CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES
PLANNING COMMISSION MINUTES
APRIL 25, 2006
CALL TO ORDER
The meeting was called to order by Chairman Knight at 7:05 p.m. at the Fred Hesse Community Room, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard.
Vice Chairman Gerstner led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Present: Commissioners Karp, Lewis, Perestam, Ruttenberg, Vice Chairman Gerstner, and Chairman Knight. Commissioner Tetreault arrived at 7:10 p.m.
Also present were Deputy Director Pfost, Senior Planner Schonborn, Associate Planner Fox, and Assistant Planner Kim.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
The agenda was unanimously approved as presented.
Staff distributed one item of correspondence for Agenda Item No. 4. Deputy Director Pfost also stated that the appeal of the Planning Commission decision for 6010 Ocean Terrace Drive will be heard by the City Council on May 2, 2006.
COMMENTS FROM THE AUDIENCE (regarding non-agenda items)
1. Height Variation Permit, Grading Permit and Variance – Time Extension (ZON2003-00465): 4348 Via Frascati
Assistant Planner Kim presented the staff report, explaining that the applicant has requested a one-year time extension. She noted that the Development Code allow the Planning Commission to grant a time extension up to one year upon showing of substantial hardship or delays beyond the control of the applicant, or other good cause. Therefore, staff is recommending the approval of a one-year time extension on the project.
Commissioner Ruttenberg asked staff, other than the letter requesting a time extension because of personal reason, if there was any other information available for the request.
Assistant Planner Kim answered that the letter was the only information available to staff.
Commissioner Ruttenberg asked if the Planning Commission was allowed to give extensions of less than one year, or only one year.
Assistant Planner Kim answered that the Planning Commission could grant an extension for any time period up to one year.
Commissioner Tetreault asked whether the submitted letter from the architect, being very generalized, meets the City’s standards for establishing hardship.
Deputy Director Pfost explained that in the past the City has received similar letters from architects, who are the applicants, requesting extensions which have been granted.
Commissioner Tetreault stated that he accepts that the City has, in the past, found this type of request to be sufficient to warrant the granting of the one-year extension just by having someone say there are personal issues. However, he was not sure he could see the distinction between that and an applicant merely requesting more time. He felt that having language saying one must establish a substantal hardship means more than an applicant just requesting more time. However, seeing how the City has accepted such a request in the past, he would accept this request.
Chairman Knight asked staff, in terms of a general request such as this, if it has been the general policy of the City to accept the request on face value and grant the extension.
Deputy Director Pfost answered that the City has accepted these types of requests in the past, noting that the Development Code does allow granting the extension upon showing of substantial hardship, delays beyond the control of the applicant, or other good cause. He noted that the Development Code allows only one extension.
Commissioner Ruttenberg stated that the Code says the Planning Commission may grant an extension of time, however he felt that to grant an extension when the applicant merely says he has personal issues without further defining them does not come close to meeting the standards set in the Code. He felt the Planning Commission is obligated to follow the Ordinance.
Commissioner Karp felt this was all nonsense and that the Planning Commission should grant the extension. He didn’t feel there was any downside to anyone involved in granting the extension and if the applicant feels he needs the extension because of personal reasons, then the Planning Commission should grant the extension.
Chairman Knight had no problem in granting the requested extension, as construction has not started and there would be no impact to the neighbors and it has been the City’s policy in the past to grant these extension requests.
Commissioner Tetreault moved to continue the item to the next Planning Commission meeting so that, in order to comply with the Code, the applicant can state in a letter upon what grounds in the Code the extension request is based on, seconded by Commissioner Ruttenberg. Approved, (4-3) with Commissioners Karp, Lewis, and Vice Chairman Gerstner dissenting.
2. Height Variation Permit (Case No. ZON2005-00074): 29225 Oceanridge Dr.
Deputy Director Pfost presented the staff report, explaining this is a request by both the applicant and staff to continue the item to May 9, 2006 to allow the applicant to work out issues related to the project.
