Chapter 17.68
PERMITS AND VARIANCES

Sections:

17.68.010    Conditional use permits.

17.68.020    Variances.

17.68.030    Minor exceptions.

17.68.040    Development review permits.

17.68.050    Coastal development permits.

17.68.060    Planned unit developments.

17.68.070    Exclusions from permit requirements for repair, maintenance and utility hook-ups.

17.68.010 Conditional use permits.

A. Purpose and Intent. It is the purpose of these regulations to provide for the review of certain types of uses which because of their unique site or design requirements, operating characteristics or potential adverse effects, require special consideration to assure compatibility with the surrounding area. The conditional use permit process is intended to afford an opportunity for public review and evaluation of such uses, to provide adequate mitigation of any potentially adverse impacts, and to ensure that the development regulations of this title are met.

It is further intended that in exchange for the development and land use privileges extended under a conditional use permit, the permittee will agree to abide by all conditions which the city may require. Both these privileges and conditions shall constitute a covenant which runs with the land, and in addition to binding the permittee, shall likewise bind each successor in interest.

B. Conditional Use Permit Required.

1. Uses which require a conditional use permit are indicated in SBMC 17.12.020 (Use Regulations Matrix) Table 17.12.020-A:

“C”     indicates that the use is subject to a conditional use permit issued by the director of community development in accordance with the procedures of this section.

“CC”    indicates that the use is subject to a conditional use permit issued by the city council in accordance with the procedures of this section.

2. In the event a use is not specifically listed, but is similar in character to a conditional use which is listed, the director of community development shall have the authority to categorize such use. In the event there is difficulty in categorizing a given use, or the director’s categorization is disputed, the procedure outlined in SBMC 17.12.030 (Use Determination) shall be followed.

3. Without first having obtained a conditional use permit, it shall be unlawful for any person to construct a building or operate a use when such building or use is required by the provisions of this title to obtain a conditional use permit.

4. No building permit or other development permits shall be issued relating to a project for which a conditional use permit is required by this title until a conditional use permit is obtained.

C. Authority to Grant Permit. The city council and the director of community development are authorized to grant conditional use permits in accordance with the procedures of this section and to impose reasonable conditions. Conditions may include, but are not limited to, requirements for special yards, open spaces, buffers, fences, walls, and screening; requirements for installation and maintenance of landscaping and erosion control measures; requirements for street improvements and dedications, regulation of vehicular ingress and egress, and traffic circulation; regulation of signs; regulation of hours or other characteristics of operation; requirements for maintenance of landscaping and other improvements; establishment of development schedules or time limits for performance or completion; requirements for periodical review by the city council or director of community development; and such other conditions as the city council or director of community development may deem necessary to ensure compatibility with surrounding uses, to preserve the public health, safety, and welfare, and to make the findings required by subsection F of this section.

D. Application. An application for a conditional use permit shall be submitted to the department of community development on forms provided by the department. The application shall contain sufficient information and plans to permit review pursuant to this section. An application processing fee in an amount established by city council resolution shall be paid at the time of submission of the application.

E. Public Hearing.

1. The director of community development shall hold a public hearing on each application for a conditional use permit for which director approval is required. The hearings shall be set and notice given as prescribed in SBMC 17.72.030 (Public Hearings and Notice Requirements).

2. The city council shall hold a public hearing on each application for a conditional use permit for which city council approval is required. The hearings shall be set and notice given as prescribed in SBMC 17.72.030 (Public Hearings and Notice Requirements).

F. Findings.

1. Before granting a conditional use permit, the planning director or city council shall make all of the following findings:

a. That the proposed use is in accord with the general plan, the general intent of this title, and the purposes of the zone in which the site is located.

b. That the proposed use, together with the conditions applicable thereto, will not be detrimental to the public health, safety, or welfare, or materially injurious to properties or improvements in the vicinity.

c. That the proposed use complies with each of the applicable provisions of the zoning ordinance, unless a variance is granted pursuant to SBMC 17.68.020.

2. If the conditional use permit is for the purpose of permitting an expansion, restoration, or extension of a nonconforming use or structure then only the findings of Chapter 17.16 SBMC must be made.

G. Appeals. Decisions on conditional use permit applications made by the director of community development may be appealed by the applicant or other aggrieved party to the city council in accordance with SBMC 17.72.070 (Appeals). Decisions on conditional use permits made by the city council shall be final.

H. Pre-existing Conditional Use Permits.

1. A use or structure legally established by conditional use permit prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified in this title may continue in accordance with Chapter 17.16 SBMC (Nonconforming Uses and Structures); provided, that the use is operated and maintained in compliance with the conditions prescribed at the time of its establishment, if any.

2. The alteration, expansion, or reconstruction of a structure housing a use legally established by conditional use permit prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified in this title shall comply with Chapter 17.16 SBMC (Nonconforming Uses and Structures).

