McMansions on the menu again at Community Planning Association
by DAVE SCHWAB
Published - 07/17/15 - 03:44 PM | 0 0 comments | 32 32 recommendations | email to a friend | print
In July, La Jolla Community Planning Association (LJCPA) elected new board officers as well as hearing public testimony about encroaching “mansionization” in the community.

Board president Joe LaCava, who is running for the District 1 Council seat in 2016, officially stepped down, yielding to Cindy Greatrex. Greatrex assumed the presidency and control of the meeting. Bob Steck became the group’s new vice president, replacing Greatrex in that role.

During public testimony, Linda Van Zant, a La Jolla resident since 1981, complained that a redeveloped parcel at 754-758 Bonair St. near her residence went beyond stated redevelopments approved by the LJCPA by an 11-4-1 vote in September 2013.

The project asked for permitting and a variance to demolish an existing duplex and construct three, 3-story detached single-family residences ranging from 1,929 to 2,185 square feet on the 9,225-square-foot parcel. The variance was to maintain two curb cuts, where only one typically would be allowed.

“You guys (LJCPA) are the firewall for stopping what is happening (mansionization) in our community,” said Van Zant. “You’re caretakers for the rest of us, so you need to pay close attention.”

Van Zant said the group’s previously approved Bonair Project was an example of “bad caretaking.”

LCPA trustee Mike Costello noted there were “a lot of questions” with that Bonair redevelopment project. One of them, he said, involved a variance request for the project that some felt was “not warranted.” Costello added some also questioned whether the project’s scale was “out of community character.”

“I would volunteer to take a trip downtown and take the (building) plans and see what was actually done (construction) and compare them,” Costello said.

The group charged Costello with completing that task.

In other action:

• LJCPA heard a pitch from lobbyists campaigning in favor of the City of San Diego’s Climate Action Plan. That plan would require the city to reduce its carbon footprint, the total amount of greenhouse gas emissions caused by all potential sources, by 50 percent by 2035. That would be accomplished largely through switching from non-renewable fossil fuels to to alternative, renewable energy sources.

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