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tv   [untitled]    August 14, 2013 8:00pm-8:31pm PDT

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>> good evening, i'm mar tha* gorsky, a resident of 70 crestline, and thank you for this opportunity, i want to briefly say on the original subdivision map that was provided for -- at the july 17th hearing, the building setback lines at every single one of naoez green spaces, there are some there, so this is not new information, also the subdivision, the owner had applied originally to subdivide in 1998, so why all this information now is why he couldn't find it back then and why this information wasn't presented to me seems like they're trying to stall this process. i understand there's a lot of money invested but our group has spent many hours researching to really
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substantiate our claim that all of these green spaces were the conditions for this development, and all of these new ideas with the setback lines, also on the subdivision map, every single one of these green spaces is part of private property there is no public or commonly held -- so, for the subdivision map, when it was approved, it was with the understanding that private owners do own all of these green areas, thank you. >> thank you. is there any other public comment? mr. santos, are you not a paid agent for this project? >> i am. >> so, you can't speak under public comment, you need to speak to the time allotted to the party. any other public comment? >> good evening, i'm john hiko,
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i'm the other owner of 74 crestline. i've lived there since 1985 in one of the apartments there, and i oppose the rehearing. we're against professionals here, they've had four years to do their job and figure out how to get this done and it didn't pass and i don't think they deserve a rehearing on this. thank you. >> thank you. >> any other speakers? okay, seeing none, then commissioners, the matter is submitted. >> madam president, on this new letter issued by the city server, i think we should allow both sides to comment briefly on this letter. >> so, a continuance on the hearing? >> no, i'm asking them -- >> right now?
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>> i'm asking them right now to give us -- >> wasn't that issued today or yesterday? would you prepared to comment on it today? >> [inaudible]. >> okay. are you prepared to comment on that today? >> yes. >> okay. >> thank you, commissioners for allowing me to speak. i am the structural engineer of the project, the first step that we took was a meeting with the city surveyor, bruce stores, which happens to be the individual that wrote the letter that we just received today. when we analyzed the plans, he noticed a line, it's called a building setback line, and he wanted us to make sure that we go back and look through all
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the history and all the paper work on the subdivision to ensure there's no restrictions on the construction of that particular site which as someone commented is owned by my client, green space is owned by my compliant, that was the first step that we took. we have e-mails, communications with mr. stores. after an extensive reengineer, we found no restrictions on our ability to build on that particular wedge, no restrictions at all. in fact, that comment that i'm just making was supported by the july 17th appellant's consultant, the zoning enforcer, he could not find any restrictions of my client to construct a four unit building, no restrictions at all. we took all the legal steps, surveying steps and engineering
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steps to make sure that we can build this building. my client is not a masochist, if he was told he could not build on that site, we would have not pursued this. once we obtained the information from dpw, we brought the design to the planning department and we worked very closely with the planner, mr. tom wang, and i have great respect for mr. wang, he acted with us all throughout the process, he liked the design, he thought it was a very well thought out design. we're preserving a five foot setback between buildings, we're maintaining the stairs in perp taout, at the planning commission, the commissioners were surprised as to why
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planning staff hadn't supported this job. they thought it was a great design. commissioner hillis was not in attendance and i would have spoken to him afterwards, he would have voted for it, we would have had a 6-1 vote, but tonight all we're asking is due process. all we're asking is for us to have the ability to bring all the information on a rehearing, nothing else, you don't have to like the project, but i think my client deserves an opportunity of due process and fairness. >> mr. santos, if this letter was just issued, then your research didn't close the loop with them. >> i consulted with mr. stores, he's going to look at all his archives and look at all the e-mails and communications we had. he was surprised and i reminded him that i had communications
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with him four years ago. i have a great deal of respect with mr. stores, he deals with a lot of surveys and i did contact him as soon as i read the letter. >> thank you. >> mr. bateman? >> just a couple of points, the building setback line and the interpretation given to it yesterday by mr. stores at dpw simply supports what's in the vista subdivision number 1 map, just to give you a little background, after the planning commission decision last november, we found that, if my memory serves, that the planning department could not at that time or had not at that time found the original vista subdivision number 1 map which we presented as one of our
