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TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL
FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT
DATE: MARCH 2, 2004
SUBJECT: APPEAL OF A GRADING PERMIT AND SITE PLAN REVIEW (case no. zon2003-00039), FOR PROPERTY LOCATED AT 30637 CALLE DE SUENOS. (Applicant: Tomaro Architecture; Property Owner: Jody and Ilka Rice; Appellants: Anshoo Gupta, Property Owner of 30621 Calle de Suenos, & Carl Steadly, Property Owner of 30615 Calle de Suenos)
Staff Coordinator: Dave Blumenthal, Associate Planner
Adopt Resolution No. 2004-__, denying the appeal thereby upholding the Planning Commission’s approval of Grading Permit and Site Plan Review (Case No. ZON2003-00039) to allow the construction of a new single-family residence at 30637 Calle de Suenos.
On February 3, 2004, the City Council conducted a public hearing to consider an appeal of the Planning Commission’s approval of a Grading Permit and Site Plan Review (Case No. ZON2003-00039). After considering all written and oral testimony, the Council denied the appeal by a 4-0 vote, with Mayor Gardiner being absent.
Based on the Council’s discussion during the public hearing, the City Attorney recommended that staff be allowed to incorporate additional language into the findings listed in the resolution. As such, staff is forwarding the attached resolution for the City Council to adopt.
Joel Rojas, aicp, Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement
Les Evans, City Manager
RESOLUTION NO. 2004-__
A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DENYING THE APPEAL, THEREBY UPHOLDING THE PLANNING COMMISSION’S APPROVAL OF A GRADING PERMIT AND SITE PLAN REVIEW (CASE NO. ZON2003-00039), WHICH ALLOWS THE CONSTRUCTION OF A 9,206 SQUARE FOOT SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENCE ON A 37,084 SQUARE FOOT UNIMPROVED PARCEL, A SWIMMING POOL WITH SPA AND RELATED EQUIPMENT, AND 821 CUBIC YARDS OF GRADING, FOR PROPERTY LOCATED AT 30637 CALLE DE SUENOS.
WHEREAS, on January 27, 2003, the applicant submitted an application for a Grading Permit and Site Plan Review requesting to construct a 9,206 square foot single-family residence on a 37,084 square foot unimproved parcel, a swimming pool with spa and related equipment, and 821 cubic yards of grading. On February 26, 2003, staff completed the initial review of the proposed plans, at which time the application was deemed incomplete due to missing information on the project plans and/or applications. This additional information was submitted to the City on May 6, 2003; and,
WHEREAS, on May 15, 2003, the applications for Grading Permit and Site Plan Review (collectively Case No. ZON2003-00039) were deemed complete by Staff; and,
WHEREAS, pursuant to the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code Sections 21000 et. seq. ("CEQA"), the State's CEQA Guidelines, California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Section 15000 et. seq., the City's Local CEQA Guidelines, and Government Code Section 65962.5(f) (Hazardous Waste and Substances Statement), Staff found no evidence that Case No. ZON2003-00039, will have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore, the proposed project has been found to be categorically exempt under Class 3 (Section 15303); and,
WHEREAS, on July 16, 2003, after a duly noticed public comment period, the Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement approved the Grading Permit and Site Plan Review (Case No. ZON2003-00039). In accordance with the Municipal Code requirements, a Notice of Decision for the approval was sent to all interested parties; and,
WHEREAS, on July 31, 2003, the appellants (Anshoo Gupta and Carl Steadly) filed a timely appeal of the Director’s decision, requesting that the Planning Commission reverse the approval of Case No. ZON2003-00039. The basis of the appeal is that the approved project causes significant view impairment and is not compatible with the immediate neighborhood character; and,
WHEREAS, on October 14, 2003, the Planning Commission of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes conducted a duly noticed public hearing to consider the appeal. After considering all written and oral testimony, the Planning Commission denied the appeal, thereby upholding the Director’s approval, by a 3-1-2 vote, with Commissioner Duran Reed dissenting, Commissioner Cartwright and Chairman Long abstaining, and Commissioner Cote being absent; and,
WHEREAS, on October 24, 2003, the appellants (Anshoo Gupta and Carl Steadly) filed a timely appeal of the Planning Commission’s decision, requesting that the City Council reverse the approval of Case No. ZON2003-0039. The basis of the appeal is that the approved project causes significant view impairment and is not compatible with the immediate neighborhood character; and,
WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the City Council held a duly noticed public hearing on February 3, 2004, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence; and,
WHEREAS, on February 3, 2003, the City Council directed staff to prepare a resolution denying the appeal, and upholding the Planning Commission’s action.
NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1: That the approved project includes the construction of a 9,206 square foot single family residence with a swimming pool, spa and related equipment, and 821 cubic yards of grading on a 37,084 square foot unimproved parcel.
