Developer changes plans for Carmel Valley Worsch Way project


By Karen Billing

Developer Gary Levitt announced last week that he has abandoned his plans for a Worsch Way development of eight homes atop a hill off Worsch Drive and Del Mar Trails. He made the announcement at the Carmel Valley Community Planning Board’s regional issues subcommittee meeting, citing too much resistance from neighbors. The project will instead be a straight subdivision of 11 homes at street level.

“After last month’s meeting I heard very clearly from the neighbors that the planned proposal was not a plan the neighbors wanted,” Levitt said.

The committee expressed disappointment that his original plan wouldn’t move forward.

“I hope you find another site for it soon,” said co-chair Anne Harvey, noting planning board chair Frisco White likes to see the “wow” factor that moves away from cookie cutter homes.

Levitt received “limited support” from neighbors for his project that proposed homes in L-shapes with courtyards to give an indoor-outdoor architecture feel stressing green ideas like solar energy and water conservation.

Levitt had originally wanted to keep the homes on the hill to minimize grading and preserving the sloped topography of the property. The neighbors said they did not care about the reduced grading and instead were more concerned about their views and that the project fit with the community.

“I think it’s great, I like it and I think it fits in with the neighborhood,” said neighbor Chris Brown of the new proposal. “I think it addresses everything we’ve been talking about.”

Another resident, Karen Cody, said she was disappointed that the project would instead be more of the same. She said she thought it would’ve added value to the community.

“I understand you’re kowtowing to the neighbors,” Cody said. “But the removal of the dirt is going to be a very long process and will put a lot of wear and tear on our roads.”

Levitt’s original proposal called for 7,500 cubic yards of dirt to be removed. This new plan will likely take three months as the project will remove 30,000 cubic yards of dirt from the site.

“It’s two to three months of dirt, then it’s over,” said one resident. “I’m not overly concerned.”