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exhibits last tile, i imagine the same thing happened with dpw and mr. stores in those discussions after how many years it's been, he may not have had benefit of that original subdivision map either that both had the delineation of the setback lines swes the preliminary areas to be created and maintained. we brought that to the planning department as we were preparing for this hearing and waiting for the building permit to be issued. i'm very curious as to when were these covenants that are now brought forward, when were they found, just in the last 10 days or is it four years before that there's been so much work going on, and i think there's been a lot of focus, is there any language in anything that says thou shall not build here, and we conceded in our last
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hearing that there perhaps is not that specific language, however, there is language that says thou shall maintain these green areas, thou shall create and maintain them, putting up a six story building on top of green space is not maintaining it for the rules and the citations and the crepts of the subdivision number 1, and we've also had discussion at the last hearing why the sponsor delayed application for the subdivision until july 15th two days before the hearing. obviously if that chicken had come before this egg, we wouldn't be here today because the whole dpw would have addressed the subdivision as they did yesterday and perhaps there never would have been a building permit application submitted, so a bad decision decision and presenting things now that could have been presented at the last hearing
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does not constitute under your rules a reason for rehearing. thank you. >> mr. bateman, you know, i read through the ccnr's, i didn't study them extensively, but do you recall where they talk about building setback line? >> they don't talk about building setback if you're referring to the covenants. >> yes. >> that's not mentioned, that's part and parcel of the subdivision number 1 map, that instrument. what the covenants do from our read on them is that they support the planning areas that were referenced to be created and maintained on the subdivision map that was approved by the board of supervisors. there are also other parts in those covenants that speak to thou shall not build a fence, a wall, etc., etc., that obstruct
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sunlight and views, they use that nasty word views, so obviously a building has walls. that's my point there, a building has walls. >> okay, thank you. >> it seems like we're between a rock and a hard place. the issue is whether there's new information for our decision, correct? >> i was the one 4-1, so i
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think everybody else can speak their mind. >> i guess i have a question in my mind about new being something that could have been discovered prior or really is sort of new to light. >> the standard is they could not have been presented. could we have the -- >> yeah, i would like that. >> sure, i'll read it, except in extraordinary weiss, the board may grant a hearing question if different or material facts of different circumstances have arisen where such facts and circumstances if known at the time could have affected the outcome of the original hearing, the written request shall state, one, the nature and character of the new fact and circumstance, the names and witnesses and the description that you produce
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and why the evidence was not produced tat original hearing, then it goes on to say, failure to provide due diligence to provide new facts and circumstances should be deemed denial of the new grant or request. >> there clearly is one piece of new evidence which is the letter, but again i believe that would only be valid if it were to -- to cause us to think it would change our decision. >> and supports our original decision, so the only other new piece of evidence are the ccnr's which i did not hear why they were presented to begin with. so, that's where i'm struggling. >> right, me too. >> i'm a little surprised that that wasn't discussed in the
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presentation. >> did we miss that in the argument? i'd like to give you 30 seconds to tell us why that wasn't provided. >> yeah, so when we got this case in our office, one of the first things that we did was ask our client for a title report, and when we got the title report, the ccnr's were not on it, so we called another title company and asked them for another title report and that is where we got the second document that went into the -- and i'm look back at my soc to confirm i'm not speaking out of turn because this was her work. >> okay, but that doesn't address why they weren't presented at the original hearing. >> and that's with reasonable diligent, i mean, so when you purchase a piece of property
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and you do your due diligence, you get a title report and a title insurance policy, you get one, and so if you get one that isn't complete or accurate, you know, that that's really kind of an abnormal situation. >> can you address -- it seems to me that you don't have the knowledge or information to really address why it wasn't present given that you're not retained until after -- do you have the answer to that and you're creating an argument. >> the client report did not have all the information we included in our brief. we after getting the title report from them -- >> you were -- you did represent them at the last hearing? >> i did not, but we were newly hired after your last hearing. >> so, you don't have any basis to tell us why it was not included at the last hearing?
