OB Planning Board Approves 2 Projects, Sets Election for March 6

by on February 8, 2019 · 5 comments

in Ocean Beach

This is Part 2 of a report on the Wednesday, Feb. 6 meeting of the OB Planning Board (Here’s Part 1.)

The Board approved 2 projects, one on Saratoga and the other on Narragansett, approved Dirty Birds application for an alcohol license but with a condition that they prohibit alcohol sales after 10 pm (See Part 1 and comment), and set their annual elections for March 6.

There was also a presentation about Transit Priority Areas and the push to allow multi-unit housing in those areas (OB is not in one – yet).

Also, right off the bat, the OB planners need to be congratulated for bowing to requests to have name plates for board members, to have the OB Planning Area map up and to generally make efforts to not only provide a more audience-friendly presentation, but to increase attendance at their meetings.

Not only were there name plates of the individuals representing the 7 different planning districts, there was a map, the banner marking the board’s 40th anniversary, and board member Dan Dennison working a projector displaying various construction maps and drawings. And in the recent past, there’s also been applause-winning moves to notify local neighborhoods in OB when projects are coming before the board. Is this all a sign of Chair Andrea Schlageter’s leadership and / or a realization by enough board members more had to be done?

Schlageter got the meeting off and – noticing there were not any political representatives present (not even from Jen Campbell’s office) – invited the owners of the two projects to give presentations in turn.

5026 Saratoga

Front house used as a STVR.

The first project is a 3-story residence planned for 5026 Saratoga. The Coastal Development Permit (CDP) includes the construction of a garage addition, and the construction of a 2-story residence above the garage for 913 square feet, with an existing detached residence on the site.

The owner says he’ll live in the new residence and continue to rent out the front unit as a short-term vacation rental – which he  has been very upfront about. It’s an old house, built in 1938 and will not be touched by the new construction. The Project Review Committee approved the project on December 19 to go before full board. Here’s our report from 12/20/18.

Most of the issues had been resolved. Four parking spaces are required, and they will be in tandem. The floor-area-ratio is 0.7, which meets the OB Community Plan’s requirement. The owner said the garage will be the largest structure.

A number of other issues were raised by vice-chair Kevin Hastings. He found the planned upstairs balcony was only 6 inches from the property line, and he recommended moving the railing back 3 feet to comply with the code.

Hastings also had a concern with installing a railing on the roof. He said the roof line is at 27 feet 10 inches and there wasn’t enough height to put in a railing, for safety reasons, without going over the 30 foot limit. These are building code issues, he said.

There was a motion and second to approve the project, yet Hastings wanted more discussion or at least amend the motion to include language “contingent on the owner to meet the following building code violations …” and then list them.

Member Richard Aguirre wanted to push ahead and approve it, without giving the builder / owner any more hassle than he’s already had. But Hastings insisted these were building code issues and it’s up to the Board to ensure buildings coming into OB meet the  requirements of the OB Community Plan. “It’s up to us – that’s why we’re here.” But then he mused, “I don’t trust the city to catch these things.”

He added, “The city is not enforcing the building codes, but I question whether it’s our job to make the building code inspector’s job.”

Without any real discussion on the issues raised, the codes were added as contingents, and the board approved the project by a vote of 9 to 2.


5018 Narragansett

The second project was an application for a process 3 CDP for the demolition and remodel of 2 single-story units and the addition of a second story on each unit. There are plans for roof decks and 4 parking spaces in a 2-car garage and tandem spaces.

This project was also punted to the full board by the initial review committee on Dec. 19th. Here’s our report

The FAR on the project is 0.7 and the height is 29 feet and some inches, and will have 4 tandem parking spaces. It’s to be a 2-bedroom residences. The owner promised to be living in one and rent out the other as a long-term rental. There didn’t appear to be any outstanding issues, and the board easily approved it 11 to 0.

OB Planning Board Election on March 6

The Board’s annual election will be held at the March 6 meeting, but voting starts at 3pm until 7:30pm at the OB Recreation Center, 4726 Santa Monica Avenue. See here for voting details.

Voter Instructions

All members of the community are eligible to vote in the election for the district in which they reside, own property, or own/operate a business in Ocean Beach. It is not necessary to be a registered voter with the state or county government; however, all voters must register in person with a member of the Election Committee. Registration may be completed on Election Day when voting, or prior if requesting a mail-in ballot.

For full instructions on voting and registration, go here and download the Voter Information Package.

The OB Town Council has been gracious enough to offer some time for OB Planning Board candidates at their next meeting, February 27.


{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Judy Collier February 9, 2019 at 8:49 am

Thank you for this informative update. Unfortunately, the map showing those who can participate says it all. Although I live, walk, shop, and participate in the civic life of Ocean Beach, I am 1/3 of a block outside of the planning area. The boundaries should go up to the top of the hill.


Vern February 11, 2019 at 9:34 am

Judy, I’d agree.
Kinda funny thing, whenever I go vote at Peninsula Community Planning Board elections, they check my ID, then a map, then back at my ID, then ask, “where is this?”. This is one of the various endearing components of voting at PCPB elections – like a Barney Fife security measure.
Of course, I can attend OB meetings, but don’t “live” in OB. I walk down the hill nearly everyday to shop, do banking, post office and do a quick surf check in “OB” and, naturally, treat myself to some Azucar, Hugo’s or Poma’s.


micporte February 11, 2019 at 7:34 am

snaps to committee member Hastings for his diligence on code compliance… and his comment that “the city won’t catch it”…the building discrepancies, the developers maneuvers to “draw outside of the lines”… you are so right..the city planning department WON’T catch it, aren’t going to acknowledged codes variances, don’t care, what’s the big deal?… aren’t gong to catch it unless it is caught and waved it their face by concerned citizens… so tiring … wish the planning department , and the developers, would just do their jobs right, without oversight… is that too much to ask of your elected/paid government employees?


Vern February 11, 2019 at 9:24 am

DSD employees don’t appear to happy to be there. Don’t get me wrong, the folks I’ve worked with were very nice people, they just seem to give up at a certain point.
Also, DSD is messy – looks like they have lots of temp staff moving boxes and roll drawings back and forth, upstairs, down stairs, willy nilly.


Frank Gormlie February 11, 2019 at 10:13 am

Received this from Jordan Beane of Jen Campbell’s D2 office: “…wanted to let you know that Seamus from the D2 office was stuck downtown due to the Land Use and Housing meeting that went long but did make it, and stayed, for the vast majority of the meeting. CM Campbell knows how important it is to be at as many community meetings as possible so I wanted to let you know he was there.”
My report was based on his absence when Chair Andrea called for political rep reports, and seeing none, moved on. The post failed to mention that Seamus showed up later.


Leave a Comment

Older Article:

Newer Article: