Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Genentech Project May Take New Step

Genentech Project May Take New Step
By Melissa Murphy/Staff Writer

Biotech giant Genentech could be a step closer to building a new research support facility in Dixon, pending a City Council decision tonight.

The Dixon Planning Commission earlier this month approved the project, a 140,000-square-foot facility on Fitzgerald Drive. Now the decision rests in the hands of the council.

Proponents have indicated that in order for the project to move ahead, certain assurances and assistance are required.

In a staff report, the city wishes to establish a Memorandum of Understanding with Genentech, to address four elements:

• Release and termination of a light-and-air easement along the western boundary of the project site;

• Release and termination of a roadway dedication;

• Cooperation related to the possible relocation of a 60-inch-diameter storm drain and an 8-inch-diameter sewer line which bisect the property from east to west, and;

• Assistance is requested to process the application expeditiously.

In March, City Manager Warren Salmons sent a letter to Genentech expressing the city's enthusiasm in welcoming the company to Dixon.

City staff also anticipates a catalyst effect, not only with respect to potential future investment by Genentech, but potentially by other biotechnology competitors and ancillary industries, a staff report said.

The City Council meets at 7 p.m. in the Council Chamber, 600 East A St.

Melissa Murphy can be reached at dixon@thereporter.com.

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