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Seal of the City and County of San Francisco
City and County of San Francisco
May 4, 2006

SAN FRANCISCO

PLANNING COMMISSION

Meeting Minutes

Commission Chambers - Room 400

City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place

Thursday, March 23, 2006

1:30 PM

Regular Meeting

COMMISSIONERS PRESENT: Sue Lee; Michael Antonini; Shelley Bradford-Bell; Kevin Hughes; William Lee; Christina Olague

COMMISSIONERS ABSENT: Dwight Alexander

THE MEETING WAS CALLED TO ORDER BY PRESIDENT SUE LEE AT 1:41 P.M.

STAFF IN ATTENDANCE: Dean Macris – Director of Planning; Larry Badiner – Zoning Administrator; Dan Sider; Jonathan Purvis; Tom Wang; Charles Rivasplata; Teresa Ojeda; Adam Light; Linda Avery – Commission Secretary

  • CONSIDERATION OF ITEMS PROPOSED FOR CONTINUANCE

The Commission will consider a request for continuance to a later date. The Commission may choose to continue the item to the date proposed below, to continue the item to another date, or to hear the item on this calendar.

1. 2002.1263U (J. SWITZKY: (415) 575-6815)

333 Fremont Street - Motion to Approve In-Kind Agreement to Satisfy Rincon Hill Community Infrastructure Impact Fee Requirement per Section 318.3(e). The Planning Commission approved a project at 333 Fremont Street on June 16, 2005, that includes approximately 88 dwelling units. Planning Code Section 318.3(b)(i) requires payment of $11.00 per net occupiable square foot of residential development for the Rincon Hill Community Infrastructure Fund prior to issuance of site permit. The project would require a payment of approximately $800,000. The project sponsor has entered into an In-Kind Agreement with the City, to the satisfaction of the Planning Department and City Attorney, to provide physical public improvements, equal to a portion of the value owed by the sponsor, and described in the Planning Code 318.6 and in the Rincon Hill Plan. The Sponsor will pay the balance of the fee obligation.

Preliminary Recommendation: Approval

(Continued from Regular Meeting of March 9, 2006)

(Proposed for Continuance to April 20, 2006)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Continued as proposed

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

2. 2004.0892EKC (K. AMDUR: (415) 558-6351)

1844 MARKET STREET - north side of Market Street on a through lot that also fronts Waller Street, between Laguna and Octavia Streets, Lot 016 in Assessor's Block 0871 - Adoption of environmental findings related to the adoption of the Mitigated Negative Declaration and Request for Conditional Use authorization under Planning Code Section 303 to allow development on a lot larger than 10,000 square feet, and under Planning Code Section 304 for a Planned Unit Development ( PUD ) to allow a greater density than would otherwise be allowed in the NC-3 district and to allow modifications to the following Code requirements including rear yard setback, bulk, measurement of building height, projection of bay windows, dwelling unit exposure, loading and off-street parking. The project would demolish the existing 2-story commercial building on the site and construct an eight-story mixed-use building with approximately 5,500 square feet of ground floor retail and commercial space, about 113 residential dwelling units, and up to 85 off-street parking spaces, on the subject property, which is in an NC-3 Zoning District and an 80-A Height and Bulk District. The subject site also lies within the Market and Octavia Neighborhood Plan (MOP) area.

Preliminary Recommendation: Approval with conditions

(Proposed for Continuance to April 20, 2006)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Continued as proposed

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

3. 2006.0093ET (E. FORBES: (415) 558-6417)

RELOCATION OF GENERAL ADVERTISING SIGNS - Board File No. 052021 - Amendments relating to the relocation of general advertising signs Ordinance introduced by Supervisor Peskin amending sections of the Administrative and Planning Codes in order to establish procedures, criteria, fees, and other requirements relating to the relocation of general advertising signs.

(Proposed for Continuance to April 6, 2006)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Continued as proposed

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

4a. 2004.0784D (D. SIROIS: (415) 558-6313)

1675 48th Avenue - west side, between Lawton & Moraga, Lot 018, Assessor's Block 1895 - Mandatory Discretionary Review under the Planning Commission's policy requiring review of housing demolition, of Demolition Permit Application 2004.12.16.1606, to demolish an existing single-family dwelling in an RH-2 (Residential, Two-Family) District and in a 40-X Height and Bulk District.

Preliminary Recommendation: Do not take Discretionary Review and approve the Demolition Permit.

(Proposed for Continuance to April 13, 2006)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Continued as proposed

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

4b. 2004.0785D (D.SIROIS: (415) 558-6313)

1675 48th Avenue - west side, between Lawton & Moraga, Lot 018, Assessor's Block 1895 - Mandatory Discretionary Review under the Planning Commission's policy requiring review of new residential buildings in association with residential demolition, of Building Permit Application No. 2004.12.161608, proposing to construct a three-story, two unit residential building with two off-street parking in an RH-2 (Residential, Two-Family) District and in a 40-X Height and Bulk District.

Preliminary Recommendation: Take Discretionary Review and approve the New Construction Permit with modifications.

(Proposed for Continuance to April 13, 2006)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Continued as proposed

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

5. 2005.0686C (D. DIBARTOLO: (415) 558-6291)

631 O'FARRELL STREET - south side between Hyde and Leavenworth Streets; Lot 001 through 198 in Assessor's Block 0322A - Request for Conditional Use authorization pursuant to Section 209.6(b) of the Planning Code to install and operate a wireless telecommunication facility for T-Mobile within the RC-4 (North of Market Residential Special Use District) and an 80-T Height and Bulk district, upon the roof of the approximately 211 foot high structure that contains 184 condominium dwelling units over ground story commercial space. As per the City and County of San Francisco's Wireless Telecommunication Services (WTS) Facilities Siting Guidelines, the proposal is a Preferred Location Preference 2, as it is the site of previously approved antenna installations.

