Rancho Palos Verdes City Council
   

JUNE 1, 2004 BORDER ISSUES STATUS REPORT

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND COUNCILMEMBERS

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING & CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: JUNE 1, 2004

SUBJECT: BORDER ISSUES STATUS REPORT

Staff Coordinator: Kit Fox, AICP, Senior Planner

RECOMMENDATION

Review the current status of border issues and provide direction to Staff, as appropriate.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This month’s report includes:

  • A status report on the completion of the County Housing Authority’s Harbor Hills community center in Lomita;

  • A status report on the Rolling Hills Covenant Church expansion project in Rolling Hills Estates;
  • A brief report on Marymount College’s final acquisition of a portion of the former Navy housing site in San Pedro;

  • A follow-up report on the submittal of final comments regarding the County’s proposed updates to its General Plan;
  • A follow-up report on a new proposal to establish a "semi-commercial" costume rental business on Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District property in Rolling Hills;
  • A copy of the response to our comments to the Los Angeles Unified School District on the District’s Draft Program EIR for the New School Construction Program; and,
  • A copy of our comments on a 41-unit seniors-only condominium project on Deep Valley Drive in Rolling Hills Estates.

BACKGROUND

The following is the regular monthly report to the City Council on various "border issues" potentially affecting the residents of Rancho Palos Verdes. The complete text of the current status report is available for review on the City’s website at:

http://www.palosverdes.com/rpv/planning/content/20040601_BorderIssues_StatusRpt.cfm

DISCUSSION

Current Border Issues

Harbor Hills Community Center, Los Angeles County Housing Authority/Lomita

The 12,650-square-foot recreational facility for the County Housing Authority’s Harbor Hills community in Lomita is nearing completion. The project was approved by the City of Lomita in Summer 2002 and began construction in Summer 2003. Staff is unaware of any complaints from Rancho Palos Verdes residents during the course of construction. After completion of the project, we will continue to monitor the site for resident complaints regarding the operation of the center.

Rolling Hills Covenant Church Expansion, Rolling Hills Estates

An April 25, 2004 Los Angeles Times article noted that the City of Rolling Hills Estates and project proponents and opponents were still trying to reach a compromise over the proposed expansion of Rolling Hills Covenant Church. However, on April 29, 2004 the Palos Verdes Peninsula News reported that the mediation process had broken off and that the City Council would take up the review of the project at a special meeting on May 24, 2004. Staff attended the meeting and submitted the attached comments, reiterating our concerns regarding the noise and air quality impacts to Rolling Hills Riviera residents that would result from the proposed soil export to Green Hills Memorial Park if the project were approved, and suggesting that further analysis of a soil export alternative would be needed if the project were to be approved.

At the May 24th meeting, the Rolling Hills Estates City Council took additional public testimony and voted unanimously to deny the project. The Rolling Hills Estates City Council is expected to adopt a resolution memorializing this action at its next meeting on June 8, 2004. It appears likely that, based upon statements made during the public hearings by the project proponents, legal action against the City of Rolling Hills Estates will be the next step for this project.

San Pedro Facility Restoration Advisory Board, US Navy/Los Angeles (San Pedro)

Marymount College’s acquisition of an 11.3-acre portion of the former Navy housing site on Palos Verdes Drive North on May 10, 2004 was reported in the Daily Breeze and Palos Verdes Peninsula News on May 11th and May 13th, respectively (see attached articles). The 86 townhouse units had been leased from the Navy for student and faculty housing since 1998.

Los Angeles County General Plan Update, Unincorporated Areas of the Peninsula

Staff finalized the attached comments and submitted them to the County on May 6, 2004. The public comment period for the County’s General Plan update ended today. Additional information is available on-line at:

http://planning.co.la.ca.us/gp_update/drp_gp_home.cfm

PVPUSD’s "Costume Closet," Rolling Hills

On May 18, 2004, the Rolling Hills Planning Commission adopted Resolution 2004-15 approving the "Costume Closet" project by a 4-1 vote. Although a Rancho Palos Verdes resident expressed concerns about this project at the Planning Commission’s first public hearing, it appears that the main opposition to the project is from nearby residents in Rolling Hills.

The Rolling Hills City Council considered this action as an "information-only" item on May 24, 2004. The Rolling Hills City Council had the option to either receive and file this case, or to take it under jurisdiction, thereby beginning the public review process anew. Since the Rolling Hills City Council chose to receive and file the matter, the Commission’s decision is now final unless appealed by an interested party within thirty (30) days of the Commission's action, or by June 18, 2004. Staff will continue to follow the progress of this application and report back to the City Council in the July 6, 2004 Border Issues report.

LAUSD’s New School Construction Program, Eastview Area of the City

On May 11, 2004, the City received a copy of the Final Program Environmental Impact Report (PEIR) for the District’s New School Construction program. The Final PEIR includes responses to our April 12, 2004 comments on the Draft PEIR (see attachments). In general, the District acknowledged our comments but indicated that the issues raised would be addressed by the project-level environmental review of future school expansion and new construction projects. The Board of Education is scheduled to conduct a public meeting to certify the Final PEIR on June 8, 2004.

New Border Issues

Senior Condominiums at 901 Deep Valley Drive, Rolling Hills Estates

On May 5, 2004, the City received a Notice of Intent to adopt a Mitigated Negative Declaration (MND) for a proposed 41-unit seniors-only condominium project at 901 Deep Valley Drive in Rolling Hills Estates. This is the first new mixed-use project in Rolling Hills Estates’ "downtown" district since the announcement of the preparation of the City’s Downtown Master Plan.

The MND identified potentially significant environmental effects requiring mitigation in the areas of air quality, geology and soils, and noise. The Rolling Hills Estates Planning Commission conceptually approved the project on May 17, 2004. Staff forwarded the attached comments on the MND to the City of Rolling Hills Estates on May 24, 2004, which was the end of the 21-day public comment period.

The Rolling Hills Estates Planning Commission is expected to take final action on the project on June 14, 2004. Staff intends to follow the progress of this application and report back to the City Council in the July 6, 2004 Border Issues report.

Respectfully submitted:

Joel Rojas, AICP, Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement

Reviewed by:

Les Evans, City Manager

Attachments:

Comments on the Rolling Hills Covenant Church project (dated May 5, 2004)

Comments on the County General Plan goals and policies (dated May 6, 2004)

Agenda and Staff report for the "Costume Closet" project in Rolling Hills

Response to comments on LAUSD’s New School Construction Program PEIR

Comments on the senior condominium project on Deep Valley Road (dated May, 24, 2004)