Planning Commission - Agenda Wednesday, February 07, 2018
CALL TO ORDER:
The Planning Commission was called to order by Chair Dan Hubbell at 6:04 PM in the Council Chambers at 9611 SE 36th Street, Mercer Island, Washington.
Chair Dan Hubbell, Commissioner Ted Weinberg, Lucia Pirzio-Biroli, Bryan Cairns and Carolyn Boatsman were present. Vice Chair Tiffin Goodman and Commissioner Jennifer Mechem were absent.
City staff was represented by Evan Maxim, Planning Manager, Lauren Anderson, Assistant Planner, Alison Van Gorp, Administrative Services Manager/ Ombudsman, Bio Park, Assistant City Attorney, and Andrea Larson, Administrative Assistant.
Commissioner Weinberg moved to approve the January 17, 2018 minutes. Commissioner Boatsman seconded the motion. Commissioner Boatsman clarified that she wanted to ensure that the Planning Commission held panel meetings with the public, which would include a Planning Commission question and answer format, and allow for public comment, as part of the critical areas update. The minutes were approved, as amended, 5-0-0.
No public appearances.
REGULAR BUSINESS: Agenda Item #1: 2018 Comprehensive Plan Amendments Nos. 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 12
Evan Maxim, Planning Manager, gave a short presentation introducing several of the proposed 2018 Comprehensive Plan amendments.
The Commission discussed Comprehensive Plan Amendment Nos. 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6. Following discussion, the Commission supported the proposed staff approach.
The Commission discussed amendment number 9. Following discussion, the Commission supported the proposed staff approach and directed staff to consider approaches to permitting, the adaptive identification of new hazard areas that may result from disasters, and to avoid overly general policy statements.
The Commission discussed amendment number 10. Following discussion, the Commission gave the direction to look into this further, and bring back high level goal statements.
The Commission discussed amendment number 12. Following discussion, the Commission consensus was that a robust decision-making and analysis framework was a valuable tool to the City. Further, the STAR rating system was a valuable lens through which the City could evaluate its decisions. The Commission requested that staff develop goals and policies based upon the Commissionís discussion for further review. The Commission also requested that staff engage in further research regarding the STAR rating system and similar decision-making / analysis frameworks and their use in jurisdictions similar in size to Mercer Island.
The commission broke for recess at 7:58 PM.
The commission reconvened at 8:07 PM.
Agenda Item #2: 2018 Comprehensive Plan Amendments Nos. 11- Green Building Goals and Policies
Lauren Anderson, Assistant Planner, gave a brief presentation introducing the proposed 2018 Comprehensive Plan amendment supporting Green Building techniques in single family residential development.
The Commission discussed amendment number 11. Commissioner Pirzio-Biroli asked that the City look into the living building challenge and passive homes. Commissioner Pirzio-Biroli would also like to look into uses for grey water. Commissioner Pirzio-Biroli cautioned against not letting it become the low standard that developers always design to, rather than an aspirational standard.
The Commission supported the idea of removing unintended barriers to green building.
The Commission supported the idea of incentives and brainstormed a number of different ideas. The Commission does not support using gross floor area as an incentive, because it goes against building green.
The Commission supported the idea of requiring green building for new house construction when a house exceeded 3,000 to 5,000 square feet of gross floor area. The Commission also supported the idea of requiring green building in subdivisions, where the project exceeded either a threshold of lots (e.g. more than 4 lots) or a resultant gross floor area within the subdivision (e.g. exceeding 3,000 to 5,000 square feet of gross floor area.
Commissioner Pirzio-Biroli indicated it was helpful to provide an educational seminar for Planning Commission, city staff, members of the community on what this means to the builders and the community. Commissioner Boatsman suggested that the City look into if there are any grants for building green or housing affordability.
Evan Maxim gave a brief update on Critical Areas Update that was given the go ahead from City Council and about the JCC/French American/ Herzl Ner Tamid code amendment.
Chair Hubbell meeting with the Mayor, Deputy Mayor, and City Manager next week to start doing quarterly updates.
Chair Hubbell encourages commissioners to look at the budget issues messages.
The next regularly scheduled Planning Commission meeting will be February 21, 2018 at 6:00PM at Mercer Island City Hall.
Adjournment: Chair Dan Hubbell adjourned the meeting at 9:01 PM.