Rancho Palos Verdes City Council
   

SEPTEMBER 7, 2004 BORDER ISSUES STATUS REPORT SEPTEMBER 7, 2004 BORDER ISSUES STATUS REPORT

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND COUNCILMEMBERS

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING & CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: SEPTEMBER 7, 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 brief report on the status of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to the Sanitation Districts regarding the soil cover at the Palos Verdes landfill site;
  • A report on the annual San Pedro Facility Restoration Advisory Board meeting and the upcoming Internet auction of the former Navy housing site in San Pedro;

  • A status report on a 140-unit condominium project on the site of the former fitness center at 28000 South Western Avenue in San Pedro;
  • A status report on a proposed 18-unit mixed-use condominium project on the former McDonald’s site at Silver Spur Road and Crenshaw Boulevard in Rolling Hills Estates;
  • A status report on a proposed 5,760-square-foot commercial building at the northeast corner of Crest Road and Highridge Road in Rolling Hills Estates;
  • Review of a Mitigated Negative Declaration for a possible future fiber optic cable installation project by Yipes Enterprise Services; and,
  • Review of a City boundary issue related to the proposed sale of County property in the City of Rolling Hills in the 5300-block of Crest Road.

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/20040907_BorderIssues_StatusRpt.cfm

DISCUSSION

Current Border Issues

South Coast County Golf Course, County of Los Angeles/Rolling Hills Estates

The Mayor forwarded recent e-mails from Joan Davidson, memorializing conversations and correspondence with the Sanitation Districts regarding her Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests about the composition of the existing soil cover at the former Palos Verdes landfill site. Copies of these e-mails are attached to tonight’s report.

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

The annual San Pedro Facility Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) meeting was held on August 18, 2004. Navy personnel presented updates on a variety of on-going soil remediation programs on the site, including:

  • A progress report on the remediation of contaminated soils and groundwater along North Gaffey Street;

  • The latest timelines and funding availability for the clean-up of three remaining contaminated dump sites on the Navy property;

  • A presentation by the Navy’s natural resources expert regarding its on-going efforts to restore critical habitat, monitor population and conduct captive breeding of the Palos Verdes blue butterfly on the site;

  • The status report of the regular monitoring of a capped dump site within the former Palos Verdes housing site; and,

  • An update on the status of the transfer of both former Navy housing sites.

With respect to this last issue, Navy personnel stated that portions of the Palos Verdes site were quitclaimed to Marymount College and Rolling Hills Preparatory School in April and August 2004, respectively. It was also announced that the seventy-six (76) units of homeless housing on the Palos Verdes site would be granted to Volunteers of America (VOA) rather than to South Bay Crossings, since South Bay Crossings was not able to demonstrate its ability to fulfill its obligations to HUD’s satisfaction. Navy personnel also commented briefly on the Internet auction of the San Pedro/John Montgomery housing site.

The activities of the RAB continue to focus primarily upon environmental clean-up throughout the San Pedro Facility, while the disposal of the former housing sites is nearing completion. Therefore, in this and future Border Issues status reports, Staff intends to separate the discussion of the RAB’s activities from the monitoring of future development of the former Navy housing sites.

The website for the auction of the San Pedro/John Montgomery site is now up and running. The property is being marketed as Ponte Vista ("bridge view") to homebuilders through Colliers Seeley, a major international commercial real estate brokerage. The auction is now scheduled to begin later this fall. Copies of the existing site plan and other information from this website are attached to tonight’s report. Additional information about the property and on-line auction is available on-line at:

http://www.PonteVista.com

Also, on August 19, 2004, an article appeared in the Daily Breeze (see attachments) regarding the Coast Guard’s use of the San Pedro/John Montgomery site as an urban warfare training ground for possible deployment to the Middle East.

Condominiums at 28000 South Western Avenue, Los Angeles (San Pedro)

According to the developer’s representative, development applications were submitted to the City of Los Angeles in mid-August 2004. The tentative tract map for the project is expected to be submitted to the City of Los Angeles on or before October 1, 2004. In addition, the developer remains interested in bidding on the adjacent San Pedro/John Montgomery Navy housing site. Staff will continue to follow this project in future reports.

Mixed-Use Condominiums at 981 Silver Spur Road, Rolling Hills Estates

The Rolling Hills Estates City Council reviewed this 18-unit mixed-use project on August 24, 2004. Among the project entitlements requested was a variance to exceed the 44-foot height limit. In Staff’s comments to the City of Rolling Hills Estates on June 30, 2004, we noted our concerns regarding aesthetic impacts related to this variance. The Rolling Hills Estates City Council directed the developer to revise the project so that the main roof structure complies with the 44-foot height limit, while allowing an entry tower element at the corner of Crenshaw Boulevard and Silver Spur Road to exceed the height limit. The project was continued to September 14, 2004. Staff intends to follow the progress of this application and report back to the City Council in the October 5, 2004 Border Issues report.

