Agendas and Minutes

Planning Commission (View All)

Regular Meeting

Minutes
Tuesday, December 09, 2003

ASHLAND PLANNING COMMISSION
REGULAR MEETING
MINUTES
DECEMBER 9, 2003


CALL TO ORDER- Chair Russ Chapman called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.

Commissioners Present:
Russ Chapman, Chair
Mike Morris
Dave Dotterrer
Kerry KenCairn
Marilyn Briggs
Colin Swales
John Fields
Ray Kistler
Cameron Hanson
Kerry KenCairn - conflict of interest for PA2003-151 - joined meeting for PA2003-154

Absent Members: None

Council Liaison: Alex Amarotico - not present

High School Liaison: None

SOU Liaison: None

Staff Present:
John McLaughlin, Director, and Community Development
Bill Molnar, Senior Planner
Maria Harris, Associate Planner
Sue Yates, Executive Secretary

ANNOUNCEMENTS
The community drop-in "chat" with Planning Commissioners and a staff person is scheduled for December 23, 2003 at 4:00 p.m. in the Community Development and Engineering Services Building.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES & FINDINGS
It was moved and seconded to approve the minutes of the November 12, 2003 meeting.

Briggs noted a typographical error in the Findings for PA2003-127, Condition 21, should read: "…signs shall be installed in at least two places clearly designating the five public parking spaces…" It was moved and seconded to approve the Findings for PA2003-127 with the amendment. Swales he disagrees with the wording "footprint" versus "gross square footage" and cast the only "no" vote to approve the Findings.

PUBLIC FORUM
No one came forth to speak.

TYPE II PUBLIC HEARING

PLANNING ACTION 2003-151
REQUEST FOR OUTLINE AND FINAL PLAN APPROVAL FOR A SIX-LOT SUBDIVISION UNDER THE PERFORMANCE STANDARDS OPTION FOR THE PROPERTY LOCATED AT 930 TOLMAN CREEK ROAD. A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT IS REQUESTED TO CONSTRUCT ACCESSORY RESIDENTIAL UNITS IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE PRIMARY RESIDENCE UPON TWO OF THE SIX LOTS. A VARIANCE IS REQUESTED TO THE REQUIRED 50 FOOT DISTANCE BETWEEN INTERSECTIONS, AS WELL AS AN EXCEPTION TO PERMIT A SECTION OF THE NEW STREET TO INCORPORATE A PLANTING STRIP WIDTH OF FIVE FEET RATHER THAN THE REQUIRED SEVEN TO EIGHT FEET.
APPLICANT: HAMILTON PLACE, LLC

Site Visits or Ex Parte Contacts - Fields had a drive-by site visit. Hanson did not have a site visit. All other Commissioners had a site visit.

STAFF REPORT
Harris said the proposal is to develop the site across from Diane and Tolman Creek Road on Tolman Creek Road. It is a 2.7 acre parcel. The proposal is just for the residentially zoned portion of the property, zoned R-1-5. On the east side of Hamilton Creek, the property is zoned M-1. There is an existing barn on the property. The site has a gradual slope to the northeast and becomes steeper along the banks of the creek. Hamilton Creek is the major natural feature. There are five trees in the riparian area. There are two madrone trees on Lot 5. There are three trees where the street will intersect with Tolman Creek Road. The Tree Commission comments are in the packet.

The proposal is to create six single family residential lots. Lots 4 and 5 are proposed to have accessory residential units at the rear of the lots above the garages. There is a private alley that provides access to Lots 3, 4, and 5. There is an existing alley on the southern property line that extends from Spring Hill Drive that will be extended to the north with a public street built along the northern boundary of the property. There will be an open space area at the terminus of the street that is adjacent to the floodplain corridor. There is also an existing conservation and natural drainageway easement on the property.

Staff has four main issues with the proposal.
1. Variance for the distance between intersections on a collector street.
The proposal includes a request to locate the new street closer than the required 50-foot minimum distance between the intersection of Tolman Creek Road and Diane Streets. There are two unusual aspects to the situation as outlined in the Staff Report. There are four main benefits to this proposal also outlined in the Staff Report. Staff believes this request meets the criteria for a Variance.

