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Current Council Agenda and Past Meeting Information

CITY COUNCIL AGENDA ITEM NO. 17

Meeting Date: May 27, 2008

Subject/Title: (1) Adopt a resolution adopting a Mitigated Negative Declaration; and (2) Adopt a resolution approving the appeal of and approving an amendment to the design review (DR 05-27) for the City Block retail center to allow for a left-in turn pocket for westbound traffic at the main Balfour Road entrance. The center is located at the southwest corner of the intersection of Griffith Lane and Balfour Road.

Prepared by: Debbie Hill, Associate Planner

Submitted by: Casey McCann, Interim Community Development Director


RECOMMENDATION
Staff recommends that the City Council: (1) adopt a resolution adopting the Mitigated Negative Declaration; and (2) adopt a resolution approving the appeal of and approving an amendment to a design review (DR 05-27) for the City Block retail center to allow for an unsignalized left-in turn pocket for westbound traffic at the main Balfour Road entrance.

PREVIOUS ACTIONS
• Planning Commission approval of RZ 06-03 and DR 05-27 on March 21, 2006, for the 49,112 square foot City Block retail shopping center.
• City Council approval of RZ 06-03 and mitigated negative declaration on April 25, 2006.
• Planning Commission denial of a design review amendment application for a full access signalized intersection on March 6, 2007.
• City Council denial of an appeal, upholding the Planning Commission’s denial on the full access signalized intersection on May 22, 2007, and referring any alternative access designs to the Planning Commission for consideration.
• Planning Commission hearing on November 20, 2007, considering the request for a left-in turn pocket. No action was taken as a majority vote could not be obtained and one Commissioner was absent. Pursuant to Council Policy 110-1, the item was automatically added to a future agenda.
• Planning Commission hearing on January 15, 2008, effectively denying an amendment to the design review to allow for a left-in turn pocket for westbound traffic at the main Balfour Road entrance.
• City Council hearing on February 26, 2008, on an appeal filed by Matt Ellison of K & E Properties of the Planning Commission’s effective denial of the design review amendment for a left-in turn pocket and directing staff to return with the required environmental document and approval resolution.

BACKGROUND
On February 26, 2008, the City Council held a public hearing on an appeal filed by Matt Ellison of K & E Properties of the Planning Commission’s effective denial of a requested design review amendment for an unsignalized left-in turn pocket for westbound traffic at the main entrance to the City Block project along Balfour Road. The Council direction was to approve the appeal.

In order for the project to be approved, the required environmental document must be prepared in conformance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Accordingly, staff has prepared a mitigated negative declaration for Council adoption. In addition, the required approval resolution has also been prepared for this amendment.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION
The project includes the adoption of a mitigated negative declaration and proposed installation of an unsignalized 100-foot long left-turn pocket on Balfour Road to provide direct access for westbound traffic into the main entrance to the City Block retail development.

ENVIRONMENTAL DETERMINATION
An Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration were prepared for this project and are attached. All mitigation measures have been incorporated into the conditions of approval for this project.

ANALYSIS
At the City Council meeting of February 26, 2008, the City Council approved the appeal filed by Matt Ellison of K & E Properties of the Planning Commission’s effective denial of a unsignalized left-in turn pocket for westbound traffic at the main entrance of the City Block project along Balfour Road. Since the staff recommendation to the Planning Commission had been for denial of the project, no environmental documentation was required. Therefore, in order to be in compliance with CEQA, staff has prepared the necessary mitigated negative declaration for Council adoption. All mitigation measures have been included as conditions of approval in the accompanying resolution.

Once the mitigated negative declaration and approval resolution have been approved by the City Council, the developer will be able to move forward with construction documents for the project.

FISCAL IMPACT
The applicant paid the required $122 appeal fee. No other fiscal impacts are anticipated with this project.


Attachments:
1. City Council resolution adopting the mitigated negative declaration
2. City Council resolution approving the appeal
3. Minutes from the City Council meeting of February 26, 2008
4. Mitigated Negative Declaration

CITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION NO.

