12/11/2001 Planning Commission Agenda December, 2001, 12/11/2001, Planning, Commission, Meeting, Agenda, Allow the construction of a 1,071 square foot first-story addition and the construction of a new 1,251 square foot second-story addition to an existing single-family residence. The addition is proposed at a maximum height of 22.41’, as measured from the finish grade adjacent to the lowest foundation (94.02’) to the highest ridge (116.43’), and 19.28’, as measured form the highest elevation to be covered by structure (97.15’) to the highest ridge, Allow the construction of a 630 square-foot detached three-car garage and a 6-foot high concrete wall within the 20-foot front yard setback area. The proposed garage will replace an existing 404 square-foot attached garage, which is currently not in the setback area. A Coastal Permit is required for "new development" in all residential districts seaward of Palos Verdes Drive South The 12/11/2001 RPV Planning Commission Meeting Agenda
Rancho Palos Verdes Planning Commission Agenda December 11, 2001
December 11, 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...

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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, DECEMBER 11, 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. 2001-47



CALL TO ORDER:

FLAG SALUTE:

ROLL CALL:


APPROVAL OF AGENDA:



COMMUNICATIONS:


Council Policy Items (Excerpt Minutes):

Excerpts from the City Council Minutes of November 7, 2001.

Staff:

Commission:


CONSENT CALENDAR:



1. MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 13, 2001


2. MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 15, 2001


3. MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 27, 2001


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



CONTINUED BUSINESS:(NO ITEMS)



PUBLIC HEARINGS:



4. HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 938: Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey Younggren, (applicant), 4362 Exultant Drive. (BY)

Requested Action: Allow the construction of a 1,071 square foot first-story addition and the construction of a new 1,251 square foot second-story addition to an existing single-family residence. The addition is proposed at a maximum height of 22.41’, as measured from the finish grade adjacent to the lowest foundation (94.02’) to the highest ridge (116.43’), and 19.28’, as measured form the highest elevation to be covered by structure (97.15’) to the highest ridge.

Recommendation: Adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__; denying Height Variation Permit No. 938 and approving, with conditions, Site Plan Review No. 9202.


5. VARIANCE (CASE NO. ZON2001-00088): Mr. & Mrs. Chris Tsai, (applicant), 10 La Vista Verde. (BY)

Requested Action: To legalize a 6’-0" to 7’-0" high block wall and ten (10) 6’-0" high pilasters along the front property line.

Recommendation: Adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__; denying Variance (Case No. Zon2001-00088).


6. HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 930, GRADING PERMIT NO. 2279 and MINOR EXCEPTION PERMIT NO. 596: Ron & Blanca Letvin, (applicant), 6528 Nancy Road. (AM)

Requested Action: Allow the demolition of an existing one-story residence, and construction of a new two-story residence measuring 3,921 square feet in area, and an overall height of 26-feet. The new residence will contain a balcony, where a portion of the balcony projects 1’-9" into the required 20-foot front yard setback; thereby maintaining an 18’-3" front yard setback. Lastly, a total of 310 cubic yards of associated grading is proposed to accommodate the new residence.

Recommendation:Staff recommends that the Planning Commission continue the public hearing to the January 22, 2002 meeting, and direct Staff to re-notice the proposed project in accordance to the provisions set forth in the Development Code.


7. APPEAL OF USE DETERMINATION (CASE NO. ZON2001-00120): Alan Boeker, Standard Pacific (applicant/appellant), 5601 Crestridge Road. (KF)

Requested Action: Overturn the use determination by the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement that senior condominiums are not consistent with the intent and purpose the Institutional (I) zoning district and are, therefore, not a permitted use in this zoning district. The impetus for this use determination was a request by Standard Pacific to pursue a development project on a 9.76-acre site in the 5600-block of Crestridge Road that would consist of one hundred four (104) senior condominiums and a resident community center.

Recommendation: Deny the appeal and uphold the Director’s determination that senior condominiums are inconsistent with the intent and purpose of the Institutional (I) zoning district, via Minute Order.


8. VARIANCE AND COASTAL PERMIT (CASE NO. ZON2001-00107): Eugene Summers (applicant), 4174 Maritime Drive. (RL)

Requested Action: Allow the construction of a 630 square-foot detached three-car garage and a 6-foot high concrete wall within the 20-foot front yard setback area. The proposed garage will replace an existing 404 square-foot attached garage, which is currently not in the setback area. A Coastal Permit is required for "new development" in all residential districts seaward of Palos Verdes Drive South.

Recommendation: Adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-____, thereby approving Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. 2001-00107), subject to the conditions contained in Exhibit "A".


NEW BUSINESS:



9. SELECTION OF MEMBERS FOR COMMITTEE - NEIGHBORHOOD COMPATIBILITY:


ITEMS TO BE PLACED ON FUTURE AGENDAS:


Staff



10. PRE-AGENDA FOR THE MEETING OF JANUARY 8, 2002.


Commission


ADJOURNMENT:


The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday,
January 8, 2002, 7:00 P.M. at Hesse Park.



AGENDA

RANCHO PALOS VERDES PLANNING COMMISSION

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 11, 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. 2001-47



CALL TO ORDER:

FLAG SALUTE:

ROLL CALL:


APPROVAL OF AGENDA:



COMMUNICATIONS:


Council Policy Items (Excerpt Minutes):

Excerpts from the City Council Minutes of November 7, 2001.

Staff:

Commission:


CONSENT CALENDAR:





1. MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 13, 2001


DRAFT

CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES
PLANNING COMMISSION
REGULAR MEETING
NOVEMBER 13, 2001

CALL TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order by Chairman Lyon at 7:04 p.m. at the Fred Hesse Community Room, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard.

FLAG SALUTE

Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement Rojas led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ATTENDANCE

Present: Commissioners Cartwright, Long, Mueller, Paulson, Vannorsdall, and Chairman Lyon.
Absent: Vice Chairman Clark was absent (excused).

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

Chairman Lyon recognized and congratulated Commissioner Paulson on his election to the Library Board and Vice Chairman Clark on his election to the City Council.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

Chairman Lyon suggested approving the agenda as presented, however to be flexible with the order as the Commission would be going into a closed session with the City Attorney and the room would not be available until 7:30. The Commission unanimously agreed.

COMMUNICATIONS

Director/Secretary Rojas reported that the City Council had, at their November 7 meeting, agreed to put the Long Point project on hold until May 7, 2002 as requested by the applicant.

Director/Secretary Rojas distributed one item of correspondence relating to Agenda Item No. 3.

Commissioner Paulson stated that his last meeting with the Planning Commission would be on December 11, 2001.

Commissioner Mueller reported that he had forwarded e-mail he had received to city staff.

Chairman Lyon stated he had received e-mail from Mr. Clarkson that he had forwarded to city staff.


CONSENT CALENDAR



1. Minutes of October 9, 2001.


Commissioner Long noted a clarification on page 16 of the minutes. He also noted typos and clarifications on page 17 and 21 of the minutes.

The Planning Commission approved the minutes as amended, (6-0).



2.Minutes of October 23, 2001.


The minutes were approved as presented, (6-0).


CONTINUED BUSINESS



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


Commissioner Long stated that Verizon Wireless was either a current or former client of the law firm he worked for and, as he had done in the past, he would recuse himself from hearing this item.

Director/Secretary Rojas presented a brief staff report. He stated that the applicant has, as directed by the Planning Commission, been speaking with the residents and has investigated a different location that is more acceptable to the residents. The applicant needs to conduct additional studies to make sure they can get the needed coverage. Therefore, staff requests the item be tabled until the applicant is ready and a new notice will be circulated to the interested parties.

Commissioner Vannorsdall moved to table the item until the application is ready to move forward, at which time a new noticed public hearing date will be established, seconded by Commissioner Cartwright. Approved, (5-0-1) with Commissioner Long abstaining.


PUBLIC HEARINGS



6. Grading Permit No. 2277 Mr. and Mrs. Jamie Blessum, 20 Martingale Dr.


Assistant Planner Yu presented the staff report. She explained that the application had been revised to consist of less than 1,000 cubic yards of grading, which no longer requires Planning Commission approval. Therefore, staff was recommending the Planning Commission remand the application to the Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement for review.

Commissioner Vannorsdall moved to approve staff recommendations and remand the application to the Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement, seconded by Commissioner Paulson. Approved, (6-0).


5. Height Variation No. 885 – Revision ‘A’ and Variance No. 451 Revision ‘A’: Mr. Mohamad Chahine 5888 Mossbank Drive


Assistant Planner Yu presented the staff report. She stated that he applicant was requesting a revision to the previously approved covered patio by enclosing the covered patio to create habitable space. She stated that the Height Variation application and Variance application were consistent with the findings of the previously approved applications. Therefore, staff was recommending approval of the proposed revisions.

Commissioner Mueller moved to adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-42 thereby approving Height Variation No. 885 Revision ‘A’ and Variance No. 451 Revision ‘A’ as presented by staff, seconded by Commissioner Vannorsdall. Approved, (6-0).


7. Planning Case No. ZON2001-00073: Mr. and Mrs. Price 3434 Newridge Drive


Senior Planner Fox presented the staff report. He explained that the previous approval contained a condition requiring the applicants to repair damaged portions of the swale and chain link fence between their property and the property at 3417 Starline Drive (Accetta). He stated this condition was added at the request of the Accettas. He explained that since then the Accettas and Prices have obtained restraining orders against one another to prevent access to one another’s property. Further, the Accettas have filed a lawsuit against the Prices to establish rights to a portion of the property that contains the fence and swale. The Prices have since come to the City saying they were unable to fulfill the obligation imposed on them in Condition No. 11. Staff has received a letter from the Accetta’s attorney confirming the Prices could not pass on the property to repair the swale and fence. Therefore, staff determined the Prices could not fulfill the Condition of Approval due to circumstances beyond their control at this time and staff was requesting the Planning Commission consider rescinding the condition. He noted that staff was concerned that rescinding this approval might jeopardize the safety of the Price’s property as well as other properties along the swale. Therefore, staff had required the Prices to have their engineer of record provide a statement to attest to the adequacy of the existing site drainage. He also noted that the city’s geotechnical consultant and building official had inspected the cut of the swale area on numerous occasions and have noted no adverse impacts to the subject or adjacent properties.

Commissioner Long stated he had visited the site and spoken with Mr. Price. He stated that he had asked Mr. Price if and when the litigation is resolved and if the swale is determined to be on his property, would he be willing to repair the swale. He noted that Mr. Price stated that he would then be willing to repair the swale. Therefore, he suggested the condition be amended or modified to state that the Prices need not comply with condition 11 unless or until such time as legal impediments preventing the compliance are removed.

Commissioner Paulson asked staff if they felt there was any heath, safety, or welfare issues or concerns regarding this request.

Senior Planner Fox confirmed that staff had no health, safety, or welfare issues with the request.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Francine Accetta 3417 Starline Drive stated that the Prices had damaged and undermined her property while constructing their wall. She stated that the Prices had also moved her permanent fencing on her property and relocated it inside the swale. She felt the Prices should be required to post a bond to repair the damage done.

Commissioner Paulson asked if the legal issue was where the property line was and right of ownership.

Mrs. Accetta stated the issue was where the fence would be placed after the slope is repaired. She felt the fence should be replaced in the original position, which was on the eastern side of the swale.

Chairman Lyon asked Mrs. Accetta if she and the Prices agreed on where the property line was located.

Mrs. Accetta stated that she had a survey done and the Prices had a survey done, but she did not know the results of the Price’s survey.

Commissioner Long stated that the Planning Commission could not solve where the property line was located or where the fence should be located. He read condition 11 to Mrs. Accetta and asked her if she was willing to agree to the removal of any impediments, such as restraining orders preventing the Prices from entering her property, for the sole purpose of permitting Mr. Price to enter onto the property to repair the swale.

Mrs. Accetta did not think she could do that since there was a pending lawsuit. She stated that she would want to make certain that anyone who came on her property was licensed and properly insured and she would want to know exactly how the fence and swale were going to be repaired.

Commissioner Cartwright asked Mrs. Accetta where she would like the fence replaced.

Mrs. Accetta responded that if she had her choice the fence would be placed back where it was, which was on the eastern side of the concrete swale. In doing so, the fence would be both on her property and a portion of Mr. Price’s property. She did not feel the fence should be put on the property line, as that would mean the chain link fence would be placed in the middle of a concrete swale.

Commissioner Long explained that the Planning Commission could only amend or remove the existing condition 11, which was written for the Accetta’s benefit. The lawsuit now prevents the Prices from carrying out that condition. He felt that if Mrs. Accetta wanted the swale repaired, she might be well behooved to sit down with the Prices and the attorneys to try to work out a solution to allow the repair to take place. He stated that the Planning Commission could not order the Prices, as a condition, to repair the swale as it would violate the restraining order placed against them.

Mrs. Accetta responded that the Planning Commission could require the Prices to post a bond so that at a later date the Prices can repair the swale.

Andrea Wakita stated she was the architect and contractor for the Prices. She stated that the Prices have had three independent surveys of the property done and all three surveys came out identical. She explained that the surveys showed the original fence to be located almost two feet within the Price’s property. She stated that the swale had damage before construction began and it was further damaged during construction. She noted that Mr. Price has never been opposed to repairing or replacing the damaged swale.

Chairman Lyon felt it was logical for the Prices to install the fence on their side of the swale, placing it entirely on their property. He asked if that course of action would be acceptable to the Prices.

Ms. Wakita explained that the swale crosses over the property line in various sections, making it very difficult to place the wall entirely on the Price’s property. She stated that there would also then be the issue of access to the swale.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Paulson moved to adopt Commissioner Long’s suggestion to modify Condition No. 11 to read that the Prices need not repair the swale until such time as the legal impediments preventing them from doing so are removed.

Commissioner Long asked to amend the motion to add an additional sentence to say "Compliance with this condition shall not be required until such time, if any, that all legal impediments are removed and the Accettas grant reasonable access to their property for the purpose of carrying out this condition."

City Attorney Lynch suggested an alternative to Commissioner Long’s suggestion, which would read "This condition shall be satisfied as to any portion of the swale that is located on the applicant’s property and the elimination of any legal impediments to perform the work on the upslope neighbor’s property."

Commissioner Long agreed with City Attorney Lynch’s suggestion but felt that additional wording be added to require that the Accettas grant reasonable access to their property as determined by staff for the purpose of allowing the repair remain.

City Attorney Lynch agreed.

Commissioner Paulson amended his motion to adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-43 to amend Condition No. 11 by adding the wording "This condition shall be satisfied as to any portion of the swale that is located on the applicant’s property and the elimination of any legal impediment to perform the work on the upslope neighbor’s property and that the Accetta’s grant reasonable access to their property as determined by staff for the purpose of allowing the repair." Seconded by Commissioner Cartwright. Approved, (6-0).

At 8:00 p.m. the Planning Commission adjourned into a closed session until 8:45 p.m.

City Attorney Lynch stated that in the closed session she had reported to the Planning Commission the status of litigation of the two items and no action was taken.


PUBLIC HEARINGS (CONT)


Chairman Lyon felt that item 8 would most likely be a short item and felt it should be heard before item no. 3. The Planning Commission agreed.



8. Planning Case No. ZON2001-00105: Arik Abdalian 30025 Cachan Place


Senior Planner Fox presented the staff report. He briefly summarized the past approvals granted for the project and the current request. He stated that the request to increase the height of the retaining wall was necessary to meet building code requirements but does not allow any further expansion of the use of the site. He stated that staff felt it was an appropriate amendment with the inclusion of the revised conditions of approval as suggested by staff. Mr. Fox stated that the City Council had imposed several conditions on the project regarding the use of the lower level, crawl space, and restoration of the rear slope. He explained that staff had advised the applicant on several occasions that he must comply with these conditions and as of this meeting the only condition that staff had verified complete was the second access to the crawl space had been eliminated and the remaining door reduced in height. He stated a required covenant had been submitted that day and the applicant was working on an inspection with Building and Safety to verify the headroom clearance in the crawl space. Mr. Fox stated that staff had added a condition of approval requiring all modifications be complete before final inspection be made. In conclusion, he stated that staff felt the current request was consistent with the Planning Commission’s previous actions and recommended the current amendment be approved with conditions.

Commissioner Mueller asked if there was anything preventing the applicant from coming back to the Planning Commission at a later date and request additional amendments to the project.

Senior Planner Fox stated there was nothing preventing the applicant from doing that.

Commissioner Mueller asked if there was a way to add a condition that would prevent the applicant from requesting further modifications until all previous conditions of approval had been complied with.

Senior Planner Fox stated it was possible, however if a situation occurred during the course of construction where there was an imminent safety issue that needed to be addressed and the project needed to be revised accordingly, the applicant would be in a difficult situation if he could not request a revision.

Commissioner Mueller asked if the requested change to the retaining wall was to accommodate the planter or was it to accommodate the four-foot wide walkway.

Senior Planner Fox stated that it was staff’s understanding that the proposed change was being requested because there was a building code issue that could not be addressed with a three-foot tall wall.

Commissioner Paulson asked if there were a way to approve the request, however condition it so that permits will not be issued until the outstanding conditions on the rest of the project have been complied with.

Director/Secretary Rojas stated that a condition could be added that allows for approval, however a building permit will not be issued until the specific outstanding issues have been completed.

City Attorney Lynch added that another alternative would be to deny the request without prejudice so that the applicant can re-file the request after the items have been completed.

Commissioner Cartwright noted that the applicant was requesting this revision because it was a requirement of the building code.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Arik Abdalian (applicant) 30825 Marne Drive explained what he had done on the property and that he was in the process of completing the survey of the backyard. He stated he was doing all he could to meet the previous conditions of approval.

Commissioner Paulson asked Mr. Abdalian when he anticipated filing with the City the remedial slope repair plans for the property.

Mr. Abdalian explained that the survey was done but because of the recent rain the slope was muddy and work could not commence.

Commissioner Paulson asked staff if the applicant had submitted any type of repair plan to the City.

Senior Planner Fox stated that staff had asked Mr. Abdalian to provide a survey to show the grade has been restored to the elevation that was on the original plans. The condition requires that the slope be graded in compliance with any requirements that were imposed by the building official. He stated that the building official did not see any need for a formal plan to be submitted.

There being no further speakers, Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Paulson moved to approve Grading Permit No. 1928 Revision ‘C’ as presented by staff, seconded by Commissioner Vannorsdall.

Commissioner Mueller asked to amend the motion to include a condition that the applicant meets all previous conditions prior to issuance of a permit for the retaining wall. He felt this would allow for the required slope repair before the applicant would be allowed to build the retaining wall.

Commissioner Cartwright stated that this request was to satisfy a requirement from the Building and Safety Department and not something the applicant may have wanted or chosen to do.

Commissioner Paulson did not feel the proposed amendment would really accomplish anything and did not accept the amendment.

The motion passed on a vote of 4-2, with Commissioners Long and Mueller dissenting.

Commissioner Mueller explained the he voted no because he felt that all of the conditions of approval should be met before getting a building permit. Further, he did not think this would be the last time the applicant would be making a request for a revision to his project.


CONTINUED BUSINESS (CONT)



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


Senior Planner Fox presented the staff report and briefly summarized the history of the project. He stated that the plan submitted to the City depicted only five vertical antenna masts on the roof. However, as of today there were sixteen such support structures on the roof. He stated that staff was able to verify there were unpermitted commercial antenna inside the house. He stated that the Development Code requires the approval of a Conditional Use Permit for all antennas regardless of where they are located on a property. Therefore, the application includes all existing antennas on the property as well as those proposed. He stated there were six required findings to be made with a Conditional Use Permit and staff believes the findings can be made with the imposition of appropriate conditions. He stated that staff has reviewed the application for consistency with the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and believes that conditional approval of the application will be consistent with the Act. He noted that staff has received several letters of concern and opposition to the project.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Larry Miner 29350 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu stated he was representing Don Schmitz & Associates. He explained that the new antenna on the roof were previously existing inside the residence. He stated that the application before the City was to convert the existing amateur antennas to a commercial antenna facility. Therefore, he did not feel the project has changed since it was originally proposed. He stated there was no intent to house antenna inside the building. He asked that the Commission consider modifying pages of the conditions of approval relating to the restriction on the number of antennas on the roof. He felt that limiting the applicant to five antennas on the roof created a hardship and infringes upon his client’s legal right to develop the antenna facility under the Amateur Radio Antenna Ordinance. He felt the proposal before the Commission was permitted by right if used for non-commercial amateur purposes and the request for the Conditional Use Permit would simply allow the applicant to transmit a commercial frequency through the antennas. He stated that because of the nature of the antennas and the need to find a suitable location any prohibition upon modification of the antennas would present another burden upon the applicant and he asked that the condition restricting any further improvements be eliminated. He stated the applicant would be more than willing to paint the antennas to further screen or reduce any visual impacts that are perceived as a result of this project.

Commissioner Long asked if the applicant had any interest in any approval of the application that would require any portion of the antennas to be located inside the home.

Mr. Miner stated the goal of the applicant was to conduct commercial transmission frequencies from the home. He stated that the applicant did not want to have antennas inside the house.

Commissioner Cartwright asked Mr. Miner if he was requesting 20 antennas because they qualify for approval under the Amateur Radio Antenna Guidelines in the Development Code and then he would like those 20 antennas approved for commercial purposes.

Mr. Miner stated that the property owner, under his exemption rights, could have the antenna array at his home as it exists today. He stated that the only thing that had changed since the last Planning Commission hearing was that the elevations had been modified to accurately reflect the property, as it exists today.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if the additional antennas were there to allow the applicant additional amateur broadcasting or where they there as a part of the request for approval of commercial use.

Mr. Miner stated they were they for both reasons. He explained that the applicant was an avid amateur radio buff and his intent was to pursue his hobby. He stated the intent of the applicant was to exercise his right to develop an antenna facility to conform to the requirements of the City’s code, knowing that the facility was permitted by right if used for non-commercial purposes. He stated he was before the Planning Commission so that some, if not all, of the antennas could have the opportunity to convert to commercial frequencies. He stated it was never the applicant’s intent to mislead the Planning Commission and that the original application specified 20 antennas as part of the project.

Commissioner Cartwright asked why the antennas were moved from inside the residence to the roof and why Mr. Kay was already using the antennas for commercial use before receiving approval from the City.

Mr. Miner answered that Mr. Kay had conducted commercial transmission from the property without a Conditional Use Permit, however was no longer doing so. He stated that the antenna that was generating commercial frequencies was inside the residence and in order to keep the primary use as a single-family residence it made sense to put the antenna on the roof.

Chairman Lyon asked if Mr. Kay was presently living at the residence.

Mr. Miner responded that at the present time the residence was undergoing renovation.

Chairman Lyon asked when the last time Mr. Kay occupied the dwelling.

Mr. Miner stated he would have to check with Mr. Kay, but felt it was approximately 1995.

Chairman Lyon asked Mr. Miner if he was suggesting Mr. Kay was exercising his right to conduct his hobby in a house he doesn’t live in.

Mr. Miner stated Mr. Kay intends to re-occupy the property once the renovations are completed.

Commissioner Long asked Mr. Miner if he knew what address appeared on Mr. Kay’s drivers license and where he received his mail and if he knew when the renovations would be completed.

Mr. Miner responded that he did not know what address appeared on Mr. Kay’s drivers license and he received his mail at his office in Van Nuys. He did not know when the renovations would be completed.

Commissioner Long asked if the structure had utilities, other than electricity, hooked up to it.

Mr. Miner did not know.

Commissioner Long asked Mr. Miner if he had ever seen a doorknob on the door of the residence.

Mr. Miner stated that he had not seen a doorknob but knew there was a dead bolt.

Bruce Bartram 407 W Harbor, San Pedro stated he was the attorney representing Mr. Kay. He stated that he had spoken to the contractor at Mr. Kay’s residence and had been informed that the renovations would be complete in approximately 1-½ months. He explained that Mr. Kay could not abide by the condition that every new commercial antenna be placed inside the residence, as he was planning to live in the house.

Commissioner Long asked Mr. Barton if he knew if anyone had ever lived at the residence.

Mr. Bartram answered that Mr. Kay lived at the house, but did not know the length of time. He stated that the current status was that the residence was undergoing renovation with an ancillary use of having an antenna array on top of the roof.

Mr. Miner explained that the antennas on the roof were similar to television antennas on the roof.

Commissioner Vannorsdall asked if there was going to be air conditioning units installed for the antenna equipment.

Mr. Miner stated that the room constructed does have extra cooling equipment installed.

Commissioner Paulson asked if it was correct that the intent of Mr. Kay was to place 20 antennas on the roof, of which all have the capability to be used for commercial purposes and all interior antennas will be eliminated.

Mr. Miner stated that was correct.

Chairman Lyon referred to a letter from Bruce Barton dated November 8, 2001 stating that a total of 20 radiating elements are proposed to be mounted to an existing roof mounted antenna structure for use as an amateur, non-commercial radio facility. He asked if the antennas were going to be used for commercial or non-commercial purposes.

Mr. Miner answered that the intent of the letter was to establish a project that would be permitted by right, which is to conduct amateur non-commercial radio transmissions. However, if the Conditional Use Permit were to be granted, the applicant would then use the antennas for commercial purposes.

Don Schmitz 29350 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, explained that the 20 radiating elements on the roof as they are today are for strictly amateur ham radio operation. They will not be converted to commercial use without proper entitlement from the City. He stated that the dimensions, heights, location, and length of the 20 radiating elements are exempt under the City code if used for private purposes.

City Attorney Lynch felt it was necessary to define some terms used, as part of the confusion was that on the plans there were a number of large masts. She asked if these were the masts or the radiating elements.

Mr. Schmitz answered that those were the radiating elements, which were the items projecting off of the roof by approximately 8 ½ feet.

City Attorney Lynch asked if the antennas were the four or five projections that were fixed to each of the 20 masts projecting from the roof, and if they were removed from the masts the facility would not function properly.

Mr. Miner answered that the projections in question were the transmit and receive components of the antenna.

City Attorney Lynch asked if these could be mounted on any number of things.

Mr. Miner stated that was correct, but what he had tried to do in designing the project was to conform to the code requirements relating to amateur facilities.

City Attorney Lynch asked how many bedrooms were located at the residence and if any of the bedrooms were located on the first floor of the residence.

Mr. Miner answered that he thought there were four bedrooms and he did not know if there were any bedrooms downstairs.

City Attorney Lynch stated that assuming there were bedrooms downstairs one could continue to locate antennas in the bedroom upstairs, since the antennas need height in order to transmit and receive.

Mr. Miner stated that there would be a loss of signal and degradation of the optimal operation of the facility if the antennas were located inside the structure.

City Attorney Lynch stated that since 1998 Mr. Kay has been broadcasting commercially from the antennas located on the second story of the house behind the glass.

Mr. Miner said that was his understanding.

City Attorney Lynch asked that if Mr. Kay has been able to broadcast commercially from the interior of the property, does Mr. Kay now wish to take the interior antennas outside because he actually wants to move into the property himself.

Mr. Miner answered that Mr. Kay wanted to get the property in a state that will allow residency.

City Attorney Lynch asked if Mr. Kay would be prepared to submit an affidavit that he was going to move into the house, and by when.

Mr. Miner stated he would have to ask Mr. Kay.

Mr. Bartram asked why it made a difference as to when the house would be ready for occupancy and when Mr. Kay would be moving in.

City Attorney Lynch answered that a residential site has been commercialized and now the applicant wanted to put more antennas on the roof in order to make it habitable for occupancy when in fact, nobody has occupied the site since at least 1998. Therefore, she was a little incredulous about Mr. Kay’s true intent.

Commissioner Long agreed that he was looking at an antenna facility, which he felt was a stucco box that contains electronic equipment. He asked if there was any evidence of residential use of the property.

Mr. Schmitz felt the question was not what has occurred in the past, but what will be occurring in the future. He stated that Mr. Kay has articulated to him what he intends to do with the property and if there are conditions that can be crafted that will ease the concerns of staff and the Planning Commission. He stated that he would landscape the property and make it nice for the neighborhood, he would paint the house, and have someone living in the house full time.

Laura Ellison 26827 Fond du Lac Road stated there has been changes to the property since she last addressed the Planning Commission, but what was apparent was that this was a commercial business in a single family neighborhood. She noted that staff had indicated the application was generally consistent with the Wireless Communications Antenna Guidelines. She felt the application was absolutely inconsistent with the guidelines. She stated that the guidelines specify that installations on single-family residences are to be discouraged. She asked the Planning Commission deny the application and not allow it to continue. She was very concerned with a comment from a previous speaker indicating that whatever the Planning Commission may decide, the twenty antennas are to remain on the residence.

Commissioner Mueller asked Ms. Ellison if anyone has ever lived at the applicant’s house since she has lived in the neighborhood or if she had ever seen Mr. Kay at the residence.

Ms. Ellison said there had never been anyone living at the property since she had lived in her home and she did not know what Mr. Kay looked like.

Jeff Jordan 26703 Indian Peak Road stated that since 1998 every two to three days there was equipment being added or changed. He stated that he knows one of the contractors at the applicant’s home and he has been taken on a tour of the inside of the house. He explained that he has observed an addition on the side of the house. He stated that there was 12-inch conduit throughout the addition. He felt this addition was for business purposes. He stated the house was not used as a single-family residence and was a blight to the neighborhood.

Jennifer Jordan 26703 Indian Peak Road stated that they lived in a very nice family community and it was frightening to have a house across the street that nobody lives in. She stated that the house has been vacant for the 3-½ years she has lived in her home.

Larry Helfman 26716 Indian Peak Road stated that there were no neighbors he had spoken to who could remember anyone ever living at the applicant’s property. He stated that the Planning Commission must make a finding as to whether the application would create a significant impact on the neighborhood. He felt there was a significant impact to the neighborhood, as there were workers coming and going constantly and he felt that the property values in the neighborhood would drop drastically. He also stated that the General Plan discouraged industrial and major commercial activities and it was very clear that this application was a major commercial activity.

Don Schmitz felt that granting a Conditional Use Permit to the applicant would provide some measure of control to the City in regards to how the antenna array on top of the house would be managed. He stated that the City could put in conditions of approval limiting the hours and days that maintenance workers can come to the property. He stated again that the array of antennas existing on the top of the house is an array that is exempt if it is for private use. He asked the conditions of approval be modified pursuant to the scope of the application in that any future tweaking of the antennas on the exempt array, as long as it is in the parameters of what is exempt as established by the City, continues to be exempted. He stated that he was very much in opposition to any future commercial antennas inside the house which he felt was consistent with the concerns of the neighbors that this be a residential structure. Finally, the condition which calls for removal of antennas on top of the antenna array beyond the five that staff recommends approval of is completely unacceptable. He stated those remaining antennas are exempt if not used for commercial purposes. He stated that if the City should deny the request to have 20 commercial antennas, it would be the applicant’s right to keep the 20 antennas for private purposes.

Commissioner Long stated that the exempt array was exempt only if the Planning Commission made a finding that the array of antennas was actually used for non-commercial purposes. He asked Mr. Schmitz if he had any personal knowledge of what any of the antennas were used for.

Mr. Schmitz answered the only knowledge was what had been communicated to him from his client. He stated that none of the antennas were being used for commercial purposes today.

Commissioner Long asked if the antennas were currently being used for non-commercial purposes.

Mr. Schmitz answered that Mr. Kay had asserted to him that they are being used for non-commercial purposes.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.


RECESS AND RECONVENE


At 10:35 p.m. the Commission took a short recess to 10:50 p.m. at which time they reconvened.


CONTINUED BUSINESS (CONT)


Chairman Lyon began by stating this application was very difficult for the Planning Commission. He explained that the Planning Commission has an obligation to the residents of the City to uphold the General Plan and to retain the environment that the residents came here for. He felt this application appeared to be a commercial endeavor embedded in a residential neighborhood. He questioned the credibility of many of the statements made during the public hearing. He also questioned whether the antenna as currently described is exempt from the Development Code. He felt there was confusion over the definitions of antenna support structures, masts, and radiating elements.

Commissioner Paulson noted that when the application was originally submitted depicting five antenna masts with four radiating elements on each mast staff determined that it was exempt from CEQA. He asked staff if the current plan was still exempt from CEQA.

City Attorney Lynch felt that the issue of CEQA should be looked at again, as the visual impact that was being created by at least 15 more masts has changed the entire appearance of the project.

Commissioner Cartwright asked staff if the application is for 20 antennas on the roof.

Senior Planner Fox stated that the original plan submitted was for 20 antennas and the plans depicted 5 antenna masts with 4 antenna radiating elements per mast.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if the Development Code allowed for unlimited antennas on a roof to be used for amateur purposes, as long as they don’t exceed 12 feet high and 6 feet in length.

Chairman Lyon stated that one could not put an unlimited number of antennas on a roof. He stated that under the definition of exempt antennas there was a provision that two antennas not exceeding 12 feet in height and 6 feet in length could be placed on a roof. He felt that these two antennas corresponded to two of the masts on the current plan.

City Attorney Lynch stated there was the additional exemption for the television type of antenna. Therefore, one could presumably have the two exempt assemblies plus the two television antennas for a total of four.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if the 16 additional antennas were then considered part of the application.

Senior Planner Fox answered that from staff’s perspective the additional 16 antennas were not part of the application.

Commissioner Cartwright stated that the Code allowed for the approval of commercial antennas in a single-family residence if it does not alter the character of the neighborhood. He felt the Planning Commission would have to determine if this was a single-family residence.

Commissioner Long referred to the draft resolution page 3, section 1. He felt that there should be a section A added that states the Planning Commission finds that this application applies only to five antennas that actually existed and were depicted in photographs in the application and that the other antennas do not fall within an exemption and are not the subject of this application. He also felt the Commission should modify post finding A where it says there is existing foliage which screens the roof mounted antenna. He felt it should say the existing foliage does not adequately screen the roof-mounted antennas from the surrounding residences. However conditioning approval upon removal of all antenna facilities to the interior of the house eliminates any adverse visual impacts.

City Attorney Lynch suggested allowing the two antennas that look like television antennas to remain, as there was an exemption for two of that type of antenna.

Commissioner Long suggested stating that other than those two, the others are not exempt and should be moved inside the structure.

Commissioner Paulson asked if the applicant would have to come to the Planning Commission to request any additional exterior antennas, if the antennas were to be used for amateur purposes.

City Attorney Lynch stated that the condition of approval would say that no additional exterior antennas would be allowed. Therefore, if any additional non-commercial antennas were to be added they would have to added to the interior of the property or make the request for a modification before the Planning Commission.

Commissioner Long suggested changing Section D of the Fact Findings to state that the existent home is not consistent with this designation and use of the existing antenna, support structure and array for non-commercial purposes is not permitted by right as an accessory use.

City Attorney Lynch felt it was important to redefine what exists, as what exists has changed substantially between today and when staff first drafted the Resolution.

Commissioner Long stated that what is existing should be defined and then add the language he suggested. He added a sentence saying that compliance with the conditions set forth herein will render the existing home consistent with this designation. He felt a statement should be added that the property is not currently used as a residence and has not been used as a residence for at least five years. He added that the property in its current condition has altered the residential character of the neighborhood, however compliance with the conditions of approval set forth herein will mitigate these otherwise adverse findings of fact.

Commissioner Long then referred to page 4 of the draft resolution, finding D and suggested deleting the language between "although the conversion" through the end of the sentence.

City Attorney Lynch suggested that to make sure all the changes are incorporated, the Planning Commission should adjourn the meeting to possibly Thursday, November 15, for a short meeting to adopt the final resolution. The Planning Commission decided that Thursday, November 15, at 6:30 p.m. in the Community Room at City Hall would be the best time.

In reviewing Exhibit A, City Attorney Lynch stated that Condition No. 2 should be changed to state some roof mounted and some interior antennas. Also, no additional modifications to the exterior antennas without approval of the Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement.

Commissioner Long suggested a condition requiring a 6-month review. The Commission agreed.

City Attorney Lynch noted that Condition No. 18 would have the additional language that the applicant must paint the house within 60 days of the day of the approval, maintain the landscaping at all times, and maintain window coverings on windows facing the street.

Commissioner Long noted that everywhere the Resolution referred to "existing antenna" would have to be modified.

Commissioner Long moved to approve the project as conditioned, subject to the final review of the Draft Resolution and Conditions of Approval to be prepared by the staff and City Attorney and submitted to the Planning Commission at the adjourned meeting, seconded by Commissioner Cartwright. The motion was unanimously approved, (6-0).

City Attorney Lynch stated that the adjourned meeting would be held in the Community Room at City Hall on Thursday, November 15 at 6:30 p.m. She stated that the purpose of the meeting was to approve the resolution and any member of the public who had comments regarding the verbiage of the resolution could make their comments at that time.


ITEMS TO BE PLACED ON FUTURE AGENDAS


Chairman Lyon stated that Vice Chairman Clark had indicated he would like to present a report to the Planning Commission on the status of the neighborhood compatibility sub-committee.


ADJOURNMENT


The meeting was adjourned at 11:46 p.m.



2. MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 15, 2001


DRAFT

CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES
PLANNING COMMISSION
ADJOURNED MEETING
NOVEMBER 15, 2001

CALL TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 6:30 p.m. by Chairman Lyon at the Rancho Palos Verdes City Hall Community Room, 30940 Hawthorne Boulevard.

FLAG SALUTE

Director/Secretary Rojas led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL

Present: Commissioners Long, Mueller, Paulson, Vannorsdall, Chairman Lyon
Absent: Commissioner Cartwright and Vice Chairman Clark were excused

Also present were Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement Rojas, Senior Planner Fox, and City Attorney Lynch.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

Without objection, the agenda was approved as presented.

COMMUNICATIONS

City Attorney Lynch reported that a revised Resolution had been distributed to the Planning Commission and the applicant’s representative. She asked that the Planning Commission take action on the revised Resolution.


CONSENT CALENDAR



1. Adoption of Resolution for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744: 26708 Indian Peak Road


City Attorney Lynch stated that there were two speakers, however the public hearing had been closed at the last meeting. She explained that the speakers could comment on the text of the Resolution, as this meeting was to adopt the Resolution memorializing the Commission’s actions at the last meeting.

City Attorney Lynch stated that, other than changes in language, the only substantive change made was to add a definition of the parameters of the television antennas so that they suddenly did not become huge antennas.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Larry Helfman 26716 Indian Peak Road stated that page 1 of Exhibit A described four antennas that are allowed, two of which are described as TV type antennas. He thought the Planning Commission had agreed at their last meeting that only two antennas for commercial use on the exterior of the property would be allowed. He also noted that in Section 1 of the Resolution, paragraph 2 grants the property owner the authority to have as many antennas as he wants inside the house. He was not sure that was the intent of the Planning Commission. In reviewing the findings, he discussed the occasional service vehicle traffic that was discussed. He stated that the testimony given at the public hearing was that there were adverse impacts to the neighborhood in terms of service and maintenance vehicles. He discussed Section 1 – F which discussed the General Plan and stated he did not understand what the finding was. He did not know what evidence was presented that this application would benefit any public entity other than the applicant.

Larry Miner 29350 Pacific Coast Hwy Malibu, noted on page 1 of the Resolution a City’s reference to the exemption granted by staff for the facility when the antenna changed. He felt there might be some confusion as to which point in time the term "existing antennas" was meant to refer to.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Chairman Lyon suggested reviewing the Resolution and Conditions of Approval.

City Attorney Lynch explained that the reason staff did not attempt to restrict the use of the antennas on the interior versus the exterior of the house was because there was no way to monitor this type of restriction. She explained that it was only possible to establish the coordinates from where the transmissions emanate from, and it cannot be determined which antennas the transmissions are coming from. Further, because staff could not periodically access the interior of the house, staff chose not to limit the placement of any antennas inside the house on the lower floor versus the upper floor, leaving the placement inside the residence to the discretion of the applicant. She stated that FCC regulations do control the maximum amount of radio frequency emission that can occur from a property.

Commissioner Long felt there would be some limits to the number of antennas in the interior to the extent necessary to comply with the conditions of approval and the Building Code. He stated that the number of antennas will be defined by conditions that establish that the primary use of the property will be residential.

Commissioner Mueller was concerned that the City might develop conditions that could not be enforced, but thought there may be techniques that the City’s radio consultant, Dr. Richter, was not aware of that could pinpoint where the signal was emanating from. He thought the Planning Commission had decided to try to keep the commercial antennas inside the house, as the City code allowed for two amateur antennas as well as two television antennas on the outside of the house. He did not want to see the applicant benefit financially from putting the commercial antennas on the roof.

Commissioner Long recalled a discussion from the last Planning Commission meeting that there would be the removal of commercial use from the roof in exchange for granting the Conditional Use Permit to allow commercial use in the interior of the structure. He recognized that ultimately there may be problems in enforcement as to whether the existing technology allows the City to enforce the condition in a cost effective way. He felt the condition should be written as the Planning Commission intended and perhaps acknowledge the condition may change due to financial constraints.

City Attorney Lynch stated there was no evidence that there was ever any commercial use of antennas on the roof. She stated there was evidence of commercial use from the property, however the applicant has stated that the commercial use was from the antennas on the interior of the building.

Chairman Lyon stated he had no comments on the first three pages of the Resolution.

Commissioner Long commented that Section 1-a should be reworded to say: "For the purposes of this determination on the subject application and throughout this resolution . . . ." The Commission agreed.

Commissioner Long suggested that Section 1-b could say "Although there is existing foliage on adjacent properties and rights of way, this foliage does not adequately screen the existing roof mounted antenna support structure and array or the additional antennas added by the applicant subsequent to June 21, 2001 from view."

Commissioner Long then commented on Section 1-c. He suggested adding the sentence "Any adverse affects of any additional traffic are mitigated by the conditions of approval contained in this Resolution."

Chairman Lyon disagreed with the statement in Section 1-f that the commercial antennas would provide a service to the City residents. He felt it was more likely a service provided to people who work in Los Angeles County.

City Attorney Lynch agreed that it does not currently provide a service to the City. However the concern that she had was that Mr. Kay currently has 153 commercial applications pending with the FCC and if any are used for the Nextel Direct Connect type service, that was the type of personal wireless services envisioned by the 1996 Telecommunications Act and are services that could be provided to the public. She stated it was hard to know what type of services were envisioned by the applicant. She stated this was a finding that could help the City to show the City was trying to accommodate those types of services under the Telecommunications Act.

Chairman Lyon then noted in Section 1-f asked if language could be added that says "No evidence has been provided indicating that the current owner has ever resided at this property." At the end of the paragraph he suggested taking out the word "eliminating".

Commissioner Long had a comment on Section 1-j. He stated that depending on how the Commission was going to resolve the issue of commercial antennas being on the outside, the wording should read "By permitting some of the existing antennas to remain on the roof of the residence and by permitting commercial antennas to be located in the interior."

Chairman Lyon asked what was wrong with allowing commercial frequencies to emanate from the two antennas permitted on the roof.

Commissioner Paulson stated that it goes back to the basic premise of what was the purpose of the two antennas under the code.

City Attorney Lynch stated that the issue being litigated in the Abrams case was Mr. Abrams contention that the conversion of his exterior amateur radio antenna radio structure to commercial use, in and of itself, ought not trigger any change that would interest the City.

Commissioner Long added that the City was concerned about applicants lying to the City as to whether the use of their antennas for amateur or commercial uses.

Chairman Lyon stated he did not have any problems with Sections 2, 3, 4, and 5 and noted a small typo in Section 6.

In reviewing Exhibit A, Chairman Lyon suggested changing the first line in No. 2 to read "This approval is for the use of the limited roof mounted and interior antennas."

Chairman Lyon also suggested adding, "up to four" before "each of the two masts may have antenna fixed thereon".

City Attorney Lynch added "which shall be used solely for non-commercial purposes" should be added.

Commissioner Long suggested adding a new paragraph after the first sentence of paragraph 2 which stated "The commercial use of the property is conditioned upon the following modifications to the roof mounted equipment which shall be used solely for amateur purposes:" and then continue with the modifications, which is the rest of the paragraph.

In a discussion regarding the regulation of the commercial antennas, City Attorney Lynch stated that in addition to the enforcement issue the City was walking into the potential argument that it was going too far under the Telecommunications Act and PRB 1 and the balance that has to be made under PRB 1. She explained that under PRB 1 the City has to use the least restrictive means possible to regulate amateur antennas.

Commissioner Long did not think the City was restricting the amateur use, only conditioning the commercial use. He felt the restriction of the amateur use was purely incidental and anytime an applicant wanted the full exemption they were entitled to under the Code, all they had to do was switch off the commercial use.

Chairman Lyon asked again what was wrong with allowing the applicant to use the roof-mounted antennas for commercial versus amateur frequencies.

City Attorney Lynch answered that she did not know, and from the neighbors perspective there would be no visual aesthetic difference.

Commissioner Long felt that this would be encouraging a loophole and every time someone came in and stated they were an amateur radio operator and had two amateur antennas, then could make them commercial with a flip of a switch. He felt that this was encouraging people to lie to the Planning Commission and the City.

Commissioner Mueller stated that the Planning Commission has already voted on how to handle this application and this meeting was to be held to check the language of the Resolution and Conditions of Approval. He did not think the Planning Commission should now change their decision.

Commissioner Long stated that the City Attorney was being cautious, as she appropriately should be. He felt he would like to take a stand on this type of situation unless the City Attorney’s advice was that the standing being taken is unreasonable, unwarranted, unjustified, or dangerous. He felt the City Attorney’s advice was that her preference would be that a more cautious route would be something different.

City Attorney Lynch agreed.

Chairman Lyon concluded that the Planning Commission’s desire was then to let stand what was in the Resolution and Conditions of Approval.

Chairman Lyon made minor word changes to the last sentence of paragraph 2.

Chairman Lyon noted Condition No. 7 to read "May be retained or erected pursuant to this approval." He also added the language "The applicant shall obtain a building permit and any other approval required by the building department to modify or construct the masts and attached antenna."

Chairman Lyon noted a modification to condition 12 to change the word "any" to "all".

Commissioner Paulson requested that "existing horizontal support structure" be added to the condition.

Chairman Lyon asked that in condition 16 the word "additional" be deleted from line 3.

Chairman Lyon asked if, in condition 18, it was reasonable to require that there must be interior window coverings on all windows visible from the road when the City does not require that from vacant homes in the community.

Commissioner Paulson agreed, and felt it was selective enforcement.

The Commission agreed to remove the condition.

Chairman Lyon also noted that the third line of the condition specified that the residence shall be occupied by the applicant. He felt that should be changed to owner, as in some situations the applicant might be the applicant or contractor or someone chosen by the owner. The Commission agreed to the change.

Chairman Lyon noted word slight word changes to conditions 20, and 21. He also noted in condition no. 22 that the word "within" 6 months should be changed to "at" approximately 6 months.

Commissioner Long moved to adopt the Consent Calendar as amended, seconded by Commissioner Mueller. (5-0).


ADJOURNMENT


The meeting was adjourned at 8:16 p.m.





3. MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 27, 2001


DRAFT

CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES
PLANNING COMMISSION
REGULAR MEETING
NOVEMBER 27, 2001

CALL TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:05 p.m. by Chairman Lyon at the Fred Hesse Community Room, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard.

FLAG SALUTE

Senior Planner Fox led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ATTENDANCE

Present: Commissioners Cartwright, Long, Mueller, Paulson, Vice Chairman Clark, Chairman Lyon
Absent: Commissioner Vannorsdall was absent (excused)

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

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

Chairman Lyon suggested hearing items 4 and 3 before hearing items 1 and 2. The Commission unanimously approved.

COMMUNICATIONS

Director/Secretary Rojas distributed one item of correspondence for Agenda item no. 1 and two letters received at the pc@rpv.com address, which he stated that he had responded to.

Director/Secretary Rojas congratulated Vice Chairman Clark on his election to the City Council and stated that he looked forward to working with him as a City Council member.

Chairman Lyon recognized and congratulated Vice Chairman Clark on his recent election to the City Council.

The Commissioners reported that they had visited the sites for the agenda items and had met with the neighbors and/or applicants at the sites.


NEW BUSINESS



4. Neighborhood Compatibility Sub-Committee Report


Vice Chairman Clark gave a brief history and the reason for the formation of the Neighborhood Compatibility Sub-Committee, which was to improve public awareness of the City’s neighborhood compatibility criteria. He explained that a draft public brochure has been prepared, but was not yet suitable for presentation to the Planning Commission.

Commissioner Paulson agreed that the brochure was not yet ready, but once completed he felt it would be a very useful tool for the residents in the community for the understanding of the process and requirements.

Vice Chairman Clark stated the two sub-committee members would not be able to complete their task before leaving the Planning Commission, but would like to see the Commission finish this brochure with staff.

Chairman Lyon suggested having staff complete the brochure and present it to the Planning Commission when they are satisfied it is ready for review.

Director/Secretary Rojas felt staff had clear direction from the sub-committee and could present something to the Planning Commission at the second meeting in January.

The Commission agreed to allow staff to complete the brochure based on the sub-committee’s direction and present the Planning Commission with a final draft for further review at the second meeting in January.

At this point Vice Chairman Clark read a memo dated November 27, 2001 on the subject of the resignation from the Rancho Palos Verdes Planning Commission. The memo stated that Vice Chairman Clark would, in light of his recent election to the Rancho Palos Verdes City Council, resign from the Planning Commission effective November 27, 2001 at 8:00 p.m. He stated he held his colleagues on the Planning Commission in very high esteem and were outstanding representatives of the community and thanked the Planning Department staff for their excellent work and support.

The Commissioners thanked Vice Chairman Lyon for his had work and professionalism during his time on the Planning Commission and wished him well.

Vice Chairman Clark left the meeting at 7:30 p.m.



3. Grading Permit No. 2191: Larry Peha (applicant) and Mr. And Mrs. Heru Wiredja (owner), 3815 Palos Verdes Drive South


Senior Planner Mihranian presented the staff report. He stated that the item was requested by the applicant to clarify the intent of condition 19 adopted by the Commission at the October 9, 2001 meeting. He explained that at the public hearing the project architect expressed his disagreement with the proposed condition to redesign a flat roof over the living room and entry foyer to a pitched roof, and had asked that the condition be removed. He stated the Commission had approved the project with no specific direction to delete the condition. He concluded by recommending the Planning Commission affirm condition no. 19 thereby requiring the applicant re-design the proposed flat roof over the living room and foyer to a pitched roof.

Commissioner Long asked if the Planning Commissioners recalled any further discussion regarding the condition, beyond what was reflected in the minutes.

Commissioner Paulson stated that he felt the minutes accurately reflected what was discussed at the meeting, in that the issue was raised and the applicant stated his objection to the condition, however no mention or direction was given by the Planning Commission regarding the condition.

Chairman Lyon read from the minutes the motion to adopt the Resolution and felt the motion indicated the Planning Commission intended to modify the Resolution in accordance with the suggested elevation change.

Commissioner Paulson did not think the Planning Commission specifically addressed the condition in question.

Commissioner Long felt that normally if there was an applicant disagreeing with a condition there would be something in the minutes reflecting what the Commission felt about it.

Chairman Lyon agreed it was an oversight on the part of the Planning Commission not to address that specific concern.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Larry Peha 67 14th Street Hermosa Beach stated he was the project architect. He displayed a photo board and stated the center picture was a rendering of the proposed house. He pointed out the different elevations of the roof and foyer area of the proposed residence. He explained that the other pictures on the board were of homes on Palos Verdes Drive South that have flat roofs.

The Commission had a brief discussion on the purpose of this hearing and Commissioner Long stated his interpretation was that if the Planning Commission concludes the condition was properly considered and included, then the Commission should reaffirm their decision via minute order. However, if the Planning Commission concludes that there was or may have been an error then a noticed hearing would be required to actually address the merits of the applicant’s request.

Chairman Lyon asked Mr. Peha if there was any compelling reason he could not comply with the condition.

Mr. Peha stated that the reason they asked for the condition to be deleted was because there was a commanding ocean view from this portion of the house and he would like to design some tall windows in that area. He explained that a sloped roof at that area would cut down on the height of the windows allowed.

Chairman Lyon asked if there was a compromise that could be suggested.

Mr. Peha stated he was concerned about putting something half way there which may look worse.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Long moved to notice a new public hearing to re-hear item no. 19 only on the basis that the Planning Commission did not intentionally include the condition in the Resolution, based on a review of the minutes, seconded by Commissioner Mueller.

Chairman Lyon felt this was an oversight by the Planning Commission and asked the staff if they knew of any hardship to the applicant if the item were to be renoticed and heard at a subsequent meeting.

Director/Secretary Rojas was not aware of any hardship created other than time. He stated that a condition should not be removed without noticing the interested parties.

Chairman Lyon re-opened the public hearing.

Mr. Peha stated that the Director had mentioned that if the revision was considered minor then there would not be a need for a new public hearing. He asked if this could be considered a minor revision.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Director/Secretary Rojas clarified that the Code stated that if the action resulting from this interpretation hearing results in a minor modification, the revision could be done by minute order. He noted that in the staff report, staff recommends that the removal of the condition be considered a substantive revision, thus requiring the condition be brought back at a duly noticed public hearing. He stated that the Commission could determine that this is a minor modification and remove the condition.

Commissioner Lyon asked if there was any reasonable expectation that any member of the public might object to leaving the roof as a flat roof.

Director/Secretary Rojas did not think there was previous public testimony directed at that specific issue.

Chairman Lyon felt this was a relatively minor issue in context with the entire project and felt it should be considered a minor modification.

Commissioner Paulson asked when this would most likely be heard before the Planning Commission if a public hearing were required.

Director/Secretary Rojas stated there was a required 15-day notice period, and since there is only one meeting in December, it would not be heard until January.

Commissioner Cartwright stated that he had a concern about the condition and questioned staff as to why they did not think a flat roof was appropriate.

Senior Planner Mihranian answered that there was a concern with the structure’s visual appearance from Palos Verdes Drive South because of the topography of the lot. He stated that any structure on the lot would be highly visible from Palos Verdes Drive South and that this condition was recommended as a way to soften the structure’s appearance from Palos Verdes Drive South.

Commissioner Mueller stated that he still had several questions for staff regarding the issue but would rather wait and ask those questions at a publicly noticed hearing. He was concerned that there may be members of the public who were concerned about the appearance or neighborhood compatibility of the house who may not be present at this meeting.

Commissioner Long repeated his motion. The motion passed (3-2) with Commissioner Cartwright and Chairman Lyon dissenting.


CONTINUED BUSINESS



1. Tentative Tract Map No. 53305, et at: JCC Homes Inc. and California Water Service Company, 5837 Crest Road


Senior Planner Fox presented the staff report. He explained that at the last hearing on October 23 the developer presented a revised project proposal that included smaller homes with lower ridgeline elevations and increased setbacks. Since the last meeting staff has completed the view analysis of the revised silhouettes for the homes, the developer has prepared a landscape plan for the tract, and staff has revised the initial study of draft Mitigated Negative Declaration to reflect the revised project description and the inclusion of the General Plan amendment as part of the proposal. He stated that based upon the revised project, staff believes that none of the homes will create significant view impairment. However, based upon comments by residents staff is recommending the inclusion of a condition that will limit the height of homes. He discussed the landscape plan and suggested amending the conditions of approval regarding the CC&R’s to make specific reference to the homeowners association and the water company respective maintenance responsibilities for landscaping on the site. Mr. Fox explained there was still the apparent inconsistency in the General Plan between the land use designation and the RS-4 zoning designation that has been on the site for many years. Therefore, staff is recommending that the approval of the proposed project would be contingent upon the City Council’s approval of a general plan amendment that would designate the portion of the site proposed for residential development as residential 2 – 4 dwelling units per acre. In conclusion, Mr. Fox stated that staff believes the revised project is consistent with the required findings of approval for the Tentative Tract Map, Conditional Use Permit, and Grading Permit. He noted that the Planning Commission’s action on the application would be advisory only, with final decision to be made by the City Council. As such, the matter is currently agendized for the City Council meeting of December 4. Although staff has prepared draft resolutions for the Commission’s consideration, the Commission is not obligated to take action simply because the matter has already been agendized to the City Council. He stated that staff could reagendize the matter for City Council consideration at a later meeting.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Kurt Nelson (representing JCC Homes) 3480 Torrance Blvd., Torrance. He briefly recapped the changes made to the project since starting on September 25. He noted the reduction in the home size, the homes on lots 4, 5, and 6 have been redesigned to become single story residences, increased the side yard setbacks on the easterly boundary to approximately 26 to 28 feet, and lowered the proposed residence on lot 9 by 8 feet to be 16 feet above grade. He felt that he could lower the pad of the lot by another foot, as requested by staff. Mr. Nelson used a display board to show the layout of the proposed project and how it impacts the surrounding neighborhoods. He stated that he had spoken with a representative from California Water Service Company who had indicated they would have no objection to a condition that would require them or them working with the new HOA so that the existing foliage is maintained. He gave a brief overview of the proposed landscape plan and how this landscape would address the view concerns. Mr. Nelson stated that he has provided the revision to the site plan and landscape plan to staff for any residents to review, has met with a number of the homeowners, and has attempted to meet with others.

Craig Webber 950 Santiago Rd., Long Beach stated he was the landscape architect for the project. He distributed a board which he felt better displayed the proposed landscape plan.

Harold Turley 5814 Scotwood Drive stated his objection to the project has been the size and location of the proposed structures. His preference would be for the project to go away, however short of that he stated he would find himself agreeable to the project as it has been modified if two specific issues can be handled to his satisfaction. The first issue was his channel and island view, which is about 30 degrees. He asked that the entire view lane be flagged at the proposed height of 16 feet prior to the approval of the project. He would like to be able to completely see the impact as opposed to trying to guess at it. The second request he made was for a provision for future events that would affect his views, such as trees and shrubs, that may grow to exceed 16 feet. He felt it was important that this be done in such a fashion so that the enforcement not fall to him as the homeowner. He did not want to be burdened with the process of filing papers with the City or having to sue his neighbors.

Chairman Lyon stated there was flagging existing for lots 4, 5, and 6. He asked Mr. Turley what area he was asking be flagged. He stated that the area flagged represents the highest view obstruction and there was no higher ridgeline that was not already flagged.

Mr. Turley did not realize that the existing flagging represented the highest ridgelines.

Leo Lawson 5827 Sunmist Drive stated that the approximate 500 homes in the surrounding area of the project have to use the intermediate school grounds as a park. His concern is now that the school is in use, there is not any green space for use as a park. He proposed the 4.99 acres become a park to service the Rancho Palos Verdes residents of the area. He suggested the California Water Service Company could sell the land at a discount to the City so that the City could then build a park. He distributed photographs taken from his home which showed the ridgelines of the proposed residences. He noted that the land behind his home where these residences were to be built slopes up 35 feet. He stated that adding another 16 feet on the slope will then have him looking at 50 feet of mortar and dirt. He stated the proposed homes look down into his daughter’s bedroom window and plate glass window in the master bathroom. He felt the loss of privacy would result in a loss of property value to his home. He felt the California Water Service Company has violated the public trust that has been held with this community by the inception of the sub-division. He felt the integrity of the reservoir could be compromised by grading and the additional weight of the proposed homes. He did not think the developer had done any geologic studies to ensure the integrity of the reservoir and requested the Commission require the developer do such soil studies to ensure the south wall of the reservoir not be compromised. He felt the 4.99 acres needs to be under the control of the City so that it will be protected against any terrorist attempt to poison the water or affect the integrity of the reservoir. He requested the Planning Commission do a feasibility study researching the possibility of the Water Company selling the 4.99 acres at a discount for the development of a park.

Commissioner Long began by stating that the Planning Commission has no authority to purchase anything. He asked Mr. Lawson if any of the trees in the photograph distributed were on his property.

Mr. Lawson answered that all of the trees were on the California Water Service Company property.

Commissioner Long asked Mr. Lawson what he would do if tomorrow the Water Service Company decided they didn’t want the trees and cut them all down.

Mr. Lawson answered that he would enjoy a view and would not have people peering down into his daughter’s bedroom. He added that he realized the Planning Commission did not have the authority to purchase property, however they did have the ability to present recommendations to the City Council.

Chairman Lyon stated that he did not agree with much of what Mr. Lawson said. He stated the job of the Planning Commission was to address applications before them from the property owner. He stated that no Commissioner had a right to tell a property owner what they wished they would do with the property. He felt the applicant was trying to do everything he could to try to enhance Mr. Lawson’s privacy. He stated that the California Water Service site was at one time a ball field and the reason the ball field was taken away was because of objections from the neighbors in Mesa Palos Verdes to the noise the ball field created. Therefore, he did not agree that a park was a useful addition to the neighborhood.

Commissioner Long added that the Planning Commission has never withheld a permit application in order to compel the property owner to sell the land to the City at a discount, and the suggestion to do so is a very dangerous suggestion.

Commissioner Cartwright asked staff if there has been geologic studies done on the issue of the integrity of the water reservoir.

Senior Planner Fox stated that one of the required elements for a complete application for a subdivision is that there has to be geology reports submitted and approved by the City’s geotechnical consultant. He stated that there were several reports submitted to the City and approved and the city’s consultant has visited the site and is aware of the underground reservoir. He stated that there will be additional geologic reports submitted before any grading or building can begin.

Carolynn Tuttle 29541 Oceanport Road distributed a photograph she had taken to the Planning Commission and stated that her view would be significantly impacted. She stated that the flags up now are only along the top of the front of the ridgeline and do not clearly show how her view will be impacted. She requested that the ridgeline be continued so she could access her view impact. She agreed that lot 9 should be lowered one more foot, but felt it could be lowered even further. She asked about the chimney in the plans and noted that it was now in the position to cause the greatest impact on her view of Catalina. She requested that in addition to flagging the entire ridgeline, the developer also flag where the chimney will be located. She stated she was still very alarmed that the City would considered placing expensive homes on the top of a large water reservoir.

Ray Mathys 5738 Whitecliff Drive stated that an approximate 20-foot landscape buffer was proposed by the applicants to provide a privacy screen between the homes in the proposed development and the existing homes in Mesa Verde that back up to the project. He felt this proposal could work provided that the landscaping is properly and continually maintained in accordance with the approved landscape plan. He stated that in order to do so, the HOA must have the authority to enter onto the land. He stated that the most effective way to do this was to include the 20-foot strip of land located along the east and south side of the tract as part of the common area and owned by the homeowners association. He acknowledged that the problem with this approach was that it would reduce the size of the lot adjoining the common area. Therefore, an easement dedicated to the HOA delineating the bounds of the proposed landscape buffer area that would provide the Association with the right to enter onto the area for maintenance purposes would provide the same assurances that the work could and would be performed. Such an easement would be shown on a recorded tract map and made enforceable through the Conditional Use Permit and the Association recorded legal document.

Linda Navarro 12 Seaview Drive, Rolling Hills Estates, stated she was the president of Seaview Villas HOA and represented 68 homeowners. She explained that the only concern of the HOA was lot 9, which is adjacent to their property. She stated that some of the previous concerns have already been met, however they still requested that the pad be lowered on lot 9 by 2 feet rather than 1 foot. She also requested moving the home 15 feet from the property line rather than the current 10 feet, as it was a privacy issue.

James Demarais stated he was a land use attorney representing some of the homeowners. He noted that there was no current legal action pending and that they were simply trying to work out an amiable solution to the matter. He stated that the zoning was inconsistent with the General Plan. He read a portion of a California Supreme Court case "Planning and zoning law does not contemplate the General Plan to be amended to conform to zoning ordinances. The tail does not wag the dog. The General Plan is a charter to which the ordinances must conform." He further quoted: "The unrestricted amendments of the General Plan to conform to zoning changes destroy the General Plan as a tool for the comprehensive development of the community as a whole." He stated that in this case the General Plan designates the area as Infrastructure Facility. He stated the zoning ordinances zones the area residential. Therefore, he felt the zoning ordinance was invalid and the area was therefore zoned Infrastructure Facility as defined by the General Plan. In addition, he felt the environmental issues were unresolved. Primarily, he noted the reservoir has a history of leakage and he did not think there has been any articulation of the specific steps taken to maintain the integrity of the reservoir. He stated that the according to the geology reports, there seems to be an unresolved issue as to what the conclusion is regarding the integrity of the reservoir. He felt that at this stage, no action should be taken on this project and if any action should be taken it should be that the Planning Commission recommend denial of the project. He added that he had concerns regarding Brown Act issues. He noted that there was a City Council hearing set for this project on December 7 and the Code provides for a 10-day appeal period. He felt due process was being cut down.

Commissioner Long asked Mr. Demarais if the Planning Commission conditions the approval of the project on the City Council adopting an amendment to the General Plan if that would then address his concerns.

Mr. Demarais answered that the approach would address his concerns regarding the zoning inconsistency.

Commissioner Long asked if the specific environmental concern was the proximity of the homes to the reservoir.

Mr. Demarais stated the homeowners particular concern was that at the current time the reservoir was in a potentially dangerous condition and that this project poses a serous threat to the health and safety of the community. He stated he was asking for, at a minimum, a continuance in order to investigate the environmental impact more seriously.

Bob Shirley 29635 Stonecrest Road acknowledged that JCC Homes has made efforts and progress in dealing with height, view, and buffering issues. He did not feel the density and setback issues had been dealt with. He asked the Planning Commission recommend a minimum 1/3 acre or 14,000 square foot lots so that the houses will not have the appearance of a Torrance Anastasi type of project. He proposed a recommendation be made to enforce the RS-4 setback requirements so the houses will not be right on top of one another. He stated that when the developer reduced the house size to single story he effectively increased the foundation size because all of the living space is now on a single story. He also felt that the developer’s environmental investigation was incomplete and inadequate at this time. He was very concerned with the loss of his privacy and property value. He further felt that the construction noise and dirt would be intolerable to the surrounding neighborhoods.

Charles Joo 5840 Scotwood Drive also acknowledged the willingness of JCC Homes to work with the neighbors. However, he felt more time was needed for the neighbors and JCC homes to work out some of the outstanding issues and asked that the Planning Commission continue the item to a later date.

Commissioner Cartwright asked Mr. Joo what specific issues he felt needed to be addressed.

Mr. Joo answered that privacy issues, decrease in property values, and inconsistent zoning.