Commissioner Tetreault moved to continue the item to May 9, 2006, seconded by Commissioner Ruttenberg. Approved, (7-0).
3. Height Variation Permit (Case No. ZON2005-00409): 30831 Rue Langlois
Senior Planner Schonborn presented the staff report, explaining the scope of the project and the need for the Height Variation. He explained that in the analysis, staff found no issues with view impairment, however did find issues with neighborhood compatibility and privacy. He noted that the proposed residence will be over twice the size of the average home in the immediate neighborhood. He also noted issues with bulk and mass, especially when viewed from Palos Verdes Drive West, Rue Valois, and Rue Beaupre. He explained that this residence is on a corner leading into the development, and therefore is very high profile. He explained that staff felt the design of the residence was more compatible with the homes across the street at Oceanfront Estates and was not compatible with the design of the homes in the immediate neighborhood. Regarding privacy, staff felt that the proposed balconies allow for observation into the neighboring rear yard. Therefore, staff was recommending the project be denied, without prejudice.
Commissioner Karp asked if it would be possible to dig down on the lot to create a home that wasn’t as tall and massive.
Senior Planner Schonborn answered that would be an alternative, abut would require a Grading Permit and the appropriate analysis.
Chairman Knight noted that the plan shows roof elevations of 2:12 or lower and that a clay tile roof cannot be used on this roof pitch. He asked staff if there has been a suggestion of what type of roof material will be used on the lower roof slopes.
Senior Planner Schonborn answered that staff was not aware of what type of roofing material would be used.
Chairman Knight asked if the applicant was aware of the wall height limitations in the visibility triangle.
Senior Planner Schonborn stated that the applicant is aware of the limitations, however he noted that this is an existing situation that would not be modified and not a proposed part of the project.
Chairman Knight opened the public hearing.
Barry Thomas, Whittier (architect) stated that out of the eight major categories listed in the staff report, he has complied with almost 90 percent of the items. He stated that the main item staff felt was not complied with was the scale of the project. He explained that since the project was submitted there have been three or four major revisions to the design in terms of stepping back the size and mass of the structure. He explained that in the process of obtaining neighborhood compatibility signatures, at least 30 percent of the neighbors had no objections and were considering the expansion of their own homes. He stated that he was open to making some revisions to the glazing in the rear of the house. He explained that the setback requirements have been met, and the lot coverage is less than 40 percent. He pointed out that most of the homes in the neighborhood are 66 years old, noting that the current trend in new homes is for larger homes with newer features and high design appeal, such as those at Oceanfront Estates. He stated that he has employed many design techniques to minimize the mass of the home. He stated that he is willing to work with the Planning Commission and staff, however asked that the size not be modified.
Commissioner Lewis asked Mr. Thomas for feedback regarding the privacy issue and the pattern of setbacks raised in the staff report.
Mr. Thomas stated that the proposed residence is not encroaching more than 2 ½ feet beyond the existing structure line at the rear, and is still within the setback requirements allowed by the City. He felt that it goes back to the question of complying with what has been there for 66 years or move forward. Regarding the privacy issue with the balcony, he noted that the neighbor’s residence only has one window in that location. He stated he would be willing to work with the neighbor and staff regarding the privacy issue.
Chairman Knight asked what type of roofing material would be used on the lower pitched roof areas.
Mr. Thomas answered that he is proposing a synthetic material for the roof, which looks like clay.
Chairman Knight closed the public hearing.
Commissioner Karp noted that this property is unique in that it almost appears there are three front yards, as the property is surrounded by streets on three sides, and asked staff to clarify the situation.
Senior Planner Schonborn displayed an aerial photograph of the property and clarified the front, side, and rear yards.
Commissioner Tetreault agreed with the staff’s analysis of the project, and could not see how this house as presently submitted is even close to being compatible with the neighborhood. He felt the house would be a very large home in comparison to the other homes in the neighborhood, and the size and scale were not even close to what is currently in the neighborhood.
Commissioner Perestam also agreed with the findings in the staff report. He too felt that the house was much too large for the neighborhood and not compatible in design, bulk, and mass.
