Long Beach, CA
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File #: 19-0071    Version: 1 Name: DS - Breakers Appeal Hearing
Type: Public Hearing Status: Concluded
File created: 1/18/2019 In control: City Council
On agenda: 2/5/2019 Final action: 2/5/2019
Title: Recommendation to receive supporting documentation into the record, conclude the public hearing; consider appeals from David P. Denevan, Jeremy Arnold, and Danielle Wilson; accept Categorical Exemption CE-18-152; and Uphold the Planning Commission’s decision to approve a Site Plan Review (SPR18-033), Conditional Use Permit (CUP18-015), and Local Coastal Development Permit (LCDP18-022), to permit a change of use and renovation of The Breakers Hotel into a 185-room hotel with food and beverage venues (with onsite alcohol), banquet/meeting areas, and amenities, in the Coastal Zone at 210 East Ocean Boulevard in the Downtown Shoreline Planned Development District (PD-6) (Application No. 1806-19). (District 2)
Sponsors: Development Services
Attachments: 1. 020519-H-2sr&att.pdf, 2. 020519-H-2 Attachment J - Additional Supplemental Materials.pdf, 3. 020519-H-2 Powerpoint.pdf, 4. 020519-H-2 Breakers PPT - Applicant.pdf, 5. 020519-H-2 Victory Park PPT - Applicant.pdf, 6. 020519-H-2 Correspondence.pdf, 7. 020519-H-2 Corresp. G.Kracov.pdf
Related files: 18-082PL

TITLE

Recommendation to receive supporting documentation into the record, conclude the public hearing; consider appeals from David P. Denevan, Jeremy Arnold, and Danielle Wilson; accept Categorical Exemption CE-18-152; and

 

Uphold the Planning Commission’s decision to approve a Site Plan Review (SPR18-033), Conditional Use Permit (CUP18-015), and Local Coastal Development Permit (LCDP18-022), to permit a change of use and renovation of The Breakers Hotel into a 185-room hotel with food and beverage venues (with onsite alcohol), banquet/meeting areas, and amenities, in the Coastal Zone at 210 East Ocean Boulevard in the Downtown Shoreline Planned Development District (PD-6)

(Application No. 1806-19).  (District 2)

 

DISCUSSION

On November 15, 2018, the Planning Commission held a public hearing and conditionally approved a Site Plan Review (SPR), Conditional Use Permit (CUP), and Local Coastal Development Permit (LCDP) requests for the change of use and renovation of The Breakers Hotel (The Breakers) into a 185-room hotel with food and beverage venues (with onsite alcohol), banquet/meeting areas, and amenities, in the Coastal Zone at 210 East Ocean Boulevard in the Downtown Shoreline Planned Development District (PD-6) (Attachment A - Planning Commission Staff Report). On August 13, 2018, the Cultural Heritage Commission (CHC) approved a Certificate of Appropriateness request to make exterior building modifications to The Breakers, including restoration work, roof modifications and the addition of an enclosed stairwell, in conjunction with a change of use back to a hotel (Attachment B - Cultural Heritage Commission Staff Report).

 

The Property

 

The subject site is located on the south side of Ocean Boulevard between Locust Avenue to the west and Collins Way to the east (Attachment C - Location Map). Victory Park, a public park, abuts the subject property to the north. An existing access easement through the public park allows for vehicular access to the site via an existing circular driveway. The east-west alley (Marine Way) to the rear of the project site was vacated by Resolution No. C-23207 (July 21, 1981), and an easement was reserved along the full length and width of the alley for utility purposes. The site is located within Subarea 7 of the Downtown Shoreline Planned Development District (PD-6), and within General Plan Land Use District Number 7 - Mixed Uses (LUD 7). LUD 7 is intended for combinations of land uses.

 

Surrounding land uses include the Long Beach Convention Center to the east across Collins Way, office uses to the north across Ocean Boulevard, and office uses to the west across Locust Avenue. To the south across the vacated Marine Way, the site abuts a multi-family residential development (five-stories of apartments over a two-story parking garage) located at 207 Seaside Way, which is currently under construction.

 

The Breakers was constructed in 1925 as a 13-story hotel with a 14th floor cupola and rooftop area. Two additional levels are located below street level at Ocean Boulevard and the building is approximately 172,000-square-feet in area. The Breakers was designated as a City Historic Landmark in 1989 and this designation recognizes the building’s Spanish Renaissance Revival style, elaborate concrete ornamentation around the entry, and bas-relief busts and detailing.

 

On March 23, 1989, the property was approved for the conversion of The Breakers to a 233-unit congregate care facility (Case No. 8901-29). Prior to the conversion to a congregate care facility, the last use was a hotel. Additional approvals include installation of 12 canopies (1983), hall rental use (with offsite valet) at an existing congregate care facility (1993), an exemption for onsite sale of general alcohol at an existing restaurant with a fixed bar (Sky Room) (1998), installation of signage for the Sky Room Restaurant (1998), and a use permit to reestablish a banquet room/hall rental in association with the Sky Room (1998).

 

The proposed project will rehabilitate The Breakers building and return the structure to its original historic use. Further, it will establish an economically viable use of the property, which has been vacant since 2016.

 

The Project

 

The scope of work subject to the requested approvals (Attachment D - Plans) includes the following:

 

                     Change of use from 233-unit congregate care facility to a 185-room hotel

                     Expansion of alcohol service to new food and beverage venues

                     Interior floor plan reconfiguration

                     Exterior building modifications, including restoration work, roof modifications, and the addition of an enclosed stairwell

                     Addition of an outdoor rooftop pool and deck area on the existing 3rd floor roof

                     Expansion of the 14th floor rooftop terrace and addition of a new restroom structure on 14th floor terrace

                     Conceptual approval of driveway modifications and re-landscaping Victory Park

 

An addition to the tower portion of the building is proposed to accommodate a new stairwell and service elevator. The addition extends the tower eastward approximately ten feet from its existing facade. The addition of the stairwell and service elevator is a necessary life safety improvement for the building that provides a gurney elevator and

 

code-compliant stairwell. The CHC placed conditions on the design of the stairwell addition to ensure the new work complies with the Secretary of Interior’s (SOI) Standards for Rehabilitation. 

