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RDRC Minutes March 13, 2003

RDRC Minutes March 13, 2003


The meeting was called to order at 4:12 p.m. by Chairman Johnson


COMMITTEE MEMBERS PRESENT: Chairman Johnson; Committee Members Blumer, Daybell, and Silber
COMMITTEE MEMBERS ABSENT: Committee Member Coffman
STAFF PRESENT: Associate Planner Eastman and Chief Planner Rosen (Arrived Late)


Minutes for February 13, 2003 were approved, by a vote of 4 to 0.




  • ITEM 1

    A brief description of the project located at 218 N. Yale Av. was provided by Associate Planner Eastman. Mr. Eastman described the project as a second dwelling unit over two 2-car garages behind an existing single-family bungalow, in an R-2P zone. The R-2 zone is a two-unit per lot classification, with P being a preservation overlay. Mr. Eastman generally described the surrounding neighborhood, and stated that the project has previously been reviewed by the RDRC on November 7, 2002 and January 23, 2003. The project has been revised to address Staff and the RDRC's previous comments, and Staff supports the revised proposal based on the submittal being compatible with the unique features of the existing residence's historic character, and the character of the surrounding neighborhood.

    Staff recommends that the RDRC approve the proposed project as revised, subject to the 13 recommended conditions outlined in the staff report.

    The applicant's architect, Don Monteleone, briefly described the proposal. He identified that the applicant is pleased with the revisions that have been made to the project, and would like to request approval. Mr. Monteleone discussed some of the changes made to the project to get it to the existing state, including the addition of the dormer, details to the eaves, window trim, and covered entry. The applicant and property owner, Greg Lambeth, stated that he has recently completed a room addition to the site's existing single-family bungalow, and stated that he is very happy with how the project turned out.

    Committee member Silber stated that the applicant has called out vinyl windows on the plan, but a condition of approval requires the appearance of wood. Staff Planner Eastman stated that the windows may be vinyl, but it is the intent of Staff to require windows on the second unit have the appearance of wood. Typically Staff would ask that the windows have a wood texture, but since the windows on the second unit are far from public view, this seems pointless. Staff will require that the windows maintain a wood "profile", in regard to sill dimensions, window glazing location, mullion widths and depths, trim, etc.

    Chief Planner Rosen entered the room to attend the meeting.

    Committee Member Silber and Chairman Johnson inquired as to whether the applicant had any concerns with the conditions. The applicant stated that he did not. The architect stated that he had a concern with condition number 12, which states that the Engineering Department can require public improvements. Mr. Monteleone was concerned that the condition is very open-ended, and wanted to know what kind of to identify needed improvements on or adjacent to the property as needed to support the improvements are needed. Planner Eastman clarified that the condition is a standard condition. Chief Planner Rosen stated that the condition is a place holder to allow the Engineering Department project, such as repairing cracked sidewalks or installing/removing curb cuts. Mr. Lambeth was concerned that the condition might require him to do improvements down the street. Mr. Rosen and Mr. Eastman assured the project that the intent of the condition was to focus on public improvements just on or in front of his project. The improvements would be identified at which time the applicant submit plans for Building Permit plan check.

    Committee Member Daybell asked if the two houses would be color matched. Mr. Lambeth stated that they would. Mr. Lambeth provided the RDRC with a color board showing the roof material, a beige/salmon building color on stucco, and white window trim on wood. Committee Member Silber asked if the windows would be white. The property owner said they would, and passed out photos of the existing house that he will match. Member Silber asked if the proposed roof material matched the existing house, and asked what color and make the roofing was. Mr. Lambeth stated that the material would ultimately match, as the old part of the existing house is not presently in need of re-roofing. He identified Sentential as the roof material manufacturer.

    Chairman Johnson asked if the applicant will have lights installed under the soffit above the garage doors. Property owner Lambeth clarified that he will have can lights, and that a unit down the street has the same thing.

    There being no further comments from the public, Chairman Johnson closed the public discussion.

    Chairman Johnson stated that he would like to insure that lighting get concealed in the Soffit over the garages. Committee Member Silber agreed.

    Committee Member Blumer stated that he liked the project's proportions, and likes that the details match the existing house.

    Committee Member Silber concurs. He said he would like to see lighting in the soffit, or up-lighting on the wall.

    Committee Member Daybell stated that he thought it was a good project.

    Committee Member Johnson motioned and Silber seconded, to approve the project with a condition for indirect lighting in the soffit above the garage doors. The motion was approved by a vote of 4 to 0.