Commissioner Cartwright asked Mr. Joo to point out where his home was located.

Mr. Joo stated that his home was right next to lot 9.

Commissioner Cartwright asked Mr. Joo what his specific issues were.

Mr. Joo responded that he had privacy issues concerning the project. He stated that from his second story window he currently overlooked a vacant lot with little traffic.

Commissioner Long felt that Mr. Joo looked out over a tarred over area with carports and pipes and a lot of trucks entering and leaving the property. He wondered if having a home next to him would be more objectionable and cause more traffic.

Mr. Joo stated he did not mind the trucks coming in for the purpose of parking and that was limited to certain hours.

Commissioner Cartwright asked Mr. Joo what he would like to see done that would ensure his privacy.

Mr. Joo stated that he was not arguing the right of the developer to build on their property. He was simply stating that he was used to having a vacant lot next to him. He stated he has a swimming pool that is right next to the proposed private driveway, which concerned him.

Commissioner Cartwright stated that there was nothing the Commission could do other than eliminate the private road that would satisfy Mr. Joo’s concerns.

Mr. Joo stated that eliminating the road would satisfy his concerns but he did not know if that would satisfy his neighbor’s concerns.

Lois Larue 3136 Barkentine Road stated she opposed the development of 10 lots on 4.99 acres. She did not think there was adequate room to build 10 lots on the site. She asked the Planning Commissioners to be visionaries and not approve the project.

Greg Johnson 29643 Stonecrest Road indicated on the map where his property was located and felt that there was not enough room between his house and the proposed houses that back up to Stonecrest. He was concerned with privacy, screening, and property values.

Commissioner Paulson asked Mr. Johnson what the separation was between his home and his neighbor to the side.

Mr. Johnson estimated approximately 30 feet. He noted that he does not enjoy his yard from the side yard but rather the backyard, which he considered his living space.


RECESS AND RECONVENE


At 9:50 p.m. the Planning Commission took a short recess to 10:00 p.m. at which time they reconvened.


CONTINUED BUSINESS (CONT)


Kurt Nelson
(in rebuttal) discussed the chimney in relationship to Mrs. Tuttle’s home. He stated he was willing to lower the grade of the pad an additional foot and the chimney could be lowered or placed in a location as long as it complied with the building code. He stated he would work with Mrs. Tuttle regarding the chimney. Regarding the issue of the reservoir, he stated he would like to have Mr. Jensen from California Water Service address those issue. He felt there had been a thorough review of the reservoir and added that he would not begin the project until all additional soils testing is done in association with the grading and foundations of the residences.

Commissioner Paulson asked if there was any cut involved on the slopes on the back property lines of lots 4, 5, and 6.

Mr. Nelson responded that to his knowledge there would be no cut at that area. Mr. Nelson stated he would address the privacy issues with Mr. Lawson but felt his landscape plan would provide a permanent screening. Regarding the zoning issue, Mr. Nelson felt that Commissioner Long’s suggestion to condition the approval contingent upon the City Council’s determination of a General Plan amendment was a good suggestion. He thanked Mr. Mathys for his suggestions and felt a dedication easement with enforcement rights was something that could and most likely would happen. He stated that he would be willing to lower the pad of lot 9 one more foot, but only if it was considered necessary. Mr. Nelson stated that the only setback exception he was requesting was between two of his own houses. He noted that in every other area he met or exceeded percentages of coverage and setbacks. He stated that if Mr. Johnson has room on his property, he would be more than willing to plant a big box tree so that he can be comfortable. Mr. Nelson concluded by asking the Planning Commission make a decision on his project, one way or another, at this meeting.

Don Jensen stated he was the District Manager for the California Water Service Company stated that there are currently 2 reservoirs underground at the site. He stated that the walls of the reservoirs were built up to 24 inches in thickness and the life expectancy of these types of structures are measured in half centuries. He also noted that the reservoir was never filled above 95 percent or let below 45 percent. He stated that as a professional he had no problem with the structural integrity of the reservoirs.

Commissioner Cartwright asked when the reservoir was built.

Mr. Jensen responded that the reservoir was built in 1965.

Commission Cartwright asked if there had ever been a situation at the site where the integrity of the reservoir had been compromised.

Mr. Jensen answered that there had not been any problems to his knowledge. He added that there was a maintenance program in place and the reservoir was inspected annually.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if there were other reservoirs of this type on the peninsula.

Mr. Jensen answered that there was one near the FAA radar site.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Paulson asked if reducing the pad of lot 9 an additional foot and changing the location of the chimney would address the concerns of the affected residents.

Senior Planner Fox did not think the chimney had any affect on the homes in Rolling Hills Estates. He stated that staff had visited the site and did not think there was much potential for privacy infringement, however lowering the lot one foot couldn’t hurt. He did not think that lowering the lot 2 feet would allow much more gain for those residents. With respect to the other side, he stated that the structure currently proposed was 16 feet in height, but in the interest of minimizing any potential view impairment it seems reducing the pad lot one foot would be enough to pull the ridgeline down to the point where it was essentially at the water line of Catalina Island and there would be no view impairment on Catalina. He stated that 2 feet would be better, but one foot would allow a clear view of the island. Regarding the chimney, he stated that it appeared rather large on the plans and by doing a quick scaling of the plans he felt the chimney may be lowered by as much as four feet and still comply with the building code requirements.

Commissioner Paulson asked about the idea of a common area and the homeowner’s association control over landscape maintenance and if this had been done in any other developments in the City.

Director/Secretary Rojas answered that he believed it had been done for the Island View tract and it has been successful.

Commissioner Paulson asked if all of the proposed homes were within their required lot coverage.

Senior Planner Fox answered that all of the lots were with the required lot coverage, which is 50 percent.

Chairman Lyon felt that staff recommendations for the proposed project made a lot of sense. He felt the applicant has worked very hard to accommodate the requests of the neighbors. He felt there had been a number of requests, some of which were very reasonable and some of which are not reasonable. He stated the developer had done a good job in trying to do what he could to make this development compatible with the area. He stated that everyone gets used to living in an area that has certain features, but people have a right to develop their property. He understood that it is very disappointing to lose a view, however the City has a code that is very specific on what is a protected view and the Planning Commission is obligated to follow that code. He felt there were no violations to that code in this proposed development and everything seemed to be reasonable and within the code.

Commissioner Long also supported the staff’s recommendation. He felt that all requirements needed for the Planning Commission to issue a permit have been met. He stated that if there was an issue where someone felt the density of the development was inappropriate, the Planning Commission does not have the authority to change the zoning and change the density of the development. In particular, he stated that the Commission cannot improperly and unreasonably withhold approval from the property owner for the purpose of essentially extorting the property owner into selling the property to the City at a discount. He felt that this particular developer has been one of the most cooperative before the Commission. He acknowledged that the developer could not meet all of everyone’s concerns, however he has met all of the concerns that this Commission has the power to make him.

Commissioner Cartwright commended the applicant for working with the neighbors and the Commission and agreed with the comments of Chairman Lyon and Commissioner Long. He stated that revised plans show the house sizes have been significantly reduced, all of the two-story homes have been changed to single-story homes, the setbacks have been significantly increased, and the landscape plans call for retention of mature foliage where possible and to add additional plantings to ensure privacy. That, along with the staff recommendation to limit the height of the chimney, to require foliage be maintained at a maximum of 8 feet, and to regulate the HOA to maintain foliage convinced Mr. Cartwright that the development meets the findings for a tract map, a Conditional Use Permit, and a Grading Permit. He wanted to make sure, however, that the Planning Commission conditions the approval so that the pad on lot 9 is lowered an additional foot and the planting along the south side is sufficient to screen the homes and the foliage is maintained at the specified height.

Commissioner Mueller stated he was initially concerned with the lot density issue, but realized there was nothing the Planning Commission could do based on the fact that it met the RS-4 criteria. He too felt the developer made a concerted effort to address that issue in a different way, perhaps, than what the neighbors might think is the best way. However, he felt the proposed plan best serves the immediate neighborhood. He felt some of the setbacks might be a little small, but again they were within the standards of the development code. He was pleased that the developer was willing to lower the pad by one foot on lot 9, which would help alleviate some of the concerns of the immediate neighbors.

Commissioner Paulson complimented the developer on being responsive once the issues had been brought to his attention. However, he felt if the developer had talked with the property owners before he filed the application there may not have been the need for three hearings. He stated his concerns were addressed as long as the right conditions were included that guarantee the issue of protection of privacy at the time of installation of trees at both the south and east side of the project.

Commissioner Cartwright moved to adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-44 recommending adoption of a Mitigated Negative Declaration and adopt P.C. Resolution NO. 2001-45 thereby approving the staff recommendations with the following conditions: Lower the pad on lot 9 by one foot, ensure the trees that are planted on the south and east side of the project are sufficient to provide adequate privacy at the time of installation, and an easement on the property that will be conditioned to ensure that the homeowners association has access to maintain the landscaping.

Commissioner Long referred to page 15, condition no. 25, and felt that a reference should be added that the landscaping plans will also take into account view concerns by selecting from the trees or plantings recommended by the city as appropriate and as reviewed and approved by the Director. He also felt that compliance with the CC&R’s should be incorporated into the conditions of approval.

Commissioner Cartwright agreed to the revisions to the motion.

Commissioner Long seconded the motion. The motion passed, (5-0).


2. Coastal Permit No. 170/172 and Grading Permit No. 2260/2281: Eric Johnson (owner) 2 Yacht Harbor Drive


Senior Planner Fox presented the staff report. He described the revised project, noting that the size of the project was now smaller, the maximum ridgeline of the house has been lowered two feet, and the entire house has been slightly realigned on the site. He noted that a portion of the detached garage would encroach into the required 20-foot front setback from the realigned roadway. Therefore, staff recommended the Commission require the garage be modified to meet the 20-foot setback imposed. He stated that the total grading quantity has decreased overall, however the amount of export has remained about the same. Mr. Fox stated that staff has reassessed the previous analysis of view impacts of the project based upon the silhouette and with respect to public views from Palos Verdes Drive South the revised residence would encroach a maximum of approximately 3 feet into the 2-degree down arc zone discussed in the City’s Coastal Specific Plan. However, the revised structure is also below the 16-foot height limit. He explained that the City has generally permitted structures that are not within a specific view corridor and comply with the 16-foot height limit to encroach into the 2 degree down arc zone. He stated that staff believes the public views for motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians will not be significantly impaired by the revised project. Mr. Fox stated that the proposed project was now at 10-feet above finished grade, which is 6 feet lower than the 16 foot height limit. He stated that the structure would block some portions of the private ocean views from homes in the Seaview community; staff did not feel it was tall enough to encroach into the view of Catalina Island. Therefore staff believes that the revised project and related structures will not adversely affect the use of neighboring properties any more significantly than a 16-foot tall structure would. Addressing the issue as to whether or not the project would require a height variation, Mr. Fox explained that in every case both with and without the road realignment and measured from existing or proposed finished grade the revised project does not exceed the 16-foot height limit on either an upslope or downslope lot. Therefore, it was staff’s position that a height variation was not required for the project. He explained that staff expanded the comparison of the development intensity and neighborhood compatibility of the project to include only the truly useable area of the flat upper portion of the site. Considering the significantly larger lot size, the scale of the proposed house in proportion to the lot is still about the same as those in the surrounding neighborhoods. In addition, the revised house is still set well apart from the surrounding neighborhood so bulk and mass does not seem in direct context with surrounding homes. Therefore, staff believes the revised project is compatible with the scale and character of surrounding neighborhoods. He stated that staff believes all required findings can be made for the Coastal Permit and Grading Permit and therefore recommends approval of the project.

Commissioner Cartwright asked if neighborhood compatibility was a required finding for this project.

Senior Planner Fox stated that it was a finding required for the Grading Permit.

Chairman Lyon opened the public hearing.

Eric Johnson (applicant) 92 Yacht Harbor Drive explained that after listening to the concerns of the neighbors and the Planning Commission it was clear that the major issues were the overall mass of the house and height of the structure. He felt that the revised project addressed these concerns. He was not sure what else they could do with this proposal. He stated he was willing to move the garage out of the setback area. Mr. Johnson stated he and his architect have worked very hard to minimize impacts, accommodate concerns, and to provide a proposal which was completely conforming to the rules of the City.

Ted McCowan 4212 Admirable Drive stated that he was never too concerned about how the project would impact him until the silhouette was erected at the site. He explained that he has a view of Catalina Island as well as a view of the entire Portuguese Bend Cove. He stated that the flags indicate that the guesthouse will completely block his view of the cove. He felt the guesthouse could be moved slightly or lowered, as it appears to be a two-story structure.

Commissioner Cartwright asked Mr. McCowan if the Transamerica project would have blocked any portion of his view.

Mr. McCowan responded that he never determined if the project would block his view or not.

Debbie Huff 4245 Palos Verdes Drive South stated that the guesthouse, which is the closest to Palos Verdes Drive South. She did not understand the rational as to why the maximum height of the structure could change when the location of the structure changed. She discussed landscaping and felt that there were currently many trees and shrubs on the property over 16-feet in height. She also stated that as she walks along Palos Verdes Drive South the entire amount of the water between the cliffs and Catalina Island would no longer be visible to the public. She noted that once the Ocean Trails houses are built that ocean area would also be blocked. To alleviate some of the concerns of the neighborhood she suggested changing the zoning to RSA-5, which is one house per five acres, which seems to be more appropriate for this site. She also suggested that there were extremely attractive tax benefits available that are offered to those putting land aside in perpetuity as open space.

Diane Weinberger 4206 Exultant Drive stated she was president of the Seaview Residents Association. She stated that she was representing residents who had major concerns over vegetation. She felt there was a lot of vegetation on the lot that should have been trimmed over the years that is causing view impacts. She requested that if the project is approved the vegetation is held to very strict minimums to be as low as possible.

Eloise Radford 135 Seawall Road stated she was in favor of the project. She stated that if she were in the position of having that piece of property and the means to develop it, she would hope that she would do as the Johnsons have done and work closely with the neighbors and build something very desirable in the neighborhood. She felt the Johnsons have given quite a bit and it was now time for the neighborhood to allow the Johnsons to start their project. She stated that there would never be 100 percent fulfillment on everyone’s part. She felt the neighbors had to always realize that something would eventually be built on this vacant lot.

Cathy French 4235 Palos Verdes Drive South stated that the guesthouse obscures a major portion of the cove view from her residence. She stated that since it was a guesthouse, she wondered why it couldn’t be lowered. She also felt that lowering the height of the guesthouse would substantially improve the view from Palos Verdes Drive South for the general public. She also discussed the vegetation and she too asked there be some condition of approval to keep the vegetation on the property as low as possible. She asked that there be some type of direct oversight during the building process to verify the grading height and pads before the structure is built. Finally, Ms. French stated that she was trusting the Johnsons integrity and character that what was being built on that property today was all that was being built there. She stated that she was loosing a substantial part of her view and did not want to loose more of it through a false sense of security that more could be built.

Cory Johnson 92 Yacht Harbor Drive stated he was in favor of the project. He stated that his family has reduced the size of the house by quite a bit, and his bedroom has already been cut in half. He stated he would like to live in his new house before he leaves for college.

Jill Carlton 4265 Palos Verdes Drive South stated she was grateful for the work the Johnsons have done to try to minimize the view impacts from the surrounding neighborhood. She stated that she had concerns regarding the vegetation on the property. She stated that she would prefer to have the view through of a chain link fence without the pilasters that have been recommended by staff.

Commissioner Cartwright asked staff what the maximum height of shrubbery was as defined by the code.

Senior Planner Fox stated that any foliage was allowed to grow to a height of 16 feet. He pointed out that in condition no. 20, with respect to the fencing along Palos Verdes Drive South, it specifically says that hedges and solid walls are not permitted. Condition No. 21 also limits the height of the trees and foliage to no more than 16 feet or the highest point of the structure, whichever is lower.

Commissioner Cartwright stated there were many ridgelines on this property and asked which one prevailed.

Senior Planner Fox answered that it would be the highest ridgeline, which is 228, the ridgeline of the main house.

Steve Carlton 4265 Palos Verdes Drive South stated that the new proposal has the main house moved back to attach with what is now the study, and wondered if had the main house had stayed closer to the original area and the new study moved slightly, if the new ridgeline would have dropped from 228 to possible 226 or 225. He stated that the importance of the height of the ridgeline was that the foliage was allowed to grow to 16 feet or the ridgeline of 228. He stated that it would only take a 3 to 5 foot bush on the west side of the property near Palos Verdes Drive South to totally obliterate the lighthouse, Long Point, and Abalone Cove. He noted that was why it was important to have specific conditions included regarding landscaping and foliage.

Lenee Bilski 4255 Palos Verdes Drive South asked the Commission not to decide this matter this evening, but to continue the public hearing. She stated that from her home she could look out across the site to the scrub along the very edge of the cliff. She stated it was very difficult to see the actual topographical map and the feet above mean high tide. She asked for a map of the natural grade so that she could more easily determine what the grade actually was, when the survey was done, what scale was used and what the reference points were for the natural grade. She was very concerned about the public view impairments and noted that the General Plan divides visual aspects into views and vistas. She stated that the staff made their recommendation based on vista corridors, but she explained that views could be continuous as viewed from along a public corridor. She stated that views have a broad focal point which has unlimited arc and depth. She discussed the Coastal Specific Plan and its discussion of view corridors. She felt that there was a public viewing point from all along Palos Verdes Drive South that should be protected.

Commissioner Paulson asked Ms. Bilski how she would like to see the property developed.

Ms. Bilski responded that there was enough property to develop it so that it wouldn’t block the public views as much as the flagging makes it visually apparent that it does. She felt the house could be adjusted and moved back toward Palos Verdes Drive South and possible tilted in a different direction.

Chairman Lyon stated that staff recommends compliance with the 20-foot setback from the street, which would require Mr. Johnson to move the subterranean garage slightly. He asked Mr. Johnson if that would be a problem.

Mr. Johnson stated that was not something he had studied, but felt it could be accomplished.

Chairman Lyon felt the garage was entirely underground and therefore was a subterranean garage in a setback area, and therefore did not require a Variance.

Director/Secretary Rojas stated that according to the Development Code, structures that are completely subterranean do not have to meet the setbacks. In looking at the garage objectively, staff could not make the determination that the garage was completely subterranean. The Planning Commission could, however disagree and take the position that the garage is substantially subterranean and does not have to meet the setbacks.

Chairman Lyon did not think there was any impact on anything exterior, whether in the setback area or not, and could not see any practical objection to encroaching into the setback area.

Commissioner Long asked Mr. Johnson if he would be agreeable to some sort of condition designed to protect the neighbors concerns regarding views such as a condition that all foliage be maintained at an elevation of 226 or below.

Mr. Johnson answered that he would be more than happy to agree not to plant anything along Palos Verdes Drive South. He stated that he had not yet worked out a landscape plan and expressed concern that he not be treated any differently than any other applicant in the City and their rights to landscape. He explained that his intent in landscaping was to actually open up area and have some areas with trees. He stated that he would like to have a few trees on the property.

Commissioner Mueller asked about the function of the fence along Palos Verdes Drive South and if Mr. Johnson was required to maintain that fence.

Mr. Johnson answered that the fence serves as security for the gated community at the Portuguese Bend Club. He stated he was obligated to maintain the fence.

Commissioner Mueller asked if was possible to maintain the security for the Portuguese Bend Club at a lower elevation, further down on the property.

Mr. Johnson felt it might be possible to drop the fence down lower on the site. He stated he would do everything possible to make the fence as low as possible and still maintain the integrity of the private community. He stated he would be very hesitant to agree to something specific without having consulted his Portuguese Bend Club neighbors.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Paulson asked about the 16-foot high guesthouse and why that was allowed.

Senior Planner Fox answered that the Code allows for a guesthouse to be 16-feet in height. He stated that there had not been a significant change in the actual configuration of the structure itself, rather the use of the structure had changed. He stated that the actual structure had only increased in height by six inches.

Commissioner Paulson was concerned about how to construct a condition regarding the height of vegetation that was responsive to the concerns of the neighbors yet was not unduly restrictive for the property owner.

Commissioner Long suggested a condition that stated that no new foliage should grow in excess of 16 feet.

Commissioner Paulson asked if there was any way to reorient the placement of the guesthouse that would reduce the massing and reduce the view impairments from the neighboring properties

Chairman Lyon re-opened the public hearing.

Mr. Johnson felt that reorientation for the guesthouse was possible, but was concerned that reorienting the guesthouse may transfer any view impairment from one property to another.

Chairman Lyon closed the public hearing.

Chairman Lyon felt the current proposal presented a reasonable balance between preserving the views of the neighbors and retaining a view and the aesthetics of the project.

Commissioner Cartwright agreed that the last to build has the same rights as the first to build. He stated that there was no way to build on this property without affecting somebody’s views and this was not a view corridor. He felt that what was being proposed was far superior to what was previously approved for Transamerica.

Chairman Lyon asked if the project as currently proposed violated any of the development code requirements.

Senior Planner Fox stated that the currently proposed project met all required standards of the Development Code.

Commissioner Long was convinced that the view impairment would not be significant, given the overall development, provided that certain conditions were imposed. However, he was concerned with the required finding that for new single-family residences the grading and/or related construction is compatible with immediate neighborhood characteristics. He then discussed how neighborhood characteristics were defined in the Development Code Section 17.02.04a6. He felt that the characteristics regarding front yard setbacks were satisfied and did not believe the requirement for compatible architectural styles and materials was satisfied and he was not convinced that the house was compatible in regards to scale. He asked if staff had ever looked at homes on both sides of a major arterial when considering neighborhood compatibility.

Director/Secretary Rojas recalled a similar property on Palos Verdes Drive West adjacent to the Lunada Point development where there was a very large home proposed. He explained that since there were no large homes adjacent to it staff did compare it with homes across Palos Verdes Drive West.

Commissioner Paulson stated that he found it hard to believe that the residents on Palos Verdes Drive South would rather see a subdivision developed on the lot with the approximate same size structures developed on the lot. He stated that he would hate to say that the Planning Commission was not going to approve the project because of neighborhood compatibility with some scenario that was illogical.