3. A use or structure legally established by conditional use permit prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified in this title may be considered for expansion, restoration, or time extension pursuant to the issuance of a new conditional use permit granted in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 17.16 SBMC (Nonconforming Uses and Structures).

I. Revisions/Modifications to Conditional Use Permits. Revisions or modifications to a conditional use permit may be requested by the permittee or successor in interest. Further, the city council may periodically review, modify or revoke a conditional use permit.

1. Revision/Modifications by Permittee or Successor in Interest. A revision or modification to an approved conditional use permit, such as, but not limited to, changes in conditions, expansions, intensification of use, or changes in location or hours of operation, may be requested by the permittee or successor in interest. Such request shall be processed as described in subsections D through G of this section. The application shall indicate the reasons for the requested change.

2. Review by the City Council. The city council may periodically review any conditional use permit to ensure that it is being operated in a manner consistent with the conditions of approval or in a manner which is not detrimental to the public health, safety, or welfare, or materially injurious to properties in the vicinity. If, after such review, the city council determines that there is sufficient evidence to warrant a full examination, then a public hearing date shall be set.

3. Modification or Revocation by the City Council for Cause. After setting a date for public hearing as described in subsection (I)(2) above, the director of community development shall notify the holder of the conditional use permit in question. Such notice shall be sent by certified mail and shall state that the city council will be reviewing the conditional use permit for possible modification or revocation for cause. A hearing shall be set and notice given as prescribed in SBMC 17.72.030 (Public Hearings and Notice Requirements). The director of community development shall fully investigate the evidence and prepare a report for the city council’s consideration. Upon conclusion of the public hearing, the city council shall render a decision which is supported by one of the following findings to be included in the resolution:

i. The conditional use permit is being conducted in an appropriate manner and that no action to modify or revoke is necessary; or

ii. The conditional use permit is not being conducted in an appropriate manner and that modifications to conditions are necessary; or

iii. The conditional use permit is not being conducted in an appropriate manner and modifications are not available to mitigate the adverse impacts to surrounding properties. The permit is therefore revoked and the operation shall cease and desist in the time allotted by the city council.

If the city council either modifies or revokes a conditional use permit, the reasons for such action shall be stated within the resolution. (Ord. 185 § 2, 1993)

17.68.020 Variances.

A. Purpose and Intent. The purpose of this section is to provide flexibility from the strict application of development standards where special circumstances pertaining to a property would otherwise deprive such property of privileges enjoyed by other properties in the vicinity and in the same zone. Such special circumstances include hardships caused by size, shape, topography, or location of property where remedies exist which are not detrimental to the public health, safety, or welfare and are consistent with the purpose and intent of this title. Any variance granted shall be subject to such conditions as will assure that the adjustment authorized will not constitute a grant of special privileges inconsistent with the limitations upon other properties in the vicinity and zone in which the property is located.

B. Decision Making Authority.

1. The director of community development is authorized to approve, deny, or approve with conditions the variance applications specified in subsection C of this section. Conditions may include, but shall not be limited to, requirements for special yards, open spaces, buffers, fences, walls, and screening; requirements for installation and maintenance of landscaping and erosion control measures; requirements for street improvements and dedications; regulation of vehicular ingress and egress, and traffic circulation; regulation of signs; regulation of hours or other characteristics of operation; requirements for maintenance of landscaping and other improvements; establishment of development schedules or time limits for performance or completion; requirements for periodic review by the director; and such other conditions as the director may deem necessary to ensure compatibility with surrounding uses, to preserve the public health, safety, and welfare, and to make the findings required by subsection E of this section.

2. A variance shall not be granted to extend use regulations. Flexibility to the use regulations is provided pursuant to SBMC 17.68.010 (Conditional Use Permits) and SBMC 17.12.030 (Use Determination).

3. Variances may be granted in conjunction with conditional use permits and development review permits; provided the findings of subsection E of this section are made. Such variances do not require a separate application or a separate public hearing.

C. Application. An application for a variance shall be filed with the department of community development on a form provided by the department. The application shall contain sufficient information to permit review pursuant to this section. An application processing fee in an amount established by city council resolution shall be paid at the time of submission of the application.

D. Public Hearing. The director of community development shall hold a public hearing on each application for a variance. The hearing shall be set and notice given as prescribed in SBMC 17.72.030 (Public Hearings and Notice Requirements).

E. Findings. Before granting a variance, the director of community development shall make all of the following findings:

1. That strict or literal interpretation and enforcement of the specified regulation would result in practical difficulty or unnecessary physical hardship inconsistent with the objectives of the general plan and intent of this title.

2. That there are exceptional or extraordinary circumstances or conditions applicable to the property involved, or to the intended use of the property, that do not apply generally to other properties in the same zone.

3. That strict or literal interpretation and enforcement of the specified regulation would deprive the applicant of privileges enjoyed by the owners of other properties in the same zone.

4. That the granting of the variance will not be detrimental to the public health, safety, welfare, or materially injurious to properties or improvements in the vicinity.

