New Problem Project in Ocean Beach? Check Out 4741 Del Mar

by on October 21, 2016 · 1 comment

in Culture, Environment, History, Ocean Beach


Photo montage by Kathy Blavatt

OB Planning Board Approved Project Plans 2 Years Ago – But Local Residents Say What’s Being Built Is Different

Ocean Beach residents are concerned about another construction project that appears to be breaking the 30-foot height limit. They’re also afraid that the actual construction does not conform to the original plans that were submitted and approved by the city and OB planners.

This one is in south OB, at 4741 Del Mar Avenue. Locals have observed that the builders have added a solid deck wall above the house roof that is different from the approved plans the showed it below the roof line. Also, the roof line may also be above the 30 foot limit.

Some of these residents have contacted the OB Planning Board about the project and requested that they check out what is being constructed compared with the plans.


Design drawings of 4741 Del Mar.

Just about two years ago exactly, the OB Planning Board approved the project as presented – but it was a close vote, 7 to 5.

This is our report from November 6, 2014.:

The first action item was an application to demolish an existing house and garage at 4741 Del Mar Avenue and replace them with a 2-story single-family residence with 5 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms, and a detached garage.


House that was demolished at 4741 Del Mar.

John Ambert, chair of the Project Review Committee, explained that when his sub-committee met in October with the applicant and his architect, they felt it “wasn’t quite in step with the Community Plan in terms of bulk and scale, and asked them to make improvements.”  The “them” was Jason Ford – the owner-builder – and Cavanaugh, the architect.

Wednesday night, Ford and Cavanugh presented new drawings that they said displayed the improvements, a change from the boxy roof design and a sloping back of the second story.  The house still has its original footprint at 3137 square feet. The garage and storage is another 600 square feet of space. Most of the back will be decking.


Artist rendering of the 2-story house at 4941 Del Mar, whose plans were approved by the OB Planning Board, 11/5/14

When the Board discussed the project, it was clear there were differences. Tom Gawronski, former chair, stated:

“We’ve consistently asked people to use setbacks for building second stories. This building is in great conflict with the Community Plan.”

Ambert responded by saying originally the design of the building went straight up 30 feet, and the new design is at 20 feet and sloping.  He added that the new design changed the way the building meets the street for the good.


Applicant Jason Ford – behind diagrams – showing the difference in “before” and “after” designs in Nov. 2014.

There was a discussion whether that block and area of OB had similar houses in terms of bulk and scale.  Pete Ruscitti, chair, summarized:

“There’s a varied architectural style on that block. The builder has come a long way. … This [building] is really borderline – but you’ve met the code and worked with us a lot,” speaking to the applicant.

Finally a motion was made by Seth Connolly to approve the project “as presented”, and seconded by newcomer Dan Dennison. The motion passed, but it was a close vote, with 7 voting to approve and 5 voting not to approve.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Christo October 21, 2016 at 2:09 pm

Ongoing issues beyond design with this place.

1) Illegal “No Parking” signs out for the last month.
2) Construction going on past 7pm (including last night).
3) Construction going on on Sundays.
4) Construction workers blaring music with derogatory lyrics and cuss words within earshot of 4 families of young children who live within 4 houses.



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