Commissioner Long felt that Commissioner Paulson was basically saying that this proposal was in a neighborhood of one and he was not necessarily disagreeing with that statement.

Chairman Lyon moved to adopt P.C. Resolution No. 2001-46 thereby approving Coastal Permit No. 170/172 and Grading Permit No. 2260/2281 as presented by staff with the following modifications: 1) Add to Condition No. 20 the requirement that new vegetation shall not significantly impair views from surrounding properties; and, 2) Amend the condition to say that the above ground portion of the garage shall comply with the 20-foot front yard setback.

Commissioner Mueller noted that one of the findings for the Coastal Permit was that new development should be required to provide public access from Palos Verdes Drive South to the shoreline. He asked why this new development was not required to provide public access to the beach.

Senior Planner Fox explained that there is an exception to the public access requirement when public access is provided nearby. He stated that there was public access to the ocean from Ocean Trails and there was public access available to all City property to the west at Sacred Cove and Abalone Cove Beach Park.

Commissioner Paulson discussed the fencing along Palos Verdes Drive South and the proposed pilasters and if the fence should remain as conditioned in the staff report.

Commissioner Mueller felt that pilasters should be prohibited along the fence.

Chairman Lyon agreed to the amendment that no pilasters will allowed in the fence along Palos Verdes Drive West.

Commissioner Cartwright seconded he motion. The motion passed (5-0).

Commissioner Long explained that his vote in no way set any sort of precedent, as he concluded that this house was in a neighborhood of one.


ADJOURNMENT


The meeting was adjourned at 12:40 a.m.

 


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



CONTINUED BUSINESS:(NO ITEMS)



PUBLIC HEARINGS:








4. HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 938: Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey Younggren, (applicant), 4362 Exultant Drive. (BY)



TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: DECEMBER 11, 2001

SUBJECT: HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 938
SITE PLAN REVIEW NO. 9202

ADDRESS: 4362 EXULTANT DRIVE

APPLICANT:
LANE BUILDING DESIGNS
500 S. SEPULVEDA BLVD
MANHATTAN BEACH, CA 90266

PHONE: 310-374-2441

LANDOWNER:
MR. & MRS. JEFFREY YOUNGGREN
4362 EXULTANT DRIVE
RANCHO PALOS VERDES, CA 90275

PHONE: 310-377-9447

STAFF: BEILIN YU

COORDINATOR: ASSISTANT PLANNER

REQUESTED ACTION: A REQUEST TO ALLOW THE CONSTRUCTION OF A 1,071 SQUARE FOOT FIRST-STORY ADDITION AND THE CONSTRUCTION OF A NEW 1,251 SQUARE FOOT SECOND-STORY ADDITION TO AN EXISTING SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENCE. THE ADDITIONS ARE PROPOSED AT A HEIGHT OF 22.41’ AS MEASURED FROM THE FINISH GRADE ADJACENT TO THE LOWEST FOUNDATION (94.02’) TO THE HIGHEST RIDGE (116.43’), AND 19.28’, AS MEASURED FROM THE HIGHEST ELEVATION TO BE COVERED BY STRUCTURE (97.15’) TO THE HIGHEST RIDGE.

RECOMMENDATION: ADOPT P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-___; DENYING WITHOUT PREJUDICE HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 938 AND APPROVING, WITH CONDITIONS, SITE PLAN REVIEW NO. 9202.

REFERENCES:

ZONING: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL – RS-4

LAND USE: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL

CODE SECTIONS: 17.02 and 17.48

GENERAL PLAN: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL

TRAILS PLAN: N/A

SPECIFIC PLAN: N/A

CEQA: CATEGORICALLY EXEMPT (CLASS 1)

ACTION DEADLINE: DECEMBER 30, 2001

BACKGROUND

On May 15, 2001, the City Council approved Landslide Moratorium Exception Permit No. 40 to allow the submittal of the necessary Planning Department applications to request approval for a 597 square foot garage, 474 square foot first story addition, and a 1,251 square foot second story addition.

On July 26, 2001, Height Variation Permit No. 938 was submitted to the Planning, Building and Code Enforcement Department for processing. The request is for the construction of a 1,071 square foot first-story addition, which includes a 474 square foot garage, and the construction of a new 1,251 square foot second story addition.

The application was deemed incomplete on August 23, 2001 due to insufficient information on the submitted plans. Upon the submittal of needed information on October 30, 2001, the application package was deemed complete on November 1, 2001. The required public hearing notice was sent to 58 property owners within the 500 foot radius on November 1, 2001 and published in the Peninsula News on November 3, 2001. During the thirty (30) day noticing period the City received one correspondence pertaining to the proposed project

SITE DESCRIPTION

The subject property is located at 4362 Exultant Drive, located at the corner of Exultant Drive and Dauntless Drive, in the southern portion of the City. The parcel is a rectangular shaped lot with the front property line measuring 113.31’, the interior side property line measuring 110.64’, the rear property line measuring 113.00’ and the street side property line measuring 91.00’ for an overall lot area measuring 12,000 square feet. The parcel is zoned single-family residential, RS-4, and is currently improved with a single-story 2,277 square foot single-family residence, with a 467 square foot detached two-car garage, for an overall structure size of 2,744 square feet.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The applicants propose to construct a 1,071 square foot first story addition and to construct a new 1,251 square foot second story addition. This would bring the total square footage of the dwelling to 5,066 square feet (including garage area).

Specifically, the applicants propose to construct an addition to the dining room located to the rear of the existing residence, an addition to the kitchen and nook area located in the front of the existing residence, an addition to the south side of the residence where the stairs will be located, an addition between the existing detached garage and residence and an addition to the front of the existing detached garage. The proposed second story addition will be located above the existing detached garage, above the addition between the detached garage and the residence and above the addition located in front of the detached garage.

The proposed two story portion of the additions are proposed to be constructed at a height of 22.41’, as measured from the finished grade adjacent to the lowest foundation (94.02’) to the highest ridge (116.43’), and 19.28’, as measured from the highest elevation to be covered by structure (97.15’) to the highest ridge. The proposed first story portion of the addition is proposed to be located under the existing ridgeline, therefore not exceeding the existing height of the structure.

The proposed addition to the dining room area, the addition to the kitchen and nook, and the addition for the stairs will be reviewed under the Site Plan Review application, since these portions of the project do not exceed the 16 foot height limit. Whereas the new second story addition and the first story additions, which will be covered by the new second story addition, will be reviewed under the Height Variation application.

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 developed with a single-family residence and the proposed project consists of a minor alteration to the existing structure on the subject property, with no significant additional site disturbance.

CODE CONSIDERATION AND ANALYSIS

A. HEIGHT VARIATION

The RS-4 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. The portion of the proposed project that exceeds the maximum height of 16 feet, is subject to the Height Variation application process.

A Height Variation application must be reviewed by the Planning Commission or Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement, depending on the location and square footage of the second story. If the proposed second story: 1) extends closer than 25 feet from the front or street-side property line; 2) exceeds 75% of the first story footprint area (residence and attached garage); 3) covers 60% or more of the existing garage footprint; or 4) has the potential to significantly impair a view as determined by the Director based on an initial site visit, the application must be reviewed and approved by the Planning Commission. Planning Commission review is required for this application since the proposed second story covers 60% or more of the existing garage footprint and the proposed second story extends closer than 25’ from the front property line.

In considering a Height Variation application, Section 17.02.040(C)(1)(e) requires that the Planning Commission make the nine findings in reference to the property and project under consideration (the City's Municipal Code language appears in boldface type, followed by Staff's analysis in normal type).

  1. That the applicant has complied with the Early Neighborhood Consultation process established by the City.
  2. The applicant completed the Early Neighborhood Consultation process by canvassing the property owners within 500 feet of the subject property and informing them of the proposed addition. The applicant is required under the Early Neighborhood Consultation process to obtain signatures of at least 60% of the property owners within a 500 foot radius or signatures of at least 25% of the property owners within 500 feet and at least 70% within 100 feet of the subject property. Staff reviewed the number of property owners that were consulted and found that the applicant complies with the early neighbor consultation because signatures of 33 of the 56 properties were obtained within the 500’ radius, which is 59%, and 10 of the 12 properties within the 100’ radius, which is 83%. Therefore, the applicant has complied with the Early Neighborhood Consultation process.

  3. That 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 areas.
  4. There are no public viewing areas identified in the City's General Plan within the vicinity of the subject property. In addition, the subject property is not located within the Coastal Specific Plan area. Therefore, Staff determined that the proposed structure will not significantly impair a view from a City designated viewing area.

  5. That the proposed structure is not located on a ridge or promontory.
  6. The subject property is not located on a ridge, which is defined as an elongated crest or linear series of crest of hills, bluffs or highlands. In addition, the subject property is not located on a promontory, which is defined as a prominent mass of land that overlooks or projects onto a lowland or body of water on at least two sides. Therefore, Staff determined that the proposed structure is not located on a ridge or promontory.

  7. That the proposed structure when considered exclusive of foliage, does not significantly impair a view from the viewing area of another parcel.
  8. A "viewing area" as defined in the Section 17.02.040(A)(15) of the City's Municipal Code means that area of a structure (excluding bathrooms, hallways, garages or closets) or that area of a lot (excluding setback areas) where the owner and City determine the best and most important view exists. In structures, the finished floor elevation of any viewing area must be at or above existing grade adjacent to the exterior wall of the part of the building nearest to said viewing area.

    Additionally, according to the Development Code and the Height Variation Guidelines, a "protected viewing area" is usually established from the primary living spaces, such as the living room, dining room, kitchen or family room, located on the level nearest grade. The only exception is when a residence is designed so that the primary living spaces are contained within the upper level of the structure.

    The residential structures within the immediate vicinity located on Exultant Drive are constructed on pad lots at equal or slightly higher elevations than the subject property. The majority of the homes within the surrounding neighborhood are single story, with the primary "viewing areas" located on the lower level. Since the building pads are graded so that they gradually increase in height from Schoonner Drive to Dauntless Drive, the homes on Dauntless Drive are built on pad elevations that are higher than the subject property with their ocean view oriented toward the south and west in the direction of the subject property and proposed addition.

    Based on a site inspection conducted by Staff on November 26, 2001, Staff believes that the proposed addition will significantly impair the view from 4343 Dauntless Drive exclusive of foliage. The residence at 4343 Dauntless Drive is located diagonally from the subject property with its ocean view oriented toward the subject property. Staff was not able to gain access to the interior of the residence, however, Staff analyzed the view impact from the outside of a window located on the front elevation, which appears to be the main viewing area of the residence. From this location, the residence has an ocean view over the roof lines of the properties located on 4361 Exultant Drive, 4354 Exultant Drive and more importantly over the applicant’s existing garage at 4362 Exultant Drive. The proposed second story addition will be located above and in front of the existing garage, therefore significantly impairing the view of the ocean from 4343 Dauntless Drive. (Photographs will be provided at the Planning Commission meeting). Because of the orientation and the pad elevation of the other homes located on Exultant Drive and on Dauntless Drive, the proposed project does not impair the views from the viewing areas of other homes in the immediate neighborhood.

    Based on the above analysis, Staff determined that the proposed addition will significantly impair a view from the viewing area of another parcel.

  9. That there is no significant cumulative view impairment caused by granting the application.
  10. As indicated in Finding No. 4 above, the residential structures within the immediate vicinity of the proposed project located on Dauntless Drive are constructed on pad lots at higher elevations than the properties located on Exultant Drive with ocean views oriented toward the south and west. Exclusive of foliage, the residence at 4343 Dauntless Drive has a view over the roof lines of the residences located on Exultant Drive. Therefore if other properties on Exultant Drive propose similar second story additions, Staff believes that such additions would result in significant cumulative view impairment from 4343 Dauntless Drive and most likely from other properties located on Dauntless Drive. Therefore, Staff believes that the proposed addition together with any future additions of the same nature will cause significant cumulative view impairment.

  11. That the structure is designed in such a manner as to minimize impairment of a view.
  12. As discussed in Finding No. 4 above, the residence at 4343 Dauntless Drive has an existing view over the existing garage and in the area in front of the garage of the applicant’s property. The first story addition is proposed to be located in front of the existing garage, and the proposed second story addition is proposed to be located above the entire first story addition and above the existing garage. As such, the second story addition is not designed in a manner to minimize the impairment of the view from the residence at 4343 Dauntless Drive.

    One way that the proposed second story addition may be re-designed to minimize impairment of view is by setting the second story back, away from the front property line, so that the second story is smaller in size and located behind the existing roof ridgelines, as viewed from the properties located on Dauntless Drive.

  13. That the proposed structure complies with all other Code requirements.
  14. Staff reviewed the proposed addition for compliance with the RS-4 Residential Development Standards as shown in the table below.

    Table 1

    DEVELOPMENT STANDARD

    REQUIREMENT

    EXISTING STRUCTURE

    PROPOSED ADDITIONS

    Front Yard Setback

    20’-0"

    19’-4"

    20’-0"

    Rear Yard Setback

    15’-0"

    28’-0"

    34’-5"

    Interior Side Yard Setback

    5’-0"

    4’-10"

    5’-0"

    Street Side Yard Setback

    10’-0"

    9’-8"

    ± 73’-6"

    Max. Lot Coverage

    50%

    38%

    41%

    Building Height

    16’/20’

    15.04’/18.17’

    19.28’/22.41’


    According to the above table, the existing structure is nonconforming as it does not comply with the front, street side and interior side setback requirements. However, the proposed additions have been designed to comply with all the setback requirements.

    In regards to lot coverage, the existing residence’s footprint is 2,277 square feet, the garage footprint is 467 square feet, and the existing deck located in the rear yard is 761 square feet for a total footprint of 3,505 square feet. The existing driveway and outside parking area is 1,023 square feet, for an existing total lot coverage calculation of 4,528 square feet, which is 38% of the 12,000 square foot lot. The proposed first story addition is proposed to be 1,071 square feet, and will partially encroach into the existing driveway location, thus reducing the existing driveway to 317 square feet. This will result in a total lot coverage calculation of 4,893 square feet, which is 41% of the 12,000 square foot lot. The maximum lot coverage allowed for properties located in the RS-4 zone is 50%, therefore the proposed structure will comply with the lot coverage requirement.

  15. That the proposed structure is compatible with the immediate neighborhood character.
  16. Staff analyzed the surrounding neighborhood to determine the compatibility of the proposed residence. In accordance with the Development Code’s definition of "neighborhood character", the analysis was based on the following criteria of review: the scale of the surrounding residences, architectural style, and front yard setbacks.

    To determine whether or not the proposed addition is compatible with the existing neighborhood character, Staff compared the project to existing structures within the immediate neighborhood, which is comprised of the 10 closest properties, as shown in Table 2 below.

    Table 2

    Address

    Lot Size*

    Structure Size (existing)

    No. of Stories

    Front Yard Setback

    4331 Dauntless Drive

    12,090 sq.ft.

    2,355 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4332 Dauntless Drive

    12,103 sq.ft.

    2,581 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4343 Dauntless Drive

    12,090 sq.ft.

    2,206 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4351 Dauntless Drive

    12,090 sq.ft.

    2,596 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4361 Dauntless Drive

    12,210 sq.ft.

    2,907 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4321 Exultant Drive

    12,000 sq.ft.

    2,816 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4334 Exultant Drive

    11,960 sq.ft.

    1,990 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4338 Exultant Drive

    12,010 sq.ft.

    2,934 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4348 Exultant Drive

    12,810 sq.ft.

    2,457 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4354 Exultant Drive

    12,060 sq.ft.

    2,961 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    Average

    12,142 sq.ft.

    2,580 sq.ft.

    One

    20’

    4362 Exultant Drive

    12,000 sq.ft.

    2,744 sq.ft.
    (existing w/ garage)

    One

    19’-4"

    5,066 sq.ft.
    (proposed w/ garage)

    Two

    19’-4"


    * The lot sizes indicated in this column are based on information obtained from the Los Angles County Tax Roll (TRW database).

    1) Scale of surrounding properties, including total square footage and lot coverage of the residence and all ancillary structures.

    According to the above table, the total structure sizes (including garage area) of the neighboring homes range from 1,990 square feet to 2,961 square feet, with an average size of 2,580 square feet for the ten (10) closest developed properties. As previously mentioned, the subject residence is currently 2,744 square feet (garage included). After the proposed addition is constructed, the total size of the structure (garage area included) will be 5,066 square feet. In relation to the neighboring properties, the subject residence will be approximately 2,486 square feet larger than the average structure size and will be 2,105 square feet greater than the largest home in the neighborhood (4354 Exultant Drive).

    Staff is of the opinion that the scale of the proposed residence is inconsistent with the scale found in the surrounding neighborhood because the proposed structure is almost twice as large as the residences found in the surrounding neighborhood. Additionally, the surrounding residences are mainly single story, with only one split level home located at 4343 Dauntless Drive. However, the split level residence located on Dauntless Drive is located under one roof, integrating the two story portion of the residence into the one story portion. However, the proposed second story will be located entirely over the single story portion and existing garage, creating a pop-up design. Furthermore, the exterior walls of the second story addition are not setback away from the exterior first-story walls, resulting in no articulation between the first and second stories. As a result, the apparent bulk and mass of the structure is very evident.

    Although the portion of the lot where the existing garage is located is lower than the portion of the lot where the main residence is located, and the second story addition is proposed to be located on the lower elevation portion of the lot, the adjacent residence (to the south) is constructed on a pad lot that is located at a slightly lower elevation and is a single story residence. Therefore the proposed second story addition will appear to be overshadowing the residence to the south and not compatible with the surrounding residences and the neighborhood character.

    Although the proposed lot coverage will comply with the code requirement, Staff is of the opinion that the proposed lot coverage will not be compatible with the lot coverage found in the surrounding neighborhood because the footprint of the proposed residence (3,815 square feet) will be approximately 1,200 square feet larger than the average footprint (2,580 square feet) of other residences found in the neighborhood, while the subject lot is approximately the same size as the average lot size found in the neighborhood. Therefore, the lot coverage will be approximately 11% larger than the average lot coverage found in the neighborhood.

    No accessory structures are proposed with this project, therefore this portion of this finding does not apply.

    2) Architectural styles, including facade treatment, structure height, open space between structure, roof designs, the apparent bulk and mass of the structure, number of stories, and building materials.

    The subject residence is located in a neighborhood comprised of other single-story residences. The surrounding homes consist mainly of stucco finish with wood siding or brick details. The roof material is mainly wood shake, rock roof, and red tile roof. The homes consist mainly of a combination of gable roofs with hip roofs and flat roofs.

    As discussed in Finding No.2 above, the proposed second story does not incorporate any articulation from the first story, creating a pop-up design, which is not found in the neighborhood, and makes the second story very apparent. Additionally, the lack of articulation increases the apparent bulk and mass of the structure, which is inconsistent with the design found in the surrounding homes.

    The existing structure has a stucco finish with wood siding and asphalt shingle roof material. The applicant is proposing stucco and custom veneer, which are finish materials found in the neighborhood. Therefore, the proposed finish materials will be consistent with the finish materials found in the surrounding neighborhood.

    As discussed in Finding No. 7 above, the proposed additions will comply with the required setback requirements for the RS-4 zone, and therefore will maintain adequate open space between the proposed additions and the property lines.

    3) Front yard setbacks

    The subject residence is located in the RS-4 zoning district which requires lots that were created prior to the City’s incorporation to maintain a twenty (20) foot front yard setback. The existing structure is setback nineteen (19) feet from the front property line. The proposed structure will maintain a front yard setback of twenty (20) feet, which meets the City’s minimum requirements. In terms of the immediate neighborhood, as shown in table 1, the surrounding properties are developed with an average of twenty (20) foot front yard setbacks. By maintaining the twenty (20) foot front yard setback, this project will comply with the Code requirement, as well as be consistent with the front yard setbacks found in the surrounding properties.

    Based on the analysis in Findings No. 1) and 2), Staff determined that the proposed addition will not be compatible with the existing neighborhood because the proposed structure will be out of scale compared to the scale of the surrounding homes, and the apparent mass and bulk of the proposed second story will not be compatible with the other single story homes found in the neighborhood.

  17. That the proposed structure does not result in an unreasonable infringement of privacy of the occupants of abutting residences.

The proposed second story addition will contain windows on the south side elevation, which will be facing the adjacent neighbor to the south, and will contain a second story balcony on the rear elevation, which will be facing the neighbor to the rear. Staff determined that the proposed structure will not result in an unreasonable infringement of privacy because the adjacent residence to the south contains a courtyard area in the side yard which does not appear to be used as a gathering area. The subject property currently contains a raised deck located in the rear yard. The deck is located between the residence and the top of the transitional slope which is located between the subject property and the property adjacent to the rear. The property adjacent to the rear is currently visible from the deck, and the second story balcony on the rear elevation will not increase the infringement of privacy to the property adjacent to the rear. As such, this finding can be adopted.

B. SITE PLAN REVIEW

As described in the Project Description section above, the additions to the kitchen, nook, dining room and the area for the stairs will be reviewed under the Site Plan Review application. The total square footage of the above mentioned additions will be approximately 150 square feet.

As discussed in Finding No. 7 above, the proposed additions comply with the setback, height and lot coverage requirements. Therefore, Staff recommends that the dining room, kitchen, nook, and stairs additions be approved with conditions.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

On November 26, 2001, Staff conducted a site inspection to analyze the potential view impacts that the proposed additions could have on the surrounding properties. As discussed earlier in the report. Staff found that ocean views from 4343 Dauntless will be significantly impaired by the second story addition. However, Staff was not able to discuss the impacts with the property owners because the property owners were not home at the time of the site visit. On December 3, 2001, Staff received a comment letter from the property owners of 4343 Dauntless Drive, Mr. and Mrs. ---,stating that they do not object to the proposed additions at 4362 Exultant Drive, although the proposed additions impact their ocean view. They stated that they do not object to the proposed additions and to the view impacts because they are planning on submitting their own Height Variation application for another property they own in the Seaview Tract, -----, which they believe would impact the ocean view from 4362 Exultant Drive (subject property).