Vice Chairman Gerstner agreed that the proposed home is much larger than the adjacent homes, however he noted that this is a very unique piece of property in that it is bounded on three sides by streets and has a major thoroughfare along one side that is not the front yard. Therefore, he felt that most of the people who experience this house and are overwhelmed by it are doing so from their moving cars. He noted that this residence only abuts one other property and the proposed residence does not infringe on the views of the ocean or any other significant views. Therefore, he felt this neighborhood could handle the growth that is currently demanded by society. He felt this house may still be too large, however this piece of property can deal with this type of change better than most.
Commissioner Karp stated that he has gone on record many times stating that residents should be allowed to build bigger houses because the housing stock is changing and people want bigger houses. He felt, however, that this proposal was out of character and scale with the surrounding neighborhood.
Commissioner Lewis stated that he agreed with the Vice Chairman’s comments.
Commissioner Ruttenberg also agreed with the Vice Chairman’s comments, adding that there have been no objections from the neighbors regarding the proposed residence. He felt, however, that the proposed house is a little too large for the neighborhood and should be scaled back.
Chairman Knight agreed with the staff report in terms of bulk and mass of the proposed house. He felt that this house is more compatible with the homes at Oceanfront Estates, noting that those homes are in a different subdivision with their own standards and has a different zoning. He stated that he would like to see a sample of the roofing material for the sections that are below a 2 ½: 12 pitch.
Commissioner Lewis stated that it will be very significant to his decision that this property is bounded on three sides by streets, and that his vote may not be the same if this particular plan were proposed to be sandwiched between two properties.
Commissioner Tetreault stated that in the past the Planning Commission has given applicants some suggestions as to what can be done to make the project more compatible with the neighborhood. However, in this particular situation he felt the project was so ambitious he was not able to pinpoint what needed to be done to make the project more compatible, and would rather see a very different project.
Commissioner Perestam agreed, stating that there is quite a bit of bulk and mass, and architecturally he did not know how to compensate for that. He felt that because the house is surrounded on three sides by streets the project will be more visible and would be more difficult to hide or mask the bulk and mass.
Commissioner Tetreault moved staff’s recommendation to deny the application without prejudice, seconded by Commissioner Karp.
Commissioner Karp stated that this is a very difficult project, noting that he wished he could give the architect very specific suggestions on how to redesign the project, however he could not articulate what could be done to minimize the bulk and mass of the project.
Commissioner Ruttenberg stated that there is an applicant and architect present who have indicated they are willing to try to work with the City, and to deny the project would not be fair under those circumstances. He stated that there is a July deadline and therefore the Planning Commission has time to help the applicant and architect get the project approved.
Commissioner Tetreault felt that was a very good point. He noted that, as a stand-alone project, he found the design of the house to be very pleasing. However, because of neighborhood compatibility, he was not able to accept this project as currently designed. He asked staff to clarify the options available to the applicant and Planning Commission.
Senior Planner Schonborn explained that the action deadline for this project is July 16th, which allows for additional time for the applicant to redesign the project. He stated that the Planning Commission can direct the applicant to redesign the project to address the issues of bulk and mass that have been expressed by staff and the Planning Commission. He noted that there is still enough time to also modify the silhouette, if needed.
With that, Commissioner Tetreault withdrew his motion and Commissioner Karp withdrew his second.
Chairman Knight re-opened the public hearing.
Chairman Knight asked Mr. Thomas when he thought he could have plans ready for staff to present to the Planning Commission.
Mr. Thomas stated he does not want to wait for a June meeting and would like to present revised plans at the next Planning Commission hearing, realizing that he would have to have plans to staff by Monday at the latest. He stated, however, that he has not been given much direction as to what the Planning Commission is looking for in these revised plans.
Chairman Knight closed the public hearing.
Commissioner Ruttenberg asked if re-silhouetting would be required if the mass is reduced so that the new silhouette is not more massive in any direction.
