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Meeting Minutes 

Hearing Room 400

City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

12:30 P.M.


Regular Meeting 

COMMISSIONERS PRESENT:         Chase, Damkroger, Hasz, Johns, Martinez, Matsuda, Wolfram


STAFF IN ATTENDANCEJohn Rahaim – Planning Director, Rich Sucre, Aaron Hollister, Matt Weintraub, Tim Frye – Preservation Coordinator, and Jonas Ionin – Acting Commission Secretary







Acting Preservation Coordinator Frye

1.         Discussion of trash enclosures on 21st Street in the Liberty Hill Landmark District within Article 10 districts – Preservation staff and Zoning & Compliance staff visited the site because a member of the public, Mr. Hoffman, had an issue with the trash enclosure located in the front yard set-back.  Staff observed and determined that the enclosure was moveable and not attached to the landmarked structure, would not require a building permit, and therefore does not require a Certificate of Appropriateness.

Speaker:        Mr. Hoffman, Resident adjacent to 21st Street, said he didn’t understand staff’s conclusion. The trash managed right adjacent to his entry way was problematic and a nuisance for people to enter. He was bothered by the loophole created.  He produced requirements from DPW for trash enclosures in the front yard that have to be fixed, and Passmore’s planning general guidelines.

NOTE:            After some discussion, Commissioner Martinez stated that Mr. Hoffman might want to pursue a judgment from DPW about this particular trash enclosure.  At this time, it is not under the purview of the HPC since the trash enclosure was not fixed in place and would not require a Certificate of Appropriateness through a building permit.  If it was determined by DPW in the future that it should be fixed in place, then it might have an issue with planning.

2.         Short update on Planning Commission hearing on the revised Articles 10 and 11 –The Planning Commission had continued the hearing of Articles 10 & 11 from April, to May, and then June.  If the date changed again, staff would let HPC know so a representative could be appointed to attend the Planning Commission meeting or to have a prepared document from HPC available for the hearing.

Mr. Frye added the following report:

·                     He summarized the Planning Department (Planning) presentation on Monday to the Land Use Committee’s hearing on the effects of preservation policies on other city’s policies - Planning made a presentation on where the codes and General Plan regulate historic preservation at a local level, how Planning’s policy requirements under CEQA fit within that review and when preservation policies are united with other policies identified by the Supervisors for discussion.  The Supervisors asked questions regarding ethnic and cultural diversity; the number of context statements devoted to cultural and ethnic history; and the process related to CEQA and surveys.  The Library, MTA, Recreation and Park Department, Mayor’s Office of Housing, and SF Architectural Heritage made their presentations.  They gave examples of preservation that worked well with other policies but did express frustration over Planning’s process and requirement under CEQA.

Commissioner Martinez commented that the one minute time allotted to speak at the hearing was inappropriate.  He gave his thoughts on the following: 1) Over the past 10 years, Planning has done an impressive job on ethnic history in various context statements.  More needs to be done in the areas of Black, Latino, and labor history; 2) that the surveys were written into the area plan after years of public outreach and meetings, they did not sprung up on people; 3) the HPC should discuss how to potentially improve relationships with other departments, including the SF Unified School District, which is responsible for a considerable number of historic resources; and 4) should look at CEQA process, which remained probably the most serious area for discussion.  He stated that HPC at some point should discuss specific issues that are clearly defined.  Director Rahaim suggested the discussion might be in a form of a conference or a symposium but would only do that if the commissioners think it’s productive.  The reason was that because he would need to raise some funds for it to happen.  Commissioners Damkroger, Martinez and Chase agreed it was a good idea.


3.         President’s Report and Announcements - None

4.         Disclosures - None

5.         Commissioner Comments/Questions

Commissioner Martinez 1) asked whether the HPC would comment on the environmental review on the Light Standards on Van Ness Avenue in the Civic Center Historic District.  Mr. Frye understood HPC would have review and comments under environmental review but not sure about the Certificate of Appropriateness and the limitations of HPC’s jurisdiction with MTA.  He would follow up and get back to the Commission; 2) used Mission Area Plan, SoMa Area Plan and Market/Octavia Area Plan as examples to clarify that policies for context based resource surveys and designation of cultural resources were written into the area plans.  The Planning Commission (PC) and the Board of Supervisors (BOS) adopted them.  Public outreach was conducted through the years.  The policies were not new to the neighborhood, PC or the BOS.