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>> because they didn't have it in the title report that he had at the time, and so they -- after they hired us, we ordered a second title report and got that information independent of our client. >> okay, thank you. >> okay, but one more question, and can you explain to me one more time how you think the ccnr's support your position now? >> yes, so there is a reference to planting areas in the ccnr's, but it is really the discussion of the planted areas are about duties of the association to provide maintenance and, you know, and basically to bear the financial burden of doing certain things in the planted areas. there is no restriction that says these areas shall in perp
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tao*ut remain planted areas, there is every indication that when the ccnr's were drafted, that it was, you know, they knew how to create easements, there are easements in the ccnr's for access, those easements are forever basically. they didn't establish open space or planting easements, they provided for planting areas to be maintained by an association. that association ceased to exist in 1982. i don't see how a maintenance burden or a maintenance duty that was assigned to an association now becomes a restriction on my client's ability to build on those planted areas always and forever. i don't see that in the ccnr's. >> okay, and then can you address the letter from today,
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how does that affect -- apart from the ccnr's, how does that affect your ability to build? >> it's obviously a problem and it is something that came to us again today which is contrary to prior discussions that mr. santos and others had with bruce stores at dpw, and to me, it highlights the need for a decision to be put off because we got the letter today, we got it without any communication in advance from dpw, it contradicts what we've heard before, so we would like to understand how this decision was arrived at, and you know, and preserve the opportunity to proceed with a project if dpw eventually determines that this
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letter was issued inner ror. >> your remedy is to appeal to the board of supervisors, isn't it? >> yes, certainly, but the problem is that if the building permit is finally denied while the decision at dpw is pending, we have to go through the building permit process all over again, and so you know, part of the benefit of granting a request for a rehearing here would be that it would give us time to work with dpw and/or the board of supervisors to get a final answer on the subdivision issue and whether the intent of this 1962 subdivision map was to create a permanent no-build area, and if that determination is in our favor, we can come back and argue the case to you on the
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merits about the permit without having to redo the whole process. >> okay. >> and i think we have an ability to decide this putting aside the letter from the surveyor, the city surveyor. >> we do. we have one other alternative which is to continue this. >> i was thinking the same thing, although that i was possibly am still against the project, i think that this new information, if we continue, this might be mute just because the -- because of the subdivision. >> i would state if this letter is not overturned, then the issue is mute. >> right. >> and we allow normal every-day people to make mistakes, i also belief that
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developers with paid guns can still make mistakes as well. >> i would support a continuance. >> do we have a motion? >> continue it to the call of the chair or how do you want to -- >> i think we have to do it to that point, instead of having everybody put it on a calendar and it gets continued again. >> yeah. >> i'm gaining to move to continue this case to the call of the chair, pending the resolution of the -- this letter and any other appeal to the board of supervisors on the surveyor's findings. >> we have a motion then from commissioner fung to continue
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this matter to the call of chair, the board's indefinite calendar, and that's to await the outcome of the decision by the dpw and any possible appeals at the board of supervisors. on that motion to continue to the indefinite calendar, president hwang? >> aye. er >> commissioner hur had dough ?o >> aye. er >> vice-president has rus? >> aye. >> commissioner honda? >> aye. >> that is 5-0. >> i need a five minute break. (meeting is in recess).
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>> welcome back to the august 14, 2013 meeting. we are calling item number 6, meghan blake versus zoning administrator, this is on at 225 clipper street. this is appealing the denial on june 14, 2013 of the front set setback and screening of off street parking variances. this is v -- variance case 2012 .1328v. >> my name is ian murray, i'm an architect, this is the subject property. the property here, it has no
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garage. there are about 10 properties like this in a row, all of them have, theirs does not, they were seeking for me to put in a garage. >> can you speak in the microphone. >> you can see the front door is [inaudible] the ground floor is four foot above the sidewalk, so i did a quick sketch of it and determined that the best way to do it would be to asymmetrically put the garage there and, i would preserve the staircase that's in place now. i did a quick sketch of that and took it to the planning department so see how they would respond to this particular approach. you can see this is the top part that i filled out on the ground floor. this represents the garage door. the stair remains in the same position right there.
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they flatly said they would not accept this, that this would be detrimental to historic fabric of the house, so i then went back and said, okay, if you don't want me to destroy the historic fabric of the house, how about i apply for a variance to put in a driveway, ie, a parking pad, they said you would have to apply for a variance, i proposed a concept, this is very difficult to read, a concept where this parking pad is here, you can barely see the car, and the staircase remain ins the same position, and we did a planting plan as well. i did -- i prepared a sketch for what that would look like and submitted that with the variance package. this is what -- this is terrible, that's useless. so, i submitted the package for
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review and on all five findings, i was denied, they sa criteria, that i did not have exceptional or extraordinary circumstances, that trying to meet the try cao*i tier ya by putting in the garage directly in the bay gayer which is where the planning department would allow me to put it would not allow me to make the staircase work, so finding 1 and 2, they denied me that i had any extraordinary circumstances that would create practical hardship, finding 3, [inaudible], i think it is something that you are being denied of when you look at who has a driveway, who has a garage, who has a parking pad, who has a driveway, it's all over and in my packet, i gave under exhibits c images of the pattern of use in the neighborhood and without exception, people are parking in their driveways in the front yard setback which is against
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the planning zone regulation. so, i also included in the packet an exhibit e which is a case study that was granted by larry badner, not a historical property and i included the photographs of that in my documentation, i canvassed the neighborhood and i said would you be opposed to this, without exception, they signed and because i have the sixties, they're not here tonight, they said yes, do what you want with your property. it was also cited in here that this would be detrimental to a neighborhood because i would be removing an on-site parking space. by that argument, if i was allowed to put a garage, i would still be removing an on-site parking space, so that is really not an argument at all and then i included images from around the city blocks around the property detr