DATE: April 4, 2001

TO: Planning Commission

FROM: Gary Gillette, Planner
Community Development Department

FILE NO.: USE2001-00005

PROPOSAL: An Allowable Use permit to convert existing warehouse space to a manufacturing use and to construct new office and warehouse space along with a dock facility in a waterfront industrial zoning district.

 

GENERAL INFORMATION

Applicant: Jensen Yorba Lott, Inc.

Property Owner: Jim Triplette

Property Address: 2631 Channel Drive

Legal Description: ATS 17

Parcel Code No.: 7-B09-0-101-004-0

Site Size: 131,543 Square Feet
(55,000 Square Feet Uplands)
(76,543 Square Feet Tidelands)

Zoning: Waterfront Industrial

Utilities: CBJ Water and Sewer

Access: Channel Drive

Existing Land Use: Warehouse

Surrounding Land Use: North - Channel Drive/Egan Drive
South - Gastineau Channel
East - Warehouse
West - Industrial Barge Landing

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The applicant requests an allowable use permit to use an existing warehouse building for manufacturing uses. In addition, the applicant proposes to construct a second floor to the existing building to provide additional warehouse space and offices. The offices would be used by the owner of the building and business, thus accessory to the manufacturing and warehouse use. Once the second level office space is available the applicant would demolish an existing small building which currently serves as offices for the business. A dock for staging and barge loading would be constructed in a future phase of the project. The applicant anticipates constructing the dock structure within the next four to five years. The applicant’s narrative (see attachments) further describes the details of the proposed project. 

BACKGROUND

The Owner received an allowable use permit (AU-10-96) approved by the Planning Commission on May 14, 1996 to construct a warehouse building. The Design Review Board approved a design review permit (DR-26-96) for the project on April 15, 1996. The Building Division issued a building permit for the warehouse facility on June 27, 1996.

The Owner began occupying the building without a certificate of occupancy and without complying with the conditions of the AU or design review permits. On August 6, 1998 the Community Development Department issued a notice of violation for non-compliance with permit requirements of the Design Review Permit, Allowable Use Permit, and Building Permits. The Owner responded that he was in negotiations to purchase adjacent property, which would change his plans for development of the property. Negotiations for the adjacent property did not materialize.

On October 7, 1998 the Building Official issued a notice and order regarding the building. The Owner was cited for occupancy without required scheduled inspections and without final inspection and certificate of occupancy. The Owner indicated that his architect would submit plans in January 1999, which would address the building code and land use concerns.

On October 27, 1999 the Building Official once again issued a notice and order regarding the building because no plans had been submitted as indicated previously. The order indicated that plans needed to be submitted by November 22, 1999 or vacate the structure until the facility is properly permitted, inspected and approved.

On November 23, 1999 a building permit application was submitted by the applicant for a mezzanine addition, installation of a toilet, and construction of accessory buildings which were all completed without permits. The owner and applicant have met with staff a number of times to resolve the non-compliance issues. The application for an allowable use permit for the manufacturing use, offices, warehouse space, and a dock facility, which is the subject of this staff report, will clear up the non-compliance issue of use if approved by the Commission and constructed by the owner.

As of March 2001 the Building Division has inspected the facility and the owner now has completed the necessary building code issues. There remains outstanding land use issues, however the proposed project would complete the building and site thus resolving those issues. The owner and applicant have agreed in principal to construction scheduling conditions that would assure elements of the overall plan would be completed prior to final occupancy certification. 

ANALYSIS

Project Site - The site of the proposed project is located at 2631 Channel Drive east of the DIPAC hatchery facility. It is a waterfront site and includes submerged tidelands. The upland portion of the site is 55,000 square feet while the tidelands portion accounts for 76,543 square feet. A bulkhead/retaining wall was built and the uplands portion of the site was filled prior to construction of the existing warehouse building. The proposed dock facility would be outward of the existing bulkhead and be constructed on pilings. The site is flat and features no vegetation.

The proposed project would complete the site development as shown on the submitted drawings (see attachments). This would include the required vegetative cover, identified parking areas, and curbing to identify entries to the site.

Project Design - The proposed project is to use the existing building as manufacturing space and to add a second floor with warehouse and office space directly related to the business on the site. The project as proposed would construct a future dock and barge landing. The proposed building would be a wood frame building with generally flat roof. It would be clad in metal siding and feature vinyl window units as shown on the submitted drawings (see attachments).

Construction Phasing – The applicant indicates the project would be constructed in phases. Phase I was the existing building, Phase II would be the second floor addition to the building and site development. Phase III would be the dock structure and floats.

Traffic - The facility has been operating as a manufacturing facility essentially since it was constructed. The primary traffic to the site is delivery of materials for building construction. Employees travel to and from the site daily. The major traffic generated from the site would be that of construction equipment and tractor/trailer vehicles delivering pre-manufactured building components to various job sites. Channel Drive is a low volume dead-end street. No particular problems have been noted as a result of traffic generation from this site. However, the public right-of-way has been used by the owner for loading and unloading of materials, thereby blocking the traffic flow. These activities would be feasible on the site once the existing office building is demolished and the site improved.

