Planners Send Developer Back to the Drawing Board on 3 Story Project

The first draft of plans for a housing project on 16th Street, which included three story buildings, were rejected by members of the Ramona Community Planning Group last week.

The plans for the Valley Park Apartments included 60 units with a density of 24 units per acre. This project draft was described as a first approach, and Lansing Companies said they came to see what the planning group thought of the draft.

No vote was taken, but consensus amongst planners that spoke was that they wouldn't support the three stories and the unit density was out of line with guidelines.

"The Fire Department doesn't have trucks that will hit three stories," said planner Kristi Manslof.

Three story buildings are against the Ramona Community Plan, and would have to be approved by the RCPG and county, according to the RCPG. 

One-time RCPG planner Chris Anderson spoke opposed to the project and cited the section of the Community Plan that says the maximum unit density per acre is 7.3 in Ramona Town Center unless it is senior or affordable housing.

"We were pulverized in the 80s when commercial zoning became apartments in town center," said Anderson. 

The project was described as using a California courtyard style, included a pool and recreation area The apartments would be in back of the lot, with single level buildings near the road. A tot lot area would also be constructed and an activity area for swimming, all far larger than required.

Lansing Companies told the group they'd be back with another draft based on their suggestions.

Also read: Planning Group Votes to Fund 67/Dye Intersection and Delay Other Projects
Drew S. December 14, 2013 at 12:47 PM
Too bad the proponents didn't bother to read the community plan before submitting their design to the planning group. It's actions like this that put the "Mis" in trust. Too many projects have come to Ramona with the sleight of hand tricks used to get higher density or avoid fulfilling obligations related to their project by changing the designation. One only needs to look at the apartments behind the Stars project (originally an affordable home ownership project but it was cheaper the make them apartments and do a condo conversion later, thereby bypassing conventions like under grounding utilities) or the remodel of Kentucky Fried Chicken, where the non-confirming bucket was supposed to come down as part of approval, and the contractor wrote on the plan that the bucket was approved. There are dozens and dozens of projects like this. Planners, watch this proponent carefully; there are likely more tricks up their sleeve.


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