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF BRENTWOOD ADOPTING A MITIGATED NEGATIVE DECLARATION FOR AN UNSIGNALIZED LEFT-IN TURN POCKET FOR WESTBOUND TRAFFIC AT THE MAIN PROJECT ENTRANCE ON BALFOUR ROAD TO THE CITY BLOCK DEVELOPMENT. THE CITY BLOCK PROJECT IS LOCATED AT THE SOUTHWEST INTERSECTION OF GRIFFITH LANE AND BALFOUR ROAD, WEST OF THE IN-SHAPE CITY FITNESS CENTER.

WHEREAS, K & E Properties has requested that the City adopt a Mitigated Negative Declaration for an unsignalized left-in turn pocket for westbound traffic at the main project entrance on Balfour Road to the City Block development, located at the southwest corner of the intersection of Griffith Lane and Balfour Road, west of the In-Shape City fitness center; and

WHEREAS, the proposed project information was referred to various public utility companies, public districts and pertinent departments for review and recommendations; and

WHEREAS, an Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration were prepared for this project in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and are considered a part of this review and approval process; and

WHEREAS, the Mitigated Negative Declaration identifies less than significant environmental effects associated with the proposed project which can be feasibly mitigated or avoided and these project measures are included in the project conditions of approval and will ensure that the impacts identified are mitigated to a less than significant level; and

WHEREAS, the availability of said environmental document for the minimum 20-day public review and comment period was begun on May 7, 2008, and ended on May 27, 2008; and

WHEREAS, the City Council of the City of Brentwood considered this Mitigated Negative Declaration and the accompanying Mitigation Monitoring Plan at a public hearing at its regular meeting of May 27, 2008, and considered the staff report, all accompanying information, and testimony received from the applicant and other interested parties.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that:

1. The City Council has reviewed and considered the information contained in the Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration and all oral testimony and written comments received.

2. Based upon the Mitigated Negative Declaration and comments and testimony received, the City Council hereby finds that there is no substantial evidence that the left-in turn pocket project, as mitigated, will have a significant effect on the environment.

3. The City Council hereby adopts the Mitigated Negative Declaration and the Mitigation Monitoring Program attached to the staff report.

4. The City is the custodian of the documents and other material which constitute the record of proceedings upon which this decision is based, which documents and other materials are located at the City of Brentwood, Community Development Department, 104 Oak Street, CA 94513.

PASSED by the City Council of the City of Brentwood at its regular meeting of May 27, 2008, by the following vote:

CITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION NO.

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF BRENTWOOD APPROVING AN APPEAL FILED BY MATT ELLISON OF K & E PROPERTIES OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION’S EFFECTIVE DENIAL AND APPROVAL OF AN AMENDMENT TO A DESIGN REVIEW (DR 05-27) FOR THE CITY BLOCK COMMERCIAL CENTER TO INCORPORATE A LEFT-TURN POCKET FOR WESTBOUND TRAFFIC ALONG BALFOUR ROAD INTO THE MAIN PROJECT ENTRANCE. THE CITY BLOCK CENTER IS GENERALLY LOCATED AT THE SOUTHWEST CORNER OF THE INTERSECTION OF BALFOUR ROAD AND GRIFFITH LANE, WEST OF THE IN-SHAPE CITY FITNESS CENTER (APN 010-110-014).

WHEREAS, the Planning Commission considered and approved Design Review 05-27 by a 4-0-1 vote for the City Block project on March 21, 2006 by Resolution No. 06-17; and

WHEREAS, Matt Ellison, the applicant, filed an amendment to Design Review 05-27 on November 6, 2006, requesting a full signalized access intersection for this project; and

WHEREAS, the Planning Commission effectively denied the amendment to Design Review 05-27 on March 6, 2007; and

WHEREAS, Matt Ellison filed an appeal of the Planning Commission’s denial decision on the signalized intersection on March 29, 2007; and

WHEREAS, the City Council held a public hearing on the appeal on May 22, 2007, and voted to deny the appeal, thereby upholding the Planning Commission action, and referred any alternative design solutions to the Planning Commission for consideration; and