Currently, the site is generally congested with equipment and building components such that employees typically park on the street. No designated parking is provided on the site as required by Title 49. Currently no safe and convenient ingress and egress is provided at the site. Once the second floor is constructed and the existing office building demolished the proposed plan would be developed. As proposed, the plan would provide the required parking and safe and convenient ingress and egress to the site thus meeting the Land Use Code.

Parking and Circulation - The existing permitted facility required 9 parking spaces for warehousing use at one space per 1,000 square feet. The CBJ Land Use Code requires the same amount of parking for a manufacturing use. Since the new construction would be office and storage related to the manufacturing use the same parking standard would apply. Thus the parking requirement for the project based upon the area proposed would be as follows:

Existing Manufacturing/Warehouse Use: 9,240 sq. ft.

Proposed Entry: 1,380 sq. ft.

Existing Mezzanine: 2,000 sq. ft.

Proposed Office Space: 3,000 sq. ft.

Proposed Warehouse Space: 6,000 sq. ft.

TOTAL AREA and PARKING REQ’D. 21,620 sq. ft. / 1,000 =21.6 or 22 spaces

The proposed plan indicates that the Land Use Code requirement of 22 parking spaces is met.

The circulation on the site will be directed by the two entries at the road. The combination of the proposed landscaping, curb, sidewalk, and fencing will clearly identify the driveways to the site and provide safe and convenient ingress and egress as required by the Land Use Code.

Vegetative Cover - The vegetative cover requirement is 5% of the upland portion of the subject site. This portion of the site is 55,000 square feet thus the vegetative cover requirement is 2,750 square feet. The proposed plan indicates approximately 2,055 square feet of vegetation. A sidewalk along the front of the property is proposed by the applicant for those who walk in the area. This feature is a kind gesture since it is on private property and the right-of-way is too narrow to include city sidewalks. The inclusion of the sidewalk would reduce the vegetative cover somewhat but is seen as a safety feature and contributing to the overall landscaping scheme of the site plan (see attachments).

Exterior Lighting – The applicant has not submitted exterior lighting plans for the project. Typically this is done at the time of the building permit. When the lighting design and specific luminaires are selected, CDD staff should review this to assure that glare would not be caused to adjacent properties, roadways, or across the channel to Douglas Island.

JCMP REVIEW

Juneau Coastal Management Program – The applicant is preparing the documents necessary for the application of an Army Corps of Engineers permit for the proposed dock development. Once this is submitted the project would be reviewed for compliance with the Alaska Coastal Management Program (ACMP). The applicant desires to move forward on the project thus this review of the JCMP enforceable policies.

There are two issues of the JCMP that apply to the proposed project; that of water relevancy of the use and the limit of outward development from the shore line.

Water Relevancy - The site is located in a special waterfront area under the JCMP. Section §49.70.960-8(b)(1) and (D) states:

"(1) General. The land and water uses listed below as permissible in the special waterfront areas may be further restricted in zoning classifications within the special waterfront areas. The uses and activities listed below are deemed to meet the water-relevancy requirements of Section §49.70.905. Other uses and activities may be allowed if they meet the requirements of the zoning districts under CBJ Chapter §49.25, and the water-relevancy requirements of CBJ Section §49.70.905."

"(D) Any form of structure for manufacturing or repair which is related to maritime activity and which substantially requires or benefits from a shoreline location;"

As outlined in the owner’s business plan the manufacturing use will substantially benefit from the shoreline location. The plan is to construct a dock to deep water such that regular barge landings will be accommodated at all tide levels. This would allow the owner to receive building materials by barge and to ship out completed building components to other Southeast Alaska communities. The construction of the dock facility to support the manufacturing use meets the intent of the waterfront provisions of the JCMP and CBJ Land Use Code.

Line of Outward Development - The proposed project is located in the Special Waterfront District shown on Map 3J entitled: 3.5 Mile Egan Drive-South. This map indicates an outward line of permanent development. The proposed dock extends beyond the line of outward development (see attachments). The dock does not however extend beyond the lot line of the property. According to the owner, the Corps of Engineers indicated they would not approve fill or dredging past the current bulkhead. Therefore the proposed dock needs to extend to that shown to reach deep water.

The JCMP section §49.70.960 Special Waterfront Areas, subsection (a)(1) requires that "such uses are allowable outside the special waterfront areas under the terms of subsections (13) or (18) of Section §49.70.905. Subsection (18) has been reviewed and determined that (1) there is no feasible and prudent alternative to meet the public demand for the proposed work and (2) the nature of the use requires this specific location and no other location will suffice. This determination is due to the work consisting of the dock that has been part of a long-range development plan to access deep water and continues the development begun with the construction of the existing bulkhead. Further, there is a public need for such a facility in order to meet market demands of outlying communities and strengthen Juneau as a regional commercial hub.

