pending.
Once Victorville’s CRIA is fully implemented, the city will have access to revenue generated within the Old Town Specific Plan Area to fund revitalization activities. CRIA revenue is not raised through a new tax. Instead, it comes from rising property values within the revitalization zone.
For example, as developers and businesses improve and build on properties in Old Town, those properties benefit from higher appraised values, which in turn triggers increased property tax assessments collected by the county. The CRIA allows the extra revenue generated to be allocated directly for use within the Old Town Revitalization Zone.
To further incentivize investment, the city council took action, in June 2022, to waive development impact fees for all development in the Old Town CRIA Area.
A draft Old Town Community Revitalization Investment Area Plan, released last week, outlines the city’s redevelopment objectives that include transforming Old Town into a pedestrian-friendly, unique, vibrant, mixed-use focal point for the region.
To meet these objectives, revitalization activities include:
- infrastructure improvements;
- low- and moderate-income housing development;
- real property acquisition;
- loans or grants to owners and tenants to improve, rehabilitate, and retrofit buildings;
- and business assistance.
The CRIA Board, comprised of three city council members and two community members, will be hosting four public meetings to discuss the CRIA Plan, answer questions, and take comments from the public.
The first public meeting is planned for Dec. 5 at 5 p.m. within Conference Room D of Victorville City Hall, located at 14343 Civic Dr. Additional meetings are planned for Feb. 6, March 20, and May 15.
Once the plan is approved, the CRIA will be the first in California.
To view the draft Old Town Community Revitalization Investment Area Plan click here.