ASHLAND PLANNING COMMISSION
I. CALL TO ORDER:
May 25, 2021
Chair Haywood Norton called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.
A. LUBA decision for PA-T3-2019-00001, 1511 Hwy 99 North
||Bill Molnar, Community Development Director
Maria Harris, Planning Manager
Derek Severson, Senior Planner
Dana Smith, Executive Assistant
Item was added to the agenda under DISCUSSION ITEM
Community Development Director Bill Molnar explained the Housing Capacity Analysis and code revisions for duplexes and accessory residential units went before City Council at their study session on May 17, 2021. First reading of the Wildfire Mitigation Construction Standards went before the City Council meeting on May 18, 2021. Second reading would occur June 1, 2021.
III. PUBLIC FORUM
IV. UNFINISHED BUSINESS
A. Approval of Findings for PA-T1-2021-00141, 599 East Main Street.
Ex Parte Contact
The Commission had no ex parte contact on the matter.
The following changes were made to the Findings:
• Page 6, first full paragraph, added to last sentence, “The Planning Commission concludes that this criterion is satisfied.”
Commissioner Thompson/Pearce m/s to approve the Findings for PA-T1-2021-00141, as amended during this meeting. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
• Page 8, after bulleted items and second full paragraph, add, “The Planning Commission finds that the proposed office use requires ten off-street parking spaces, based on the ratio of one off-street parking space per 500 square feet of general office use found in AMC Table 18.4.3.040 (4,630 square feet/one space per 500 square feet = 9.36 spaces). The Commission finds that the application does not meet the parking requirements because it is a nonconforming development with regard to parking. Nonconforming developments can be altered or expanded pursuant to AMC 18.1.4.040.B where the Conditional Use Permit criteria are met. The Conditional Use Permit criteria are discussed in section 2.4 below.
The Planning Commission further finds that the proposed office use requires one bicycle parking space for every five required automobile spaces and that fifty percent of these spaces must be sheltered as provided in AMC 18.4.3070. In this case, ten automobile spaces are required (4,630 square feet/one space per 500 square feet = 9.36 spaces ) and two bicycle parking spaces are required (10 spaces/one bicycle space per five automobile spaces = 2 spaces). While the site currently has no bicycle parking in place, the applicant has proposed to provide three U-racks for bicycle parking which more than satisfies the requirements. Conditions have been included below to require that bicycle parking be included in the permit submittals and that it be provided on site prior to occupancy.”
• Now page 11, first paragraph, change wording at the end of the sentence to read, “The Planning Commission notes that the application includes a Technical Memo from Sandow Engineering which assesses the trip generation for the previous church use, proposed office use and target retail use using the ITE Trip Generation Manuals, 10th Edition, as illustrated in the table below, and concludes that the proposed office use has less of a trip generation impact to the neighborhood than the target retail use of the zone.”
• Now Page 12, third full paragraph, add wording to read, “The Commission finds that the benefits of preserving and renovating the historic building may be weighed against the generation of traffic and its effect on the surrounding streets that result from the continuing parking non-conformity. With all of things considered, the Commission concludes that the effect of parking and trip generation on the surrounding streets for the proposed office use has a lower impact than the target use as evidenced in Sandow’s Technical Memo, particularly when weighed alongside the benefit of preserving and renovating the historic building.”
B. Approval of Findings for PA-L-2021-00010, Duplex and Accessory Residential Units code amendments.
Commissioner Pearce/Harper m/s to adopt proposed Findings for PA-L-2021-00010, Duplex and Accessory Residential Units code amendments and forward them to City Council with the Planning Commission’s recommendation. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
V. DISCUSSION ITEM
A. LUBA decision for PA-T3-2019-00001, 1511 Hwy 99 North
Mr. Molnar had read through the decision and highlighted points made by LUBA. LUBA reversed the City’s opinion. There were three assignment’s error. The first one was the critical one where LUBA reversed the decision. He was not sure if the other two would have caused a reversal. He provided a presentation (see attached
) on the assignments of error in LUBA No. 2021-009 Final Opinion and Order:
• “Grand Terrace” Annexation – proposed annexation area
• 1St Assignment of Error – Improperly approved an Exception
An annexation may be approved if the proposed request for annexation conforms, or can be made to conform through the imposition of conditions, with all of the following approval criteria:
Public Facilities Chapter 18.4.6 applies to all new development, including projects subject to Land Division (Subdivision or Partition) approval and developments subject to Site Design Review, where public facility improvements are required.
The application, as part of annexation, required compliance with city street standards. The applicant proposed having a significant portion of the sidewalk construction at curbside and not separated from the curb by a park row. It was proposed to deal with some constrictive right of way issues. During the planning commission discussion at that time, it was deemed more appropriate to be taken up at the time development was proposed. During the City Council decision, an exception to the design standards to allow curbside sidewalk was available through the annexation process. LUBA focused on these areas of the annexation standard. With annexation, there was not really an allowance to deviate. It needed to meet the requirement, or the city needed to condition the annexation approval, so the proposal met them. LUBA noted the Public Facilities Chapter 18.4.6 where the criteria for exception to street standards was contained and it stated the public facilities chapter applied to all new development including projects subject to land division approval and developments subject to site design review. Since this was an annexation, there was no development or land division, and no site review that would allow an exception. LUBA did not provide guidance or make a decision if a development was proposed concurrently with an annexation whether an exception procedure could be used.
• 2nd Assignment of Error – Contiguity Issue (LUBA did not rule on this issue)
- Boundaries….the Staff Advisor may include other parcels of property in the proposed annexation to make a boundary extension more logical and to avoid parcels of land which are not incorporated but are partially or wholly surrounded by the City.
Portions of the ODOT property and the railroad were included for the purposes of providing contiguity and an orderly city boundary. The Findings spoke to the purpose of making the boundary extension more logical and was absent in terms of addressing the second part that avoided parcels of land which were not incorporated but were partially or wholly surrounded by the city. LUBA was also concerned about the City’s use of parcels and lot in the annexation standards. Under Oregon state law a parcel is a property created by a land partition and a lot was a property created through a subdivision. It showed inconsistency in the code. The City code definition of lot included a piece of land that could be created through partition or parcels or lots could be used similarly.
• 3rd Assignment of Error – Not supported by substantial evidence (LUBA did not rule on this issue)
- Pedestrian and bicycle destinations from the project shall be determined and the safe and accessible pedestrian and bicycle facilities serving those destinations shall be indicated.
- “Speed study not a condition nor does it ensure a reduction in sped.” -Appellant
The City’s findings that transportation was adequate was not supported by substantial evidence. Mr. Molnar was not sure how LUBA would have ruled on that. The appellants arguments were reasonable. They did point out there were a couple parts of the city’s standards that could be discretionary and potentially difficult to provide direction to an applicant. LUBA noted the speed study was not a condition nor would it necessarily ensure a reduction in speed.
Mr. Molnar recommended adding an item to a future City Council agenda to get direction from Council. There were inconsistencies in the code that would affect future annexations. The applicant still wanted to move forward with the annexation. The Commission discussed the need to review the annexation code and the transportation section and was interested in updating the code.
Meeting adjourned at 8:01 p.m.
Dana Smith, Executive Assistant