Planning dudes, dudettes abide by use-permit
Rock ‘N Bowl moved one step closer to actuality this Wednesday at the Planning Commission Meeting in Suite Z. Architect Bruce Woodward presented and answered questions regarding the project, a 12-lane bowing alley with pool tables, darts, 3 golf simulators, a restaurant and bar.
Some of the specs: the two story, 25,300 square foot building, to be located between the Castoff and Southern California Edison on Chateau Road, will be 33 feet tall at the tallest, with a front yard setback of 20 feet.
The building will include four colors: the primary color is a tan vertical ribbed metal siding, and green vertical ribbed siding, raw steel lapped siding, and brick red horizontal ribbed siding will be used as accent colors. The project will provide a color mock-up on site prior to the construction of the building, as well as a sample board that can be turned to show the metal in shade and sunlight.
Rock ‘N Bowl will provide 37 on-site parking spaces, and 17 additional spaces will be offered off-site, most likely through an agreement with one or more property owners to do shared parking. A sign of steel, stained wood and halo-lit letters reading “Mammoth Rock ‘N Bowl, food, fun and games for everyone,” will sit at the Northwest corner of the lot. Due to Sign Ordinance constraints, the sign square footage has been reduced from 31.5 to 29.5 square feet.
Lighting will be night sky compliant, and Community Development Director Mark Wardlaw pointed out that “the municipal code has noise regulations, and we enforce those.” The bowling alley will be open on weekend nights until 1 a.m., with weekday hours to be determined.
The most contentious issue remained the number of parking spaces. As The Sheet previously reported, Woodward and team were able to winnow down the 140 parking spaces originally required by the town to 37. Now town staff, including Wardlaw, Senior Planner Ellen Clark, Associate Planner Pam Kobylarz, and Senior Associate Civil Engineer Peter Bernasconi, have determined that because of the parking demand for all uses, Rock ‘N Bowl must provide a total of 54 spaces. The current lot only has enough room for 37, therefore the additional 17 will be provided off site. Rock ‘N Bowl will also provide 5 on-street parking spaces that will help supplement the overall parking, but pursuant to code, these spaces can’t be counted toward the total.
Another concern was the sign, which Sign Ordinance dictates must stand at a maximum of 8 feet. The Commission and staff debated whether 2 10 ½ foot vertical steel beams supporting the sign could be allowed to exceed that 8-foot height limit if they were a ‘necessary structural design issue,’ which Woodward admitted they were not, or if they might be necessary for visibility come winter. Woodward explained that he “wanted something you can see when looking down Old Mammoth Road. The sign will still be considerably smaller than most old signs in town.”
Some of the Commission’s other concerns included snow storage, given the Rock ‘N Bowl site was previously used for just that; the texture of concrete on the building, which Woodward pointed out accounts for only about 1% of the overall building material; roof color; and landscaping. Woodward was amenable to all suggestions, although Commissioner Elizabeth Tenney’s concern that any shrubs would be “trashed” in snow storage areas, and her suggestion that Woodward use “perennials and wildflowers, like Roberto’s and the Post Office,” sparked a debate within the Commission. “I respectfully disagree,” said Vice Chairman Jay Deinken. “At my home we’ve had bushes and plants that come back just fine from winter.”
Overall the Board had few complaints with the project. The public was also largely behind it. “I’m fully in favor of this project,” said Dave Harvey. “Many of us in town have been waiting for this project to come along. In this economic environment, it’s great we’ve got someone willing to take a risk.” Of issues like parking and signage, Harvey had only this to say: “If we’re going to be a feet-first community, let’s act like it.”
The Commission found the project to be categorically exempt from CEQA, and approved both the Use Permit and Design Review.