Chapter 17.54
COMMERCIAL CENTER (ZONE C-4)

17.54.010 Intent and Purpose

The Commercial Center (C-4) Zone is intended to create and preserve certain commercial areas for development as regional retail centers. Typical uses in this zone would include a regional mall, major retail outlets, office complexes, hotels and convention facilities, entertainment centers, and supportive commercial and service uses. The intended market area for goods and services provided in this zone would include the Antelope Valley region as well as users from outside the area. The zone is intended for large-scale commercial uses which are developed pursuant to a comprehensive plan. Although smaller businesses such as auto-related and food service uses are permitted in conjunction with larger developments in this zone, the intent is to achieve unified and cohesive commercial centers rather than allowing piece-meal development or land subdivisions which could preclude future attraction of major users.

17.54.020 Locational Criteria

The C-4 zone designation is appropriately located based upon the following criteria.

A.    The area is occupied or will be occupied by stores and businesses which provide retail sales and services for a wide range of consumer needs, characterized by relatively long-term utility, and a regional service area.

B.    The area is located at the intersection of major arterials or highways and is easily accessible to users throughout the region.

C.    The area is relatively flat, free from environmental constraints and public safety hazards, has physical conditions which can sustain large-scale commercial development, and has adequate infrastructure to support the proposed intensity of uses.

D.    The area contains adequate area to accommodate regional commercial uses (typically forty (40) or more acres within the zone designation).

E.    The location shall be consistent with the General Plan commercial siting criteria and other applicable policies, and the land use designation of RC (Regional Commercial).

17.54.030 Special Development Requirements

A.    In order to meet the intent and purpose of the C-4 zone as stated in PMC 17.54.010, provisions should be made in the planning process for integrated development plans which coordinate the efforts of multiple property owners and discourage piecemeal development. Master planning of the C-4 zoned property is required to avoid development in a manner which would prevent or preclude future development of surrounding land in accordance with General Plan policies for Regional Commercial development. Therefore, development in the C-4 zone shall be processed in accordance with a master plan, which may take one of the following forms:

1.    A Specific Plan or a Planned Development, pursuant to PMC 17.28.040 or 17.28.050.

2.    A comprehensive Conditional Use Permit, pursuant to Chapter 17.22 PMC.

3.    An area plan or other comprehensive development program determined by the Planning Director to meet the intent of the C-4 zone district.

B.    Regardless of the procedure by which a master plan for development is processed in the C-4 zone, such a plan shall address the following considerations:

1.    The area of the master plan should be based on logical planning boundaries and site conditions, rather than limited by individual parcel lines.

2.    The master plan should consider shared access, reciprocal parking, shared open space and amenity areas, the relationship of buildings to each other on adjacent parcels, and other design features to optimize use of the entire planning area as a functional unit.

3.    At a minimum the master plan should address conceptual building locations, heights and footprints; overall circulation, ingress and egress; parking layout; conceptual grading and drainage; and areas for common use.

4.    A statement of intent regarding building design and/or conceptual elevations should be provided to indicate architectural style, product types, form and materials.

5.    For larger projects, design guidelines should be developed to guide future individual building developers and maintain the integrity of the master plan concept.

C.    Future development within the area of a master plan may vary from the provisions of the plan, provided that the proposed project is compatible with the overall plan concept or develops an acceptable alternative master plan.

17.54.040 Uses Permitted Without Planning Approval

The following uses are allowed in the C-4 zone without zoning clearance or other planning approval, except as required by State law.

A.    Field, tree, bush, berry and row crops, including nursery stock, as an interim use, provided that no permanent structures are constructed, and provided that no sludge and/or biosolid material shall be applied to any land as a soil amendment. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 97-1, adopted by City Council August 13, 1997.)

B.    Riding, hiking and bicycle trails and appurtenant facilities.

C.    Storage, temporary, of materials and equipment used in construction of public or private improvements, provided that all such items are stored on the construction site and pose no traffic hazard or other adverse impact on surrounding properties.

D.    Temporary and permanent facilities for detention, retention and conveyance of stormwater runoff.

E.    Small-scale solar energy systems as an accessory use on a lot containing a permitted principal use. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 11-03, adopted by City Council December 7, 2011.)

17.54.050 Uses Permitted Subject to Administrative Approval by the Planning Director

The following uses are permitted in the C-4 zone in conjunction with an approved Master Plan and subject to the provisions of the Zoning Ordinance as specified in this Section pursuant to PMC 17.54.030.

A.    Special Events pursuant to PMC 17.27.030(A).

B.    Temporary Uses pursuant to PMC 17.27.030(B)(1) through (4).

The following uses are permitted in the C-4 zone without an approved Master Plan. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 97-3, adopted by City Council September 10, 1997.)

1.    Minor communication facility pursuant to PMC 17.95.040.

17.54.060 Uses Permitted Subject to Site Plan Review Approval

In conjunction with an approved Master Plan pursuant to PMC 17.54.030, the following uses are permitted in the C-4 zone subject to Site Plan Review approval, except that when such a use is proposed to be established in an existing building and does not constitute a change from the previous use of said building, the requirement for Site Plan Review may be waived by the Planning Director through issuance of a Zoning Clearance, pursuant to PMC 17.26.030.

A.    Retail sale of goods generally characterized by relatively long-term utility or consumption, including:

1.    Apparel and clothing accessories.

2.    Appliances, household.

3.    Art, drafting and graphic supplies.

4.    Books.

5.    Candy and confectionery.

6.    Coffee and tea, specialty stores.

7.    Computers and accessories.

8.    Cosmetics and accessories.

9.    Department stores and general merchandise stores.

10.    Dishes, china, glassware, metalware.

11.    Dry goods and notions.

12.    Farmer’s markets, as defined in PMC 17.16.060(F). (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 98-1, adopted by City Council March 10, 1999.)

13.    Florist.

14.    Fur and leather goods.

15.    Furniture.

16.    Galleries for display and sale of paintings, sculpture, pottery and other works of art.

17.    Gifts.

18.    Hobby, yarn and craft supplies.

19.    Jewelry, precious metals, coin, stamps and other collectibles.

20.    Musical instruments and supplies.

21.    News stands.

22.    Pets and supplies, including grooming as an accessory use.

23.    Photographic equipment, processing and supply.

24.    Prints and frames.

25.    Radio, television, stereo and other audiovisual equipment.

26.    Shoes.

27.    Specialty food sales such as health food, packaged gift food, specialty food items, etc.

28.    Sport and athletic equipment.

29.    Stationery and office supplies.

30.    Toys.

31.    Warehouse retail stores. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 00-01, adopted by City Council November 8, 2000.)

B.    Provision of services to individuals and businesses supporting a regional market area, or ancillary to and supportive of the primary regional commercial uses in the C-4 zone:

1.    Food services, including:

a.    Catering services.

b.    Coffee shops.

c.    Delicatessens and sandwich shops.

d.    Doughnut shops and bakeries.

e.    Fast-food restaurants (including drive through windows), pursuant to PMC 17.92.010.

f.    Ice cream and yogurt shops.

g.    Restaurants (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 15-01, adopted by City Council September 2, 2015.)

2.    Personal and repair services, including:

a.    Barber and beauty shops.

b.    Computer and electronics repair.

c.    Dry cleaners and launderers.

d.    Locksmith.

e.    Massage services and massage establishments, when conducted pursuant to PMC 5.04.560. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 13-004, adopted by City Council May, 7, 2014.)

f.    Photographic equipment repair.

g.    Photographic studios and processors (still photography only). (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 98-1, adopted by City Council March 10, 1999.)

h.    Shoe repair and shoe shine.

i.    Tailoring and apparel alterations.

j.    Travel agencies.

k.    Watch, clock and jewelry repair.

3.    Financial and real estate services, including:

a.    Banks, savings and loans, and credit unions offering a full range of financial services and accredited by appropriate agencies (drive-through facilities subject to PMC 17.92.010).

b.    Insurance offices.

c.    Investment services.

d.    Real estate sales offices.

4.    Professional services, including:

a.    Accounting, auditing and bookkeeping services.

b.    Attorneys and legal services.

c.    Engineering, architectural and planning services.

d.    Medical and dental laboratories.

e.    Physicians, surgeons, chiropractors, osteopathic physicians, dentists, oral surgeons, orthodontists, and other medical specialists.

f.    Prescription pharmacy and optical services.

5.    Business services, including:

a.    Advertisement, business and management.

b.    Graphic design.

c.    Photocopy.

d.    Printing.

e.    Stenographic, secretarial, clerical and mailing.

6.    Miscellaneous services, including:

a.    Administrative offices.

b.    Automobile repair, light or general, as an accessory use to a department store, general merchandise store or warehouse retail store. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 00-01, adopted by City Council November 8, 2000.)

c.    Business and trade association offices.

d.    Parking lots and structures, commercial off-site, pursuant to PMC 17.87.050.

e.    Professional membership organizations.