(Continued from Regular Meeting of February 9, 2006)

(Proposed for Indefinite Continuance)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Continued as proposed

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

B. COMMISSIONERS' QUESTIONS AND MATTERS

6. Consideration of Adoption:

  • Draft Minutes of Regular Meeting of October 27, 2005.

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Approved

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

  • Draft Minutes of Regular Meeting of December 1, 2005.

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Without hearing, continued to 4/6/06

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

7. Commission Comments/Questions

Commissioner Antonini

  • A question for the City Attorney: When the area EIR for Eastern Neighborhood is approved, would we not assume that projects that would accommodate it or would be in compliance with that EIR, would that not be challengeable in terms of cumulative effect of PDR loss?
  • If I'm understanding what we're doing correctly in this EIR and in the Eastern Neighborhoods legislation in general, we're figuring out what portion of the Eastern Neighborhoods should remain PDR, what portion should be housing, and what should be mixed-use.
  • So if a project were to be in an area that is dictated for housing, for example, then one would assume it would conform.
  • The second part of my question is in reviewing state law and the Housing Element; I don't see any reference that dictates to a quota of types of housing in terms of income level.
  • There are suggestions. There are references to the need to address the housing needs of all income levels, but I don't see any specificity or quotas and I wanted to make that clear.
  • The only statutory thing I see is the levels of below market-rate housing that must be built as per the Leno Legislation that is currently before us.

Deputy City Attorney Kate Stacy responded

  • Once an EIR is prepared and it's prepared for an area that includes all of the projects–assuming that the program EIR does address all the cumulative impacts and includes the projects in that analysis–those subsequent projects should be able to rely on the analysis in the program EIR.
  • Any number of options could be undertaken for each project.
  • One is that the project could prepare an addendum to the program EIR explaining how all of the environmental impacts are already covered by the program EIR. A project may change or may bring up other issues, which then the Planning Department would have to address.
  • Hopefully the program EIR for Eastern Neighborhoods would include all those cumulative issues and would take into consideration all of the pending projects and applications. That should provide a framework for subsequent environmental review once that program EIR is completed.
  • On your second question, on these according to state law, I am not aware of specific numerical quotas. Dean Macris or Larry Badiner may have further information on that, but I'm happy to look into it and get back to you on that question.

Commissioner Bill Lee

  • Asked the City Attorney's Office to provide us with written guidance regarding the CEQA and the nexus to socio economic issues.
  • I'm trying to find out if there is any case law that requires when we do approve an EIR, that we have to take into consideration socioeconomic impacts. Under Conditional Use approvals we do take some semblance of economic impacts.
  • What I'm asking you to do is sort of give us some guidance with case law to say are we within our rights to make the decision or are we not within our rights. Or do we have some sort of framework when we make the final decision on Eastern Neighborhoods?
  • I'd like to have that in writing to all commissioners.
  • [He passed out a copy to all commissioners of the San Francisco Task Force on the Arts Findings and Recommendations.]

Commissioner Olague

  • A few weeks ago I requested a hearing on the state of the Arts in the Eastern Neighborhoods because I'm wondering if we're working towards that or not.
  • I think what raised it really was the Clay Studio and some of the issues that were brought to our attention as a result of that.
  • I wanted to have maybe a number of small theater spaces in the Eastern Neighborhoods, a number of other types of jobs that fall under the PDR category and the arts–that sort of thing.
  • I believe that the Arts Commission would have that information. That's why I requested maybe someone from the Arts Commission come before us to address those issues.
  • I'm sort of concerned about the issue of artists and displacement of artists–displacement of jobs as we move forward in the rezoning of the Eastern Neighborhoods.

Director Dean Macris responded

  • Commissioner we were hoping to respond to your questions and queries and provide you with information on that the next time we had the Eastern Neighborhoods permanent controls or plan. There will be several hearings before you. Are you requesting us to hold a special occasion for just the arts issue? We were hoping to combine that with all the other information that relates to other land uses.

Commissioner Olague

  • I want to get an overall sense of what is going on in the arts in the city over all also. In relationship in part to the jobs question and what types of jobs currently fall into that category and that sort of thing.
  • Maybe someone like Deborah Walker is pretty knowledgeable. She could come out. Someone from the Arts Commission. I'm thinking more of smaller artists. People who maybe teach ceramics, ceramic studios, painting, small galleries, theaters, individual artists who paint. I just want to get a sense of what types of jobs are in that, a sense of the arts basically.

Commission Secretary Avery

  • You often ask for hearings for various subjects.
  • The Commission's policy has always been that if the Chair does not direct me, then there needs to be a consensus of the commission [to schedule those hearings].
  • Your calendars are such that if everything you ask for is individually done, you will not be able to take action or hear the items that are before you.
  • I believe you have the right to ask.
  • But I also need to know whether or not I should continue to follow your policy, or whether or not I should have staff schedule everything you ask for individually.
  • I really need at some point for the Chair to calendar this so I can get some clarity on how you want me to proceed.

President Sue Lee

  • I think we should schedule an item to discuss all these hearings.

