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1000 ECR Architectural Control

From: domainremoved <Steve>
Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2019 14:14:59 -0800

Hi Ray,

I've been thinking about Tuesday's community meeting. My thoughts may or
may not be in line with yours, so just in case here they are:

1. The present issue is the Planning Commission's approval of Architectural
Control for this project. While the residents are most concerned about the
seven redwoods designated for removal, they are but a part of the larger
project. This situation does not appear to be an appeal of a heritage tree
removal request, rather an appeal of a PC decision.

2. The proposed removal of the redwoods on the project site should have
been reviewed by the EQC and their recommendation should have been included
in the PC staff report for Architectural Control. For example the EQC would
take note of the proposal to only plant 9 new trees as mitigation for
removal of seven heritage trees. The Heritage Tree Ordinance requires at
least 14. It is clear from the staff report, some of these trees are
ornamental and some are even in pots. None of these should be counted
towards the required 14 replacement trees. Other tree issues are involved
with this project replacement that should be reviewed by the EQC, a group
that has more expertise on trees than the PC. Some of the ornamental
species in the project plan are discouraged in the current Street Tree
Management Plan.

3. The Specific Plan requires a 15' sidewalk on this ECR frontage. The
project proponents did not present a design that showed how this 15'
sidewalk requirement would be included in their proposal.

4. Does the City employ an engineer who is qualified to evaluate
engineering assumptions and design proposal for projects? The City needs to
address the residents' concern that the staff appears to see its role as
facilitators of the applicant's project. A question posed on Monday's
meeting asking who represents the trees (or the residents who like trees)
should not be considered a throw-away question.

5. The 2:1 ratio on site replacement requirement for heritage trees removed
often runs afoul of limitations on site space available. I suggest that the
requirement be increased to 3 or 4:1. The number that can't be planted on
site should be planted off site on public property, either as street or
park trees with the installation cost subsidized by the City.

I appreciate and support your decision to send this back to square one, to
the EQC for an evaluation and recommendation on the tree removal and tree
replacement plan and then back to the PC. The delay for the applicant is
unfortunate but necessary to insure that Commission review, recommendation
and approval process is followed, is fair and respected. The persistent
idea that developers are favored over concert of residents should be
dispelled by this Council and new City Manager through action. Commission
morale could also be bolstered by demonstrating to all Commissioners that
they do have an important and essential role to play in City governance and
aren't simply parked on commissions to get them out of the way.

No reasonable alternatives for solving this difficult problem at 1000 ECR
should be overlooked.

Steve
Received on Thu Jan 10 2019 - 14:11:54 PST

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