Loading...
CD General Plan Report 2015CITY of Agenda Item No: 5. d n. Meeting Date: July 20, 2015 SAN RAFAEL CITY COUNCIL AGENDA REPORT Department: Community Development e ,�r 1jF Prepared by: Paul A. Jensen, AICP Community Development Director City Manager Approval: TOPIC: San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report SUBJECT: San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report - Review of San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report; City of San Rafael, project proponent; File No(s).: P15-001 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report provides a summary of the progress made over the past decade to implement policy and program actions and recommended updates based on input received from the City's department directors. The proposed program changes described in the Report will be used to prepare General Plan Amendments and Land Use Map edits, which will be brought to Planning Commission for review and recommendation to City Council for adoption. RECOMMENDATION: It is recommended that the City Council take the following action: 1. Open public hearing and accept public comment. 2. Review Planning Commission recommendations. 2. Review and comment on the San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report. 3. Accept report and direct staff to use the 10 -Year Status Report to proceed with General Plan Amendments. BACKGROUND: San Rafael's General Plan was adopted in 2004. Since then, the General Plan has been amended numerous times in response to changing circumstance and requirements that necessitated updates. These changes included the adoption of the Sustainability Element, update of Housing Elements for the 4th and 5th cycle RHNA, completion of Station Area Plans, loss of Redevelopment, as well as other actions taken through the course of implementing the General Plan. This 10 -Year Status Report was prepared with input from members of a Working Group consisting of representatives from many City departments. The State monitors General Plan implementation for cities throughout the State through Annual Progress Reports from cities, however San Rafael is a charter city and is not required to submit annual reports. This report reviews progress towards the implementation of General Plan policies and programs through a multiple year perspective FOR CITY CLERK ONLY File No.: /15 (ac,;O Council Meeting: Disposition: OW6r.,- 92,eg92L - SAN RAFAEL CITY COUNCIL AGENDA REPORT / Page: 2 that provides an opportunity to assess the approaches, challenges and accomplishments of General Plan implementation. The recommendations on program modifications in this report would serve as guidance for updates to General Plan Elements. All text changes to policies and programs would require a General Plan Amendment, which will follow this 10 -year review as a separate project. The San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report was completed and published in May 2015. The 10 -Year Status Report has been posted on City website and can be accessed via the following link: http://www.cityofsanrafael.org/commdev-planning-pro*-gp10yrpt. The 10 -Year Status Report to include a report text and an appendix. The text reports on actions that have occurred or been taken since the 2004 adoption of the General Plan including key accomplishments, significant changes (e.g., dissolution of the San Rafael Redevelopment Agency; the voter -approval of SMART). The text also provides a program evaluation for each General Plan element. The accompanying appendix (Appendix A) provides a more in-depth assessment of and recommendation for each program by General Plan element. A hard copy of the 10 -Year Status Report has been provided to the City Council under separate cover. It is important to note that the 10 -Year Status Report is not intended to open -up the General Plan for significant revision or re -structuring. The City will embark on the General Plan 2040 in several years, which will afford an opportunity to consider (if necessary or desired) a re -structuring of or major changes to the General Plan. ANALYSIS: Accomplishments Since the 2004 adoption of the General Plan, the City experienced the four-year Great Recession and the dissolution of the San Rafael Redevelopment Agency, which had a significant influence on quelling and/or dropping many community projects promoted by the General Plan, as well as staffing to undertake many of the programs. Nonetheless, during this period, there have been a number of important accomplishments. A list of the significant accomplishments is provided on pages 2 through 6 of the 10 -Year Status Report. These accomplishments include, among others: the successful outcome of a longstanding lawsuit against the owners of Contempo Marin Mobile Home Park, which allowed the City to retain rent control for mobile home parks; approval of over a dozen residential projects yielding 50 new, "inclusionary" (below-market rate) units; the adoption of a new Sustainability