Commissioner Bill Lee

  • I want to follow up on Commissioner Olague's request.
  • Under the Master Plan there is an Arts Element and I think it's time to have a hearing regarding the Arts situation as tied to PDR in the Eastern Neighborhoods.
  • Given the Arts Task Force has brought out some controversy with their report, we have to address it anyway in the Master Plan.
  • I would like to have this hearing as soon as we can schedule it because this issue ties with PDR. It ties with the Arts Element and it seems to be on the forefront of many of the people in San Francisco.
  • I'd like to share Christina Olague's request to have the hearing as soon as we can.

C. DIRECTOR'S REPORT

8. Director's Announcements

None

  1. Review of Past Week's Events at the Board of Supervisors and Board of Appeals

Board of Supervisors – reported by Dan Sider of Department staff

  • The Haight Street Alcohol Restricted Use Subdistrict. Modifications to this district by Supervisor Mirkarimi a number of months ago were viewed favorably by this commission. It has been reviewed by the Land Use Committee and was forwarded to the full Board this last Wednesday without recommendation. We will see that at the Full Board in the coming weeks.
  • · C-3 Parking. On Tuesday, the Board did consider a possible override of the Mayor's veto. That override failed 7 to 4. Supervisors Alioto-pier, Dufty, Elsbernd and Ma voted against the override. There is an introduction of a new piece of compromise C-3 Parking legislation by supervisor Peskin. Our initial analysis of this piece of legislation shows a couple of key differences that really draw on the Mayor's veto letter weeks ago. One is that the new legislation would allow [property] that had existing surface parking lots in the C-3 area to provide up to three stories of above-grade parking. The second is a moderation of the restriction that would be placed on curb cuts through the downtown area. This item as a new piece of legislation will be referred to this body and you will have a chance to weigh in on it and transmit it back to the Board for their consideration.
  • · In response to Commissioner Antonini's question/comment of his particular interest in the level at which nonaccessible parking would take place, or if that legislation even speaks to that threshold–Mr. Sider answered that the preliminary review indicates that the core, the .75 ratio that was in the original piece of legislation was carried forward. There have been a number of adjustments, but at this point we're just beginning to get into the legislation.

Board of Appeals – reported by Zoning Administrator Badiner

  • 1960 and 1980-1998 Golden Gate Avenue and 800 Lyon. You held an informational hearing. I drafted a letter that you should find a copy of in either your packets or your correspondence because I cc'd the commission on it. I urged the Board of Appeals to overturn this permit because the permit had a number of discrepancies. At both the request of the appellant and the project sponsor, the Board of Appeals overturned or revoked that permit. I think there was general agreement, and I actually think the project sponsor is open to these ideas. From what I can gather, they were saying one of the reasons they were seeking to eliminate the ground floor use is they understood to legalize it would cause them to have four floors of occupancy. Then they would have to sprinkler and seismic the building. Not sure if this is true or not, but I was told they said that if they are not legalizing–because it is already legal–and they are not adding a floor of occupancy, that's great because we can have that occupancy and not go through all that expense. They'll have DBI confirm that, but it may end up as something everybody is real happy about.
  • If you recall a case before you that had a series of DR's at 450 Frederick. At the last minute it was withdrawn because the neighborhood had reached an agreement that the project sponsor would seek a variance to slide the building back into the rear yard. This would protect the light and air of the adjacent property and everybody seemed to be happy. Yesterday it was on the Consent Calendar at my monthly Variance Hearing and someone from the other side of the block came out saying they represented the Haight/Ashbury Neighborhood Council. Somebody else said they opposed the granting of this variance because they thought it would impact them. Upon my review, I did not feel that it would particularly impact this person and I did grant the variance. I suspect there may be an appeal of that.
  • Commissioner Bradford-Bell stated that there was not a copy of the letter in either the Commission file or in our packets and I was just hoping I could get a copy. Zoning Administrator Badiner said that he would make sure she gets a copy.

D. GENERAL PUBLIC COMMENT – 15 MINUTES

At this time, members of the public may address the Commission on items of interest to the public that are within the subject matter jurisdiction of the Commission except agenda items. With respect to agenda items, your opportunity to address the Commission will be afforded when the item is reached in the meeting. Each member of the public may address the Commission for up to three minutes.

SPEAKERS:

Joe O'Donaghue – Residential Builders

  1. Regarding Golden Gate and Lyon – On behalf of the tenants at Golden Gate, they want to express their deep and sincere thanks to the commissioners because it was this commission that stopped an eviction progress from going ahead.
  2. There was a loophole in the Bureau of Inspection.
  3. We've been trying to correct it the last two and a half years, but to no avail.
  4. I want to thank the Zoning Director and also the Planning Director because they listened to the comments that were made and it was that help that actually prevailed.
  5. What we stated when we first brought this case to your attention was validated last night.
  6. Again, they express their sincere thanks.

E. REGULAR CALENDAR

10. 2006.0046D (J. PURVIS: (415) 558-6354)

137 PORTER STREET - east side south of Benton Avenue; Lot 018 in Assessor's Block 5826 - Request for Discretionary Review of Building Permit Application No. 2005.09.14.2861 proposing the construction of a three-story, two-family dwelling in an RH-2 (Residential, House, Two-Family) Use District, and a 40-X Height and Bulk District and within the Bernal Heights Special Use District.

Preliminary Recommendation: Take Discretionary Review and approve the project as revised.

Preliminary Recommendation: Do not take Discretionary Review and approve the permit.

(continued from Regular Meeting of March 16, 2006)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Without hearing, continued to April 13, 2006

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

11a. 2006.0214D (T. WANG: (415) 558-6335)

145 EDINBURGH STREET- southeast side between Avalon and Peru Avenues; Lot 035 in Assessor's Block 5957 - Mandatory Discretionary Review, under Planning Commission's policy requiring review of residential demolition, of Demolition Permit Application No. 2005.05.20.2966, proposing to demolish a single-family dwelling in an RH-1 (Residential, House, One-Family) District and a 40-X Height and Bulk District.