WHEREAS, Matt Ellison has submitted an amendment showing an alternative design incorporating a left-turn pocket into the main entrance of the City Block development for westbound traffic along Balfour Road; and

WHEREAS, the Planning Commission effectively denied the amendment to Design Review 05-27 on January 15, 2008; and

WHEREAS, Matt Ellison of K&E Properties filed an appeal of the Planning Commission’s denial of the requested design review amendment on January 23, 2008; and

WHEREAS, the City Council set the date of February 26, 2008, for the public hearing on the appeal at their meeting of February 12, 2008; and

WHEREAS, a Notice of Public Hearing was distributed to all property owners of record within 300 feet of the project site and published in the Brentwood Press on February 15, 2008, in accordance with City policies and Government Code Section 65090; and

WHEREAS, the City Council of the City of Brentwood held a public hearing on this amendment at its regular meeting of February 26, 2008, considered the staff report, supporting documents, public testimony, and all appropriate information that has been submitted with the proposed project, and voted to direct staff to prepare the required environmental document in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act and return to the Council with an approval resolution.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the City Council of the City of Brentwood:

A. Hereby finds that:

1. The inclusion of a left-turn pocket for westbound traffic along Balfour Road into the main entrance of the City Block project will create a well-composed urban design, harmoniously related to other facilities in the immediate area and to the total setting as seen from key vantage points in the community as the project would enhance access to the City Block project by providing direct access for westbound vehicular traffic along Balfour Road.

2. The proposed left-turn pocket into the City Block development would be of a quality and character appropriate to, and serving to protect the value of, private and public investments in the immediate area as the removal of landscaping and trees will be mitigated by enhancing the landscaping in other areas of the median.

3. The City Block development currently has inadequate access to the development through the existing driveways along Balfour Road and Griffith Lane; therefore, a left-turn pocket into the center for westbound traffic along Balfour Road is necessary.

4. Left-turn access directly into the City Block commercial project for westbound traffic on Balfour Road is conducive to an orderly, attractive, efficient and harmonious development.

5. Left-turn access directly into the City Block commercial development will ameliorate safety issues at In-Shape by decreasing the number of vehicles accessing the City Block development through the In-Shape parking lot and at Rosegate Avenue by decreasing the number of vehicular u-turn movements at that intersection.

6. The proposed left-turn access would not have an adverse environmental effect on adjacent development by reason of potential conflicts with traffic based upon the adopted Mitigated Negative Declaration prepared for this project which references the independent traffic analysis prepared by Fehr and Peers dated August 24, 2007.

B. Hereby approves the appeal filed by Matt Ellison reversing the effective denial of the Planning Commission and approves the amendment to Design Review 05-27, to allow for a left-turn pocket for westbound traffic along Balfour Road into the main project entrance at Balfour Road, subject to the following conditions and mitigation measures:

1. The developer shall supplement the landscaping within the remaining median within Balfour Road with additional trees, shrubs and groundcover prior to the installation of the median alterations. The intent is to replace the landscaping that is being removed by placing it in other locations within the median. The developer shall submit landscape plans showing this supplementation for review and approval by the Director of Public Works/City Engineer and the Community Development Director prior to issuance of any permit for the installation of the left-in turn lane in the median.

2. To prevent improper handling and storage of hazardous materials or accidents that could result in spills, exposing workers, the public, or the environment to hazardous materials, the project proponent will:

• Implement a Stormwater Prevention and Control Plan (SPCP) for construction activities. At a minimum, the plan will include the following standard operating procedures for spill prevention, hazard assessment, spill prevention and containment, emergency response procedures, and closing the spill incident.

• Before construction begins, site workers will be trained to recognize and respond to spills in accordance with the SPCP plan and which authorities to contact. Construction crews will have an emergency spill kit containing absorbent booms and pads, personal protective equipment, and emergency response guidance.

• Construction equipment will be maintained and kept in operating condition to reduce the likelihood of line breaks and leakage. Any vehicles with chronic or continuous leaks will be removed form the construction site and repaired before being returned to operation.

• Absorbent material or drip pans will be placed underneath vehicles during equipment maintenance or refueling. Refueling will take place only in designated areas. Any fluids drained from equipment will be collected in leak proof containers and taken to an appropriate disposal or recycling facility.

