Sign our Initiative Petition!

Remember Measure G?

G would have allowed unlimited building heights and density on 782 acres in the heart of Redlands. More than 6,000 apartment dwellers would be fit into that area, including the mall.

Any area within a half-mile radius of a commuter rail station is a “Transit Village” area.  Three Arrow train stations in Redlands means three Transit Villages. (Downtown, UR, and New York/ESRI). Redlands voters defeated Measure G by 65% to 35% – almost a 2 – 1 ratio!

Yet the City of Redlands is ignoring the will of the voters.  Both the 2035 General Plan and the Transit Villages Specific Plan Draft (TVSP) were written before the Measure G vote.  The city is proceeding with those plans.

What would the initiative do?

  • Limit building heights to 40’ in the Downtown and University of Redlands Transit Villages Areas. It would allow building heights of 52’ in the New York Street/ESRI Transit Villages Area.
  • Prevent buildings taller than two stories next to single-story homes without the consent of the owner of the single-story home.
  • Increase parking requirements over what is currently specified in the TVSP.
  • Replace a 4/5 council vote enabling density exceptions with a 5/5 council vote. This is necessary so four city council members could not override the objections of a fifth council member opposing its location. This makes every voting district equally powerful.

History of Growth Management

Over the last 40 years Redlands voters have passed growth management measures. The most influential was Measure U, which limited building heights to 35’ and the annual number of housing units to 400. Measure U also limited population density.

The problem is Measure U does not apply to the Transit Villages Areas.

  • The 2035 General Plan and the Transit Villages Specific Plan (TSVP)  allow 78’ tall buildings. The Citibank building is 85’ tall. 
  • The TVSP must have an Environmental Impact Report. This report is due completion this December (may be delayed due to Covid). Once complete, the City Council will approve the Transit Villages Specific Plan. Once approved, the plan would be difficult to change.
  • Friends of Redlands (FOR) and Redlanders for Responsible Growth Management support an initiative on a future ballot that would amend the 2035 General Plan covering the Downtown Transit Villages Area. The initiative would override the city’s plans outlined in the Transit Villages Specific Plan (TVSP).


1. Where did the city get the authority to develop all these growth plans?
The state of California Transit Village Development Planning Act of 1994 (Government Code Section 65460-65460.11) allows for cities to prepare transit village plans for designated transit villages districts. Such districts would cover a half-mile radius surrounding a given transit station.

2. Is the mall included in the Transit Villages Area?
The General Plan and the new Transit Villages Plan all include mall redevelopment. The mall is clearly under the influence of the Transit Villages Planning Area within a half-mile radius of Downtown Arrow Station. This is documented on maps and in text.

3. Why a 40’ building height and not a 35’ building height?
The downtown transit villages area and a good part of downtown are in a designated flood zone. Under current building codes, any structure built in this area must be raised above a possible flood. This dimension is generally a minimum of 3.5’. In addition, building codes for earthquake and fire safety along with wiring and plumbing standards generally call for 2’ between floors. With 10’ ceiling heights, the result is a building that is 39.5’.

4. Why allow a 52’ building height in the New York Transit Villages Area?
The state of California is becoming involved in local planning. If we do not allow 4 story building somewhere in the Transit villages Area the state will surely force the issue. Also, several of ESRI buildings are already approaching 52’ or more. Basically, the ESRI campus is already non-compliant with the initiative. Lastly, the New York Transit Village Area is close to being built out. Most of the area is commercial in nature.

5. How many signatures are needed to qualify the initiative for a ballot measure?
a) Gather over 4,000 valid signatures of registered Redlands voters to qualify for a general election.
b) Gather over 6,000 valid signatures of registered Redlands voters to qualify for a special election. This option is preferred because the city would have to pay for the election and would most likely accept the demands of the petition without an election.

6. Why so many signatures?
The numbers are based on percentages of Redlands registered voters. Some signatures will end up invalid due to errors. Thus, extra signatures are needed to assure that we have enough valid signatures.

7. When is the deadline for the petition?
FOR is currently collecting signatures. We must obtain all signatures by an early February 2021 deadline. 

8. Interested in signing or volunteering to help collect signatures?

9. Interested in helping fund our effort?
Please send a check made out to our PAC, Redlanders For Responsible Growth Management. Send to 421 San Timoteo Road, Redlands, CA 92373.