C.    Public, quasi-public and institutional uses, including:

1.    Fire stations.

2.    Museums.

3.    Parking lots.

4.    Schools from kindergarten through grade twelve (12), excluding trade or technical schools. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 03-06, adopted by City Council June 25, 2003.)

5.    Sheriff’s substations.

6.    Transit related facilities.

7.    Utility facilities, excluding major communication facility. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 97-3, adopted by City Council September 10, 1997.)

17.54.070 Uses Permitted Subject to Approval of a Conditional Use Permit

In conjunction with an approved Master Plan pursuant to PMC 17.53.040, premises in Zone C-4 may be uses for the following purposes, provided that a permit has first been obtained pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 17.22 PMC, Conditional Use Permits.

A.    Amusement arcades.

B.    Automobile service stations, pursuant to PMC 17.92.110.

C.    Bars, pursuant to PMC 17.92.070. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 15-01, adopted by City Council on September 2, 2015.)

D.    Car washes, full service. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 00-01, adopted by City Council November 8, 2000.)

E.    Conference and meeting facilities. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 03-06, adopted by City Council June 25, 2003.)

F.    Convenience stores, pursuant to PMC 17.92.090.

G.    Family entertainment centers.

H.    Gas stations.

I.    Health clubs, fitness centers and gymnasiums.

J.    Hotels and motels.

K.    Major communication facility pursuant to PMC 17.95.040. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 97-3, adopted by City Council September 10, 1997.)

L.    Night clubs, pursuant to PMC 17.92.070.

M.    Purchase and sale of secondhand tangible personal property, incidental to a primary use permitted within the C-4 zone, pursuant to PMC 17.92.150. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 10-01, adopted by City Council August 4, 2010.)

N.    Religious assembly uses pursuant to PMC 17.94.010. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 03-06, adopted by City Council June 25, 2003.)

O.    Restaurants, bona fide pursuant to PMC 17.92.070. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 15-01, adopted by City Council September 2, 2015.)

P.    Swap meets, flea markets or similar uses, indoor or outdoor (outdoor uses are subject to the standards set forth in PMC 17.92.080). (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 98-1, adopted by City Council March 10, 1999.)

Q.    Theaters, live performance.

R.    Theaters, motion picture.

17.54.080 Accessory Uses and Structures Permitted

The following accessory uses and structures are permitted in the C-4 zone, provided that such uses are established on the same lot or parcel of land as the permitted principal use, and that such accessory uses are incidental to and do not substantially alter the character of the principal use.

A.    Amusement machines

Not more than four (4) amusement machines may be permitted as an accessory use within a primary use in the C-4 zone.

B.    Areas designated and designed for the temporary storage of trash and recyclable materials, including the following:

1.    Recycling containers, pursuant to PMC 17.85.030.

2.    Reverse vending machines, pursuant to PMC 17.97.040. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 98-1, adopted by City Council March 10, 1999.)

3.    Small Collection Facilities, pursuant to PMC 17.97.050.

4.    Trash compactors, pursuant to PMC 17.85.020.

C.    Child care facilities to serve customers or patrons of the primary use.

D.    Health facilities, mobile.

E.    Newspaper dispensing devices, pursuant to PMC 12.08.030.

F.    Services provided to meet the needs of employees on site, including employee cafeterias, day care centers, health clubs, exercise tracks, gymnasiums or work out rooms, showers and similar uses. For purposes of calculating permitted floor area ratio, these uses may be exempted from the calculation.

G.    Signs, as permitted by Chapter 17.88 PMC.

H.    Structures and features associated with pedestrian seating or amenity areas, including but not limited to gazebos, arcades, fountains, seats or benches, trash receptacles, art works or other landscape focal points, and kiosks providing directions or public information.

I.    Wire services for money transfer and ATM machines.

J.    Massage, when permitted with the primary business of a health club, fitness center, and gymnasium, a hotel with over one hundred (100) rooms, a barber and beauty shop, or physician’s, surgeon’s, chiropractor’s, osteopath’s, or physical therapist’s medical practice, pursuant to PMC 5.04.560 and 17.92.140. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 96-3, adopted by City Council January 8, 1997.)

K.    Corporate Massage, when permitted with a primary commercial business, pursuant to PMC 5.04.560 and 17.92.140. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 96-3, adopted by City Council January 8, 1997.)

L.    Car washes, automated as an accessory use to a gas station or automobile service station. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 00-01, adopted by City Council November 8, 2000.)

M.    Co-located Small Wind Energy Systems pursuant to PMC 17.99.010. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 09-02, adopted by City Council November 4, 2009.)

