11/13/2001 Planning Commission Agenda November, 2001, 11/13/2001, Planning, Commission, Meeting, Agenda, Class 1 exempts from the preparation of an environmental document projects consisting of any alteration to the existing structure or topography that involves no significant expansion or use beyond that previously existing. Staff made this determination since the site is approved for the development of a single-family residence and the proposed project consists of a minor alteration to the approval, with no significant additional site disturbance, On February 8, 2000, the Planning Commission conditionally approved Variance No. 451, Height Variation No. 885, and Grading Permit No. 2108, to allow the construction of a new 4,292 square foot single family residence, at a height of 26 feet, as measured from the finished grade to the top of the roof ridge line. The approval included a 276 square foot covered patio, which connects the habitable area of the primary residence to the accessory structure, and the reduction of the required fifteen (15) foot rear yard setback to 5’-8", which was a reduction of 9’-4" The 11/13/2001 RPV Planning Commission Meeting Agenda
Rancho Palos Verdes Planning Commission Agenda November 13, 2001
November 13 , 2001

DISCLAIMER

The following Planning Commission agenda includes text only version of the staff reports associated with the business matters to be brought before for the Planning Commission at its Regular Meeting of this date. Changes to the staff reports may be necessary prior to the actual Planning Commission meeting. The Planning Commission may elect to delete or continue business matters at the beginning of the Planning Commission Meeting. Additionally, staff reports attachments, including but not limited to, pictures, plans, drawings, spreadsheet presentations, financial statements and correspondences are not included. The attachments are available for review with the official agenda package at the Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement Department.

...end of disclaimer...

** CLICK HERE FOR PLANNING COMMISSION AGENDA
**CLICK HERE FOR PLANNING COMMISSION AGENDA STAFF REPORTS



This agenda has been prepared for the orderly progression of Planning Commission business.  The Planning Commission is very interested in hearing your comments and encourages your participation in the meeting.  These agenda instructions are intended to familiarize you with how the meeting will be conducted, what to expect and how to most effectively participate in the process.

Staff Reports

Detailed staff reports on the items contained in this agenda are available from the Planning Department the Friday before the meeting and are posted for public viewing immediately prior to the meeting in the hallway outside the chambers.  The Planning, Building and Code Enforcement Department is located at City Hall at 30940 Hawthorne Boulevard, Rancho Palos Verdes.  The Department's public counter hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday and from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday.  The telephone number is (310) 377-6008.

Organization of the Agenda

The Planning Commission agenda is divided into the following sections:

Consent Calendar: This section consists of routine items, which, unless a request has been received from the public, a Commission member or Staff to remove a particular item for discussion, are enacted by one motion of the Planning Commission.
Continued Business:  This section consists of items that were held over from a previous Planning Commission meetings and for which a decision has not yet been made.
Public Hearings: This section is devoted to noticed public hearings which have not been previously heard by the Commission.
New Business: This section is for items that do not require a noticed public hearing.  Pursuant to adopted Planning Commission procedure, the Commission will, except under exceptional circumstances and with the consent of the majority of the Commission, adjourn its meetings on or before 12:00 a.m. and not consider new business items after 11:00 p.m., with any unfinished business being continued to the next regular, adjourned, or special meeting.
Audience Comments: This part of the agenda is reserved for making comments on matters which are NOT on the agenda.  Comments must be limited to matters within the jurisdiction of the Planning Commission.  Due to State law, no action can be taken on matters brought up under Audience Comments.  If action by the Commission is necessary, the matter may be placed on a future agenda, or referred to Staff, as determined by the Commission.

Presentation of Agenda Items

Unless the Chairperson in his or her discretion should direct otherwise, the order of the presentation is generally as follows:

(a) Presentation of staff report, including any environmental analysis or recommendation.
(b) Questions of staff by members of Planning Commission.
(c) Public hearing opened.
(d) Presentation of the applicant(s) or appellant(s).
(e) Presentation of persons in favor of the requested action.
(f) Presentation of persons in opposition to the requested action.
(g) Rebuttal comments by the applicant(s) or appellant(s), if requested.
(h) Closing comments by staff.
(i) Public hearing closed.


How to Speak on an Item

 In order to speak on an item, please completely fill out a Request to Speak form and return it to the recording secretary.  These half-sheet forms (which are printed on colored paper) are available on the table in the hallway outside the chambers or from the recording secretary, who is seated on the left-hand side of the dais (the table with the blue skirt at the front of the meeting room), next to the light timer.  Requests to speak on an item must be submitted to the recording secretary prior to the completion of the remarks of the first speaker on the item.  No request forms to speak on the particular item will be accepted after that time.

 After your name is called by the recording secretary, please approach the lectern and speak clearly into the microphone.  The height of the microphone may be adjusted by hand if necessary.  Before beginning your comments on the item, please state your name and address for the record.

 The length of time that each person is allowed to speak on individual items is determined by the Chairman and is usually based on the number of speakers on the particular item.  Normally, the applicants and appellants are limited to a five (5) minute presentation and a three (3) minute rebuttal (if requested). All other persons are generally limited to three (3) minutes per person. 

 Submittal of Written Correspondence

 You may submit written evidence to the Planning Commission through the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement and request that the Commission receive copies of the submitted materials prior to the meeting.  However, such written evidence must be submitted by 12:00 noon on the Monday prior to the Planning Commission meeting.  If any written evidence is submitted after the Monday noon deadline, the Commission will not consider it at the meeting.  However, it will be distributed as part of the agenda packet for any forthcoming meeting, provided that the item is continued.  This does not prevent you from reading written comments that are submitted late into the record as part of oral comments, in accordance with the time limits discussed above.

Conduct at the Meeting

The Planning Commission has adopted a set of rules for conduct during Planning Commission meetings. Although it is a very rare occurrence, the Chairperson may order from the Planning Commission Chambers any person(s) who commit the following acts with respect to a regular or special meeting of the Planning Commission:

1. Disorderly, contemptuous or insolent behavior toward the Commission or any member thereof, which interrupts the due and orderly course of said meeting.
2. A breach of the peace, boisterous conduct or violent disturbance, which interrupts the due and orderly course of said meeting.
3. Disobedience of any lawful order of the Chairperson which shall include an order to be seated or refrain from addressing the Commission.
4. Any other interference with the due and orderly course of the meeting.

Your cooperation in making the Planning Commission meeting run smoothly and fairly for all participants in greatly appreciated.


BEGINNING OF PLANNING COMMISSION AGENDA



RANCHO PALOS VERDES PLANNING COMMISSION

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2001

FRED HESSE COMMUNITY PARK, 29301 HAWTHORNE BOULEVARD

REGULAR MEETING

7:00 P.M.


SCHEDULING NOTES

REQUESTS TO SPEAK ON AN ITEM MUST BE SUBMITTED TO THE RECORDING SECRETARY PRIOR TO THE COMPLETION OF THE REMARKS OF THE FIRST SPEAKER ON THE ITEM. NO REQUEST FORMS WILL BE ACCEPTED AFTER THAT TIME.

PURSUANT TO ADOPTED PLANNING COMMISSION PROCEDURE, NEW BUSINESS ITEMS NOT HEARD BEFORE ll:00 P.M. WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY CONTINUED AND WILL BE HEARD ON THE NEXT COMMISSION AGENDA.

NEXT P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-41



CALL TO ORDER:

FLAG SALUTE:

ROLL CALL:

APPROVAL OF AGENDA:

COMMUNICATIONS:

Council Policy Items (Excerpt Minutes):

None.

Staff:

Commission:


CONSENT CALENDAR:



1. MINUTES OF OCTOBER 9, 2001


2. MINUTES OF OCTOBER 23, 2001
RECESS/COMMENTS FROM THE AUDIENCE (regarding non-agenda items) at APPROXIMATELY 8:30 P.M.

CONTINUED BUSINESS:

CLOSED SESSION. PLEASE SEE ATTACHED BROWN ACT CHECKLIST FOR DETAILS.


3. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230 and ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NO. 744: Bruce Bartram, Trutanich & Michael and Stephanie Dreckmann, Schmitz & Associates (for James A. Kay, Jr.), 26708 Indian Peak Road. (KF)

Requested Action: Allow an after-the-fact approval to establish existing antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence for commercial use. The existing antennae, support structures and equipment are currently located both inside and outside of the residence. The existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array are currently permitted for non-commercial use only, while the commercial antennae purported to exist inside of the residence are non-permitted. The applicant currently proposes no additional antennae or any change in the height, location or appearance of the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array.

Recommendation: Adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, conditionally approving Conditional Use Permit No. 230.


4. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 226, GRADING PERMIT NO. 2296 and ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NO. 742: Verizon Wireless Services, represented by John Koos at TetraTech Wireless. (ES)

Requested Action: Allow construction of a new 30-foot-tall simulated power pole, to accommodate the placement of 4 panel antennae inside the pole, located to the west (upslope) of the existing Ladera Linda Community Center buildings and east of the existing tennis courts. Further, a 240-square foot, 12-foot high, prefabricated equipment structure is proposed adjacent to the new antenna pole.

Recommendation: Table the item until the application is ready to move forward, at which time a new noticed public hearing date will be established.


PUBLIC HEARINGS:



5. HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 885 – REVISION ‘A’ and VARIANNCE PERMIT NO. 451 REVISION ‘A’: Mr. Mohamad Chahine, (applicant), 5088 Mossbank Drive. (BY)

Requested Action: Allow the enclosure of existing 667 square foot covered patio, at a maximum height of 19.5’, as measured from the finished grade adjacent to the lowest foundation (83.0’) to the top of the ridge (102.5’). The proposed addition is proposed to be setback 11’-0" from the rear property line.

Recommendation: Adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, conditionally approving Height Variation Permit No. 885 Revision "A" and Variance No. 451 Revision "A".


6. GRADING PERMIT NO. 2277: Mr. and Mrs. Jamie Blessum, (applicant), 20 Martingale Drive (BY)

Requested Action: Allow 985 cubic yards of grading, for the construction of a new single-family residence, including 2,304 square feet on the main entrance floor (upper level), 1,897 square feet on the floor below the main entrance level (middle level), 1,761 square feet on the lowest floor level (lower level), a 950 square foot attached garage, and a 582 square foot storage area, for a total structure size of 7,494 square feet. The new single-family residence is proposed at a height of 12.4’, as measured from the average elevation at the setback line (999.00’) to the top of the ridge (1011.40’), and at a height of 29.98’, as measured from the point where the lowest foundation meets finish grade (981.42’).

Recommendation: Remand this application to the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement for review, since the application has been revised to consist of less than 1,000 cubic yards of grading, and no longerrequires Planning Commission review.


7. PLANNING CASE NO. ZON2001-00073: Mr. and Mrs. Gene Price (applicant), 3434 Newridge Drive. (KF)

Requested Action: A request by the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement to rescind Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 for Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, thereby relieving the property owners at 3434 Newridge Drive of the requirement to repair the drainage swale and chain-link fence between their property and the adjacent property at 3417 Starline Drive.

Recommendation: Adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, approving an Amendment to Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’.


NEW BUSINESS:(NO ITEMS)



8. PLANNING CASE NO. ZON2001-00105: Arik Abdalian (applicant), 30025 Cachan Place. (KF)

Requested Action: Amend Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’ to allow an approved 3-foot-tall retaining wall in the northerly side-yard to be increased to five feet nine inches (5’9") in height.

Recommendation: Conditionally Approve an Amendment to Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’, via Minute Order.


ITEMS TO BE PLACED ON FUTURE AGENDAS:


Staff



9. PRE-AGENDA FOR THE MEETING OF NOVEMBER 27, 2001.


Commission


ADJOURNMENT:


The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday,
November 27, 2001, 7:00 P.M. at Hesse Park.


CLOSED SESSION AGENDA CHECKLIST


Based on Government Code Section 54954.5
(All Statutory References are to California Government Code Sections)


CONFERENCE WITH LEGAL COUNSEL


Existing Litigation:
(G.C. 54956.9(a))

Name of Case: Abrams vs. City of Rancho Palos Verdes

Name of Parties: Mark Abrams

Case No.: USDC #CV 00-09071 (svw)

Existing Litigation:
(G.C. 54956.9(a))

Name of Case: People of the State of California vs. James Kay

Name of Parties: James Kay

Case No.: YC 037398



AGENDA

RANCHO PALOS VERDES PLANNING COMMISSION

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2001

FRED HESSE COMMUNITY PARK, 29301 HAWTHORNE BOULEVARD

REGULAR MEETING

7:00 P.M.


SCHEDULING NOTES

REQUESTS TO SPEAK ON AN ITEM MUST BE SUBMITTED TO THE RECORDING SECRETARY PRIOR TO THE COMPLETION OF THE REMARKS OF THE FIRST SPEAKER ON THE ITEM. NO REQUEST FORMS WILL BE ACCEPTED AFTER THAT TIME.

PURSUANT TO ADOPTED PLANNING COMMISSION PROCEDURE, NEW BUSINESS ITEMS NOT HEARD BEFORE ll:00 P.M. WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY CONTINUED AND WILL BE HEARD ON THE NEXT COMMISSION AGENDA.

NEXT P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-41



CALL TO ORDER:

FLAG SALUTE:

ROLL CALL:


APPROVAL OF AGENDA:



COMMUNICATIONS:


Council Policy Items (Excerpt Minutes):

None.

Staff:

Commission:


CONSENT CALENDAR:



1. MINUTES OF OCTOBER 9, 2001


DRAFT

CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES
PLANNING COMMISSION
REGULAR MEETING
OCTOBER 9, 2001

CALL TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order by Chairman Lyon at 7:06 p.m. at the Fred Hesse Community Room, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard.

FLAG SALUTE

Commissioner Mueller led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ATTENDANCE

Present: Commissioners Cartwright, Long, Mueller, Paulson, Vannorsdall, Vice Chairman Clark and Chairman Lyon

Absent: None

Also present were Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement Rojas, Senior Planner Fox, Senior Planner Mihranian, Associate Planner Schonborn, Assistant Planner Yu, Assistant City Attorney Pittman, and Recording Secretary Peterson.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

After a brief discussion the agenda was approved as presented. However, the Commission reserved the right to switch the order of items 7 and 8, if needed, later in the meeting.

COMMUNICATIONS

Director/Secretary Rojas reported that the City Council had approved the General Plan Implementation Report that had been forwarded to them by the Planning Commission. He also reported that the City Council would begin their hearings for the Long Point project on November 7 at Miraleste Middle School. Finally, regarding neighborhood compatibility, he stated that the City Council had directed staff to research the possibility of a code amendment.

Director/Secretary Rojas distributed one item of correspondence relating to Agenda Item No. 5, one item of correspondence for Agenda Item No. 6 and 15 items of correspondence for Agenda Item No. 7.

CONSENT CALENDAR


1. Minutes of September 25, 2001


Commissioner Long asked that the reason for his recusal as noted on page 2 of the minutes be clarified.

Commissioner Cartwright noted typos on page 4 of the minutes.

Vice Chairman Clark noted on page 18 of the minutes that there may be a comment made by Mr. Tippets that was not included in the minutes. He asked that the tape be checked and the comment added. He also noted a typo on page 15 of the minutes.

Chairman Lyon noted two words left out of the motion on page 24 of the minutes.

Vice Chairman Clark asked the first paragraph on page 23 be modified to add "as envisioned by the Vice Chairman in his previous motion".

The minutes were approved as amended, without objection, (7-0).


2. Conditional Use Permit No. 136, Grading Permit No. 1246, and Lot Line Adjustment No. 38: York Long Point Associates, 6610 Palos Verdes Drive South


Commissioner Long began by asking staff what the authority was in the Municipal Code that would allow the Planning Commission to grant an extension for entitlements that have already expired.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman responded that the request for the extension was filed prior to the date of expiration. However, because of the scheduling of the agendas the item was not placed on the agenda before it expired. He stated that as long as the application was received prior to the expiration of the permits then the Planning Commission had the authority to consider the extension request.

Commissioner Mueller asked how many times these permits have been extended.

Director/Secretary Rojas answered that these permits have been extended nine times.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Ann Shaw 30036 Via Borica stated that Destination Resorts does not want the Long Point entitlements, but rather their own plans for the site. She felt the Planning Commission should be accommodating and the Long Point entitlements should not be extended.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Vice Chairman Clark questioned why the landowner would want the extension, particularly in light of a very thorough presentation by Mike Mohler (representing the developer) as to why the current entitlements would not be feasible for the proposed project.

Commissioner Cartwright felt the landowner would be foolish not to request an extension, as the City has not finalized the current request, and may not for some time. He stated that all the request does is keep in place what has already been approved.

Director/Secretary Rojas responded to Commissioner Long’s question regarding the authority in the Municipal Code to grant the extension. He stated that the Conditions of Approval of the Conditional Use Permit established the regulations for the permit expiration. He noted that the Conditions stated that extensions of up to one year may be granted by the Planning Commission if requested prior to expiration.

Commissioner Long was satisfied that there were no limitations on the number of extensions allowed.

Commissioner Long stated that he had hoped the landowner would be present to explain to the Planning Commission the viability of a project that is limited to the Long Point property. He felt that implicit in the application of extension was an acknowledgement that such a project is viable, and he was inclined to agree. He felt that by granting this request the Planning Commission might be saying that they agree that a project restricted to the Long Point property, and not making use of City property, is a viable project, as the owner seems to acknowledge in applying for an extension.

Commissioner Cartwright did not agree with that interpretation.

Chairman Lyon moved to approve the requested one-year extension, thereby setting the expiration date as September 11, 2002, with all conditions of approval remaining in full force and effect, seconded by Commissioner Paulson. Approved, 7-0.

PUBLIC HEARINGS


3. Height Variation No. 936: Mr. and Mrs. Samer Mistry, 758 Birchman Dr.


Assistant Planner Yu presented the staff report. She explained the reason for the height variation application and stated that staff had determined that no views would be impacted by the addition, there was no privacy impaction, and it was compatible with the immediate neighborhood.

Commissioner Paulson moved to adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-33 thereby approving Height Variation Permit No. 936 as presented by staff, seconded by Commissioner Vannorsdall. Approved, (7-0).



