The Fresno City Council approved plans Thursday for a large residential development in Northwest Fresno. The council approved a rezone application, tract map and final environment impact report for Granville Homes’ proposed “Parc West” development on the west side of North Grantland avenue between west Gettysburg and Ashlan avenues, west of Highway 99.

The proposed development consists of 844 lots for single-family residential homes across 160 acres to be developed in phases. The property has been within the city’s Sphere of Influence and approved for some form of urban use since 1984. The land was annexed into the city in 2014 as part of the former Westlake project, which Granville Homes later abandoned.

The Parc West project is located on the Westlake project’s roughly 1/3 northern acreage. Westlake consisted of 2,600 lots on 430 acres. According to the development plans, there will be trails adjacent to major streets of the development. A message left for Granville Homes was not returned Thursday afternoon.

New electric vehicle fast chargers installed at Tejon Pass Rest Area, throughout Central Valley

The Tejon Pass Rest Area will be the recipient of new electric vehicle fast chargers that will assist drivers of those automobiles traveling through the Central Valley or over the Grapevine. According to a news release from the California Department of Transportation, the charging station is one of nine that were recently installed by Caltrans throughout the state, including nine new stations in the Central Valley. “Fast chargers are essential to continue growing EV adoption in California and meeting our state’s goals for combating climate change,” Caltrans Director Toks Omishakin said in the news release. “Expanding the availability of convenient fast-charging stations along state highways is significant for the future of California transportation.”

There are four chargers at the Tejon Pass Rest Area on the southbound side of Interstate 5, a popular stopping point for travelers located about 60 miles north of Los Angeles and 40 miles south of Bakersfield, the news release states. Caltrans District 7 Director Tony Tavares said there will be 18 other chargers staggered 40 miles apart in the region, as Caltrans attempts to reduce “recharging concerns for plug-in EV drivers on long-distance trips through the Central Valley.”

The Level 3 DC fast chargers provide an approximate 80 percent charge in 30 minutes to electric vehicles with fast-charging capability, the news release states. The chargers have universal connectors and are able to serve all electric vehicles on the market, including Teslas with an adapter. The $4.5 million project was funded by Caltrans and the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District in Fresno, according to the news release.

Here are the new charging stations in the Central Valley, according to Caltrans:

• Junction Highway 58/Highway 184 in Bakersfield

• Caltrans Maintenance Station on Highway 41 and next to I-5 in Kettleman City

• Caltrans Maintenance Station, 805 S. Lexington St., next to Route 99 in Delano

• C.H. Warlow Rest Area NB/SB Highway 99 in Kingsburg

• Philip S. Raine Rest Area at SB Highway 99 near Tulare

• Philip S. Raine Rest Area at NB Highway 99 near Tulare

• Caltrans District 6 Office, 1283 N. West Ave., next to Highway 99 in Fresno

Tech company moving into downtown Modesto, to partner with SCOE to bolster workforce

Local coding academy Bay Valley Tech has reached a three-year agreement with the Stanislaus County Office of Education to expand its free classes. Additionally, the school will be moving its co-working space to downtown Modesto.

Bay Valley Tech’s new 1325 H St. location – the building once occupied by The Bee and purchased from McClatchy by SCOE in 2016 – will be used as “a startup incubator to support local entrepreneurs with affordable offices, digital marketing expertise, software consultants and a steady flow of skilled talent from its fast-growing software training programs,” according to a news release.

With the co-working space, Bay Valley Tech, formerly based in north Modesto, hopes to facilitate the expansion of new companies into the Central Valley. “Our expanded partnership with Bay Valley Tech will benefit the region’s students and economy for many years,” Scott Kuykendall, Stanislaus County Superintendent of Schools said in the release. “Bay Valley Tech’s exceptional program is making a positive impact across the county, and we look forward to our growing collaboration.” His office works to ensure local job-seekers are “ready to enter self-sustaining employment and careers,” according to the release. This year, Bay Valley Tech is working toward its goal of training 1,000 computer programmers in the region. Their free coding classes have started students off in careers at large companies like E&J Gallo, as well as local startups.

The tech industry is one of the few sectors reporting job growth despite the COVID-19 pandemic, with 319,000 new IT jobs added to the national labor force in December. Yet according to the news release, companies are still reporting a shortage of computer programmers. To address this shortage, Bay Valley Tech will announce agreements with new companies to hire more of its Central Valley and Bay Area code academy alumni. The program is “paying dividends” for students throughout the county, SCOE’s Director of Career Tech Education, Dallas Plaa, said in the news release.

Plaa, who oversees the office’s adult education and career training programs, as well as its Computer Support Specialist certification partnership with Modesto Junior College, said “SCOE’s partnership with Bay Valley Tech has allowed our two organizations to achieve more effective and cost-efficient results than if we had operated separate programs.” “Our organizations’ common goal is to train and enable students to become productive citizens in our local community,” he said. “Bay Valley Tech’s code academy is a complement to some of SCOE’s other programs at this same location. We are thrilled to expand this successful partnership.”