Element, which built off of the 2009 San Rafael Climate Action Plan; approval of development two new neighborhood parks; approval of a Community Engagement Action Plan; the investment in partnerships with other Marin jurisdictions to facilitate cross/shared services for cost efficiency; and a number of tasks and actions to prepare for SMART. Findings of 10 -Year Status Report Since the 2004 adoption of the General Plan, the City processed and adopted eight amendments to the Plan. Some of these amendments were project -specific (e.g., land use map and text changes for the Loch Lomond Marina development and Target store project), while several of the amendments were adopted to address a State mandate (two cycles of Housing Element updates). The most significant amendment to the General Plan occurred in 2011, when a new Sustainability Element was added to the Plan (see pages 7-9 of the 10 -Year Status Report). For the most part, the majority of the General Plan programs are being carried forward with little to no change, either due to the success of the program, continued work that is required, or opportunities to take action on the program over the 10 -year period. Changes to programs fall into three general categories: completion (and required removal), deletion, and revision. A brief description of the state of programs in each element of the General Plan is as follows: • Land Use — In general, programs in this element, both with long term and short term timeframes, can be continued with minor updates. Seven out of ten short term programs are being continued. The Land Use Element contains a number of actions that call for the implementation of long-term and ongoing actions, including the continued implementation residential and non-residential regulations, reuse of school sites, ensuring compatibility of land uses, providing adequate sites for uses, and encouraging lot consolidation. SAN RAFAEL CITY COUNCIL AGENDA REPORT / Page: 3 Continuing these programs would be appropriate. (See pages 11-12 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-1 through A-3) Housing — With the adoption of the 2015-2023 Housing Element on January 5, 2015, the policies and programs do not require further change. Through the Housing Element update process, policies and programs were evaluated and refined to meet projected housing needs. The section in this 10 -Year Status Report provides a look at how the current programs of the Housing Element were derived from the previous programs in the 2009-2014 Housing Element, whether programs were continued, modified or consolidated. (See page 12 of report text and Appendix A pages A-4 through A-17) • Neighborhoods Element — A number of the short-term programs in this Element have been completed or implemented, so it is recommended that they will be deleted from the General Plan. Some of the programs have been partially -implemented and are recommended to be carried over as short-term projects. (See pages 13-14 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-18 through A-25) Community Design — Programs in this Element best fit a long term timeframe. More than half of the programs were designated as long term programs. Of the ones planned for short-term implementation, action on programs has been on incremental improvements to achieve objectives. The completion of Station Area Plans and the Canalfront Conceptual Design plan have contributed to the implementation or partial implementation of programs. Work has been done to amend the zoning regulations for commercial and light/industrial districts, expand landscape requirements, and add lighting standards to the code. (See page 14 of the report text and Appendix A pages A 26 through A-29) Economic Vitality — Since the adoption of the 2020 General Plan in 2004, zoning ordinance amendments have broadened land use allowances for some commercial and industrial zoning districts. Additional efforts are also underway to streamline land use review and business permits. Other accomplishments that have been made include adoption of a mobile vendor ordinance, partial implementation of zoning amendments, and infrastructure improvements. See pages 14-15 of the report text Appendix A pages A30 through A32) Circulation Element — In general, progress on programs in this Element is made incrementally and continuously, although one new policy and program is being proposed to address analysis for environmental review. A new program responding to SB 743 is being proposed to introduce Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) as a method of analysis for environmental review. It would be appropriate to continue these programs and incorporate new policy C-5.1 Alternative Measurements of Traffic Impact and program C-5.1 a. VMT Analysis. (See pages 15-16 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-33 through A-38) • Infrastructure — Few major changes have been made within the Infrastructure Element as most programs are slated to be continued. Many actions are ongoing, such as seeking and establishing funding, working with the community and utility providers, and overseeing continued maintenance of infrastructure. One notable change is that a wireless telecommunication ordinance was adopted.