Planning Commission & City Council Review

Final Specific Plan

In Spring 2012, the Planning Commission and City Council reviewed and recommended and approved the Specific Plan.

Planning Commission review/recommendation - April 30, 2012

The Planning Commission held a special meeting on Monday, April 30, to review and provide a recommendation on the Final Specific Plan, EIR, and associated actions. After receiving public input, the Planning Commission deliberated and recommended that the City Council approve the Specific Plan and related actions, with some recommendations for edits. For more information about this meeting, please see the following:

City Council review/action - June 5 and 12, 2012

The City Council reviewed the Planning Commission's recommendation in a public hearing on Tuesday, June 5. At this meeting, City Council approved the El Camino Real/Downtown Specific Plan and associated Final EIR, General Plan Amendments, Zoning Ordinance Amendments, and rezonings, and also amended the city's Master Fee Schedule to add a Specific Plan Preparation fee. On Tuesday, June 12, the City Council conducted second readings of ordinances, as required by law. For more information about these meetings, please see the following:

Draft Specific Plan

In Summer/Fall 2011, the Planning Commission and City Council provided detailed recommendations and direction to improve and refine the Draft Specific Plan. The City Council direction has been comprehensively reviewed by staff, and is being used by staff and the consultant to prepare the Final Specific Plan, to be released in Winter/Spring 2012. The consolidated City Council direction is available for review in a summary list and an annotated matrix, the latter of which includes preliminary staff analysis and discussion. Key elements of the Council and Commission direction included:
  • Downtown Parking
    In response to concerns from some downtown stakeholders, the Council directed that mixed-use buildings not be permitted on parking plazas, in order to preserve more surface parking. The Council also directed that Parking Plaza to be included as a potential parking garage site and that parking garage height be consistent with other buildings and preserve the village character of downtown.
  • Phasing of Downtown Public Space Elements
    In order to ensure that the proposed Santa Cruz Avenue sidewalk extensions and Chestnut paseo and market place are successful and do not negatively impact existing businesses or the Farmer's Market, the Council directed they be implemented in a phased approach, with future temporary installations used to evaluate whether they should be permanent.
  • Building Height/Bulk
    The Council directed that changes in the height and massing requirements be made in some areas in order to limit the perception of building size at the street edge.
  • Bicycle Improvements
    Building on recommendations from the Bicycle Commission, the Council directed that bicycle routes (shared auto-bike) be upgraded to dedicated bicycle lanes wherever feasible.

City Council

October 4, 2011
El Camino Real (other than ECR SE) review; review and wrap-up
September 20, 2011
Non-geographical topics (public benefit, FIA, bicycle/pedestrian network)
September 13, 2011
Downtown and El Camino Real (other than ECR SE zoning district) review
August 30, 2011
Introduction/overview; Council review process; Station Area and ER SE review
Note: City Council email correspondence is available publicly via the City Council Email log.

Planning Commission

August 22, 2011
Review and wrap-up
August 4, 2011
El Camino Real
July 28, 2011
July 21, 2011
Station Area
July 11, 2011
Overview/Background and public input