Frequently Asked Questions

Question: What will the project entail? Where will it be built?

Answer: California Northstate University (CNU), a privately funded medical and pharmacy school, located at 9700 West Taron Drive in Elk Grove, is proposing to construct an approximately 450,000 square foot, 250 bed teaching hospital (the “Hospital Project”) as part of a larger District Development Plan (DDP) it is proposing (collectively, the “Project”). The DDP lays out broad plans for a multi-phase, multi-year development of a university and medical district on property CNU owns at and near its existing campus.

The proposed first phase of the DDP consists of the Hospital Project, which would be built on a portion of the current Stonelake Landing Shopping Center (the “Shopping Center”) located at the southwest corner of Elk Grove Boulevard and Interstate 5. The Shopping Center is adjacent to CNU’s campus.

In early 2018, CNU purchased nine of the thirteen parcels that comprise the Shopping Center. CNU does not own the four parcels in the Shopping Center where Elk Grove Church of Christ, Oz Korean BBQ, Shell/Circle K, and Carl’s Jr./Green Burrito are located. View a complete Project description and associated plans and graphics.

Question: Has the City approved the DDP and the Hospital Project?
Answer: The DDP and the Hospital Project have not been approved by the City. On December 19, 2018, CNU submitted an application for City review of the Project, but no City approvals have been granted.
Question: What is the public process for commenting on the Project?
Answer: The City review process, including environmental review, will take approximately 12 to 18 months until the Project is brought to the appropriate approving authority for a decision. There will be multiple opportunities for public input and comment throughout the project review period. Through its review process, the City will require CNU to conduct public outreach to affected neighborhoods.

Question: Will the City be hosting public outreach meetings for the Project?

Answer: The City does not anticipate hosting its own outreach meetings for the Project as it is not a City developed project. Outreach meetings are the responsibility of CNU as the applicant. City hosted meetings will focus on public hearings associated with the review of the Project as it progresses through the standard Planning review process. Public hearing or agenda notices will be published in advance of these meetings.

District One City Council Member, Darren Suen, will host an Information Session about the CNU Hospital Project on Friday, February 22, 2019. Details 
Question: What City and other governmental approvals are required?
Answer: CNU has applied to the City of Elk Grove for approval of the District Development Plan, design approval of the Hospital Project, and for Conditional Use Permits (CUP) to allow a hospital, heliport, and expansion of the existing medical school. The City is currently updating its General Plan and Zoning Code. The General Plan Update and associated Zoning Code Update are tentatively scheduled for upcoming City Council meetings. Should the General Plan and Zoning Code Updates be approved, the proposed uses would continue to be conditionally permitted on the site and the Project would be reviewed for other necessary entitlements.

If these approvals are granted by the City, the City would also then grant building permits for all non-hospital building components of the Hospital Project (such as demolition, grading, parking, and landscaping). Building permits for the hospital building itself would be issued by the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD), who is the legal authority for permitting and inspecting all hospital projects in the State of California. While the Hospital is being designed to meet Level II Trauma Center standards, the trauma center level designation must be issued by the Sacramento County Emergency Medical Services Agency. The heliport may require Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval.

The DDP includes other non-Hospital Project buildings such as new and redesigned campus facilities, dormitories, and nearby medical office buildings. These components of the DDP would be approved under the DDP as to location and use, but each will require its own subsequent design approvals and building permits as development of those components is ready to proceed.

Question: When will construction on the Hospital Project begin?

Answer: CNU is targeting a spring 2020 start of construction for the Hospital Project. This estimate is dependent upon, among other things, project financing and CNU’s receipt of all necessary governmental approvals and permits. This schedule is subject to change.
Question: When will the hospital open?
Answer: CNU is targeting a late 2022 opening of the hospital. This estimate is dependent upon, among other things, CNU’s receipt of all necessary governmental approvals and permits, and is subject to change.
Question: What will happen to the businesses that are in the Shopping Center?
Answer: The City has been advised by CNU that a number of existing businesses (approximately six or seven) are located in buildings that would be demolished to make way for the Hospital Project. Of these, the City was advised by CNU that approximately three to four businesses have lease rights that go beyond the start of construction of the Hospital Project. Those businesses are tenants of CNU, and CNU and the business will need to come to an amenable arrangement for their relocation, lease termination, or other settlement prior to construction commencing. This is a private matter between CNU and its tenants, to which the City is not a party; however, the City is prepared to assist any business in need of relocation with economic development services to attempt to retain that business in the City.
Question: Why can’t CNU build their hospital in another location?
Answer: CNU is a private company who has made a business decision to make an application to create a university and medical district (i.e., the District Development Plan) and to construct the Hospital Project on property it owns near its existing campus location. Other than land use, design, and building permit authority, the City can’t require the Hospital Project to be built at another location, whether on public or private property. The City has discussed alternative locations with CNU, but CNU has advised the City it intends to proceed with the hospital project application on its Shopping Center land.
Question: What effect will the Hospital Project have on traffic? Safety? The environment? Parking?

Answer: City review of the Project will include an analysis of consistency with the design and development standards of the Elk Grove Municipal Code. This review includes, but is not limited to, building heights and setbacks; site circulation and parking; architectural design; landscaping; and roadway improvements. Project review will involve City Departments such as the Development Services Department, Public Works, Police, and Economic Development, and outside agencies such as the Consumes Community Services District (Fire), the County of Sacramento (water and sewer), Caltrans, and the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality District.

The Project is also subject to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Pursuant to CEQA Guidelines, the City anticipates the preparation of an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Project. Areas of study for potential impacts include traffic and transportation, public services (police, fire, and emergency services), noise, water supply, air quality, biological resources, aesthetics, and light and glare. The EIR will be circulated for public review and comments. To the extent feasible, adverse impacts will be mitigated through the EIR process.

Question: What will the economic impacts of the Hospital Project be?
Answer: Although the applicant, CNU, has made statements about the potential favorable economic impact of the Hospital Project on the City, at this time the City has not validated or confirmed CNU’s economic analysis.
Question: Is the City providing CNU any economic development incentives or subsidies?
Answer: Because of its potential favorable economic impacts in terms of new jobs, capital investment, and tax revenue generation, the Hospital Project is likely eligible for financial incentives under the City’s Economic Development Incentive Program; however, no request for an incentive is currently being considered. If an incentive were to be considered, the City would conduct its own economic impact analysis as part of that process, would formulate a recommendation, and would seek City Council approval for any incentive, which would require a public hearing under State law.

© 2019 City of Elk Grove