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Fremont council approves plan to build 33 homes on Hirsch property in Cameron Hills neighborhood

The City Council on Tuesday approved a plan to build 33 houses on a 7.6-acre property in the Cameron Hills neighborhood.

Lennar Homes, the site’s developer, aims to build single-family residences whose sizes would not exceed 3,954 feet, Fremont associate planner Joel Pullen said.

Adam Tennant of Westgate Ventures, who is working with the property’s developer, Lennar Homes, said they listened to feedback from a number of community meetings held within the past 11 months. As a result, Tennant said, the developer compromised by building at a density that is half of what the city requires, setting aside 25 percent to open space, lowering its house sizes and spacing the homes farther apart.

But about 100 residents, who live near the so-called Hirsch property and oppose the project, attended the meeting. Many of them clapped when neighbors, such as Chris Cavette, spoke against the development. Cavette also wrote to the City Council, saying:

“The site is one of the last remaining hillside spaces available in Fremont and it deserves a development that is sensitive to both the beauty of the area and the character of the surrounding neighborhoods. We feel strongly that Lennar’s proposal has too many large homes packed too closely on small lots with too many undesirable characteristics to be compatible.”

The council approved the plan by a 4-1 margin, as Councilman Vinnie Bacon cast the dissenting vote. The Planning Commission voted 6-0 last month to recommend the development to council members.

The site, at 42800 Caldas Court, is just south of Washington Boulevard and abuts Sabercat Historical Park, a 98-acre park set between Interstate 680 and the Mission San Jose district. The property currently contains a house built in 1951 and a dairy barn.

Chris DeBenedetti