Chapter 15.10
ROADWAY AND ROADSIDE IMPROVEMENTS

Sections:

15.10.010    Purpose.

15.10.020    Amendment.

15.10.030    Applicability.

15.10.040    Definitions.

15.10.050    Development requirements.

15.10.060    Improvement standards.

15.10.070    In-lieu fee.

15.10.080    Trust funds created.

15.10.090    Record of payment.

15.10.010 Purpose.

The County General Plan and the Local Coastal Program Land Use Plan require certain transportation and roadside improvements to be constructed in conjunction with development projects. The purpose of this chapter is to implement these plans by specifying the method for either constructing such improvements concurrently with new development or collecting equivalent in lieu fees to construct such improvements at a later, more appropriate time. These improvements, while providing for safe vehicular and pedestrian traffic, also serve to reduce the adverse impacts of development on drainage and water quality. [Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982; Ord. 2897, 1980; Ord. 2800, 1979; Ord. 2568, 1978].

15.10.020 Amendment.

Any revision to this chapter which applies to the Coastal Zone shall be reviewed by the Executive Director of the California Coastal Commission to determine whether it constitutes an amendment to the Local Coastal Program such revision shall be processed pursuant to the hearing and notification provisions of Chapter 13.03 SCCC and shall be subject to approval by the California Coastal Commission. [Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982].

15.10.030 Applicability.

The requirements of this chapter shall apply as a condition of approval of any permit to build or place a structure or mobile home, or to divide land, on an arterial, or collector or local street, within a transportation improvement area or within the urban services line, where street width and roadside improvements meeting current County design criteria do not already exist. Parcels with roadside improvements constructed using moneys from trust funds, created according to SCCC 15.10.080, shall be required to pay for improvements along their property frontage either at the time such improvements are made or as a condition of a subsequent permit to build or place a structure or mobile home, change the use, or to divide land. This section shall apply to permits for accessory structures. This section shall not apply to modifications or improvements of less than 70 square feet to existing structures or which do not result in the creation of additional bedrooms as defined by SCCC 13.10.700-B. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section, equivalent improvements may be required as a condition of a discretionary permit for any project which increases the intensity of use (automobile and/or pedestrian traffic) upon the recommendation of the Planning Director or Public Works Director. [Ord. 4836 § 120, 2006; Ord. 4396 § 6, 1995; Ord. 4318 § 5, 1994; Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3634 § 1, 1985; Ord. 3597 § 1, 1984; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982; Ord. 2800, 1979; Ord. 2568, 1978].

15.10.040 Definitions.

All terms used in this chapter shall be as defined in the General Plan and Local Coastal Program Land Use Plan glossaries and as follows:

“Arterial street” means a street designated as an arterial street on the County General Plan map. Such streets and highways serve the major activity areas, are the highest traffic volume corridors, and provide a high proportion of total urban area travel.

“Collector street” means a street designated as a collector street on the County General Plan map. Such streets penetrate neighborhoods, collect traffic from local streets in the neighborhood, and channel it onto the arterial street system.

“County design criteria” means standards as developed by the Public Works Department, approved by resolution of the Board of Supervisors, incorporated by reference herein, and kept on file in the office of the Public Works Department.

“Local street” means a street serving three or more lots. Such streets provide direct access to abutting land and access to collector and arterial streets.

“Non-County maintained street” means a local street not maintained by the County. These streets must be maintained by a homeowners’ association, and must meet local street design criteria.

“Plan line” means a graphical representation on an aerial photograph (one inch equals 20 feet) of an approved route concept or design criteria standards, as approved by the Board of Supervisors, depicting the ultimate improvement guidelines for a specific street segment, and a written summary of potential impacts and an engineer’s estimate for improvement costs. The plan line shall generally include guidance on the number and location of travel and turn lanes, bike lanes, on-street parking, roadside improvements, transit facilities, utility corridors, and estimates of required right-of-way.