(See page 16 of the report text and Appendix A pages A39 through A-30) • Governance — Few changes are proposed in the Governance Element. Two programs have been completed and two require minor text amendments. It would be appropriate to continue the programs in the Element, which promote inclusion, community participation, and City leadership. (See pages 16-17 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-41 through A-42) • Sustainability — Numerous accomplishments have been made in the Element. Ten programs have been completed in the Sustainability Element, which include an ordinance for charging stations in private facilities; a wind and solar energy ordinance; green building regulations; parking lot landscaping standards; a construction debris management ordinance; a single -use bag ordinance; a commercial and SAN RAFAEL CITY COUNCIL AGENDA REPORT / Page: 4 multifamily recycling ordinance; green purchases; and energy audits. (See pages 17-18 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-43 through A-52) • Culture and Arts — About half of the short-term programs have been completed. Further action mostly requires removing the completed programs from the General Plan. (See page 18 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-53 through A-55) • Parks and Recreation — Most programs are proposed for continuation. With the completion of two programs, residents can access pools in San Rafael schools and the community has access to Terra Linda Community Garden and Canal Community Garden. Securing funding sources will be a continuing action required for many of these programs. (See page 19 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-56 through A-58) • Safe — The Element contains mostly long-term programs. Some amendment changes would be required, such as recognizing that DART has been replaced by CERT. (See pages 19-20 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-59 through A-60) • Noise — Most programs in the Element are addressed in the long term, since many noise mitigation measures focus on ongoing review and project evaluation. One completed program allows residential and mixed use in office and commercial zoning districts. (See pages 20-21 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-61 through A-62) • Open Space — There are no short term programs for this Element (See page 21 of the report text and Appendix A page A-63) • Conservation — Most programs will remain as ongoing or long-term programs, and short-term programs generally would be continued. Accomplishments contributing to several ongoing projects include the adoption of a construction and demolition waste diversion ordinance; development of a zero waste goal and strategic plan; and formation of a "Green Team" to promote green programs at City facilities. (See pages 21-22 of the report text and Appendix A pages A-64 through A-67) • Air and Water Quality Element — Programs in the Element may be continued with little change, as most involve ongoing actions like response to detrimental impacts in development review, outreach to the public, or cooperation with outside agencies. An ordinance regulating fireplaces and wood -burning stoves has been completed, and the program is proposed for removal. (See page 22 of the report text and Appendix A page A-68) Planning Commission Review and Recommendations On June 9, 2015, the Planning Commission reviewed the 10 -Year Status Report and accepted public comment. There are no written minutes from the meeting, as the actual meetings are now video archived on the Granicus system. The actual proceedings of the Planning Commission meeting can be viewed by going to www,cityofsanrafael.org/meetings and navigating to the video archives. The Commission ultimately accepted the report, but offered the following comments. Each comment is followed by a staff response: 1. Economic Vitality Element Policy EV -8b — The Commission inquired why this program (regarding the City's assistance in identifying a location for a Day Laborer center) was being recommended for removal/deletion. The program currently in the General Plan states: "EV -8b. Day Laborers. Assist in identifying an appropriate and convenient location for a center for the employment for day laborers who provide a ready and accessible source of labor for construction, landscaping and maintenance." SAN RAFAEL CITY COUNCIL AGENDA REPORT / Page: 5 Staff Response — Some years back, Legal Aid of Marin and the Canal Alliance, in participation with other community organizations, developed a pilot program to establish a day laborer center in East San Rafael. The center operated for two years. The pilot program provided many insights into understanding the necessary components for operating a successful center, including economic sustainability and self -governance. At the end of the two year pilot period, the program sponsors decided to discontinue the program. In addition, the City staff position that was dedicated to proactively lead the effort to establish a day laborer center was eliminated in 2008. Further, this project has not been on the City's work plan or on the City Council's list of goals and objectives for a number of years. For these reasons, it was recommended that the program be eliminated. In the event a proposal was pursued to establish and/or develop a day laborer center, the City would accept applications and consider the project on its merits. 