Agendas and Minutes

Tree Commission (View All)

Regular Monthly Meeting

Minutes
Thursday, October 07, 2004

Ashland Tree Commission
Regular Meeting
October 7, 2004
Minutes

I. Call to Order: Chair Ted Loftus called the Ashland Tree Commission meeting to order at 7:02 p.m. on October 7, 2004 at the Siskiyou Room in the Community Development/Engineering Services Building at 51 Winburn Way.
Commissioners Present: Ted Loftus
Bryan Holley
Bryan Nelson
Mary Pritchard
January Jennings
Fred Stockwell
Laurie Sager
Commissioners Absent: None
Council Liaison: Cate Hartzell (absent)
Youth Liaison: None
Staff Present: Maria Harris, Associate Planner
Amy Anderson, Assistant Planner
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II. Approval of Minutes: The following correction was noted for the September 9, 2004 minutes. Page 4, New Items, third paragraph, fifth sentence: Should read "It was noted that there are about a half of a dozen cork trees in Ashland, but the cork tree is not on the Ashland Street tree list. bout half a doze in Ashland." Jennings/Pritchard m/s to approve the minutes of September 9, 2004 with corrections. Voice vote: All AYES, Motion passed. The minutes of September 9, 2004 were approved as corrected.
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III. Welcome Guests & Public Forum:
Kerry KenCairn said she was attending the meeting for the planning application at 116 Lincoln Street. She said the application would be postponed until the November meeting.

There was a discussion of the Japanese Maple brought to the meeting by Loftus.

Amy Anderson, the new Assistant Planner in the Ashland Planning Division, was introduced to the Commission.

Camp Kay of Hardwood Tree Service discussed his concerns regarding the water stress he believes the trees in Ashland are experiencing. There was a discussion of the difference in tree health and water levels in the Willamette Valley versus the Rogue Valley. There was a discussion of the change in the climate and built environment impacting trees. There was discussion of improper water levels and irrigation for trees.

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IV. Public Hearings:
A. PLANNING ACTION 2004-105 is a request for a seven lot Subdivision, Preliminary Plat approval, Conditional Use Permit for an Accessory Residential Unit, and an exception to City of Ashland Street Standards for approximately 1.75 acres of land located at the southwest corner of the intersection of South Mountain Avenue and Prospect Street. The application includes a Tree Removal Permit, as well as a Variance to Off-Street Parking requirements to allow two (2) required off-street parking spaces for the Accessory Residential Unit to be located on an adjacent parcel. Comprehensive Plan Designation: Single Family Residential; Zoning: R-1-10; Assessor's Map #: 39 1E 16 AD; Tax Lots: 3400, 3500 and 3600.
APPLICANT: R & C Investments

A staff report was given describing the project. It was noted the application includes a detailed Tree Protection Plan, and Landscape and Irrigation Plans for the parkrows adjacent to the South Mountain Avenue and Prospect Street frontages. The Tree Protection Plan identifies 62 trees greater than six inches diameter at breast height (dbh), and 19 of those trees as being removed. The site design and Tree Protection Plan were described as focusing on preserving three large cluster of trees situated throughout the site, as well as the four significant trees adjacent to the proposed private driveway. The application includes a request for a Tree Removal Permit to remove three trees greater than 18 inches diameter at breast height (dbh). The three trees include an 18 inch dbh pine on proposed Lot 3, a 20 inch dbh Madrone on proposed Lot 4 and a 24 inch dbh pine on proposed Lot 5. The areas of concern raised by staff were noted as being the proximity of the building envelopes into the driplines of the trees, the impact of street and utility installation on the trees to be preserved, the extent of the fill into the driplines of the trees to be preserved on proposed Lots 6 and 7, and the justification for removal of the 20 inch Madrone on Lot 4.

The Commission received public testimony.

Randall Hopkins, 735 South Mountain. Hopkins noted that the applicant had recently done a project on Beach Street, and began work without tree protection on site as required. Hopkins stated that the applicant has a track record of not following tree protection requirements. He pointed out that the tree protection plan submitted with this application is complicated and expensive in comparison to the Beach Street project, and questioned the likelihood of implementation. Hopkins expressed his concern in that the subject site is not visible from the street, and therefore is difficult for neighbors to monitor tree protection work. He also said he is concerned about implementation of the tree protection plan in the long term if lots are sold individually and developed slowly over time. Hopkins said that the excavation permit for the Beach Street project was issued without the tree protection measures being in place. He questioned the applicant's absence from the meeting, and suggested that in civil proceedings if a party is not present the decision goes in the other parties favor.

Rebecca Reid, 1036 Prospect Street. Reid said that the most important issue is the enforcement of the tree protection plan that is proposed. She agreed with Hopkins in that the lot is not visible. She said she is concerned about compaction around the trees to be preserved - particularly trees in northeast corner of site adjacent to Prospect. She pointed out that the electric lines along Prospect and the pue along western side of the site need to be installed underground. Reid said she is concerned about the Oak tree (#63 - along west line) on her property near the western site boundary, and the impact of installing utility lines on this tree. She suggested the approved tree protection plan measures need to be integrated into the CC&R's. She said this lot has been vacant at least 5 years and maybe longer. She said she has never seen a tree watered, cared for or pruned. She questioned the impact of development on trees that are stressed.