Section 2: The grading does not exceed that which is necessary for the permitted primary use of the lot, as defined in Chapter 17.96 of the Municipal Code. Single-family residential is the permitted primary use of the property. The grading permit will allow the construction of a single-family residence. Furthermore, the requested 821 cubic yards of grading is consistent with the grading quantities of other homes in the area.
Section 3: The grading and/or related construction does not significantly adversely affect the visual relationships with, or the protected views from, neighboring properties. Any view impairment caused by the structure is not considered significant because the residence will be constructed within the allowable by right 16’/30’ building envelope for downsloping lots and because the applicant is grading down to set the structure into the hillside
Section 4: The nature of the grading minimizes disturbances to the natural contours and finished contours are reasonably natural. The applicant has minimized the grading to areas under the building footprint and terraced area to the west side of the residence to allow for a useable rear yard area. The remaining portions of the property will be left in an undisturbed state.
Section 5: The grading takes into account the preservation of natural topographical features and appearances by means of land sculpturing so as to blend any man-made or manufactured slope into natural topography. As noted in the previous section, the applicant has minimized the grading to areas under the building footprint and terraced area to the west side of the residence to allow for a useable rear yard area. The remaining portions of the property will be left in an undisturbed state.
Section 6: The "neighborhood" for purposes of the neighborhood compatibility analysis for this project is defined by the Municipal Code to include only lots and residences located in the same zoning district as the subject property.
Section 7: The grading and all related construction is compatible with the character of the immediate neighborhood as defined in the Municipal Code. Based on an analysis of the area, it is found that the proposed structure is consistent with the character of the immediate neighborhood with respect to architectural style and materials, bulk and mass, number of stories, structure size, front, side, and rear yard setbacks, and open space between structures.
Section 8: The grading will not cause excessive and unnecessary disturbance of the natural landscape or wildlife habitat through removal of vegetation. The vegetation that exists in the proposed grading area consists primarily of ivy and grass, which is not considered part of the natural vegetation of the area and does not serve as a wildlife habitat.
Section 9: The grading conforms to the standards for grading depths of cut and fill since the maximum depth of fill is 5’-9", which is necessary because the existing slope of the lot causes the need for that amount of fill in order to create the useable rear yard area. However, portions of the proposed grading will occur on slopes that exceed a 35% gradient and will result in retaining walls that have a maximum height of 5’-9", both of which exceed the specific criteria of Municipal Code Section 17.76.040 (E)(9), but which can be permitted pursuant to Municipal Code Section 17.76.040(E)(10) because:
Section 10: The Site Plan Review is warranted since the proposed pool with spa and related equipment meets all of the requirements of Title 17 of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code.
Section 11: The time within which the judicial review of the decision reflected in this Resolution, if available, must be sought is governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure and other applicable short periods of limitation.
Section 12: For the foregoing reasons and based on the information and findings included in the Staff Reports (dated July 9, 2003, October 14, 2003, and February 3, 2004), minutes and other records of proceedings, the City Council of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby denies the appeal, thereby upholding the Planning Commission’s approval of a Grading Permit and Site Plan Review (Case No. ZON2003-00039) which allows for the construction of a 9,206 square foot single family residence on a 37,084 square foot unimproved parcel, a swimming pool with spa and related equipment, and 821 cubic yards of grading, subject to the conditions contained in Exhibit 'A', attached hereto and made a part hereof, which are necessary to protect the public health, safety and welfare in the area.
PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 2nd day of March 2004.
State of California )
I, JO PURCELL, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, hereby certify that the above Resolution No. 2004-__ was duly and regularly passed and adopted by the said City Council at a regular meeting thereof held on March 2, 2004.
Conditions of Approval
(Resolution No. 2004-__)
Grading Permit and Site Plan Review
(Case No. ZON2003-00039)
20’-0" front (proposed 20’)
15’-0" rear (proposed: 142’-3½")
10’-0" one side, 25’ total (proposed: 15’ on north, 13’-7½" on south)
SETBACK CERTIFICATION IS REQUIRED. A LICENSED CIVIL ENGINEER OR SURVEYOR SHALL PREPARE THE CERTIFICATION. CERTIFICATION SHALL BE SUBMITTED TO THE CITY’S BUILDING OFFICIAL FOR REVIEW AND APPROVAL PRIOR TO THE POURING OF FOUNDATIONS.
BUILDING HEIGHT CERTIFICATION IS REQUIRED. A LICENSED CIVIL ENGINEER OR SURVEYOR SHALL PREPARE THE CERTIFICATION. CERTIFICATION SHALL BE SUBMITTED TO THE CITY’S BUILDING OFFICIAL FOR REVIEW AND APPROVAL PRIOR TO THE BUILDING PERMIT FINAL.
There shall be no retaining walls in the front yard.
Site Plan Review