May 18 2019

The Piedmont City Council is recommended to approve joining a coalition of local governments organized by Best Best & Krieger LLP (BBK) in opposition to the proposed FCC Over-the-Air Reception Devices Rule, authorize the filing of comments on behalf of the City of Piedmont in FCC rulemaking proceedings, and authorize the City Administrator to execute a retainer agreement in an amount not to exceed $2,500. 

READ the staff report for the May  20, 2019 Council meeting by clicking below:

05/20/19 – Authorization to Join a Coalition to Oppose Proposed FCC Over-the-Air Reception Devices Rule and Authorize Comments in Response to Rulemaking

READ the May 20, 2019 agenda by clicking below:

http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/agendas/2019-05-20.pdf

May 18 2019

READ the staff report to view the plans and funding by clicking below:

05/20/19 – Consideration of a Resolution Dedicating SB-1 Funding for FY 19-20 to the Oakland Avenue Pavement Project

READ the May 20, 2019 Council agenda by clicking below:

http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/agendas/2019-05-20.pdf

May 12 2019

On Saturday, May 18, at 10:00 a.m., the Public Works Department will host a walk on Magnolia Avenue to discuss the 47 liquidambar trees which are slated to be removed as a part of the 2018 Pavement Project.

The walk will begin at 10:00 am at the intersection of Hillside and Magnolia Avenues and will move down the length of the street. Neighbors and interested residents are invited to attend and join in conversation with city staff, the City Engineer, and the independent arborist who evaluated the trees.

When approving the 2018 Pavement Project, the City Council directed staff to, “…work with neighbors on Magnolia Avenue who are impacted by street tree removal to consider whether engineering and/or other accommodations can be made to preserve additional trees on this street.” This walk-through is being conducted to provide neighbors with an opportunity to share their feedback, which will be reviewed by staff and the City Engineer.

Below is a plan that identifies the trees reviewed in the arborist report and the trees proposed to be removed. 


For further information, contact Director of Public Works Chester Nakahara at 420-3061 or via email at cnakahara@piedmont.ca.gov.

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READ the detailed staff and Arborist report on tree removal for Magnolia Avenue by clicking below:

http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/publicworks/docs/2019-05-01-magnolia-tree-report.pdf

May 10 2019

CIP Recommendations: Yes to improvements for Piedmont Middle School courts for pickleball usage, license plate readers at all Piedmont entrances, drinking fountain in Piedmont Main Park for dogs and people – No to Blair Park and Witter Field improvements. 

The CIP Review Committee recommendations will be discussed as part of the Piedmont Proposed FY 19-20 Budget Presentation and Workshop Saturday, May 11,  9 am Piedmont Police Department Emergency Operations Center (EOC).

CIP Review Committee recommendations with respect to the 9 new 2019-20 resident proposals can be summarized as follows:

The following 3 proposals can move forward with City Council support:

-Renovation of PMS Hard-courts
-Installation of ALPRs at Piedmont Entrances
-Installation of a drinking fountain (for humans and dogs) in Piedmont Park

The following 3 proposals are recommended as meritorious but requiring additional study from public safety and/or public works:

-Two related Wildwood Gardens proposals
-Development of a landscape triangle at Blair and Calvert Court

The following 3 proposals are determined to need direction from City Council:

 – Blair Park proposals for donated fencing and parking improvements

 – Two related Witter Field proposals

READ the agenda below for the Council Budget Work Session when the Council will consider all CIP proposals and department budgets:

http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/agendas/2019-05-11_special.pdf

READ the full CIP Review Report for 2019 below:

CIPreviewreport 2019

Minutes, broadcasts, and recordings were not made of any of the CIP Review meetings.  Staff reports were not publicized. 

Recordings and broadcast will not be made of the Saturday, May 11, 2019 Council Budget Workshop held at 403 Highland Avenue in the Emergency Operations Center of the Piedmont Police Department.  The public is welcome to attend and participate.

 

READ the full staff 2019-20 Budget recommendations including fees, permits, salaries, benefits, use of City property, tax rates, personnel, etc. – http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/finance/budget/19-20/19-20_budget.shtml

May 7 2019

Residents and property owners are not aware of  what is being changed – added or removed – in the newly proposed Design Guidelines for Piedmont.