Preliminary Recommendation: Do not take Discretionary Review and approve the demolition permit.

SPEAKERS:

Claire

  1. I'm the one who filed the discretionary review.
  2. There have been some other developments behind our properties that have been rather significant.
  3. We feel that we will still lose a bit of light because the building that is being proposed will sort of overwhelm my property both in the front and the rear.
  4. Since we actually managed to get his signature just before the meeting on our agreement, we are willing to withdraw the DR and to support the project and hope that what we will get will be something that will beautify our neighborhood and add to the neighborhood.
  5. While this cottage has been sort of cute – it was built after 1906, and I met the daughter of the original owner – we'd like to see a wonderful piece of property there with good new neighbors. That would be an improvement to the neighborhood because it's vacant.

Anita

  1. I live on the north side of the building in question
  2. I'm looking forward to a new piece of property.
  3. It has taken us a long time to get here to negotiate a contract, but now that we have it I feel that something beautiful will be put in. It's a disgrace as it is now.
  4. I'm looking forward to moving on.

ACTION: Did not take discretionary review and approved demolition.

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

11b. 2005.0998DD (T. WANG: (415) 558-6335)

145 EDINBURG STREET- southeast side between Avalon and Peru Avenues; Lot 035 in Assessor's Block 5957 - Neighbor-Initiated Discretionary Review and Mandatory Discretionary Review, under Planning Commission's policy requiring review of the replacement structure in association with residential demolition, of Building Permit Application No. 2005.05.20.2973, proposing to construct a two-story over garage, single-family dwelling in an RH-1 (Residential, House, One-Family) District and a 40-X Height and Bulk District.

Preliminary Recommendation: Do not take Discretionary Review and approve the new building permit.

SPEAKERS: Same as those listed for item 11a

ACTION: Prior to this hearing, the neighbor-initiated discretionary review was withdrawn

ACTION: Did not take discretionary review and approved proposal for new building

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

12. 2006.0319D (T. WANG: (415) 558-6335)

519 KIRKHAM STREET- south side between 9th and 10th Avenues; Lot 044 in Assessor's Block 1855 - Request for Discretionary Review of Building Permit Application No. 2005.11.15.8145, proposing to construct two levels of decks at the rear of the existing two-story over garage, two-family dwelling in an RH-2 (Residential, House, Two-Family) District and a 40-X Height and Bulk District.

Preliminary Recommendation: Do not take Discretionary Review and approve the project as submitted.

SPEAKERS:

May Chan – DR Requestor

  1. I'm the owner of 505 to 507 Kirkham Street
  2. I'm not here to stop or delay the project
  3. I just want to make sure that my rights are respected.
  4. Through this DR, I request to have the deck plan reversed.
  5. If that is not possible, please provide at least the same setback on my side to minimize the impact to my right to privacy, light and air.
  6. I believe either option would provide my neighbor a good size deck that is functional for them to enjoy, while at the same time it would not cause additional impact or burden to other neighbors.

Marvin Marquez

  1. I'm here to support Ms. Chan
  2. As you can see on the slide, it does invade her privacy.
  3. If I lived there, I wouldn't want to invasion myself.

Timothy Burke

  1. I'm a friend of the Chan Family.
  2. I assisted with the installation of the patio in the rear of their building.
  3. We specifically left out two areas where we have identified three to four different trees to plant to provide additional privacy from the building to the south of the Chans'.
  4. The primary concern for the Chans' is privacy.

Kay

  1. I'm here to support Ms. Chan

Mai Chan, May's sister

  1. I also live in the building
  2. Please don't let anyone look in my building.
  3. My privacy is important
  4. I also don't want to lose any sunlight and air.
  5. Please approve the project with modification.

Henry Ho

  1. I'm here to speak on behalf of May's concern.
  2. This is not only a privacy concern, but a security concern too.
  3. Please reconsider this and maybe have some sort of modification so that would not become a concern in the future.

Andy Morell – Project Architect

  1. Showed a diagram of the proposed deck with dimensions and its relation to the DR requestor's property.
  2. Assures that from the proposed deck, you cannot see into that adjacent [DR requestor's] window.
  3. He believes the privacy issue is a moot point.
  4. In regard to light: Our deck is only projecting out two feet ten inches past the DR requestor's property. It is an open-rail deck so the light will be allowed to filter through and there will be minimal if any shadow cast on the DR requestor's property.
  5. The issue regarding security: There is about a four and a half foot space between my client's property and the DR requestor's property. It is virtually impossible for anyone to reach over and gain access to the DR requestor's property.
  6. With these items in response, I believe that we should be allowed to build the deck.

Simon Spark

  1. I'm the General Contractor for Mary
  2. This project is well within the Residential Guidelines of the neighborhood

Mary Sherri – Project Owner

- My family has lived in San Francisco 12 years at Kirkham Street.

- We have never been in trouble with the law.

- I don't think I'm going to be spider man and climb on someone's building.

- Land is precious in San Francisco. Houses are built right up next to each other.

- We're pretty lucky we have a four-foot separation between our houses.

- In terms of light and air: When Ms. Chan built her big three-story house, she used every inch that's buildable on her property. Maybe she should have thought about air and light in the beginning.

- I'd like you to know that our building is designed to be built for light and air for my family so we can enjoy our backyard also.