6.         2010.0936A                                                                  (R. SUCRE: (415) 575-9108)

699 SECOND STREET (aka 88 Townsend St) - northwest corner of 2ND and Townsend Streets, Assessor’s 3789, Lot 858.  Request for a Certificate of Appropriateness for one wall sign on 2nd Street façade.  The subject property is a contributing building to the South End Historic District and is located within the MUO (Mixed Use-Office) Zoning District with a 65-X Height and Bulk limit. 

Preliminary Recommendation:  Approval


ACTION:         Approved

AYES:             Hasz, Johns, Matsuda, Martinez, Wolfram, Damkroger, Chase


7.         2010.0973A                                                             (A. HOLLISTER (415) 575-9078)

            500 WASHINGTON STREET -  northwest corner of Washington and Sansome Streets, in Assessor’s Block 0196, Lot 023 - Request for a Certificate of Appropriateness to install a wireless telecommunications service facility operated by T-Mobile by adding six (6) panel antennas on the façade of an existing mechanical penthouse and four (4) equipment cabinets on the rooftop of the subject building.  The subject property is a non-contributory structure to the Jackson Square Historic District.  The subject building is located within a C-2 (Community Business) Use District, the Jackson Square Special Use District, the Washington-Broadway Special Use District No. 2 and a 65-A Height and Bulk limit.

Preliminary Recommendation: Approval.


ACTION:         Approved

AYES:             Hasz Johns, Matsuda, Martinez, Wolfram, Damkroger, Chase



8.        2011.0401U                                                             (M. Weintraub: 415/575-6812)

            INNER MISSION NORTH HISTORIC RESOURCE SURVEY - Informational presentation - The survey consists of: field survey information for approximately 2,009 individual properties; historic resource/non-resource evaluations for approximately 1,745 individual properties that are at least 50 years of age; and historic district evaluations of 13 areas that contain significant groupings of historic contributors. The study area covers approximately 30 square blocks and includes the northwest portion of the Mission Area Plan and a small portion of the Market & Octavia Area Plan. The general boundaries of the study area are: Duboce Avenue and Market Street to the north; 20th Street to the south; Folsom Street and Shotwell Street to the east; and Dolores Street to the west.

Preliminary Recommendation: No action required.

SPEAKERS:   Peter Lewis, Co-Chair of Mission Dolores Neighborhood Association (MDNA), felt that there are important buildings not identified as resources in the districts; that the survey broke up the neighborhood into smaller districts; that MDNA would work with Planning for an overlay to include some of the historic districts; and asked HPC for help to identify a larger district for nomination to the National Register; Lucia Bogatay, President of MDNA, commented that smaller districts seemed to be narrow.  If the goal was balancing development, it seemed the best way to protect the fabric of the city would be to include broader districts.  She predicted going forward with lots of little districts was sort of a divide and conquer theory that would end up with one or two designated and the rest would languish; Peter Olson, Member of MDNA and Market Octavia Area Plan, was concerned about the district boundaries that cut down the middle of the streets and would leave off half of the community when both existed as a single community before and after the Earthquake and Fire.

ACTION:         Informational only – no action

NOTE:            Commissioner Martinez said an overlay that showed Mission Dolores survey boundaries might connect 4 to 5 small districts.  Commissioner Wolfram was concerned that there are many little districts and that it would be hard for them to move forward. He suggested attaching smaller ones to each other in the spirit of trying to make this happen.  Vice President Damkroger suggested an idea for consideration that uses conservation areas as a mean to provide a buffer that would hold historic districts together.  She said she has been a fan of larger districts but she recognized staff had done a great job in creating the defendable boundaries.  She thought it was important for staff to be able to make an argument about why the boundaries are where they are.  She and President Chase asked staff to be mindful when using language like adopted, designated, contributory and non-contributory in the report, for members of the public might not understand.  Commissioner Hasz enjoyed the small districts that carried their own theme but he also understood the context of the neighborhood.  The Commissioners briefly discussed California and National Register for the districts.



The minutes was proposed for adoption at the Regular Meeting of the Historic Preservation Commission on Wednesday, November 2, 2011.

ACTION:           Approved

AYES:              Hasz Johns, Matsuda, Martinez, Wolfram, Damkroger, Chase

Last updated: 11/15/2011 3:09:30 PM