Most Piedmonters are not aware of changes impacting all Piedmonters to be made for buildings and landscaping through Design Guidelines currently under consideration by the Piedmont Planning Commission and soon by the Piedmont City Council.  Concern has been expressed that there is no executive summary provided covering the numerous pages of the proposed Design Guidelines for easy understanding by the public of the changes. 

In November 2018 the City asked those who have filed Design Review applications during the previous two years to answer questions via an electronic survey.  The questions were answered by 103 homeowners, 44 architects, 23 contractors, and 27 other persons with 88 percent indicating their project had been approved.

The following is an excerpt from a staff report presented to the Planning Commission demonstrating that neighbors and neighborhoods impacted by changes to buildings, homes, apartments, and commercial sites were not consulted during the process.  Proponents of projects, architects, certain property owners, and contractors were invited to provide feedback. The meetings formulating the proposals were for selected individuals “stakeholders,” and closed to the public. 

From the Planning Department staff report: 

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

The City consulted with a range of stakeholders as part of the Design Guidelines update. In September 2018, staff and the consulting team interviewed Gail Lombardy of the Piedmont Historical Society to discuss the effectiveness of the existing Guidelines in preserving the character of Piedmont’s older homes.

On September 25, 2018, the City facilitated a discussion of the existing Design Guidelines and Design Review process with five local architects. Feedback from these meetings was incorporated into the Draft Guidelines. An informational item on the Design Guidelines, including an opportunity for public comment, was presented to the Planning Commission on September 10, 2018.

In late November 2018, the City emailed a letter with a link to an electronic survey to about 700 Piedmont households (roughly 18 percent of the city). A number of local architects and contractors also received the letter.

The survey was not made public. 

Recipients included all households who had filed an application for Design Review between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2018. There were 162 surveys completed, equivalent to a response rate of 23 percent.

Survey respondents included 103 homeowners, 44 architects, 23 contractors, and 27 persons answering “more than one of the above” or “other.” About 88 percent indicated their project had been approved, including 27 percent with “minor” changes and 6 percent with “major” changes. Some 62 percent of the respondents indicated their projects were now completed, 20 percent had projects under construction, and 18 percent did not build the project or answered “other.”

Key findings of the survey were as follows:

 Respondents had generally positive experiences with City staff during Design Review. 48 percent described their experience as “excellent” and 35 percent described their experience as “good.” Only 8 percent reported their experience to be “poor.”

 76 percent of the respondents indicated they consulted the Design Guidelines as part of the Design Review process. Of this total, 31 percent found the Guidelines to be “extremely clear” and 54 percent found them to be “somewhat clear.”

 Only 7 percent of the respondents felt that the design suggestions provided by staff were “not constructive.”

 More than two thirds of the respondents rated their Design Review experience with the Planning Commission as “good” or “excellent.” About 13 percent rated their experience as “poor.” About 31 percent of the respondents felt their project had been improved as a result of the Design Review process.

 Respondents were asked to rate a series of design factors on a 4 point interval scale (not a concern, slight concern, moderate concern, major concern). The factors identified as being the greatest concerns were preserving views, preserving the historic character of Piedmont homes, homes that appeared too large for the lot, and preserving side and rear yard privacy. The factors identified as being less of a concern were retaining walls, fences and walls in front yards, and the siting and design of carports.

 About 35 percent of the respondents felt the City’s Design Review requirements were “too strict,” while only one percent felt they were “not strict enough.” Just over 50 percent of the respondents felt the requirements were “about right.”

Consideration of Design Guidelines by Planning Commission is on Monday, May 13th, 5 pm Planning Commission meeting at City Hall.  The meeting will be broadcast on Cable Channel 27 and from the City of Piedmont website under videos/ Planning Commission.

READ the staff information below >

 http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/design-guidelines-update/

 

May 7 2019

Planning Commission to Consider Design Guidelines Update
Monday, May 13, 2019 – Discussion and Recommendation

RECOMMENDATION TO ADOPT DRAFT UPDATED DESIGN GUIDELINES

Receipt of a draft update of the City of Piedmont Design Guidelines, an informational report from the City’s consultant regarding the draft update, and a recommendation from staff that the Commission recommend the City Council approve the Guidelines. This agenda item is continued from the Commission’s meeting on April 8, 2019, and includes an opportunity for public comment and Commissioner discussion.

