Overbuilt

The City Council has gone too far and is out of control. Behind my house, the council approved a four-story apartment that contains 24 apartments, 21 of which are micro apartments.

The lot is small and narrow. In 2015 an eight-unit condo project was rejected because it did not follow urban and historic guidelines, nor did it meet necessary setbacks. This project does not meet any of those, yet it was approved. Setbacks were waived, and it will be built on property lines.

The adjacent properties have three buildings, two of which are single-story homes already on the property lines. The Architectural Board of Review waived the requirement for story poles. They have not addressed any of the surrounding residents’ objections. We sent letters and emails to the ABR, City Council, and mayor with no response.

I had to pay $750 to appeal just to be heard. It is difficult to get much information from Sacramento, but from the few people I have talked to, building is not mandatory; it is encouraged by relaxing some of the building codes. On this project at 825 De la Vina, building codes that are designed to protect surrounding properties and to maintain the character of the city were abandoned completely.

The project also includes a commercial space in the front. Why when State Street has a 13 percent commercial vacancy rate is the city adding commercial space? I assume it is a way of getting around the setbacks as commercial requires less.

The area of the project is considered historically sensitive, as many of the houses are over 100 years old. A project of this scale will affect the lateral stability of our properties.

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