4. Conditional Use Permit No. 229, Grading Permit No. 2283, and Environmental Assessment No. 740: Verizon Wireless Services.


Commissioner Long stated that the next two items on the agenda were from Verizon Wireless. He stated that his law firm has either in the past or is currently affiliated with Verizon Wireless, and while he personally is not currently doing work for Verizon Wireless he will, as he has done in the past, recuse himself from the next two items to avoid any appearance of conflict of interest.

Associate Planner Schonborn presented the staff report. He explained that the request was to replace the existing flagpole with a new similarly designed flagpole at the same location. He stated the height of the proposed flag pole was 10 feet higher than what was now existing, thereby maintaining an overall height of 45 feet. He stated that all findings could be made for the three applications and there would be no significant adverse affects on adjacent properties. He explained that staff found the proposal is consistent with the Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines, and therefore staff recommends the Planning Commission certify the Mitigated Negative Declaration and approve the Conditional Use Permit and Grading Permit, subject to conditions.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Lorena Martinez representing Verizon Wireless stated she was available to answer any questions.

Commissioner Mueller asked if there were any alternatives looked at as far as the location of the proposed pole.

Ms. Martinez responded that other sites were considered, however the proposed location offered optimum coverage.

Commissioner Mueller asked about the proposed height and if the pole actually had to be that high.

Ms. Martinez answered that the radio frequency engineers had stated that 45 feet was the height that offered coverage in the area.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Mueller clarified his concerns. He stated in a community such as this that is concerned with preserving views, large poles such as the one proposed should be avoided and hoped that other options had been considered. He wondered if other options might not have been considered because they were not as good at providing reception as this option.

Chairman Lyon felt this was replacing an existing flag pole with a new flag pole that happens to have some antenna panels mounted inside of it that are not visible.

Commissioner Cartwright moved to adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-34 thereby certifying the Mitigated Negative Declaration and adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-35 thereby approving Conditional Use Permit No. 229 and Grading Permit No. 2283 as presented by staff, seconded by Commissioner Vannorsdall. Approved, (5-1) with Commissioner Mueller dissenting and Commissioner Long recused.



5. Conditional Use Permit No. 226, Grading Permit No. 2296 and Environmental Assessment No. 742: Verizon Wireless Service


Associate Planner Schonborn presented the staff report. He explained the proposal. He noted that staff had determined through the initial study process that there are potentially significant impacts to the aesthetic environment that cannot be mitigated with the project. He explained that this was due, in part, to the location at the top of the slope, the close proximity to adjacent homes, and the open space nature of the Forrestal property. Regarding the Conditional Use Permit, he explained that based upon visual and aesthetic impacts, staff determined the site is not adequate in size and configuration to accommodate the proposed use. Staff believes that in approving the subject use there will be significant adverse affects on adjacent properties with regards to affecting a scenic vista from the Stalwart Trail along Forrestal Drive. He also explained that staff believed the proposed use was contrary to the General Plan, the facility will not blend with the surrounding environment, that the visual impacts will be significant due to the fact that this is a new pole at a site that currently does not have any poles. Further, staff does not believe the project is consistent with the Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines, specifically it does not preserve view corridors and there is an imbalance of public and private costs and benefits where there will be a greater cost to the public and a greater benefit to the applicant. Therefore, staff recommends denial of the project.

Vice Chairman Clark noted in the staff report that staff believes there may be other alternative methods. He asked if staff discussed any alternative methods with the applicant to accomplish their purpose.

Associate Planner Schonborn stated that there were discussions in regards to alternative sites and types of uses, however this proposal was the most preferable to the applicant.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

John Koos 357 Van Ness Way, Torrance (representing Verizon) gave a brief history of the proposal. He felt this design blended nicely with the site, especially since the antennas would be located inside the pole. He stated that the engineers had felt that the objectives of the antennas could be reached at a height of 30 feet, but not at a lower height. He explained that Verizon had looked into locating on existing telephone poles, but determined that these poles were too low. He stated he was available for any questions or suggestions.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if any other locations in the area had been considered or if Verizon had considered co-location in the area with other services.

Mr. Koos answered that other locations had been considered on the property, however they were not as desirable. As far as co-location, he was not sure where the other companies were located in the area.

Vice Chairman Clark was concerned that Mr. Koos did not know where the other providers had their locations in the area, which implies that he had not analyzed whether or not co-locations meet Verizon objectives.

Don Richardson 32206 Helm Place stated that he did not think the proposed pole blended in with the area at all. He noted that the staff report clearly indicates there is an aesthetic impact that cannot be mitigated, and he agreed. He stated that he lives in an area that spent quite a bit of money to underground their utilities and did not think this type of pole belonged in the area.

Commissioner Cartwright understood Mr. Richardson’s objection to a pole of this height overlooking his backyard. He asked if he would object to a pine tree or something else that would completely disguise the antenna.

Mr. Richardson answered that a "stealth" installation would be somewhat less objectionable. However he felt that thirty feet high was very tall and he would have to look at what was proposed.

Charles Agnew 32261 Phantom Drive stated he looked down on the school site and proposed antenna. He objected to the proposed antenna and noted that it was right on a ridgeline. He stated that he may not be opposed to hiding the antenna if it were in the right location, however the proposed power pole was not compatible with the neighborhood. He stated that he understood what Verizon was aiming for and he understood their need, but felt there had to be a better way to accomplish their goals.

Diane Weinberger 4206 Exultant Drive stated she was the president of the Seaview Residents Association. She began by stating she was not notified of the hearings for this project and stated that it was her understanding that as president of an HOA she should be notified of the project. She stated she had a list of eight residents who were opposed to the project. She requested the tower, as planned, be rejected by the Planning Commission. She stated that the residents have worked very hard to beautify their subdivision and this proposal was an eyesore.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Paulson felt that, after hearing from the applicant and the residents, there was a potential for a project that would meet everyone’s needs. He stated he would be hesitant to support any motion that would deny the project, but he also could not support a motion to approve it. He felt the applicant, staff, and residents should get together and discuss some of the alternatives based on design, location, and other items of concern.

Commissioner Cartwright agreed and suggested the item be continued to a date after the parties involved have had a chance to discuss the project.

Commissioner Vannorsdall felt the proposed location of the project was very important and encouraged the applicant to find some way to better camouflage the tower.

Commissioner Mueller stated it was important to remember that the City was most likely the beneficiary of this particular antenna location. He felt that because the neighborhood had spent their money to underground the utilities the City should make every effort to find a better location for the project. He suggested going with staff’s alternative one or denying the application without prejudice to allow the applicant to continue to work and come back with a modified plan.

Vice Chairman Clark agreed that the project needed to be re-worked and felt the applicant should work with the staff and the neighbors to see what potential win-win solution could be found. He felt that co-location opportunities with other wireless users should be explored.

Chairman Lyon agreed with the Commission and felt there was a lot of room for discussion and negotiation between the applicant, staff, and neighbors.

Commissioner Paulson moved to continue the application to the November 13, 2001 meeting, seconded by Commissioner Cartwright. Approved, (6-0) with Commissioner Long recused.

RECESS AND RECONVENE

At 8:40 p.m. the Commission took a short recess to 8:55 p.m. at which time they reconvened.

COMMENTS FROM THE AUDIENCE (REGARDING NON-AGENDA ITEMS)

Lois Larue 3136 Barkentine Road stated that the Chairman of the Planning Commission had told her that he thought public speakers were important, however he did not allow public speakers during an earlier agenda item. She also did not think that the Chairman should make motions. She also questioned the cones in the parking lot and asked what they were for.

Commissioner Long explained that the orange cones in the parking lot were to reserve parking spaces for Commissioners who, if they arrive late, don’t have to carry boxes of information for a long distance. He expressed the view that the Chairman had followed all applicable rules and assured Ms. Larue that if he ever felt the Chairman wasn’t following established rules he would let everyone know.

Commissioner Paulson discussed public comments and stated that during the earlier agenda item the Chairman asked if there were any speakers for the item. There being no speaker slips submitted, the Chairman did not call for public speakers.

PUBLIC HEARINGS (CONT)


6. Grading Permit NO. 2191: Mr. and Mrs. Henru Wiredja, 3815 Palos Verdes Drive South


Senior Planner Mihranian presented the staff report. He explained the project and stated that the proposed height of the project was within the development code requirements for an upslope lot. He stated that in reviewing the proposed residence staff identified concerns with respect to view impacts with neighboring properties on Sea Raven Drive as well as aesthetic impacts on Palos Verdes Drives South. However, staff felt these impacts, with appropriate conditions, may be reduced to a level of insignificance. He explained that the city geologist has given the project conceptual approval, however, requiring further review at the Building and Safety stage.

Commissioner Vannorsdall asked why the project did not have a silhouette.

Senior Planner Mihranian replied that the flagging was only required for a height variation application. He stated that this is a sloping lot and by right the height limit is 16 feet from the highest point and 30 feet from the lowest point covered by the structure and therefore a height variation application was not required.

Commissioner Vannorsdall asked about the driveway and what street that driveway would be on.

Senior Planner Mihranian stated that currently the driveway is located off Palos Verdes Drive South, however the City plans to extend Aqua Vista Drive. The driveway will then be located off Aqua Vista Drive.

Larry Peha 67 14th Street, Hermosa Beach, stated he was the architect for the project. He stated that he has been working on the project for quite some time with staff and has made quite a few adjustments. He noted that he has moved the residence approximately 30 feet lower on the lot, adjusted the elevations, and substantially reduced the size of the structure. He stated that the ridge of the proposed structure is 25 feet below the top of the property on Searaven Drive. He felt this resulted in no view impacts from the neighbors above. He stated he agreed with all of the conditions in the staff report except for the flat roof in the living room entry area. He did not think the architectural feature had any impact that would not change with a sloped roof.

Vice Chairman Clark asked why Mr. Peha felt the entry area should have a flat roof.

Mr. Peha answered that there is a commanding view at that point and they would like to have a little higher ceiling in that area.

Commissioner Paulson asked Mr. Peha if he had any discussions with the neighbors during the development of the project.

Mr. Peha responded that he had not.

Elaine Motz 32413 Searaven Drive stated that the unstable portion of the subject lot was of great concern to her. She stated that the applicant has relocated the house to avoid the unstable portion of the lot. She did not feel it was wise to relocate the house behind the unstable portion. She was concerned that heavy equipment would further destabilize the lot. Until stability is established, she felt all other matters should be held in abeyance.

Commissioner Cartwright asked staff if the instability was due to fill.

Senior Planner Mihranian stated that the staff report incorrectly used the word "unstable" to describe the lower portion of the lot that contained uncompacted fill. Furthermore, staff stated that the geology reports indicated that because there is uncompacted fill on a section of the property in order to build a structure on that section of the lot, it would require an extensive caisson foundation system.

Commissioner Cartwright clarified that there was not instability on the lot, but rather quite a bit of fill of the one section. Therefore, the applicant proposed to move the structure further back where it would be more cost effective to build.

George Fink 32353 Searaven Drive was concerned about the driveway of the new home. He felt there could be a dangerous situation at the site. He stated that according to the staff report his pad was at 395 feet, per the applicant. He noted that conditions in the staff report are based on the 395-foot elevation. He asked what the true elevation of his pad was and if it was not 395 feet, he requested the conditions be changed to reflect the actual elevation of his pad. He noted that the staff report states that vegetation foliage may not exceed 395 feet. He requested the language be changed to say the foliage and vegetation may not exceed 16 feet in height or an elevation height of 390 feet, whichever is the lowest. He stated this would provide the protection that was intended. He asked if irrigation of the landscaping of the new residence would likely cause instability of the slope.

Commissioner Paulson asked for clarification regarding the foliage on the proposed project.

Senior Planner Mihranian stated that the condition reads the applicant is required to submit a landscape plan and the foliage shall not exceed 16 feet in height or a maximum elevation height of 395 feet, whichever is more restrictive. He stated that Mr. Fink was asking that the condition be changed to whichever is lower, which staff could change.

Commissioner Paulson asked about the fencing along the rear property line.

Senior Planner Mihranian stated that when staff was analyzing the height of the structure and looking at the building pad elevations along Searaven Drive, Mr. Fink’s property is the lowest, at an approximately elevation of 398 feet. He stated that is a safe condition since it is actually lower than the contour elevation on the applicant’s property.

Chairman Lyon asked how the pad elevation of Mr. Fink’s property was determined to be 395 feet in elevation.

Senior Planner Mihranian stated that a land surveyor determined the elevation, as indicated on the surveyed site plan.

David Campana 32405 Searaven Drive stated he has a magnificent view from his property. He was concerned that he maintains that view and was very happy to hear that the fence line of the proposed property was below his pad. He was concerned that the foliage requirements be included in the conditions of approval. He noted that there are no fences in the neighborhood and a fence would destroy the views of the ocean. He stated that he was supportive of the proposed project and hoped things would go well.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Chairman Lyon asked if the geology report clearly indicated that the proposed house can and will be built on bedrock.

Senior Planner Mihranian answered that the city geologist has reviewed numerous reports for the property and conceptually approved the project in August. He explained that this was a conceptual approval and further reports will be submitted for approval prior to the issuance of building and grading permits.

Commissioner Cartwright moved to adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-36 with the modifications noted to the elevation, fencing, and vegetation as suggested by the speaker, seconded by Commissioner Paulson. Approved, (7-0).

At this point, Commissioner Long felt it was a good time to re-examine the Agenda. He felt that if agenda item no. 7 were heard before the Long Point item, he was concerned that Long Point would not be heard until very late. He did not think this was in the best interest of the Commission or the City to begin the discussion of Long Point at such a late hour. He recommended either putting item no. 8 in advance of item no. 7 or continue Long Point to another date, sufficiently in advance of the anticipated time the City Council has set for hearing Long Point.

Chairman Lyon polled the audience to see how many speakers there were for agenda item no. 7. He felt there was a significant number, and wanted to be sure that the Planning Commission listened carefully to all of their concerns.

Commissioner Paulson stated that he could not vote one way or the other on this project tonight. He felt that he needed to see the parcel flagged and asked if there were a way to continue the item and request the parcel be flagged.

Director/Secretary Rojas stated that could be done. He also felt that the flagging issue and another matter that staff wished to discuss could be addressed without having to open the public hearing and the item could be continued to a future date.

Commissioner Vannorsdall agreed that he could not possibly make a decision until the flagging was in place and that the item should be continued until the flagging was done

Vice Chairman Clark agreed that the item should be continued, however he felt that the residents who have come to the meeting and waited to speak should be given the chance to speak at this meeting.

Chairman Lyon agreed that the flagging was necessary. He felt there were other issues that needed to be addressed and suggested the applicant work with the concerned neighbors to understand and identify and alleviate any of these concerns.

Commissioner Cartwright noted that the entire project did not need to be silhouetted. He felt the Commission and the neighbors were mostly concerned about the ridgeline.

Director/Secretary Rojas stated that staff would like to address a flurry of late letter writing regarding condition no. 8, which required that a portion of the property be dedicated for public access. He stated that it was staff’s intention to delete this condition, and hoped this would address many of the comments that would have been directed to the Planning Commission.

Vice Chairman Clark recommended polling the audience to see how many people wished to speak tonight, or hearing the discussion of the Planning Commission, would be willing to wait and have the item continued.

Chairman Lyon stated that it was clear the Planning Commission could not and would not make a decision at this meeting regarding this issue. He stated that the Commission needed to see an outline of the ridgeline of the house. He explained that once the Commission has seen this ridgeline they could more rationally address whether or not there was a view issue from each of the residences. He polled the audience and noted a number of people wishing to speak at this meeting on agenda item no. 7.

Commissioner Cartwright stated that he had spent a lot of time reading and studying the material for the Long Point project and he did not want to continue that item to another meeting. He felt that Long Point should be heard and resolved at this meeting.

Commissioner Cartwright moved to suspend the Planning Commission rules to continue beyond 11:00 p.m. in order to hear agenda item no. 8, Long Point, seconded by Commissioner Paulson.

Commissioner Long was concerned that every time the Planning Commission reached an important discussion regarding Long Point it has been very late in the evening. He urged the Planning Commission to consider why they would vote for this motion now. He felt that the most important part of the Long Point decision was before the Planning Commission and they needed to get the conditions of approval right, and he was concerned that this could not happen if the decisions were made very late in the evening.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman stated that since item no. 7 was a publicly noticed item the Planning Commission was legally obligated to open the public hearing. He stated that the Commission could offer those speakers who are here and could not come back to the next meeting and wished to speak to do so, and request that those who are able to come to the next meeting hold their comments to that time.

On a roll call vote of 4-3 the motion passed, with Commissioners Long, Mueller, and Vice Chairman Clark dissenting.



7. Coastal Permit No. 170, Grading Permit No. 2260, Coastal Permit No. 172, and Grading Permit No. 2281: Eric Johnson, 2 Yacht Harbor Drive


Senior Planner Fox presented the staff report. He stated that all residential development on the site would occur outside the landslide moratorium area. He stated that there were two findings necessary for a Coastal Permit, and staff found that these findings could be found. He explained that staff has assessed the likely impacts of the project upon public views, and believe the impairment will not be significant. He also stated that the Coastal Plan is that the project is consistent with applicable public access and recreation policies of the Coastal Act. However, since the Portuguese Bend Community is a private community and does not provide public access to coastal resources, the approval of the project has no affect on existing coastal access. Further, there is adequate existing coastal access nearby at Ocean Trails and Abalone Cove Park. He discussed the grading applications and noted there are nine findings required to be made. He stated that staff has found that all nine findings could be made for the project. He discussed the scale of the proposed residence, and while clearly much larger than the 10 nearest homes in the Portuguese Bend Club and Seaview Community, however considering the significantly larger lot size of the proposed project, the scale of the proposed house is in proportion to its lot as he homes in the surrounding neighborhood. He stated that there had been a number of letters received regarding the project and the issues of concerns raised in the letters was the size of the house relative to the surrounding homes, the height of the structure, impairment of private views and the economic impact of impairment views on property values, damage to nearby homes during construction, impacts upon land movement in the adjacent landslide moratorium area, and the affects of headlights from vehicles on the realigned portion of the street.

Commissioner Long asked how many other neighborhood compatibility analyses have been done that include the structure-to-lot ratio analysis.