“Roadside improvements” means curb, gutter, sidewalk, drainage and street tree improvements which are located within the right-of-way at either edge of the roadway.

“Roadway improvements” means improvements to that portion of the roadway utilized for vehicular travel and located between the curbs on either side of the road.

“Select local street” means a local street serving schools, parks, and other recreational areas. Such streets are to be given priority for improvements over other local streets.

“Transportation improvement area” means a General Plan planning area in which transportation improvement fees are collected.

“Transportation improvements” means any improvement needed to improve the overall transportation system. Such improvements may include, but are not limited to, signals, plan lines, road widening, bus turnouts, turn lanes and bike lanes. [Ord. 4196 § 1, 1992; Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982].

15.10.050 Development requirements.

(A)    Collector, Arterial, and Select Local Streets.

(1)    Except as hereinafter provided, all development projects on collector or arterial streets, as designated in the County General Plan, or on select local streets designated for improvements in the County capital improvement program, shall provide the following roadway and roadside improvements along the property frontage utilizing the guidelines established by an approved plan line, or the County design criteria if a plan line does not exist:

(a)    Irrevocable offer of public dedication of right-of-way, and/or easements.

(b)    Roadway widening and/or improvements.

(c)    Roadside improvements (curbs, gutters, sidewalks, and street trees).

(2)    The engineering review group (ERG) may require a plan line study to be provided as part of a development application, other than an application for a single-family dwelling, when the ERG determines that:

(a)    Proposed improvements for the development application based upon the County design criteria standards would not be practical or feasible due to existing roadway alignment, topographical or environmental constraints, or would not be compatible with adjacent improvements or previously approved route concepts; and

(b)    A plan line study is necessary and feasible to provide ultimate improvement guidelines for the proposed improvements in relation to other development projected to take place in the future, or in relation to public improvements projected to be constructed in the future.

(3)    If a plan line study is required, the development permit application shall be considered incomplete until such time as the Board of Supervisors approves the appropriate plan line. The ERG, may, however, based upon the following criteria, determine that the plan line approval is not required prior to a completeness determination for the permit application and instead defer the plan line approval requirement to the first public hearing for the development proposal:

(a)    Adjacent parcels have standard improvements in place to which this project could conform.

(b)    The project frontage improvements have already been installed to match adjacent parcel improvements.

(c)    The plan line requirement is for an adjacent intersecting street and the project’s frontage improvements and right-of-way dedications are not contingent upon the approval of this plan line.

(4)    The requirement for a plan line study may be appealed to the Planning Director pursuant to the provisions of Article VI of Chapter 18.10 SCCC. In deciding the appeal, the Planning Director may either:

(a)    Affirm the ERG’s determination that a plan line be required;

(b)    Modify the ERG’s determination as to the scope or other requirements of the plan line study;

(c)    Determine that the development shall be required to complete a plan study prior to the first public hearing for the proposed development; or

(d)    Determine that the plan line study shall not be required.

(B)    Local Streets within the Urban Services Line and within a Transportation Improvement Area. Except as hereinafter provided, all projects on local streets within the urban services line and within a transportation improvement area shall make an irrevocable offer of public dedication of right-of-way in conformance with County design criteria and shall construct transportation and roadside improvements unless granted an exception per subsection (F) of this section.

(C)    Local Streets within the Urban Services Line but Outside a Transportation Improvement Area. Except as hereinafter provided, all projects on local streets within the urban services line but outside a transportation improvement area shall make an irrevocable offer of public dedication of right-of-way in conformance with County design criteria and shall pay fees in lieu of the roadway and roadside improvements.

(D)    Local Streets Outside the Urban Services Line but within a Transportation Improvement Area. Except as hereinafter provided, all projects on local streets outside the urban services line but within a transportation improvement area shall pay fees in lieu of the transportation and roadside improvements.

(E)    Special Conditions Requiring Improvements. Subsections (C) and (D) of this section notwithstanding, right-of-way dedication and transportation and roadside improvements may be required due to the size, location or character of the project; the presence of such improvements in the area; the need to protect surface water quality, riparian corridors, coastal lagoons or wetlands; or the presence of local drainage or topographic conditions which necessitate the improvements.

(F)    Exceptions to Improvement Requirements. The approving body, after consultation with the Director of Public Works, may approve an exception to roadway and roadside improvement standards and require instead the payment of in lieu fees based on one of the following findings; and provided, that if the subject site drains into a coastal lagoon, wetland, or riparian corridor, then measures are incorporated into the site plan to protect water quality and/or the in lieu or other fees are to be spent to protect water quality of the subject water body.

(1)    The improvements are not appropriate due to the character of development in the area and the lack of such improvements on surrounding developed property;

(2)    Local drainage or topographic conditions render the improvements physically infeasible;

(3)    The improvements would constitute an unacceptable geologic hazard as substantiated by a written report by a registered soils engineer or geologist;

(4)    The improvements would be located in an environmentally sensitive area as shown by information on file in the Planning Department; and the impacts cannot be satisfactorily mitigated; or

(5)    The required improvements would encroach on private property in which neither the developer nor the County have an interest sufficient to allow the improvements to be constructed or installed; the developer has attempted in good faith, but been unable to acquire such an interest; and the County has not acquired such an interest through its power of eminent domain pursuant to SCCC 14.01.513 or 18.10.240.

(G)    Exception at Minimum Local Street Standard. For new local streets serving up to four units, if adjoining properties are built-out in accordance with the General Plan and it is not possible to design access to meet the local street standard, an exception will be considered at a minimum local street standard, as specified in the County design criteria. [Amended during 9/07 supplement; Ord. 4196 § 2, 1992; Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 4010 § 1, 1989; Ord. 3966 § 1, 1988; Ord. 3938 § 1, 1988; Ord. 3648 § 2, 1985; Ord. 3634 § 2, 1985; Ord. 3597 § 2, 1984; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982].

15.10.060 Improvement standards.

Road right-of-way dedication requirements, roadway widening or improvements, and curb, gutter, sidewalk, and street tree construction and placement along with the property frontage shall meet the County design criteria. Where improvements are required of a development project, the improvements shall be completed prior to recording of the final land division map, unless such completion is guaranteed by securities; or in the absence of a land division, prior to final building inspection. [Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982; Ord. 2897, 1980; Ord. 2800, 1979; Ord. 2568, 1978].

15.10.070 In-lieu fee.

The fees to be paid in lieu of construction improvements shall be established by resolution of the Board of Supervisors, and shall be revised annually to reflect the engineering and unit costs as developed by the County Public Works Department. Where in-lieu fees are required, they shall be paid prior to issuance of project building permits or recording of the final land division map, whichever comes first. [Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982; Ord. 2897, 1980; Ord. 2800, 1979; Ord. 2568, 1978].

15.10.080 Trust funds created.

All fees received pursuant to this chapter shall be paid into trust funds, established by planning areas, maintained by the Auditor-Controller and administered by the Director of Public Works according to a five-year roadside improvement plan approved by the Board of Supervisors. The fees accumulated in the funds shall be used for the purpose of making roadside and water-quality related drainage improvements to arterial, collector, and local streets in the respective planning areas; portions of the funds may also be used for roadway improvements where required between the new roadside improvements and the existing roadway. Fees may also be used for initiating assessment districts for construction of roadside and water-quality related drainage improvements in each planning area respectively. [Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982; Ord. 2897, 1980; Ord. 2800, 1979; Ord. 2568, 1978].

15.10.090 Record of payment.

Roadside improvement fees shall be recorded with property assessor parcel numbers. The fees shall be credited against future assessment districts’ costs for roadside improvements. [Ord. 4065 § 1, 1990; Ord. 3339 § 1, 1982; Ord. 2897, 1980; Ord. 2800, 1979; Ord. 2568, 1978].