ACTION: Did not take discretionary review and approved as submitted

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, and S. Lee

NAYES: W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

13. 2006.0381U (C. RIVASPLATA: (415) 558-6255)

TRANSPORTATION MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION OF SAN FRANCISCO (TMASF): 2003-2005 PROGRAM SUMMARY AND FIVE-YEAR WORK PLAN - Consideration of a Resolution approving staff findings that the TMASF 2003-2005 Program Summary and 2006-2011 Work Plan are in compliance with City requirements, and accepting the TMASF Work Plan for the 2006-2011 program period. The TMASF is a non-profit organization representing downtown office building managers with transportation management requirements as conditions of permit approval. The TMASF seeks the Commission's endorsement of its work, as described in Resolution 16540 of March 2003.

Preliminary Recommendation: Adopt a resolution endorsing the 2006-201l Work Plan.

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Approved endorsement of the 2006-2011 Work Plan

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

RESOLUTION: 17210

14. 2006.0145ET (T. OJEDA: (415) 558-6251)

Inclusionary Affordable Housing Program- Consideration of an ordinance initiated by SupervisorSophie Maxwell on January 24, 2006 which would amend Planning Code Sections 315.2, 315.3, 315.4, 315.5, 315.6, and 315.8 to revise the Inclusionary Affordable Housing Program by: 1) amending methods of marketing the affordable units; 2) allowing developers, under certain conditions, to use of tax-exempt bonds in meeting their inclusionary housing requirements; 3) requiring that off-site units are located within one mile of the principal project and must be provided as rental housing for the life of the project, or as ownership housing affordable at 80% of area median income; 4) requiring disclosure of preferred alternative to on-site housing before receiving project approvals and this preferred alternative will be a condition of approval; 5) evaluating and revising separate monitoring systems with the goal of establishing a single monitoring system for all inclusionary affordable housing units located in San Francisco; 6) requiring annual adjustment of the in-lieu fee; 7) requiring the completion of the affordable housing impact study no later than July 1, 2006 and the establishment of a Technical Advisory Committee; and 8) applying legislated changes to the inclusionary affordable housing program to all development projects that have not received a building permit at the effective date of this ordinance; and make environmental findings and findings of consistency with the priority policies of Planning Code Section 101.1 and the General Plan.

Preliminary Recommendation: Pending.

SPEAKERS:

Doug Schumaker – Mayor's Office of Housing

  1. Many of the items within this ordinance were brought to our attention some months ago.
  2. We've been able to take many of the very good ideas in there and already start to institutionalize them. We're permitted to do some of them now. Putting them in the ordinance will institutionalize it down the line.
  3. We would agree with staff that given the fact that the Planning Commission is paying for them and Board of Supervisors requested this larger study of the inclusionary housing issues really relate to them being deferred until that study is complete.
  4. We are hoping to come back in early July to talk to the Commission and the Board of Supervisors about that.
  5. The consultant has been engaged. We think we have a good process and would ask that you defer judgment on those items until we can come back.
  6. Lastly, on the issue of wait-lists, I think what we have here is an identification of a very difficult issue on what to do about the resale of units to make sure that we have truly good government and fairness in place when we have resale of inclusionary units.
  7. I think the idea of retaining a wait-list is something we'd like to study in more depth.
  8. There are so many people involved that need housing and they tend to get stale very quickly.
  9. We would like to figure out what the best way to kind of meet the goals of the proposal from Supervisor Maxwell's legislation, but we don't feel comfortable moving forward with it as it is expressed today.
  10. We are supportive of the staff recommendation. There are some wonderful ideas here. Many of them we have already incorporated and would ask that you hold off on the ones that really are the subject of the study.

Bill – Sunrise Senior Living

  1. Sunrise's mission is to serve seniors.
  2. They've been in business for 25 years and they've done very well.
  3. We've wanted to be in San Francisco for some time, but the barriers to entry are pretty significant.
  4. We have a new product – a property on Van Ness that we are starting through the Planning process.
  5. We've been in the pipeline for maybe 18 months.
  6. We've done our site submittal permit process.
  7. When you do a feasibility for a project and you pay top dollar for the property, you figure the affordability and all that as far as resale.
  8. We added the 12% figured into it.
  9. Our project is only 62 units. We're smaller. To share that hit for an increase at this stage, really, it compromises the project.
  10. We'd like some type of grandfathering or something that would give us a little bit of leeway instead of having to make it retroactive for those who don't have a building permit because we've done everything on our side to move it through the process.

Sarah Schindler – Morrison & Forester

  1. Generally we agree with the staff recommendation
  2. We do have a problem with the grandfathering element.
  3. Currently Section 315.3 would not fix the inclusionary requirements to which a project is subject until the project has received a site or building permit.
  4. The staff report recognizes that fixing the inclusionary requirements at the date of issuing a building permit would be inequitable and instead has recommended the amendment to the inclusionary housing requirements would apply to projects until they receive Planning Commission approval.
  5. An amendment should apply to projects while they're pending the Planning Commission approval.
  6. However, even if staff's proposal is incorporated into section 315.3, it would still impose a great hardship on project sponsors by eliminating any certainty that these sponsors would have when they're negotiating their land purchases.
  7. The inclusionary housing requirements have a big impact on land value on how much a project sponsor can afford to pay for a piece of land.
  8. The number and subsidy level, below market-rate units that must be included is a key piece of information the sponsor needs before purchasing the land.
  9.  Without knowing what percentage must be constructed below market-rate will affect the subsidy of the units until after entitlement.
  10. Because Planning Commission approval for larger projects is not typically received until two years after a land purchase agreement has been executed. Supervisor Maxwell's amendment even with staff's proposed change would require project sponsors to purchase land without having a solid idea of how much they can feasibly pay for that land.
  11. A more equitable solution would be to fix the provision of the inclusionary ordinance that would apply to a project sponsor on the date of filing of the project sponsor's first application for the project.
  12. The requirements would follow the project through its entitlement because the first application typically occurs after a land deal is finalized.
  13. Also, the Zoning Administrator and the Board of Supervisors agree there needs to be an exception within the inclusionary housing ordinance to deal with certain special care facilities such as residential care facilities for seniors with dementia.
  14. Two possible solutions is that the definition of rent should not include charges related to non-housing services including food services, medical care, personal assistance in these special care facilities.
  15. Another would be that the residential inclusionary housing affordable program should not regulate these special care facilities.