F. Appeals. Decisions on variance applications may be appealed by the applicant or other aggrieved party to the city council in accordance with SBMC 17.72.070 (Appeals).

G. Expiration of Variance. If construction (or other entitlement) authorized by an approved variance has not been commenced within two years of the variance approval, the variance shall be rendered null and void, unless an extension has been granted.

H. Consistency of Working Drawings with Approved Plans. A variance approval shall pertain only to those plans reviewed and approved with the variance. Further, all plans approved with a variance shall be considered an integral part of the variance approval. The director of community development shall ensure that any final working drawings for grading or construction authorized by a variance approval are consistent with said previous reviewed plans prior to release of working drawings for plan check. The director may approve minor variations from previously reviewed plans if it is determined that the original plan concepts are being carried out.

I. Revocation. A variance may be revoked or modified (including the imposition of additional conditions) by the director of community development or the city council upon finding that the conditions of approval of the variance have not been met or that the land use is being operated in violation of other provisions of this title. A public hearing shall be held in accordance with SBMC 17.72.030 (Public Hearing and Notice Requirements) prior to action on the revocation or modification. The director of community development may schedule such a hearing upon preliminary finding of noncompliance with any of the preceding requirements. (Ord. 185 § 2, 1993)

17.68.030 Minor exceptions.

A. Purpose. In order to provide for the flexibility necessary to achieve the objectives of this title, this section provides for the administrative review and adjustment of selected site development regulations as set forth in subsection C of this section.

B. Authority. The director of community development is authorized to grant a minor exception in accordance with the procedures in this section and to impose reasonable conditions.

C. Development Regulations Which Qualify.

1. Only the following development regulations shall qualify for a minor exception:

a. Fence Height. In any zone the director may allow an increase to the maximum height of any fence, wall, retaining wall or equivalent screening by a maximum of two feet, where the topography of sloping sites or a difference in grade between adjoining sites warrants such increase in height to maintain a level of privacy, or to maintain effective screening.

b. Parking Design Standards. In any zone, the director may waive or modify one or more of the parking design standards set forth in SBMC 17.52.030 where practical difficulties make their strict application infeasible, and upon a finding that the waiver or modification is consistent with the purpose and intent of the City of Solana Beach Offstreet Parking Design Manual and Chapter 17.52 SBMC.

2. More than one minor exception for any parcel shall constitute a variance and shall be reviewed in accordance with SBMC 17.68.020 (Variances).

D. Application. An application for a minor exception shall be filed with the department of community development on a form provided by the department. The application shall contain sufficient information to permit review pursuant to this section. An application processing fee in an amount established by city council resolution shall be paid at the time of submission of the application.

E. Notification. The director shall notify the applicant and all property owners within 300 feet of the subject site for floor area minor exceptions (inclusive of public rights-of-way) and within 50 feet of the subject site for fence height, setbacks or parking design standard minor exceptions (exclusive of public rights-of-way) by mail 20 days prior to the director’s decision. Said notice shall state the following:

1. Requested action;

2. Location of the requested action;

3. Name and address (parcel and lot number) of the applicant;

4. Date which a decision will be made on application.

F. Findings. Before granting a minor exception, the director of community development shall make all of the following findings:

1. That strict or literal interpretation and enforcement of the specified regulation would result in practical difficulty or unnecessary physical hardship inconsistent with the objectives of the general plan and intent of this title.

2. That the granting of the minor exception will not be detrimental to the public health, safety, welfare, or materially injurious to properties or improvements in the vicinity.

G. Appeals. Decisions on minor exception applications may be appealed by the applicant or other aggrieved party to the city council in accordance with SBMC 17.72.070 (Appeals). (Ord. 357 § 6, 2007; Ord. 185 § 2, 1993)

17.68.040 Development review permits.

A. Purpose and Intent. It is the purpose and intent of these regulations to provide for the review of certain classes of development projects which due to their scale, proximity to environmentally sensitive resource areas, or unique design features as permitted by a zone or specific plan, require special discretionary consideration to insure consistency with the general plan and the intent of the zone in which the property is located. These regulations are intended to encourage site and structural development which (1) respects the physical and environmental characteristics of the site, (2) ensures safe and convenient access and circulation for pedestrians and vehicles, and (3) exemplifies the best professional design practices. It is further the intent of this section to eliminate confusion and processing burdens by the consolidation of all overlay zone and special district requirements into a single permit process.