Senior Planner Fox stated that he has done two or three others. He stated that this was done to show a meaningful comparison of developed lots.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing for the purpose of hearing those individuals who cannot appear at the October 23 meeting.

Commissioner Paulson and Vice Chairman Clark both felt that anyone who wanted to speak should speak, and the Commission agreed.

Eric Johnson (applicant) 92 Yacht Harbor Drive acknowledged that there were those who were concerned with the impact of the proposed project. He felt that once they view the project on an impact standpoint, they will find the project has much less of an impact than the previously approved Transamerica subdivision. He stated that he has worked very hard to situate the structures on the property to minimize the impacts to surrounding properties. He addressed the height of the structures, which are proposed at a maximum elevation of 230 feet, which is lower than the previous development proposal approved for the site. He also noted that his proposal was 11,000 square feet of structure above grade as opposed to the previously approved 70,000 square feet of structure above grade. He stated that the grading quantities for the project were significantly less than those of the previously approved project and only 2,000 cubic yards would be exported as opposed to 21,000 in the prior approved plan. He stated he was a professional scientist and geologist and it was very important to him to understand the stability of the area he was building on. He was very confident that the area was safe to build on. He stated that he has worked very hard to design a project that was well within his rights to build. He noted that there were no variances or height variations required. He stated that he would continue to work with the community to make sure that everyone appreciates how good of an outcome for this site the proposed project will be. He stated that he would begin flagging the ridgeline immediately.

Commissioner Paulson asked Mr. Johnson if his definition of "community" included not only Portuguese Bend but the houses across the street along Palos Verdes Drive South.

Mr. Johnson agreed.

Jill Carlton 4265 Palos Verdes Drive South felt the look of the house was very lovely, but was concerned with the affect of the road realignment. She stated that the applicant has stated he does not require a Variance and is building what he can by right. She questioned this statement. She stated that if the project were being permitted without the road realignment, the ridgeline height would be at 230 elevation, which is in excess of the code and therefore subject to a height variation. She felt the project should be treated as a height variation with all of the proper procedures or the height of the project should be lowered to comply with the height variation guidelines. She felt that a road relocation that effectively gives the applicant additional height leeway at the detriment of her possible view should not be allowed without proper consideration. She felt that approving the road realignment prior to silhouetting and approving the project itself would be allowing the project to be approved under less stringent rules and public scrutiny. She stated that if the project were approved at 226 elevation she would have no further objection to the project, as it would be equal to the ridge height approved for the Transamerica project and less of an impact on the view on the view corridor.

Commissioner Long asked staff to respond to the comments of the last speaker at the next meeting. He felt these comments could be important as to whether or not the Commission can go forward on the project on the assumption it does not need a height variation. He was very interested on the City Attorney’s views on how the road realignment and the height variation interrelated.

Jack Jones 4225 Palos Verdes Drive South stated that he learned from the Transamerica hearings that however is going to develop the property must work with the community, which is more than the Portuguese Bend Beach Club. He explained that the applicant had invited the neighborhood to his home to explain the project, however all he could determine at the time was that this was a huge and beautiful development. He was not able to come to any conclusion as to what the impact would be on his views. He felt sure, however, that it would have a severe impact on his view. He was pleased the Planning Commission requested some flagging on the property and encouraged the Commission to consider the realignment of the road together with development of the home. He acknowledged that Mr. Johnson should be able to develop his property to his liking, and he should be able to do so within reason.

Deborah Huff 4245 Palos Verdes Drive South also had concerns about the views and felt it was important to work through any legal issues regarding the height variation and the road realignment. She stated she was very pleased to have the Johnsons in the neighborhood but felt she had to express her concerns as a homeowner, which was the possible loss of her view.

Diane Weinberger 4206 Exultant Drive stated she was not notified about this project and felt she should have been as she was the president of the Seaview HOA. She stated that she had just read the staff report and disagreed with some things and found some discrepancies and inconsistencies. She stated she would put her concerns in a letter to the Planning Commission which she would do before the next meeting. She felt it was important to have the applicant flag the ridgeline but added that the City should still have the capability to flag the house if necessary.

William McLaughlin 4157 Maritime Road stated he was very happy with the proposal and felt the applicant had listened to and accepted a lot of community input. He noted that Transamerica had planned 15 houses for the area, where Mr. Johnson was proposing only one. He was concerned that if the proposal was rejected there was nothing stopping Mr. Johnson from selling the property to a developer.

Steve Stewart 4164 Maritime Road stated he too was happy to have a single family dwelling on the property rather than multiple homes that would impact the open space, wildlife, and natural habitat. He felt the project was pleasing to the eye and was happy that the applicant had worked so closely with the neighbors.

Lenee Bilski 4255 Palos Verdes Drive South distributed photographs to the Commissioners. She discussed the road and felt the road was proposed to be relocated rather than realigned. She stated that this would change the measurements in the plan as the structural height was based on the new road location. She felt that the two-degree viewing arc was measured from her property. She felt that either the two-degree arc should be measured from 220-foot elevation of Palos Verdes Drive South or the height variation should be applied to the project. Regarding geology, she asked if a construction bond could be issued which would allow the houses in the Seaview area to be protected or insured by the applicant or his agent in case of any earth movement. Finally, she commended the Commission on their request for a silhouette at the property.

William Silverthorn 93 Yacht Harbor Drive noted that the applicant could build a house up to 16 feet in height by right however the proposal was 12 feet in height. Furthermore, by moving the road the applicant was moving the house farther away from Palos Verdes Drive South, giving another 4 feet of view. He didn’t think there was a more welcome design that could be put on the property which has all of the neighbors’ views in mind.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Paulson moved to continue the hearing to the meeting of October 26, 2001 with the direction that the applicant flag the ridgeline of the proposed project, the proposal of the road realignment and the new home be considered jointly at the next meeting, and the staff address the points raised by the public, seconded by Chairman Lyon. Approved, (7-0).

RECESS AND RECONVENE

At 11:00 p.m. the Commission took a short recess to 11:10 p.m. at which time they reconvened.

CONTINUED BUSINESS


8. Long Point Resort: Consisting of Coastal Permit No. 166, General Plan Amendment No. 28, Conditional Use Permit No. 215, Conditional Use Permit No. 216, Parcel Map No. 26073, Grading Permit No. 2229, Grading Permit No. 2230 and the associated Final Environmental Impact Report: Destination Resorts (applicant) 6610 Palos Verdes Drive South and 30940 Hawthorne Boulevard.


Chairman Lyon suggested addressing the three issues for Long Point in turn: first the EIR Resolution, followed by the Conditions of Approval for the resort hotel area, finally the Conditions of Approval for the Upper Point Vicente area.

Senior Planner Mihranian presented a brief staff report. He reviewed the Resolutions with the attached Exhibits. Regarding the Resolution for the Upper Point Vicente area, he noted that the Resolution will be amended to eliminate the trail segment between hole 2 and the Coast Guard property. He stated that, while not specifically mentioned in the motion, it was staff’s understanding that the lookout pavilion along the trail will also be eliminated. Mr. Mihranian addressed the traffic section of the Conditions of Approval and noted a correction pertaining to page 11, condition no. 75 for the resort hotel area as well as page 9, condition no. 63 for the Upper Point Vicente area. He stated it should read: "the west leg with one left turn lane, one shared left and through lane, and one right turn lane." He concluded by stating that the contents of the Resolutions were based entirely on the project findings that were previously reviewed by the Commission and an action on each Resolution must be made in order to forward the proposed project to the City Council.

Commissioner Long referred to the draft resolution for the EIR on page 4 of 7, section 4, and asked staff for an explanation for where the reference is to guideline section 15084 (e) and what the general provisions of that section are.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman quoted the section to the Commission.

Chairman Lyon suggested each Commissioner express, in turn, any concerns they had with the EIR.

Commissioner Paulson asked for clarification regarding the fencing. He stated that the EIR discussed no fencing being allowed but also discussed fencing being provided around certain areas to provide mitigating measures.

Senior Planner Mihranian stated that low fencing (6 to 8 feet in height) would be allowed along the golf course to ensure public safety.

Commissioner Paulson asked if those fences would block the movement of the wild animals in the area from moving from one location to another.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman stated that there was a specific requirement that the fencing along the habitat areas be of a split rail nature, or something similar, to provide pass-through for the wildlife.

Commissioner Cartwright, Chairman Lyon, Vice Chairman Clark, and Commissioner Vannorsdall had no comments regarding the EIR.

Commissioner Long referred to page 5 of the draft resolution. He did not believe the Commission could or should make the findings set forth in sections 6 or 7. Regarding section 10 of the resolution, he felt the finding suggested an implicit endorsement of the use of public land for the project. Therefore, he could not agree with finding no. 10.

Regarding Exhibit A, Commissioner Long noted on page 9, wildlife movement. He felt the project would result in fragmented habitat that was less useful. On page 28, F3, he disagreed with the statement that the recreational uses proposed by the project were generally consistent with the Program of Utilization. He disagreed with the statement that proposed recreational facilities would be designated for public use. He also disagreed with the statement that this will be consistent with the deed requirements that Upper Point Vicente be used and maintained for public purposes. He felt the project was making as much use of the land for private purposes as public. He referred to page 28, item 1, which stated that an amendment to the program of utilization shall be prepared. He felt that should come before the approval of the project.

Commissioner Long next referred to page 46 which discussed the various alternatives analyzed by the Final Environmental Impact Report. He stated that those alternatives did not include any serious analysis of the alternative the Vice Chairman suggested, which was that the project proceed in a manner that would have some relationship with Ocean Trails and not make use of a subsidy of public land. He stated that the alternate use of other property owned by the current owner of Long Point was also seriously not considered, as well as the possibility of reduced hotel taxes as an alternate public subsidy was not considered.

Commissioner Long discussed page 47, the reasons for rejecting the no project alternative. He referred to the last sentence and stated he disagreed with it. On page 52 he noted a statement which said the existing entitlements on the Long Point property were not considered viable. He stated that in the very evening the Planning Commission approved the extension of the existing entitlements, the Commission was also finding the existing entitlements were not considered viable.

Commissioner Long stated that these were his concerns certifying the EIR strictly from the draft resolution and findings, however he had questions concerning the actual EIR, which he understood the Chairman was not inviting the Commission to submit those questions to staff at this time.

Commissioner Mueller agreed with the questions raised by Commissioner Long and added that on pages 36 and 37 there was a lot of discussion on public service and utilities. He stated there was no mention of water consumption, which he felt should be included. On page 40 he asked why the EIR did not address the glare issue when discussing the parking. He discussed page 45 and objected to the statement in the project alternatives which stated the Planning Commission finds that specific economic, social, and other considerations make infeasible each of the project alternatives identified. He did not think economic considerations should be included, particularly since the Commission had never reviewed any report from the Finance Committee. He noted on page 50, the word "infeasible" which he felt could be softened to say "less desirable". He did not think some of the options were completely infeasible. He also did not think the wording in the first sentence on page 52 was appropriate and should state the property was undeveloped and natural rather than under developed and dilapidated.

Commissioner Vannorsdall moved to forward a recommendation to the City Council to certify the Environmental Impact Report, seconded by Commissioner Cartwright.

Commissioner Long stated that he had comments on Exhibit B which he had not made previously. On page 2, he objected to the statement that additional revenue to the City would come from concessions for the use of Upper Point Vicente. He stated that, in the absence of any report from the Finance Committee, there was no evidence to support that statement and it was purely speculative. On page 4 he read the sentence at the top of the page, stating that any one and each of the forgoing benefits constitutes a significant consideration sufficient to approve the project. He asked the Commission if, in reviewing the bullet points on pages 3 and 4 of the findings, if any one of those alone was enough.

Chairman Lyon suggested wording to replace the "any one and each" that states the Planning Commission specifically finds that the forgoing benefits constitute significant consideration sufficient to approve.

Commissioner Paulson suggested striking the "quality" in the statement "quality golf".

The motion passed, (4-3) with Commissioners Long, Mueller and Vice Chairman Clark dissenting.

Chairman Lyon then addressed the conditions of approval for the resort hotel area, which includes Exhibit A through a resolution. He noted that the resolution merely states all of the findings that the Planning Commission has already approved, therefore the Planning Commission should focus on the conditions of approval.

Commissioner Long agreed, and added that while some Commissioners may not be able to make the necessary findings they may have comments on the conditions of approval that the rest of the Commission may find useful.

Commissioner Paulson noted on page 14, regarding the resort villas. He was concerned that the height restriction that the villas cannot exceed the height of Palos Verdes Drive South was not included in the conditions. He noted a typo on page 22, condition no.158.

Chairman Lyon commented that on page 2 it would be better to put item no. H before item no. C. He stated that item H addresses the development of the area formerly known as hole no. 5 and item no. C addresses the maintenance and financial responsibility for those improvements. He also suggested adding a phrase to the end of no. H to say "to the satisfaction of the City Council." He also suggested adding another item to no. F that addresses the equitable allocation of tee times available for the public and hotel guests.

Vice Chairman Clark stated that there was a component missing in the assumption that this project was using City land, which was the ability to form a Rancho Palos Verdes men’s and women’s golf club open to residents of Rancho Palos Verdes who will have priority.

Chairman Lyon referred to page 16 item no. 105. He suggested inserting "or practice facility" in the phrase "no safety netting for the golf course shall be permitted." He noted a typo in item no. 104.

Vice Chairman Clark referred to condition no. 35 which discusses specific structure sizes on the Long Point property. He asked why the condition stated that the structures substantially comply.

Director/Secretary Rojas stated that buildings typically deviate slightly and is rare that the size would come in at exactly 20,000 square feet. He suggested clarifying the condition to state that the building shall not exceed 20,000 square feet.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman stated that the reason the condition is worded this was because when actual construction plans are drawn up, the dimensions and square footages change slightly. He stated that staff was working off plans that are predominately elevations and floor plans. He explained that sometimes when construction plans are finalized the square footages will shrink.

Vice Chairman Clark asked what "substantially complies with" means.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman answered that "substantially complies with" means within a reasonable amount. He stated that if the conditions state 20,000 square feet and the plans show 30,000 square feet that would be an issue for the Planning Commission or City Council to discuss.

Commissioner Vannorsdall noted that "substantially complies with" was less restrictive than cannot exceed.

The Commission agreed.

Commissioner Long referred to page 2, 8b. He suggested it be re-written as follows: "A guarantee of minimum revenue generation as projected by the applicant, and a guarantee of all of the applicant’s financial obligations under the development agreement in a form and amount acceptable to the City Council, preferably an irrevocable letter of credit which will be provided to the City prior to the issuance of building permits."

Commissioner Paulson agreed with this change.

Commissioner Long did not think an insurance provision should substitute for indemnity provisions. He felt very strongly that adequate indemnity provisions be included. He stated that the indemnity should provide that the City enter into an indemnity agreement with an entity that has net worth.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman suggested adding to condition 8 another paragraph that includes specific language that an indemnity agreement shall be part of the development and/or concession agreement.

Commissioner Long discussed condition 19 and suggested the City require adequate insurance for the operation of the golf course with the City being named as additional insured. He felt there should be adequate insurance to cover the resort operation in general and did not feel that $5 million in limits was adequate. He felt that the limits should apply separately to the site. He suggested the city staff and city attorney review and approve the form of the policy, and not merely the certificate of insurance.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman stated that most of Commissioner Long’s concerns are addressed in the City’s standard requirements for insurance and asked if it would suffice if a provision were inserted stating any insurance policy shall comply with all standard requirements of insurance as determined by the risk manager.

Commissioner Long felt that would satisfy his concerns. He then discussed combined pedestrian/bike paths and reiterated that he felt those types of paths were undesirable.

Mueller discussed page 16 and the conditions regarding fences. He asked that a condition be added addressing fencing along Palos Verdes Drive South. He suggested any fencing along Palos Verdes Drive South be modeled after the fencing that was installed in front of Oceanfront Estates on Palos Verdes Drive West.

Commissioner Cartwright felt that the requirement should only be on the ocean side of the street, as that would tie the properties together.

Assistant City Attorney asked for clarification in the matter of the joint trails. He asked if there were any changes proposed regarding that issue.

Chairman Lyon answered that there were no changes regarding joint trails.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman asked about the insurance issues. He suggested increasing the limits of the grading insurance and also suggested dealing with the insurance and indemnity issues together as part of the development agreement for the overall project, and the concession agreement, with respect to use of public property.

Commissioner Long stated what his point was that somewhere the City had to express the concept that if the developer is going to operate a public golf course with public easements and partially on public land, the City had some potential liability and the developer should provide insurance that meets the City standard requirements, have adequate limits, have limits that apply separately to the site, name the city as an additional insured, insurance is primary as the City’s insurance, insurance has low deductible and other terms and provisions adequate to the City’s risk manager, City Council, and the city attorney with the form of the policy and additional insured endorsement being reviewed by all concerned.

Commissioner Paulson suggested Commissioner Long review the wording for the insurance requirements prior to formalizing the resolution to the City Council.

Commissioner Long agreed to review the language to ensure the spirit of what the Planning Commission said was included with respect to the insurance requirements.

Chairman Lyon moved to approve the resolution and conditions of approval for the Long Point site as amended by everything said, other than the combined pedestrian/bike trail, seconded by Commissioner Cartwright. Approved, (5-2) with Commissioners Long and Mueller dissenting.

Chairman Long clarified that his no vote was made solely because he did not feel he could make the finding the resolution requires him to make on page 4 of 18, where the resolution incorporates findings regarding the Environmental Impact Report. In all other respects he was satisfied that the resolution was suitable.

Chairman Lyon noted that the next item to discuss was the resolution for the General Plan amendment, which was fairly straightforward.

Chairman Lyon moved to adopt the Resolution regarding General Plan Amendment No. 28 and forward the recommendation to the City Council, seconded by Commissioner Paulson. Approved, (4-3) with Commissioners Long, Mueller, and Vice Chairman Clark dissenting.

Chairman Lyon next discussed the conditions of approval for the Upper Point Vicente area and again noted that the resolution contained language that was discussed at the previous meeting. He began the discussion by referring to page 14, item 106. He suggested adding grading to the requirements, so the statement would read "The developer shall grade, landscape, and irrigate the area formerly known as hole no. 5."