The Tree Commission discussed the proposal. There was discussion of the Tree Protection Plan and acknowledgement that it was a thorough document. The Commission discussed the approach of saving clusters of trees, and recognized that this was a good approach. The Commission discussed the Staff concerns. There was discussion of the building envelopes and the benefit of moving the building footprints out of the dripline of the tree to provide a buffer to the root system and tree canopy. There was a discussion of the 20" Madrone on Lot 4, and agreement that the tree should be retained. There was agreement more information was needed on the utility line location and street construction impacts. It was also noted that extra emphasis needs to be given to this project in monitoring and enforcement of the Tree Protection Plan. There was a discussion of the need for mitigation for the removal of the trees requiring a Tree Removal Plan, and agreement that specifics on the mitigation measures were needed.

The Tree Commission made the following recommendations to the Planning Commission.

Recommendation:
Recommend continuance of project for following reasons:

1. There is insufficient mitigation for the number of trees to be removed. Provide mitigation plan.
2. Support reduction of building envelopes to further protect groves of trees that are very close to building sites, and to provide additional buffering to canopy and root zone.
3. Support conditions 5, 6, 7,10, 11, 12, 14 - 18 related to implementation of Tree Protection Plan.
4. Support staff recommendation that insufficient justification/information is provided for removal of 20" dbh Madrone on Lot 4.
5. Need utility plan to determine conformance with Tree Protection Plan requirements of 18.61.200. Address trees that may be impacted by underground installation of utility lines, including trees on neighboring properties such as Oak near western site boundary
6. Include tree specific watering plan for during construction, and specific direction in CC&R's for watering of trees
7. Include Landscape Architect in all pre-construction conference meetings to insure implementation of Tree Protection Plan.
8. Concerned about impact of new paving of Prospect Street on trees to the north and south of the street - can alternate method be used? (i.e. alternative paving, french drains)

The recommendation was read back to the Tree Commission by Staff. Loftus asked if there were any objections to the recommendation as read. There were no objections and all members acknowledge that there were in agreement with the items as presented.

B. PLANNING ACTION 2004-129 is a request for Outline/Final Plan and Site Review approval for an 8- lot, 16-unit (eight duplexes) multi-family development under the Performance Standards Option for the property located at 116 Lincoln Street. Comprehensive Plan Designation: High Density Multi-Family Residential; Zoning: R-3; Assessor's Map #: 39 1E 10 BC; Tax Lot: 3800.
APPLICANT: Archerd & Dresner, LLC

This action was postponed earlier in the meeting by the applicant's representative.

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V. Action Items
A. Tree of the Year
There was a discussion of running the ballot with the five finalists in the Ashland Daily Tidings. There was agreement that the Commission members should pick the five finalists and email to Staff the following Monday. Then Staff would make writing assignments to Commission members, get the paragraphs for each tree back via email, and prepare the ballot for the newspaper. There was agreement that Stockwell would continue to take photographs of the five finalists.
B. Recommendation for Misc. Concrete Projects
There was a discussion of Nelson's recommendations on the draft Misc. Concrete Project. He suggested mitigating for the removal of the trees by bike shop. On the Granite Street section, it was noted that the trees are back further (incense cedars). There was agreement from the Commission members on the recommendations made by Nelson. It was noted the Tree Commission would like a written response from Public Works when comments are made on the public works projects.
C. Determine Time to Continue Review of Chapter 18.61
There was agreement that it is necessary to have a separate meeting. The date was set for October 21 at 7:00 pm, possibly at Sager's office.
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VI. DISSCUSSION ITEMS
A. Review Draft Design Professional Ordinance Language
There was a discussion of the draft language prepared by staff (see attached). There was agreement that the title of this item should be changed to Landscape Installation Inspection. Under 18.72.020, here was a discussion of how to define "other expert with demonstrable expertise in landscaping." Using "other qualified landscape professional" was suggested. Under 18.72.110.B, it was suggested the inspections should be "site preparation, tree protection and final inspection of plant and irrigation installation. Under 18.72.110.E, the following revision was suggested, "All landscaping plans shall either be irrigated or shall be certified that they can be maintained and survive without artificial supplemental irrigation."
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VII. ITEMS FROM COMMISSIONERS
A. Update and Progress Report on Commissions Goals from Fall 2003
There was a discussion of the goals from 2003, and the perceived progress in addressing the goals by various members of the Commission. It was suggested that in the next month or two the Commission should have another goal setting session. There was a discussion of contributing time outside of the meetings towards working on Commission goals. There was a discussion of if the Commission should limited efforts to reviewing planning actions or expand to educational efforts. There was some disagreement as to whether the 2003 goals have been accomplished. There was a discussion of the Commission as a group moving forward again after the last year of transition. The next year's goal setting was discussed, and there was not interest in using an outside facilitator. There was a discussion of working collectively, or breaking up in smaller groups to accomplish 2005 goals.
B. Liaison Reports
1) Cate Hartzell, City Council
It was noted that Hartzell was not present due to a forum for candidates for office being held at the same time as the meeting.
2) January Jennings, Forest Lands
Jennings said the meeting is next week, and therefore she didn't have anything to report. She asked the Commission for direction on what she was supposed to accomplish by attending the meetings. She said she attends the meetings, but isn't asked to do or say anything. She added that she feels like she is wasting time. There was agreement from the Commission that that Jennings would go to meeting next week, report back, and then discontinue attending meetings.

There was a discussion of a Commission member possibly going to the Parks Commission meetings and other advisory commission meetings such as Historic Commission.

3) Donn Todt, Parks
No report was given.
C. New Items
There was a discussion of determining three species for street trees for use on Lithia Way - as suggested by Don Todt.

It was noted the ISA pamphlets need to be replaced in front office.

D. Current Balance $750
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VII. ADJOURNMENT

End of Document - Back to Top


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