Planning Commission Minutes Dec. 4, 2007



Regular Meeting

Wednesday, December 4, 2007

Council Chambers, Daly City



Chair Kelly called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.


ROLL CALL:         Present:             Smith, Satorre, Kelly, Salamy, and Tallerico


      Staff Present:     Berger, Schott, Mothershead, Van Lonkhuysen, Naughton, and DeFries


APPROVAL OF MINUTES:  Moved by Commissioner Tallerico, seconded by Commissioner Salamy, to approve the minutes of November 7, 2007.  Motion carried 5-0.




10.       Use Permit UP07-5 and Environmental Assessment to construct a new two-unit residential duplex – 320 Woodrow Street


            Michael Van Lonkhuysen, Associate Planner, requested a continuance because a more current property owner authorization was needed.




            Moved by Commissioner Smith, seconded by Commissioner Tallerico, to continue the public hearing to the next regular meeting of January 2, 2008. Motion carried 5-0.


11.              General Plan Amendment GPA07-1, Major Subdivision SUB07-1, Use Permit UP07-3 and Environmental Assessment for new construction of an affordable residential development consisting of 36 condominium units over podium parking – 7555 Mission Street


Staff report presented by:       Jeanne Naughton, Associate Planner


Ms. Naughton presented the request by applicant, Scott Woodman, on behalf of Peninsula Habitat for Humanity for approval of the construction of a new 36-unit condominium development with podium parking.  The site is located on the northeast corner of Mission Street and A Street and is in the BART Station Area Specific Plan. 


The site is .69 acres and is currently occupied by automotive related businesses.  Bastan Motors, a used car dealership, recently gave their notice and have vacated the site and moved to another Mission Street location.  Businesses will be given proper notice about relocation. 


The site is currently designated as Medium Density Residential which allows up to 25 dwelling units per acre and will require a General Plan Amendment to redesignate the property to High Density Residential which allows up to 55 dwelling units per acre.  The existing site is covered almost exclusively with asphalt, with the exception of planter areas along the western property boundary.  The development will add approximately 12,800 square feet of common, landscaped open space.


The proposed project will be designed as three separate three-story buildings, connected by internal pedestrian corridors, constructed above podium parking.  Podium parking is defined as a single level of parking at grade or one half below grade and is considered to be the most efficient form of structured parking.  The overall height of the buildings will be approximately 50 feet. 


The development will consist of 36 affordable condominiums, including two 2-bedroom units and thirty four 3-bedroom units.  Peninsula Habitat for Humanity, an independent affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, builds homes for low-income families in San Mateo County through volunteer and community support.  All aspects of Peninsula Habitat’s building projects including fundraising, site selection, family selection and support, volunteer recruitment, construction and mortgage servicing are coordinated locally. 


All 36 condominium units will have a restricted sale price at a level affordable to Low and Very Low Income persons, or 60% and 50% Area Median Income (AMI), respectively.  Peninsula Habitat for Humanity is exploring opportunities to incorporate green building aspects into the project.  Offering residents transit-oriented, affordable homeownership opportunities in condominiums that have healthier indoor environments and are substantially more energy efficient, means that less of their income will go towards energy and transportation costs, while living in an environment that safeguards their health and well-being. 


Inbound vehicular access to the site is provided from a one-way, single driveway off Mission Street. Outbound traffic utilizes a one-way, single driveway off A Street.  The zoning ordinance allows a 25% reduction in required parking for developments that are intended for the exclusive occupancy of low income persons or families, other than the elderly.  Since two parking spaces are required for each condominium unit, in this case, a 25% reduction would require the project to provide 54 parking spaces.  The applicant is proposing to exceed the Code required parking and provide 57 parking spaces. 


The thirty four 3-bedroom units will range in size from 1,107 to 1,141 square feet with a 42 square foot deck.  The units consist of three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen, laundry facilities, dining and living rooms. 


The Planning Commission is being asked to approve a General Plan Amendment to re-designate the property from Medium Density Residential to High Density Residential, a Major Subdivision for 36 residential condominium units, and a Use Permit for condominium uses.  It is also recommended that the Planning Commission affirm the findings contained in the Initial Study and direct staff to prepare a Negative Declaration for adoption by the City Council.  The project is consistent with the General Plan. 


Commissioner Tallerico expressed concern for the egress on A Street, stating that is was a steep hill with a traffic signal near the exit.  He asked if a traffic study had been done.  Ms. Mothershead responded that a traffic study was not done due to the size of the project.  She said that Colma had traffic counts for the intersection and it was operating at Level of Service B.


Commissioner Tallerico asked if staff was aware of the tank on the property.  Staff replied that they were.  Commissioner Satorre stated that he was in favor of the project, but asked if it could be modified to make it a mixed use project with commercial uses on the first floor.  He felt that would be a better use for a property on Mission Street. 


Speakers:        Mary Boughton, Executive Director, Peninsula Habitat for Humanity


Ms. Boughton said that she was looking forward to seeing this project happen and appreciated the City working with them.  Commissioner Satorre asked her if they could have a coffee shop or other commercial use on the first floor.  Ms. Boughton replied that it would be difficult to accommodate and hard to have enough parking.  She said their focus is on helping people become home owners. She agreed that mixed use is important, but if they included it, the number of families served would decrease.  Commissioner Satorre reiterated that to just build residential on such a commercial site was a lost opportunity for the City.  Ms. Mothershead responded that the site is a designation change from Medium density to High density.  Medium density designation in the BART Area Specific Plan did not call for commercial.  The Redevelopment Agency acquired the site specifically to develop affordable housing.


Commissioner Smith heard that PG&E had said they would provide solar panels for all Habitat projects in San Mateo County and asked if that was part of this project.  Ms. Boughton said it was part of their plan, but there was not enough roof area to do it for all units. 


            Commissioner Tallerico asked if the two letters from concerned neighbors could be addressed by Habitat.  Ms. Boughton replied that they would.  Ms. Naughton said that there will be Conditions of Approval that address the concerns.




            Moved by Commissioner Tallerico, seconded by Commissioner Salamy, to close the public hearing. Motion carried 5-0.


            Moved by Commissioner Salamy, seconded by Commissioner Tallerico, to adopt the findings as outlined in the staff report of December 4, 2007.  Motion carried 5-0.


            Moved by Commissioner Tallerico, seconded by Commissioner Smith, to affirm the Negative Declaration.  Motion carried 5-0.


            Moved by Commissioner Smith, seconded by Commissioner Satorre, to approve General Plan Amendment GPA07-1, Major Subdivision SUB07-1 and Use Permit UP07-3 subject to the Findings and Conditions as amended and outlined in the staff report of December 4, 2007.  Motion carried by a unanimous roll call vote.




Commissioner Satorre congratulated the new Mayor, Carol Klatt and Vice Mayor, Maggie Gomez.


            The meeting was adjourned at 7:25 p.m.


                                                                        Respectfully submitted,



                                                                        Richard Berger

                                                                        Director of Economic and Community Development