2. Exception to the Street Standards.
Normally a seven foot wide parkrow is the required minimum on a neighborhood street. The proposal is to use a five foot parkrow for the first section of the street along the narrow Lot 1. Staff believes the applicants could reduce the side yard setback from three to four feet from the proposed building envelope of the structure because it's on the interior of the subdivision. They could pick up a couple of feet and add it to the parkrow. It does not seem like there is demonstrable difficulty in meeting the standard. They have some flexibility. The narrower parkrow also does not create an equal or superior transportation facility. A narrower planting strip does not support larger canopy trees. A more canopied street produces traffic calming. Larger trees keep temperatures cooler. The wider the buffer for pedestrians, the better the walking environment. Staff is suggesting this exception to the criteria has not been met and recommends the Planning Commission not approve this portion of the proposal. Condition 11 addresses this item.

3. Street Design.
Harris quoted from the Street Connectivity Approval Standard 5 of the Ashland Street Standards. That standard addresses natural features. Also, the Performance Standards Options Outline Plan criteria require that natural features are included in the open space, common areas, and unbuildable lands.

This site presented a challenge because the alley adjacent to the southern property line was built before the Street Standards were in place. The design presented in the proposal is to create an open space area at the end of the street, adjacent to the alley. Staff believes that meets the intent of the standard in providing a buffer and protecting the natural feature and also providing visual and physical access. What happens to this street when it gets extended to the north? Staff believes that the concept presented would meet the standards because the street veers away from the Hamilton Creek corridor. Staff would suggest that the final engineering be reworked to shift the street in an easterly direction so that when it's extended to the north it can run along the floodplain corridor, 20 feet from the top of the bank. This would also address Condition 11.

4. Potential impact on the floodplain corridor in the conservation easement.
This concern relates to Lot 6. The rear yard of Lot 6 is in the conservation easement. The building envelope is shown four feet from the conservation easement. The proposal mentions building a deck cantilevered into the conservation easement. The landscaping plan for the subdivision was updated showing the rear yard area planted with native plants and an irrigation system. Staff's concern is with the proximity of the building envelope to the floodplain corridor. There is some spillover from the work on foundations of buildings during construction into these protected areas if it is too close. Even after projects like this are built, several years down the road, sometimes property owners unknowingly start disturbing the natural area by terracing and building yard areas. Staff is suggesting that the building envelope setback be increased to ten feet from the conservation easement floodplain boundary line. Also that the landscaping and irrigation that is shown is included with the subdivision improvements and be maintained by the homeowner's association and that a deed restriction be placed on the property. Fencing and earthwork would be prohibited in the rear yard area of Lot 6. Harris showed some slides showing how other floodplain areas have been disturbed by homeowners residing next to a riparian area.

Staff is recommending that the application be approved for Outline and Final Plan, the Variance, and CUP for the two accessory residential units. Staff does not believe the application meets the Street Standard criteria (addressed in Condition 11). There are 22 attached Conditions.

Chapman asked about the TID letter. McLaughlin said TID has to sign off on the survey and it does not require a Planning Commission action.

Swales thought a side yard setback on a corner lot had to be ten feet. Is it wise to reduce it to four feet? The street is going close to the building as well. Harris said, though it is permitted under the subdivision, there is a balance. Is the parkrow width and the value it adds to the street and pedestrian environment/traffic calming a trade-off that is acceptable? Swales thought the Tree Commission thought there could be some flexibility with regards to the parkrow. With such a low traffic volume in this area, is there any reason the sidewalk could not be adjacent to the curb and not have a parkrow? The street planting could be on the house side of the sidewalk. Harris said the Tree Commission specified using a seven foot minimum parkrow and large stature trees.

