Dec 18 2016

Neighbors Try to Retain Views and Privacy Through Appeal to Council

On the City Council agenda for December 19, 2016 is an appeal to a Planning Commission decision for expanding the house at 108 Moraga Avenue, owned by S. D. B. Talwatte and L. J. Chandler.  Story Poles with red flags have been visible for weeks on the property located opposite from the Mountain View Cemetery wall.

Appellants Charles Constanti & Erica Benson, owners of the house at 115 Ronada Avenue located behind 108 Moraga Avenue, state in their appeal:

“GROUNDS FOR APPEAL – SECTION 17.2S.2 FILING : A significant error occurred in the application of the provisions of City of Piedmont Municipal Code Chapter 17 (“Chapter 17″). Specifically, we believe that the approval of the design for an upper level addition and upper level deck at 108 Moraga Avenue involved a significant error because the decision was made, in part: • Based on misleading statements by the architect for 108 Moraga Avenue. • Without adequate discussion of the violations of Chapter 17, due to the significant adverse effect on neighboring properties’ existing views and privacy (both of which were points of complaints we made to the Planning Commission in letters dated July 2, 2016 and November 9, 2016). • Without appropriate consideration of the reasonable opportunity to reduce the height of the addition with lower level excavation because of misleading statements by the architect of 108 Moraga Avenue. 1 EXHIBIT H Agenda Report Page 55 • Without thorough consideration of the fact that increasing the size of the 1,004-square-foot house at 108 Moraga Avenue by 1,375 and thereby producing a 2,379-square-foot house is excessively large and crowded compared with the existing pattern of neighborhood development given the close proximity to 115 Ronada Avenue because of misleading statements by the architect of 108 Moraga Avenue.”

Constanti and Benson have been joined in their opposition to the Planning Commission approval by  neighbors Mark & Melissa Wilk and Kong.

“Although invited in written comments submitted by the appellants on November 9, 2016 to view the proposed project from the rear yard and inside their house at 115 Ronada Avenue, the Commissioners did not take the opportunity to view the proposed project from the rear yard and house at 115 Ronada Avenue.”

Paul Benoit, City Administrator

City Administrator Benoit is recommending that the Council deny the appeal.

Click below to view photos and read full documentation on the appeal.

12/19/16 – PUBLIC HEARING Regarding an Appeal of the Planning Commission’s Decision to Approve with Conditions an Application for Variance & Design Review at 108 Moraga Avenue

The hearing can be viewed on Channel 27 or via the City website under videos.

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