Commissioner Long felt it was ambiguous to refer to the area as "the area formerly known as hole no. 5." He suggested attaching a map that defines the area referred to as former hole no. 5.

Assistant City Attorney Pittman suggested taking the plan from September 6 and incorporating it as an attachment that identifies the areas on the plan that were being discussed.

Commissioner Long had a comment on item no. 41 on page 6. He suggested adding a statement that to the extent there are any drainage grates in the bikeways, the drainage grates shall be placed in a manner that is perpendicular rather than parallel to the direction of traffic.

Vice Chairman Clark noted that condition no. 42, regarding the cart and pedestrian paths, should state specifically that golf cart paths shall be curbed so that golf carts do not drive onto the pedestrian paths. He also referred to condition no. 25 and asked why July 4th was specifically singled out for requiring that the entire golf course be closed down.

Commissioner Paulson asked if condition 25 was necessary because of condition no. 26. He felt condition no. 26 accomplishes what is needed for both conditions.

The Commissioners agreed that condition no. 25 should be eliminated.

Commissioner Cartwright moved to adopt P.C. Resolution 2001-40 thereby approving the conditions of approval for the Upper Point Vicente area, as modified, seconded by Commissioner Vannorsdall. Approved, (4-3) with Commissioners Long, Mueller, and Vice Chairman Clark dissenting.

Chairman Lyon noted that the Planning Commission has now forwarded a recommendation to the City Council on the Long Point project for their consideration at their November 7 meeting.

ITEMS TO BE PLACED ON FUTURE AGENDAS

Vice Chairman Clark asked that an item to allow for an update on the neighborhood compatibility guidelines be included on the next agenda.

ADJOURNMENT

The meeting was adjourned at 12:36 a.m.



2. MINUTES OF OCTOBER 23, 2001


DRAFT


CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES
PLANNING COMMISSION
REGULAR MEETING
OCTOBER 23, 2001

CALL TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order by Chairman Lyon at 7:03 p.m. at the Fred Hesse Community Room, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard.

FLAG SALUTE

Commissioner Vannorsdall led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ATTENDANCE

Present:Commissioners Cartwright, Long, Mueller, Paulson, Vannorsdall, Vice Chairman Clark, Chairman Lyon

Absent: None

Also present were Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement Rojas, Senior Planner Fox, and Recording Secretary Peterson.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

Without objection, the agenda was approved as presented.

COMMUNICATIONS

Director/Secretary Rojas distributed 3 items of correspondence regarding Agenda Item No. 2 and 2 letters of correspondence relating to Agenda Item No. 4. He also reported that staff had received two written requests for continuances, one from the applicant for Agenda Item No. 2 and the other from the applicant for Agenda Item No. 4.

Director/Secretary Rojas reported that at the last City Council meeting the Council had unanimously denied the use of Upper Point Vicente land for the Long Point project.

Commissioner Long reported that he had received a communication from the applicant of Agenda Item No. 3 inviting him to visit the site. The other Commissioners acknowledged they had received a similar communication.

Commissioner Mueller reported that he had met with Seaview residents to look at the view from their properties and how the proposal on Yacht Harbor would affect those views.

CONSENT CALENDAR


1. Minutes of October 9, 2001


Commissioner Long asked that a comment he had made stating that the Chairman had followed all applicable rules be added to page 8 of the minutes. He noted a clarification of page 12 of the minutes. He asked the third paragraph on page 17 be clarified and noted a typo in the next paragraph. He also asked that the 5th paragraph on page 17 have language added for clarification. He asked that on page 18 of the minutes a comment be added to the fourth paragraph. Finally, he asked that the paragraph on page 20 regarding his comments on paths be simplified.

Lenee Bilski 4255 Palos Verdes Drive South distributed a letter to the Commission regarding errors in the staff report and minutes.

Chairman Lyon directed staff to review the letter and if any of the requested changes are verified to be correct, to make the appropriate changes to the minutes.

Commission Long requested the minutes be continued to the November 13, 2001 meeting and the Commission agreed.

CONTINUED BUSINESS


2. Coastal Permit No. 170, Grading Permit No. 2260, Coastal Permit No. 172, Grading Permit No. 2281: Eric Johnson, 2 Yacht Harbor Drive.


Senior Planner Fox stated that the applicant had requested the item be continued to the meeting of November 27, 2001 and was not in attendance at the meeting.

Director/Secretary Rojas noted that the public hearing had been continued to this meeting and if there were individuals who wished to speak on the item, they had the right to do so.

Senior Planner Fox presented a brief staff report summarizing that the Planning Commission, at the previous hearing, had directed the applicant to construct a silhouette of the ridgeline and had decided to consider the separate applications for the house and road realignment together as one application. He noted that the silhouette was not yet erected. He discussed how the road realignment affects how the height of the proposed structure is measured. He noted that the road realignment will allow the proposed home to be on a down slope lot and the 16 foot building height limit would be measured from the average elevation at the front setback line from realigned Yacht Harbor Drive. He stated that if Yacht Harbor Drive remained in its current alignment the property would be considered an upslope lot and the 16-foot building height would be measured from the highest point to the existing grade that would be covered by the structure. He noted that the public notice had indicated that the proposed structure would measure 16 feet in height, unless the actual maximum proposed height would be 12 feet. He stated that neighbors have expressed concern about geological landslide issues and explained that the City Geologist has conceptually approved the project and there is no development proposed within the landslide moratorium portion of the property. He stated there had been an analysis prepared by the applicant regarding vehicle headlights and the affects of those headlights along the realigned portion of Yacht Harbor Drive. He noted that the analysis demonstrated that from the steepest part of the descending roadway the headlights would not create significant impacts on the homes in Seaview, given the difference in elevation and the existing foliage. He also noted that Yacht Harbor Drive was a private street that serves a fairly small residential community and expected the amount of nighttime traffic would be fairly small.

Commissioner Long asked what portion of the 822,000 square foot lot was at a comparable elevation to the proposed building pad.

Senior Planner Fox answered that there were approximately 4 acres on the site that were landward of the structure setback line and outside of the moratorium area. He stated that the remaining area was either seaward of the setback lines or in the moratorium area.

Commissioner Mueller addressed the nighttime traffic on Yacht Harbor Drive. He stated that the Portuguese Bend Club has a number of members and asked if staff knew how many members there were. He also asked if these members were taken into account in the nighttime headlight analysis.

Senior Planner Fox stated there were 51 homes in the Portuguese Bend Club but he did not know how many members there were. He stated the headlight analysis was prepared by the applicant and demonstrated that there would not be a significant impact on the homes in Seaview.

Commissioner Long asked staff if they had considered looking at the structure/lot ratio and assessing neighborhood compatibility by looking only at the portion of the lot that bears some relationship to the house as opposed to the entire lot area.

Senior Planner Fox stated he had not done that but certainly could do so.

Commissioner Long questioned why the Commission would consider this application without a height variation because of a proposed, but not yet approved, road alignment.

Senior Planner Fox stated that the realignment of the road was the second portion of the application when originally brought before the Commission. He stated that the applicant had submitted two separate applications. The Planning Commission had stated at the last meeting that they were not interested in hearing the separate projects but would rather hear them as one project.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if Yacht Harbor Drive was to be relocated with the Transamerica application.

Senior Planner Fox answered that the road would have remained in approximately the same location, with just a slight realignment.

Commissioner Mueller stated he had received a communication from the Seaview residents stating that there would be some modifications to the proposed plan. He asked staff if they were aware of what those changes might be.

Senior Planner Fox stated he was not aware of the specific modifications to the plan.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Diane Weinberger 4206 Exultant Drive stated she was the president of the Seaview Residents Association. She stated that it was obvious from the discussion of the Commissioners that this was not an average single family lot size and not an average single family house size. Because of that, she felt it was important to flag the structure outline rather than just the ridgeline.

Director/Secretary Rojas noted that the Planning Commission had, at the last meeting, directed the applicant to flag only the ridgelines.

Commissioner Long stated that he had not visited the site before the last meeting, but has now since been to the site. He felt the property had serious problems with neighborhood compatibility and the chance that he could be persuaded it was compatible without seeing the entire structure flagged was very remote.

Chairman Lyon understood that it would be an economic hardship for the applicant to flag the entire structure because part of the structure goes over what is now the existing road.

Vice Chairman Clark agreed with Commissioner Long’s concerns with neighborhood compatibility and the need to flag the entire structure.

Chairman Lyon asked staff to work with the applicant to find a way to flag the structure that would avoid encroaching onto the roadway.

Commissioner Mueller was concerned that the applicant was changing the project and ridgeline and felt the Commission should reconsider their decision about flagging only the ridgeline.

Commissioner Paulson asked if the redesign was being done based on the meetings with the community and neighbors.

Senior Planer Fox answered that staff was not present at the meeting and had not received any indication that the project would be redesigned.

Commissioner Paulson felt that if the applicant was redesigning the project based on meetings with the neighbors and was trying to respond to their concerns, he did not feel the Planning Commission should then penalize him and require he flag the entire structure.

Commissioner Cartwright agreed, and felt the applicant was following the direction given previously by the Planning Commission.

Commissioner Paulson felt it would be better to allow the applicant to flag the ridgeline and if, after viewing the flagging the Commission did not feel the flagging was adequate to understand what the view impacts would be, then require the applicant to construct the entire silhouette.

Jill Carlton 4265 Palos Verdes Drive South felt that flagging the entire structure was very important to effectively evaluate any view impacts. She felt the issue of useable acreage that Commissioner Long discussed was a very good point and felt it should be pursued.

Steve Carlton 4265 Palos Verdes Drive South stated he had concerns with landscaping, area lighting, and fencing along Palos Verdes Drive South. He too had concerns on simply flagging the ridgeline and felt the entire project should be flagged. He felt the depth of the structure should be addressed in the total view analysis, as the further out the structure goes the more it will impair the view.

Debbie Huff 4245 Palos Verdes Drive South asked about the fundamental right to build that had been discussed. She stated that it was her understanding that the applicant had the right to propose a plan and the Planning Commission then has the responsibility to decide whether that plan creates a significant impact to the community or not. She stated that she had been reading the Height Variation Guidelines and noted that the proposed structure is 39 feet, 26 feet above ground and 11 feet below ground. She noted there was no provision for exempting the basement in the measurement of the height. She asked why the applicant was not required to apply for a height variation. Ms. Huff also questioned the average elevation of the setback line that surrounds the street, which is the elevation used to determine the height. She stated the staff report said the elevation was 218 feet, however in looking at the elevation plans provided by the Johnsons the average is 215 feet. She noted that at the point of access to the home the elevation was 213 feet.

Chairman Lyon suggested Ms. Huff visit the Planning Department, as she would find the answers to most of her questions in the City’s Development Code.

Commissioner Long stated that there was no absolute right of the applicant to build where they need to obtain permits from the City. He stated the Johnsons had applied for these permits and the staff report outlines the findings that have to be made to issue the permits pursuant to the Development Code. He felt that if Ms. Huff carefully viewed the staff report that would assist her in many of her questions.

Ms. Huff stated that she had read the guidelines and still did not understand why a height variation was not needed.

Commissioner Long shared Ms. Huff’s question as to why a height variation permit was not required based on the premise that the road has been realigned even though it has not yet been realigned.

Lenee Bilski 4255 Palos Verdes Drive South stated she was speaking as the regional representative for the Washington D.C. based America the Beautiful Fund. She explained the organization and its purpose of conserving America’s beauty and heritage. She stated she was impressed with the Commission’s concern with this project. She explained that the view along Palos Verdes Drive South of whitewater, shoreline, ocean, and Catalina Island was public viewing area. She felt the proposed structures would impair the view from public property on Palos Verdes Drive South. She felt that too much of the areas landscape has been lost and it was imperative that whatever can, must be done to preserve it and she encouraged the Planning Commission to do everything in their power toward that end. She stated that there are 1,000 members in the Portuguese Bend Beach Club who can have parties at the beach and was concerned about the traffic and parking along Yacht Harbor Drive. She also felt that the silhouette of the entire structure should be erected and wished the project could be lowered by a few feet.

Commissioner Paulson asked Ms. Bilski what she would like to see at the site.

Ms. Bilski answered that she wished to keep the area viewable to the public, and because of the massive portions of the proposed structure she felt the view may be blocked from Palos Verdes Drive South.

Commissioner Paulson asked if she felt lowering the project by two feet would be satisfactory.

Ms. Bilski stated that lowering the project 2 to 4 feet would be the same height as the previously approved Transamerica project

Evie Hunter 18 Martingale Drive stated that when she was a child there was a big clubhouse and large pool on or near the property. She stated the clubhouse and pool fell apart and wondered how the land suddenly became stabilized in 40 years.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Chairman Lyon proposed continuing the item to the meeting of November 27 and direct staff to bring the concerns discussed to the attention of the applicant and stress to him the need to outline the house in a sufficient manner to indicate potential view obstructions from any surrounding or nearby residences.

Vice Chairman Clark stated the flagging was an issue, but in addition there was the issue of the need for a height variation application given the fact the Planning Commission has not approved the relocation of Yacht Harbor Drive. He felt that given the Planning Commission has not presupposed the approval of the realignment of the road and given staff’s summarization of the impacts of not realigning the road then it seems logical and appropriate that a height variation application should be part of the packet.

Chairman Lyon felt this application should be looked at as an entire package, which includes the relocation of the road and building of the new structures.

Commissioner Cartwright stated this discussion had occurred at a previous meeting and it was his recollection that the Commission had decided very clearly that they wanted to consider both applications at the same time.

Director/Secretary Rojas realized that the public and Planning Commission needed clarification on the issue of height and suggested that staff bring better visual aids to the meeting when this item will be heard that demonstrate the scenarios so that the Planning Commission and public can better visualize the project. The Planning Commission can then give direction to the applicant and/or staff. He also stated that staff would discuss with the applicant the issue of silhouetting and explain that the Planning Commission did not alter their formal direction, but clearly have concerns that the silhouette be appropriate to show the entire project. Further, the Planning Commission suggested the applicant work with staff to accomplish what flagging would be necessary beyond the ridgeline.

Commissioner Mueller felt it was important for the project to be silhouetted except for over the road. He felt that only the portion over the road could have the ridgeline silhouetted. He felt that there were views through this property from many different angles that could not be analyzed without a full silhouette.

Commissioner Long stated it would be very helpful to see the analysis on page 9 of the staff report redone or augmented to do the structure /lot ratio based on the portion of the lot that bears some relationship to where the house is proposed.

Commissioner Cartwright moved to continue the item to the meeting of November 27, 2001. Further, the applicant is to work with staff to ensure the silhouette erected is sufficient to show mass as well as view impairment from as many different angles as possible. Staff is to come back with a thorough analysis of the height variation guidelines and a structure/lot analysis be added based on the property located primarily north of Yacht Harbor Drive, seconded by Vice Chairman Clark. Approved, (7-0).

RECESS AND RECONVENE

At 8:35 p.m. the Commission took a short recess to 8:50 p.m. at which time they reconvened.

COMMENTS FROM THE AUDIENCE REGARDING NON-AGENDA ITEMS

Lois Larue 3136 Barkentine Road stated she was delighted with the City Council vote to not allow the use of Upper Point Vicente Park land for the Long Point project.

CONTINUED BUSINESS (CONT)


3. Tentative Tract Map No. 53305, Conditional Use Permit No. 228, Grading Permit No. 2242, and Environmental Assessment NO. 738: California Water Service Company & JCC Homes, Inc., 5837 Crest Road


Senior Planner Fox presented the staff report. He stated that a neighborhood meeting had been held where JCC Homes outlined a number of possible project modifications which included reducing the total living area of all 7 homes to approximately 4,400 square feet; placing single story homes on lots 4, 5, and 6; increasing the side yard setbacks on lots 3 and 4 to 30 feet; replacing exiting foliage to be removed on the rear property lines of lots 1, 2, and 3; and placing a split level home on lot 9. He stated that the applicant also agreed to modify the existing silhouettes to depict these revised building heights on lots 4, 5, 6 and 9. He stated that the residents were generally pleased with the modifications, however a number of residents remained concerned about the overall design of the subdivision and the appropriateness of changing the existing land use. He discussed concerns about the remaining use of the site and stated that the reservoir would remain on the site in its current condition and there was no proposal to park vehicles or make any other use of the area on top of the reservoir. He stated the site would function as a maintenance facility and much of the large heavy equipment and stockpiles of raw materials would be removed from the site.

Mr. Fox noted that a concern raised by the Commission and public at the last meeting was the overall design of the subdivision and particularly the relationship of the proposed lot 9 with the other residential lots. He stated that the revised plans retain the same general project configuration that was originally proposed. He also stated that the Planning Commission had asked about consideration of alternative uses for the site and explained that to staff’s knowledge there have been no alternative uses explored but noted that the zoning would allow for a variety of other non-residential uses including active recreation use, expansion of other types of public utilities on the site, and private educational facilities.

Senior Planner Fox stated that a revised Mitigated Negative Declaration was necessary because of the applicant’s changes to the design and scope of the project and the City Attorney’s concern that a General Plan amendment may be necessary to clear up a discrepancy in the land use designation and the zoning designation of the site. Therefore, to provide staff to make the revisions to the environmental document and to complete and verify any view impairment that may result from the new silhouettes that have been constructed, staff recommend the Planning Commission take additional public comments, provide direction to the staff and applicant, and continue the hearing to the November 27, 2001 Planning Commission hearing.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Kurt Nelson representing JCC Homes, 3480 Torrance Blvd., Torrance stated he and his partner had met with a number of concerned residents in the neighborhood. He stated that the living area of the proposed homes have been reduced by 25 to 30 percent and the two story residents have been eliminated on lots 4, 5, and 6. He noted that by the next meeting staff will have had the opportunity to visit the site and verify that view impacts have been removed. He noted that on the south area of the property near Sunmist Drive there is mostly uncompacted fill and therefore the existing trees must be removed because of over-excavation and recompaction of the site. He stated he has hired a landscape architect and a preliminary plan has been developed to plant the slopes and replacement trees and vegetation. He discussed the development of a HOA which would have the authority and responsibility to maintain the screening vegetation. He explained that to eliminate the view obstruction and change the residences on lots 4, 5, and 6 to single story, the private drive has been moved slightly to the south. He stated that in order to achieve that the minimum side yard setbacks between the homes have been reduced. Discussing lot 9, he asked that lot 9 be looked at in the context of the 10 lot subdivision as a whole. He felt that the lot 9 house sits on a large lot of over one quarter acre and was quite compatible with that size of a lot. Regarding the concerns over easement, he stated he had the title company triple check all of the easements on the property as well as the area immediately to the south.

