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tv   [untitled]    May 4, 2014 5:00am-5:31am PDT

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we understand this commission does not carry that transaction. so i ask to you please - i ask you to respect my right to testify about issues that are important to me and my neighbors. what we ask of you is to prevent building additions to contradicting longstanding rules and overwhelming other units. >> thank you. additional speakers? seeing none, project sponsor, you have five minutes.
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>> if i could start the clock when i am ready, i would really appreciate it, because i only have five minutes. (please standby for captioning)
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even within her accommodation the requester, no matter what development does no address the main goal which is the increase rear setback and none of the recommendations do. building scale and compatibility toward surrounding building, the block surrounding 1110 ashbury shows it's a plot map that shows you ale buildings highlighted in "pacific building are 4-5 story and this is 15 out of 29 lot and more than half of the buildings have for our more
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stories. haptain line and provide adequate setback. this shows the various articulations as i worked with the requester to address her needs for light and we're setting the building 4' back and 5' back on the top floor and in addition to that the building articulated to the east. this is an enormous light well. it's an absolutely enormous light well. there are five other conditions on this block that show a transition between two buildings of different heights.
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here is one. two. three. four and five. for this building over here i managed to take a picture from the rear as well. so we can see what we are talking about. i want to point out a few more facts nearly 30% of the addition -- the rear of building is only 10' above ground. and the shadow analysis shows little to no significant -- all the photos that you saw were taken december 21st, the shortest day of the year. >> thank you. >> rest of the year is not a problem. thank you. >> thank you. other public speakers in support of the project sponsor? >> good morning, commissioners, my name is orry bash and ty's brother and in support of ty's project.
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ty suffers from -- as you mentioned a neuromuscular disorder. there is no cure and no interpret and therapy. he likes to spend time in tahoe skiing and today he struggles with even taking his dog on a walk and i'm asking the commission to show some sympathy and approve the project as proposed. >> thank you, other additional speakers?
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>> my name is eric bash and i'm the father of ty bash. i am standing here today, because i'm embarrassed that he had to disclose of the issue of his disability here in the public just to let him build the home that is going to fit his needs and the fact that he needs an elevator and the location of the elevator dictates a lot of the way the building is situated. ty bought the property when he realized that he could not really go up the stairs any longer. and he took into consideration the small cottage in the back and be able to put the addition in the front. it's been a long time since the time he bought this property and this neighbor is really driving him nuts really making everything very
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difficult on him. every time she is coming up with different things and she actually wanted to redesign the whole building the way she likes and doesn't let him design the build ing the way he likes. when he was doing the design of this building and the project was in the rd to make sure that nothing is not according to the requirements it actually came out 100% like it should be. i am standing here today asking
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you to not to let this neighbors to take over his property. letting him develop this addition in the front to accommodate what he needs and that que go in he can go in and live the way he can and utilize the building right. thank you. >> other speakers? seeing none, dr requester you have a two-minute rebuttal. >> one thing mr. bash has indicated michelle's kitchen window won't be seriously impacted by the project and he write "the proposed project will actually improve the light in your kitchen window and you would still be able to look up and see the sky." so that top
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photo that is existing kitchen window and bottom with the project. so really the only way to see the sky is if michelle khryaps up on her counter, sticks her head out the window and rotates it 180 degrees and looks straying up. so that window is going to lose most of it its sun and we accept that. what we are trying to do now is maintain as much light that comes to the rear as possible. project sponsor shadow studies show early morning light won't be changed. the problem is it doesn't get any early morning light. the topography is such that by the time the sun comes over the hill, it's already mid-morning. so there is no early morning sun. also the project has now two large plate glass windows. those were also built without
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permits. in 1910 photo you can see the original patterns. michelle could have filed a compliant with the bottleding department, but all she wants to do is ask as a neighbor the one window that would be kept, could it be changed. i'm running out of time. we do have another idea, mr. bash could keep cannot elevator, a glass breezeway that would connect the front room with the existing cottage. >> thank you. >> your time is up. >> thanks. >> project sponsor, you have a
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two-minute rebuttal. >> members of the planning commission, the problem that i have with the dr sponsor she continuously changes her requests uneventually proposing that i build a project that i will not be able to live in. she is aware of the fact without the elevator, i'm not going to be able to move into that project. she is also aware of the fact that due to the number of stairs at this project, i'm unable to move into it now. the goal is to drag this on and on and on, so i will just be exhausted of my money and walk away. this in my opinion is absolutely disgusting abuse of our system. i ask you to consider the fact that the department is complete support, the fact that it has been through rdt twice. that the zoning administrator claims that under his interpretation there is no problem with the cottage in the back and allow me to construct
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this addition without any changes. so i will be able to move and live in it for a long time. thank you for your consideration. >> thank you, with that the public hearing portion is closed. commissioners? commissioner antonini. >> i had the occasion to visit dr requester about a month ago, i guess. and it's a little hard to really tell. i was able to see where that kitchen window is. it was a rainy day. there was some breaks and it wasn't totally overcast, but i do agree that there is a grade change and there is say fence there. so you can look up and see beyond the project sponsor's house a little bit.