City Press Release Contact: Kevin Jackson, Planning Director

Planning Commission to Consider Design Guidelines Update Monday, May 13, 2019 – Discussion and Recommendation

At its meeting on May 13th, the Planning Commission will consider updates to the city’s Design Guidelines, which provide a framework for actions of staff and the Planning Commission in making decisions regarding Planning Applications from residents. The draft Design Guidelines were introduced at the April 8th meeting, during which staff answered questions, the public provided feedback, the Planning Commission discussed the proposal and then voted to continue its discussion to its net regular meeting scheduled for May 13th. During this meeting, the Commission will take additional testimony from the public, continue its discussion, and consider a recommendation to the City Council.

Background

This project to update and reformat the City of Piedmont Design Guidelines is the fifth and final phase of policy updates undertaken in response to the adoption of the General Plan in 2009 and the Housing Element in 2011. The first four phases were related to revisions of City Code Chapter 17 (the Zoning Ordinance) and were completed between 2012 and 2017. Specifically, Action 28.E in the Design and Preservation Element of the 2009 General Plan calls for the City’s Design Guidelines to be updated.

Draft updated Design Guidelines

In addition to updating and reformatting the guidelines for single-family residential construction, the draft update includes new guidelines for multi-family residential construction, commercial and mixed-use construction commercial signage, and landscaping. A chapter that include design guidelines for wireless communication facilities will be added at a future date. In addition to the link above to the electronic copy of the draft Guidelines, print copies are available for viewing at Piedmont City Hall, 120 Vista Avenue.

The draft Design Guidelines are available online at

http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/design-guidelines-update/

printed copies are available for viewing at the Public Works counter in City Hall.

City Council to Consider Adoption

The Planning Commission’s recommendation concerning the draft Design Guidelines will be forwarded to the City Council for its consideration, as it is the decision making body for this matter. The date of Council consideration will be publicized well in advance of the meeting.

Public Engagement

Public comment is invited throughout the process. Interested members of the public are encouraged to read the draft Design Guidelines and staff report, and attend the Planning Commission meeting scheduled for 5:00 p.m. on Monday, May 13, 2019 in City Hall, 120 Vista Avenue.

Written comments and requests to receive email notification of activities related to the Design Guidelines update should be sent to Planning Director Kevin Jackson at kjackson@piedmont.ca.gov. Comments on paper can also be submitted by hand or by mail to the Piedmont Planning Commission, 120 Vista Avenue, Piedmont, CA 94611.

Apr 29 2019

Landscaping and Buildings

Piedmont Planning Commission Meeting, Monday, May 13th – 5:00 p.m.  City Council Chambers, 120 Vista Avenue

The meeting will be broadcast live on cable Channel 27 and from the City’s website under videos/ Planning Commission.

Updating and reformatting the guidelines for single-family residential construction, new guidelines for multi-family residential construction, commercial and mixed-use construction commercial signage, and landscaping are being considered.

At its meetings on May 13th, the Planning Commission will consider updates to the city’s Design Guidelines, which provide a framework for actions of staff and the Planning Commission in making decisions regarding Planning Applications from residents.  At the May 13th meeting, the Commission will take testimony from the public, continue its discussion, and consider a recommendation to the City Council.

Background

This project to update and reformat the City of Piedmont Design Guidelines is the fifth and final phase of policy updates undertaken in response to the adoption of the General Plan in 2009 and the Housing Element in 2011. The first four phases were related to revisions of City Code Chapter 17 (the Zoning Ordinance) and were completed between 2012 and 2017. Specifically, Action 28.E in the Design and Preservation Element of the 2009 General Plan calls for the City’s Design Guidelines to be updated.

Draft updated Design Guidelines

In addition to updating and reformatting the guidelines for single-family residential construction, the draft update includes new guidelines for multi-family residential construction, commercial and mixed-use construction commercial signage, and landscaping.

A chapter that includes design guidelines for wireless communication facilities will be added at a future date. In addition to the links below to the electronic copy of the draft Guidelines, print copies are available for viewing at Piedmont City Hall, 120 Vista Avenue.

Draft City of Piedmont Design Guidelines, dated March 2019.

This document is comprised of seven chapters, plus a table of contents and glossary. Copies of each section may be downloaded at the links below:

April 8, 2019 Planning Commission Meeting

Related Documents

City Council to Consider Adoption

The Planning Commission’s recommendation concerning the draft Design Guidelines will be forwarded to the City Council for its consideration, as it is the decision making body for this matter. The date of Council consideration will be publicized well in advance of the meeting.