PUBLIC HEARING

ALEX KNECHT
LAURIE SAGER, KENCAIRN ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN

Knecht said the parkrow is constraining. In hearing Swales' comment, maybe this would be a good situation for the parkrow in between the sidewalk and the property line. He would like to keep the parkrow at five feet. They opened up the parkrow in the rest of the project (Lot 2 through 5) and they all have eight foot parkrows. They would like to keep the six foot sideyard setback. (Sager showed overheads of street elevations.) Sager said a six foot fence could be installed along the sideyard, creating a barrier or make the space feel small. They wanted to plant a tree to accommodate the scale and not extend over the roof of the two-story building. For the comfort of the homeowner and the pedestrian, she would prefer their plan over Staff's preferred alternative. Or, shifting the sidewalk might be a better solution.

Knecht would like a Condition that the four foot setback is acceptable for Lot 1.

Knecht said with regard to the conservation easement and Lot 6, he noted that the 100 year floodplain is typically plotted on properties by using aerials and topographical maps. He has made application with FEMA to adjust the 100 year floodplain line noted on Thornton Engineering's plan. He believes the conservation easement provides an ample buffer.

Sager said they could extend their fencing during construction to protect the conservation easement. They could also write something in the deed restrictions and/or CC&R's stating nothing can be built in the conservation easement area.

Sager believes the protection of the floodplain corridor could potentially benefit by keeping more of the open space in rather than a road. Similarly, if there is a little additional space to the north that is not going to be developed with houses, that could provide more protection for the riparian corridor as well.

Knecht said the fourth parking space is available for Lots 4 and 5 on the revised plan, if they find they want to build the accessory units more than 500 square feet.

Swales wondered if there is any anecdotal evidence how high the water level got during the 1997 flood. Knecht did not know, but his project engineer was right on the mark on Clay Creek. Hamilton Creek is supplied by a 24 inch culvert. McLaughlin said Staff's position is that the floodplain line is not just about water conveyance. We are looking at a conservation area that represents a riparian area. Over the years, we have encroached significantly into our riparian areas throughout the City. The landscaping and vegetation really serves a purpose of the natural resource that is there - water quality treatment, wildlife habitat. We are in the process of revamping our ordinances to widen further the standards to protect those areas further than we do today. This is an opportunity to say this is where the line should be at a natural break in the slope. Pull back from that instead of building right to it and not negatively impact it for generations to come. If anything, we are setting a high standard for the development of the remainder of the corridor to the north. We are looking at opportunities to remove culverts in some areas and open things back up and re-establish the riparian areas throughout the community.

Briggs asked Knecht if he would consider letting Lot 2 use the same driveway apron as Lot 1. It would save a lot of asphalt. She also asked Knecht to consider building the accessory units less than 500 square feet. She would like to see the yard area instead of using up yard area for another parking space. Knecht wasn't sure what size he would build, but would like to keep his options open.

Dotterrer asked if there was a reason Lot 6 couldn't stop at the conservation easement. Knecht said it would restrict the building envelope back even more. Dotterrer asked if there are plans to landscape behind Lot 6. Knecht said there are plans (L-1 and L-2 in the site plan section of the packet) showing the native plantings proposed. There is an irrigation plan also.

Morris wondered if Knecht has a building plan for Lot 1. Knecht said he has looked at building designs that will fit that lot.

Chapman said he is fine with Conditions as written, but would like to explore Swales' idea. He doesn't have a problem with the sidewalk being placed next to the street in order to give the houses a little more room. Briggs would like to see the sidewalk further away from the house. Swales said there is not parking along there, so there would not be a need for stepping from the car to the sidewalk. Dotterrer would agree.

Kistler wondered if there is enough room to get a car straightened out to pull into the garages on Lots 4A and 5A. Harris said there should be enough room.

Kistler liked the idea of the shared driveway apron. Knecht has not considered it, but likes the idea.

Fields wanted clarification on the parkrow modification. Swales suggested flipping the sidewalk and the parkrow (five foot sidewalk, five foot parkrow).

Harris asked the Commissioners to think about the impact a sidewalk next to the street would have on the pedestrian environment. Staff would recommend sticking to what is proposed instead of placing the sidewalk next to the street. Harris reminded them it is a balance between "equal or superior transportation facility" with the individual lots. What are you taking away from the pedestrians by putting them out on the curb? A person purchasing in the area would know that is the situation up front. Think abut the benefits of the shade trees and the buffer.