Senior Planner Schonborn stated that there could be a scenario where if the mass is reduced and the building footprint is not enlarged, a new silhouette may not be required.
Commissioner Tetreault moved to continue the public hearing to May 9, 2006 to allow the applicant to work with staff to redesign the project to address the concerns of neighborhood compatibility, bulk, and mass, seconded by Commissioner Karp. Approved, (6-1) with Vice Chairman Gerstner dissenting.
4. Height Variation and Site Plan Review (Case No. ZON2003-00557): 28217 Trailriders Drive
Associate Planner Fox presented the staff report, stating the applicant has requested a continuance of the item to either May 23rd or June 13th in order to make modifications to the proposed plans.
Deputy Director Pfost noted that the May 23rd meeting is rather full and suggested continuing the item to June 13th.
Vice Chairman Gerstner moved to continue the public hearing to June 13, 2006, seconded by Commissioner Tetreault. Approved, (7-0).
RECESS AND RECONVENE
At 8:20 p.m. the Planning Commission took a short recess until 8:30 p.m. at which time they reconvened.
PUBLIC HEARINGS (cont)
5. Grading Permit (Case No. ZON2004-00517): 30142 Cartier Drive
Associate Planner Fox presented the staff report, explaining the scope of the project and the need for the Grading Permit. He stated that staff believed all of the required findings to approve the Grading Permit could be made, and noted that staff had received no comments from the neighbors.
Vice Chairman Gerstner asked staff if this proposed house would be similar in characteristics to the house currently being built adjacent to the subject property.
Associate Planner Fox stated that the two houses are very similar in terms of bulk, mass, and style.
Commissioner Ruttenberg asked if the house currently being built was approved by the Planning Commission.
Senior Planner Fox answered that the neighboring house was approved by the Planning Commission.
Commissioner Perestam noted that at the neighboring house there is a retaining wall at the front of the property, and asked staff if there will be a similar retaining wall at the subject property.
Associate Planner Fox stated that there is a similar 36-inch wall proposed at the subject property line.
Chairman Knight referred to Condition No. 10 regarding construction hours. He noted that he has heard complaints that construction trucks have arrived at various jobs as early as 6 a.m. and sit with their engines idling until 7 a.m. when they can start construction. He questioned if there was a way to add language to the condition to prevent this situation from happening.
Associate Planner Fox referred to Condition No. 23 regarding the haul route, and suggested adding language to deal with the truck arrivals,
Chairman Knight opened the public hearing.
Angie Liu (representing Ashai Design, Architect) stated she was available to answer any questions.
There being no questions, Chairman Knight closed the public hearing.
Commissioner Perestam stated that he supports staff’s recommendations for approval of the project.
Commissioner Tetreault also agreed with staff’s recommendations, as he was able to make all of the necessary findings.
Commissioner Perestam moved to adopt P.C. Resolution 2006-22 thereby approving the requested Grading Permit, as amended to add language addressing the construction hours and the early arrival of construction trucks, seconded by Commissioner Tetreault. Approved, (7-0).
6. Code Amendment – Cargo Containers (Case No. ZON2004-00265): City
On advice from the City Attorney, Chairman Knight recused himself from the public hearing and left the room. Vice Chairman Gerstner conducted the public hearing.
Associate Planner Fox presented the staff report, giving a brief history of the previous hearings involved with the project. He explained that the Planning Commission had previously adopted a Resolution regarding the cargo containers and City Council was due to hear this issue, however before the hearing the Director and Building Official added language that has not been reviewed by the Planning Commission, and therefore the matter is back for review of the added language. He explained the new language added and the reason for the language being added. He stated that staff was recommending the Planning Commission adopt the draft Resolution, which recommends the City Council adopt the addendum to the previous Negative Declaration and approve the Cargo Container Code Amendment.
Commissioner Perestam referred to the long term uses outside of the Portuguese Bend area on page 4. He recalled the Planning Commission deciding that there would be no long term use of cargo containers outside the Portuguese Bend area, residential or commercial, however that is not what is before the Planning Commission in the draft language.
