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Meeting Minutes

Hearing Room 400

City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

12:30 P.M. 


Regular Meeting


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



STAFF IN ATTENDANCEJohn Rahaim –Planning Director, Shelley Caltagirone, Pillar LaValley, Rich Sucre, Aaron Starr, Tim Frye – Preservation Coordinator, and Linda Avery – Commission Secretary



SPEAKERS:   Mike Buhler, SF Architectural Heritage, stated Heritage submitted a letter to the Planning Commission (PC) yesterday requesting continuance of Articles 10 & 11 on the PC calendar for tomorrow, December 8, 2011.  He stated the HPC’s detailed comments on Supervisor Wiener’s amendments had not been transmitted to the PC, and a series of new amendments by Supervisor Wiener have not yet been considered by the HPC.  He felt it was vital that PC have all HPC comments accurately conveyed before PC reviewed the proposed legislation.; GG Platt stated she was disappointed by the way the Planning Department had handled the matter [Articles 10 & 11] and wondered whether it was legal or not.



Preservation Coordinator Frye reported:

1.         Quarterly Report: Landmark Designation Work Program FY 2011-2012 – Following the report, he stated that he would answer any questions Commissioners might have.

Mr. Frye added the following items:

·                     Announced the next HPC hearing would be on January 18, 2012

·                     The Planning Department hosted its final Duboce Park Landmark District Community meeting in an open house format on December 7, 2011 to answer questions on the proposed level of review of Certificate of Appropriateness.  The meeting was held on the first floor of the Harvey Milk Center at 6 p.m.

·                     Supervisor Wiener, in conjunction with the Duboce Neighborhood Association, hosted his community meeting right after Planning Department’s open house meeting at 7:30 p.m. to answer questions raised by the community on the proposed designation.

·                     The Market Street Masonry District kick-off meeting was on December 14, 2011 at 6 p.m. at the French American School on Oak Street. It was the second district proposed as part of the HPC Landmark Designation Work Program.

·                     Delivered to HPC Commissioners a letter from the Office of Historic Preservation (OHP) regarding amendments to Articles 10 and 11.  In response to the letter, Planning Department would forward the amendments to OHP for their review.  OHP’s comments, hopefully received in time, would be brought before the January 18th HPC hearing for review.  HPC’s comments at the January 18th hearing would be forwarded to the Board of Supervisors and the Land Use Committee for consideration prior to adoption.  Supervisor Wiener would receive OHP’s comments as well.

·                     Delivered to HPC Commissioners Planning Staff’s memo regarding schedules for approvals and reviews of amendments to Articles 10 and 11.  He pointed out in the memo that on December 1, 2011 the Planning Department received Supervisor Wiener’s draft Ordinance for tomorrow PC’s packets.  PC would take up these amendments.

NOTE: Director Rahaim clarified the request of continuance - that once the calendar was out, the PC must act on any proposed continuance.  Staff could not continue something without the PC taking a vote on it.  The PC could choose to continue, to have a hearing and still continue, or to act on it.  He noted that there was strong misunderstanding to the legislation that had been forwarded to the PC and made these points to clarify the reasons why the Planning Department proceeded the way it did; that 1) after extensive discussion with staff, Supervisor Wiener’s legislation had substantives changes made to the original proposals in his memos; and 2) these changes would require the HPC’s additional review.  He said there was no reason to suggest that dialogue couldn’t be continued, and it was important for the PC to weigh in on the formal sets of legislation since HPC started its deliberation of Articles 10 & 11 two years ago. He also answered Commissioner Martinez’ question that what was sent to the PC was a combination of what HPC had approved and what Supervisor Wiener’s had proposed.



2.         President’s Report and Announcements - None

3.         Consideration of Adoption:

              a.        Draft minutes of Hearing of November 16, 2011


ACTION:         Approved

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

ABSENT:        Matsuda

4.         Disclosures

[On August 17, 2011, at a public hearing on its Rules and Regulations, the HPC approved continuing its practice of allowing Ex Parte Communications with required disclosure.]

Commissioner Wolfram received a call from Andrew Junius regarding 940 Grove Street, but did not speak to him.

Commissioner Damkroger spoke to G.G. Platt about Item 12 on today’s calendar; reviewed and wrote a letter of support for the DEIR with Fort Mason Center Board of Directors.

President Chase had communications with Andrew Junius on 940 Grove; with G.G. Platt and Mike Buhler regarding Articles 10 and 11.

5.         Historic Preservation Commission Holiday Gathering Date and Location

The Holiday Gathering would be at Blue Stem Brasserie, 1 Yerba Buena Lane, on Wednesday, December 21, 2011, from 1:30 – 3:30 p.m.

6.         Commissioner Comments/ Questions

President Chase announced that he could not attend tomorrow’s PC hearing.

