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NOTE:  The Planning Commission and Steering Committee’s approved changes to the General Plan and its Land Use Map, as noted below, are considered “Draft”, as they represent “Recommendations” to the City Council.  Once the Planning Commission completes its review, the next step is to take all Planning Commission “Recommendations” to the City Council in a public hearing wherein the City Council would be responsible for making the final decision on any changes to the General Plan.

 

September 11, 2013 Update - Planning Commission Approves Draft Text for General Plan Update

At their August 27, 2013 meeting, the Planning Commission completed their review of Staff’s proposed changes to the Draft “Table of Contents”, “Introduction”, “Conservation and Open Space Element”, “Land Use Element”, “Circulation Element”, “Visual Resources Element”, “Safety Element”, “Housing and Social Services Element”, “Noise Element”, “Fiscal Element” and “Glossary”.  At the meeting, the Commission approved the text for all of these sections.

Please click on the following links to access the most up to date Draft documents that have been approved by the Planning Commission:

Table of Contents
Introduction Section
1 – Conservation and Open Space Element
2 – Land Use Element
3 – Circulation Element
4 – Visual Resources Element
5 – Safety Element
6 – Housing and Social Services Element
7 – Noise Element
8 – Fiscal Element
Glossary

As the Draft Text has been completed, Staff will now be working on a few more Land Use Map changes, in addition to developing text, goals and policies to address Climate Change issues as required by State Law.  These items, in addition to any other necessary changes to the Draft approved text, will be reviewed by the Planning Commission through future public hearings prior to incorporation into the Draft document.  Once these additional updates are completed, Staff will prepare the required environmental analysis as required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).  Upon completion of the CEQA analysis, the Draft Update and CEQA analysis will be brought back to the Commission during a public hearing for final review and decision (recommendation to the City Council).  The City Council will then consider and adopt the entirety of the document including the environmental analysis in one or more future public hearings.

Please contact the project manager, Deputy Community Development Director, Gregory Pfost, at (310) 544-5228 or via e-mail at gregp@rpv.comif you have any questions.  If you contact Mr. Pfost via email, please make sure that you receive an email response from him acknowledging that he received your email.  If you do not receive an email response from Mr. Pfost, then please contact him via the telephone number above.

If you would like to be placed on an "interested parties" list to receive future public hearing notices related to the General Plan Update project via e-mail, you may subscribe by joining the list server group here.

August 27, 2013 - Proposed Revisions to the Draft General Plan Update Document

At the July 23, 2013 Planning Commission Meeting, the Commission reviewed Staff’s proposed changes to the Draft “Table of Contents”, “Introduction”, “Conservation and Open Space Element”, “Land Use Element” and the “Circulation Element”. At the meeting, the Commission accepted Staff’s proposed revisions with modifications, and requested that Staff make additional minor modifications. The Commission then continued the General Plan Update item to the August 27, 2013 meeting so that the Commission could review the remainder of the General Plan.

Since the July 23rd meeting, Staff has revised the Draft documents (noted above) to incorporate the Commission’s action on July 23rd. Please click on the following links to access the revised documents:

Table of Contents
Introduction Section
1 — Conservation and Open Space Element
2 — Land Use Element
3 — Circulation Element

As shown in the attached documents, via Comment Boxes, there are a few additional items that Staff would like to review with the Commission at the August 27th meeting. At the August 27th meeting, Staff will recommend that the Commission review those remaining items first so that this first set of documents (noted above) can be completed prior to the Commission providing comment on the remainder of the Elements (Visual Resources, Safety, Housing and Social Services, Noise, Fiscal, Glossary), which can be accessed below.

Staff is making the documents noted above available ahead of the August 27th meeting to allow the Commissioners and the public additional time to review the revised documents.

Please contact the project manager, Deputy Community Development Director, Gregory Pfost, at (310) 544-5228 or via e-mail at gregp@rpv.com if you have any questions.

