March 11, 2022 | Moonshine Ink
Last year, the long-awaited Truckee Artist Lofts opened to the public — the first development of the Truckee Railyard on the eastern-most end of Donner Pass Road. In the works is the Railyard Market Square, to include a grocery store, outdoor plaza, retail space, and tenant building, overseen by Foothill Partners.
But other Railyard deals have fallen through, and some still lag. With a whole lot of the site yet to be constructed, readers and Ink staff want to know what remains on the table and what has fallen to the cutting room floor. The Town of Truckee and Railyard developer answer.
What’s the status of the Truckee Railyard? Is there a completion date on the horizon?
The Railyard Master Plan was adopted in 2009 and amended in 2016. The master plan outlines the standards for development in the area, including maximum allowed development (residential units, hotel units, and square footages for retail, office, etc.). The public infrastructure (roads, utilities, and sidewalks) has been completed through the balloon track. Public infrastructure improvements (roads, sidewalks, the realignment and restoration of Trout Creek, and the extension of Church Street to a new roundabout at Glenshire Drive) east of the balloon track are anticipated to be completed by 2023.
There is no deadline for completion of the private development in the master plan area; it is reliant solely on the market and interest from developers. So far, only one project has received land use approval and has been constructed in the Railyard — the Artist Lofts, a 77-unit affordable housing project with approximately 3,700 square feet of retail. The only other approved project in the Railyard is The Crossing, a redevelopment of the previous Truckee-Tahoe Lumber Company downtown campus to two commercial buildings totaling 21,685 square feet and an outdoor plaza.
Other projects that have been reviewed and approved by the Town of Truckee include the Truckee Art Haus (a three-screen movie theater) and Nugget Markets (a 34,000-square-foot grocery store), which were ultimately not pursued by the developers and the approvals have since expired.
~ Yumie Dahn, senior planner at the Town of Truckee
Thank you for this opportunity to update Moonshine Ink readers on what’s happening with the Truckee Railyard.
Since the amended master plan was approved in 2016, we have seen a great deal of progress with new infrastructure throughout the downtown, relocation of the Union Pacific operations, and most recently the completion of the Truckee Artist Lofts to provide quality new affordable housing. We are now pleased to see that some final critical infrastructure improvements within the Railyard site are moving forward this year.
At the Feb. 8 meeting, the Truckee Town Council approved funding for the initial engineering of a new public transit center which will be located within the Railyard site.
Additionally, the Town of Truckee is preparing for phase one of the Trout Creek Restoration project, which is designed to restore the natural function of the creek, improve the riparian and aquatic habitat, provide flood protection, improve water quality, and bring back the natural beauty of the creek. Also slated to begin construction this year is a Church Street extension project that will connect downtown with Glenshire Drive. A roundabout and bridge are also part of these 2022 road construction plans.
We are excited about all of these improvements, especially the new road system that will provide motorists and folks on bikes an alternative way to arrive into downtown Truckee via a new eastern gateway. All of this progress sets the stage for the next phases of the project to begin coming to life.
~ Scott Kyman, managing member with Truckee Development Associates
Market Square Truckee is a daily needs retail/mixed-use shopping district in the south balloon area of the Truckee Railyard. New Moon Natural Foods will anchor the project in a 20,000-square-foot building in an expanded, full service specialty grocer format, three times its current size. The remainder of Market Square will include a broad mix of retail and service uses, second and third floor consumer services, a rooftop restaurant and bar with views of Mount Rose and the Truckee River, and a large public area next door to New Moon for outside dining and specialty events. Market Square is expected to open fall 2024.
Phase one of Old Truckee Lumberyard — the rebuild of the former home of Truckee Tahoe Lumber — is the adaptive reuse of the lumber storage buildings on the property, surrounding a big public space on Church Street. The older timber structure is intended for a major restaurant and bar. The larger steel structure is being rebuilt as a two-level building with casual food and beverage and local retail merchants on the ground floor and professional services above. Phase two is intended to include a wedding and events center, more retail, four loft townhouses, and 40 affordable housing apartments. Phase one will open in the fall of 2023.
~ Doug Wiele, founding partner, Foothill Partners