Molnar said we will be looking at finishing off the other side of the street to the north. He reiterated Harris' comment that Staff would prefer to go with the proposal of a six foot setback, five foot sidewalk, five foot parkrow. This would match the area on the other side of the street. Do we want to start deviating from the standard?

Hanson agreed with Staff.

SUSAN PECK, 936 Spring Way, said she lives just south of the proposal. She wondered if the street would be wider in the new development than the existing Spring Way. Is there a plan to make Spring Way a one-way street in either direction?

Harris said the alley will be extended at the same width until it meets the new street. There has not been a consideration at this time to make the street one-way. Peck is concerned that the alley will become a thoroughfare for Lots 1 through 5. Harris is not sure why the alley would be used since there is nothing to be gained by taking that route.

Peck would like no parking signs along the alley. Harris said this is typically not done in the beginning. It is usually done when there is a problem.

Swales said there is a provision in the ordinance for limiting the time one can park in an alley.

COMMISSIONERS' DISCUSSION AND MOTION
Harris said going to a curbside sidewalk is out of balance. It would be better to stick with the exception of a five foot sidewalk and a five foot parkrow. The curbside sidewalk deviates even further from the City standard. Eliminate "minimum of a seven foot wide parkrow" from Condition 11. The Commissioners agreed.

Eliminate Condition 23.

Dotterrer wondered if Condition 15 1) is repetitious. It's already in the CC&R's. It is pretty clear what the homeowners' association is responsible for. Is 15 2) redundant also? Harris said 2) was trying to get some reference to the conservation easement in the CC&R's.

Dotterrer addressed the area behind Lot 6. It is set up so the area will be landscaped and eventually maintained by the homeowners' association. There are only six people sharing in the maintenance of this area. It is going to get expensive. He thinks that should be taken out. It is an area required to be maintained by the homeowners' association, but it won't get used. He does not believe the homeowners should be responsible for maintaining it. He would rather go with the deed restriction.

Harris said it is a difficult issue. Staff does not want the next homeowner to be tempted to disturb the back yard. It is difficult to enforce. It might be best to pull the homeowners out of it except for the up-front improvements. The owner of Lot 6 would be responsible. McLaughlin said Staff wants to make sure someone is responsible and it is documented who is responsible.

Dotterrer suggested changing the third sentence in Condition 16 to "The rear yard of Lot 6 in the floodplain corridor/conservation easement shall be landscaped and irrigated as part of the subdivision improvements, and maintained by the owner of Lot 6."

Briggs asked that Harris look at changing the wording in Condition 7 instead of referring to the "area behind Lot 6", can it read "to the east of Lot 6?" Harris agreed.

The Commissioners agreed that the street location is acceptable (Variance).

With regard to the building envelope on Lot 6, McLaughlin said the applicant proposed four feet. Staff is asking for ten feet. Briggs is willing to go along with Staff. Hanson agreed, stating he wants to discourage the homeowner from landscaping into the conservation easement. McLaughlin said they are looking at construction impacts. The excavation for the foundation will spill down the bank. Chapman agreed. The Commissioners agreed with Staff in a 5/4 straw vote.

Dotterrer moved to approve PA2003-152 with the Conditions as written and changed above. A brief recap: Condition 11 - remove seven foot wide parkrow, leave Condition 15 1) and 2), Condition 16 - that the owner of Lot 6 maintain the rear yard. Swales seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

KenCairn rejoined the meeting

PLANNING ACTION 2003-154
REQUEST FOR SITE REVIEW TO CONSTRUCT A 35,584 SQUARE FOOT, TWO-STORY ADDITION TO THE NORTHWEST CORNER (JUST WEST OF THE EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT) OF THE EXISTING ASHLAND COMMUNITY HOSPITAL LOCATED AT 280 MAPLE STREET. A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT IS INCLUDED TO CONSTRUCT A SMALL GENERATOR BUILDING (672 SQUARE FEET) AND ADD SOME ADDITIONAL PARKING SPACES IN AN AREA NOT INDICATED FOR THESE USES IN THE 1991 ASHLAND COMMUNITY HOSPITAL MASTER PLAN.
APPLICANT: ASHLAND COMMUNITY HOSPITAL

Site Visits or Ex Parte Contacts - Kistler said Jim McNamara is a representative for a number of clients that he is works with, but he does not believe it will hinder his ability to make a decision. He is not a part of this project. He had a site visit. KenCairn heard part of this project when she was the Tree Commission meeting on another project. Site visits were made by all.