Associate Planner Fox explained that the language at the top of page 4, with the exception of the phrase “longer than one year”, is the language the Planning Commission adopted in September 2005.
In reading the text, Commissioner Tetreault felt that the language was clear that long-term use would be permitted for City use on City property and for Portuguese Bend area uses.
Commissioner Karp felt the intention of the Planning Commission was to not prohibit the use of cargo containers in commercial areas, provided certain criteria are met. Therefore, he questioned whether the wording should be modified to better reflect that intent.
Commissioner Perestam agreed, noting that he wanted to make sure the Planning Commission adopts the correct language and not send something to the City Council that is something different than what the Planning Commission thought they were recommending.
Commissioner Tetreault stated that, at the invitation of a resident, he was able to drive around the Portuguese Bend area and observe the many cargo containers currently in use or about to be used. He asked staff, to their knowledge, how many of these containers are currently permitted.
Associate Planner Fox answered that to staff’s knowledge the only container that has Planning Department approval through their Conditional Large Domestic Animal Permit is the storage container at the Pony Club. He noted that there is no building permit for that storage container.
Commissioner Tetreault stated that he observed cargo containers in the area which are definitely being used as habitable space, having a front door and garden windows.
Commissioner Karp referred to the language on page 6 stating that cargo containers should not be used to store hazardous material. He disagreed, noting that he would rather see hazardous materials in commercial districts stored in the cargo container rather than in the commercial structure.
Associate Planner Fox stated that this is a health and safety issue, and pointed out that the only situation permitting long-term use of the storage containers are for City uses and activities in the Portuguese Bend area.
Commissioner Karp felt it would be quite beneficial for commercial uses, and possibly the Planning Commission erred in not allowing long-term use in commercial districts.
Commissioner Ruttenberg asked if there was a grandfather clause included in the language.
Associate Planner Fox stated that there is no grandfathering provision currently in the Code, and therefore there would be no legally established non-conforming uses of cargo containers.
Commissioner Tetreault stated that, while the goal of the Ordinance is to control the use of cargo containers, he did not see how permitting cargo containers in an area where he saw 20 to 30 existing containers would control the use. He stated that these containers are there and have been for a long time, and people are living inside some of these containers, the containers are not level, they’re not painted, and they’re not screened. He was not sure that by requiring people to get permits for the containers would be controlling the use of the containers. He was also concerned that the Building Official is very much opposed to allowing the cargo containers to go in without foundations. He did not feel he is in a position to second-guess the City’s Building Official. He felt that if the Building Official has a safety concern regarding these containers then he did not feel the Planning Commission was in a position to veto that concern. Further, if the cargo containers have to have a foundation then the reason for having the cargo containers evaporates, because with a foundation a structure other than a cargo container can be built. Therefore, he was no longer in favor of what the Planning Commission had previously done, especially with the comments received from the Building Official.
Commissioner Karp felt that Portuguese Bend is a unique area which requires some flexibility. He referred to a letter submitted by Robert McJones, who he felt was more qualified as an engineer than the Building Official to discuss structural matters. He noted that Mr. McJones felt that cargo containers do not need a foundation, pointing out that cargo containers are stacked 5 to 6 high on ships that go through very rough weather. He felt the Planning Commission should divide their thinking between the Portuguese Bend and the rest of the City. He discussed the use of cargo containers in commercial areas, noting that a container that is properly painted, shielded, and does not take away required parking areas is a better solution to storing surplus materials than all over the outside area. He felt that storage containers should be allowed to store hazardous materials, as it would be safer than storing them in the occupied building. Thirdly, he did not think it was necessary to have a 10-foot separation between cargo containers, as it would become a catchall for more dirt and debris.
Commissioner Lewis noted that he was not a part of the last 8 hearings regarding the cargo containers and asked staff if there was any reason he should not be allowed to vote on the issue at this meeting.
Associate Planner Fox explained that if any Commissioner has missed any of the hearings they can still vote on the issue if they feel they have enough background information from reading the minutes or viewing the videos of the meetings.
