CITY PLANNING DIVISION
STATEMENT OF OFFICIAL ACTION
FINDINGS AND DETERMINATION OF THE ZONING ADMINISTRATOR
CASE NUMBER: Variance 08VAR-018
DESCRIPTION: TRACT NO. 2385 EX OF ST LOT 181
ZONING DISTRICT: R-1 (Single Family Residential) District
STATUS: Exempt (Single-Family Residential)
APPLICANT: Ernest Mack
OWNER: Jessica Sullivan
PRIOR PERMITS: None
REQUEST: The applicant requests two (2) side yard setback modifications to allow minor additions to continue the line of the existing one-story, single-family residential building.
· Allow the continuation of a non-conforming side yard setback of 5’-3” along the north side of the property. The proposed addition is 15’-6” in length and will continue the line of the existing structure.
· Allow the continuation of a non-conforming side yard setback of 5’-6” along the south side of the property. The proposed addition is 9’-0” in length and will continue the line of the existing structure.
Pursuant to section 9.04.20.10.030 (d)(3) of the SMMC, the applicant may request a variance to allow a modification to yard setbacks on parcels with a 12.5 foot grade differential or more, as measured from any point on the front parcel line to any point on the rear parcel line. The subject property has a slope differential of approximately 47 feet from front to rear parcel lines.
CEQA STATUS: The project is categorically exempt from the provisions of California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) pursuant to Section 15305, Class 5 of the State Implementation Guidelines in that the project involves a minor alteration in land use involving a setback variance not resulting in the creation of any new parcel.
ZONING ADMINISTRATOR ACTION
December 9, 2008
Public Hearing Date.
December 30, 2008
Approved based on findings and subject to conditions.
Denied based on findings.
Effective Date Of Action If Not Appealed:
January 14, 2009
January 14, 2010
Length Of Any Possible Extension:
(a) There are special circumstances or exceptional characteristics applicable to the property involved, including size, shape, topography, location, or surroundings, or to the intended use or development of the property that do not apply to other properties in the vicinity under an identical zoning classification. Specifically, the subject parcel has an approximate 47-foot grade differential from the front to rear property lines. This grade differential restricts development and use of the rear yard due to the downward slope located in the rear half of the lot that limits the amount of buildable area and usable outdoor open space adjacent to the rear of the existing building.
(b) The granting of such variance will not be detrimental nor injurious to the property or improvements in the general vicinity and district in which the property is located in that the minor additions will continue the line of the existing building and preserve the existing side yard setback dimensions. The addition on the north side of the property will extend the existing building wall by 15’-6” and will provide space for a laundry, hallway, and closet. The addition on the south side of the property will extend the existing building wall by 9’-0” and will provide space for a master bathroom. Both spaces have limited glazing surfaces and are considered “secondary spaces” in which the activities within these spaces would not impose on the privacy of adjacent properties. Also, the additions will continue the same height of the existing building and will not increase the overall scale or building mass of the existing structure.
(c) The strict application of the provisions of this Chapter would result in practical difficulties or unnecessary hardships, not including economic difficulties or economic hardships in that the property has constraints on development due to the change in grade that limits the location of any additions to the existing structure. The rear half of the lot is also limited in the amount of usable open space due to the grade differential. Side yard setback standards would require both additions to be located closer to the center of the property, further reducing the amount of existing usable open space adjacent to the rear side of the building. An unnecessary hardship is created due to this lack of buildable area.
(d) The granting of such variance will not be contrary to or in conflict with the general purposes and intent of this Chapter, nor to the goals, objectives, and policies of the General Plan. Specifically, section 9.04.20.10.030 (d)(3) of the SMMC allows for a modification to yard setbacks on parcels with a 12.5 foot grade differential or more, as measured from any point on the front parcel line to any point on the rear parcel line. The development standards of the R-1 zoning district serve to implement the goals and policies of the General Plan and regulate height, parcel coverage, setbacks, parking, and other aspects of design to ensure compatibility with the existing neighborhood. Objective 1.10 and Policy 1.10.1 of the Land Use Element of the General Plan encourages the expansion of residential land uses while protecting the scale and character of existing neighborhoods. The proposed project involves two minor housing additions that, except as established by this application, comply with all applicable development standards.
(e) The variance would not impair the integrity and character of the district in which it is to be located in that the proposed side yard setbacks for both additions are consistent with the amount of setback currently provided by the existing structure. In addition, the structure will remain as a one-story structure in a neighborhood that is characterized by both one and two-story buildings. The City’s Zoning Ordinance permits two-story buildings with a maximum height of 28-feet from average natural grade in the R-1 district. The proposed additions will match the existing building height of 18’-4” as measured from the middle average natural grade segment and is therefore consistent with the scale and character of the neighborhood.
(f) The subject site is physically suitable for the proposed setback variance in that the site is located within an urbanized area and is already improved with a single-family residential structure. Although the property is affected by varied slope conditions, the existing buildable areas can accommodate the structure on the parcel.
(g) There are adequate provisions for water, sanitation, and public utilities and services to ensure that the proposed variances would not be detrimental to public health and safety in that the subject property is located within a developed urbanized environment that is adequately served by existing infrastructure, public utilities and services. It is not anticipated that approval of the subject application will create a need for additional utilities or services.
There will be
adequate provisions for public access to serve the subject variance proposals
in that the subject property is served by
(i) The strict application of the provisions of this Chapter would result in unreasonable deprivation of the use or enjoyment of the property in that due to existing parcel constraints and the location of existing improvements, practical use or enjoyment of the subject parcel would not be possible.
CONDITIONS OF APPROVAL
1. This determination shall not become effective for a period of fourteen days from the determination date or, if appealed, until a final determination has been made on the appeal.
2. This approval applies to both side yard setback variance requests as shown on the plans dated September 23, 2008 and subject to any special conditions. Minor amendments to the plans shall be subject to approval by the Zoning Administrator.
allowances granted by this entitlement, the applicant shall comply with all
other applicable provisions of Article IX, Chapter 9 of the Santa Monica
Municipal Code and all other pertinent ordinances and General Plan policies of
the City of
4. This approval shall expire twelve (12) months from the effective date, unless, in the case of a new development, a building permit has been obtained, or in the case of a change of use, a business license has been issued and the use is in operation prior to the expiration date. This approval shall also expire if the building permit expires or if the rights granted under this approval are not exercised within one year of the earliest to occur of the following: issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy or, if no Certificate of Occupancy is required, the last required final inspection for new construction. Upon the written request from the applicant, prior to expiration, the Zoning Administrator may extend this period up to an additional one year for residential projects. Applicant is on notice that extensions may not be granted if development standards, the development process, or other requirements relevant to the project have changed since project approval.
5. Within ten (10) days of transmittal of this Statement of Official Action, the project applicant shall sign a copy of the determination and return the document to the City Planning Division. The applicant’s signature constitutes acceptance of the conditions of approval and understanding that failure to comply with such conditions shall constitute grounds for potential revocation.
This decision of the Zoning Administrator may be appealed
to the Planning Commission during a 14 calendar day appeal period following
the decision date. Such an appeal may
be made by filing an official appeal form with the City Planning Division,
I hereby certify that this Statement of Official Action
accurately reflects the final determination of the Zoning Administrator of
the City of
December 30, 2008
Amanda Schachter Date
Acknowledgement by Permit Holder
I agree to the above conditions of approval and acknowledge that failure to comply with any and all conditions shall constitute grounds for potential revocation of the permit approval.
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