Appeal Filed on Bay Farm Hotel

 

A Bay Farm resident and a union have appealed a December 2018 Planning Board decision to the City Council. On Dec. 10, 2018, the Planning Board approved the building of a five-story, 175-room Marriott Residence Inn at 2900 Harbor Bay Parkway, adjacent to the Harbor Bay Ferry Terminal. On Dec. 18, Brian Tremper filed an appeal. The following day attorneys representing Laborers International Union of North America, Local Union 304 filed a second appeal. 

At its Tuesday, Feb. 5, meeting the City Council will consider these appeals.

Tremper’s appeal addressed issues that include an inadequate traffic study for the project and the use of an outdated environmental impact report. He pointed out that the developer has provided one traffic study for this project and that the study only provides an assessment of traffic on Harbor Bay Parkway.

In addition Tremper pointed out that the developer and the city used a 45-year-old environmental impact report (EIR) that was updated 32 years ago. The union echoed the appellant’s concern. “Fundamentally, the proposed hotel is an entirely different project than the overall development plan reviewed in the 1974 EIR,” the union states in its appeal. 

The union also points out that “the project is inconsistent with the development plan addressed in the 1974 EIR which states unequivocally that ‘[b]uildings will not ... be closer than 100 feet from the shore.’”

The city’s consultant Environmental Science Associates (ESA) responded to the traffic concerns by pointing out that “a traffic and parking analysis showed that the proposal would not result in any new or substantially more severe traffic impacts to the surrounding area.” 

ESA addressed the EIR concern by stating that once an EIR has been certified … no subsequent EIR shall be prepared for that project.” The consultant also pointed out that the City of Alameda, acting as lead agency determined that the Harbor Bay Isle EIR and the subsequent environmental determinations EIR retained information that was applicable to the proposed project.

The union countered by saying that “because the original EIR did not evaluate any business park proposal … the new proposed hotel is an entirely different project from that considered in the 1974 EIR.” 

ESA, however, concluded it is evident that neither appeal has presented any new information to indicate that the Planning Board’s actions, findings and conclusions: 

  • Were not supported by substantial evidence
  • Were not consistent with General Plan policy
  • Were inconsistent with the purposes and standards of the Zoning Ordinance. 

Even if the developer were to prevail, it has one more hurdle to overcome. 

At 1 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 7, two days after the City Council considers these appeals, the Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) will meet to discuss and decide whether it will require the developer to obtain a BCDC permit.  

The 1965 McAteer-Petris Act charged BCDC with regulating development in and around the Bay. Its commissioners may require a permit for “(San Francisco) Bay-related commercial, recreational and public assembly facilities on privately-owned parts of the Bay,” as well as for “new construction … along the shoreline.”

The commissioners meet in the first-floor conference room of the Bay Area Metro Center at 375 Beale St. in San Francisco.