Although the property owners at 4343 Dauntless Drive do not object to the proposed additions, Staff is still not able to recommend approval for the second story addition because the Development Code only allows a Height Variation Permit to be granted if all the findings, as stated in Section 17.02.040(C)(1)(e), can be made. As discussed, Staff believes that the second story addition significantly impairs a view and Finding No. 4 and Finding No. 5 cannot be made.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the above analysis, Staff determined that three of the nine findings for granting a Height Variation cannot be made to allow the second story addition. Specifically, Staff feels that the proposed second story addition will significantly impair view from 4343 Dauntless Drive, will cumulatively impair views, and the proposed scale and design of the residence is not compatible with the surrounding neighborhood. Staff informed the applicant of Staff’s concerns and proposed recommendation of denial, and the applicant elected to proceed with the proposed additions. Therefore, Staff recommends adoption of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, denying without prejudice Height Variation Permit No. 938 and approving, with conditions, Site Plan Review No. 9202.

ALTERNATIVES

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

  1. Approve Height Variation Permit No. 936 and Site Plan Review No. 9202, with condition, and direct Staff to prepare an appropriate P.C. Resolution and conditions of approval for Planning Commission consideration at the next meeting.
  2. Identify any issues of concern with the proposed project, provide Staff and/or the applicant with direction in modifying the project, and continue the public hearing to a date certain.
  3. Deny with prejudice.

ATTACHMENTS

  • Draft P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__
  • Conditions of Approval
  • Letter from Mr. and Mrs. ----,------
  • Floor plan and Site Plan


P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DENYING WITHOUT PREJUDICE HEIGHT VARIATION NO. 938 FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF A 1,071 SQUARE FOOT FIRST STORY ADDITION AND THE CONSTRUCTION OF A NEW 1,251 SQUARE FOOT ADDITION, AT A HEIGHT OF 22.41’, AS MEASURED FROM THE FINISH GRADE ADJACENT TO THE LOWEST FOUNDATION TO THE RIDGE; AND APPROVING WITH CONDITIONS, SITE PLAN REVIEW NO. 9202 FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF A SINGLE STORY DINING ROOM, KITCHEN, NOOK, AND STAIRS ADDITION, AT 4362 EXULTANT DRIVE.

WHEREAS, on May 15, 2001, the Planning Commission approved Landslide Moratorium Exception Permit No. 40 to allow the applicant to submit the necessary Planning Department applications to request approval of a 597 square foot garage, 474 square foot first story addition, and a 1,251 square foot second story addition; and,

WHEREAS, on July 26, 2001 an application for Height Variation No. 938 and Site Plan Review No. 9201 was submitted to the Planning Department to allow the construction of a 1,071 square foot first story addition, including a 474 square foot garage, and the construction of a new 1,251 square foot second story addition; and,

WHEREAS, on November 1, 2001 the subject applications were deemed complete for processing by Staff; and,

WHEREAS, on November 3, 2001 the required public notices for the December 11, 2001 Planning Commission meeting were mailed to property owners within a 500 foot radius of the subject property, and a notice was published in the Peninsula News on November 5, 2001; and,

WHEREAS, pursuant to the provision of the California Quality Act, Public Resources Code Section 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 Height Variation No. 938 would have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore the proposed project has been found to be categorically exempt (Class 1, Section 15303(a)); and,

WHEREAS, after notices issued pursuant to the requirements of Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on December 11, 2001, at which all interested parties were given the 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 finds that the applicant successfully completed the Early Neighborhood Consultation process by obtaining 33 of the 56 properties within the 500’ radius, which is 33%, and 10 of the 12 properties within the 100’ radius, which is 83%.

Section 2: The subject lot is not located in an area designated by the City’s General Plan and the City’s Coastal Specific Plan as a viewing area and therefore the proposed structure does not impair any public views.

Section 3: The subject lot is located on a manufactured slope that was created at the time the building pads for the subject tract were graded and is not located on a ridge or promontory, as defined by the City’s development Code.

Section 4: Based on a site inspection, exclusive of foliage the proposed addition will significantly block the ocean view from 4343 Dauntless Drive. Dauntless Drive is located diagonally from the subject property and on a pad elevation higher than the subject property with the ocean view oriented toward the subject property. Specifically, 4343 Dauntless Drive has an ocean view over the existing garage at 4362 Exultant Drive. The proposed second story addition will be located above the existing garage therefore significantly blocking the ocean view from 4343 Dauntless drive.

Section 5: The proposed project will create cumulative view impairment because the properties located on Dauntless Drive are located on higher elevations than the properties on Exultant Drive with views oriented toward and above the houses located on Exultant Drive. Therefore if the properties located on Exultant Drive propose similar additions, they could cumulatively block the views of the properties located on Dauntless Drive.

Section 6: The proposed addition is designed in such a manner which will significantly impair the view of the residence at 4343 Dauntless drive because 4343 Dauntless Drive has an existing view over the existing garage and in the area in front of the garage, and the proposed first story addition is proposed to be located in front of the garage and the second story addition is proposed to be located above the first story addition and above the existing garage.

Section 7: The proposed structure complies with the residential development standards for a RS-4 zoning district in terms of open space, height requirements, and setbacks. Furthermore, in addition to obtaining Planning approval, building and grading permits must also be obtained for compliance with the Uniform Building Code, the Development Code and the City’s Municipal Code.

Section 8: The proposed structure at 5,066 square foot will be almost twice as large as the surrounding residences found in the neighborhood, therefore not compatible with the scale of the neighborhood. Furthermore, the proposed second story addition will be located entirely above the proposed garage and first story addition providing no articulation between the first and second story, therefore increasing the apparent bulk and mass of the structure, which is not compatible with the surrounding single story homes.

Section 9: The proposed second story addition will not result in an unreasonable infringement of privacy because the residence adjacent to the south contains a courtyard in the side yard adjacent to the addition, which does not appear to be used as a gathering area, therefore, the windows located on the south elevation of the second story addition will not create an infringement of privacy on the property to the south. Additionally, there is currently a raised deck located in the rear yard of the subject property, located at the top of the transitional slope between the subject property and the property adjacent to the rear, and the adjacent property to the rear is currently visible from the existing deck, therefore, the proposed second story balcony will not increase the infringement of privacy to the property adjacent to the rear.

Section 10: The proposed single story additions to the dining room located to the rear of the existing residence, the kitchen and nook addition located in the front of the existing residence and the stairs addition located to the side of the existing residence will comply with all the Code requirements in terms of lot coverage, setback, and height.

Section 11: A Notice of Decision shall be given to the applicant and to all interested parties informing them of the Planning Commission’s decision.

Section 12: Any interested party may appeal this decision or any portion of this decision to the City Council. Pursuant to Section 17.02.040.C.1.j 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 the date of the Planning Commission’s adoption of this resolution.

Section 13: 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 denies without prejudice Height Variation No. 938, thereby denying the construction of a 1,071 square foot first story addition, and the construction of a new 1,251 square foot second story addition, and approves with conditions, Site Plan Review No. 9202, thereby approving the construction of the dining room, kitchen, nook and stair addition, totaling approximately 150 square feet.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 11th day of Decemberr, 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

Site Plan Review No. 9202

  1. The applicant/property owner shall submit to the City a statement, in writing that they have read, understand and agree to all conditions of approval listed below. Failure to provide said written statement within ninety (90) days of the effective date of approval shall render this approval null and void.
  2. The approval shall become null and void after 180 days from the date of approval unless the approved plans are submitted to the Building and Safety Division to initiate the "plan check" review process, pursuant to Section 17.86.070 of the City’s Development Code. This approval shall become null and void if, after initiating the "plan check" review process, or receiving a building permit to begin construction, said "plan check" or permit is allowed to expire or is withdrawn by the applicant.
  3. The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement is authorized to make minor modifications to the approved preliminary plans or any of the conditions if such modifications shall achieve substantially the same results as would strict compliance with said plans and conditions.
  4. Approval of Site Plan Review No. 9202 is for the construction of approximately 150 square feet of first story additions. Specifically, approval of Site Plan Review No. 9202 is for the construction of a dining room expansion located in the rear of the existing residence, a kitchen and nook expansion located in the front of the existing residence, and the stairs addition located in the south side of the existing residence.
  5. The proposed structure shall maintain the following minimum setbacks:
  6. 15'-0" rear yard
    5'-0" interior side yard
    10’-0" street side yard
    20'-0" front yard (proposed at 20’-10")

  7. The maximum height of the proposed structure shall not exceed the existing maximum ridgeline and sixteen (16) feet as measured from the highest elevation of existing pad covered by structure to the ridgeline and twenty feet as measured from the point where the lowest foundation meets finish grade. The dining room, kitchen and stair additions are proposed at a height of 15.04’, as measured from highest point (97.04’) to the top of the ridgeline (112.19’), and the nook addition is proposed at a height of 12.52’, as measured from the highest point (97.04’) to the top of the nook ridgeline (109.67’).
  8. All structures located within the required twenty (20) foot front yard setback area shall not exceed a height of forty-two (42) inches in height.
  9. The required twenty (20) foot front yard setback area shall be at least fifty (50) percent landscaped.
  10. No improvements shall be permitted on "extreme slopes" (35% or greater).
  11. No fence, wall, hedge, structure, shrubbery, mound of earth or other visual obstruction over thirty inches (30") in height, as measured from the adjacent street curb elevation shall be erected, placed, planted or allowed to grow within the "intersection visibility triangle". Intersection visibility triangle shall be the area formed by the intersection of extended curblines and a line joining points on the curb sixty (60) feet from the point of intersection of the curbline extensions.
  12. Based on a site visit, Staff found that there is no foliage on the subject property that exceeds sixteen (16) feet in height and significantly impairs views from neighboring properties. Therefore, Staff finds that no foliage shall be removed under this application request.
  13. The project shall substantially conform to the plans stamped approved with the effective date of this approval.
  14. Permitted hours of construction are 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday. No work is permitted on Sundays or legal holidays.
  15. The construction site shall be kept free of all loose materials resembling trash and debris in excess of that material used for immediate construction purposes. Such excess material may include, but is not limited to: the accumulation of debris, garbage, lumber, scrap metal, concrete, asphalt, piles of earth, salvage materials, abandoned or discarded furniture, appliances or other household fixtures.
  16. In the event that a Planning requirement and a Building & Safety requirement are in conflict with one another, the stricter standard shall apply.
  17. No grading is approved or allowed under this permit approval.
  18. All applicable soils/geotechnical reports required by the Building and Safety Division shall be obtained by the applicant and approved by the City's geologist prior to building permit issuance.
  19. All applicable permits required by the Building and Safety Division shall be obtained by the applicant.



5. VARIANCE (CASE NO. ZON2001-00088): Mr. & Mrs. Chris Tsai, (applicant), 10 La Vista Verde. (BY)



TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: DECEMBER 11, 2001

SUBJECT: VARIANCE PERMIT (CASE NO. ZON2001-00088)

ADDRESS: 10 LA VISTA VERDE

APPLICANT:
MR. GARY LU
FORMOSA LANDSCAPING & CONSTRUCTION
4950 CAMELLIA AVE
TEMPLE CITY

PHONE: 626-374-8160

LANDOWNER:
MR. CHRIS TSAI
10 LA VISTA VERDE
RANCHO PALOS VERDES, CA 90275

PHONE: 310-241-0055

STAFF: BEILIN YU

COORDINATOR: ASSISTANT PLANNER

REQUESTED ACTION: A REQUEST TO LEGALIZE AN EXISTING 6’-0" HIGH BLOCK WALL WITH TEN (10) PILASTERS WITHIN THE FRONT YARD SETBACK AREA.

RECOMMENDATION: ADOPT P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-___; DENYING VARIANCE (CASE NO. ZON2001-00088).

REFERENCES:

ZONING: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL – RS-2

LAND USE: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL

CODE SECTIONS: 17.64 AND 17.76.030

GENERAL PLAN: SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL

TRAILS PLAN: N/A

SPECIFIC PLAN: N/A

CEQA: CATEGORICALLY EXEMPT (CLASS 1)

ACTION DEADLINE: DECEMBER 23, 2001

BACKGROUND

On September 26, 2001, Variance Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00088) was submitted to the Planning, Building and Code Enforcement Department for processing to legalize an existing 6’-0" high solid wall with pilasters located within the front yard setback. The existing wall came to the City’s attention because of a code enforcement case.

The application was deemed complete on October 25, 2001. The required public hearing notice was sent to 52 property owners within the 500 foot radius on November 8, 2001 and published in the Peninsula News on November 10, 2001. The City received 3 written comments and one phone call pertaining to the subject application.

SITE DESCRIPTION

The subject property is located on La Vista Verde Drive, which is located in the eastern portion of the City and is accessed off Palos Verdes Drive East. La Vista Verde Drive is a private street, with a 50’ wide road easement for access purposes. The subject lot is an interior lot with a front property line (located at the center of the private road) measuring approximately 150’, one side property line measuring 127.56’, the other side property line measuring 189.27’, and the rear property line measuring 132.13’, for a total lot area of 24,720 square feet. The portion of the private street easement located on the subject property is 25’ wide. Pursuant to Section 17.48.030(A)(1) of the Municipal Code, for lots abutting a private street, setbacks shall be measured from the street easement line. Therefore the required 20’ front yard setback is measured from the edge of the easement, which is 25’ from the front property line.

The subject property is currently improved with a single-family residence. In addition to the single-family residence, City records indicate approved permits for a spa and a 285 square foot playhouse.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The applicant is requesting an after-the-fact approval of an existing 6’-0" high solid wall located along the interior edge of the street easement, parallel to La Vista Verde Drive, located within the front yard setback. The wall measures 58" from the street side of the wall and 72" from the interior side of the wall because the property slopes down from the street. The wall includes 10 decorative pilasters. The two pilasters located adjacent to the driveway are 24" wide by 24" deep by 82" high (as measured from the interior side of the wall), with a 24" lamp above the pilasters. The other 8 pilasters are 16" wide by 16" deep by 74" high, as measured from the interior side of the wall and do not contain lamps.

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 developed with a single-family residence and the proposed project consists of a minor alteration to the existing structure on the subject property, with no significant additional site disturbance.

CODE CONSIDERATION AND ANALYSIS

Pursuant to the Development Code, the granting of a Variance provides a property owner with relief 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 17.76.030(C)(1)(a), the applicant is requesting a Variance to allow a solid wall, within the front yard setback, higher than the code permitted 42" high.

Pursuant to Section 17.64.050 of the Development Code, the Planning Commission must adopt the following four findings before granting approval of a Variance Permit.

  1. That 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. The applicant is of the opinion that the property has an exceptional circumstance in that the existing residence is located at a lower elevation than the street of access, and therefore, a higher block wall than the Code permits is necessary to provide the existing residence privacy from the through traffic on the street.

    Staff is of the opinion that there are no exceptional circumstances related to the size, shape and topography of the property which are not generally found on other lots in the same zoning district, since the subject property is a typical graded pad lot found throughout the zoning district, and all the surrounding residences located on the same side of the street are located at the same elevation as the subject property. Additionally, there are no special circumstances which unreasonably restrict the applicant’s ability to develop the property in conformance with City Development regulations, in that the applicant may build walls up to 42" in height, as allowed by the Development Code. As such, Staff is of the opinion that this finding cannot be adopted.

  3. That such a 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.
  4. The applicant believes that the granting of the Variance is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial property right enjoyed by other property owners under similar conditions because there are other walls higher than the permitted 42" height, which provides other property owners with privacy.

    Staff conducted a site inspection in the neighborhood and found other walls higher than the permitted 42" located within the surrounding properties’ front yard setback. However the majority of the properties in the neighborhood do not have walls or have walls that comply with the Development Code. Staff researched City files and found that the stone pilasters located in the front yard setback area of 22 La Vista Verde Drive were determined to be legal non-conforming in 1987. Staff also found that 27 La Vista Verde applied for a Variance in 1988 to allow a solid wall in the front yard setback higher than the permitted 42", and was denied by the Planning Commission because of the same reasons stated in this report. Additionally, Staff found that Variances have not been granted to allow walls located in the front yard areas to be higher than the 42". Therefore, such walls are either non permitted or legal non-conforming.

    Therefore, Staff is of the opinion that the Variance is not 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 because the majority of the properties in the neighborhood have walls and fences which comply with the Development Code. As such Staff is of the opinion that this finding cannot be adopted.

  5. 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.
  6. The applicant is of the opinion that since there are other walls that are higher than 42" in the neighborhood, the granting of the Variance to allow the block wall to be higher than 42" will not be materially detrimental to the public welfare.

    Staff is of the opinion that the approval of the Variance will be materially detrimental to the surrounding properties, because a solid wall adjacent to the street will have a negative visual impact on the neighborhood and negatively contrasts with the open front yards found predominantly in this neighborhood. In addition, allowing such walls would detract from the semi-rural and open character of this residential neighborhood. As such, Staff is of the opinion that this finding cannot be adopted.

  7. 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.

Staff is of the opinion that granting the Variance is contrary to the policies of the General Plan because the Development Code does not allow solid walls in the front and along street side setbacks. More Specifically, it is a policy of the General Plan to "make an effort through zoning…. to preserve the rural and open character of the City." (General Plan, page 78, policy 17). Additionally, granting the Variance is contrary to the policies of the General Plan because it is the goal of he City of Rancho Palos Verdes to enhance the visual character and physical quality of existing neighborhoods (General Plan, page 56), and as discussed above, allowing such walls would detract from the semi-rural and open character of this residential neighborhood.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

As noted above, on November 8, 2001 the City mailed out 52 notices (including the applicant). During the noticing period, the Planning Department received three correspondences pertaining to the proposed project.

The letters from Mrs. Gilda Marshall from 15 La Vista Verde Drive, Mr. Harold Herman from 8 La Vista Verde Drive, and Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Sorkin from 27 La Vista Verde Drive are attached as Exhibit "B". The correspondence indicates concerns in regards to the aesthetic impact that a solid wall along the street of access would have on the neighborhood, specifically related to the open character of the neighborhood. Mr. and Mrs. Zorkin also indicated that they have requested a Variance for solid walls in the front yard area and were denied in the past.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the above analysis, Staff determined that the four findings for granting a Variance cannot be made to allow the existing solid wall with ten (10) pilasters to remain. Staff has concerns regarding the aesthetics impacts a solid wall will have in the neighborhood, therefore Staff is not able to positively recommend approval on the subject application. Therefore, Staff recommends adoption of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-__, denying Variance Permit (Case No. 2001-00088).

ALTERNATIVES

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

  1. Approve Variance Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00088) with conditions, and direct Staff to prepare an appropriate P.C. Resolution and conditions of approval for Planning Commission consideration at the next meeting.
  2. 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-__
  • Floor plan and Site Plan
  • Letter from Mrs. Gilda Marshall from 15 La Vista Verde Drive
  • Letter from Mr. Harold Herman from 8 La Vista Verde Drive
  • Letter from Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Sorkin from 27 La Vista Verde Drive



P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DENYING VARIANCE (CASE NO. ZON2001-00088) A REQUEST TO ALLOW AN EXISTING 6’-0" HIGH SOLID BLOCK WALL WITH TEN (10) PILASTERS TO REMAIN WITHIN THE FRONT YARD SETBACK AT 10 LA VISTA VERDE DRIVE.

WHEREAS, on September 26, 2001 an application for Variance (Case No. ZON2001-00088) was submitted to the Planning Department to legalize an existing 6’-0" high solid block wall with ten (10) pilasters located within the front yard setback; and,

WHEREAS, on October 25, 2001 the subject application was deemed complete for processing by Staff; and,

WHEREAS, on November 8, 2001 a public notice was mailed to property owners within a 500 foot radius of the subject property informing them of the proposed project. Furthermore, a notice was published in the Palos Verdes Peninsula News on November 10, 2001; and,

WHEREAS, pursuant to the provision of the California Quality Act, Public Resources Code Section 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 Variance (Case No. ZON2001-00088) would have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore the proposed project has been found to be categorically exempt (Class 1, Section 15303(a)); and,

WHEREAS, after notices issued pursuant to the requirements of Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on December 11, 2001, at which all interested parties were given the 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: That there are no special circumstances or conditions applicable to the property involved, or to the intended use of the property which do not apply generally to other properties in the same zoning district, since the subject property is a typical graded pad lot found throughout the zoning district and the owner could construct a wall no higher than 42" similar to other neighboring properties.

Section 2: That the Variance is not necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a substantial right of the applicant, which right is possessed by other property owners under like conditions in the same zoning district, because the majority of the properties in the neighborhood have walls and fences that comply with maximum permitted height by the Development Code and because other Variances for 6’-0" high block walls have been denied in the past.

Section 3: That approval of the Variance will cause materially detrimental effects on surrounding properties, in that a solid wall adjacent to the street of access will have a negative visual impact on the neighborhood and negatively contrasts with the open front yards found predominantly in this neighborhood. In addition, the impact of allowing such walls would detract from the semi rural and open character of this residential neighborhood.

Section 4: That the Variance request is contrary to the policy of the General Plan because it is a policy of the General Plan to "make an effort through zoning to preserve the rural and open character of the City" (General Plan Page 78 Policy 17), and the Development Code does not allow solid walls higher than 42 inches in height in the front and along street side setbacks.

Section 5: Any interested party may appeal this decision or any portion of this decision to the City Council. Pursuant to Section 17.02.040.C.1.j 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 the date of the Planning Commission’s adoption of this resolution.

Section 6: 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 denies Variance (Case No.ZON2001-00088), thereby denying the after the fact approval of an existing 6’-0" to 7’-0" high solid block wall along the front property line at 10 La Vista Verde Drive.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 11th day of December, 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



6. HEIGHT VARIATION PERMIT NO. 930, GRADING PERMIT NO. 2279 and MINOR EXCEPTION PERMIT NO. 596: Ron & Blanca Letvin, (applicant), 6528 Nancy Road. (AM)

MEMORANDUM

TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: DECEMBER 11, 2001

SUBJECT: HEIGHT VARIATION NO. 930, GRADING PERMIT NO. 2279 AND MINOR EXCEPTION PERMIT NO. 596 / 6528 NANCY ROAD (THOMAS GUIDE PAGE: 823 / F-2)

Staff Coordinator: Ara Michael Mihranian, AICP, Senior Planner

RECOMMENDATION:

Staff recommends that the Planning Commission continue the public hearing to the January 22, 2002 meeting, and direct Staff to re-notice the proposed project in accordance to the provisions set forth in the Development Code.

