Poway council rejects two planning appeals
By Steve Dreyer
Neighborhood disputes involving the proposed placement of a manufactured home and the significant expansion of another home were aired at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting.
In both cases, neighbors were appealing decisions by city staff to allow the proposals to proceed. Mayor Don Higginson said it was the first in at least 10 years that anyone had appealed such decisions to the council.
Both appeals were denied.
By a 4-0 vote Mercedes Jauregui will be allowed to place a manufactured home on a half-acre lot at the north end of Ann-O-Reno Drive. The council later voted 3-1, with Councilman Dave Grosch in opposition, to permit Muntazir and Nazira Mehdi to add a 3,971-square-foot, two-story addition, a 2,252-square-foot basement, a 210-square-foot garage and a rooftop deck onto an existing two-story home at 12343 Spyglass Terrace.
Councilman Jim Cunningham was absent from the meeting.
In the Ann-O-Reno matter, four neighbors appealed the decision and several more attended the meeting to protest placing what they alternately called a “trailer” or “mobilehome,” on the small lot. They contended that the box-like design of the unit conflicted with the ranch-styled homes on the street and wondered why the lot was zoned Rural Residential C (RR-C) when city codes require one-acre lots for that designation.
Planning Director Richard Whipple said the legal lot was created prior to the city’s incorporation in 1980 and its adoption of the Subdivision Map Act.
Jauregui, the applicant, said she was retiring from her federal job and wanted to have her dream home in Poway. While the proposal approved by city staff called for the relocation of an existing unit, she said she was now exploring the possibility of buying a new manufactured home which would be attached permanently to a foundation. The home, she said, would be “comparable or better” than existing homes on the street.
Councilman John Mullin noted that as long as all city rules are being met, the council really has no grounds to prevent the project to proceed.
The same line of reasoning was used by a majority of the council in turning down the appeal of the Spyglass Terrace expansion plan. Several neighbors complained that the proposed doubling of the size of the home, to 7,563-square-feet, would make it out of a proportion when compared to the three other homes on the street. They noted existing on- and off-street parking problems with the home, the conversion of a garage into livable space without city permits and questioned whether the owners might be using part of the home for business purposes.
The aesthetics argument convinced Grosch to support the appeal. The expanded home, he said, would be too out of proportion with the others on the street.
In other matters, the council:
• Approved the city-submitted conditional use permit to make permanent the Poway Farmer’s Market, held from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. each Saturday on Midland Road, between Adrian and Edgemoor streets. The council last summer approved trying out for one year the idea of moving the market from an overflow parking lot nearby to the street, which is closed off during market hours.
• Gave final approval to an ordinance governing the placement of amateur radio antennas in the city.
• Approved a tentative tract map and specific plan amendment for the 41-lot, single-family, master-planned Hidden Valley Ranch development on 420 acres on Old Coach Road, north of the Blue Sky Ecological Reserve. Ed and Barbara Malone, the applicants, sought changes to a plan approved in 2003. These include the downsizing and relocation of eight lots and the moving of a trail. Plans call for the project to be developed in three phases, although no time line was discussed Tuesday night.
• Were told that a special council meeting will be held on Tuesday, Sept. 9 where plans for the proposed Michael Cafagna Community Center, in Community Park, will be discussed.
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