B. Projects Requiring Development Review Permits.

1. An application for a development review permit shall be required for any structure or site development which meets any of the following criteria:

a. New construction (including structural additions to existing development) totaling 30,000 gross square feet or more, except greenhouses in the (A) zone and structures in residential zones.

b. Any residential projects of 20 or more units.

c. Any new common interest developments.

d. Any site development (including grading for any purpose) or construction (including any structural additions to existing development) that involves an aggregate of more than 100 cubic yards of cut and/or fill, excepting:

i. The excavation for the construction of residential swimming pools/spas including backfilling/elimination of existing swimming pools/spas; and

ii. City of Solana Beach approved public works projects in the existing public right-of-way.

e. Any new residential structure or structural addition in the MHR or HR zones which exceeds 25 feet in height and any new nonresidential structure or structural addition which exceeds 30 feet in height.

f. Any development on property located within the hillside overlay zone (HOZ), except minor additions to existing single-family residences which do not increase the existing building envelope or require more than 100 cubic yards of grading. (See SBMC 17.48.020, Hillside overlay zone, for additional exemptions.)

g. Any development on property located within the scenic area overlay zone (SAOZ), except minor additions to existing structures which do not increase the existing building envelope or floor area by more than 10 percent or require more than 50 cubic yards of grading. (See SBMC 17.48.010, Scenic Area Overlay Zone for additional exemptions).

h. Any development on property located within the floodplain overlay zone (FPOZ), except a single-family residence on a single lot including accessory structures thereto which is located at least one foot above the 100-year flood level and is otherwise designed to withstand periodic flooding.

i. Any development on a coastal bluff top property or on the face or toe of a bluff for which a coastal development permit issued by the California Coastal Commission is presently required.

j. Any development which involves the exterior alteration of a designated historical/cultural landmark pursuant to SBMC 17.60.160 (Historic/Cultural Landmark Designation Regulations).

k. Any development project or development option for which a development review permit is required pursuant to a zone, overlay zone, specific plan or other regulatory provision of this title.

l. Any new commercial development or construction (including any structural addition to existing development) located within any commercial zone which results in an increase of more than 500 feet of gross floor area or to the overall building envelope. This requirement shall apply to any property with an underlying zoning designation defined in Chapters 17.24 (commercial, light commercial, office professional and light industrial), 17.28 (special commercial), 17.32 (public institutional) and 17.40 (open space/recreation) SBMC.

m. Any development on a property located within the scaled residential overlay zone (SROZ) shall also be subject to the SROZ superseding development regulations (SBMC 17.48.040), except as otherwise provided in that section.

Note: SBMC 17.48.040 (scaled residential overlay zone – (SROZ)) developments and/or projects located in the proposed SROZ do not require a development review permit (DRP) due to their location in the SROZ alone. However, be advised that any project or structure requiring a DRP as described in subsection (B)(1)(a) through (l) of this section that is located in the SROZ shall also be subject to SBMC 17.48.040 (SROZ) development regulations.

n. Any new construction, including replacement of an existing structure or structural additions to existing development in residential zones, shall require a development review permit if either or both of the following development criteria are satisfied:

i. The total of existing square footage plus proposed new square footage of the structure exceeds 60 percent of the maximum floor area allowable under the applicable floor area ratio.

ii. If new square footage is proposed for an existing or new second story, the total of the existing square footage plus proposed new square footage of only the second story of the structure exceeds 40 percent of the floor area of the first story existing floor area for residential lots of 6,000 square feet or less, or 35 percent of the floor area of the first story existing floor area for residential lots of greater than 6,000 square feet.

Each property shall receive a one-time exemption from the foregoing development review permit requirement if the proposed new construction does not exceed 500 square feet for a lot of 6,000 square feet or less, 600 square feet for a lot of 6,001 to 12,000 square feet, or 700 square feet for a lot greater than 12,000 square feet and it does not exceed the allowable floor area ratio.

2. No building permit or grading permit shall be issued relating to a project for which a development review permit is required by this title until a development review permit is obtained.

C. Authority to Grant Permit.

1. The city council shall have the authority to grant development review permits in accordance with the procedures of this section and to impose reasonable conditions where necessary to achieve consistency with the requirements of this section.

2. It shall be the responsibility of the director of community development to:

a. Review all applications for consistency with the requirements of this section;

b. Work with applicants as necessary to improve overall project design with respect to the requirements of this section;

c. Ensure that all public notice and hearing requirements are met; and

d. Make recommendations as requested by the city council.

D. Application Procedures. An application for a development review permit shall be submitted to the department of planning and community development on forms provided by the department. The application shall be accompanied by a development plan and such other information as may be required to adequately evaluate the proposed project. An application processing fee in an amount to be determined by city council resolution shall be paid at the time of the application submittal.

E. Content of Development Plan. The required development plan shall include such maps, plans, drawings, sketches, and finishing material samples as necessary to show:

1. The placement, height, and physical characteristics of all existing and proposed buildings and structures located on the development site;

2. Exterior features of buildings, including materials for siding, roofs, window treatments and similar architectural details;

3. The existing vegetation to be removed or retained and all proposed landscaping including specifications regarding species, size, and proposed irrigation systems;

4. The location and dimensions of existing and proposed ingress and egress points, interior roads and pedestrian walkways, parking and storage areas;

5. The existing and finished topography of the development site, including the existing natural drainage system and its proposed treatment;

6. The number, size, location and design of existing and proposed signs;

7. The location, intensity and orientation of proposed exterior lighting; and

8. The size and location of existing and proposed utilities.

F. Development Review Criteria. Development plans shall be reviewed for compliance with the following specific criteria:

1. Relationship with Adjacent Land Uses. The development shall be designed in a manner compatible with and complementary to existing development in the immediate vicinity of the project site and the surrounding neighborhood. The development as proposed shall also be compatible in scale, apparent bulk, and massing with such existing development in the surrounding neighborhood. Site planning on or near the perimeter of the development shall give consideration to the protection of surrounding areas from potential adverse effects.

2. Building and Structure Placement. Buildings and structures shall be sited and designed to minimize adverse impacts on the surrounding properties and designed in a manner which visually and functionally enhance their intended use and complement existing site topography. Multi-family residential buildings shall be sited to avoid crowding and to allow for a functional use of the space between buildings.

3. Landscaping. The removal of significant native vegetation shall be minimized. Replacement vegetation and landscaping shall be compatible with the vegetation of the surrounding area. To the maximum extent practicable, landscaping and plantings shall be used to screen parking areas, storage areas, access roads, and other service uses of the site. Trees and other large plantings shall not obstruct significant views when installed or at maturity. Drought tolerant plant materials and water conserving irrigation systems shall be incorporated into all landscaping plans.

4. Roads, Pedestrian Walkways, Parking, and Storage Areas. Any development involving more than one building or structure shall provide common access roads and pedestrian walkways. Parking and outside storage areas, where permitted, shall be screened from view, to the extent feasible, by existing topography, by the placement of buildings and structures, or by landscaping and plantings.

5. Grading. To the extent feasible, natural topography and scenic features of the site shall be retained and incorporated into the proposed development. Any grading or earth-moving operations in connection with the proposed development shall be planned and executed so as to blend with the existing terrain both on and adjacent to the site. Existing exposed or disturbed slopes shall be landscaped with native or naturalized non-native vegetation and existing erosion problems shall be corrected.

6. Lighting. Light fixtures for walkways, parking areas, driveways, and other facilities shall be provided in sufficient number and at proper locations to assure safe and convenient nighttime use. All light fixtures shall be appropriately shielded so that no light or glare is transmitted or reflected in such concentrated quantities or intensities as to be detrimental to the surrounding area. All exterior lighting, including lighting in designated “dark sky” areas, shall be in conformance with SBMC 17.60.060 (Exterior Lighting Regulations).

7. Usable Open Space. Recreational facilities proposed within required usable open space areas shall be located and designed to maintain essential open space values. Consideration shall be given to type and quantity of such uses, including but not limited to golf courses, picnic and barbecue areas, tot lots, open playing fields, swimming pools and spas, and court facilities.

G. Public Hearing. The director of community development shall transmit the application for a development review permit together with a recommendation thereon to the city council when all necessary reports and processing have been completed. The city council shall hold a public hearing on each application for a development review permit and shall render its decision by resolution. The hearings shall be set and notice given as prescribed in SBMC 17.72.030 (Public Hearing and Notice Requirements).

H. City Council Determination and Findings. The city council may approve or conditionally approve a development review permit only if all of the following findings can be made:

1. The proposed development is consistent with the general plan and all applicable requirements of this title, including special regulations, overlay zones, and specific plans.

2. The proposed development complies with the development review criteria set forth in subsection F of this section.

3. All required permits and approvals issued by the city, including variances, conditional use permits, comprehensive sign plans, and coastal development permits have been obtained prior to or concurrently with the development review permit.

4. If the development project also requires a permit or approval to be issued by a state or federal agency, the city council may conditionally approve the development review permit upon the applicant obtaining the required permit or approval from the other agency.

If the above findings cannot be made, the city council shall deny the development review permit.

I. Conditions of Approval. The city council in approving a development review permit may impose special conditions or requirements that include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Special setbacks, yards, open spaces;

2. Special regulation of the height and bulk of buildings;

3. Special requirements for fences and walls;

4. Regulation of signs;

5. Special landscaping requirements, including height restrictions;

6. Additional on-site parking or participation in programs to eliminate parking shortages in the neighborhood, or both;

7. Special grading restrictions;

8. Street dedications and improvements or secured agreements to provide such street dedications and improvements;

9. Public improvement and facilities either on or off the site that are needed to service the proposed need or burden created by the proposed development;

10. Establishing a time period, including phases, within which the project shall be completed;

11. Regulation of points of ingress and egress; and

12. Such other conditions as deemed necessary to ensure that the findings of subsection H of this section can be made.

All conditions which impose greater or different requirements than the underlying zoning shall be reasonably necessary to: (a) mitigate the impacts created or potentially created by the project and (b) ensure that the project is physically suitable for the site because of the topography, condition, or location of the property.

J. Finality of Decision. The decision of the city council on a development review permit or amendment shall be final.

K. Final Development Plan. After approval of the development review permit, the applicant shall submit a reproducible copy of a final development plan, which incorporates all the requirements of the approval, to the director of community development for signature. Prior to signing the final development plan, the director shall determine that all applicable requirements have been incorporated into the plan and that all conditions of approval have been satisfactorily met or otherwise guaranteed. The signed final development plan shall be the official site layout for the property, and shall be attached to any application for a building permit for the subject property. The final development plan and the development review permit shall be enforceable by the city pursuant to Chapter 1.08 SBMC or by an action for specific performance of the permit conditions.

L. Amendments to Existing Development Review Permits. An amendment to an existing development review permit may be requested by the permittee or successor interest. Such amendment shall be processed as described in subsections D through K of this section. (Ord. 464 § 2, 2015; Ord. 455 §§ 2 – 5, 2014; Ord. 433 §§ 1, 2, 3, 2011; Ord. 357 § 7, 2007; Ord. 347 § 1, 2006; Ord. 344 §§ 1, 2, 2006; Ord. 334 §§ 1, 2, 2005; Ord. 191 § 1, 1994; Ord. 185 § 2, 1993)

17.68.050 Coastal development permits.

(This section reserved for future ordinance).

17.68.060 Planned unit developments.

A. Purpose and Intent. It is the purpose of these planned unit development regulations to encourage the creative use of land and open space by permitting some carefully controlled relief from the strict application of the provisions of existing zoning districts. It allows flexibility and diversification in (1) the relationships of various buildings, structures and open space in planned building groups, and (2) in the allowable heights of buildings and structures, while insuring substantial compliance to the zone regulations and other provisions of this chapter by continuing to observe adequate standards related to public safety, health and general welfare without unduly inhibiting the advantages of modern imaginative site planning, and to implement the following objectives:

1. To provide a more desirable living environment;

2. To encourage creative approaches to the development of land;

3. To encourage the preservation of and the aesthetic use of open space.

B. Applicability. The planned unit development procedure may be used in combination with any one of the residential, commercial or industrial zones of this title.

C. Permitted Uses. No other than permitted principal, permitted accessory and conditional uses allowed in the zoning district with which the planned unit development is requested shall be permitted.

D. Project Area. The area of a planned unit development shall be no less than five acres; provided, however, that the city council may waive the minimum requirement where they find special and unusual circumstances of site and location do, in their judgment, warrant the use of this procedure on smaller areas.

E. Basic Principles. In considering a planned unit development for a site, the applicant(s) and the city shall be governed by the following requirements:

1. Conformity to Standards. Development within a planned unit approval in conformance with the procedures contained herein is exempt from the specific property development standards of the zone in which it is located, and those standards of SBMC 16.16.010 (Design of Subdivision), providing the plans and exhibits submitted and approved in conformance with these provisions clearly establish that the relationships of interior and exterior living, working or shopping areas and the associated environment are more desirable than would otherwise be achieved with the strict application of the requirements of this title, and those subdivision standards. Exception to development standards and other provisions of the zone in which the planned unit is located shall only be to the extent specified in the approved plans and exhibits.

2. Density. The number of dwelling units permitted in a planned unit development on a parcel or unit of land shall not exceed the number of lots into which the parcel or unit could lawfully be subdivided applying the design and improvement standards of the city’s subdivision ordinance and the minimum lot size standards of the city zoning ordinances. However, overall density may be increased pursuant to the provisions of SBMC 17.20.050 (Density Bonus).

F. Application. An application for a planned unit development shall be processed as prescribed for a conditional use permit, SBMC 17.68.010, and shall be heard by the city council.

G. Findings. In order to grant a planned unit development, the city council shall find the following:

1. The proposed planned unit development conforms to the general plan in terms of general location, density and general standards of development;

2. The development of a harmonious, integrated project in accordance with a precise development plan justifies exceptions, if such are required, to the normal requirements of this title.

H. Planned unit development for common interest or condominium minor subdivision of lots legally developed with more than one primary single-family dwelling unit.

Notwithstanding subsections (B), (D), (F)(2) and (G)(1) of this section, a planned unit development permit may be approved or conditionally approved for a common interest or condominium minor subdivision of a lot upon which more than one primary single-family dwelling unit exists if all of the following requirements are met:

1. The property is located in the MR, MHR or HR zones;

2. The single-family residential dwellings on the property were legally existing on July 1, 1986;

3. At least one of the dwellings is occupied by an owner of the property at the time of the application;

4. The project is compatible with the neighborhood, and with the exception of density, the general plan;

5. All other applicable requirements of this section are met. (Ord. 219 § 2, 1996; Ord. 185 § 2, 1993)

17.68.070 Exclusions from permit requirements for repair, maintenance and utility hook-ups.

A. Purpose and Intent. This section is intended to detail the types of development activities considered to be repair, maintenance or utility hook-ups related to the on-going work of various types of public and private agencies. Because such lists cannot be exhaustive these exclusions shall also apply to activities comparable to those listed. Where a proposed activity is not included in this section, the planning director, after consultation with the city council if necessary, will determine whether a permit is required. These exclusions are intended to be consistent with applicable state and federal regulations. Where any apparent conflict arises, such regulations shall supersede this title.

B. Description of Activities Excluded. The following construction activities shall not require a conditional use permit, development review permit, coastal development permit, or other discretionary approval except as specified below:

1. Roads. The repair and maintenance of existing public roads including landscaping, signalization, lighting, signing, resurfacing, installation or expansion of retaining walls, safety barriers and railings and other comparable development within the existing right-of-way as specified below. Maintenance activities are generally those necessary to preserve the highway facility as it was constructed, including: construction of temporary detours, removal of slides and slip cuts, restoration and repair of drainage appurtenances, installation of slope protection devices, installation of minor drainage facilities for preservation of the roadway or adjacent properties, restoration, repair and modification of safety bridges and other highway structures, and restoration of pavement and base to original condition by replacement, resurfacing, or pavement grooving. Applicable permits are required for excavation or disposal of fill outside of the roadway prism. The following maintenance and alteration programs of the State Department of Transportation, or their equivalent conducted by local road departments, which do not result in an addition to or enlargement or expansion of the existing public road facility itself, shall not require a permit except as noted:

a. Flexible roadway program;

b. Rigid roadbed program;

c. Roadside maintenance program;

d. Roadway litter and debris program;

e. Vegetation control program;

f. Pavement delineation program;

g. Sign program;

h. Electrical program;

i. Traffic safety devices program;

j. Public service facility program except that a permit is required for construction of new facilities;

k. Landscape program;

l. Bridge and pump maintenance program;

m. Tubes, tunnel and ferry maintenance program;

n. Bridge painting program;

o. Miscellaneous safety projects; provided there is not expansion in the roadway or number of traffic lanes;

p. Major damage maintenance, repair and restoration;

q. Comparable minor alterations.

2. Public Utilities.

a. Natural Gas, Chilled Water and Steam Facilities.

i. Service Connections. The installation, testing and placement in service of the necessary piping and related components to provide natural gas, chilled water and/or steam service to development either exempted or approved under this title including:

(A) The extension of underground gas, chilled water and/or steam mains, except in marshes, streams or rivers, from terminus of existing main piping to proper location in front of customer’s property. The breaking and removal of pavement as necessary, open trenching or boring for installation of main piping, installation of mains and appurtenances, pressure testing for leakage, backfilling of open cuts, purging of air from piping and introduction of gas, chilled water and/or steam into newly installed piping. Restoration of pavement as necessary. Provision of cathodic protection as necessary.

(B) The extension of underground gas, chilled water and/or steam service piping from the main locations, except in marshes, streams or rivers, to the meter location on the customer’s property. All associated construction activities similar to those in Item (A) above.

(C) Construction and installation of the meter set assembly, generally above ground, on the customer’s property, including installation of associated valves, pressure regulator, meter and necessary piping to connect the gas, chilled water and/or steam service to the customer’s piping system.

(D) When necessary, installation of gas, chilled water and/or steam pressure regulation equipment and related components, to control pressure where the source of the supply is at a higher pressure than the pressure in the district distribution main system. Construction includes necessary excavation, installation of piping, valves, regulators, below ground vaults and related components.

(E) Installation of necessary cathodic protection facilities for main and service extension to new and existing customers.

ii. Distribution and Transmission Facilities.

(A) The operation, inspection and maintenance of distribution and transmission mains, services, meter set assemblies and district regulator stations. The conduction of leakage surveys, repair of leaks, handling of emergency or hazardous incidents, maintenance of supply pressure, inspection and adjustment of pressure regulators, operation of valves, location and marking facilities to help prevent damage to them and to provide for public safety.

(B) The installation, replacement, alteration, relocation or removal of piping and cathodic protection facilities as necessary due to corrosion, interference with other underground or surface construction, franchise requirements, mechanical damage, reinforcement to existing distribution systems to provide for increased usage. The isolation of piping segments or systems to provide emergency control and the restoration of service to the customer.

iii. Production and Storage Facilities. The performance of necessary maintenance, replacement, repair, relocation, abandonment and removal work to gas storage facilities, chilled water and/or steam plant facilities, mechanical equipment including prime movers and pumping equipment, chilled water and/or steam production facilities, gas and oil processing facilities, pollution control facilities, cooling towers, electric equipment, controls, gas injection and withdrawal wells, and other miscellaneous plant and pipeline structures. The installation of any required new safety devices and pollution control facilities within existing structures or equipment or where land coverage, height, or bulk of existing structures will not be increased.