DISCUSSION

On November 5, 2001, the subject applications were deemed complete for processing and the required public notice of the public hearing, was mailed to property owners within a 500’ radius of the subject property, all interested parties, and published in the Peninsula News informing the general public of the proposed project and inviting any comments for consideration. In response, the City received eleven (11) letters from neighboring property owners expressing concern with the proposed project as it pertains to the accuracy of the silhouette, potential view impacts and the proposed residence’s incompatibility with the surrounding neighborhood. In response to the comments, Staff re-measured the silhouette and determined that the footprint of the silhouette was plotted incorrectly by approximately five (5) feet, which directly impacts the depicted height. As a result, Staff informed the property owners that Staff’s recommendation to the Commission would be to continue the public hearing to allow the silhouette to be corrected so that Staff, the Commissioners and the public could accurately evaluate the proposed project. The property owners indicated that the silhouette will be corrected and agreed to the continuance of the public hearing. Staff also advised the property owners to conduct a meeting with the surrounding neighbors to hear the concerns expressed during the public noticing period.

In order to allow the public to comment on the proposed project based on the revised silhouette, Staff recommends that the public hearing be continued to the January 22, 2002 meeting. Furthermore, Staff recommends that the proposed project be re-noticed, thereby informing the general public of the new public hearing date and inviting new comments based on the revised silhouette. It should also be noted that Staff has notified all interested parties of Staff’s recommended continuance.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Pursuant to the Permit Streamlining Act, a decision on the proposed project must be made by January 4, 2002, which is sixty days from the date of completeness. Since Staff recommends continuing the public hearing to the January 22, 2002 meeting, which is beyond the action deadline date, a one time, ninety day, time extension has been submitted by the applicant (see attachment) to allow adequate time to evaluate the proposed project.

CONCLUSION

Based on the above discussion, Staff recommends that the public hearing for this item be continued to the January 22, 2002 meeting, and that a new public notice be provided in accordance to the public noticing provisions set forth in the Development Code.

ATTACHMENTS:

  • Applicant’s Time Extension Letter




7. APPEAL OF USE DETERMINATION (CASE NO. ZON2001-00120): Alan Boeker, Standard Pacific (applicant/appellant), 5601 Crestridge Road. (KF)

TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: DECEMBER 11, 2001

SUBJECT: APPEAL OF USE DETERMINATION (CASE NO. ZON2001-00120): USE DETERMINATION REGARDING SENIOR CONDOMINIUMS IN THE INSTITUTIONAL (I) ZONING DISTRICT (APPELLANT: ALAN BOEKER/STANDARD PACIFIC, 5601 CRESTRIDGE ROAD)

Staff Coordinator: Kit Fox, aicp, Senior Planner

RECOMMENDATION

Deny the appeal and uphold the Director’s determination that senior condominiums are inconsistent with the intent and purpose of the Institutional (I) zoning district.

BACKGROUND

On October 12, 2001, Alan Boeker of Standard Pacific submitted a request for a use determination for a vacant site on Crestridge Road, pursuant to Section 17.26.030(N) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code (RPVDC). The request was for a determination that senior condominiums are similar to and no more intensive than other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district. Standard Pacific is considering purchasing the property from its current owner, Crestridge Estates llc, and pursuing an application for a 104-unit senior condominium project on the site. Standard Pacific has also expressed interest in a larger, 120-unit residential project that would encompass the subject property as well as a portion of the adjacent, 19.64-acre City-owned property that is currently proposed for a senior affordable housing project (Indian Ridgecrest Gardens).

On October 26, 2001, the Director issued a determination that senior condominiums are not consistent with the Institutional (I) zoning district. The Director’s determination is detailed in the attached memorandum. On November 12, 2001, Mr. Boeker filed an appeal of the Director’s determination, accompanied by the appropriate appeal fee.

DISCUSSION

Pursuant to Section 17.26.030(E) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code (RPVDC), "[sanitariums], nursing homes, rest homes, homes for the aged, homes for children and homes for mental patients" are conditionally permitted in the Institutional (I) zoning district. Senior condominiums are not explicitly listed as a permitted or a conditionally permitted use in this zoning district. However, pursuant to RPVDC Section 17.26.030(N), other uses that "the Director deems to be similar and no more intensive" than other conditionally-permitted uses may be permitted with the approval of a conditional use permit.

There are two existing and two proposed institutional uses in the City that provide housing and related services for senior citizens: The Canterbury (5801 Crestridge Road), Palos Verdes Villa (29661 Western Avenue), the proposed Belmont Village (5701 Crestridge Road) and the proposed Indian Ridgecrest Gardens (5555 Crestridge Road). None of these projects include or propose individual ownership of dwelling units by the residents. However, a common feature of the first three of these projects is that they each provide essential life assistance for many—if not all—of their residents, including daily housekeeping and health care, daily meal service (since many rooms and units in these facilities lack private kitchens) and other specialized services and programs (such as Alzheimer’s disease care). If approved as currently proposed, the Indian Ridgecrest Gardens senior apartment project would provide a more independent lifestyle for residents, and the affordability component of the project would ensure that the basic housing needs of lower-income senior citizens are met. In addition, transportation, meal service, housekeeping and other care-giving services would also be offered to residents of the Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project on an "as needed" basis.

The project proposed by Standard Pacific would involve age-restricted, for-sale condominiums and a commonly-owned community center. Standard Pacific proposes to offer additional "special" services to residents on an "as needed" basis, including transportation, housekeeping and social and recreational activities. A homeowners’ association would also be responsible for common area maintenance and other "standard" benefits of condominium ownership, but each dwelling unit would be owned in fee by the resident of the unit. All of the community’s residents would automatically enjoy the "standard" services of the project, but they could choose to avail themselves of all, some or none of the additional "special" services offered by the developer. As such, Staff believes that these "special" services are provided to the residents more as conveniences than as essential life services. The Director believes that this is an important difference between Standard Pacific’s proposal and the other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district, which makes it dissimilar from The Canterbury, Palos Verdes Villa, Belmont Village or Indian Ridgecrest Gardens.

With respect to the issue of intensity of use, Staff believes that Standard Pacific’s proposal might be less intense than a residential condominium project in terms of its density, but more intense in terms of traffic and other impacts to the surrounding area than some other type of institutional use that could be permitted on the site. Staff also believes that Standard Pacific’s proposal more closely resembles a residential condominium project—with some additional but optional convenience services—than it does a true congregate care facility. However, even if Standard Pacific’s proposal is less intense than other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district, the Director’s determination must be based upon a finding that the proposed use is both similar to and no more intense than these other uses. As discussed above, the Director found that the use proposed by Standard Pacific is not similar to these other uses.

In addition to the required "findings" specified in RPVDC Section 17.26.030(N), the Director also considered the opinion of the City Attorney regarding the consistency of senior condominiums with the Institutional (I) zoning district, as expressed in a letter to the developer of the Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project on June 7, 2001 (see attachments to the October 26, 2001 memorandum form the Director). The original 1999 proposal for Indian Ridgecrest Gardens was for eighty-four (84) age-restricted, affordable apartments, which, at the time, seemed consistent with the Institutional (I) zoning district standards. By early in 2001, the total number of apartments had decreased to fifty-two (52), of which only thirteen (13) would be reserved as affordable, but this was still felt to be consistent with the Institutional (I) zoning district because it would still be an apartment complex with a single owner retaining control over all of the units. Most recently, however, the project proponent requested permission to change the project to forty-two (42) age-restricted, for-sale units. The City Attorney believes that the proposed change in the Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project to multiple ownership would create significant difficulties for the City in ensuring the long-term affordability of the units, enforcing the age restrictions on occupants of the project, and guaranteeing the continued provision of special services for the residents of the project. The City Attorney believes that these difficulties would not occur with a seniors-only apartment project since the owner and operator of the apartment would bear the responsibility for these conditions. At the August 21, 2001 meeting of the City’s Redevelopment Agency, the Agency elected not to enter into a new exclusive negotiating agreement (ENA) with the developer of Indian Ridgecrest Gardens. Although the Agency did not make a definitive determination regarding the appropriateness of condominiums on the site, it did direct Staff to review other potential uses of the site in addition to a senior affordable housing project.

Standard Pacific has responded to the Director’s determination with additional information submitted on November 20, 2001. Standard Pacific asserts that the Director’s determination that the proposed project is not similar to other conditionally-permitted uses is weakened by comparisons to the proposed Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project. Staff included this project in the analysis of the consistency of Standard Pacific’s proposal for comparison purposes, but it is entirely possible that Indian Ridgecrest Gardens may not be approved. By comparison, both The Canterbury and Palos Verdes Villa have been in operation for many years, and the proposed Belmont Village project is substantially similar to the Marriott Brighton Gardens project that was approved for the same site in 1999. Therefore, Staff believes that the Director’s determination that Standard Pacific’s proposal is not consistent with the other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district is based upon a valid distinction drawn between Standard Pacific’s proposal and other existing and proposed projects in the Institutional (I) zoning district.

Standard Pacific also takes exception to the Director’s assessment of the intensity of the proposed project, as compared to other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district. Specifically, Standard Pacific objects to the comparison of the traffic impacts of their proposal with those of a residential condominium with the same number of units. However, based upon the table below, even if Standard Pacific’s project is categorized as "Elderly Housing-Attached"(ITE Code 253), the likely, daily trip generation for the same number of units is higher than that expected for a "Congregate Care Facility" (ITE Code 252), although the peak-hour trips would probably be lower.

Type of Use (ITE code)

Average Daily
Weekday Trips

PM Weekday
Peak-Hour Trips

Congregate Care (252)

224

18

Elderly Housing-Attached (253)

362

11


As such, it might be arguable that Standard Pacific’s proposal is no more intensive than other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district. However, as noted above, the Director must find the proposal is both similar to and no more intensive than other conditionally-permitted uses.

Standard Pacific has provided conceptual building and site plans to support its argument that the proposed project would enhance the site and be of benefit to the community. Staff does not refute Standard Pacific’s position that this might be an attractive, well-designed residential project that could fulfill a need in the community. Staff does not agree, however, with Standard Pacific’s position that this proposal is an institutional use that would be consistent with the current zoning of the property in question. As such, Staff believes that the Director correctly found that Standard Pacific’s proposal is not consistent with the intent and purpose of the Institutional (I) zoning district.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

On November 21, 2001, public notices were mailed to the appellant, the property owner, fifty-nine other property owners within a 500-foot radius of the project site, and representatives of the Mesa Palos Verdes and Ridgecrest communities. On November 29, 2001, public notice of the December 11, 2001 public hearing for this appeal was published in the Palos Verdes Peninsula News. As of the date this report was completed, Staff had received additional information from the appellant on November 20, 2001, but no other letters regarding this appeal had been received.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the foregoing discussion, Staff recommends that the Planning Commission deny the appeal and uphold the Director’s determination in this matter, via Minute Order.

ALTERNATIVES

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

1. Uphold the appeal and overturn the Director’s determination in this matter.

2. Identify any issues of concern with the Director’s determination, provide Staff with further direction, and continue the public hearing to a date certain.

Attachments:

  • Director’s memorandum of October 26, 2001 (with attachments)
  • Appeal letter and additional information from Standard Pacific


TO: ADDRESS FILE (5601 CRESTRIDGE ROAD)

FROM: JOEL ROJAS, aicp, DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: OCTOBER 26, 2001

SUBJECT: PLANNING CASE NO. ZON2001-00120: USE DETERMINATION REGARDING SENIOR CONDOMINIUMS IN THE INSTITUTIONAL (I) ZONING DISTRICT [APPLICANT: STANDARD PACIFIC]

Staff Coordinator:Kit Fox, aicp, Senior Planner

BACKGROUND

On October 12, 2001, Steve Kaplan submitted a request for a use determination on behalf of Alan Boeker and Standard Pacific for a vacant site on Crestridge Road, pursuant to Section 17.26.030(N) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code (RPVDC). The request was for a determination that senior condominiums are similar to and no more intensive than other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district.

SITE AND PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The subject property is a 9.76-acre site in the 5600-block of Crestridge Road. The parcel was "carved out" of a larger 29.40-acre site with the City’s approval of Parcel Map No. 25271 in June 1999. Most recently, the property was the subject of an application for a 100-unit senior condominium project (Crestridge Villas), which was originally submitted to the City in May 2000. The City administratively withdrew this application on August 22, 2001, due to the failure of the then-applicant to submit the necessary information to complete the application in a timely fashion. The property is surrounded by institutional and residential uses, as well as open space hazard areas. The land use and zoning designations for the developable portions of the site are Institutional and Institutional (I), respectively.

Standard Pacific is considering purchasing the property from its current owner, Crestridge Estates llc, and pursuing an application for a senior condominium project that is similar to the recently-withdrawn Crestridge Villas project. Standard Pacific currently envisions a 104-unit residential project on the site that would include a community center for residents. As an alternative, Standard Pacific has also expressed interest in a larger, 120-unit residential project that would encompass the subject property as well as a portion of the adjacent, 19.64-acre City-owned property that is currently proposed for a senior affordable housing project.

DISCUSSION

Pursuant to RPVDC Section 17.26.030(E), the following uses are permitted in the Institutional (I) zoning district with the approval of a conditional use permit:

Sanitariums, nursing homes, rest homes, homes for the aged, homes for children and homes for mental patients.

Senior condominiums are not explicitly listed as a permitted or a conditionally permitted use in this zoning district. However, pursuant to RPVDC 17.26.030(N), other uses that "the Director deems to be similar and no more intensive" than other conditionally-permitted uses may be permitted with the approval of a conditional use permit. Standard Pacific has requested such a determination for its proposed senior condominium project.

The City’s institutional zoning districts provide for a "wide range of major public and quasi-public, institutional and auxiliary uses, established in response to the health, safety, educational, cultural and welfare needs of the City, in efficient, functionally-compatible and attractively-planned administrative centers, medical centers, cultural centers, educational institutions and similar uses" (RPVDC Section 17.26.010). These districts are scattered throughout the City, and encompass such diverse uses as public and private schools, churches and other places of worship, civic and public safety facilities, and homes for the elderly. The ‘I’ district along Crestridge Road between Crenshaw Boulevard and Highridge Road is one of the largest institutional zoning districts in the City that is suitable for future development. This fact is reflected in the City’s General Plan, which discusses the Crestridge Road area as a "major new area designated for institutional use" that is "centrally located [on] the Peninsula" and is intended "to provide for a complex of future [institutional] uses, rather than allowing them to scatter throughout the community, where they are sometimes incompatible with other uses."

There are two existing and two proposed institutional uses that provide housing and related services for senior citizens, as summarized in the table below:

Use

Address

Description

The Canterbury

5801 Crestridge Rd.

The Canterbury is an existing nursing home that is owned and operated by the Episcopal Church. It provides 127 independent-living, assisted-living and skilled nursing units, as well as transportation services for residents.

Palos Verdes Villa

29661 Western Ave.

Palos Verdes Villa is an existing nursing home that is privately owned and operated. It provides 71 private and semi-private rooms without kitchens. Maid and assisted living services are available and common dining facilities are provided.

Belmont Village

5701 Crestridge Rd.

Belmont Village is a proposed senior assisted living facility. Previously, Marriott Lifecare Services obtained entitlements for the Brighton Gardens project on this site. The Brighton Gardens project was approved for a total of 128 beds in a 97-unit assisted-living facility and a 25-unit Alzheimer’s care facility. Belmont Village proposes the same numbers of units and beds, and the same scope of services.

Indian Ridgecrest Gardens *

5555 Crestridge Rd.

Indian Ridgecrest Gardens is a proposed senior affordable apartment complex. If approved as currently proposed, it would provide 52 self-contained apartment units with kitchens, as well as community facilities and services such as transportation and recreation. Twelve of the proposed 52 apartments would be made affordable to senior citizens with very low, low and moderate incomes.


* The Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project is being considered by the City, along with other alternative land uses for the City-owned site at the corner of Crestridge Road and Crenshaw Boulevard. A report on the possible alternative uses of this site is expected to be presented to the City Council some time in early 2002.

A common feature of the first three projects listed above is that they each provide essential life assistance for many—if not all—of their residents. Such assistance includes care with daily housekeeping and health care, daily meal service (since many rooms and units in these facilities lack private kitchens) and other specialized services and programs (such as Alzheimer’s disease care). These types of essential life services are consistent with the types of conditionally-permitted senior housing facilities allowed in the ‘I’ district, which include sanitariums, nursing homes, rest homes and homes for the aged. If approved, the Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project would provide a more independent lifestyle for residents, but the affordability component of the project would ensure that the basic housing needs of lower-income senior citizens are met. As such, these existing and proposed facilities serve the institutional needs of the senior citizen population by fulfilling basic requirements for living: shelter, food and health care.

The project proposed by Standard Pacific would involve age-restricted, for-sale condominiums and a commonly-owned community center. Standard Pacific proposes to offer additional "special" services to residents on an "as needed" basis, including transportation, housekeeping and social and recreational activities. A homeowners’ association would also be responsible for common area maintenance (such as landscaping) and other "standard" benefits of condominium ownership. All of the community’s residents would automatically enjoy the "standard" services of the project, but could choose to avail themselves of all, some or none of the additional "special" services. As such, these "special" services—which Standard Pacific asserts to be the main reason why this proposal should be considered an institutional use rather than a residential use—are provided to the residents more as conveniences than as essential services. In this way, the Director believes that Standard Pacific’s proposal for senior condominiums is not similar to the other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district.

With respect to the issue of intensity of use, Standard Pacific’s proposal would be less dense than the above-mentioned institutional uses that provide housing and related services for senior citizens. This reduced density is more consistent with residential densities elsewhere in the City than with those expected for an institutional use. Another measure of the intensity of the proposed use is the likely traffic that it would generate. The table below demonstrates the difference in trip generation (based upon ITE trip generation formulae) that could result from the same 104-unit project as a congregate care facility and a residential condominium.

Type of Use (ITE code)

Average Daily
Weekday Trips

PM Weekday
Peak-Hour Trips

Congregate Care (252)

224

18

Residential Condominium/Townhouse (230)

609

56


As discussed above, Standard Pacific’s proposal more closely resembles a residential condominium project—with some additional but optional convenience services—than it does a true congregate care facility. Therefore, the Director believes that the project currently envisioned would probably be more intensive than other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

On June 7, 2001, the City Attorney responded to an inquiry from the developer of the Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project regarding a proposal to change the project from a senior apartment complex to a senior condominium complex. In her response, the City Attorney raised the issue of the level of services provided in a condominium project versus those provided in a project with single ownership (i.e., apartments). She also raised concerns about the ability of the City to ensure the future provision of these services when dealing with multiple property owners instead of a single owner or operator. Finally, the City Attorney was concerned about the enforcement of affordable housing restrictions upon the resale of individual condominium units, based upon poor experiences with this type of program in the past.

Standard Pacific has attempted to address these concerns by submitting sample CC&R language regarding resident age restrictions and affordable housing requirements. With respect to the sample age restrictions, up to twenty percent (20%) of the residents of the community could be younger than fifty-five (55) years of age. In households with a person fifty-five (55) years of age or older, only one such person would have to reside in the residence and only for six (6) months out of the year to meet permanent residency requirements. Additional residents forty-five (45) years of age—and younger, under certain circumstances—could also reside in a household on a permanent basis. On a temporary basis, anyone could live in the household for up to sixty (60) days per year. As such, a significant portion of the population of the proposed project might not be senior citizens. The City understands that the basis and authority for the sample age restrictions comes largely from State and Federal fair housing law. However, based upon these sample restrictions, the Director believes that the proposed project would not be consistent with being a "home for the aged," even though Standard Pacific has requested consideration of this proposal on this basis.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the foregoing discussion, the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement has determined that senior condominiums are not consistent with Institutional (I) zoning district because:

  • Senior condominiums are not similar to other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district; and,

  • Senior condominiums are more intensive than other conditionally-permitted uses in the Institutional (I) zoning district.

This determination is also supported in recent correspondence from the City Attorney regarding the proposal for condominiums rather than apartments for the Indian Ridgecrest Gardens project. Therefore, the Director has determined that senior condominiums are neither a permitted use nor a conditionally permitted use within the Institutional (I) zoning district. As such, the City could not accept an application for the project as currently proposed because it would be inconsistent with the underlying zoning of the property.

Attachments

  • Use determination request from Standard Pacific (dated October 12, 2001)
  • RPVDC Chapter 17.26 "Institutional (I) District"
  • Correspondence from the City Attorney (dated June 7, 2001)




8. VARIANCE AND COASTAL PERMIT (CASE NO. ZON2001-00107):
Eugene Summers (applicant), 4174 Maritime Drive. (RL)


MEMORANDUM

TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: DECEMBER 11, 2001

SUBJECT: VARIANCE AND COSTOAL PERMIT (CASE NO. 2001-00107) 4174 MARITIME

Staff Coordinator: Ryan Luckert, Assistant Planner

BACKGROUND

On October 22, 2001, the applicant, Mr. Eugene Summers, submitted an application for Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00107) to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement. On October 30, 2001 the application was deemed generally complete to begin processing. The applications request approval for the construction of a new 630 square-foot detached three (3) car garage and a six (6) foot high concrete wall within the front yard setback area of the lot. The proposed garage will replace an existing 404 square-foot attached two (2) car garage, which is currently not in the front yard setback area. The proposed garage will result in an eleven (11) foot reduction in the twenty (20) foot front yard setback area.

On November 21, 2001, the City mailed notices to property owners within a 500-foot radius from the subject property. The California Coastal Commission was noticed as well. Subsequently, a notice of public hearing was published in the Palos Verdes Peninsula News on Thursday, November 29, 2001. As of the drafting of the staff report, Staff has not received any concerns (either in writing or verbally) from the notified property owners regarding the proposed garage and wall.

ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT

In accordance with the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), Staff had determined this project to be categorically exempt under Class 1 – Existing Structures; therefore, no further environmental review is required.

Class 1 exempts from the preparation of environmental documents a project consisting of "accessory structures including garages, carports, patios, swimming pools, and fences". Planning staff made this determination since the proposed construction involves an accessory structure (detached garage).

