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REQUEST FOR COUNCIL ACTION 

DATE                                                                                                        ITEM NUMBER   January 11, 2000                                                                                                     5

ORIGINATING                                                                                             CITY MANAGER’S

DEPARTMENT                                 AGENDA ITEM                                                   REVIEW

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT    Public Hearing: Appeal of

(Oshinsky/Leana)                            Planning Commission’s denial of a request to modify the adopted sign criteria for the former Lucky’s shopping center, located at Balfour Road and Walnut Boulevard.  

PREVIOUS ACTIONS:  The City Council and Planning Commission approved this shopping center development in 1997 following several months of hearings and community input.  In February, 1998, the Planning Commission approved a master signage program for the entire center which was reflective of, and complimentary to, the overall center’s architectural design.

RECOMMENDED COUNCIL ACTION:  The City Council has the following options; either

1.      Sustain the action of the Planning Commission by denying the appeal, OR

2.      Overrule the action of the Planning Commission by approving the appeal.

Staff recommends that Council take action, and direct staff to return at the next meeting with a resolution that reflects the Council’s intent.

DISCUSSION:  Albertsons, the new owner of Lucky Stores, recently submitted plans to change the signage at the city’s newest shopping center from the “red lettered” Lucky’s, to the “blue lettered” Albertson’s. Staff was unable to administratively approve the proposed change since the “blue” letters did not comply with the adopted master sign program for this shopping center. Albertson’s had two options; either change the color of the letters to “red,” or request an amendment to the conditional use permit which adopted the master sign program. Albertson’s elected to request a change in the master sign program.

In a 3-2 vote, at its meeting on December 20, 1999, the Planning Commission approved Resolution 99-57 which denied the requested change in the master sign program. The reasoning for the denial included a desire on the part of the Planning Commission to establish and enforce a set of standards for Brentwood that are above the norm of “that’s what we do everywhere else.”  The Commission felt that an enormous amount of time and effort had gone into the review and approval of the “Lucky” center so that its overall design (i.e., architecture, building materials, colors and signage) was consistent and complementary with one another.  The brick veneer used on the buildings’ exterior, the seam metal roofs, the storefront awnings, and the signage on the buildings were all designed with “reddish” hues in order to maintain an overall consistency and relationship among all buildings within the center. 

While options were discussed, including allowing the Albertson’s “blue” but requiring that Savon’s sign remain “red,” the majority of the Commission did not feel that amending the master signage program to allow “blue” lettering was consistent with the intent of the master sign program and the center’s design.

There have been previous issues of  “going against the norm” in Brentwood. Apparently, in the 1980’s McDonalds was denied permission to use their “Golden Arches,” and more recently, Chevron was denied their request to implement their standard “blue and white” building colors. In each case, a better quality design was attained in the City of Brentwood.

If the City Council elects to overturn the action of the Planning Commission, staff would return at the Council’s next meeting with the master signage program in an amended format, and proceed to sign off on Albertson’s sign permit plans immediately.

Attachments:

Planning Commission Resolution 99-57

Approved  Master signage program for the shopping center.

Albertson’s sign plans

City Administration
City of Brentwood City Council
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Brentwood, CA 94513
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E-mail allcouncil@brentwoodca.gov