Tom Alley 6304 Sattes Drive stated he owns a home that is near the proposed lot 9. He explained that he had asked the height of the proposed residence be lowered, the pad lowered, and the setback increased from 10 feet to 15 feet. He noted that two of his requests had been accomplished and felt that two out of three was not bad. He stated that if the sideyard setback could be increased to 15 feet it would be nice.

Greg Johnson 29643 Stonecrest Road discussed his concerns about the impact of the proposed development and its intrusiveness on the Stonecrest neighborhood. He was particularly concerned with lots 3 and 4. He questioned what a 16 foot tall structure would look like from 25 feet back and stated he could not picture what it would look like. Therefore, he asked the Planning Commission to direct JCC Homes, prior to the November 27 meeting, to silhouette all of the proposed homes, particularly lots 3 and 4. He was very concerned about the trees needed for the preservation of privacy and the lack of control the Stonecrest residents would have over maintaining these trees.

Commissioner Paulson stated there was a ridgeline marker in place on lot 4 and asked Mr. Johnson if he had visited the site.

Mr. Johnson stated he had been to the site, but felt he was only looking at representative silhouettes, not silhouettes that would directly impact the Stonecrest neighborhood. He stated he would like to see a silhouette demonstrating the dimension of the proposed houses.

Commissioner Paulson discussed the issue of the trees used for screening and asked Mr. Johnson if he would consider having trees planted on his property so that he could be responsible for their maintenance.

Mr. Johnson felt that was a very good idea. Mr. Johnson added that it had been discussed at the neighborhood meeting that California Water Service adjust the property line slightly to the west so that the existing trees become his trees.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if views were his primary concern regarding lots 3 and 4.

Mr. Johnson answered that he enjoyed a view toward Catalina, however the primary concern with lots 3 and 4 was privacy.

Lois Larue 3136 Barkentine Road stated she was very opposed to residential planned developments and did not like to see them in this city.

Bob Shirley 29635 Stonecrest Road stated the revised plan was an improvement but he still had concerns. He could not picture how six houses could be squeezed into a cul-de-sac. He felt the homes were too crowded together. He felt that lot 9 should be dropped altogether. He stated that the residents on Scotwood get the benefit of a reservoir with a 100-foot buffer, the residents on Sunmist have a 50-foot buffer, but the Stonecrest residents have only a 25-foot buffer.

Mr. Nelson (in rebuttal) felt that Commissioner Paulson had a good idea when he suggested planting trees on Mr. Johnson’s property. He also suggested that in addition to the CC&R’s and any deed restrictions, JCC Homes might be able to grant an easement to the adjoining homeowners for maintenance of the trees. He felt it would be a good idea to talk to the City Attorney regarding this issue. He stated that the proposed maintenance of the existing foliage may not be perfect, but he felt the proposal was better than what was there now, which is nothing. He felt JCC Homes was creating an assurance for maintenance for foliage that is not there now. He stated that there is a reason that the proposed homes are situated they way they are as the piece of property is not symmetrical. He felt that the proposed project provides a fair buffer for the homes on Stonecrest Road and did not think it was fair to compare their buffer with those on Scotwood or adjacent to the reservoir. Finally, Mr. Nelson stated that lot 9 does not relate to the other 6 lots proposed as it is a much bigger lot and should stand on its own.

Commissioner Vannorsdall asked if the existing road that goes to Crest Road would be accessible once this project is complete.

Mr. Nelson did not think that road would be blocked off, but felt that most people would take access to the new homes off Scotwood Drive. He stated that California Water Service would instruct their employees not to use Scotwood Drive and always use Crest Road for their access to the property.

Commissioner Long asked if California Water Service had reconsidered its security needs since the events of September 11.

Mr. Nelson did not know but imaged they had. He stated that next time the Planning Commission hears this item he will make sure a representative from California Water Service was available.

Commissioner Long explained that he wanted to be sure that California Water Service was satisfied that this project will not interfere with whatever security needs they may have.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Vannorsdall asked staff if they had analyzed the project in terms of hardscape.

Senior Planner Fox stated that none of the proposed lots exceed the 50 percent lot coverage maximum.

Commissioner Paulson moved to continue the project to the meeting of November 27, 2001 to allow staff’s completion of the view analysis based upon the recently revised silhouettes and revisions to the renoticing of the draft Mitigated Negative Declaration, seconded by Commissioner Cartwright. Approved, (7-0).

PUBLIC HEARINGS


4. Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744: 26708 Indian Peak Road


Director/Secretary Rojas explained that staff had received a request from the planning consultant that is working with the applicant to continue the item. He noted that the applicant was not present, however his legal counsel was in the audience. He also noted that this project has some additional legal issues associated with it and the City Attorney has requested that at the next Planning Commission meeting there be a closed session with the City Attorney and the Planning Commission. He asked for direction as to whether the Commission wished to have the closed session at 6:30 before the meeting or to recess at the point the item comes up on the agenda to a closed session.

The Commission discussed the options and agreed to hold the closed session just prior to hearing the item on November 13, 2001.

The Planning Commission waived the reading of the staff report.

Commissioner Long asked staff to explain how staff had verified with the FCC that there had been commercial broadcasting at the subject site since 1995

Senior Planner Fox explained that staff had reviewed licensing records that are available on the internet, and knowing the commercial licenses that staff knows are licensed to the subject location, staff was able to locate the date the particular call sign and frequency were first put to use.

Commissioner Long asked if there was any written documentation from the applicant regarding the commercial uses from 1995.

Senior Planner Fox stated there was nothing in writing wherein the applicant states that there was commercial use in 1995 or 1996. He explained the only written documentation was correspondence relating to the fee waiver request before the City Council where there was an affidavit submitted on behalf of the applicant indicating that the commercial antennas were installed in the house in 1998. He noted, however, that there was nothing in writing from the FCC regarding the commercial antennas other than what was available on the internet.

Chairman Lyon stated that the information in the staff report was very disturbing in that the applicant was a person who may have been less than honest in his dealings with the City. He stated that after the fact approvals were always disturbing, however the motive for being after the fact was the key point in his mind. He hoped that some of the facts in the staff report could be clarified at the next meeting.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Larry Helfman 26716 Indian Peak Road stated he had purchased a home in a residential, family neighborhood and the prospect of having what is primarily a commercial activity right next door to him was very disturbing. He did not think the report addressed a very important part of the development code, that dealing with commercial use being compatible with adjacent uses. He stated that the proposal was for an antenna mounted not only on the roof the residence but also for antennas inside of the house to be used for commercial purposes. He stated that neighbors have told him that Mr. Kay’s house has been vacant for years and has been in disrepair. He did not think the proposal was consistent with the City’s Wireless Communication Antenna Guidelines which discourages the placement of commercial antennas on single family homes. He stated that the staff report discusses foliage that screens the antennas, however he did not think the foliage currently exists. He stated that neighbors had concerns about noise, traffic, and safety resulting in the commercial use of antennas on the property.

Laura Ellison 26827 Fond du Lac Road pointed out that the application comes to the Planning Commission as an after the fact application, as the antennas have already been installed and commercial uses have begun on the property. She stated that Mr. Kay has previously presented himself with a predisposition to ignore City laws and regulations and he now is asking the Planning Commission to sanction his conduct by granting him a Conditional Use Permit. She noted that the City has the discretion to deny the request and hoped the request would be denied. She stated that in order to grant Mr. Kay a Conditional Use Permit the Commission must make four findings and the burden of proof is on the applicant as to whether or not these findings are presented. She felt Mr. Kay has failed to meet this burden in his application. She stated she had reviewed the application, looked at adjacent properties, and viewed other properties in the City where Conditional Use Permits have been granted. She was appalled that staff would recommend approval of this request knowing that Mr. Kay has been operating commercially from the residence since 1995. Ms. Ellison noted that the Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines discouraged the installation of antennas for commercial uses on residential properties and the City wanted to encourage co-location. She stated that in his application Mr. Kay had noted that he wanted to co-locate with his own antennas already existing on the property, which she felt was a ridiculous assertion. She also pointed out that there was no vegetation on the property that in any way minimized the impact of the antennas. She also pointed out that Mr. Kay had stated in his application that the proposed antenna was compatible with adjacent uses, which felt was in no way true. Finally, Ms. Ellison noted that the Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines encourages a balance of public and private costs versus benefits. She did not see any balancing occurring with this application. She felt it was one person trying to benefit his private interests by putting money into his pocket and wondered what the benefits were for any resident in the City.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

The Commission had a brief discussion about the project and all stated they had serious reservations and concerns regarding the project, but agreed that the project should be continued to the next meeting so that they could meet with the City Attorney in closed session.

Commissioner Cartwright moved to continue the hearing to the meeting of November 13, 2001, seconded by Commissioner Long. Approved, (7-0).


5. Grading Permit No. 2277: Mr. and Mrs. Jamie Blessum 20 Martingale Drive.


Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Evie Hunter 18 Martingale Drive stated he had concerns about the grading proposed for this project. However, she stated that there had been discussion that the plans would be changed and wondered how the grading would be affected with this new plan. She was also very concerned about the overall footprint of the house, how far out over the canyon the house would project, how close to the street the house would be built, the stability of the project and overall neighborhood compatibility.

Director/Secretary Rojas suggested Ms. Hunter go to the Planning Department and talk to staff and review the proposed changes to the plan.

Mary Bloomingdale 15 and 16 Martingale Drive stated that asked the Planning Commission keep in mind that the average house size on Martingale Drive is 3,000 square feet and the largest house 5,000 square feet. She asked if there was going to be export from the property and noted that with the construction at 19 Martingale there has been a tremendous problem with trucks on the street. She stated that the trucks are using driveways for turnaround and have damaged a neighbors driveway and run over her landscaping. She was concerned with the stability of the lot as well as the setbacks of the proposed home.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Vice Chairman Clark moved to continue the item to the November 13, 2001 Planning Commission meeting, seconded by Commissioner Paulson. Approved, (7-0).

NEW BUSINESS


6. Neighborhood Compatibility Sub-Committee Report


Vice Chairman Clark stated that the Committee had received a draft of a Neighborhood Compatibility Guidelines pamphlet for review. He explained the contents of the proposed pamphlet and that the next step was to meet with the consultant to revise the pamphlet and put it in a form that could be brought to the Planning Commission for review and eventual adoption.

ADJOURNMENT

The meeting was adjourned at 10:38 p.m.

RECESS/COMMENTS FROM THE AUDIENCE (regarding non-agenda items) at APPROXIMATELY 8:30 P.M.:


CONTINUED BUSINESS:

CLOSED SESSION. PLEASE SEE ATTACHED BROWN ACT CHECKLIST FOR DETAILS.









3. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230 and ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NO. 744: Bruce Bartram, Trutanich & Michael and Stephanie Dreckmann, Schmitz & Associates (for James A. Kay, Jr.), 26708 Indian Peak Road. (KF)

TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: NOVEMBER 13, 2001

SUBJECT: CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230 AND ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NO. 744 (KAY, 26708 INDIAN PEAK ROAD)

Staff Coordinator: Kit Fox, aicp, Senior Planner

RECOMMENDATION

Adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, thereby conditionally approving Conditional Use Permit No. 230.

BACKGROUND

On October 23, 2001, the Planning Commission opened the public hearing on this application and heard testimony from two neighboring property owners. The Planning Commission then continued this matter to tonight’s meeting, as requested by the applicant.

DISCUSSION

Since the last Planning Commission meeting, Staff has verified that the applicant has installed additional masts and antennae on the roof-mounted array. These components are not a part of the application before the Planning Commission. As such, Staff is recommending that the Planning Commission adopt a condition of approval requiring the removal of these additional components (Condition No. 12 of the draft Resolution).

At the last meeting, members of the Planning Commission had questions about information from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that documents the previous and continuing use of commercial antennae on the site. This information was obtained from the FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau database on the Internet (http://wireless.fcc.gov/database_info.html). The table below summarizes the date of first use of each of the active commercial frequencies licensed to the subject property.

Licensee

Callsign

Frequency (MHz)

Date of First Use

Greene’s Ready-Mixed Concrete
19030 S. Normandie Ave.
Torrance, CA 90510

KFU695

451.775

1/19/1999

456.775

Edwin M. Storlie
2710 Santa Anita Ave.
El Monte, CA 91733

WPLY921

463.75

4/20/1998

468.75

462.3

4/6/1999

467.3

J. Paul Getty Trust
1200 Getty Center Dr.
Los Angeles, CA

KQG497

852.9625

11/27/1995

856.3375

856.9125

807.2125

10/17/1996

807.9625

811.3375

811.9125

852.2125


ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The City Attorney will be discussing this matter in closed session at tonight’s meeting.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the foregoing discussion and the previous Staff report of October 23, 2001, Staff recommends that the Planning Commission adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, conditionally approving Condition Use Permit No. 230.

Attachments:

P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__
Staff Report of October 23, 2001
Additional public correspondence



P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES APPROVING CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230, THEREBY APPROVING THE USE OF EXISTING ROOF-MOUNTED AND INTERIOR ANTENNAE AND RELATED SUPPORT STRUCTURES AND EQUIPMENT ON THE SITE OF A SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE IN THE GRANDVIEW COMMUNITY FOR COMMERCIAL PURPOSES, LOCATED AT 26708 INDIAN PEAK ROAD

WHEREAS, on October 22, 1998, the applicant, James A. Kay, Jr., received approval of an application for Site Plan Review No. 8334 for after-the fact approval of an existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array, which could be used only for non-commercial radio communications and was conditioned expressly to exclude commercial operations; and,

WHEREAS, on November 4, 1998, prior to the expiration of the 15-day appeal period for Site Plan Review No. 8334, the City Council adopted Urgency Ordinance No. 341U, which established a moratorium on the processing of all antenna applications, including those applications upon which the City had acted but the appeal period had not yet expired; and

WHEREAS, on April 16, 1999, the antenna moratorium was lifted, the City’s approval of Site Plan Review No. 8334 was voided, and the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array were found to be exempt from City permits for non-commercial use pursuant to Section 17.76.020(C)(3)(c)(ii) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code; and,

WHEREAS, on October 15, 1999, Mr. Kay submitted an application for Site Plan Review No. 8736 to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement for a 198-square-foot single-story storage room addition to the rear side of the house, which proposed a large number of electrical outlets, the installation of two dedicated air conditioning condensers for the room and no interior access to the rest of the house; and although Staff suspected that the addition was intended to house commercial radio transmitters, the City could not withhold approval of Site Plan Review No. 8736 based upon these suspicions; and,

WHEREAS, Staff subsequently reviewed Federal Communications Commission (FCC) licensing records and found that several active and pending commercial radio frequencies were licensed to Mr. Kay’s property on Indian Peak Road, and turned this FCC licensing information over to the City Attorney’s office; and,

WHEREAS, the City obtained warrants from the court and retained an expert in the field of radio transmissions, Dr. Henry Richter, to monitor transmissions from the site in connection with an investigation of the alleged commercial use of the existing antennae and found that commercial frequencies were in use at the site. Subsequently, on April 13, 2000, the City filed a complaint for preliminary and permanent injunction against Mr. Kay to prevent the non-permitted use of commercial antennae on the site, Mr. Kay subsequently filed a cross complaint against the City, and these cases are currently pending; and,

WHEREAS, Section 17.76.020(A) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code requires an individual to obtain a conditional use permit to install or operate a commercial antenna within the City of Rancho Palos Verdes. Section 17.96.090 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code further defines the term "commercial antenna" as follows:

"’Commercial Antenna’ means all antennas, parabolic dishes, relay towers and antenna support structures used for the transmission or reception of radio, television and communication signals for commercial purposes. For the purpose of this definition, ‘commercial purposes’ shall mean communications for hire or material compensation, or the use of commercial frequencies, as these terms are defined by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). ‘Commercial antennas’ shall not include antennas owned or operated by governmental agencies; and microcell cellular antennas, owned and operated by state licensed cellular telephone utility companies, located on existing utility poles within the public right-of-way."

Under these provisions of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the applicant, Mr. Kay, was required to obtain a conditional use permit from the City to use his existing antennae and antenna support structure to broadcast on commercial frequencies, as determined by the FCC; and,

WHEREAS, on June 21, 2001, Mr. Kay submitted applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 for after-the-fact approval to establish the existing antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site for commercial use, although Mr. Kay contested that the application was after-the-fact and requested a waiver of the penalty fee; and,

WHEREAS, on September 4, 2001 and September 18, 2001, the City Council considered Mr. Kay’s request for a waiver of the penalty fee for Conditional Use Permit No. 230, and denied the request; and,

WHEREAS, on September 19, 2001, the applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 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 Regulation, 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 Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 would have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore, the proposed project has been found to be categorically exempt (Class 1, Section 15301); and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on October 23, 2001 and November 13, 2001, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence.

NOW, THEREFORE, THE PLANNING COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE, AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1:The Planning Commission hereby makes the following findings of fact with respect to the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 to legalize the use of existing roof-mounted and interior antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site for commercial purposes:

A. The site is adequate in size and shape to accommodate the proposed use and for all of the yards, setbacks, walls, fences, landscaping and other features required by the Development Code or by conditions imposed to integrate said use with those on adjacent land and within the neighborhood because the proposed project complies with the development standards for commercial antennae, as specified in RPVDC Sections 17.76.020(A)(2) through (A)(10). The site provides for two (2) off-street parking spaces for maintenance and service vehicles, the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array does not require special markings or lighting to comply with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirements, there is existing foliage which screens the roof-mounted antennae from many surrounding residences in the neighborhood, and many elements of the proposed project—including the support equipment and some of the existing antennae—are located inside the house.