 

The proposed modifications to Victory Park, a City-owned park, are shown on the Conceptual Landscape Plan (Attachment E - Conceptual Victory Park Landscape Plan). The plan includes installation of new park landscaping and amenities. The existing vehicular access to The Breakers will be reconfigured to eliminate one point of vehicle and pedestrian conflict along Ocean Boulevard by relocating the easterly driveway approach to exit onto Collins Way.

 

Entitlements

 

The Breakers is built lot line to lot line and there are no onsite parking spaces. The requested change of use to a proposed 185-room hotel falls within non-conforming parking rights, and no additional parking spaces are required for the hotel or other venue uses. However, as a required finding for the CUP for alcohol uses, the operator of the use will provide parking for the hotel equivalent to the parking required for new construction. The parking requirement for the uses serving alcohol under this CUP would be 218 parking spaces. The applicant is proposing to lease 250 non-exclusive offsite parking spaces at the adjacent Long Beach Convention Center parking garage, which The Breakers can use when available. The Convention Center parking is currently expected to have availability on most days of the year but may be limited during special events or certain times of the year. Likewise, parking demand from the hotel may increase during special events. In anticipation of these needs during special events, additional overflow parking of 150 spaces will be leased from the office building at 211 East Ocean Boulevard. All offsite parking will be valet parking only. In addition to providing offsite parking, the property owner/building manager will be required to implement a Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Plan (Attachment F - Transportation Demand Management Plan).

 

The applicant proposes to transfer the existing Type 47 (on-sale general eating place), Type 58 (Caterers Permit), and Type 68 (Portable Bar) alcohol licenses that cover the existing building. Interior uses related to onsite alcohol would be reconfigured as part of the change of use. No new alcohol licenses are proposed for the site beyond the existing license transfer. Conditions of approval will memorialize and further address operational procedures for all onsite alcohol venues.

 

Pursuant to PD-6, Site Plan Review is required for projects involving a change of use. In addition, the existing onsite alcohol uses would be a reconfiguration under the project, and would require a CUP (CUP18-015) for the on-premises alcohol. A LCDP is required for any discretionary actions within the Coastal Zone. The Planning Commission found the Project, as conditioned, to meet the SPR, CUP, and LCDP requirements (Attachment G - Findings and Conditions of Approval). 

 

One piece of written correspondence was received prior to the Planning Commission hearing (Attachment H - Public Comment Letters). At a public hearing held on November 15, 2018, the Planning Commission conditionally approved the SPR, CUP, and LCDP requests.

 

Appeals

 

Within the ten-day appeal period, three applications for appeal were filed by (1) David P. Denevan, (2) Jeremy Arnold, and (3) Danielle Wilson (Attachment I - Applications for Appeal). The appellants assert that the project conflicts with the standards established under the Victory Park Design Guidelines, PD-6, and the Local Coastal Program (LCP), and that the project introduces environmental impacts. 

 

Supplemental analyses and responses were conducted subsequent to the filing of the applications for appeal (Attachment J - Supplementary Materials). These supplementary materials demonstrate that the proposed project would not result in an effect on the environment and would be consistent with all required findings.

 

The project will restore the building back to its original use as a hotel. Staff finds that the reuse of a historic landmark building is not likely to cause any negative impacts upon the surrounding areas. The use will include food and beverage venues, banquet/meeting facilities, and amenity uses that would serve both local and hotel patrons. The use will introduce new accommodations to further serve tourists, business visitors, concert and playgoers, and special interest groups in the greater downtown environment. The conceptual changes to Victory Park would provide new landscaping and amenities to the park that are not present under existing conditions.

 

Staff has analyzed the project in accordance with the required findings for SPR, CUP, and LCDP entitlements, and finds that positive findings can be made. As such, staff recommends the City Council deny the appeals of the Planning Commission’s approval of the Project, thus approving the project.

 

Public hearing notices were distributed on January 15, 2019, in accordance with the requirements of Chapter 21.21 of the Long Beach Municipal Code. Any comments received prior to the City Council hearing of February 5, 2019 will be provided to the City Council at or before the hearing.

 

In accordance with the Guidelines for Implementation of the California Environmental Quality Act, a Categorical Exemption was prepared for the proposed project (Attachment K - Categorical Exemption CE-18-152), finding that this project qualifies for a Categorical Exemption per Sections 15301, 15303, 15331 and 15332 of the California Environmental Quality Act Guidelines.

 

One piece of written correspondence was received prior to the City Council Hearing (Attachment L - City Council Correspondence Received).

 

This matter was reviewed by Assistant City Attorney Michael J. Mais on January 4, 2019 and by Budget Management Officer Geraldine Alejo, on January 17, 2019.

 

TIMING CONSIDERATIONS

City Council action is requested on February 5, 2019. Section 21.21.504.B of the Zoning Regulations requires a public hearing for an appeal to the City Council to take place within 60 days of receipt of an appeal, the first of which was filed on November 21, 2018.

 

FISCAL IMPACT

There is no fiscal or local job impact associated with this recommendation.

 

SUGGESTED ACTION

Approve recommendation.

 

Respectfully Submitted,

LINDA F. TATUM, FAICP

DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT SERVICES

 

 

 

APPROVED:

 

PATRICK H. WEST

CITY MANAGER