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i have to rely on staff analysis to see if they feel that there is an impact. also i would have to agree with -- check with staff in regards to the zoning situation, which i think the zoning administrator has already said some things, but he can also add this whole question of whether the rear yard can be considered with regards to this? which former zoning administrator passmore felt differently i'm happy to address that now. >> that would be great. why don't we talk about that. >> section 134 require a rear yard for the subject property. that is clear. that is explicit in the code. the construction that is being done is not within the required rear yard. so while this would result in a building that does have quite a bit of lot coverage, if not nearly full-lot coverage, what would
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comply with the requirements of the code. acknowledging this, mr. passmore developed an interpretation by going back to the '80s or '90s and it's actually more restrictive than what the code provides for. it was last revised in march of 2010 by my predecessor, so it has been revised over the years and currently it allows you to count areas that meet the requirements of section 135 for open space. that includes areas that are at-grade and also areas on decks and balconis and that can count towards the area that the interpretation would provide as usable open space. the interpretation does say that the zoning administrator should require open space else wherein where on the lot and doesn't specify where, but should be consistent with that of the adjacent properties.
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i would note that the dr requester has in this case proposed an alternative and based upon my review of their alternative, it would not meet with their own interpretation of this interpretation. because it does not actually provide an additional rear yard. sure it removes the floor and providing additional setbacks, but wouldn't comply with their own interpretation of this code provision. i think things have developed over the years, certainly in the past and today as well, the code seeks to bring builds intoing confirmity with current code requirements which in this case they could if they demolished some or much of the existing building trigger a section 317 requirement and while it may be more confirming with the requirement for the rear yard, they would be potentially loss of a dwelling unit and go through section 31 for that. which did not exist at the time when this interpretation was
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originally drafted. and the interpretation does explicitly state -- when it doesn't comply with the interpretation that the zoning administrator can review that on a case-by-case basis and determine if it's appropriate. so even if it doesn't mean the interpretation, and i believe that based upon the facts here and based upon the amounts of open space that they are providing that they do meet the interpretation. that even if they don't meet the interpretation, there are issues that it wouldn't be maintaining the building wall along ashbury, so there are design concerns there. do you put it as a courtyard in between the two buildings? that is possible. but if it completely separates the two buildings, then you have an issue there, because this is a single-family dwellinging with two structures on lot that doesn't work for a single-family geling. you could potentially have a much larger cort yard, 10x10.
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and that would probably meeting the interpretation that the dr requester has, but again that is not what i saw in the proposal. that was a lot of information there and was hopefully as clear as possible, but in summary w we believe it complies with. >> so mr. sanchez, that for me eliminates the non- complying part and privacy, which we deal with all the time. pell are always going to have windows that look into other windows. but i mean, in terms of the setbacks, if i am reading the plans correctly. setbacks of 4' between the project sponsors and property line on the second and third floor and 5' setback on the
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fourth floor. staff correct me if i'm wrong, there is the whole top floor setback 15' from the front, i believe. and then there is -- isn't there also a light well, matching light well that is fairly? and the 5', that is the length of the light well? >> yes. >> and that light well is barely long as i recall. so typically i'm in a single-family home myself and we're ' from the property line, and the other single-family detached home is 3' from the property line on the other side. so you know, a 6'
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separation is what you have in gracious districts that have completely detached homes. if you have -- i don't know how much the dr questioner is set away from the line so there is quite a separation. for some reason that cottage was built back on the hill and probably built before from the photos and nobody thought about bringing it to the line of all the others. so i guess it comes down -- what it comes down to me for is staff interpretation of the shadow effects in the property owned
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by the dr requester, more specifically her window in the kitchen. but typically we have always said you have to allow a matching light well of at least 3' and the length. and it seems to me this is what is being done. so i will have to hear what the other commissioners have to say, but i'm at a loss where the impact will be aside from shadow. >> it's already impacting the rear yard. >> thank you. >> commissioner moore. >> i have a problem with the rule being interpreted to the detriment of the neighbors this particular case. having a legally non-compliant building is in itself a difficult situation. we have discusses others