N.    Firearms and related accessories, sales and service, as an accessory use to the retail sales of sporting equipment. (Zoning Ordinance Amendment 14-03, adopted by City Council July 2, 2014.)

17.54.090 Similar Uses Permitted by Planning Director Determination

The Planning Director may determine that an unlisted use is similar to and not more objectionable to the general welfare than those uses specifically listed in the C-4 zone, pursuant to PMC 17.24.120.

17.54.100 Standards of Development

(Zoning Ordinance Amendment 98-1, adopted by City Council March 10, 1999.)

Premises in Zone C-4 shall be subject to the development standards prescribed in this Section and those standards contained in Division 8, General Standards of Development, except as these standards may be modified by an approved master plan for development pursuant to PMC 17.54.030.

A.    Lot area

Each lot or parcel of land created in Zone C-4 shall have a minimum lot area of not less than five thousand (5,000) square feet net, or the number following the zoning symbol (if any), whichever is greater.

B.    Lot width

None required except as otherwise provided in Chapter 17.81 PMC, Lot Width.

C.    Building setbacks

1.    Setbacks along public and private streets for commercial, buildings

All commercial, public/institutional, and office buildings shall maintain a minimum building setback measured from the public right-of-way (or the edge of the curb for private streets) to the nearest edge of the building as follows except as otherwise provided in this Ordinance or in an adopted comprehensive development plan:

a.    Arterials: A minimum building setback of thirty (30) feet, including a minimum of twenty feet (20') of landscaping along all designated arterials. Arterials are defined by the General Plan Circulation Element and indicated on the City’s Circulation Plan Map.

b.    Local and collector streets: A minimum building setback of twenty (20) feet, including a minimum of ten (10) feet of landscaping shall be provided along local and collector streets, both public and private. Except where a commercial use is separated from a residential use or district by a local or collector street, then the minimum building setback from such street shall be twenty (20') feet and shall include a minimum landscape setback of fifteen (15') feet.

c.    Freeway: Within commercial zones, a minimum building setback of twenty (20) feet, which shall be landscaped, shall be provided along a freeway frontage.

2.    Interior side yards

Each lot or parcel of land in Zone C-4 shall provide a minimum twenty (20) foot wide building setback with a minimum ten (10) foot wide landscape strip along side property lines which are contiguous to property designated or used for agricultural, institutional, single-family or multi-family residential uses, pursuant to PMC 17.83.030.

3.    Interior rear yard

Each lot or parcel of land in Zone C-4 shall provide a minimum twenty (20) foot wide building setback with a minimum ten (10) foot wide landscape strip along rear property lines which are contiguous to property designated or used for agricultural, institutional, single-family or multi-family residential uses, pursuant to PMC 17.83.030.

4.    Setbacks for accessory structures

Setbacks for accessory structures shall be provided pursuant to PMC 17.82.020.

D.    Building height and coverage

1.    Building height

The maximum height of a primary structure, as measured in accordance with PMC 17.16.020, shall not exceed three (3) stories or forty-five (45) feet. The maximum height of accessory structures shall not exceed one story or seventeen (17) feet.

2.    Maximum lot coverage

No lot or parcel of land in Zone C-4 shall have a lot coverage by buildings or structures in excess of ninety (90) percent of the lot area.

3.    Maximum floor area ratio

The ratio of total floor area to total lot area shall not exceed 1.0 (one hundred percent).

E.    Off-street parking and loading

Each lot or parcel of land in Zone C-4 shall have off-street parking and loading facilities as prescribed in Chapter 17.87 PMC, Off-Street Parking.

F.    Signs

Signs shall comply with the provisions of Chapter 17.88 PMC.

G.    Trash enclosures

An adequate number of trash enclosures shall be provided on site to meet the needs of each development, in accordance with PMC 17.85.010.

H.    Special development standards

1.    Each use in this zone shall be established and operated in accordance with Chapter 17.84 PMC, Performance Standards.

2.    All display and storage in Zone C-4 shall be located wholly within an enclosed area except for the following, provided that all outdoor display areas are paved, landscaped, and lighted in accordance with an approved development plan:

a.    Automobile service stations, but excluding outside display of other than automobile tires, batteries and similar equipment and accessories or petroleum products.

b.    Florist shops

c.    Parking lots

3.    All auto repair work shall be conducted within an enclosed building only.

4.    Delivery hours may be limited by the Planning Commission pursuant to an approved Conditional Use Permit.

5.    Fences and walls shall be in conformance with the standards prescribed in PMC 17.83.030 and 17.86.040.

6.    Landscaping and screening shall be in conformance with the standards prescribed in Chapter 17.86 PMC.