Robert McCarthy – McCarthy and Schwartz

  1. Ditto to the comments of Ms. Schindler.
  2. I too agree that the administrative issues are best served by having staff and the Mayor's office of Housing work those out.
  3. We support those recommendations.
  4. In addition, we support the recommendation that you defer any decision on the substantive changes in the BMR until you get the report.
  5. I would like to address the grandfather clause.
  6. First of all, the one from Supervisor Maxwell is far too late in the game.
  7. I want to make it clear that this is an amendment to 315, which means it doesn't just apply to Supervisor Maxwell's legislation. It applies to any adjustments to the BMR in the future.
  8. We'd like to suggest as Ms. Schindler has done that the grandfather clause be on the date of the first filing.
  9. Staff has indicated you have what's called the rush to judgment and the defense of filings where people file and sit on them.
  10. We think if you move the date up to the first filing, there should be a review by staff, perhaps the Zoning Administrator, once a year to determine whether or not the project sponsor is actually diligently pursuing the project.
  11. And if in fact the Zoning Administrator makes a determination they are not, then there would be fair game for any changes in the BMR legislation.
  12. And just to ensure that there is transparency and an opportunity to appeal if there is a disagreement with the Zoning Administrator's yearly report that could be appealed to the Board of Appeals.
  13. Following are some suggestions the Zoning Administrator should take into account to ensure that people are not banking their application: After there has been a planner assigned for the environment, that person should determine whether the project sponsor is taking advantage of having a scoping meeting, that following the scoping meeting the project sponsor has engaged a professional environmental consultant to press forward with the environmental evaluation. He should also consider things like as or when the project sponsor has asked or responded to meetings to discuss design and other approvals; that prior to the time that either a negative declaration or EIR is published, that the project sponsor have filed all of the other needed applications and requests whether they be variances, whether they be conditional uses, whether they be 309 exceptions prior to the publication of the negative declaration and the EIR.

Gregg Miller – Pillsbury

  1. I'm a real estate and land use attorney at the Pillsbury firm here in San Francisco.
  2. I'd like to echo the remarks of the previous two speakers
  3. We have proposed an amendment that is very similar to the one that Morrison and Forester and Ms. Schindler's firm have proposed this week.
  4. We have added on language to address the concern about the rush to filing, and then the potential for the project sponsors to subsequently sit on the applications.
  5. What this carved out language basically does is looks back to the first application filing date.
  6. If you have an application on file prior to this ordinance becoming effective, then you are carved out.
  7. From there it goes on to basically say that you can't just sit on your application. You have to continue to diligently pursue it with the Department.
  8. It is up to the Zoning Administrator to evaluate whether project sponsors are sitting on their applications.
  9. That is done through a series of criteria that the Zoning Administrator may look at to determine whether or not the project sponsor is still actively pursuing the application.
  10. That includes whether or not the sponsor has participated in a scoping meeting with MEA. Subsequent to such a meeting, has the project sponsor engaged an environmental consultant to work with the department? Then whether the project sponsor has filed all other applications with the department that would be necessary for a site or building permit to be issued for the project. Then finally whether the project sponsor has hired an architect and submitted conceptual plans and has, subject to the department's resources, been able to meet with the department to go over the project design. The Zoning Administrator would make that determination.
  11. If the project sponsor disagreed, the project sponsor would have the right to appeal that decision along the lines of any other type of Zoning Administrator appeals.
  12. We think this is a fair fix for the legislation.
  13. We think it's necessary, in any event, because the way the legislation is currently drafted, if you got your CU yesterday, it's unclear what your requirements are.

Jazzie Collins – South of Market Community Action Network and South of Market (SOMA) Community

  1. We agree with the recommendations supervisor Maxwell has presented.
  2. On-site, off-site and in lieu. Those are strong recommendations.
  3. Those are amendments that need to be made to the inclusionary housing and we stand in support.
  4. I ask you to pass this as amended and end the inclusionary housing fiasco that is before us not.

