Legislative Public Meetings

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File #: 18-0724   
Type: Report to Board/Commission Status: Passed
Meeting Body: Planning Commission
On agenda: 1/14/2019
Title: Consideration of Useable Open Space in Required Front Yards: Forward a Recommendation to the City Council to Introduce an Ordinance to Amend Section 19.37.100 (Usable Open Space Design Requirements) of Chapter 19.37 (Landscaping, Irrigation and Useable Open Space) and Section 19.12.160 ("O") of Chapter 19.12 (Definitions) of the Sunnyvale Municipal Code, and Find that the Action is Exempt from CEQA Pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Section 15061(b)(3). (Study Issue)
Attachments: 1. Reserved for Report to Council, 2. Study Issue Paper, 3. Draft Ordinance, 4. UOS Regulations from the Sunnyvale Municipal Code, 5. Summary of Approved Projects with a UOS Deviation, 6. Open Space and UOS Regs from other Jurisdictions, 7. Staff Presentation 20190114 (18-0724).pdf
Related files: 19-0152
REPORT TO PLANNING COMMISSION

SUBJECT
Title
Consideration of Useable Open Space in Required Front Yards: Forward a Recommendation to the City Council to Introduce an Ordinance to Amend Section 19.37.100 (Usable Open Space Design Requirements) of Chapter 19.37 (Landscaping, Irrigation and Useable Open Space) and Section 19.12.160 ("O") of Chapter 19.12 (Definitions) of the Sunnyvale Municipal Code, and Find that the Action is Exempt from CEQA Pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Section 15061(b)(3). (Study Issue)

Report
REPORT IN BRIEF
Since 2005, the Planning Commission has reviewed and approved nine development applications that included a request for a deviation to allow useable open space (UOS) in the required front yard. The Planning Commission sponsored a study issue (Attachment 2) to evaluate the existing UOS regulations and consider amendments that may allow UOS to be provided in the required front yard for multi-family residential development projects.

UOS is a requirement for all duplex and multi-family residential developments, and generally refers to open space that is intended for both active and passive activities. There are specific size and dimension requirements per unit for UOS within a development project. Although UOS may contribute towards the minimum landscaped area of the site, it is not currently allowed within the required front yard of a property.

Staff recommends that the Planning Commission make a recommendation to the City Council to: introduce an ordinance to amend Chapter 19.37 (Landscaping, Irrigation and Useable Open Space) and Section 19.12.160 ("O") of Chapter 19.12 (Definitions) of the Sunnyvale Municipal Code, and find that the action is exempt from CEQA pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Section 15061(b)(3). The recommendation would eliminate the requirement that prohibits UOS in required front yards for duplex and multi-family residential development projects. Removal of this regulation would provide applicants with clear development ...

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