SITE DESCRIPTION

The subject property is located at 4174 Maritime, a gently down-sloping lot on the South side of Maritime. The site is accessed off Maritime, which terminates at the intersection of Palos Verdes Drive South. The property is located in the Portuguese Bend Club Community, a gated community that lies within an appealable area of the City’s Coastal Setback Zone. The site is located on the seaward side of Maritime and is considered a "bluff top" lot, in that it is bound between the mean high tide line and the first public road. The subject property is in Subregion VI of the Coastal Specific Plan and is not located within the landslide moratorium area. The parcel measures 5,250 square-feet in area, and is developed with a 1,088 square-foot one (1) story single-family residence and a 404 square-foot attached two (2) car garage. The attached garage is currently accessed by a direct driveway off of Maritime. The lot contains fifty (50) feet of street frontage on the North side, an average lot depth of 105 feet, and fifty (50) feet along the South rear property line. The property line extends into and includes, half the width of Maritime, making Maritime a privately owned road. Subsequently, there is a sixteen (16) foot public right-of-way easement on the front of the property where development is prohibited. The lot is zoned RS-2, and is adjacent to other residential lots that are currently developed with one (1) story single-family residences.

From Maritime, a gentle front yard slope descends to the existing residence and attached two (2) car garage. Beyond the rear of the residence it begins to drastically slope down to the rear of the property at a slope between 30- and 40- percent where no structure is currently located. The residence and attached garage is currently setback 30’ from the easement on the front of the property. The residence is currently non-conforming with a side setback of 4’-8" (required 5’-0") from the property line on the West side and a rear setback of 13’-0" (required 15’-0") from the rear property line on the South side. The East side of the residence is currently conforming with a side setback of 5’-0". The existing open space on the property is 51%, which also is non-conforming with the City’s Development Code minimum of 60%, RS-2 open space standard.

When reviewing building permits for the lot, Staff established that the building is currently not in its original location. The residence was relocated from 634 Sea Bench Road in the Portuguese Bend landslide area in 1958 under Los Angeles County review due to landslide and erosion concerns. As a result, the house was moved to a smaller and more secure lot on Maritime, thus, creating a non-conforming but legal building since it was relocated to its current position before the incorporation of the City and the adoption of the City’s Development Code.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The applicant is proposing to demolish the existing attached 404 square-foot garage and construct a new detached three (3) car garage and six (6) foot high concrete wall. The proposed detached garage and wall will be located at the front of the residence and will encroach eleven (11) feet into the required front yard setback area, thereby maintaining a nine (9) foot setback from the public easement. The detached garage will be located at a grade elevation that is approximately three (3) feet higher than the main entrance to the house. Due to the grade difference between the buildings, the layout will require a series of outside steps from the garage to the main residence, even though the residence is a single story.

The resulting open space after construction will be 55%, which does not meet the City’s Development Code RS-2 minimum standards for open space of 60%, but will be an improvement from the original 51% of legal non-conforming open space. The applicant does not propose to add 50% or more to the existing floor area, therefore the non-conforming structure is not required to conform to current open space standards, in accordance with Development Code Section 17.84.060(E). However, the proposed garage and wall are required to conform to current setback requirements. Further, the height of the proposed garage will be 11’-8 5/8" measured from the highest point covered by the structure to the highest ridgeline of the structure. The lowest point covered by structure to the highest ridgeline will be 14’-2 5/8".

According to the City’s Coastal Specific Plan, the subject property is located within Subregion VI of the designated Coastal District. Therefore, any proposed development within the Coastal Zone requires a Coastal Permit that determines conformity with the City’s Coastal Specific Plan. Additionally, since the project site is located within an area that is between the mean high tide line and the first public road (Maritime), this portion of the Coastal District is defined as an "appealable" area, which means that a development application reviewed by the City is appealable to the California Coastal Commission. A decision on a development application involving a coastal Permit does not become final until the appeal process is exhausted with the California Coastal Commission.

CODE CONSIDERATION AND ANALYSIS

Variance:

Pursuant to Section 17.02.030 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, all structures must maintain a minimum front yard setback of twenty (20) feet from the front property line and five (5) feet from the side property line. Since the applicant is requesting a nine (9) foot front yard setback for the detached garage and wall, a Variance Application is required. In considering a Variance Application, Section 17.64.050 of the Development Code requires that the Planning Commission make four findings in reference to the subject property and the project under consideration (Development Code language in boldface, followed by Staff’s analysis in normal type)

  1. That 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.

As indicated above, the subject property is located within the Portuguese Bend Club, a gated, beach cottage community established in the late 1950’s under Los Angeles County’s review and development standards at that time. The lots are considerably smaller in area than other similarly zoned lots throughout the City. The minimum area for a newly created RS-2 zoned lot is 20,000 square feet. The subject lot is only 14,750 square-feet, which is smaller than the minimum lot size standard for an RS-2 zoned lot (approx. ¼ the size of a new RS-2 lot). Furthermore, the lot area is actually only 5,250 square-feet, after removing the private right-of-way easement area. Considering this, the lot is only ¼ the size of a new RS-2 zoned lot. Thus, because of the lot size and limitations found throughout the area, there are not many alternative layouts for the residences. Additionally, even though most of the homes are very modest in size, because of the severely substandard lot sizes, many, if not most of the homes in the area, are not able to meet the City’s minimum open space standards. This is true of the subject residence, which already does not satisfy the minimum 60% open space requirement with a current total of 51% open space.

In addition to the small size of the lot, the house is currently setback 4’-8" on the West side and 5’-0" on the East side, and therefore contains no area to construct a detached garage on either side of the residence. The only area available to construct a detached garage to the residence is at the front of the property where the proposed structure is located. Further, Staff has found that the property across the street was approved with a Variance, which allowed them to build an attached 2-½ car garage within the required twenty (20) foot setback area. In addition, the neighbor to the West was approved with a Variance, which allowed them to construct a six (6) foot wall in the required side setback area. The neighbor’s garage and wall to the East are also setback nine (9) feet from the public easement. Therefore, Staff believes that the existing structure configuration, public easement, and small lot size limit the area in which a detached three (3) car garage and six (6) foot high wall can be accommodated. As such, this finding can be made and adopted.

  1. 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.

The subject property is currently improved with a residential structure, an attached two (2) car garage, and a large deck in the rear of the residence. The expansion of the residence cannot be accommodated within the standards of the Development Code requirements due to physical constraints of the property. The area to the rear is not accessible from the street of access and contains a slope between 30- and 40- percent; and the areas to the West and East are already built out to their respected side setback areas. ike other parcels in the immediate vicinity, many contain a lot that cannot accommodate development without encroaching into setbacks, and thereby require a Variance application. The residences on both sides of the subject property contain garages and walls that are located in the required front setback area. The proposed garage and wall will be setback the same distance as others in the same neighborhood. The neighbors on both sides of the subject property have reduced front setbacks of approximately nine (9) feet. Due to the physical constraints of the subject property, the only feasible location to provide for a detached three (3) car garage and wall for the residence is towards the front yard area, which results in an encroachment into the required front yard setback area. Therefore, Staff believes that the variance requested is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of property rights similar to those enjoyed by other properties in the immediate vicinity of the subject property. As such, this finding can be made and adopted.

  1. 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.

The granting of the variance to allow a nine (9) foot front yard setback will not be detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to property in the area. A site visit was conducted by staff and determined that the detached garage will blend in well with surrounding structures nearby. The garage and wall will not have any adverse impacts to the homes in the surrounding area since it would not impair any views, create a loss of privacy or adversely affect the visual relationship with other adjacent properties. The size of the proposed garage and the reduced setback will be in conjunction with neighboring garages. Neighboring garages have a reduced setback of approximately nine (9) feet, which is the same as the proposed detached garage and wall. The roof design of the garage will tie in nicely with the existing design of the residence, but at a slightly higher elevation. The front façade of the garage and wall will follow an existing façade line along Maritime and will not appear out of character with the existing neighborhood. Therefore, Staff believes that granting the variance will not be detrimental to the public welfare and this finding can be adopted.

  1. 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 General Plan land use designation for the neighborhood within which the subject property is located is Residential, 1-2 DU/acre. The development of accessory structures and additions for single-family residences is consistent with this underlying land use designation. The addition is consistent with the General Plan’s goal to protect the general health, safety, and welfare of the community (Land Use Plan, Page 192-193) since they will be located in respect to setbacks, design and size of adjacent properties, which mitigates concerns of dominance of the structure. As such, Staff believes that granting the variance will not be contrary to the City’s General Plan; therefore, this finding can be made and adopted. The requirements and policies of the Coastal Specific Plan are discussed below under Coastal Permit.

Coastal Permit:

As previously indicated in this Staff Report, the subject property is located in the City’s designated Coastal Zone, and is considered a "bluff top" lot, located between the mean high tide line and the first public road (Maritime). Further, the subject property is located between the Coastal Structure Setback Line and the Coastal Setback Line.

According to the Development Code, a Coastal Permit is required for development within the Coastal Zone to assure that proposed improvements conform to the City’s Coastal Specific Plan. In considering an application for a Coastal Permit in an appealable area of the Coastal District, Section 17.72.090 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code requires that the Planning Commission positively make the following two findings (Development Code language in boldface, followed by Staff’s analysis in normal type):

  1. The proposed development is consistent with the Coastal Specific Plan.

The subject property is located in Subregion VI of the Coastal Specific Plan, which is located in one of the most Southern areas of the City’s coastal region. Subregion VI is bordered on the West by the active Portuguese Bend Landslide and on the East by vacant land identified as Subregion VII. At the time the City’s Coastal Specific Plan was adopted, the majority of the area was vacant and a small percentage of land developed with residential activity. According to the Coastal Specific Plan, residential activity is considered the most compatible land use designation for the area, from both a physical and fiscal perspective. Furthermore, the Plan suggests that commercial and institutional land uses within this area would not be compatible as residential. As a result of the Plan’s recommendations, this area is designated by the City’s Land Use Policy map as residential land use. Therefore, Staff believes that this finding can be made and adopted.

  1. The proposed development, when located between the sea and first public road, is consistent with the applicable public access and recreation policies of the Coastal act.

The subject property is an interior "bluff top" property that is located on the seaward side of Maritime. Although the subject property is located between the sea and the first public road (Maritime), the site does not provide public access to the shoreline or to recreational areas because of the extreme slope that exists between the top and toe of the bluff. Furthermore, the property does not extend to the coast, but is separated by adjacent vacant land. Pursuant to Section 30211 (a) of the Coastal Act, provisions state that the public’s right of access to the shoreline shall not be interfered with, as a condition of approval for the proposed development. However, Section 30212(b)(3) of the Coastal Act specifically exempts certain projects (improvements to a residence which do not change the intensity of its use where the floor area, height or bulk of a structure is not increased by more than ten (10%) percent, and the structure does not result in a seaward encroachment) from this provision. The proposed detached three (3) car garage will not increase the floor area and height of the existing structure by more than ten (10%) percent and will not result in a seaward encroachment. All of the existing residences on the south side of Maritime are located seaward of the Coastal Setback Line. The City’s Development Code allows one minor addition to a residence that is within this zone and existed as of December 26, 1975, given that the addition is less than 250 square-feet. The total net difference between the existing attached garage to be demolished and the proposed detached garage is 226 square-feet and less than the maximum allowed 250 square-feet. Therefore, Staff believes that this finding can be made since the subject property does not currently provide, nor will ever provide, public access to the shoreline and conforms to the policies of the Coastal Act.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Since the proposed garage is physically detached and incidental to the use of the main building it is considered an accessory structure and is limited to twelve (12) feet in height as measured from the lowest preconstruction grade adjacent to the foundation wall to ridge. As proposed, the detached garage will measure 14’-2 5/8" from the lowest preconstruction grade adjacent to the foundation wall to ridge. However, pursuant to Section 17.48.050 of the Development Code, a finding may be made that the detached garage will not have a significant impact on views, and the garage can be exempted from this limitation, but shall comply with any other height limitations of the Development Code, which is sixteen (16) feet for one (1) story structures. The project will not have a significant impact on views from surrounding properties due to the fact that the properties on the North side of Maritime currently have no significant protected view of the ocean. Residences located above, and to the North of Maritime, are located on an upslope and are higher in elevation. As a result, these residences will not have views affected by the project due to their higher elevation. Properties located next door will not be affected, as they have no viewing area on the North side of their property where the detached garage and wall will be located. Therefore, Staff feels that the detached garage may be constructed up to14’-2 5/8" as measured from the lowest foundation covered by structure to the top of the ridgeline.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the above analysis, Staff determined that the findings for Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00107) can be made to allow the construction of a 630 square-foot detached garage and six (6) foot high wall within the required twenty (20) foot front setback area. Therefore, Staff recommends approval of Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00107), subject to conditions of approval in Exhibit "A".

ALTERNATIVES

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

  1. Deny Variance & Coastal Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00107) with prejudice.
  2. Identify any issues of concern with the proposed project, provide Staff and/or the applicant with direction in modifying the project, and continue the public hearing to a date certain.

Please note that in the event that this item is continued beyond the December 29, 2001 action deadline, the applicant must agree to a 90-day extension of that deadline.

ATTACHMENTS:

  • P.C. Resolution No. 2001-______
  • Conditions of Approval for Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00107) - Exhibit "A"
  • Applicant’s "Burden of Proof" statement
  • Project Plans


P.C. RESOLUTION NO. 2001-___

A RESOLUTION OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES APPROVING VARIANCE AND COASTAL PERMIT (CASE NO. ZON2001-00107), THEREBY PERMITTING A 630 SQUARE-FOOT DETACHED THREE (3) CAR GARAGE AND SIX (6) FOOT HIGH CONCRETE WALL WITHIN THE TWENTY (20) FOOT FRONT YARD SETBACK AREA, LOCATED AT 4174 MARITIME.

WHEREAS, on December 11, 2001, the applicant, Mr. Eugene Summers, submitted Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. 2001-00107), requesting approval to construct a detached three (3) car garage and six (6) foot high concrete wall within the required twenty (20) foot front setback area on a bluff-top lot on the seaward side of Maritime; and,

WHEREAS, on October 30, 2001, the applications for Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. 2001-00107) were deemed complete by Staff; and,

WHEREAS, pursuant to the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code Sections 21000 et. seq. ("CEQA"), the State's CEQA Guidelines, California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Section 15000 et. seq., the City's Local CEQA Guidelines, and Government Code Section 65962.5(f) (Hazardous Waste and Substances Statement), Staff found no evidence that Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. 2001-00107) would have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore, the proposed project has been found to be categorically exempt under Class 1 (Section 15301); and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Ranchos Palos Verdes Development Code, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on December 11, 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: That the approved project includes the construction of a new detached three (3) car garage and a six (6) foot high concrete wall within the required twenty (20) foot front setback area.

Section 2: That 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 because all of the lots in the "lower" Portuguese Bend Club community are much smaller than the minimum 20,000 square-foot lot required by the RS-2 zoning district standards, and few of these homes meet the RS-2 setback or open space requirements. These factors constitute exceptional or extraordinary circumstances that do not generally apply to other RS-2 zoned properties in the City.

Section 3: That the 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 because the Portuguese Bend Club community on Maritime is a unique area and most of the existing lots and structures do not meet current City development standards. Previous additions, garages, and walls built in the surrounding area have approved Variances, usually for setback encroachments and lot coverage. The subject property is typical of homes and properties on Maritime in that it does not comply with the RS-2 development standards. Therefore, a Variance would be necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of property rights similar to those enjoyed by others in the immediate vicinity of the subject property.

Section 4: That the requested Variance would not be materially detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to property and improvements in the area in which the property is located since it would not impair any views, create a loss of privacy or adversely affect the visual relationship with other adjacent properties. The size of the proposed garage and the reduced setback will be in conjunction with neighboring garages and will not appear out of character. Furthermore, no opposition to the development has been stated.

Section 5: That granting the variance will not be contrary to the objectives of the General Plan and the policies and requirements of the Coastal Specific Plan. The development of accessory structures (i.e., detached garage) for a single family residence is consistent with the RS-2 underlying land use designation since the Development Code allows for such structures to be constructed as an ancillary use to the residential use of the property. The accessory structure and wall into the required front setback area will not be detrimental to the public welfare, or injurious to property and improvements in the area since they will be located in respect to setbacks, design and size of adjacent properties, which mitigates concerns of dominance of the structure. In addition, the applicants have submitted geotechnical studies to demonstrate that the design and setbacks are adequate to insure public safety. Policies and requirements of the Coastal Specific Plan are discussed below under Section 2.

Section 6: That the proposed development is consistent with the Coastal Specific Plan since residential activity is considered the most compatible land use designation for the area, from both a physical and fiscal perspective. Furthermore, the Plan suggests that commercial and institutional land uses within this area would not be compatible as residential.

Section 7: That the proposed development, which is located between the sea and the first public road, is consistent with applicable public access and recreation policies of the Coastal Act since the site does not provide public access to the shoreline or to recreational areas because of the extreme slope that exists between the top and toe of the bluff.

Section 8: Any interested person aggrieved by this decision or any portion of this decision may appeal to the City Council. Pursuant to Sections 17.64.060, 17.72.100 and 17.76.040(E)(9) 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 January 2, 2002.

Section 9: 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 Variance and Coastal Permit (Case No. 2001-00107), thereby permitting the construction of a detached three (3) car garage and six (6) foot high concrete wall within the required front setback area, located at 4174 Maritime, 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 11th day of December 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

Variance & Coastal Permit (Case No. ZON2001-00107)

GENERAL

  1. Prior to the submittal of plans into Building and Safety plan check, the applicant and/or 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 approval. Failure to provide said written statement within ninety (90) days following the date of this approval shall render this approval null and void.
  2. The approval shall become null and void after one (1) year from the date of approval by the Planning Commission, unless the approved plans are submitted to the Building and Safety Division to initiate the "plan check" review process.
  3. The project shall allow demolition of the existing attached 404 square-foot garage and the construction of a new detached three (3) car garage and six (6) foot high concrete wall. The detached garage and wall will be located at the front of the residence and will encroach eleven (11) feet into the required front yard setback area, thereby maintaining a nine (9) foot setback from the public easement.
  4. Grading is not permitted with the approval.
  5. The proposed project shall be constructed in substantial compliance with the plans approved and stamped by the Planning Department with the effective date of this approval.
  6. The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement is authorized to make minor modifications to the approved plans or any of the conditions if such modifications achieve substantially the same results as would strict compliance with said plans and conditions.
  7. Unless considered a minor modification, as defined in the above Condition No. 6, all modifications to the approved plans or conditions of approval set forth herein, shall be reviewed by the Planning Commission using the same noticing and hearing procedures as the original application.
  8. This approval shall not become valid until ten (10) working days following the final City action, provided no appeal has been filed to the California Coastal Commission.
  9. The proposed project shall be conducted in full compliance with the conditions set forth herein.
  10. In the event that a Planning requirement and a Building & Safety requirement are in conflict with one another, the stricter standard shall apply.
  11. The hours of construction shall be limited to 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday through Saturday. No construction shall be permitted on Sundays or on legal holidays.
  12. The construction site shall be kept free of all loose materials resembling trash and debris in excess of that material used for immediate construction purposes. Such excess material may include, but is not limited to: the accumulation of debris, garbage, lumber, scrap metal, concrete, asphalt, piles of earth, salvage materials, abandoned or discarded furniture, appliances or other household fixtures.

VARIANCE

  1. The new detached garage shall maintain the following minimum setbacks:

    - 9’-0" front yard (proposed 9’-0")
    - 13’-0" rear yard (proposed 13’-0")
    - 5’-0" side setback (proposed 5’-0")

  1. The maximum height of the detached garage shall not exceed sixteen (16) feet, as measured from the lowest point of existing grade covered by the structure to ridge. (proposed measurement from lowest point covered by structure to ridge: 14’-2 5/8")
    (proposed measurement from highest point covered by structure to ridge: 11’-2 5/8")
  2. Each of the three (3) enclosed parking spaces in the garage shall have an unobstructed ground space of no less than nine (9) feet in width by twenty (20) feet in depth, with a minimum of seven feet of vertical clearance.
  3. The resulting open space of the lot after construction shall not be less than 55%.
  4. The maximum height of the new concrete wall, including any lights or decorative features, may not exceed six (6) feet in height.

COASTAL PERMIT

  1. The replacement of the old (404 square-feet) garage with the new detached garage (630 square-feet) shall not result in an addition that exceeds exceed 250 square-feet in size.

  2. (proposed 226 square-feet)

NEW BUSINESS:






9. SELECTION OF MEMBERS FOR COMMITTEE - NEIGHBORHOOD COMPATIBILITY:



TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING, AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: DECEMBER 11, 2001

SUBJECT: NEIGHBORHOOD COMPATIBILITY COMMITTEE APPOINTMENTS

RECOMMENDATION

Appoint two Planning Commissioners to serve on the City’s Neighborhood Compatibility Sub-Committee.

DISCUSSION

As the Commission is aware, the City Council has been contemplating whether to make amendments to the City’s existing "neighborhood compatibility" review process. At the Council’s December 4th meeting, the Council agreed to form a committee made up of two Council members and two Planning Commissioners to study the matter. The purpose of the Committee is to obtain feedback from the Council of Homeowners, evaluate the issue and report back to the City Council with a recommendation after 3 months. The Council appointed Councilman Peter Gardiner and Councilman Larry Clark to serve on the committee. Staff now recommends that the Planning Commission appoint its representatives for the Committee.


ITEMS TO BE PLACED ON FUTURE AGENDAS:


Staff



10. PRE-AGENDA FOR THE MEETING OF JANUARY 8, 2002.


PLANNING COMMISSION
PRE-AGENDA
TUESDAY, JANUARY 8, 2002

CONSENT CALENDAR:


1. MINUTES OF DECEMBER 11, 2001


CONTINUED BUSINESS:(NO ITEMS)



PUBLIC HEARINGS:



3. GRADING PERMIT NO. 2191: Larry Peha (applicant) and Mr. and Mrs. Heru Wiredja (owner), 3815 Palos Verdes Drive South (AM).


Consider amending Condition No. 19 of P.C. Resolution No. 2001-36 adopted by the Planning Commission at its October 9th meeting.


NEW BUSINESS:(NO ITEMS)


Commission


ADJOURNMENT:


The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday,
January 8, 2002, 7:00 P.M. at Hesse Park.