Office/Retail Building at 5883 Crest Road, Rolling Hills Estates

On August 16, 2004, the Rolling Hills Estates Planning Commission voted 6-1 to approve the proposed project at the northeast corner of Crest Road and Highridge Road. Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes residents expressed their concerns about parking, traffic and neighborhood compatibility at the public hearing. The Rolling Hills Estates Planning Commission is expected to adopt a resolution memorializing its decision on September 20, 2004, and this action will be appealable to the Rolling Hills Estates City Council. Staff intends to follow the progress of this application and report back to the City Council in the October 5, 2004 Border Issues report.

New Border Issues

Yipes Fiber Optic Cable Installation Project, California Public Utilities Commission

On August 16, 2004, the City received a Notice of Intent (NOI) to adopt a Mitigated Negative Declaration (MND) for a proposed fiber optic cable installation project by Yipes Enterprise Services. Yipes’ application, which is pending before the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) covers future cable installation projects in nine (9) California counties, including Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, San Francisco, Marin, Contra Costa, Alameda, Santa Clara and San Mateo. The project does not identify specific cables routes or customers to be served by Yipes’ services. As such, the MND is intended to serve as a sort of "program" environmental document that sets performance standards for analyzing potential impacts and for identifying and implementing mitigation measures. According to the NOI, "[this] process provides CEQA compliance for CPUC and responsible agencies, but does not limit the authority of the responsible agencies issuing permits and approvals for future specific project routes."

The MND identifies potentially significant environmental effects requiring mitigation in the areas of aesthetics; air quality; biological resources; cultural resources; geology and soils; hazards and hazardous materials; hydrology and water quality; land use and planning; noise; recreation; transportation and traffic; utilities and service systems; and mandatory findings of significance. Staff intends to forward comments on the MND to the CPUC on or before the end of the public comment period on September 13, 2004, and report back to the City Council in the October 5, 2004 Border Issues report.

Crest Road Boundary Issue, Rolling Hills

On August 19, 2004, the City received a letter from the Los Angeles County Public Works Department regarding the proposed sale of County property in the City of Rolling Hills at the city boundary on Crest Road (Assessor’s Parcel No. 7574-020-900). Earlier this year, Rancho Palos Verdes Planning Staff was contacted by an individual who had recently acquired an abutting parcel (Assessor’s Parcel No. 7574-020-008) and wished to develop it. This individual had initially contacted the City of Rolling Hills, but was informed that the property in question was located in Rancho Palos Verdes.

Based upon review of the tract map and the City’s parcel base maps, it appeared at the time that this parcel and the abutting County parcel were both located in Rancho Palos Verdes. Planning Staff advised this individual that, due to the very small size of his property (2,790 square feet) and the fact that it appeared to be landlocked, it would be difficult to develop without acquiring—or at least acquiring access rights across—the abutting County property. Staff believes that this individual may have approached the County about acquiring the property, thereby prompting the letter from the County regarding its proposed sale. Based upon our recent aerial photos, the County property appears to be improved with the westbound lanes of Crest Road and at least a portion of the Rolling Hills Community Association’s guard house.

Upon receipt of the County’s letter indicating that the County property was in Rolling Hills, Staff again reviewed the tract map, base map and other maps. One of these other maps was an old County address map, which bore the notation "City of Rolling Hills, C.R. 7-26-77" on the County parcel and appeared to show that the city boundary had been moved. With the assistance of our Deputy City Clerk, Staff has now determined that the Rancho Palos Verdes City Council adopted Resolution No. 77-35 on May 19, 1977 (see attachments), thereby transferring both of these parcels (APN 7574-020-900 and 7574-020-008) to the City of Rolling Hills, and adjusting the city boundary accordingly. Staff has advised the Rolling Hills Planning Director of this matter, and she has confirmed that the Rolling Hills City Council adopted a corresponding resolution accepting the transfer. However, the City of Rolling Hills is not convinced that the small abutting parcel (APN 7574-020-008) was included in the transfer, and is asking the County to review the legal description accompanying Resolution No. 77-35 for confirmation.

The County requests comments on the proposed sale of its property by September 25, 2004. Staff intends to respond to this letter, although we expect that the sale of the County parcel will have little impact upon the City. Based upon the County’s review of the legal description accompanying Resolution No. 77-35, Staff will also contact the owner of the abutting parcel (APN 7574-020-008) to advise him in which city his property is located. Staff will report back to the City Council on this matter in the October 5, 2004 Border Issues report.

Respectfully submitted:

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

Reviewed by:

Les Evans, City Manager

Attachments:

E-mail regarding Palos Verdes landfill (8/11/04)

Agenda for San Pedro Facility Restoration Advisory Board meeting (8/18/04)

Site plan and other information from Ponte Vista website

Daily Breeze article (8/19/04) regarding Coast Guard training at Navy housing site

Peninsula News article (8/21/04) regarding Crest Road office retail project

NOI and draft MND for Yipes Fiber Optic Cable Installation Project (8/16/04)

Letter from County regarding sale of property in Rolling Hills (8/16/04)

Resolution No. 77-35 and diagram of city boundary at Crest Road