Commissioner Lewis agreed with the comments of Commissioner Tetreault, especially those regarding the concerns of the Building Official.
Vice Chairman Gerstner asked if the City currently has any method in place to require cargo containers be removed from a property.
Associate Planner Fox stated that it is currently a code enforcement issue, noting that there is one open code enforcement case that relates to cargo containers.
Commissioner Perestam was very concerned with the existing use of the cargo containers in the Portuguese Bend area and, beside the argument for the need of a foundation, he did not see the need for cargo containers in the Portuguese Bend area. He was very concerned to hear people were using cargo containers for habitable use. He did not think this Ordinance would be enough to get control of the use of cargo containers in residential areas.
Commissioner Ruttenberg supported Commissioner Karp’s comments regarding the use of cargo containers in commercial areas. He did not like the language regarding temporary short term uses on page 2, specifically A-1, as he felt this was a “catchall” and should be eliminated. He felt that items 2, 3, and 4 on page 3 are appropriate for short-term uses. On page 4 for the long-term uses, he felt that the City uses are appropriate, but did not like the “catchall” phrase which is B-2-a. On page 5 he felt the building alternative foundation is appropriate, but was not informed enough to comment on the equestrian facility uses. He suggested adding another subsection to address the commercially zoned properties.
Vice Chairman Gerstner reviewed Commissioner Ruttenberg’s suggestions for short term use on page 2 and asked if any Commissioners felt that the Planning Commission should allow the short term uses as defined in the Section A-1.
Commissioner Tetreault felt that Commissioner Ruttengerg’s comments are well taken in that allowable uses should be very clearly defined.
Vice Chairman Gerstner summarized the comments by stating that the Planning Commission would like to adjust Subsection A so that it limits the uses to only those items noted in paragraphs 2, 3, and 4. Further, under long-term uses, add a Subsection B-3 to allow long-term storage in commercial districts.
Associate Planner Fox stated this does not allow for the short-term use on commercially zoned property.
Commissioner Ruttenberg questioned why the Planning Commission would not allow short-term commercial storage.
Deputy Director Pfost suggested taking the cargo container dimensions that are mentioned in Subsection A-1 on page 2, and by putting them into the definition in Section 17.96.345 and then deleting Subsection A-1 and renumber 2, 3 and 4, the temporary uses should be covered.
The Planning Commission agreed.
In discussing long-term use on Page 4, Commissioner Perestam suggested striking B2(a), as he felt the intent of the Planning Commission was to not encourage long-term use of cargo containers in commercial zones.
Commissioner Tetreault understood the need for long-term storage in commercial zones, however he was hesitant to encourage anyone to do something that would make the City not as pretty as it currently is.
Commissioner Karp felt it would be safer to store hazardous materials in a cargo container rather than in the business establishment. He stated that he did not want the containers visible from the street or take any necessary parking spaces in the commercial district.
Commissioner Ruttenberg suggested using the language regarding cargo containers in the Portuguese Bend area regarding screening, etc., to describe the situations in which a cargo container may be used in commercial areas.
Commissioner Lewis noted that language would have to be added regarding parking.
Commissioner Tetreault stated that he could agree to the long term use of cargo containers in commercial zones knowing that it would be approved at the Director’s discretion, understanding the Commission’s concerns are the aesthetics.
Vice Chairman Gerstner agreed, however he felt language should be included that requires long term cargo containers in a commercial zone be periodically reviewed by the Director.
Commissioner Tetreault asked if this would affect school property use.
Associate Planner Fox stated that schools could use cargo containers for short-term use but not long-term use.
Vice Chairman Gerstner thought schools were under a different jurisdiction.
Associate Planner Fox explained that if the purpose of the containers were related to classroom instruction it would be beyond the purview of the City’s Zoning Code to regulate.
Commissioner Tetreault was concerned about the use of the cargo containers on school sites that are used by soccer, Little League, and other organized sports and did not want to have rules where these uses would no longer be allowed.
Commissioner Karp noted that many of these containers on school sites also hold the emergency supplies for the school.