  • ITEM 2

    Associate Planner Eastman provided a brief description of the project located at 312-314 W. Wilshire Av. Mr. Eastman stated that the applicant is requesting to approve a three-story apartment complex that has four units above six 2-car garages on the ground floor. The site currently contains two single-family residences. Associate Planner Eastman stated that the project has been heard by the RDRC several times before, and that the project dates back to more than a year ago. The proposal was approved by the RDRC previously as a 5 unit complex, subject to revisions, corrections, and final plans coming back to the RDRC to verify revisions. Staff clarified that the applicant is asking the RDRC to revise their previous approval to allow changes that the applicant feels strongly about, and that the project was before the RDRC for review design issues. Changes relevant to the number of units and issues related to code compliance are yet to be finalized by the Director of Development Services. Staff is asking for a determination from the RDRC regarding design issues prior to the project moving forward. Planner Eastman identified the changes in the project, including the one most pertinent to the RDRC's review, which is a request to use stucco and horizontal metal tube railings, rather than wood siding as required by the RDRC.

    Chairman Johnson opened the public meeting and asked the applicant to present his project.

    The property owner applicant, Alex Fischer, provided background regarding the history of the project, explaining that it was a 5-unit project but is now 4 units. He stated that he is asking the RDRC to approve a stucco building rather than siding because siding is very high maintenance, and stucco is more practical. He pointed out that the general design components are similar to the building on the southwest corner of Wilshire and Highland Avenues, including the stucco and metal railings.

    Chairman Johnson pointed out that the plans indicate the addition of a 6 foot wood fence, 3'-0" block wall, protective bollards, or metal pipes. The Chairman asked the applicant which one he was going to use. Mr. Fischer stated that it hadn't yet been determined, and that the notation was added because his neighbor to the west was concerned about a fence on the property line. The Committee determined that it is better not to require the applicant to choose one of the options at this meeting as the condition was really added to appease the neighbor, and she was not present. The RDRC directed the applicant to work with the neighbor to find the best solution.

    Committee Member Silber asked the applicant if he has read the conditions, and if he is in agreement with them. Mr. Fischer said that he had, and that he was in agreement. Member Silber pointed out that one of the conditions is that the applicant provide a trash enclosure, and asked Mr. Fischer if he had considered this condition. Mr. Fisher stated that all of his properties have trash enclosures when needed, and that he will comply with this condition. Member Silber asked where the applicant would provide and enclosure.

    Chief Planner Rosen interjected and stated that the City's contracted waste hauler has typically allowed apartment complexes with 4 or less units to use curbside pick-up rather than a trash bin. Mr. Fischer said that his residence would keep their trash cans in their garages.

    There being no further comments from the public, Chairman Johnson closed the public discussion. Chief Planner Rosen excused himself from the meeting.

    Committee Member Silber pointed out that the long span of the metal railings will cause them to dip (droop) in the middle over time, and he recommends that the applicant place a vertical post between the end pilasters to ensure that the railings stay horizontal. However, Silber stated that this was not a condition of approval; but rather a recommendation to the applicant.

    Member Silber pointed out that the "picture framing" of the rear elevation by use of stucco-overed 2-by-12's is a bit much, and that a simple corner would be better. He feels that there is too much going on with the "stepped stucco". He pointed out that his concern is primarily with the vertical element of the picture framing, and that maybe the horizontal banding might be appropriate. The Committee discussed the framing briefly and agreed that a simpler approach would be better. The applicant agreed that he is willing to make the revisions.

    Member Silber also pointed out that he was concerned with how the landscaping would be done under the building.

    Committee Chairman Johnson stated that he would like to see soffit lighting at the garage doors.

    Committee Member Daybell asked if the landscaping would come back to the RDRC for review. Planner Eastman stated that Staff would not typically have or recommend that the landscaping come back to the RDRC because it will not be seen by the public.

    Member Daybell recalled that there was some discussion at previous meetings regarding the use of stucco as it related to a Spanish style. Staff Planner Eastman stated Member Daybell is correct, and that minutes of previous meetings state that there was discussion of the use of stucco to achieve a Spanish style. Minutes indicate that the Committee previously stated that the Spanish style was very difficult to achieve with a three story building, and therefore the stucco approach wasn't appropriate. Staff clarified that the request to use stucco now is not related to a request to create a Spanish style, as the design presented is not of any particular design "style".

    Committee Member Silber stated that he had concerns with the rear railings on the side elevations, and felt that the "openness" made the stucco end-post appear to float away from the building. He would like to see the side railings on the second floor be replaced with a low solid wall. The Committee agreed that this was a good revision, and the applicant agreed that he was willing to do this.

    Member Silber motioned, and Blumer seconded, to approve the project subject to the condition recommended by Staff and the addition of conditions requiring the applicant to remove the vertical elements of the "picture frame" on the rear elevation; add concealed lighting in the soffits above the garage doors; and that the side railings of the rear balconies on the second floor be changed from metal tubes to a solid stucco wall. The motion was approved by a vote of 4 to 0.


There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 5:05 p.m.