July 23, 2013 - Staff Proposed Revisions to the Draft General Plan Update Document

At prior Planning Commission meetings, the Commission had reviewed and approved all of the “Draft” text in each element of the General Plan Update.  However, because the Commission and Staff had been reviewing the elements individually without the benefit of seeing them in relation to each other, as noted at previous meetings, Staff had always envisioned recommending additional text revisions to help the document read better, to provide additional updates, and to address previous Commission comments/questions. 

Staff has recently completed its recommended revisions.  Review of the proposed Staff recommended revisions will begin at the July 23, 2013 Planning Commission meeting., which will be held at 7pm at Hesse Park Community Building, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard., Rancho Palos Verdes.  Staff is making the document available ahead of the normal schedule to allow the Commissioners and the public additional time to review the proposed revisions. 

Below are individual links to each section of the General Plan.   Each section is the Planning Commission’s previously approved “Draft” Element with Staff’s proposed text revisions shown in underline text for text proposed to be added and strikethrough text for text proposed to be removed.  Additionally, Staff has added text boxes where larger changes have been made to describe the purpose of the change and/or where Staff seeks input/direction from the Commission.  Please click on the following links to access the documents:

Table of Contents
Introduction Section
1 – Conservation and Open Space Element
2 – Land Use Element
3 – Circulation Element
4 – Visual Resources Element
5 – Safety Element
6 – Housing and Social Services Element
7 – Noise Element
8 – Fiscal Element
Glossary

At the July 23rd meeting, Staff will be requesting that the Commission review, comment and/or approve Staff’s proposed amendments.  Since this is the first time the Commission is seeing all of the Draft elements in one document and there are quite a few recommended changes, Staff envisions that the Commission may not complete their review in one meeting.  If that is the case, the Commission will continue their review of the proposed text amendments to a future meeting.

In reviewing the document, one will notice that Staff has started to place photographs into the document and attached a Table of Contents and Glossary.  These are draft and were added to simply show how the entire document is beginning to take shape.  Before the document is formally adopted, additional format changes, graphics and photographs will be added to provide a more polished look. 

February 26, 2013 - Review of "Hazard" (“Hillside”) areas as part of General Plan Update

As part of the City's ongoing General Plan Update, Staff is working on updating the City's Land Use Map. This effort includes an update to the "Hazard" Land Use Designation which typically consists of canyon areas, extreme slope areas over 35% in gradient and known landslide areas on private properties.  Based upon the commentary and discussion during the August 28th and September 25th, 2012 Planning Commission meetings, the Planning Commission  previously directed Staff to move forward with all of the City Geologist’s recommended changes to the existing “Hazard” areas, as well as recommended changing the name of the Land Use Designation from “Hazard” to “Open-Space Hillside.”

Per the Planning Commission’s direction, Staff began the review process by mailing notices of the pending changes to 260 property owners located in the eastern part of the City (i.e. Eastview and Miraleste).  Public hearings before the Planning Commission began on December 11, 2012 and were continued to January 22, 2013 in order to address issues and concerns raised by the Planning Commission.  At the January 22nd meeting the Planning Commission approved to move forward with adjusting the hazard boundary lines as recommended by the City Geologist, but for only properties where the hazard land use area would decrease.  As this decision was different than the Planning Commission’s prior direction, the Commission directed Staff to schedule a new public hearing to confirm that this new direction would apply to the remainder of properties in the City.

At the publicly noticed February 26, 2013 Planning Commission meeting, the Planning Commission considered their previous direction and new direction, and based upon public comments and discussions with Staff, the Planning Commission agreed to pursue option 3A for the purpose of updating the General Plan hazard land use designation.  Option 3A is as follows:

“Move forward with adjusting the Hazard boundary lines as recommended by the City Geologist for only those properties where the Hazard land use area decreases.  Additionally, change the name of the zoning designation for hillside areas to ‘Open-Space Hillside’ instead of its current ‘Hazard’ designation.  By doing so, the landslide moratorium area and other known landslide areas in the City would retain the ‘Open-Space Hazard’ designation.  A subsequent Zone Change and Zoning Code Amendment would be required to establish a new Zoning District of Open-Space Hillside.” Due to this change in direction, Staff will be presenting the specific proposed changes to the remaining properties with a Hazard designation wherein the City Geologist recommends a reduction in Hazard area to the Planning Commission in separate duly noticed public meeting hearings.  Notices will be sent to affected property owners where the hazard land use area decreases prior to the public hearing in which their property will be reviewed.  The notice will provide a specific map in order to assist property owners with understanding the proposed changes affecting their property.  Upon receiving this notice, property owners will have a 15-day comment period in which to write to Staff any concerns or questions regarding the proposed changes, and all affected property owners will have the opportunity to speak at the noticed public hearing.  All decisions rendered by the Planning Commission during these public hearings are recommendations to the City Council which, along with other updates to the General Plan, will ultimately be forwarded to the City Council for final review and adoption.

The following documents provide additional background regarding the review of the “Hazard” areas for your reference:

  • A REVISED DRAFT General Plan Land Use Map indicating the adjustments to the OH land use areas where the OH on a property is being decreased and there are no increases to the OH areas.  Please click here to view the map.

  • The February 26, 2013 Staff Report presented to the Planning Commission, which provides a discussion of the possible options for addressing adjustments to the OH area.  Please click here to view the staff report.

  • The January 22, 2013 Staff Report presented to the Planning Commission, which discussed questions and issues raised during the December 11, 2012 Planning Commission public hearing.  Please click here to view the staff report.

  • The December 11, 2012 Staff Report presented to the Planning Commission, which provided a discussion of the specific changes proposed to 260 properties located on the eastern side of the City.  Please click here to view the staff report.
  • The September 25th Staff Report presented to the Planning Commission, which provides additional information regarding the proposed new “Open-Space Hillside” Land Use Designation, as well as a comparison of existing and proposed land use restrictions.  Please click here to view the staff report.

  • The August 28th Staff Report presented to the Planning Commission, which presented several options for the Planning Commission to consider regarding the proposed changes and background regarding the purpose of the “Hazard” Land Use Designation.  Please click here to view the staff report.

  • The City Geologist's Evaluation Report, which describes his review criteria as well as his justification for the adjustments to the Hazard boundary   lines Citywide.  Please note that the City Geologist's recommended changes reference a marked up City Zoning Map that has been divided into 34 Sheets that can be individually accessed through the Evaluation Report.  Please click here to access the Evaluation Report.

  • A grid map showing the division of the City into the 34 sheets referenced by the City Geologist's Evaluation Report. This map is another tool that can be used to view the City Geologist's recommendations for each individual sheet. Please click on the numbered square for your neighborhood in order to take a closer look at his recommended changes to the Open-Space Hazard Boundary line.  In some areas, neighborhoods may be broken up onto different sheets.  Please click here to access this grid map.

  • A DRAFT General Plan Land Use Map that contains the totality of the City Geologist 's proposed Hazard Area adjustments.  The map shows the existing Hazard areas (indicated in a maroon color) as well as a graphic representation of the Geologist's proposed adjustments to the Hazard areas (indicated in a red cross-hatch graphic). Please click here to view the map.

September 11, 2012 - Review of the Active and Passive Recreational Areas as Part of the General Plan Update

In July 2011, when Staff presented the Commission with all of the Updated General Plan Elements in one combined document with additional proposed text revisions by Staff to help it read better and comment boxes to address specific issues, within the “updated” Conservation and Open Space Element, Staff identified an issue pertaining to the “Active” and “Passive” Recreational areas within the City. 

In an attempt to address the “Active”/”Passive” issue, within the July 26, 2011 Planning Commission Staff Report, Staff proposed an alternative for the Commission’s consideration.  Basically, because Staff felt that there was some un-clarity related to the definitions of “Active” and “Passive”, and that some Parks today have uses that seem to fall within both the “Active” and “Passive” definitions and thus not fitting exactly into one particular category, Staff proposed an alternative that would remove the “Active” and “Passive” designations and simply change the land use designation to “Park”.  After the July 26th Staff Report was released to the public, the City received many email comments expressing concern regarding Staff's draft recommendation to remove the “Active” and “Passive” designations.  Additionally, on August 8, 2011, Staff met with approximately 20 members of the public regarding this issue.  At the meeting, the public asked questions of Staff, and expressed their extreme opposition and displeasure with Staff’s draft text that would eliminate the “Active” and “Passive” designations. 