B. The site for the proposed use relates to streets and highways sufficient to carry the type and quantity of traffic generated by the subject use because the subject property is served by Indian Peak Road, which is a public residential street. Aside from normal residential traffic associated with the existing house, the only additional traffic expected to result from the proposed project is an occasional and infrequent service vehicle, would rarely involve large trucks or other equipment that would adversely affect local traffic for any extended period of time.

C. In approving the subject use at the specific location, there will be no significant adverse effect on adjacent property or the permitted use thereof because the proposed project involves no physical modifications to the existing antenna support structure and array. Although the site would be visited periodically by service personnel, any impacts related to the maintenance and operation of the existing antennae for commercial purposes would be very minor and have no significant adverse effects on surrounding properties. The existing antennae are visible from homes across Indian Peak Road and from Fond du Lac Drive below. Since the conversion of the existing antennae to commercial use constitutes an intensification of the use that benefits the applicant financially but currently does not offset the visual impacts of the antenna array upon surrounding neighborhood, the approval of this proposal will be conditioned to require the antenna array to be painted so as to blend better into the background sky. In addition, no future changes to the height, location or configuration of the existing array will be permitted, and any future applications to expand the use of commercial antennae on the site will require the placement of new antennae inside of the house and other appropriate screening to prevent further visual intrusion upon the surrounding neighborhood. Finally, any issues related to interference impacts upon electronic and other types of equipment, and actual or perceived effects upon human health, are strictly within the purview of the FCC since Telecommunications Act of 1996 prohibits the City from "[regulating] the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the [FCC’s] regulations concerning such emissions."

D. The proposed use is not contrary to the General Plan because the goals and policies of the General Plan acknowledge the need for commercial development and the provision of communications services for the City’s residents, while also calling upon the City to balance these community needs with the preservation of the quality of the City’s residential neighborhoods. The subject property and the Grandview neighborhood are designated Residential, 4-6 DU/acre, which is a land use designation intended to accommodate medium-density neighborhoods of detached, single-family homes and related accessory uses and structures. The existing home is consistent with this designation, and the use of the existing antenna support structure and array for non-commercial purposes is permitted "by right" as an accessory use. Although the conversion of the existing roof-mounted antennae to commercial use constitutes an intensification of the use of the antennae, the primary permitted use of the subject property will remain as a single-family residence. In addition, the approval of the proposed project will include conditions of approval to reduce the visual impacts of the existing antenna array and prevent further visual intrusion as a result of any future applications to expand commercial use on the site. These conditions will allow for the provision of wireless telecommunications services while minimizing or eliminating the visual impacts of the wireless telecommunications facilities.

E. The required finding that, if the site of the proposed use is within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40 (Overlay Control Districts), the proposed use complies with all applicable requirements of that chapter is not applicable because the subject property is not located within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40.

F. Conditions of approval, which the Planning Commission finds to be necessary to protect the health, safety and general welfare, have been imposed and include painting the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array, prohibiting any further modifications to the roof-mounted array, and requiring any future applications to expand commercial use of the site to employ "stealth" antenna technology and other screening methods, and limiting regular maintenance hours to 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

G. The required findings that no existing or planned tower can accommodate the applicant's proposed antenna or proposed service area, or that the proposed tower cannot be located on the site of an existing or planned tower is not applicable because the proposed project does not involve the construction or placement of a new antenna tower.

Section 2:The Planning Commission finds that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230 is consistent with the City’s Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines.

Section 3:The Planning Commission finds that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230 is consistent with the zoning and land use authority reserved to the City pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

Section 4:Any interested person aggrieved by this decision or by any portion of this decision may appeal to the City Council. Pursuant to Sections 17.60.060 and 17.76.040(H) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code, any such appeal must be filed with the City, in writing, and with the appropriate appeal fee, no later than fifteen (15) days following October 23, 2001, the date of the Planning Commission’s final action.

Section 5:For the foregoing reasons and based on the information and findings included in the Staff Report, Minutes and other records of proceedings, the Planning Commission of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby approves Conditional Use Permit No. 230, thereby approving the use of existing roof-mounted and interior antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence in the Grandview community for commercial purposes, located at 26708 Indian Peak Road, 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 13th day of November 2001, by the following vote:

AYES:

NOES:

ABSTENTIONS:

ABSENT:

 

_______________________
Frank Lyon
Chairman

_____________________________
Joel Rojas, aicp
Director of Planning, Building and
Code Enforcement; and, Secretary
to the Planning Commission



EXHIBIT 'A'
CONDITIONS OF APPROVAL
FOR CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230
(26708 Indian Peak Road)

General:

1. Within ninety (90) days following adoption of this Resolution, the applicant and the property owner shall submit to the City a statement, in writing, that they have read, understand, and agree to all conditions of approval contained in this Resolution. Failure to provide said written statement shall render this approval null and void.

2. This approval is for the use of existing roof-mounted and interior antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence in the Grandview community for commercial purposes. No modifications to the height, location or configuration of the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array are proposed or approved by this action. Any future requests for additional commercial antennae will be limited to the inside of the house. The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement is authorized to make only minor modifications to the approved plans and any of the conditions of approval, and only if such modifications will achieve substantially the same results as would strict compliance with the approved plans and conditions. Otherwise, any substantive change shall require approval of a revision to Conditional Use Permit No. 230 by the Planning Commission and shall require a new and separate environmental review.

3. All project development on the site shall conform to the specific standards contained in these conditions of approval or, if not addressed herein, in the RS-5 district development standards of the City's Municipal Code.

4. Failure to comply with and adhere to all of these conditions of approval may be cause to revoke the approval of the project by the Planning Commission after conducting a public hearing on the matter.

5. If the necessary modifications to the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array have not been made within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, approval of the project shall expire and be of no further effect unless, prior to expiration, a written request for extension is filed with the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement and approved by the Planning Commission. Otherwise, a conditional use permit revision must be approved prior to completion of the modifications and/or further development.

6. In the event that any of these conditions conflict with the recommendations and/or requirements of another permitting agency or City department, the stricter standard shall apply.

7. Unless otherwise designated in these conditions, all commercial antennae and related support equipment and structures shall be maintained in conformance with the plans stamped approved as of the effective date of the Planning Commission’s action.

8. Unless otherwise modified by these conditions, all conditions of approval for Site Plan Review No. 8736—for the 198-square-foot storage room addition—and Minor Exception Permit No. 555—for a front-yard fence in excess of the 42-inch height limit—remain in full force and effect.

Conditional Use Permit No. 230:

9. Pursuant to Section 17.76.020(A)(4)(c) of the City's Municipal Code, the applicant/landowner shall agree, in writing, to cooperate in possible future co-location of additional wireless communications facilities on this site. Under the terms of this agreement, the applicant/landowner shall be obligated to:

a. Respond in a timely, comprehensive manner to a request for information from a potential shared-use applicant; and

b. Negotiate in good faith for shared use by third parties.

10. The existing roof-mounted antennae support structure and array shall be painted a color that helps to camouflage them against the background sky. The color shall be approved by the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement before the antenna support structure and array are painted. Painting shall be completed and inspected by the Director within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application.

11. The existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array shall not be modified from its current height, location or configuration—as depicted on the approved plans—without the advance approval of the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement. No additional masts or radiating elements may be added. Existing masts and radiating elements may be removed and replaced for maintenance and/or repair as long as the replacement masts are the same height and in the same location as the existing masts, and the total number of radiating elements does not increase.

12. Notwithstanding Condition No. 11 above, within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the applicant shall remove any existing masts, antennae and other components of the roof-mounted array that were not depicted in the plans and photographs submitted to the City on June 21, 2001, August 15, 2001 and October 17, 2001.

13. Except in case of emergency, regular maintenance of the commercial antennae and related support equipment and structures shall only occur between the hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

14. All service vehicles related to the maintenance of the commercial antennae shall be parked off-street in the driveway or garage of the house.

15. Any future expansion of commercial transmissions from this site (i.e., the addition of new commercial licenses and/or services) shall require the approval of a revision to this conditional use permit. Any new antennae and related support equipment and structures shall be located inside of the house and employ other appropriate screening methods in order to minimize the visual impacts upon the surrounding neighborhood. No new exterior building-mounted antennae or support structures will be allowed.

16. The support equipment for the commercial antennae on the site shall not generate noise levels in excess of 65 dBA, as measured at the property line of the subject property. Any additional sound attenuation measures to achieve this standard shall be the responsibility of the applicant, and shall be subject to the review and approval of the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement.

17. The operation of commercial antennae on the site shall at all times comply with the requirements, standards and regulations of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).



4. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 226, GRADING PERMIT NO. 2296 and ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NO. 742: Verizon Wireless Services, represented by John Koos at TetraTech Wireless. (ES)


TO:

CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM:

DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING & CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE:

NOVEMBER 13, 2001

SUBJECT:

CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 226, GRADING PERMIT NO. 2296 & ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NO. 742 (Applicant: John Koos of TetraTech, representing Verizon Wireless; Landowner: City of Rancho Palos Verdes; Subject Property: 32201 Forrestal Drive – Ladera Linda Community Center [Thomas Guide Page 823, D-5]).


Staff Coordinator: Eduardo Schonborn, aicp, Associate Planner

RECOMMENDATION

Table the item until the application is ready to move forward, at which time a new noticed public hearing date will be established.

BACKGROUND

On October 9, 2001, the Planning Commission considered Conditional Use Permit No. 226, Grading Permit No. 2296 and Environmental Assessment No. 742. The applications request approval for the construction of a new 30-foot-tall simulated power pole, 20-inches in diameter, to accommodate the placement of four (4) antenna panels inside the pole. The proposed pole would be located in a field to the west (upslope) of existing Ladera Linda Community Center buildings, to the north (at top of slope) of the existing residences on Helm Place, and east of the existing public tennis courts on the Ladera Linda site. The applicant requests approval to allow 15 cubic yards of grading to provide for a 14-foot deep caisson foundation for the pole; and a 240 square foot, 12-foot-high, prefabricated equipment structure with a roof-mounted GPS antenna. The equipment structure is proposed to be located adjacent to and north of the new antenna pole, and which will be surrounded by a 6-foot high protective fence and hedge.

Staff’s recommendation at that time was to deny the project. This recommendation was based on Staff’s analysis that concluded that the proposed antenna pole would create significant adverse visual impacts, and was not consistent with the goals of the City’s General Plan, nor the Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines. Further, Staff believed that the proposed facility did not preserve a view corridor from public trails, and would result in a disproportionate cost to the general public by impacting the natural scenery of the Forrestal and Ladera Linda areas.

At the October 9th meeting, the Commission heard testimony and concerns from the surrounding property owners, whom indicated that the proposed antenna would create a dominating visual impact from the residential properties and streets below the subject property. There was also concern among the surrounding property owners that other stealthing options and other locations had not been sufficiently evaluated. As such, the Commission felt there were other options with regards to location and that other methods could be developed to camouflage the antenna facility. Subsequently, the Commission continued the item and directed that the applicant, along with interested neighbors, meet with Staff to clearly communicate concerns and hopefully come up with a compromise solution. The Planning Commission continued the item to tonight’s meeting.

DISCUSSION

As directed by the Planning Commission, John Koos (the applicant) met with the surrounding neighbors and with Staff at the Ladera Linda Community Center site. Predominantly, there was discussion regarding the location of the antenna pole and it being too close to the top-of-slope; the aesthetic quality; and the potential noise emitting from the mechanical equipment associated with the antenna facility.

After hearing the specific concerns of the neighbors, the applicant decided to study other alternatives to the proposed project. Other alternatives include locating the antenna pole near the top-of-slope to the south of the existing public tennis courts of the Ladera Linda site; installing a monopine rather than a simulated power pole; installing equipment cabinets rather than a prefabricated equipment building, which would continue to be surrounded by a fence and hedge; locating the equipment cabinets adjacent to the public tennis courts and the toe-of-slope; and providing additional pine trees to help blend the monopine into the landscape. The applicant’s also agree to move the antenna mock-up to the newly proposed location. However, to ensure the feasibility of the new location, the applicant needs to compile the appropriate technical evaluations, which would determine whether the new location is suitable and if the height of the pole can be altered. As of the date of this report, the evaluations have not been completed and the mock-up has not been relocated.

Therefore, to provide the applicant with sufficient time to submit the necessary information and to allow Staff adequate time to appropriately analyze the modified project, Staff recommends that the Planning Commission table the item until the application is ready to move forward, at which time a new noticed public hearing date will be established.

ALTERNATIVES

In addition to Staff’s recommendation, the following alternatives are available for the Planning Commission to consider:

  1. Approve Conditional Use Permit No. 226, Grading Permit No. 2296 and Environmental Assessment No. 742, and direct Staff to prepare and circulate a Mitigated Negative Declaration and return to a future Planning Commission meeting with the appropriate Resolutions; or
  2. Deny Conditional Use Permit No. 226, Grading Permit No. 2296 and Environmental Assessment No. 742.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:






5. HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 885 – REVISION ‘A’ and VARIANNCE PERMIT NO. 451 REVISION ‘A’: Mr. Mohamad Chahine, (applicant), 5088 Mossbank Drive. (BY)



TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: NOVEMBER 13, 2001

SUBJECT: HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 885 REV "A" AND VARIANCE NO. 451 REV "A".

PROJECT

ADDRESS: 5888 MOSSBANK DRIVE

APPLICANT:
MR. MAX HENONIN
3751 PRESTWICK DRIVE
LOS ANGELES, CA 9002
PHONE: 323-666-3506

LANDOWNER:
MR. MOHAMAD CHAHINE
17104 FIGUEROA STREET
GARDENA, CA 90744

PHONE:
310-532-5335 x156

STAFF BEILIN YU

COORDINATOR: ASSISTANT PLANNER

REQUESTED ACTION: A REQUEST TO ALLOW THE ENCLOSURE OF AN EXISTING 276 SQUARE FOOT COVERED PATIO, AND THE CONSTRUCTION OF A 300 SQUARE FOOT ADDITION, FOR A TOTAL OF 576 SQUARE FEET OF ADDITIONAL HABITABLE AREA. THE PROPOSED ADDITIONAL HABITABLE AREA IS PROPOSED AT A MAXIMUM HEIGHT OF 19.5’, AS MEASURED FROM THE FINISHED GRADE ADJACENT TO THE LOWEST FOUNDATION (83.0’) TO THE TOP OF THE RIDGE (102.5’). THE PROPOSED ADDITION IS PROPOSED TO BE SETBACK 11’-0" FROM THE REAR PROPERTY LINE.

RECOMMENDATION: ADOPT P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-___; APPROVING, WITH CONDITIONS, HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 885 REVISION "A" AND VARIANCE NO. 451 REVISION "A".

REFERENCES:

ZONING: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL – RS-5

LAND USE: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL

CODE SECTIONS: 17.02, 17.48 AND 17.64

GENERAL PLAN: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL

TRAILS PLAN: N/A

SPECIFIC PLAN: N/A

CEQA: CATEGORICALLY EXEMPT (CLASS 1)

ACTION DEADLINE: NOVEMBER 23, 2001

BACKGROUND

On February 8, 2000, the Planning Commission conditionally approved Variance No. 451, Height Variation No. 885, and Grading Permit No. 2108, to allow the construction of a new 4,292 square foot single family residence, at a height of 26 feet, as measured from the finished grade to the top of the roof ridge line. The approval included a 276 square foot covered patio, which connects the habitable area of the primary residence to the accessory structure, and the reduction of the required fifteen (15) foot rear yard setback to 5’-8", which was a reduction of 9’-4".

On July 3, 2001, Height Variation Permit No. 885 Revision "A" and Variance No. 451 Revision "A" were submitted to the Planning, Building and Code Enforcement Department for processing to enclose the 276 square foot covered patio under the existing roof, and add a 300 square foot addition along the front of the existing covered patio, for a total of 576 square feet of additional habitable area.

The application was deemed incomplete on August 1, 2001 due to insufficient information. Upon the submittal of needed information on August 27, 2001, the application package was deemed complete on September 25, 2001. The required 30-day notice was sent to 76 property owners within the 500 foot radius on October 4, 2001 and published in the Peninsula News on October 6, 2001.

SITE DESCRIPTION

The subject property is located near the northwest edge of the City, in the Grandview Neighborhood, in close proximity to the City of Palos Verdes Estates, and is accessed off Grayslake Road. The subject lot was created by the City, under Parcel Map No. 20945, in 1989. The Commission approved Parcel Map No. 20945 with several conditions, including established restricted use areas. The restricted use areas lie generally at the north of the property between the end of Mossbank Drive and the building pad, as well as along the southern side of the building pad to the rear property line. The subject property is located at the end of a cul-de-sac, on Mossbank Drive, and is a 24,398 square foot lot in a RS-5 zoning district. The new single family home approved by the Planning Commission in 2000, is currently under construction.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The applicant is proposing to enclose the existing 276 square foot covered patio and construct a 300 square foot addition, for a total of 576 square foot of additional habitable area. The existing covered patio connects the habitable area of the primary residence to the attached accessory structure. The enclosure will be located under the existing roof, and the applicant is proposing to continue the roof eave over the addition along the front of the patio enclosure, therefore the existing height of the ridgeline will not be increased. The enclosure will maintain a maximum height of 19.5’, as measured from the finish grade adjacent to the lowest foundation (83.0’) to the top of the ridge (102.5’). The 300 square foot addition will be located along the front of the existing covered patio.

The applicant is proposing to convert the existing covered patio into a game room, and the additional 300 square foot of habitable area will be hallways that connect the game room to the primary residence area.

The applicant is also proposing to remodel the interior of the attached accessory structure into habitable space, which will result in the accessory structure becoming part of the main residence. The interior remodel does not require Planning Department review and approval therefore no action by the Planning Department is required for this portion of the proposal.

ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT

The project qualifies for a Class 1 Categorical Exemption under the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), Guideline Section 15301.

Class 1 exempts from the preparation of an environmental document projects consisting of any alteration to the existing structure or topography that involves no significant expansion or use beyond that previously existing. Staff made this determination since the site is approved for the development of a single-family residence and the proposed project consists of a minor alteration to the approval, with no significant additional site disturbance.

