Contract Planning Services

The City of Rancho Cordova incorporated on July 1, 2003 and initially provided all services through contract staff. Prior to joining Interwest, Paul Junker served as the contract Planning Director to the City of Rancho Cordova from the City’s incorporation in 2003 through 2014. During this period the Planning Department was comprised of contract staff and the team was responsible for preparing the City’s first general plan and zoning code, establishing a blueprint to achieve the City’s long-term vision. Other significant accomplishments of the team included adoption of the Folsom Boulevard Specific Plan, a plan to revitalize an aging strip commercial corridor, and several major greenfield developments that included the 3,800 acre Rio del Oro Specific Plan, a mixed use project that included commercial, employment and public uses and more than 11,000 homes. As a full-service contract Planning Department, the team processed more than 800 discretionary project applications, completed environmental review and compliance, initiated a robust community engagement program and coordinated City programs with regional, state and federal agencies. Over the course of this assignment the City received numerous awards for outstanding accomplishments from the Sacramento Area Council of Governments and the regional and statewide chapters of the American Planning Association. 

ArcGIS Collector App – Homeless Camps

Most cities in California are facing the challenges that come with an increasing homeless population including litter, disease, environmental damages, public safety issues, affected property values, and, most significantly, the tole that that living on the street takes on the mental and physical health of these individuals. While resources and solutions are available, communication with and information on this population can be difficult to establish. In response to this issue in the City of Rancho Cordova, Interwest’s GIS Team created a map-based program to help document, track and clean up homeless camps in the City. The ArcGIS Collector app allowed City staff to quickly document the location and characteristics of camps and their inhabitants on their smartphones, creating a database of information that helped assist in understanding the magnitude, concentration, and locations of different camps. Information gathered in the field can be viewed by staff back in the office for analysis on how best to direct resources for clean-up activities near street rights-of-way, highway interchanges, creek ways and vacant lots. The information gathered was also used by the Rancho Cordova Homeless Outreach Team, comprised of a Homeless Navigator, a code enforcement officer and two police officers, to assist individuals and families experiencing homelessness in the community by providing resource information to potentially help them towards a more stable future. Note: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the enforcement of illegal homeless camps has been put on hold.