STAFF REPORT
Molnar said the Ashland Community Hospital (ACH) is requesting a two-story expansion at the upper half of the property. The application will accommodate additional operating suites, a special study room and a new admitting area. A portion of the upper story has not yet been designated for use. The addition is intended to be of similar style and materials as the existing hospital. With this expansion, the whole campus is butting up against the maximum lot coverage of the zone (65 percent). It was also noticed as a Conditional Use Permit for a generator building. There are few other parking spaces at this corner. There is a graveled driveway that is required to be paved as part of the current addition for fire apparatus.

Staff has identified three issues related to the project and with the changes they are requesting, this will result in a better project, more consistent with City policies.

Construction of a sidewalk system around the campus
Currently, there is a public sidewalk along Maple Street. There is a requirement as part of the current addition to construct a public sidewalk the entire length of Chestnut. This application proposes a sidewalk along the southern boundary (Catalina) and a request that the remaining section (eastern boundary of Catalina) not be installed as part of this application. Staff believes, given the size of the facility and expansion, it is time to complete the perimeter sidewalk system as discussed in the 1991 master plan. It is Staff's feeling that sidewalk systems are very important where there is a high usage of on-street parking. With the adoption of the master plan and the HC zone, we have seen an increase in not only hospital projects, but other medical uses in the area. Most of the time during the day, on-street parking is 85 to 95 percent full. The primary reason is for pedestrian safety. Because of the grade from the curb, one has to walk between the car and travel lane.

With regard to the construction of the sidewalk, there are seven existing street trees. Those trees are only going to get larger so deferring sidewalk construction leads to more contentious issues at the end. At this point, the trees could possibly be transplanted, allowing for additional planting between the sidewalk and the parking area.

Tree removal for the project.
Molnar showed a site plan of the project. They have identified about 15 trees to be removed. The trees are primarily in the proposed building footprint. About half the trees will need to be removed to accommodate the addition. The other trees are to accommodate grading and excavation resulting from reconfiguring the parking area. Staff felt there was a possibility of saving the 14 inch spruce and to some degree, three, eight inch maple trees on the border of the newly landscaped area walkway. Since we don't have a grading plan, it is difficult to tell whether or not the excavation would be so severe that it might be impossible to save the trees. Perhaps they could be relocated. Molnar felt that with some changes to the site plan by pulling back the parking area or eliminating a space, the spruce could be saved. None of the spaces are identified as a compact space. The Tree Commission was supportive of retaining the spruce tree.

Bicycle parking.
Bicycle parking is an ordinance requirement. One bicycle space is required for every five automobile parking spaces. The parking is going to 160 parking spaces, requiring 32 bicycle parking spaces Fifteen percent are required to be sheltered. The applicants would like to provide 16 spaces at this time. This requirement is not based so much on use as the number of automobile parking spaces. Staff felt this is not different than any other medical facility that is required to provide parking.

Staff does not have any objections to the Conditional Use Permit request. It is a low intensity use. Parking spaces near the generator will be low impact.

Staff is supportive of the continued viability of the hospital. The three areas of concern have been addressed in the Conditions of approval - Conditions 2, 4, and 10.

PUBLIC HEARING

JIM WATSON, Administrator, Ashland Community Hospital expressed how important this addition is to the future of the hospital. He introduced the project team.

KURT KNUDSEN, Project Manager
COREY MORRIS, Project Architect
GREG COVEY, Landscaper
JIM MCNAMARA, Consultant

C. Morris elaborated on the design intent. One of the main goals is to add some much needed square footage to the surgery department. The grade has created problems in trying to fit the parking in. The addition is connected to the existing activities.