2. SMART and effect on the City and Station Area Planning — The Commission expressed concern about the "ripple effect" that the SMART operations will have on the community, in all facets of life and all elements of the General Plan (urban design, neighborhood, circulation). Staff Response — Staff concurs that the SMART operation may have communitywide impacts. However, the purpose of the 10 -Year Report is to evaluate the progress of the General Plan 2020 and the policies and programs that were adopted in 2004. The report identifies the programs that have been completed, which are recommended to be deleted, as well as the progress of and changes to other programs. At present, the General Plan 2020 contains several policies and programs that are specific to SMART, which are in the Circulation Element. As noted in the 10 -Year Status Report, several of the programs have been implemented, which include the completion of two Station Area Plans. An evaluation of the effects of SMART will occur after the rail service is in full operation. Following full operation of SMART, updated traffic counts and transportation modeling will be completed. As the City will embark on the preparing General Plan 2040 in several years, the evaluation of the SMART operations will be timely and may influence potential changes in General Plan policies and programs. 3. Station Area Planning — Commissioners commented that the City should be more proactive and forward thinking to anticipate the potential impacts of SMART and begin to implement the direction recommended in the Downtown Station Area Plan and the Civic Center Station Area Plan. Specifically, these Plans recommend zoning and other policy changes that will prepare for growth and development once SMART is in operation. Staff Response - The Station Area planning efforts provided a vision and objectives that are supported by policies and programs throughout the General Plan. The planned General Plan Amendments as identified in the 10 -Year Status Report will continue to address and pursue that direction. It is anticipated that an update to the City's zoning ordinance will be required to further the Station Area Plan(s) objectives and implementation actions. Staff noted that further zoning ordinance amendments have to be programmed and prioritized each year based on staff resources and budget allocated to the Community Development Department. 4. Homelessness — Commissioners commented on the topic of homelessness. Similar to comments made about SMART, it was noted that that there too few policies or programs in the General Plan 2020 addressing the homeless issue and its effects on various facets of quality of life. Staff Response — As is the case with the comments on the impacts of SMART, homelessness was not as prevalent or in the forefront as a City issue when the General Plan 2020 was being prepared and reviewed (2000-2004). Therefore, General Plan 2020 contains limited policies and programs related to homelessness. As noted in the response to #2 above, the City will embark on preparing General Plan 2040 in several years, which, at that time additional policies or program may come out of the community workshops and visioning process. SAN RAFAEL CITY COUNCIL AGENDA REPORT / Page: 6 5. Affordable Housing — Commissioners commented that with the dissolution of the San Rafael Redevelopment Agency and the loss of housing set aside monies has significantly impacted options for achieving affordable housing. Commissioners recommended that General Plan Amendments that are pursued to address the 10 -Year Status Report should further reinforce or highlight strategies to address the need for affordable housing in San Rafael. Staff Response - The City's updated 2015-2023 Housing Element includes many policies and programs that address affordable housing and homelessness. As part of the follow-up General Plan Amendments, the text for these policies/programs will be reviewed to determine if some additional reinforcement efforts can be incorporated. Environmental (CEQA) Review: The 10 -Year Status Report is classified as a feasibility or planning study, which is Statutorily Exempt from the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) under Article 14 CCR Section 15262 (Feasibility and Planning Studies). The 10 -Year Status Report does not propose or authorize any changes to the General Plan 2020; rather, it presents recommendations, which will be subject to environmental review. Next Steps: The recommendations presented in the report text and Appendix A will require text and map amendment to the General Plan 2020. Following Council review of the 10 -Year Status Report, staff will proceed with preparing General Plan Amendments, which will require public hearings and review by the Planning Commission and City Council. COMMUNITY OUTREACH AND PUBLIC NOTICING: Notice of this meeting was mailed to all homeowners/neighborhood associations in the City, the Federation of San Rafael Neighborhoods and the North San Rafael Coalition, as well as the Chamber of Commerce 15 days prior to the Planning Commission and this City Council meeting. A brief summary of the 10 -Year Status Report was presented to the Federation of San Rafael Neighborhoods and the North San Rafael Coalition at a monthly meeting with the City. Lastly, as noted in the Background section of this agenda report, the 10 -Year Status Report was posted on the City's web site for people to review and comment, nearly one month before the Planning Commission meeting. FISCAL IMPACT: There are sufficient funds in the General Plan Special Revenue Fund (Revenue Fund #218) to support the cost to prepare this 10 -Year Status Report and the follow-up tasks to complete the recommended General Plan Amendments. Funds from this special revenue account have been used for supportive consultant services to complete the 10 -Year Status Report. OPTIONS: The City Council has the following options: 1. Direct staff to make further changes to the 10 -Year Status Report and return to City Council, or 2. Reject the 10 -Year Status Report. RECOMMENDED ACTION: Accept report and direct staff to proceed with General Plan Amendments ATTACHMENTS: Correspondence Received to Date San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report, Public Review Draft, May 2015 (Previously distributed to the Council) From: Raffi Boloyan Sent: Friday, July:1.0, 2015 8.52 AM To: Gary Robards Cc: Damon M Connolly; Clark, Susannah; Chris Thomas; Christine Gimmler; Linda Levey; (Cate Colin; Paul Jensen; Raffi Boloyan Subject: RB: San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report Thank you fuer your comments, Your email will be included in the City Council's packet, You raise very good points and we appreciate your attention to traffic matters in San Rafael. As you can probably appreciate, our General Plan 2020 that was adopted in 2004, included many policies and programs to be implemented through the life of the Plan (approximately 15-20 years). As you probabiy saw by reading the report, the City has been very .successful and has achieved a great deal in implementing many parts of the plan. But, as you also saw, there are still many programs and policies that still need to be implemented or continue to be implemented. Many of those that are still outstanding, were either identified as long term goals, or are ones that would require funding or staffing, for which the City must balance with all competing tasks, on-going operations, and funding constraints Your particilpatioin and comments will help highlight your thoughts on this matter to let the Council know that you see this task as a priority so that this can be built in to the Public Works Department's work plans for the upcoming year(s). Thanks again for your participation in the review of the General Plan 7020 10 year report Raffi Boloyan Raffi Boloyan CITY OF SAN IRAFAFI... Planning Manager CCTMI'viLb'f+NITY DEVELOPM DFPAR'I"Mlf NT PLANNING DIV00N 1400 5rr, Ave SACT RAFAEL, CA 94901 TEII...: (41.5) 485-:3095 FAX: (41.5) 485-3184 IFirorn: Gary Robards Sent: Thursday, July 09, zu15 10:08 PM To: Raffi Boloyan Cc: Damon M Connolly; Clark, Susannah; Chris Thomas; Christine Gimmler; Linda. Levey; Kate Colin Subject: San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report Raffi Boloyan San Rafael Planning Manager Re: San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report Dear Mr, Boloyan, It has been 10 1/2 years since the General Plan was adopted which included Exhibit 21 "Major Planned Circulation Improvements". On page 170 of the General Plan it states that Public Works "on a regular basis, monitor and update the list" [Exhibit 21]. To the best of my knowledge this update has never been done and on page A34 of the 10 -Year Status Report it states that "Exhibit 21 and maps will need to be updated". The update for Exhibit 21 is long overdue. When is this update scheduled? I have been involved in trying to improve North San Pedro Traffic for a number of years with both the Santa Venetia Neighborhood Association and the San Rafael City Schools traffic committee headed by Chris Thomas. I also attended a April 30, 2015 meeting organized by Supervisor Damon Connolly regarding improving the the North San Pedro Road Interchange with Marin County and City public works officials discussing the problem and the challenges of fixing the