Calvin Welsch – Council of Community Housing Organizations

  1. I'd like to substantially support staff's recommendation except in those areas that I disagree with staff's recommendation, which is twofold.
  2. We have proposed an amendment that we think will address one of Mr. Badiner's concerns, which is the definitional question of what is a project.
  3. There is a real world situation out there in which there's parcelization going on – sometimes three and four different parcels of two or three units have come in – although the total is nine or ten or 12 units, they come in under the 10.
  4. We have some language that we think will address that and also deal with Mr. Badiner's concern about defining what is a project in a little bit more rigorous way.
  5. First I'd like to speak to two other matters. One is staff's recommendation that you not go forward on the off-site requirement, that you hold that for the study.
  6. I think that's a misplaced assumption that this is an economic issue.
  7. It's not an economic issue.
  8. It's basically a policy question.
  9. This City and County either supports inclusionary zoning on-site or it doesn't.
  10. The recommendation for a one-mile radius is I think a rational approach.
  11. 85, 90% of these projects are south of Market and east of Van Ness.
  12. 85, 90% of the potential off-site project sites are south of Market and east of Van Ness.
  13. No one has ever proposed doing a project in Rincon Hill and building the affordable housing in Pacific Heights.
  14. It's not going to happen.
  15. If you actually do the math, the one-mile radius I think is the reality of the situation.
  16. A majority of commissioners have repeatedly said we want the units on-site. We don't want them off-site.
  17. That's what this legislation will guarantee.
  18. It's not an economic impact.
  19. The question is when should this apply?
  20. I'm happy to see that the big-time attorneys are arguing because at least some of them understand what the game is.
  21. That is parking and approval.
  22. Getting approval for a project at an old rate of fees and requirements and sitting on that project; and that you have no ability of hurrying that developer on.
  23. If we say they've got to pay the fees, in effect, when they pull their planning/building permit, which is what the ordinance does, they will pull their permit.
  24. We will ensure that these projects are built.
  25. They won't sit on it.
  26. I think the existing language is just fine.
  27. I would urge you to approve it.

Andrew Junius – Rubin and Junius

  1. Just a comment on the grandfather provision.
  2. Projects that have been approved and projects that are in the pipeline have already committed. They're already invested.
  3. They have spent money; they have hired designers. They are well down the road.
  4. The economics of the projects are fixed.
  5. To think about hitting those types of projects with new rules in simply unfair and it's something that has not been done in the past.
  6. Pipeline projects are traditionally grandfathered with these kinds of provisions and it is crucial that these rules not be changed so that they affect a large number of pipeline projects.
  7. The staff report lists I think 25 projects that have been approved and not yet pulled building permits.
  8. There are a whole bunch more that are stuck in the system and the system is slow.
  9. They're grinding it out doing the best they can.
  10. Those projects should not be penalized.

ACTION: Following hearing, continued to 4/13/06 with instructions to staff to provide the Commission with a chart that shows what is current; what the Supervisor proposes; and what staff proposes.

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, and W. Lee

NAYES: S. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

15a. 2004.0852EMZXCV (A. LIGHT: (415) 558-6254)

1 HAWTHORNE PLACE (a.k.a. 645 HOWARD STREET) - southeast corner of intersection with Howard Street, Lot 047, in Assessor's Block 3735 - Request for adoption of California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) findings related to the adoption of the Mitigated Negative Declaration for a property within a C-3-O(SD) (Downtown, Office, Special) Zoning District, and currently within a 150-S Height and Bulk District. The proposed project is to demolish an existing four-story-over-basement office building and construct an approximately 150-foot tall, 15-story building containing approximately 135 dwelling units, approximately 4,078 square feet of ground floor retail space, and an underground garage with 78 stalls that can accommodate up to 135 parking spaces using mechanical stackers and valet service. A variant of the project, which is requested by the project sponsor at the urging of the Planning Department, would be a 250-foot tall, 25-story building containing up to 189 dwelling units, approximately 4,078 square feet of ground floor retail space, and an underground garage with 78 stalls that can accommodate up to 135 parking spaces using mechanical stackers and valet service (the same amount of parking requested in the original 150-foot project proposal.) The Planning Commission will consider both variants described above. The 250-foot project variant would require the requested change from a 150-S Height and Bulk District to a 250-S Height and Bulk District as described above, which would ultimately require the Board of Supervisors' approval of an amendment to the Downtown Element of the General Plan and an amendment to the existing Height and Bulk District Map, with the recommendation of the Planning Commission.

Preliminary Recommendation: Adoption of CEQA findings and Mitigated Negative Declaration.

SPEAKERS:

Ezra Mercy – Project Sponsor

  1. 1 Hawthorn represents one of the last remaining downtown infill sites.
  2. The neighborhood is already dense.
  3. It's a built out area that is filled with low and mid-rise and high-rise neighbors and a variety of uses.
  4. The site is near transit, jobs, housing, entertainment, retail and educational institutions.
  5. We think high density is therefore a very appropriate goal for the site–both to maximize market-rate housing and to maximize the inclusionary benefits that we will provide.
  6. We have tried to address parking in a progressive way for the taller project for the 250-foot variant.
  7. We are seeking a lower parking ratio than is considered normal.
  8. We're only asking for 0.75 parking spaces per one.
  9. The ground floor has got a corner retail parcel on the corner of Howard and Hawthorne.
  10. The below grade car storage is satisfied through car elevators and stackers and it's all accommodated below grade.
  11. The upper floor of the building is what we call the side core plan because it's a relatively peculiarly shaped site.
  12.  We've located the elevator core at the side, and then the residential units view out on all three sides.
  13. The upper floor plan has a setback on Howard Street.
  14. We are looking at a variety of permeations of the unit count between 189 and 168 total residential units.
  15. There is a setback at the 85-foot level.
  16. The roof garden is for common open space, landscaping and common area for entertainment of folks living in the building.

ACTION: Approved adoption of CEQA findings

AYES: Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander and Antonini

MOTION: 17211

15b. 2004.0852EMZXCV (A. LIGHT: (415) 558-6254)

1 HAWTHORNE PLACE (a.k.a. 645 HOWARD STREET) - southeast corner of intersection with Howard Street, Lot 047, in Assessor's Block 3735 - Request for adoption of a resolution recommending to the Board of Supervisors a General Plan amendment to amend Map 5 ( Proposed Height and Bulk Districts ) of the Downtown Element of the San Francisco General Plan changing the height limit for the subject property from 150 feet to 250 feet. The subject property lies within a C-3-O(SD) (Downtown, Office, Special) Zoning District, and currently within a 150-S Height and Bulk District. See item  a above for a project description.