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together. on jones, actually a while back and we were very careful of how much changes and expansions we were aloud given the fact it's a illegal nincompliant and the rules that we are using today don't quite apply, but what rules apply in order for it to create an equitable situation? having a house which is already 1748 square feet as a single-family house is not a small home, but to basically use height enlargements by which this house will be added to for another 2169 square feet i think is pushing the rules to the extent. to repeat my point, using the rules to the detriment of neighbors. i was interested in hearing you speak about a separation between the buildings, which resembles luck like a small
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courtyard. we're trying to create an on-grade open space which gives the feeling of separation on the ground floor that resembles some form of interpretation. it's not the front yard, not the rear yard, but somewhere within the configuration of the building and that is what i would be interested in. because i am concerned that people will use this as a precedent to start playing the game, where we'll be increasing buildings in neighborhoods where it's very difficult to do these type of enlargements and use the rules kind of working against us. i believe that is the impact overall is significant. that the idea of common open space is really the idea for which everybody benefits indirectly from each other and having the open space
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requirement explained primarily by a large upper floor deck just doesn't for me meet the meaning ever what "common open space" really means. we're not yet in a place where we're all benefiting from each other's elevated open spaces because they are kind of overlap and next to each other. this is a ground-related single-family building and i would like to find a solution which resembles more of what you are describing and we might want to have you take a lead in a slightly modified interpretation. >> commissioner sugaya. >> yes, i think part of the interpretive language had to do with open space on the property being compatible or similar to the neighborhood. i think that is where i have a problem. because decks are not the kind of open space, i assume, that
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characterizes the rest of the neighborhood as counting towards that open space requirement. also i feel that the very historic -- it's probably not a designated resource or anything, but it has been modified too much over time, but from the historic photo this was one of the first buildings in the whole neighborhood and it was built back from the street. and for me, that kind of characteristic is important. because as the neighborhood filled up, this remained a unique situation. and i don't think that then we can turn around and say that filling up the front takes precedent over some kind of remaining open space requirement. i'm not saying that, i don't think, very well, but in in case, those are my thoughts.
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>> commissioner moore. >> we once had a building, i think it was in the marina somewhere. i have a vague idea about it being like a barbell building where really -- do you remember that building? i think it was on filbert with the need for additional square footage and it was the rear and front of the property, but connected the two was a transparent element for lack of a better word, a courtyard and light well and "light well" is the wrong word here. but it created a certain lightness and transparency for all people that participated in the front and rear expansion on the lot and i would suggest that we find a way to help the applicant with all of things that he needs, with his elevator and the stair issue,
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et cetera, but try to really lighten up the building a little bit in the middle of the property in order to have an interior courtyard of some sort. >> commissioner antonini. >> looking at this exempt, that looks - at , sketch and perhaps i could give it to mr. ionin to put on the screen. the issues of real estate yard coverage is something that the zoning administrator is going to have to interpret, as i said before. that is pretty good, if you could push it a little further to show -- you can see the space between the two. right there. you can see there is a setback on the dr requesters that is fairly generous, look like maybe 3' -- i can't tell -- from the property line. then you see the setback of 4' on
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the lower floors, 2 and 3. and then the 4th floor you see the 5' setback and see how long that light well is. i am trying to interpret this as we do every other case we get. if we had rowhouses which these are almost rowhouses and there are some separations and asked how much do we need between structures? think 3' and 4' and in some places 5' is ample light well. it's still pretty generous. so that is kind of my interpretation of it. i will defer to other commissioners, but that is my interpretation of what the project sponsor is doing what we ask everybody else to do on all the other cases that we have been doing. so i don't know about any other changes.
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i would be interested in hearing what the other commissioners are interested in doing with the middle of that building, but i don't know quite how we're going to do it. but i certainly think that he should be able to keep that fourth floor. but if something has to be done to part of that, that would be up to someone else to craft an idea. >> commissioner hillis. >> maybe i could ask the project sponsor and architect on this concept that people are kicking around -- and i don't know if it's a trade-off between the front roof deck, which i don't think serves that 15' setback, doesn't serve a great purpose for anybody or even the kind of scale, i think across the street. the buildings tend to be fairly tall and some trade-off between the roof deck and more courtyard/light well, whatever you want to