Developers of the proposed World Logistics Center in Moreno Valley and Riverside County have reached a settlement agreement that would provide millions of dollars for road improvements and settle the county’s litigation against the development.
The developer, the county, the City of Moreno Valley and regional transportation officials also would conduct joint studies and projects to address future traffic issues. One result could be a new a program that the county and cities in the county could adopt. The program would set a fee on new distribution-center warehouses, based on facility size, to help pay for road improvements.
The agreement notes that the county, the Riverside County Transportation Commission (RCTC) and the city all favor economic development and want to encourage new jobs in the county and city. The settlement creates an opportunity to invest in transportation infrastructure that supports those goals.
The agreement will help create jobs and at the same time address traffic and other concerns arising from the development, said Supervisor Marion Ashley, whose district includes Moreno Valley.
“It is an opportunity to deal regionally with the effects of future distribution centers while contributing critically needed additional transportation funding to expand our road system, "Ashley said.
The developer, city, county and RCTC each would pay $250,000 for RCTC to conduct a regional transportation study and evaluate the potential for a regional, logistics-related fee on distribution centers and warehouses.
The World Logistics Center's payment toward the regional study would be made no more than 60 days after a final judgment determines that the project’s EIR fully complies with state environmental law and that the center may legally proceed. The developer and the city also would pay $100,000 each for logistics-related studies. Of that, $100,000 will pay for truck and logistics-related studies by the Center for Environmental Research and Technology. The Community Translational Research Institute will use the other $100,000 for public health research and programs.
Under the settlement, the World Logistics Center also would contribute up to an estimated $26.4 million toward regional transportation improvements. That payment would come from a fee based on the square footage of new facilities.
If the county or at least 75 percent of RCTC’s member cities adopt a regional warehouse fee within two years, Highland Fairview will pay 65 cents per square foot for each operating warehouse within the World Logistics Center. If no regional fee is adopted, the fee would be 50 cents per square foot. Proceeds would be used for projects on Gilman Springs Road and SR-60.
This fee includes $3 million for safety-related improvements on Gilman Springs Road, which would be paid within 10 days of operations of the first warehouse in the World Logistic Center. That payment to the county would be credited against the proposed regional fee.
Also included within this fee is another $3 million to be paid to RCTC, $2 million of which would be used for engineering studies and project development work for expanding SR-60 between the I-215 and Gilman Springs Road. The other $1 million would go toward the same work for the Theodore Street interchange at SR-60. Those amounts will be paid within 10 days after a certificate of occupancy is issued for the four-millionth square foot of warehouse space within the center. The parties will jointly determine how to spend the money.
The agreement also calls for the city, the county and Highland Fairview to cooperate to determine the best alignment and configuration for Gilman Springs Road adjacent to the World Logistics Center. Highland Fairview will be entitled to Transportation Uniform Mitigation Fee (TUMF) credit for the money it spends to improve Gilman Springs Road, to the extent eligible under the TUMF program.
This agreement does not settle the claims of any other parties, besides the County and RCTC, that have filed lawsuits against the project.