Angela Hart, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
A Valley of the Moon Alliance (VOTMA) survey tallying an influx of tasting rooms and special events permitted in Sonoma Valley found that since 2004 the county has given new and existing wineries permission to hold nearly 300 additional events in the valley.
Link to VOTMA 2014 survey
Two stalled winery projects along a scenic section of Highway 12 outside Santa Rosa could break ground as soon as this year following the $1.4 million sale of one of the properties.
The wineries, slated for neighboring parcels on the north side of Highway 12, with views of nearby Hood Mountain and Annadel State Park, were approved in 2012 and 1999 by a county zoning board. The projects drew little public scrutiny at the time, but their advancement now has raised concerns in Sonoma Valley about the additional traffic, noise and other impacts the adjacent businesses could generate.
The worries reflect not just the outlook of some neighbors — Oakmont sits directly across the highway and Kenwood is just to the east — but the escalating Wine Country debate about the expansion of wineries, and especially those that double as event centers, into rural pockets of Sonoma County.
Read more at: Winery projects moving forward in Sonoma Valley off | The Press Democrat