firstname.lastname@example.org November 13,
• Update: West Berkeley (Rezoning)
Project Schedule Changes •
Critical Issues TAKEN OFF Planning Commission Nov 19 Agenda
After meeting with the various
stakeholder groups, including WEBAIC, Planning staff have decided to
remove the two most far reaching of the "first wave" of zoning
proposals from their presentation to the Planning Commission on
Wednesday, November 19th at the North Berkeley Senior Center ( MLK
& Hearst). The WEBAIC steering committee suggests that if you
have little time for meetings, your presence would be most valuable
when other critical, structural zoning proposals are brought to the
Planning Commission in the next few months.
The two proposals NOT being presented
1. The percentage of ancillary office space allowed as part of an
industrial use in the four industrial zones.
2. At what size thresholds and with what level of permit review can
space be partitioned in the four industrial zones.
Of the six "obstacles" in the "first wave" of zoning proposals, these
two will have the most significant impact on industrial and
artisan/arts businesses. Also not being addressed at the upcoming
meeting is the less important issue of food service (restaurants) and
where and under what conditions they should be allowed to locate in the
The three proposals-in-concept being
These are the "obstacle" issues and the proposals-in-concept addressing
them that will be presented to the Planning Commission this coming
Wednesday. The WEBAIC steering committee positions on them follow:
1. Mini Storage in the industrial zones.
We believe mini storage is not a productive use for industrial land in
West Berkeley and further location should not be an allowable
use. Mini storage provides very little in the way of good
employment or revenue to the City and these facts are amplified by the
considerable amount of land this use requires.
2. Childcare in the industrial
We believe that having childcare available for West Berkeley workers
and residents is a positive for the community. Therefore, it
should be an allowable use in the MULI and MUR zones as long as special
findings are fullfilled that determine that the location of the
childcare is environmentally suitable for "sensitive receptors", the
children. In the MM district childcare should be allowed as part of a
larger project, with the same requirements for environmental
suitability needing to be made. We do not support childcare as a
use in the M Zone.
3. Retail as an associated,
incidental use to an industrial or artisan business.
Presently, an industrial or artisan use that locates in West Berkeley
is allowed to utilize 10% of their space for incidental retail, to sell
what they produce or handle on site, as long as the request for this
use is made as part of their intial use permit request at the time of
their location here. This option is denied to those who did not
request this initially.
We feel this distinction is arbitrary and has the potential to hinder
the economic viability of existing industrial and artisan/artist
enterprises and should be changed to make this option available to all
companies within these categories, regardless of the time of this
In our opinion, the above three "obstacle" issues have low potential
impact in terms of altering the existing land use regulations
positively or negatively in relation to their effect on West Berkeley
industry and arts uses. There appears to be general agreement as to
their solutions. If you have a difference of opinion on the
above-stated steering committee positions, please let us know. What
staff will be presenting at this upcoming Planning Commission meeting
aren't their final proposals, and the commission will not be voting on
Therefore we suggest you attend this only meeting if you have the extra
time and interest. Steering committee members will be there and,
while we'd appreciate your participation, there will be many more
important times for your voice to be heard in the next few months.
Thanks for being here and helping all of us to be able to say that: