Thursday, May 17, 2018

• Planning Commission Meeting May 2018

There were a couple of items on the agenda worth going over from the May 2018 Planning Commission meeting. I'll also upload all the videos since the installation of the the chamber's video equipment has hit molasses going uphill in Winter speed. 

When it comes to official video at city meetings, the latest rumor suggests that September is when live streaming will start.

Now, if we juxtapose that information against the oft projected release dates of the city's updated website (which was talked about for years before the trigger got pulled), the safe bet is that live streaming will commence some time in Trump's second term... but I digress. 

2.1 Zoning Ordinance Amendment
This item was to help streamline the process where already approved projects seek a time extension before beginning construction.

I've never understood why a company would invest the time and money into a project, to design it and get it all the way through the process, to just sit on it for years and years.

One suggestion is that it can work to their advantage when they're sitting in a CPA's office in April, but that shouldn't be the concern of the city.

A legitimate reason could be downturns in the economy. I get that. The project's funding fell out, and they need more time to find other backers. 

Makes sense... but if after years you still can't scrape together the funds to move forward, then you should feel the heat of the clock ticking, and either break ground or face starting the process over again.

This ordinance is to make the process easier, to save money for the city —in staff time necessary to prepare for such a meeting. Again, seems reasonable to me, but if you listen to the video, at about the 8:45 mark, you'll hear Wildomar Planning Director Matt Bassi say, "... as well as cost savings to the developers."

Sorry, but the developers are the ones that are requesting the city spend time on their projects, and in these cases, long after they were supposed to be built and occupied. If they want an extension of time, mandate that every staff hour be paid for by them. It shouldn't be costing the taxpayers one additional dollar. 
(if that's already the case, then the point is moot to begin with)

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3.2 Extension of Time #3 Planning Commission review and consideration of a 2-year Extension of Time SEC of Bundy Canyon Road and I-15 Freeway

This was an interesting item in so far as when it came time for the vote, no one put a motion forward. There was the longest pregnant pause in human history (literally 20 seconds of dead air) before the silence was broken when Commissioner Langworthy asked, "I just have a question, when was the first extension given for that?"

It almost looked like this might not get approved, then the representative for the developer, Karine Kofdarali, told the commission that they had personnel issues due to health issues and had to start part of the process over.

After her explanation, the commission quickly voted to approve the time extension. For the full item, see the video below.

3.1 Breslin Family General Plan Initiation Proposal

This item took about half an hour. There were three public speakers that spoke their objections, and then the commission weighed in with their objections.

The spokesman for the Breslin family came up and basically threatened that if they didn't go along with this plan, they'd be looking to put in a wrecking yard, boat storage place, or some other such establishment on that land. 
(check the 20:00 minute mark of the video to hear him suggest such things)

Since it's just a GPIP, (and I'm not going to put my Mario and Princess Peach cartoon in this time, but you can click this link if you really want to see it again ☺) which is a bizarre dance where the applicant pokes his toe in the water to see how warm it is, before jumping all in with a formal request for a General Plan Amendment... I'm not going to bother with too many details on something that will never come about.

In short, they wanted to change the General Plan from EDR (Estate Density residential) to MHDR (Medium High Density Residential), or from 1 unit/2 acres 5-8 units/acre.
I counted 26 clusters, which they said would have 6 units apiece... basic math tells us that is 156 units in that area, but that far exceeds the numbers allowed with a MHDR designation.
According to the agenda packet, the project seeks to put between 80 and 134 units on about 17 acres of land... where with the current General Plan, with 1 unit per 2 acres, would allow about 8 units.

I get it, if I were the landowner, I'd want to squeeze as many dollar signs out of each acre too. Thing is, that's why we became a city, so that we would be able to control "spot zoning" attempts like this.

Commission Comments
  •  Veronica Langworthy: Our general plan is Estate Density Residential [in that area]. To change it to a Medium High Density Residential doesn't really fit in with our general plan. Typically we make conformity issues, where the zoning is not in conformity with the general plan, but to make such a drastic change to our general plan is not what I see for Wildomar.
  •  Kim Strong: I agree [with Commissioner Langworthy] we have to stay true to the general plan. There's been times that we've had to stay true to the general plan when we've not necessarily agreed with it, but I think we have to in this case as well.
  •  Michele Thomas: I agree [with the first two comments]. I have big concerns with the traffic study [...] this would be very inconvenient, it's a lot of homes, if they're apartments those are young families generally, they're driving to school. It's not a safe access, there's no way they can walk to school from this location. It's not safe, there're no sidewalks. 
  •  John Lloyd: The houses that surround this property, they have been relying that that area being Estate Density, it goes to Rural Mountainous [Density] afterwards. To put in condominiums in an area that wasn't designed for it, where it doesn't fit, it's not a good fit to me. I don't see it as something that we really need. We don't have a shortage of apartments on the books, at all. [...] I appreciate the time you guys took for the proposal, the sketches and designs, but I couldn't support this. 

3.3 Capital Improvement Program for Fiscal Year 2018/19: Planning Commission’s Annual Review of the Public Works Department 2018/19 Capital Improvement Program for General Plan Consistency.

Newsworthy points: 

• Clinton Keith road widening is 100% designed. It's a $7.5M project with about $3.6M ready to spend. Still no start date predicted.
• Palomar widening, the designing is at the 65% complete mark. Looking to phase the project in over time.
• Bundy Canyon interchange. This is a long term project that involves years of planning, dealing with CalTrans.
• New traffic signals associated with Bundy Canyon Road widening. When that goes forward, so will the new signals. 
   •   Bundy Canyon Road @ Sellers Road
   •   Bundy Canyon Road @ Monte Vista Road
   •   Bundy Canyon Road @ Oak Circle Drive
   •   Bundy Canyon Road @ The Farm Road
• Flood control/drainage, please see the video for details on the various items (starting at about the 5:30 mark of the video).
• Parks, next parks workshop will include the newly acquired 11 acres just south of David A. Brown school. 

Let me be the first to suggest that this park be named after the man that made it possible... Charles Tunstall Park has a nice ring to it.

• Trails, the Grand Avenue Multi-Use Trail is complete and the lines on the road will be painted within the next week or two. The city is working on getting the east side of Murrieta Trail opened for public use. Currently only the west side access road is readily available.

It was discussed that Grand Avenue will be striped as a two lane road from Corydon to Clinton Keith, which will affect the current lane count near the stop sign at Sheila. 
By my count, there are currently as many as five lanes at the intersection of Sheila and Grand.

Below is a short video that has the other bits and pieces of the meeting, including public comments. I'd prefer to post videos in chronological order, but that's not what Wildomar Rap is supposed to do... that's the job of the city.

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"Why don't you write books people can read?"
– Nora Barnacle to her husband James Joyce

Wildomar Rap is asked something similar by Mrs. Wildomar Rap at least once a week.

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