Commissioner Wolfram stated he lost some confidence in the Planning Department by how Articles 10 and 11 had been forwarded to the PC for a blanket recommendation for approval when the legislation has some serious flaws.  He felt this process made any review standards optional and the legislation exempted a whole class of buildings from review under Article 11.  He found it very disappointing that there were no commentaries and pros/cons in the recommendation like other projects the HPC had reviewed.

Commissioner Martinez requested from the President to calendar on January 18, 2012 as an action item a discussion of Mr. Donaldson’s letter and a response to it, including the conditions under which the HPC thought the CLG status should be revoked.

President Chase was disappointed that some of the most significant changes to the historic section of the Planning Code didn’t get the same service from the Department as other projects HPC had reviewed in the past.  He was grossly disappointed that his Commission, together with the preservation, professional, real estate and advocacy communities, spent many hours and hours of their time to reconcile the issues around Articles 10 & 11 with Proposition J, and to just receive a simple sentence of recommendation from the Planning Department, he thought, was poor form.

Commissioner Martinez requested to place on January 2012 calendar, the re-appointment of a representative of this Commission to the Historic Preservation Funds Committee.  President Chase affirmed.



7.         2011.0651A                                                        (S. CALTAGIRONE: 415/558-6625)

1109-1121 GEARY STREET – south side between Van Ness Avenue and Franklin Street; Lot 018 in Assessor’s Block 0714 – Request for Certificate of Appropriateness to legalize an existing roof deck located at the second floor level at the rear of the subject apartment building. The subject property is Landmark No. 71 and is located within a NC-3 (Neighborhood Commercial Shopping Center District) Zoning District and 40-X Height and Bulk District.

(Continued from November 16, 2011)

Preliminary Recommendation:  Approval


ACTION:         Approved

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

ABSENT:        Matsuda


8.         2011.1205A                                                        (S. CALTAGIRONE: 415/558-6625)

3022 WASHINGTON STREET – north side between Baker and Broderick Streets; Lot 013 in Assessor’s Block 0981 – Request for Certificate of Appropriateness to add a room at the rear of the single-family residence at the basement level by partially roofing over an existing sunken courtyard. The subject property is Landmark No. 93 and is located within a RH-2 (Residential, House, Two-Family) Zoning District and a 40-X Height and Bulk District.

Preliminary Recommendation:  Approval


ACTION:         Approved

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

ABSENT:        Matsuda


9.         2011.0135A                                                                    (R. SUCRE: 415/575-9108)

111 TOWNSEND STREET, located on the south side of Townsend Street between 2nd and 3rd Streets, Assessor’s 3794, Lot 014.  Request for a Certificate of Appropriateness for primary and rear façade alterations and to replace the existing roof.  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 105-F Height and Bulk limit.

Preliminary Recommendation:  Approval


ACTION:         Approved

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

ABSENT:        Matsuda


10.       2011.1217A                                                                    (R. SUCRE: 415/575-9108)

301 BRANNAN STREET, located on the south side of Brannan Street between Stanford and 2nd Streets, Assessor’s 3788, Lot 037.  Request for a Certificate of Appropriateness to install a covered parking structure within a private alley on the subject lot.  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, Martinez, Wolfram, Damkroger, Chase

ABSENT:        Matsuda




11.       2010.0009A                                                        (S. CALTAGIRONE: 415/558-6625)

940 GROVE STREET - north side between Steiner and Fillmore Streets. Assessor’s Block 0798, Lot 010. Request for Certificate of Appropriateness The proposed project involves to rehabilitate the historic residence at the southern end of the lot; demolish the non-historic school buildings located at the northern end of the lot; subdivide  the lot to create four (4) individual lots; and, construct three (3) single-family buildings at the northern end of the lot. The subject property is a contributing building within the Alamo Square Historic District. The property is zoned RH-3 (Residential, House, Three-Family) and is in a 40-X Height and Bulk District.

Preliminary Recommendation: Approval with Conditions

PRESENTERS: Andrew Junius - represented Project Sponsor; Frederick Knapp – Knapp Architecture; [Presenter’s name not clear in the recording]

SPEAKERS in favor of the project:            Katrina Jankowski – Owner; John Goldman - Architect

SPEAKERS in opposition of the project:  Angela Pagano – Resident; Mike Buhler – SF Heritage; Bob Spjut – Alamo Square Neighborhood Association; Rose Hillson – Jordan Park Improvement Association

NOTE:            Speakers Michael Choi & Mark Topetcher – Owner & Architect respectively, generally supported the project but requested the roof overhang be brought back; Speaker Lisa Zahner - Alamo Square Neighborhood Association (ASNA), stated that the ASNA had some members who were for the project and some members who were against the project.

ACTION:         Approved with modifications to; 1) Re-center the gable over the north structure by pulling back the roof overhang 3-feet from the property line; 2) the three buildings are to have their own distinctive color palette; 3) to add a mullion to the bay in the north building; 4) treatment variation in the underside of the soffit; 5) variation in the gable end windows; and 6) restudy the color of the garage doors.