interchange. When the schools are in session traffic backs up from Civic Center Drive to Venetia Valley School and beyond, Traffic studies and my own observations show that the problem is caused by the poorly designed Caltrans interchange. Two through westbound lanes through the interchange should be constructed to reduce westbound traffic backups on North San Pedro Road. The N San Pedro Rd Interchange is not on the existing San Rafael Capital Improvement Plan list (Exhibit 21) and should be added. The addition of this project to the CIP is a necessary step in planning, locating and receiving funding for the project and to identify that this is an existing problem so that the problem is considered in other planning studies such as the SMART Station Area Plan. This traffic backup is an existing problem of long standing and will only get worse with the proposed projects. The San Rafael City Schools Master Facilities plan proposes to reopen Old Gallinas School and add 24 classrooms with approximately 564 pupils and use this as a a feeder school for an expanded Venetia Valley Middle School . The Marin Jewish Community Center has approached the County to develop their properties under a Master Plan. I have heard few specifics about this other than the addition of a recreational pool and expansion of the Brandeis Hillel Day School. This is an important issue to our community. Gary E. Robards San Rafael, CA 94903 r�t7I�UR�\ ROUTING SLIP / APPROVAL FORM INSTRUCTIONS: Use this cover sheet with each submittal of a staff report before approval by the City Council. Save staff report (including this cover sheet) along with all related attachments in the Team Drive (T:) 4 CITY COUNCIL AGENDA ITEMS 4 YEAR 4 MEETING DATE 4 TOPIC Agenda Item # 5. 8 Date of Meeting: 7/20/2015 From: Paul Jensen Department: Community Development Date: Ciiclk here to enter a dale Topic: San Rafael General Plan 2020 10 -Year Status Report Subject: San Rafael General Plan 2020 10 -Year Status Report Type: ❑ Resolution ❑ Ordinance ❑ Professional Services Agreement ® Other: APPROVALS ® Department Director Remarks: ® Finance Director Remarks: Van Bach for Mark ® City Attorney Remarks: LG:No review required City Manager Remarks: M SAN RAFAEL CITY COUNCIL AGENDA REPORT / Page: 2 From: Gary Robards [ Sent: Thursday, July 09, 2015 10:08 PM To: Raffi Boloyan Cc: Damon M Connolly; Clark, Susannah; Chris Thomas; Christine Gimmler; Linda Levey; Kate Colin Subject: San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report Raffi Boloyan San Rafael Planning Manager Re: San Rafael General Plan 10 -Year Status Report Dear Mr. Boloyan, It has been 10 1/2 years since the General Plan was adopted which included Exhibit 21 "Major Planned Circulation Improvements". On page 170 of the General Plan it states that Public Works "on a regular basis, monitor and update the list" [Exhibit 21 ]. To the best of my knowledge this update has never been done and on page A34 of the 10 -Year Status Report it states that "Exhibit 21 and maps will need to be updated". The update for Exhibit 21 is long overdue. When is this update scheduled? I have been involved in trying to improve North San Pedro Traffic for a number of years with both the Santa Venetia Neighborhood Association and the San Rafael City Schools traffic committee headed by Chris Thomas. I also attended a April 30, 2015 meeting organized by Supervisor Damon Connolly regarding improving the the North San Pedro Road Interchange with Marin County and City public works officials discussing the problem and the challenges of fixing the interchange. When the schools are in session traffic backs up from Civic Center Drive to Venetia Valley School and beyond, Traffic studies and my own observations show that the problem is caused by the poorly designed Caltrans interchange. Two through westbound lanes through the interchange should be constructed to reduce westbound traffic backups on North San Pedro Road. The N San Pedro Rd Interchange is not on the existing San Rafael Capital Improvement Plan list (Exhibit 21) and should be added. The addition of this project to the CIP is a necessary step in planning, locating and receiving funding for the project and to identify that this is an existing problem so that the problem is considered in other planning studies such as the SMART Station Area Plan. This traffic backup is an existing problem of long standing and will only get worse with the proposed projects. The San Rafael City Schools Master Facilities plan proposes to reopen Old Gallinas School and add 24 classrooms with approximately 564 pupils and use this as a a feeder school for an expanded Venetia Valley Middle School . The Marin Jewish Community Center has approached the County to develop their properties under a Master Plan. I have heard few specifics about this other than the addition of a recreational pool and expansion of the Brandeis Hillel Day School. This is an important issue to our community. Gary E. Robards 40 Crestview Drive San Rafael, CA 94903