Realizing that this is a very important issue to the community, on July 26, 2011, the Commission continued the public hearing until such time as Staff has had an opportunity to meet with members of the public and provide at least 30 days notice to the public that this item will be brought back to the Planning Commission. 

Staff is now prepared to bring this issue back to the Planning Commission for discussion at their public meeting to be held on Tuesday, September 11, 2012.  A Draft Staff Report has been prepared that provides a Background and Discussion on the issues along with a Staff recommendation, which in part recommends keeping the “Active” and “Passive” Park designations.  To view the Draft Staff Report please click here

Based on comments received from the public, a final Staff Report will be prepared and presented to the Commission as part of the regular agenda packet that will go out the week prior to the September 11th meeting. 

June 14, 2012 Update

Below is a status report as of June 14, 2012 of each of the “Draft” elements and land use map:

  • Introduction Element (“Draft”):
    • Planning Commission approved the Sub-committee revised “Draft” at their December 8, 2009 meeting (Click here to view a copy).
  • Housing and Social Services Element (“Draft”):
    • Planning Commission approved the “Draft” on December 8, 2009.
    • City Council adopted the “Final” on January 19, 2010. 
    • State Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) certified the “Final” on March 24, 2010.  To view a copy of the “Final” Housing Element, please click here.
    • The completed General Plan will not include the entire Housing Element that was certified by HCD as the Housing Element is a technical document.  Instead the completed General Plan will have an insert that references the Housing Element.  However, along with the Housing Element insert, this section of the General Plan also includes Goals and Policies related to Social Services, including Senior Services.  The “Draft” text of this insert, titled Housing and Social Services, was approved by Planning Commission at their January 11, 2011 meeting.  (Click here to view a copy)
  • Conservation and Open Space Element (“Draft”):
    • Planning Commission approved the “Draft” Conservation and Open Space Element on May 25, 2010 (Click here to view a copy)
  • Safety Element (“Draft”):
    • Planning Commission approved the “Draft” Safety Element on June 8, 2010.  To view a copy of the June 8, 2010 version, please click here
  • Fiscal Element (“Draft”):
    • The Planning Commission approved the “Draft” Fiscal Element at their July 27, 2010 meeting.  To view a copy of the July 27, 2010 version, please click here
  • Land Use Element (“Draft”):
    • The Planning Commission approved the “Draft” at their July 27, 2010 meeting.  To view a copy of the July 27, 2010 version, please click here,
  • Circulation Element (“Draft”):
    • “Draft” Traffic Study has been completed and has been reviewed by the Traffic Safety Commission at their July 26, 2010 meeting.  To view a copy of the “Draft” Traffic Study, please click here
    • The “Draft” Circulation Element was approved by the Traffic Safety Commission at their September 13, 2010 meeting.
    • The Planning Commission approved the “Draft” Circulation Element at their January 11, 2011 meeting.  To view a copy of the “Draft”, please click here.
  • Visual Resources Element (“Draft”):
    • Planning Commission approved the “Draft” Visual Resources Element at their September 28, 2010 meeting.  To view a copy of the “Draft” September 28th version, please click here.
  • Noise Element (“Draft”):
    • Planning Commission approved the “Draft” Noise Element on November 9, 2010 (click here to view a copy).
  • Proposed General Plan Land Use Map Changes (“Draft”):
    • Over the past year, the Planning Commission has also reviewed and approved various “Draft” changes to the General Plan Land Use Map.  To view a copy of each of these changes, please click here.
General Plan Update Background:

The City Council firmly believes that the current General Plan, created and adopted in 1975, is a masterpiece of visionary planning that has served the City well over the past 38 years. However, the Council also acknowledges that certain portions of the General Plan are either outdated or factually incorrect and need a fresh look. Some portions of the Plan that need to be reviewed and updated include traffic, geology and open space from the aspect of existing conditions as well as a vision for the future.

