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Hilltop construction project to move forward

City Council denies residents’ appeal of proposed project.

January 24, 2008|By Ruth Longoria

Neighbors below a residential construction project at 4224 Beresford Way have exhausted their limited means of appeal. The La Cañada Flintridge City Council on Tuesday night unanimously denied an appeal launched last fall by the neighbors.

The council discussed the project and appeal during three previous council meetings, each time sending the plans back to city staff for additional details on the project, which includes a two-level, 3,525-square-foot addition to the existing home, and a swimming pool to be perched behind a 5-foot-tall retaining wall.

“We’re confident everything on their plans will work; at some point you have to trust the county to do their due diligence,” Councilwoman Laura Olhasso said after the council unanimously approved the planning department’s recommendation to allow the project to move forward.

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City staff recommended Tuesday the council deny the neighbors’ appeal based on an OK of the plans by Los Angeles County’s building department. The city of La Cañada Flintridge has a contract with the county to look over grading plans, said city planner Patrick Clarke, who briefed the council Tuesday night.

In this instance, the county reviewed the plans and comments were sent back to the city with “very minor corrections, just to clarify a few things,” Clarke said. A specific person within the department did not sign off the plans, he said.

Olhasso said having the county approve the plans made the council confident the project is safe and acceptable. “We always send plans to the county. The final arbitrator of what’s acceptable for building is the county’s building department. That’s normally done after [plans are] approved by the city; but, this time we asked them ahead of time,” she said.

The city also had asked for sandbagging to be done at the property, which had not been done as of the previous council meeting — one of the reasons the council was then displeased with the homeowners’ lack of compliance. The sandbagging was since completed and it appears there was not movement as a result of recent rains, Olhasso said.

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