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

ABSENT:        Matsuda


12.       2011.0532T                                                                     (A. STARR: 415/558-6362)                       

USES, SIGNS, BUILDING FEATURES, FLOOR AREA RATIO, PARKING, AND COMPLIANCE IN SPECIFIED USE DISTRICTS - Review and Comment on a proposed Ordinance [BF 110548] amending the San Francisco Planning Code by repealing Sections 136.2, 136.3, 158, 187, 249.15, 263.2, 263.3, 602.25, 602.26, 607.3 and 607.4 and amending various other Code sections to as well as additional recommendations by Planning staff.  Specifically, the proposed Ordinance would (1) increase the amount of principally permitted parking spaces for dwellings in RC-4 and C-3 Districts; (2) make off-street parking requirements in the Van Ness Special Use District and RC-3 Districts consistent with those of RC-4 Districts; (3) eliminate minimum parking requirements for the Chinatown Mixed Use Districts and North Beach Neighborhood Commercial Districts; (4) allow exceptions from required parking under specified circumstances; (5) amend the restrictions on off-street parking rates and extend them to additional zoning districts, (6) revise sign, awning, canopy and marquee controls in specified zoning districts; (7) increase the permitted use size for limited corner commercial uses in RTO and RM districts, and allow reactivation of lapsed limited commercial uses in R districts; (8) revise the boundaries of and modify parking and screening requirements in the Washington-Broadway and Waterfront Special Use Districts; (9) modify controls for uses and accessory uses in Commercial and Residential-Commercial Districts; (10) permit certain exceptions from exposure and open space requirements for historic buildings; and (11) modify conformity requirements in various use districts; adopting findings, including environmental findings, Section 302 findings, and findings of consistency with the General Plan and the Priority Policies of Planning Code Section 101.1.

SPEAKERS:   Rose Hillson, Member of Jordan Park Improvement Association, was not certain the proposed legislation applies only to Articles 10 & 11 buildings, and was concerned that the expanded role of the Zoning Administrator (ZA) to waive or modify open space and exposure requirements could create a blanket authority to residential areas as well; [Eric Sukafuda], Richmond Community Association, commented that the proposed legislation should not allow the delegation of authority to the ZA to permit group housing without conditional use; the ZA not be allowed to permit off-site publically accessible open space for group housing; that the ZA shouldn’t be allowed to raise density limits; Mike Buhler, SF Heritage, supported incentives that encourage adaptive reuse and rehabilitation of historic resources and recommended the City of Portland as an incentive model.

ACTION:         Continued to January 18, 2012 and directed staff to draft letter to the PC to state the HPC had reviewed the proposed legislation but needed more information to complete the review.

AYES:             Hasz, Johns, Wolfram, Damkroger, Chase

NAY:                Martinez

ABSENT:        Matsuda

13.       2011.1173[F                                                                   (R. SUCRE: 415/575-9108)

            EXTENSION OF F-LINE STREETCAR SERVICE TO FORT MASON.  Request for Review and Comment on a draft Memorandum of Agreement prepared by National Park Service (the lead agency) for Section 106 Review of the proposed extension of the F-Market & Wharves Line (F-Line) from Fisherman’s Wharf through the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park and Golden Gate National Recreation Area in San Francisco, California. This agreement addresses the project’s impact on historic resources, and outlines stipulations for the treatment of historic properties.

Preliminary Recommendation:  Provide recommendation to Planning Director to engage as a signatory on MOA with the National Park Service, Federal Transit Administration, State of California Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO), and San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (Muni).

PRESENTER: Lee [Tursis], the National Park Service from Denver, gave an overview of Section 106 compliance process.


ACTION:         The HPC directed staff to write a letter in support of the Planning Department’s involvement in the project.  HPC recommended the Department be involved as an integral party in the process to  insure compatibility of the design of the platforms, shelters and landscapes.

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

ABSENT:        Matsuda


14.       2011.0841C                                                                     (R. SUCRE: 415/575-9108

180 TOWNSEND STREET, located on Brannan Street between 2nd and 3rd Streets, Assessor’s Block 3788, Lot 013.  Request for Review and Comment regarding the proposed project, pursuant to Planning Code Section 803.9(a). The proposed project includes conversion of approximately 15,001 sq ft from retail to office. The subject property is listed as a contributor to the South End Historic District, which is listed in Article 10 of the San Francisco Planning Code. It is located within the SLI (Service/Light Industrial) Zoning District, and a 65-X Height/Bulk Limit.  Recommendation: The Historic Preservation Commission may draft comments to the Planning Commission regarding the proposed use and its ability to enhance the feasibility of preserving the historic building.

PRESENTER: David Silverman on behalf of the ownership of the building and the applicant


ACTION:         Approved

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

ABSENT:        Matsuda




The minutes was proposed for adoption at the Regular Meeting of the Historic Preservation Commission on Wednesday, January 18, 2012.

ACTION:           Approved

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

Last updated: 1/24/2012 2:20:43 PM