They have tried to match the design of the existing building. The generator building is about 4000 square feet.

Covey said Donn Todt, Parks Department looked at the spruce tree and said it is a relatively weak-rooted tree and subject to blow down in high winds. The three Norway Maples are located about two feet below the proposed second floor level. They would be looking at some extreme cuts during construction and would increase the risk of filling around those trees. They have provided for relocation of the healthiest trees. Now is the perfect time to move the trees. The landscape plan provides for a better shade canopy. They are exceeding the number trees required per parking space.

C. Morris asked the Commission to reconsider Condition 4 - the removal of the four foot high chain link fence. The fence was installed years ago for many reasons. From a safety liability, they would like to keep it.

Covey addressed Condition 2 - construction of the sidewalk. He said the existing planter is approximately eleven feet wide. There is a five to six foot grade change around the stairway. It is the primary crossing from the main entrance of the hospital to the administration building and gets quite a bit of traffic. There are seven existing maple trees. Donn Todt said moving the red maples would set them back in growth for several years. The hospital presents Catalina Drive as its front door. To accommodate a five foot sidewalk along the curb would be to construct a unit masonry retaining wall at the back of the sidewalk and then four foot wide planter between the top of the wall and the existing parking. It would take away any ability to soften or green the wall face. The trees would have to be moved to the top of the retaining wall to create enough buffer for a parking space overhang. They would like to offer flexibility or alternative concepts to provide access from Catalina up to the hospital. They would like to offer constructing an additional staircase in lieu of a sidewalk to provide more access to the upper parking lot on the east side of the hospital.

C. Morris clarified that he would like the Commission to consider not accepting Conditions 2 (part), 4, and 11

Knudsen said since the hospital master plan is not at project build-out, he hoped the Commission would consider revisiting the sidewalk requirement at a later time. They are trying to preserve scarce hospital resources to put money into bricks and mortar to serve the needs of the community. They calculate the retaining wall at approximately $48,000. A rail would have to be constructed on top of that. The whole first impression of the hospital would change from something that is quite beautiful to something cold and gray.

Chapman asked Knudsen if the expense argument is taken out, what is he left with. Knudsen said they are left with image, whether or not pedestrian safety is really accomplished by constructing it at this location. The pedestrian traffic is not up and down the street. The sidewalk will be an engineering feat to construct.

Chapman is concerned about the passenger getting out of cars and ending up in sticker bushes.

Watson said it is mostly employees that park on the street

KenCairn wondered if there would be an opportunity to put a sidewalk up at the parking lot level on the lower side of the parking lot with a couple of stairways. This would not necessitate a retaining wall. Knudsen would support that if it would work. A five foot sidewalk would be problematic.

McLaughlin agrees this is not an easy thing to do. However, if you are doing this much site-work and grading of the upper parking lot, now is a time to install the sidewalk. If the Commission deems the sidewalk unnecessary at this point, then it is not necessary for the future of the hospital to have a sidewalk at this location.

WIL THOMSON, 360 Maple Street, lives a block above the hospital and he is concerned about parking. Currently, Chestnut Street is full of cars all day long. There is a residential neighborhood above Chestnut. The hospital is currently purchasing a building on his side that is to become a hospice. What if we spared a little of the green area for parking on-campus? The more parking on-campus, the more will be freed up on the street.

DELTRA FERGUSON, 345 Maple Street, said the quality of life for the residents in the area of the hospital will be affected by increased traffic generation. Currently, there is a slow process of encroachment in terms of cars parking all along the streets along the perimeter of the hospital. Sixty percent of employees come from outside Ashland. There are currently 152 on-site parking spaces, the majority reserved for patients. Upon completion, there will be 160 on-site parking spaces and 33 off-site spaces will be eliminated. That's a deficit of 25 parking spaces and there is already a problem. Cars line Catalina, Maple to Maple Way, to Scenic and the residential quality of the neighborhood is greatly diminished. There must be some short-term and long-term solutions. She would propose using the green area for more parking. Implement a parking strategy. Bring the bus up Grant Street. Ask the hospital to include a bus stop. This issue needs to be dealt with responsibly.