Included in the 1975 General Plan is a list of 28 Goals and 190 policies. These goals and policies were generated by a “grass-roots” organization of over 200 City residents who formed themselves into thirteen committees to look at different elements of the General Plan including land use, recreation and parks, safety and fiscal policy and offer their ideas to guide the future of the City.

As a first step toward updating the General Plan the City Council created a 15-member General Plan Update Steering Committee. The purpose of the committee was to review the existing Goals and Policies of the General Plan and determine which Goals and Policies need to be eliminated, revised or maintained, and if any new Goals and Policies should be proposed, and what technical areas of the General Plan need updating. After over two years of work, on November 4, 2004, the General Plan Update Steering Committee completed their task of reviewing all of the existing goals and policies of the 1975 General Plan. The Steering Committee’s recommendations, along with a General Plan Update Program, were presented to the City Council on December 21, 2004. To find out exactly what changes have been proposed by the Steering Committee, you can access the most recent copy of the "General Plan Goals and Policies - As modified by the General Plan Steering Committee" by clicking below.

At the December 21, 2004 City Council meeting, the Council (1) Directed Staff to proceed with drafting proposed amendments to the General Plan Goals and Policies as recommended by the General Plan Update Steering Committee for future review by the Planning Commission and City Council; (2) Directed Staff to proceed with an update of the factual information within the General Plan for future review by the Planning Commission and City Council; (3) Directed Staff to proceed with the proposed improvements to the general format of the General Plan and the mandatory elements for future review by the Planning Commission and City Council in order to make the Plan more user friendly; (4) Directed Staff to release an RFQ to obtain consultant assistance with updating portions of the General Plan; and (5) Disbanded the General Plan Update Steering Committee.

Progress on the General Plan Update was delayed since the December 21, 2004 Council meeting while Staff focused its attention on a variety of high profile development projects and other issues. In April 2006, Staff sent out a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to obtain consultant assistance with updating the General Plan, and on February 20, 2007, the City Council entered into an agreement with three consulting firms to assist Staff with the update.  Since 2007, Staff has been working with the consultants on revising the document.  

On September 29, 2009, the City Council and Planning Commission held a Workshop with the main purpose of providing a “Kick-off” to the General Plan Update process.  At the Workshop, the Council provided direction to Staff on various items regarding the update process including providing direction on the process.

More Information:
The City’s project manager overseeing the General Plan Update is Deputy Community Development Director Gregory Pfost. He may be contacted by telephone at (310) 544-5228, via e-mail at gregp@rpv.com, or via U.S. Mail at City of Rancho Palos Verdes, 30940 Hawthorne Blvd., Rancho Palos Verdes, California, 90275.

If you would like to be placed on an "interested parties" list to receive any future notices related to the General Plan Update project via e-mail, you may subscribe by joining the list server group here.

“Draft” General Plan Land Use Map Changes:
Click here. to view a copy of the proposed “Draft” General Plan Land Use Map Changes.

“Draft” General Plan Background Studies
Click here to view a copy of the most current “Draft” General Plan Update Traffic Study
Click here to view a copy of the most current “Draft” General Plan Update Noise Study
Click here to view a copy of the most current “Draft” General Plan Update Air Quality Study
Click here to view the “General Plan Goals and Policies - As modified by the General Plan Steering Committee"
Click here to view a copy of the September 2002 “Grass-Roots” Goals Report, which is a non-City sponsored Report prepared by volunteers.

Existing Documents
Click here to view a copy of the 1974 Goals Report
Click here to view a copy of the certified Housing Element
Click here to view a copy of the existing Rancho Palos Verdes General Plan.
Click here to view a list of all of the Goals and Policies contained within the General Plan.
Click here to view a list of the General Plan Amendments that have been adopted by the City Council since the original General Plan was adopted in 1975.