• Human waste at the construction area will be disinfected. Portable chemical toilets will be used. The toilets will not be placed near environmentally sensitive areas. A commercial vendor will maintain the self-contained chemical toilets in good working order to ensure that there are no leaks and will pump the toilets as necessary to prevent overflow. The vendor will be responsible for off-site disposal of the wastes.

• All hazardous waste generated if a spill occurs during construction will be disposed of according to appropriate State and Federal regulations. The appropriate disposal method will depend on the type of waste generated. Waste oils and other wastes considered hazardous in California will be transported by a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)-certified treatment, storage, and disposal facility and disposed at a Class I hazardous waste landfill.

• Contractors will receive training regarding the proper handling and/or storage of potential fire hazards, potential ignition sources (such as smoking or sparking equipment), and appropriate types of fire protection equipment.

• Street replacement activities will occur within city streets where underground utilities such as sewer, gas, and electrical lines are located. Construction activities could rupture any of these lines, resulting in losses of utility service or a release of sewage or storm water, and the collateral public hazards with these losses or releases. The City of Brentwood will identify all utilities prior to the beginning of construction using utility locator services.

3. Construction activities shall be limited to the hours of 7am-to-7pm on weekdays and 9am-to-5pm on Saturdays. Construction shall be prohibited on Sundays and City holidays. These criteria shall be included in the project plans submitted by the Applicant/Developer for review and approval by the Community Development Department prior to the issuance of permits. Exceptions to allow expanded construction activities shall be reviewed on a case-by-case basis as determined by the Chief Building Official.

4. All construction equipment shall use properly operating mufflers, and combustion equipment such as pumps or generators shall not be allowed to operate within 500 feet of any occupied residence during construction hours, unless the equipment is surrounded by a noise protection barrier acceptable to the Community Development Department. These criteria shall be included in the project plan submitted by the Applicant/Developer for review and approval by the Community Development Department prior to issuance of permits.

5. The developer shall modify the northbound approach of the Balfour Road/Griffith Lane intersection to provide dual left-turn lanes, a through lane and a right-turn only lane to the satisfaction of the Director of Public Works/City Engineer the timing of which shall be in conjunction with the left-turn improvements.

6. The developer shall increase the length of the eastbound left-turn pocket by an additional 75 feet to the satisfaction of the Director of Public Works/City Engineer the timing of which shall be in conjunction with the left-turn improvements.

7. The developer shall make modifications to the landscape median and irrigation to provide safe sight distance for the addition of the left-turn lane to the satisfaction of the Director of Public Works/City Engineer and the Community Development Director the timing of which shall be in conjunction with the left-turn improvements.

8. The developer shall retime the traffic signal at the Balfour Road/Griffith Lane intersection in response to striping changes and traffic volume changes to the satisfaction of the Director of Public Works/City Engineer the timing of which shall be in conjunction with the left-turn improvements.

9. The developer shall modify the traffic signal, striping and signing as needed for the Balfour Road/Griffith Lane intersection as recommended in the Fehr and Peers Balfour Road Left-Turn Access Evaluation – City Block to the satisfaction of the Director of Public Works/City Engineer the timing of which shall be in conjunction with the left-turn improvements.

10. The developer shall have a Registered Civil or Traffic Engineer with Fehr & Peers sign the following statement on the improvement plans for the left turn pocket from Balfour Road into the project and for the Balfour Road/Griffith Lane intersection modification plan: “This plan has been reviewed for conformity with the recommendations in the Balfour Road Left-Turn Access Evaluation – City Block report dated August 24, 2007, prepared by Fehr & Peers Transportation Consultants and the undersigned has determined that the plan is consistent with the recommendations” to the satisfaction of the Director of Public Works/City Engineer.

11. All of the above improvements shall be done at no cost to the City including design, construction and permitting.

C. Design Review 05-27, as approved and previously amended, remains in full force and effect.

PASSED by the City Council of the City of Brentwood at its regular meeting of May 27, 2008, by the following vote:
 
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