CODE CONSIDERATION AND ANALYSIS

The RS-5 zoning district permits additions up to 16 feet in height by right through a Site Plan Review application. Pursuant to Section 17.02.040 (C)(1) of the Municipal Code, a property owner may request approval of a Height Variation to exceed the height of 16 feet up to a maximum height of 26 feet. For pad lots, such as the project site, the height is measured from the highest existing elevation of the existing pad covered by structure to the highest point of the structure. Since the proposed project exceeds the maximum height of 16 feet, it is subject to the Height Variation application process.

Additionally, the applicant seeks a revision to the approved Variance application, because the proposed improvement will encroach 4’-0" into the required 15’-0" rear yard setback area, therefore reducing the setback to 11’-0".

As stated above, the proposed revisions require review by the Planning Commission, as stated in Section 17.78.040(B), since an amendment to a project shall be considered by the same body, which took the final action in granting the original application.

  1. VARIANCE

Pursuant to the Development Code, a Variance is to provide the property owner a relief measure from the strict interpretation of the provisions of the Development Code when practical difficulties, unnecessary hardships or results inconsistent with the general intent and purpose of the Development Code occur on private property. According to Section 17.64.050 of the Municipal Code, the applicant requests a Variance to encroach into the required fifteen (15) foot rear yard setback by 4’-0".

Pursuant to Section 17.64.050, in order to approve a Variance, the Planning Commission shall find that: "1) there are exceptional or extraordinary circumstances or conditions applicable to the property involved, or to the intended use of the property, which do not apply generally to other property in the same zoning district; 2) that such Variance is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right of the applicant, which right is possessed by other property owners under like conditions in the same zoning district; 3) that granting the Variance will not be materially detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to property and improvements in the area in which the property is located; and 4) that granting the variance will not be contrary to the objectives of the general plan or the policies and requirements of the coastal specific plan."

The Planning Commission previously found that granting a Variance for the reduction of the required rear yard setback by 9’-4" would not result in a special privilege, because there are exceptional or extraordinary circumstances or conditions applicable to the property, in that when the subject property was created in 1989, restricted use areas were established on the property, and that the property has a limited developable area. Additionally, the Planning Commission found that the approved single-family residence on the subject property would not be materially detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to surrounding properties in that the subject lot is approximately 20 feet lower than the neighboring property to the rear, and that the adjacent habitable space was approximately 40 feet away.

Staff believes that the proposed additions are consistent with the previously approved Variance findings, in that the proposed patio enclosure will be located under the existing roof, within the approved footprint of the residence, and will not further encroach into the previously approved rear yard setback.

  1. HEIGHT VARIATION

Pursuant to Section 17.02.040(C)(1)(e) an application for approval of a Height Variation to build to the maximum 26’-0" height limit may be granted if the Planning Commission finds that: "1) the applicant has complied with the early neighbor consultation process established by the City; 2) the structure does not significantly impair a view from public property, which has been identified in the city’s general plan or coastal specific plan as city-designated viewing area; 3) the proposed structure is not located on a ridge or a promontory; 4) the structure is designed in such a manner as to minimize view impairment; 5) there is no significant cumulative view impairment caused by granting the application; 6) the proposed structure does not significantly impair a view from the viewing area of another parcel; 7) the proposed structure complies with all other code requirements; 8) the proposed structure is compatible with the immediate neighborhood character; and 9) the proposed structure does not result in an unreasonable infringement of the privacy of the occupants of abutting residences."

The Planning Commission previously found that the approved new single-family residence on the property complies with the required findings for a Height Variation application. The approved residence was designed to minimize any potential view impairment as the residence has been designed to be mainly single story, and the two-story portion has been notched into the hillside. Additionally, the approved single-family residence does not encroach into the view corridors of the surrounding properties, therefore does not significantly impair views from surrounding properties. The approved residence was also found to be compatible with the immediate neighborhood in that at 4,292 square feet, it is slightly larger (296 square feet) than the largest home, at 3,996 square feet, in the immediate neighborhood but on a considerable larger lot at 24,398 square feet than the other lots in the area (average at 11,648 square feet). The approved single-family residence was also found to not result in an unreasonable infringement of privacy of abutting residences because the adjacent properties to the north and south are built at a significant different elevation, the property to the east is vacant and only one window was approved on the west elevation to mitigate any potential privacy impacts.

As discussed above, the proposed patio enclosure will be located under the existing roof, and the applicant is proposing to continue the roof eave over the addition along the front of the patio enclosure, therefore not increasing the existing height of the ridgeline. Because there is no change to the existing approved ridgeline, as all proposed new improvements will be constructed below the existing ridgeline, Staff is of the opinion that the proposed improvements will not impact views from surrounding neighboring properties. Additionally, the residence will maintain it’s current approved bulk and mass and remain compatible with the residences found in the surrounding properties because the additions will be located under the existing roof and between the main residence and the attached accessory structure. Additionally, Staff is of the opinion that the additional 576 square feet will not cause the approved residence to deviate from the scale of the residences found in the immediate neighborhood, because as discussed above, the subject lot is considerably larger than the lots found in the neighborhood. The addition will contain windows on the north and south façades of the residence, however, as discussed above, this will not increase any privacy impacts because the properties located to the north and south of the subject property are at a significantly different elevation. As such, Staff is of the opinion that the proposed project will not be contrary to the findings for Height Variation No. 885.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Height Variation No. 885, Variance No. 451 and Grading Permit No. 2108 included approval of a swimming pool located between the main residence and the attached accessory structure, parallel to the approved covered patio. The proposed project consists of an addition along the front of the covered patio, between the covered patio and the approved swimming pool location. As a result of the addition, the swimming pool will be relocated toward the north and reduced in width. The resulting location of the swimming pool will be tangent to a restricted use line established under the Parcel Map approval. Although the submitted plans indicate that the pool will not encroach into the restricted use area, Staff is of the opinion that a condition of approval should be included in this approval, to ensure that encroachment into any restricted use area is prohibited.

In terms of lot coverage, the approved single-family residence’s footprint is 3,439 square feet and the driveway is 4,442 square feet. The proposed 276 square feet of patio enclosure will not constitute additional lot coverage because it is located under the existing roof. However, the addition along the front of the patio cover will constitute an additional 300 square feet of lot coverage, for a total lot coverage of 8,181 square feet, which is 33.5% of the 24,398 square foot lot. The proposed lot coverage complies with the maximum 52% lot coverage permitted in the RS-5 zoning district.

CONCLUSION

Based on the discussion above, Staff is of the opinion that the proposed project is consistent with the findings for Height Variation No. 885, Variance No. 451 and Grading Permit No. 2108, as approved by the Planning Commission on February 8, 2000. Therefore, Staff recommends that the Planning Commission adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, conditionally approving Height Variation Permit No. 885 Revision "A" and Variance No. 451 Revision "A".

ALTERNATIVES

In addition to the Staff recommendation, the following alternatives are available for the Planning Commission's consideration:

1. Approve Height Variation Permit No. 885 Revision "A" and Variance No. 451 Revision "A" with further modifications, and direct Staff to prepare an appropriate P.C. Resolution and conditions of approval for Planning Commission consideration at the next meeting.

2. Deny Height Variation Permit No. 885 Revision "A" and Variance 451 Revision "A" as proposed, and direct Staff to prepare an appropriate P.C. Resolution for Planning Commission consideration at the next meeting.

3. Identify any issues of concern with the proposed project, provide Staff and/or the applicant with direction in modifying the project and/or conditions of approval, and continue the public hearing to a date certain.

ATTACHMENTS

  • Draft P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__
  • Conditions of Approval
  • Floor plan and Site Plan



6. GRADING PERMIT NO. 2277: Mr. and Mrs. Jamie Blessum, (applicant), 20 Martingale Drive (BY)



TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: NOVEMBER 13, 2001

SUBJECT: GRADING PERMIT NO. 2277 (BLESSUM, 20 MARTINGALE DRIVE)

Staff Coordinator: Beilin Yu, Assistant Planner

RECOMMENDATION

Remand this application to the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement for review, since the application has been revised to consist of less than 1,000 cubic yards of grading, and no longer requires Planning Commission review.

DISCUSSION

On April 25, 2001, an application for Grading Permit No. 2277 was submitted to the Planning, Building and Code Enforcement Department for processing. The proposed project included 1,440 cubic yards of grading for the construction of a new 7,494 square foot single-family residence. The subject grading permit required review by the Planning Commission since the proposed grading application proposed earth movement involving more than 1,000 cubic yards.

The application package was deemed complete on August 22, 2001, and the required 15-day notice was sent to 43 property owners within the 500 foot radius on October 4, 2001 and published in the Peninsula News on October 6, 2001, 2001. During the fifteen (15) day noticing period the City received no correspondence pertaining to the proposed project.

On September 28, 2001, to address concerns of Staff, the applicant submitted new plans with revised rear yard grading. After the applicant resubmitted revised plans on September 28, 2001, Staff still had a concern regarding the proposed rear yard grading and retaining wall. To address this concern the applicant proposed to redesign the retaining wall and requested that this item be continued from the October 23, 2001 Planning Commission meeting to tonight’s meeting.

The applicant submitted revised plans on November 1, 2001, addressing the rear yard grading, and reducing the grading to 1,055 cubic yards. As part of the redesign, the applicant removed a set of stairs located in the north side yard, which exposed a 13’-0" high retaining wall. This wall in turn became a concern to Staff. As shown in the attached letter, in order to address this concern, the applicant is now proposing to eliminate the patio and replace it with a cantilevered balcony, thereby, eliminating 65 cubic yards of grading, and reducing the total proposed grading to 985 cubic yards. Pursuant to Section 17.76.040(D)(4), the revised project does not require Planning Commission’s review.

As such, Staff recommends that the Planning Commission remand the subject application to the Director for review. The Director’s decision on the project may be appealed to the Planning Commission.

ATTACHMENTS

  • Letter from Jamie Blessum dated November 7, 2001




7. PLANNING CASE NO. ZON2001-00073: Mr. and Mrs. Gene Price (applicant), 3434 Newridge Drive. (KF)



TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: NOVEMBER 13, 2001

SUBJECT: CASE NO. ZON2001-00073 (AMENDMENT TO GRADING PERMIT REVISION)

PROJECT

ADDRESS: 3434 NEWRIDGE DRIVE

REQUESTOR: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

LANDOWNER:
GENE & LEONNA PRICE
28605 MT. LASSEN LN.
RPV, CA 90275
PHONE: (310) 548-4566

STAFF COORDINATOR: KIT FOX, aicp, SENIOR PLANNER

REQUESTED ACTION: RESCIND CONDITION NO. 11 OF P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-03 FOR GRADING PERMIT NO. 1950-REVISION ‘A’, THEREBY RELIEVING THE LANDOWNERS OF THE REQUIREMENT TO REPAIR THE DRAINAGE SWALE AND CHAIN-LINK FENCE BETWEEN THEIR PROPERTY AND THE ADJACENT PROPERTY AT 3417 STARLINE DRIVE

RECOMMENDATION: ADOPT P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-__, APPROVING AN AMENDMENT TO GRADING PERMIT NO. 1950-REVISION ‘A’

REFERENCES:

ZONING: RS-2

LAND USE: SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE

CODE SECTIONS: 17.76.040(E)

GENERAL PLAN: RESIDENTIAL 1-2 DU/ACRE

TRAILS PLAN: N/A

SPECIFIC PLAN: N/A

CEQA STATUS: CATEGORICALLY EXEMPT (CLASS 3)

ACTION DEADLINE: N/A

BACKGROUND

On May 30, 1997, the landowners, Gene and Leonna Price, submitted an application for Grading Permit No. 1950 to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement. The request was for four hundred forty cubic yards (440 yd³) of grading for a new, 1-story single-family residence on a vacant lot in the Crestmont community, located at 3434 Newridge Drive. On September 29, 1997, the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement reviewed and conditionally approved the application for Grading Permit No. 1950. However, on October 13, 1997, the Director's approval of this project was appealed to the Planning Commission by the adjacent property owners, Tom and Francine Accetta. The Planning Commission considered the Accettas' appeal on November 25, 1997, but upheld the Director’s approval of the project. The Accettas subsequently appealed the Planning Commission’s decision to the City Council on December 10, 1997. The City Council considered the Accettas’ appeal on February 17, 1998, and also upheld the previous decisions of the Director and the Planning Commission. The Prices submitted plans into Building and Safety plan check on June 24, 1998, and building permits were issued on February 23, 1999. The project is currently nearing completion.

On June 24, 1998, the Prices submitted an application for Site Plan Review No. 8310 to construct a swimming pool for the new house, pursuant to Condition No. 15a for Grading Permit No. 1950. In order to provide the necessary safety enclosure for the pool, a 5-foot-tall fence was required to be located in the street-side setback area. However, pursuant to Condition No. 15b for Grading Permit No. 1950, the maximum height for fences in the street-side setback area was limited to forty-two inches (42"). On June 30, 1998, the Prices were advised that a minor exception permit was required for the pool fencing and the application for Site Plan Review No. 8310 was deemed incomplete.

During the course of construction, the Prices found that portions of the approved upslope 3½-foot-tall retaining wall at the northwest corner of the property would need to be increased up to six feet (6’0") in height. The Prices indicated that this was the result of incomplete data regarding the topography of adjacent properties on the original grading plan. The Prices also indicated that additional excavation was necessary for the removal of unanticipated deposits of limestone on the property.

On May 18, 2000, the Prices submitted applications for Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’ and Minor Exception Permit No. 563. The grading permit revision proposed four hundred sixty-two cubic yards (462 yd³) of additional grading for the increased retaining wall height, as well as for a new retaining wall proposed at the toe of the slope along Newridge Drive. The minor exception permit was for a section of 5-foot-tall fence to enclose the pool area, as well as 6-foot-tall vehicle gates at the driveway. The Planning Commission considered all of these applications on February 27, 2001 and conditionally approved everything except the proposed grading and retaining wall at the toe of the slope along Newridge Drive. Among the conditions of approval for the grading permit revision was Condition No. 11, which states that:

[the Prices] shall be responsible for repairing any portion of the existing drainage swale and chain-link fence that has been undermined by the excavation of the upslope retaining wall.

This condition was imposed based upon concerns raised by the Accettas regarding damage to the swale and fence that had occurred during construction of the Prices’ home. Based upon a survey provided by the Prices, Staff believed that a significant portion of the swale and fence were located on the Prices’ property. In addition, Staff assumed that since the Accettas were concerned about the repairs to these features, that they would allow the Prices to also repair any damaged portion of the swale and fence that were on the Accettas’ property.

Staff has subsequently learned that the Prices and the Accettas have each obtained restraining orders against one another to prevent access to one another’s properties. In addition, Staff has been informed that the Accettas have filed suit against the Prices to assert and establish rights to the portions of the property containing the swale and fence that were depicted as a part of the Prices’ property in the above-mentioned survey. Based upon these actions, the Prices claim that they are unable to repair any damaged portions of the swale and fence, as required by Condition No. 11.

On August 28, 2001, Staff sent a letter to the Accettas asking for independent confirmation of the Prices’ claim that the Accettas would prevent the Prices from repairing the swale and fence (see attached letter). On September 5, 2001, the Accettas’ attorney responded to Staff’s letter and confirmed that the Accettas would not allow the Prices access to repair the swale and fence (see attached letter).

SITE AND PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The subject property consists of a 5,800-square-foot single-story residence on a 19,268-square-foot pad lot in the Crestmont community. The site is surrounded by detached, single-family residences. The land use and zoning designations for the site are Residential 1-2 DU/acre and RS-2, respectively.

Based upon the foregoing information, Staff believes that the Prices are unable to fulfill the requirements of Condition No. 11 due to circumstances beyond their control at this time. Therefore, Staff is requesting that the Planning Commission consider rescinding this condition of approval.

CODE CONSIDERATIONS AND ANALYSIS

In adopting P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 approving Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, the Planning Commission made all eight required findings in reference to the property and project under consideration (see attached resolution). As discussed above, Staff believes that the Prices will be unable to fulfill one of the conditions of approval that were based upon these findings. Staff was concerned that relieving the Prices of the obligation to repair the swale might jeopardize the safety of the Prices, the Accettas and the other "upstream" property owners served by the swale, as well as the City’s public rights-of-way (i.e., Newridge Drive and Starline Drive). To that end, Staff required the Prices to provide a statement from their engineer of the adequacy of the existing site drainage, including the swale in its current condition. This statement is a standard requirement for the development of new homes. The City’s geotechnical consultant and the Building Official have also previously inspected the grading adjacent to the swale, and no adverse impacts to the subject property or neighboring properties were noted. Therefore, Staff believes that rescission of this condition will not be inconsistent with the Planning Commission’s previous findings of approval for Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

On October 24, 2001 public hearing notices were mailed to the applicant, the Crestmont homeowners' association (HOA) and sixty-nine other property owners within a 500-foot radius of the site. On October 27, 2001, public notice of the November 13, 2001 public hearing for Planning Case No. ZON2001-00073 was published in the Palos Verdes Peninsula News. As of the date this report was completed, Staff had received no response to the mailed and published notices.

CONCLUSION

Based on the analysis presented above, Staff has independently confirmed the Prices’ assertion that they are unable to comply with Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 due to circumstances beyond their control. Staff also believes that there is adequate evidence to ensure that the rescission of this condition will not have adverse impacts upon other properties or the City’s right-of-way. Therefore, Staff recommends adoption of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, approving an amendment to Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, thereby rescinding Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03.

ALTERNATIVES

In addition to the Staff recommendation, the following alternatives are available for the Planning Commission's consideration:

1. Approve an amendment Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’ with modifications to Condition No. 11, and direct Staff to prepare and return to the next Planning Commission meeting with an appropriate P.C. Resolution.

2. Deny the amendment to Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, and direct Staff to prepare and return to the next Planning Commission meeting with an appropriate P.C. Resolution.

3. Identify any issues of concern with the proposed amendment, provide Staff and/or the Prices with direction, and continue the public hearing to a date certain.

Attachments:

P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__
Letter to the Accettas (August 28, 2001)
Letter from the Accettas’ attorney (September 5, 2001)
Final Grading Verification
P.C. Resolution 2001-03
P.C. Minutes of February 27, 2001 (excerpt)



P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES, APPROVING AN AMENDMENT TO GRADING PERMIT NO. 1950-REVISION 'A‘, THEREBY RESCINDING CONDITION NO. 11 OF P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-03 FOR A SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE IN THE CRESTMOUNT COMMUNITY, LOCATED AT 3434 NEWRIDGE DRIVE

WHEREAS, on February 17, 1998, the City Council approved (on appeal) Grading Permit No. 1950 for a new, 5,800-square-foot single-family residence in the Crestmount community, subject to conditions of approval limiting the total quantity of grading, limiting the height and number of retaining walls and fences, and requiring separate site plan review approval for any future swimming pool; and,

WHEREAS, on May 18, 2000, the applicants, Gene and Leonna Price, submitted applications for Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, Minor Exception Permit No. 563 and Site Plan Review No. 8310 to allow four hundred sixty-two cubic yards (462 yd³) of additional grading for new and modified retaining walls, 5-foot-tall fencing and 6-foot-tall vehicle gates in the front- and street-side setback areas, and a swimming pool; and,

WHEREAS, on January 26, 2001, the applications for Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, Minor Exception Permit No. 563 and Site Plan Review No. 8310 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 Regulation, 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 Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, Minor Exception Permit No. 563 and Site Plan Review No. 8310 would have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore, the proposed project has been found to be categorically exempt (Class 3, Section 15303(a)); and,

WHEREAS, on February 27, 2001, the Planning Commission adopted P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03, thereby conditionally approving Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision ‘A’, Minor Exception Permit No. 563 and Site Plan Review No. 8310; and,

WHEREAS, Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03, which was imposed based upon concerns raised by the neighboring property owners at 3417 Starline Drive, Tom and Francine Accetta, regarding damage to the swale and fence that had occurred during construction of the Prices’ home, states that "[the Prices] shall be responsible for repairing any portion of the existing drainage swale and chain-link fence that has been undermined by the excavation of the upslope retaining wall"; and,

WHEREAS, Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 was also imposed based upon a survey provided by the Prices, which depicted a significant portion of the swale and fence on the Prices’ property, as well as upon the assumption that the Accettas would allow the Prices to repair any damaged portion of the swale and fence that were located on the Accettas’ property since Condition No. 11 was imposed based upon the Accettas’ concerns; and,

WHEREAS, the City subsequently learned that the Prices and the Accettas each obtained restraining orders against one another to prevent access to one another’s properties, and that the Accettas have filed suit against the Prices to assert and establish rights to the portions of the property containing the swale and fence that were depicted as a part of the Prices’ property in the above-mentioned survey; and,

WHEREAS, the Prices claim that they are unable to repair any damaged portions of the swale and fence, as required by Condition No. 11, without violating the restraining orders or conflicting with the pending litigation; and,

WHEREAS, On August 28, 2001, the City sent a letter to the Accettas asking for independent confirmation of the Prices’ claim that the Accettas would prevent the Prices from repairing the swale and fence; and on September 5, 2001, the Accettas’ attorney responded to the City’s letter and confirmed that the Accettas would not allow the Prices access to repair the swale and fence; and,

WHEREAS, the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement believes that adequate evidence exists that the Prices are unable to fulfill the requirements of Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 due to circumstances beyond their control, and that Condition No. 11 should be rescinded; and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on November 13, 2001 to consider the rescission of Condition No.11, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence.

NOW, THEREFORE, THE PLANNING COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE, AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1: The Planning Commission hereby finds that the Prices are unable to fulfill the requirements imposed by Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 due to circumstances beyond their control. The City was concerned that relieving the Prices of the obligation to repair the swale might jeopardize the safety of the Prices, the Accettas and the other "upstream" property owners served by the swale, as well as the City’s public rights-of-way. In response, the Prices engineer has provided a statement attesting to the adequacy the existing site drainage, including the swale in its current condition, which is a standard requirement for the development of new homes. The City’s geotechnical consultant and Building Official have previously inspected the swale and the adjacent grading, and no adverse impacts to the subject property or neighboring properties were noted. Therefore, the Planning Commission hereby rescinds Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 in its entirety

Section 2: The Planning Commission also hereby finds that all other conditions of approval contained in Exhibit ‘A’ to P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 remain valid and in full force and effect.

Section 3: Any interested person aggrieved by this decision or by any portion of this decision may appeal to the City Council. Pursuant to Section 17.76.040(H) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code, any such appeal must be filed with the City, in writing and with the appropriate appeal fee, no later than fifteen (15) days following November 13, 2001, the date of the Planning Commission’s final action.

Section 4: For the foregoing reasons and based on the information and findings included in the Staff Report, Minutes and other records of proceedings, the Planning Commission of the City Of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby approves an amendment to Grading Permit No. 1950-Revision 'A‘, thereby rescinding Condition No. 11 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-03 for a single-family residence in the Crestmount community, located at 3434 Newridge Drive.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 13th day of November 2001, by the following vote:

AYES:

NOES:

ABSTENTIONS:

ABSENT:

 

_______________________
Frank Lyon
Chairman

_____________________________
Joel Rojas, aicp
Director of Planning, Building and
Code Enforcement; and, Secretary
to the Planning Commission


NEW BUSINESS:(NO ITEMS)






8. PLANNING CASE NO. ZON2001-00105: Arik Abdalian (applicant), 30025 Cachan Place. (KF)

TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: NOVEMBER 13, 2001

SUBJECT: CASE NO. ZON2001-00105 (AMENDMENT TO GRADING PERMIT REVISION)

PROJECT
ADDRESS: 30025 CACHAN PLACE

APPLICANT:
TERENCE KWOK
109 E. FLORAL DR.
MONTEREY PARK, CA 91755
PHONE: (323) 728-4833

LANDOWNER:
ARIK ABDALIAN
30825 MARNE DR.
RPV, CA 90275
PHONE: (310) 377-4407

STAFF COORDINATOR: KIT FOX, aicp, SENIOR PLANNER

REQUESTED ACTION: ALLOW AN APPROVED 3-FOOT-TALL RETAINING WALL IN THE NORTHERLY SIDE-YARD TO BE INCREASED TO FIVE FEET NINE INCHES (5’9") IN HEIGHT

RECOMMENDATION: CONDITIONALLY APPROVE AN AMENDMENT TO GRADING PERMIT NO. 1928-REVISION ‘C’, VIA MINUTE ORDER

REFERENCES:

ZONING: RS-2

LAND USE: SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE (UNDER CONSTRUCTION)

CODE SECTIONS: 17.76.040

GENERAL PLAN: RESIDENTIAL 1-2 DU/ACRE

TRAILS PLAN: N/A

SPECIFIC PLAN: N/A

CEQA STATUS: CATEGORICALLY EXEMPT (CLASS 3)

ACTION DEADLINE: DECEMBER 9, 2001

BACKGROUND

On May 13, 1997, the Planning Commission conditionally approved an application by Arik Abdalian for Grading Permit No. 1928, via Minute Order (a copy of the conditions of approval is attached to this report). The request was for seventy-seven cubic yards (77 yd³) of grading for a new, single-family residence on a vacant lot at 30025 Cachan Place. On May 9, 2000, the Planning Commission approved Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘A’ to allow the width of the two balconies at the rear of the house to be increased from four feet (4’0") to seven feet (7’0").

In August 2000, the City received complaints that the house was not being constructed in accordance with the Planning Commission’s approval. Building and Safety Staff verified that more grading had been done at the rear of the house than was approved by the Planning Commission. In response, on September 21, 2000, Mr. Abdalian submitted an application for Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘B’ to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement. The request was to allow an additional one hundred forty cubic yards (140 yd³) of grading to convert the non-habitable crawl space below the garage to a 535-square-foot habitable area, to convert the non-habitable crawl space below the upper-level master bathroom to a 160-square-foot habitable area, and to create a pad area on the extreme slope area behind the house. On October 10, 2000, the Planning Commission conditionally approved only the additional grading for the habitable area on the lower level, and denied the request for grading on the rear slope.

On October 23, 2000, Mr. Abdalian filed an appeal of the Planning Commission’s action. Included in the appeal request were further project modifications that were not considered by the Planning Commission in its original review of Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘B’. These included additional grading for the relocation of retaining walls in the front- and side-yard areas of the lot. The City Council heard the appeal on December 5, 2000 and December 19, 2000. The City Council adopted Resolution No. 2000-88 (attached), thereby denying Mr. Abdalian’s appeal and directing him to apply for a revision to Grading Permit No. 1928 for the additional project modifications. In denying the appeal, the City Council also directed Mr. Abdalian to make certain site modifications prior to building permit final, including restoration of the rear slope (see additional information below).

On February 13, 2001, the Planning Commission approved Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’ to allow ten cubic yards (10 yd³) of additional grading for the relocation of two upslope retaining walls in the northerly side-yard area. These walls were to be limited to a height of three feet (3’0") each. However, in the course of construction, it was found that the height of the upper wall would need to be increased in order to meet building code requirements.

On October 3, 2001, Mr. Abdalian submitted an application for an amendment to Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’ (Planning Case No. ZON2001-00105) to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement. The request was to allow the height of the upper retaining wall in the northerly side-yard area to be increased to five feet nine inches (5’9") in height. The application was deemed complete on October 10, 2001.

SITE AND PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The subject property consists of downward-sloping lot in the Palos Verdes Monaco community. The site is surrounded by detached, single-family residences to the north, east and south, with the Ralphs supermarket to the west across Hawthorne Boulevard. The land use and zoning designations for the site are Residential, 1-2 DU/acre and RS-2, respectively. Previous approvals and revisions have been for a 6,410-square-foot, 2-story single-family residence, requiring a total grading volume of one hundred thirty-seven cubic yards (137 yd³). The approved residence complies with the setback and open space requirements of the RS-2 district, as well as the 16-foot building height limit for downward-sloping lots.

The applicant’s current proposal would not significantly alter the approved quantity of grading, but it would allow one of the two approved 3-foot-tall retaining walls to be increased up to five feet nine inches (5’9") in height to meet building code requirements. The additional height of the wall will only be directly visible from the subject property. No other changes to the project are proposed.

CODE CONSIDERATIONS AND ANALYSIS

It should be noted that this project was originally reviewed under the provisions of the "old" Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code (RPVDC), which required Planning Commission review for any application for grading on a lot with an average slope greater than or equal to thirty-five percent (35%)*. The original average slope for the subject property was approximately forty percent (40%), based upon the site topography provided by the applicant at the time. In considering a grading permit application, "old" RPVDC Section 17.50.070 required the Planning Commission to make four findings in reference to the property and project under consideration:

*Under the current RPVDC standards, this project would not require Planning Commission review.

  • The grading is not excessive beyond that necessary for the permitted primary use of the lot.

  • The grading and/or construction does not significantly adversely affect the visual relationships with, nor the views from, neighboring sites.

  • The nature of the grading minimizes disturbance to the natural contours, and finished contours are reasonably natural.

  • Grading on slopes equal to or exceeding thirty-five percent (35%) will not pose a threat to the public health, safety and welfare.

The Planning Commission made these findings for the original project and for the previous revisions (Revisions ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’). Given that the currently proposed amendment to Revision ‘C’ is necessary in order to meet building code requirements, but does not allow for any further expansion of the use of the site, Staff believes that is an appropriate amendment with the imposition of the amended conditions of approval in the attached Exhibit ‘A’.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

No public notification was required or provided for the Planning Commission’s original review of Grading Permit No. 1928. The Development Code requires revised applications to be heard by the same decision-making body and using the same notification procedures that the original application was. Since this application is an amendment to a revision of the original approval, no general public notification has been provided for this proposal, except to the property owner, his representative and five other parties who have previously expressed interest in the project site (including the Palos Verdes Monaco Homeowners’ Association).

In approving the previous application for Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘B’, the City Council imposed certain conditions on the project:

2. The maximum additional living area approved by this revision is six hundred ninety-five square feet (695 ft²), consisting of a 535-square-foot living area (bedroom and walk-in closet) below the garage and a 160-square-foot living area (walk-in closet) below the upper-level master bathroom. These new living areas shall remain fully accessible from the rest of the lower level of the house and shall not be used as a separate dwelling unit. Similarly, the entire lower level of the house shall remain fully accessible from the interior of the upper level of the house and shall not be used as a separate dwelling unit. Prior to Building Permit final, the property owner shall submit a covenant and agreement for recordation to the title of the property that prohibits the use of any portion of the lower level of the house as a second dwelling unit without prior City approval.

4. Prior to Building Permit final, the applicant shall modify the remaining crawlspace below the lower level of the house so as to have only one (1) access doorway, which shall not be a "full-height" door. The applicant shall demonstrate, to the satisfaction of City’s Building Official, that the access and interior headroom in the remaining crawlspace will not allow for its use as habitable space. Prior to Building Permit final, the property owner shall submit a covenant and agreement for recordation to the title of the property that prohibits the use of the crawlspace below the lower level of the house for habitable purposes without prior City approval.

5. Prior to Building Permit final, the applicant shall restore the slope at the rear of the house to its pre-existing condition, consistent with the Planning Commission’s original approval of Grading Permit No. 1928 to the maximum extent practicable. This shall include the restoration of the benchmark downslope elevation of 980.00’ for the finished grade elevation adjacent to the lowest foundation of the house. In restoring this slope, the applicant shall comply with all recommendations and requirements of the City’s Building Official and geotechnical consultant.

Staff has advised the property owner on several occasions of the need to comply with these conditions. As of the date this report was completed, Staff could only verify that the size of the crawlspace access door had been reduced and the second access door eliminated (Condition No. 4). Neither of the required covenants has been submitted, nor has the crawlspace or rear slope been modified as necessary. Therefore, Staff recommends adding a condition of approval to this amendment that will prohibit final inspections for any permits for the house or site unless and until these conditions are fully met.

CONCLUSION

Based on the analysis presented above, Staff believes that the requested amendment is consistent with the Planning Commission’s original approval of Grading Permit No. 1928-Revsion ‘C’. Therefore, Staff recommends approval of the amendment to Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’, via Minute Order and subject to the attached conditions of approval.

ALTERNATIVES

In addition to the Staff recommendation, the following alternatives are available for the Planning Commission's consideration:

  1. Conditionally approve the amendment to Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’ with further modifications and/or conditions, via Minute Order.
  2. Deny Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’ as submitted by the applicant, via Minute Order.
  3. Identify any issues of concern with the proposed revisions, provide Staff and/or the applicant with direction in modifying the project, and continue the public hearing to a date certain.

Please note that it will be necessary to obtain an extension of the action deadline from the project applicant if this project is continued beyond the current December 9, 2001 action deadline.

Attachments:

Amended Conditions of Approval for Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’ (Exhibit ‘A’)
Resolution No. 2000-88
C.C. Staff reports and Minutes for Appeal of Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘B’
P.C. Staff reports and Minutes for Grading Permit No. 1928 and Revisions ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’
Revised project plan



EXHIBIT 'A'

AMENDED CONDITIONS OF APPROVAL
FOR GRADING PERMIT NO. 1928-REVISION 'C'
(30025 Cachan Place)

The conditions of approval for Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘C’ are amended as follows (additions underlined, deletions struck out):

1. This approval is for an additional ten cubic yards (10 yd³) of grading to relocate the approved 3-foot-tall retaining walls in the northerly side-yard area.

2. The relocated retaining walls shall be located four feet (4’0") from the exterior wall of the house, but not less than three feet (3’0") from the northerly side property line at the closest point.

3. The maximum height of the relocated lower retaining walls shall be three feet (3’0"), and the maximum height of the upper retaining wall shall be five feet nine inches (5’9"). A maximum of two (2) retaining walls are permitted in the side-yard area, but the walls must maintain horizontal separation of at least three feet one inch (3’1") between walls.

4. Unless specifically addressed herein or revised by this or subsequent actions, all conditions of approval for Grading Permit No. 1928 (as approved by the Planning Commission on May 13, 1997), Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘A’ (as approved by the Planning Commission on May 9, 2000) and Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘B’ (as approved by the Planning Commission on October 10, 2000 and the City Council on December 19, 2000) remain in effect and valid.

5. No final permits will be issued for the house or any related construction on the site unless and until all of the requirements of Condition Nos. 2, 4 and 5 of Resolution No. 2000-88 for Grading Permit No. 1928-Revision ‘B’ are met, to the satisfaction of the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement.


ITEMS TO BE PLACED ON FUTURE AGENDAS:


Staff



9. PRE-AGENDA FOR THE MEETING OF NOVEMBER 27, 2001.


PLANNING COMMISSION
PRE-AGENDA
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 27, 2001

CONSENT CALENDAR:


1. MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 13, 2001


CONTINUED BUSINESS:


2. TENTATIVE TRACT MAP NO. 53305, et al.: JCC Homes, Inc. (applicant) and California Water Service Company (owner), 5837 Crest Road (KF)


A request to subdivide the 4.99-acre California Water Service Company (CWSC) site into ten (10) lots for a single-family residential planned development (RPD). The proposed project includes seven (7) residential lots, one lot for a private street, one lot for the existing CWSC office and one lot for the existing underground CWSC reservoir. The CWSC office and reservoir will remain on the site. The homes proposed by the applicant include a mix of 16-foot-tall single-story and split-level homes, ranging from approximately 4,000 to 4,600 square feet of living area. The proposed residential lots would range from approximately 10,500 to 14,000 square feet. The proposed project would also require approximately 16,000 cubic yards of earth movement.


3. COASTAL PERMIT NO. 170/172 and GRADING PERMIT NO. 2260/2281: Marmol & Radziner (applicant) and Eric Johnson (owner), 2 Yacht Harbor Drive. (KF)


A request to construct a new, 12-foot-tall single-family residence and subterranean garage, guest house, studio and swimming pool, totaling 22,715 square feet of habitable and non-habitable space, on an 18.88-acre bluff-top site in the Portuguese Bend Club community, and realign a portion of the private street right-of-way of Yacht Harbor Drive across the site in conjunction with the construction of the new residence.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

NEW BUSINESS: (NO ITEMS)

*Please note that that the actual Agenda may well expand, or possibly contract, based upon conditions (such as Continuances of public hearings, Withdrawals, etc.) prior to this meeting.

Commission


ADJOURNMENT:


The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday,
November 27, 2001, 7:00 P.M. at Hesse Park.