iv. Miscellaneous Activities. The performance of necessary maintenance, repair, replacement, relocation, abandonment and removal work to pipeline roads, rights-of-way, fences and gates, sprinkler systems, landscaping, odorizing stations, telemetry equipment, lighting facilities, mechanical and electrical equipment, cathodic protection facilities and environmental control equipment.

v. Grading, Clearing, and Removal of Vegetation. Excluded activities shall not extend to the construction of any new roads to the site of the work. Applicable permits are required for: (a) grading an undisturbed area of greater than 500 square feet, (b) removal of trees exceeding 12 inches dbh or (c) clearing more than 500 square feet of brush or other vegetation unless the planning director determines the activity does not involve the removal of major vegetation. No permit shall be required for the removal of minor vegetation for maintenance or safety purposes (tree trimming, etc.)

b. Electric Utilities.

i. Generation Stations, Substations, Fuel Handling, Transportation and Storage Facilities and Equivalent Facilities. Repairs, maintenance, and minor alterations which do not increase the capacity of the facility or work required to supply increased demand of existing customer’s facilities in order to maintain the existing standard of service. Limitations on increased facility capacity, however, shall not be applied to repairs, maintenance or minor alterations to facilities, such as substations or generation stations which are constructed in a phased method of development which is designed to respond to the increased demands of customers within a service area. The installation of any required new safety devices and pollution control facilities within existing structures or equipment or where land coverage, height or bulk of existing structures will not be increased.

ii. Transmission and Distribution and Communication Facilities. The maintenance, replacement, or modification of existing overhead facilities, including the addition of equipment and wires to existing poles or other structures, right-of-way maintenance, and minor pole and equipment relocations. The installation, testing and placement in service of power line extension facilities and supply points specifically required to provide service to development permitted or exempted under this title, or work required to supply increased demand of existing customers’ facilities in order to maintain the existing standard of service.

The installation, testing, placement in service, maintenance, replacement, modification or relocation of underground facilities or the conversion of existing overhead facilities to underground facilities; provided, that work is limited to public road or railroad rights-of-way or public utility easements (P.U.E.).

iii. Services. The installation, placement in service, maintenance, replacement, or relocation of electrical service or metering facilities to any development permitted or exempted under this title.

iv. Grading, Clearing and Removal of Vegetation. Excluded activities shall not extend to the construction of any new roads to the site of the work. Applicable permits are required for: (a) grading an undisturbed area of greater than 500 square feet, (b) removal of trees exceeding 12 inches dbh or (c) clearing more than 500 square feet of brush or other vegetation unless the planning director determines the activity does not involve the removal of major vegetation. No permit shall be required for the removal of minor vegetation for maintenance or safety purposes (tree trimming, etc.).

c. Telephone Utilities.

i. The repair and maintenance of existing damaged or faulty poles, wires, cables, terminals, load cases, guys and conduits, including the necessary related facilities, to restore service or prevent service outages.

ii. The placement of existing telephone facilities underground; provided such undergrounding shall be limited to public road or railroad rights-of-way or public utility easements (P.U.E.); and provided there is no removal of major vegetation and the site is restored as close as reasonably possible to its original condition.

iii. The placement of additional aerial facilities on existing poles.

iv. The removal of existing poles and facilities thereon, where new, replacing facilities have been placed underground.

v. The performance of work in connection with or placement of facilities to expand service to existing customers to serve new customers, including placement of underground service connections or aerial service connections from existing poles with any necessary clearance poles.

vi. The placement, construction, repair, and maintenance of cellular communications facilities that are architecturally integrated with an existing or proposed building consistent with the guidelines set forth in SBMC 17.60.120(G) (Commercial Transmission and Receiving Antennas).

vii. The removal of minor vegetation for maintenance purposes (tree trimming, etc.).

viii. Maintenance activities shall not extend to the construction of any new roads to the site of the work. Applicable permits are required for: (a) grading an undisturbed area of greater than 500 square feet, (b) removal of trees exceeding 12 inches dbh or (c) clearing more than 500 square feet of brush or other vegetation unless the planning director determines the activity does not involve the removal of major vegetation.

d. Other Public Utilities and Services, including Water, Sewer, Flood Control, City and County Public Works, and Cable T.V.

i. The repair or maintenance of existing facilities that do not alter the service capacity, installation of new or increased service to development permitted or exempted under this title.

ii. The placement of additional facilities on existing poles, or the placement of existing facilities underground; provided such undergrounding shall be limited to public road or railroad rights-of-way or public utility easements (P.U.E.); and provided there is no removal of major vegetation and the site is restored as close as reasonably possible to its original condition.

iii. The removal of minor vegetation for maintenance purposes (tree trimming, etc.).

iv. Maintenance activities shall not extend to the construction of any new roads to the site of the work. Applicable permits are required for: (a) grading an undisturbed area of greater than 500 square feet, (b) removal of trees exceeding 12 inches dbh or (c) clearing more than 500 square feet of brush or other vegetation unless the planning director determines the activity does not involve the removal of major vegetation. (Ord. 185 § 2, 1993)