Tomodachi Park is a Laguna Preserve park, located at 6665 Sebastopol Avenue. It was completed in 2013 and resulted from collaboration with the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District that allowed the City to purchase the 'Village Park' property. Park improvements occurred in the open space area of the property; the mobile home use has been maintained.
The entire ‘Village Park’ property was purchased by the City for park purposes. However, the Village Park mobile home use has been maintained, and the City has not made a determination as to the status of the mobile home use. The City did prepare a conceptual plan for park-related improvements of the entire property; Tomodachi Park represents implementation of one portion of this plan.
Tomodachi Park is approximately 8.7 acres and includes picnic tables, barbecues, a short trail segment, and native tree planting. The intent of the park design is to be a passive use park in the Laguna Preserve system. The park includes stately Valley Oaks and access to the Laguna channel. Low split-rail-type fencing delineates the park area from the adjacent mobile home area to protect the privacy of the Village Park residents. The improvements were also designed so as not to conflict with Caltrans frontage improvements related to the pending Highway 12 bridge replacement project. The remaining mobile home area is approximately 4 acres in size.
The entire site is in the 100-year floodplain, with lower areas generally subject to annual flooding, and the entire site at risk in a major flood. Park improvements have been designed to be generally compatible with flooding; mobile homes are at substantial flood risk.
The planned Caltrans bridge replacement project will have temporary impacts on the property, but will improve access by constructing a sidewalk along the property frontage and reconfiguring the driveway.
Both Tomodachi Park and most of the Village Park property are owned by the City of Sebastopol and have City utilities. However, except for one small unimproved segment, the property is outside of the City limits. Given its location, functions, and ownership, it should be annexed into the City.
A public restroom at Tomodachi Park would be desirable, but there are challenges associated with the location, in the 100-year floodplain.
The Village Park mobile home use presents a marginal appearance and the mobile homes and RVs are located in an area of periodic flooding. In the future, the City may make a determination about the mobile home use, and either enhance the level of maintenance, or change the mobile home use. Both scenarios have substantial budget implications and in addition, housing needs of the mobile home residents are important. In the interim, or if retained, buildings at Village Park should be painted, and likely need other repairs; driveways need repair; landscaping should be improved; and mobile home and RV facilities and lease spaces should be inspected, and maintained appropriately by their private owners.
Another issue identified in prior studies is site vehicle access. Access to a nearby traffic signal through a neighboring property should be explored.
The pending Laguna Preserve Management Plan will review issues and opportunities associated with the Tomodachi Park portion of the property.
See: Feasibility Study