Tachi Palace Casino Resort in Lemoore has begun a yearlong expansion and remodel. The $80 million project includes interior and exterior improvements with plans to add 24,000 square feet of additional space and linking current amenities to create a more cohesive campus, according to a news release.

Exterior work will be included in the yearlong expansion project. Part of the plan includes connecting the Coyote Entertainment Center, casino and hotel; creating an easier flow through both the main floor and third floor; an expansive sports bar with indoor and outdoor dining; an extended food court; large high-limit room on the third floor and updated hotel rooms. “We can’t think of a better way to kick off 2021 than to begin our exciting expansion and continue to offer the ultimate experience for our guests,” said Michael Olujic, general manager of Tachi Palace Casino Resort. “These improvements will give Tachi Palace even more of a resort feel, allowing guests to have more fluid movement between our amenities including Coyote Entertainment Center, the hotel, casino, gas station and new offerings. They will no longer have to leave one to easily access the other.”

Tachi palace partnered with Las Vegas Based Cuningham Group Architecture, Inc. for architecture and design services. “In addition to connecting all the amazing offerings at Tachi Palace Casino Resort, our expansion will include more, much-needed job opportunities for our community,” said Leo Sisco, chairman of Santa Rosa Rancheria Tachi-Yokut Tribe. “We are proud to continue our commitment to our local community, as our economic development projects not only provide a more pleasant experience for our patrons, they also contribute to the betterment of our local area.”

A spokesperson said it was hard to estimate how many jobs the expansion would create in the current environment for the entertainment industry.

Faraday Future to List on NASDAQ Through Merger With Property Solutions Acquisition Corp. With Estimated $1 Billion in Proceeds

  • Merger to provide an estimated $1.0 billion of gross proceeds to Faraday Future (“FF”), including $230 million in cash held by PSAC in trust assuming no redemptions and an upsized $775 million fully committed common stock PIPE at $10.00 per share.
  • Transaction is expected to fully fund the production of class defining ultimate-performance luxury electric FF 91 within 12 months of transaction close. This transaction also supports the future development of the company’s unique I.A.I system (Internet, Autonomous Driving, Intelligence).
  • FF has adopted a global hybrid manufacturing strategy consisting of its manufacturing facility in Hanford, California and a contract manufacturing partner in South Korea. FF 91 brings to market class-leading luxury and ultimate performance supported by nearly 900 filed or issued patents globally for its Variable Platform Architecture, Propulsion system, and Advanced Internet, Autonomous Driving and Intelligence (I.A.I.) technology.
  • Estimated post transaction equity value of approximately $3.4 billion; combined company to be named Faraday Future Inc. and will trade under the new ticker symbol “FFIE” with transaction close expected in Q2 2021.
  • PIPE anchor investors include leading institutional shareholders from the U.S. and Europe, a Top 3 Chinese OEM, and a Tier-1 city in China.
  • Noted SPAC Sponsor, Riverside Management Group (RMG), is serving as financial partner and advisor to PSAC.
  • All existing Faraday Future shareholders, including management, are rolling all of their equity.

Southwest Airlines to begin flights from Fresno airport on April 25

The discount airline based in Dallas, Texas, plans to have a daily Fresno flight to and from Denver starting at $69 each way and three flights to and from Las Vegas starting at $39 each way.

Travelers can connect to more than 50 other cities from Denver or Las Vegas. “We’re boldly launching this eagerly anticipated new year by doubling-down on our consistent commitment to California to offer our value and flexibility to now 13 airports in the state,” said Andrew Watterson, Southwest Airlines executive vice president and chief commercial officer. “Not only does Southwest Airlines celebrate 50 years of service in 2021, we’re gratefully acknowledging the support of Californians who have made us the largest air carrier of fliers traveling nonstop to, from, and within The Golden State for 20 consecutive years.” The airline is accepting Fresno bookings immediately online or by phone at 800-I-FLY-SWA.,offer%20flights%20at%20Fresno%20airport%20in%20spring%202021

Federal government approves Hard Rock casino proposed for south of Bakersfield

The federal government has approved a plan by the Tejon Indian Tribe to operate a Hard Rock Casino resort 14 miles south of Bakersfield. Now it is up to Gov. Gavin Newsom, who must concur with the decision before the plan can become a reality. “From the start of our relationship with the United States government in 1851, our Tribe has fought for a homeland for our people. Today we are two major steps closer to that dream,” Octavio Escobedo III, chairman of the Tejon Indian Tribe, said in a statement. “The Department’s decision enables us to move closer to the promise of self-determination through economic development.”