Deputy Director Pfost suggested language that would include commercial and institutional zoning districts for long-term use on of cargo containers.
Commissioner Ruttenberg asked if there will be a period of time allowed for the existing cargo containers that do not comply to be removed.
Associate Planner Fox stated staff would have to defer to the City Attorney, noting that there are provisions in other sections of the Code that have amortization schedules.
Commissioner Tetreault questioned the need for a cargo container for equestrian uses. He felt that, in most cases, a 120 square foot pre-fabricated accessory structure that doesn’t need a permit would suffice.
Commissioner Tetreault summarized the discussion regarding long term use of cargo container by stating that the use be allowed in commercial, institutional, and City uses. Such use would have to meet all applicable development standards and subject to the review of the Planning Director.
Commissioner Perestam felt there should be some sort of trigger included that would regulate when the cargo container application should come before the Planning Commission rather than be a Director approval.
Vice Chairman Gerstner suggested that if more than one cargo container is requested for a property that it then come to the Planning Commission. He also asked staff to provide information as to why the cargo containers have to be 10 feet apart, and if there are any Code issues with storing hazardous materials in the cargo containers.
Commissioner Tetreault continued his summarization by stating the special exception of Portuguese Bend long-term storage be eliminated.
Vice Chairman Gerstner discussed the use of cargo containers as an alternate building foundation and did not think the use was any more successful in solving the problem than the use of a steel moment frame or I-beams. He felt this was a unique approach to solving the problem, however he didn’t feel there was anything inherent in this solution that makes it capable of solving the problem and the conventional method incapable of solving the problem.
Commissioner Tetreault objected to the aesthetics and the temptation to live inside of the cargo containers when used for this purpose.
Vice Chairman Gerstner stated he was not in favor of encouraging residents to start designing foundations with cargo containers.
Commissioner Karp felt that before making a decision he would like to hear from the people who use the cargo containers for a foundation, as they may have some benefits that the Planning Commission doesn’t know about or understand. He didn’t feel the Planning Commission had the proper data to make a determination without hearing from those who use the cargo containers for a foundation.
Commissioner Perestam agreed, adding that if it is determined that cargo containers not be allowed for foundations there should be a different time frame for the replacement, as this would entail replacing a foundation in a home.
Commissioner Ruttenberg suggested the Building Official come to the next meeting to discuss his reasons for wanting cargo containers on foundations.
Commissioner Ruttenberg moved to continue the public hearing to June 13, 2006 and directed staff to revise the draft language pursuant to the comments made by the Planning Commission, seconded by Commissioner Karp.
Commissioner Tetreault requested at the June 13th meeting staff have additional information regarding alternative foundations and grandfathering existing structures.
Associate Planner Fox asked if the Planning Commission would like the Building Official present at the June 13th meeting.
The Planning Commission agreed the Building Official should be present at the June 13th meeting.
Commissioner Karp also requested that Mr. McJones or someone who supports the use of cargo containers as an alternate foundation be present at the meeting to rebut the Building Officials comments.
The motion to continue the Public Hearing to June 13, 2006 was approved, (7-0).
Chairman Knight returned to the dais.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
7. Minutes of March 28, 2006
Commissioner Tetreault moved to approve the minutes as presented, seconded by Commissioner Perestam. Approved, (7-0).
8. Minutes of April 11, 2006
Commissioner Ruttenberg referred to page 4 of the minutes and asked staff to review the tape of the meeting to determine if Mr. Hoffman had additional comments about the possibility of, in the future, his neighbor changing his mind regarding the height of the hedge and privacy.
Commissioner Perestam moved to approve the minutes, as potentially amended, seconded by Commissioner Ruttenberg. Approved, (6-0-1) with Commissioner Tetreault abstaining since he was absent from that meeting.
ITEMS TO BE PLACED ON FUTURE AGENDAS
9. Pre-Agenda for the meeting of May 8, 2006
Commissioner Karp stated he would be absent from the next two Planning Commission meetings.
The meeting was adjourned at 10:38 p.m.