Preliminary Recommendation: Adoption of Resolution

SPEAKERS: Same as those listed for item 15a.

ACTION: Approved

AYES: Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander and Antonini

RESOLUTION: 17212

15c. 2004.0852EMZXCV (A. LIGHT: (415) 558-6254)

1 HAWTHORNE PLACE (a.k.a. 645 HOWARD STREET) - southeast corner of intersection with Howard Street, Lot 047, in Assessor's Block 3735 - Request for adoption of a resolution recommending that the Board of Supervisors approve a Height and Bulk Zoning Map Amendment of Map 1H to change the subject property from a 150-S Height and Bulk District to a 250-S Height and Bulk District. The subject property lies within a C-3-O(SD) (Downtown, Office, Special) Zoning District, and currently within a 150-S Height and Bulk District. See item  a above for a project description.

Preliminary Recommendation: Adoption of Resolution

SPEAKERS: Same as those listed for item 15a.

ACTION: Approved

AYES: Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander and Antonini

RESOLUTION: 17213

15d. 2004.0852EMZXCV (A. LIGHT: (415) 558-6254)

1 HAWTHORNE PLACE (a.k.a. 645 HOWARD STREET) - southeast corner of intersection with Howard Street, Lot 047, in Assessor's Block 3735 - Request for a Determination of Compliance under Section 309 of the Planning Code with exceptions for separation of towers, rear yard, ground level wind currents, independently-accessible parking, freight and loading, and bulk requirements. The subject property lies within a C-3-O (SD) (Downtown, Office, Special) Zoning District, and currently within a 150-S Height and Bulk District. See item  a above for a project description.

Preliminary Recommendation: Approval with Conditions

SPEAKERS: Same as those listed for item 15a.

ACTION: Approved

AYES: Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander and Antonini

MOTION: 17214

15e. 2004.0852EMZXCV (A. LIGHT: (415) 558-6254)

1 HAWTHORNE PLACE (a.k.a. 645 HOWARD STREET) - southeast corner of intersection with Howard Street, Lot 047, in Assessor's Block 3735 - Request for a Conditional Use authorization to permit non-accessory parking and increased residential density. The project lies within a C-3-O(SD) (Downtown, Office, Special) Zoning District, and currently within a 150-S Height and Bulk District. See item  a above for a project description.

Preliminary Recommendation: Approval with Conditions

SPEAKERS: Same as those listed for item 15a.

ACTION: Approved

AYES: Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander and Antonini

MOTION: 17215

15f. 2004.0852EMZXCV (A. LIGHT: (415) 558-6254)

1 HAWTHORNE PLACE (a.k.a. 645 HOWARD STREET) - southeast corner of intersection with Howard Street, Lot 047, in Assessor's Block 3735 - Request for a Variance for dwelling unit exposure requirements under Section 140 of the Planning Code. The project lies within a C-3-O(SD) (Downtown, Office, Special) Zoning District, and currently within a 150-S Height and Bulk District. The Zoning Administrator will hear the variance application concurrently with the Planning Commission at this same hearing. See item  a above for a project description.

SPEAKERS: Same as those listed for item 15a.

ACTION: Zoning Administrator closed public hearing and granted the variance

16. 2006.0090T (J. SWITZKY: (415) 575-6815)

Off-Street Parking in C-3 Zoning Districts - Ordinance (File 060036) introduced by Supervisor Alioto-Pier on January 10, 2006 and referred to the Planning Commission on January 18, 2006, amending the San Francisco Planning Code by amending Sections 123, 151.1, 151.2, 154.1, 155, 155.5, 157, 166, 167, 204.5, 303, 309, 790.10, and 890.10 to alter controls regarding required and allowed off-street parking for residential uses in C-3 zoning districts, Floor Area Ratio exemptions and incentives related to parking, bicycle parking, car sharing (including definitions and certification of car sharing organizations), separating housing costs from parking costs, urban design requirements for parking, and adopting findings.

(Continued from Regular Meeting of March 16, 2006)

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Without hearing, continued to April 13, 2006

AYES: Antonini, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, S. Lee, W. Lee and Olague

ABSENT: Alexander

F. PUBLIC COMMENT

At this time, members of the public may address the Commission on items of interest to the public that are within the subject matter jurisdiction of the Commission except agenda items. With respect to agenda items, your opportunity to address the Commission will be afforded when the item is reached in the meeting with one exception. When the agenda item has already been reviewed in a public hearing at which members of the public were allowed to testify and the Commission has closed the public hearing, your opportunity to address the Commission must be exercised during the Public Comment portion of the Calendar. Each member of the public may address the Commission for up to three minutes.

The Brown Act forbids a commission from taking action or discussing any item not appearing on the posted agenda, including those items raised at public comment. In response to public comment, the commission is limited to:

(1) responding to statements made or questions posed by members of the public; or

(2) requesting staff to report back on a matter at a subsequent meeting; or

(3) directing staff to place the item on a future agenda. (Government Code Section 54954.2(a))

None

Adjournment: 5:22 p.m. In memory of Mama Dee

THESE MINUTES ARE PROPOSED FOR ADOPTION AT THE REGULAR MEETING OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION ON THURSDAY, MAY 18, 2006.

SPEAKERS: None

ACTION: Approved

AYES: S. Lee, Bradford-Bell, Hughes, Olague, W. Lee

ABSENT: Alexander, Antonini

Last updated: 11/17/2009 10:00:20 PM