Public Engagement

Public comment is invited throughout the process. Interested members of the public are encouraged to read the draft Design Guidelines and staff report, and attend the Planning Commission meeting scheduled for 5:00 p.m. Monday, May 13, 2019 in City Hall, 120 Vista Avenue. Written comments and requests to receive email notification of activities related to the Design Guidelines update should be sent to Planning Director Kevin Jackson at kjackson@piedmont.ca.gov. Comments on paper can also be submitted by hand or by mail to the Piedmont Planning Commission or City Council at 120 Vista Avenue, Piedmont, CA 94611.

READ the full agenda here > May 2019 Planning comAgenda

Apr 28 2019

Thursday, May 9th is the 25th annual Bike to Work Day in the Bay Area! Join your fellow Piedmonters in riding to work!

This year, there will be two energizer stations in Piedmont. The first, sponsored by Piedmont Connect, will be located in the Ace Hardware parking lot at 1221 Grand Avenue, and will be open from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m.

The second, sponsored by the City of Piedmont, will be located in the Community Hall parking lot at 711 Highland Avenue and will also be open from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m.

Please stop by either energizer station to get treats, bicycling information, and other materials. For more information on Bike to Work Day, please visit: https://bikeeastbay.org/events/bike-work…

For more information on the City’s energizer station, please contact Steven Lizzarago at (510) 420-3050 or slizzarago@piedmont.ca.gov

Apr 19 2019

At the April 3, 2019 Piedmont Park Commission meeting­, Nancy Scott from the Piedmont Garden Club and Chairperson of their Civic Projects program, presented Mayor Bob McBain and Park Commission Chairperson Betsy Goodman with a generous donation of $5,000 to be used towards installing new light strings in the courtyard of the Piedmont Community Hall in Main Park.

Nancy Scott, Mayor Bob McBain, and Park Commission Chairperson Betsy Goodman

The City is in the process of upgrading the electrical controls for the exterior pole lights at the Community Hall. When Phase 1 of the lighting improvements is completed, the City will start Phase 2 and will be  working with lighting consultant Thomas Skradski of Lumen Works and the Electrical Contractor, Mark Schulkamp of Mark W. Schulkamp Electric Co. to design and install new light strings that will be suspended from the four pole lights in the courtyard. The pole lights will be designed to accommodate the new string lights. Once the new string lights are installed, the courtyard illumination will offer an option with the new, festive string lights.

The Piedmont Garden Club on April 18tharranged for members and friends to deadhead the hundreds of daffodils in Blair Park.

From left to right: Sharon Hom, Mary Wood, Sandy Hagglund and Nancy Scott.

The Piedmont Garden Club https://www.piedmontgardenclub.org/  has a long history of contributing their time and generous donations to the City of Piedmont.

Double click on photos to enlarge.

Apr 16 2019

Tasting a Sustainable Future: Piedmont Climate Action Fair & Reception –

Donated food to taste plus information !

On Wednesday, April 24th from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., the City of Piedmont and Piedmont Connect will host “Tasting a Sustainable Future: Piedmont Climate Action Fair & Reception” at the Piedmont Community Hall.

Consumption is a large portion of emissions that are emitted in Piedmont. It is hard to measure and to monitor as emissions stemming from consumption are based on individuals’ choices. The April 24th event will showcase different sectors of consumption: transportation, food, water, home energy, clothes, and waste.

Residents who come to the event will have the opportunity to learn how to purchase more sustainably, reduce their food waste, conserve water, travel greener, and electrify their homes. Information at the event will be provided by representatives of the East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD), East Bay Community Energy (EBCE), Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), and StopWaste. Members of Piedmont’s community and City staff will also be sharing resources and information.

Attendees will have a chance to meet Piedmont chef Paul Arenstam of Summer Kitchen and San Francisco chef Nick Balla of Bar Tartine, who will serve sustainable snacks from Balla’s new Smokebread project. They will also be able to try Patagonia Provision’s new Long Root Wit beer made with the climate-friendly grain, kernza.

Residents interested in attending may register through Eventbrite at

>https://tastinasustainablefuture.eventbrite.com.

Registration will close once the event reaches capacity. The City appreciates your understanding.

For more information about this workshop or to be added to the climate action email list, please contact Assistant Planner Mira Hahn at mhahn@piedmont.ca.gov or Climate Fellow Brooke Edell at bedell@piedmont.ca.gov, or by calling (510) 420-3050.