On Jan. 8, Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Tara Sweeney signed a record of decision and issued a secretarial decision finding the proposed site suitable for the tribe’s plans and allowing gaming to take place at the location. Newsom must concur with the federal government’s decision, a choice he has a year to make. If he does, the U.S. Department of Interior can take the land into trust and the tribe will finally have a place to call home. “This has been a long but worthwhile journey for the Tribe and its citizens,” Escobedo wrote. “These decisions are necessary and significant steps toward the development of a tribal homeland for the Tribe, which was landless for more than 150 years.”

In its record of decision, the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs said the casino near Mettler best allow the Tejon Tribe to be self-sufficient and maintain a stable source of revenue to provide for governmental programs. The bureau also considered several alternatives, including a smaller casino, an organic farm, an alternate site along Maricopa Highway and no action. However, the bureau said the Mettler site best meets the “purpose and need” of the tribe.

At the Mettler site, the tribe plans to build a 166,500-square foot gaming floor, along with an 11-story hotel with 400 rooms. A convention space, event center, restaurants, RV park, and joint sheriff and fire station would also be located on the site, along with housing and administrative offices. The entire complex is expected to support 3,000 full-time jobs. The project has earned the support of many local officials, including the Kern County Board of Supervisors. Officially recognized in 2012, the Tejon Tribe now counts 1,111 people as its members, the vast majority living in the Bakersfield area, according to its website.

The environmental review process for the site has been ongoing since 2016. With the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ determination, the tribe can finally put the long process behind them. Still, it is not known when the casino can be opened or even built. Scott Nielson, a consultant managing the project for Hard Rock said a number of steps still need to be completed before a timeline could be made public. In his statement, Escobedo thanked federal officials for their decision, along with local supporters and the Seminole Tribe, which owns Hard Rock Cafe Inc. The Florida tribe, he said, “stood shoulder-to-shoulder with us to help make our dream of restoring our land base a close-at-hand reality.”,decision%20before%20the%20plan%20can%20become%20a%20reality.

Tractor Supply Company is Coming to the City of Merced Soon

The city of Merced announced today that Tractor Supply Company is coming soon. The new business will be opening at the Gateway Marketplace located at Emission Avenue and near the new Arco Station. According to the developers, the store will be Tractor Supply’s new formats and the largest in the market area.

Wonderful Real Estate Begins Construction of Amenity, Training Center at Industrial Park in Shafter, California

Wonderful Real Estate Development has started construction of a new corporate office building, conference center, wellness center, amenity center and vocational school at Wonderful Industrial Park (WIP) in Shafter.

Spanning 98,000 square feet, the logistics park is slated for completion in first-quarter 2022. The development will include a 61,000-square-foot corporate office component, a 37,200-square-foot vocational training center and an 8,500-square-foot restaurant café space.

The corporate office space will be home to more than 200 Central Valley employees, including those working for Wonderful Citrus, Wonderful Pistachios and Almonds, Suterra, Pom Wonderful and Wonderful Real Estate Development. Additionally, the office space will provide large meeting rooms that will be available to companies within WIP and the community at-large.

The development’s Wonderful Wellness Center will include a gym, exercise classes, healthy awareness programs and access to a mobile clinic. In addition to Wonderful Company’s developments, Walmart Inc. is nearing the completion of a 630,000-square-foot distribution facility at WIP. The highly automated property is optimized for handling, packaging and shipping food. The facility is located on 65 acres that Walmart acquired from WIP in 2018. The facility is slated to be fully operational by spring 2021.

Valley Children’s Named Among the Nation’s Top Children’s Hospitals in Patient Safety and Quality

For the second year in a row, Valley Children’s was named a Top Children’s Hospital in the nation by The Leapfrog Group for its excellence in patient safety and quality of care. The Top Children’s Hospital award is one of the most competitive honors American hospitals can receive.

To qualify for the Top Hospitals distinction, hospitals must rank at the top among peers in the annual Leapfrog Hospital Survey, which assesses hospital performance on the highest known standards for quality and patient safety and achieve some of the best performance scores in its category. Valley Children’s exceeded the national standards in areas such as: medication safety, patient and family communication, intensive care management, infection prevention, maternity care, inpatient care and pediatric care.

Better care means children get to go home sooner which is why quality and patient safety is central to everything we do. Patient safety and quality of care depends on systems that anticipate and prevent errors before they cause harm. We advocate for patient safety each and every day and provide the highest level of care as shown in our scores that are among the best in the nation. By involving everyone at Valley Children’s – patients, families, doctors, nurses, support staff, visitors and volunteers – we deliver the highest level of care and patient safety with measurable results.

By exceeding Leapfrog’s standards, Valley Children’s provides nationally recognized care to the 1.3 million children in the Central Valley. Valley Children’s has also been recognized by: US News and World Report, Magnet, Antimicrobial Stewardship Center of Excellence and the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) for being among the best.