McLaughlin clarified that the applicants are showing the removal of 33 spaces on-site. The parking is going to be reconfigured to increase the parking by eight spaces. There will be no loss of parking. There will be a net gain of eight parking spaces. Dotterrer said the total gain on-street/off-street is four.

Chapman would like to explore the bus serving the hospital. Watson said he has talked with RVTD for ten years. They need to aggressively find solutions. The hospital has a small shuttle. Ultimately, the employees are going to have to park away and shuttle.

Knudsen agrees completely if there were any feasible way the Planning Commission would let them build on the grassy area, they would love to do so. If they were to go any farther into green areas, they would be exceeding the 65 percent. C. Morris showed a drawing with the parking in the green area. McLaughlin said that would involve another hearing - a modification of the master plan. He said they are finding the medical uses have changed, such as the number of practitioners in each office, and as a result, they probably need to upgrade the parking standards.

C Morris said they would prefer to have fewer bike parking spaces.

Morris noted when he was at the hospital for a site visit, he parked a block away and when walking Catalina, he saw cars lined up, and the people getting out of their cars were walking down the street to the walkway. Are we are unwilling to do the facilities that are required to support the hospital? He would hate to see expansion into the green area for parking. Eventually he believes there is going to have to be some building (parking garage) to support what goes on at the hospital. It will be a cost of doing business at the hospital. Dotterrer concurred.

Kistler wondered if the architect put a scale on the parking lot to see if there is any wiggle room at the top side of the bank. Covey said there does not seem to be.

McLaughlin said removal of the fence would open up the campus feel of the hospital. The fence presents a barrier. The original mediation agreement was that there would be no fence.

COMMISSIONERS' DISCUSSION AND MOTION
Briggs said with regard to Condition 2 (sidewalk), she is inclined to go along with Staff because our public institutions need to set a good example for the rest of the city. Swales agreed.

Hanson does not think a sidewalk is needed.

Morris would like to see a sidewalk, but he is not sure it needs to be five feet wide.

KenCairn would like to give them the option of exploring the opportunity to get a sidewalk up high. There may not be room, but there may be some other ways to do it. Instead of cutting in a five foot sidewalk and retaining wall, she would rather see a mix of resolutions so there is sidewalk all the way around the facility but it doesn't have to be on-street everywhere.

Briggs wondered, if you get out of your car, how do you get to the sidewalk that is up the bank? KenCairn said there would have to be stairs. She just wants to offer flexibility in getting a sidewalk all the way around so we don't end up with a five foot wall next to a five foot sidewalk.

McLaughlin said the minimum width sidewalk is five feet, but it tight situations, perhaps as narrow as four and one-half feet.

Fields said it is a no-win situation. Unfortunately, there is a lot of traffic. It seems a sidewalk needs to be provided. He believes it is an issue of people unloading from their cars. The longer we leave the trees, the worse it will be to remove them later. Replant them now and come up with a good landscaped designed wall. It will make a true street improvement. It is an urban facility that needs urban amenities.

Chapman also believes the architects can come up with attractive landscaping for the steep hillside. If we don't put a sidewalk in we might as well say we are never doing it.

Dotterrer believes the applicants should be allowed to examine a four foot sidewalk.

Briggs moved to continue the meeting until 11:00 p.m. It was seconded and approved.

The Commissioners agreed to remove Condition 4. (retaining trees). They agreed to leave Condition 11 (remove fence) and Condition 10 (bike parking).

Hanson moved to approve Planning Action 2003-154 with the following changes. That Condition 2 is amended to allow for the possibility of a four foot sidewalk if it can be properly engineer. Strike Condition 4. Dotterrer seconded the motion and it was unanimously approved.

OTHER - Hearings Board Assignments
The Hearings Board assignments will remain the same as last year.

ADJOURNMENT - The meeting was adjourned at 11:30 p.m.

End of Document - Back to Top


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