CDD Staff reviewed the proposed project with the US Coast Guard. Their preliminary review indicates that the dock would not extend out far enough to cause navigational problems. In the course of the Corps of Engineers permitting process the Coast Guard would look more closely at the proposal and may require the dock to be lighted to assure visibility to mariners.

For the purposes of the JCMP it is found that the proposed project is consistent with enforceable policies provided the following stipulations are met.

  1. Non-creosote Pilings. No pentachlorophenol preservatives may be used on pilings and wooden structures in marine waters. Any other preservative on pilings and wooden structures must be applied by pressure injection.
  2. Disturbance of tidelands must be kept to the minimum necessary to practicably accomplish the work. Operation of machinery and equipment on tidelands must be limited to the smallest area practicable. Entry of fines and suspendable material into the ocean must be kept at the minimum practicable.
  3. Reasonable precautions and controls must be used to prevent incidental and accidental discharge of petroleum products.
  4. Material such as absorbent pads and booms must be available on-site, and must be used to contain and cleanup any petroleum product spilled as a result of construction activity.
  5. The dock shall not impede lawful navigation and shall be consistent with recommendations of the US Coast Guard. 

FINDINGS

CBJ ?§49.15.320 (e), Decision, states that the Planning Commission shall consider the Allowable Use permit application and shall review the Community Development Director's recommendation with respect to:

1. Whether the application is complete;

2. Whether the requested permit is appropriate according to the Table of Permissible Uses;

3. Whether the development as proposed will comply with the other requirements of this chapter; and,

4. Whether conditions are necessary for approval.

The commission shall approve the application and grant the permit unless it finds, by a preponderance of the evidence, that one or more of the criteria have not been met. In either case the commission shall adopt written findings setting forth the basis for its decision.

Per CBJ ?§49.15.320 (e)(1 through 4), Decision, the director makes the following findings on the criteria for granting the requested allowable use approval:

1. Is the application for the requested Allowable Use permit complete?

Yes. The application contains the information necessary to conduct a full review of the proposed operations. The application submittal by the applicant, including the appropriate fees, substantially conform to the requirements of CBJ code Chapters §49.15 and §49.35.

2. Is the requested permit appropriate according to the Table of Permissible Uses?

Yes. The requested permit is appropriate according to the Table of Permissible Uses. The permit is listed at CBJ ?§49.25.300 section 4.300 for the Waterfront Industrial zoning district.

3. Will the proposed development comply with the other requirements of this chapter?

Yes. The proposed development complies with the other requirements of this chapter.

Notice was provided in the Juneau Empire under Your Municipality which ran on

(March 30, 2001). A public notice sign was posted on the site at least 14 days prior to the meeting and notice was mailed to owners of record of all property within 500 feet of the subject property.

4. Are conditions necessary for approval of the requested Allowable Use permit?

Yes. Based on the preceding staff analysis, it is found that conditions regarding construction scheduling are necessary for approval of the requested permit. The proposed conditions are listed in the following recommendation.

Per CBJ §?49.70.900 (b)(3), General Provisions, the director makes the following Juneau Coastal Management Program consistency determination:

5. Will the proposed development comply with the Juneau Coastal Management Program?

Yes. Based on the preceding staff analysis, it is determined that the proposed development will comply with the Juneau Coastal Management Program because building materials will arrive via barge to the facility, and the plan is to then ship via barge a certain amount of the manufactured building components to other communities or remote sites.

RECOMMENDATION

It is recommended that the Planning Commission adopt the director's analysis and findings and grant the requested allowable use permit. The permit would allow a manufacturing use along warehouse space, offices, and a dock facility in a waterfront industrial zoning district. The approval is subject to the following scheduling conditions:

1. Prior to issuance of a building permit, the applicant shall submit to CDD staff for review and approval specific luminaires which would not cause glare onto adjacent properties, roadways, or across the channel to Douglas Island.

2. Prior to the issuance of a final certificate of occupancy, the owner shall construct the parking facility, sidewalk, curb, and install the landscaping as indicated on the plan. 

 Further, the following stipulations of the JCMP shall be met:

3. Non-creosote Pilings. No pentachlorophenol preservatives may be used on pilings and wooden structures in marine waters. Any other preservative on pilings and wooden structures must be applied by pressure injection.

4. Disturbance of tidelands must be kept to the minimum necessary to practicably accomplish the work. Operation of machinery and equipment on tidelands must be limited to the smallest area practicable. Entry of fines and suspendable material into the ocean must be kept at the minimum practicable.

5. Reasonable precautions and controls must be used to prevent incidental and accidental discharge of petroleum products.

6. Material such as absorbent pads and booms must be available on-site, and must be used to contain and cleanup any petroleum product spilled as a result of construction activity.

7.The dock shall not impede lawful navigation and shall be consistent with recommendations of the US Coast Guard.