Speak now or forever* hold your peace…

**UPDATE ~  06/07/18**

General Plan Amendment Case No. GPA-2-18-43787 Public Hearing Date of 04/11/18 LOST 6-1 at the Planning Commission Hearing and appears to be shelved for the unforeseeable. A big Thank You to all those who wrote in and showed up downtown to help with the fight recently and over the years. We really thought we had gotten about 90% of what were asking for and were at the end of this long 4 year battle.

We are now in limbo for appears to be until 2021* at the earliest! We’ll let you know when we hear anything.

For now….   back to square 1 😦

(*i.e. after the next two city council election cycles after all Voting Districts have council representation and the General Plan is re-visited in it’s entirety)


Original Post

After 4+ years of back and forth with the city of Ventura; the time has finally arrived!!

The Refinement to the current City of Ventura General Plan is FINALLY up for a vote before the City Planning Commission this Wednesday at 6pm. After that vote, it goes before the city council to be ratified.

* most likely many years before another opportunity comes along to amend this document and then may be too late! This is your LAST CHANCE for input on this document.

We are pleased to report that most of the items the Montalvo Community has been pushing for during this time, we’ve got!!

• 204 Parcels within Montalvo Neighborhood Area that are currently zoned R-1– 6 change from Residential Neighborhood Medium to Neighborhood Low Land Use designation to reflect the Montalvo Community Councils request in preserving the neighborhood character;
• Three parcels within Moon Drive Overlay and three parcels within the Montalvo Neighborhood Area change from Residential Neighborhood High to Neighborhood Medium Land Use designation to reflect the Montalvo Community Councils request in preserving the neighborhood character;
• Three parcels within Montalvo Neighborhood Area that are currently zoned Commercial Planned Development (CPD) within existing commercial development from Residential Neighborhood Medium to Commerce Land Use designation;
• Restrictions on Adult Businesses & Homeless Shelters;
• Overlay Zones that reduce Commercial Building Heights in several areas to
cap at 3 stories (down from 6).
A FULL list of items can be fund here (pages 16-20)

There is only one major UN-resolved concern in the Staff Report (pg. 16)
As currently proposed, the commercial building height cold be as high as 45’+ along Victoria Ave. with the properties that share a rear property with the Alameda Ave. property owners. Any future building heights above 36′ would have a significant impact on privacy and sunlight for these existing single story homes. This is our only chance to protect them. See our 2016 shade study graphics for reference.


General Plan Amendment Case No. GPA-2-18-43787 Public Hearing Date of 04/11/18 6pm

  1. ATTEND the Planning Commission Meeting Wednesday April 11,2018  6pm
    Council Chambers, 501 Poli Street. Meeting Agenda Can Be Found Here
    ~ BE THERE to support your community and council for the things we ARE getting
    and to ensure that those promised items stay in the document until ratified by the
    city council.                              &
    ~ FILL OUT a comment card to address the Commissioners
    ~ FILL OUT a speaker card to address the Commissioners
  2. WRITE your Planning Commissioners; Deadline April 11, 2018 5:00p,
    -2 pages maximum (including exhibits); Number of copies to be submitted (15)
     Address: 501 Poli St,. Council Chambers, Ventura, CA 93001
    -eMail them at pc@cityofventura.ca.gov
  3. CALL your Planning Commissioners; Deadline April 11, 2018 5:00p,
    -Phone: 805-654-7893
  4. (Bonus way! Share this info with your neighbors ASAP!!)
    you do not to be in the Montalvo boundaries!
The Planning Commission has adopted Protocols for how their meetings are run. These Protocols are available at: https://www.cityofventura.ca.gov/DocumentCenter/View/8414

If you want to avoid this type of living situation, do one or all 3 of the aboveIMG_3670

The MCC has submitted a letter (below) and will speak at the Planning Commission Meeting this Wednesday.  If you are a concerned resident, please join us to make your feelings known.  This will be the final opportunity for public comment before the General Plan will be adopted. -Thank you!

Your MCC Board submitted this letter today (04/09/18)

Ventura City Planning Commission Councilmembers
City Hall 501 Poli St
Ventura, CA 93001

RE: General Plan Refinement Project No: 12142
General Plan Amendment Case No. GPA-2-18-43787
Public Hearing Date of 04/11/18


Dear Planning Commission Councilmembers and Planning Staff,

The Montalvo Community Council has reviewed the latest iteration of the General Plan Refinement, Public Comment Letters and Staff Report before you. We are thankful to the Planning staff for multiple meetings with our board and assisting in community engagement during this long multi-year process.  We feel that the Council and Staff have honored our community concerns related to the heights of future neighboring commerce buildings along the Victoria Corridor.  We look forward to future development that is compatible with our neighboring Single Family Residential homes.

When the City of Ventura adopted the 2005 General Plan, followed by the Victoria Avenue Corridor Plan & Development Code in April 2009, a portion of the Victoria Corridor and neighboring Montalvo was still part of the unincorporated area under county jurisdiction. During these planning phases, the Montalvo residents were not a part of the planning/development conversations for this area. It was only after the Montalvo area became incorporated into the city in September 2012, that the area residents became familiar with The Ventura General Plan & The Victoria Corridor plan and their respective proposals for our little community. Since then, the citizens of the Montalvo area have been working with the city Planning staff and councils to remedy the General Plan for future growth to be congruent with our little 65+ year old neighborhood.

At the meeting on September 12, 2016 the City Council voted 5-1 to approve staff recommendations for the general plan refinement with amendments. One important amendment made to item number 5 was to “incorporate the Montalvo Community Council’s recommendations.” We want to thank the staff for following the council’s instructions and making our community’s requested changes.

We (and the community we serve) are most pleased and grateful for the majority of the changes made to the General Plan during this refinement process. We felt compelled to address the recent resulting public comments and staff report now before this agency.

1) Building Heights along the T4.5 Victoria Ave. within the Moon Drive Overlay area.

We agree with the staff report that a 24′ overall building height limitation would be limiting to commercial development.  “2 ½ story structures with a maximum height of 30 feet.”  overall height limit, matching the neighboring R-1 zoning description, would be acceptable for future development.  We also do not object to a 15′ minimum ground floor height as long as the overall building height does not exceed 30′.  Our goal is to mitigate privacy and sunlight concerns for the R-1 Alameda Ave. property-owners and residents. The community would like to see any future development on the portion of Victoria Ave. that shares a property line with those on Alameda Ave., be compatible with one another, rather than looming over them. Even with a 30’ height limitation, roofing pitch, elevator bulkheads and other rooftop mounted equipment atop commercial buildings will add significant height and shadowing well above the 30’ limit that will affect the Alameda properties. Our primary intent for the General Plan in this area is to mitigate that building heights be compatible with current single story homes in the area. Please see attached Exhibits A-C that express our sunlight and privacy concerns. The current Moon Drive Overlay Resolution 84-85, required alley widths of 20’ and setbacks of 5’ also aid in mitigating these concerns.

2) Kim Ingram (IS-MND) Comment Letter Dated 03/09/18

On 01/24/2017, Mr. Kim was kind enough to attend our public MCC community meeting and presented/lead a discussion with the attendees about his future plans for developing his three Alameda Ave. property parcels into a future Senior Care facility. Most in attendance were engaged in the discussion and generally supportive of Mr. Ingram’s plans for his parcel and welcomed the idea of this type of facility in our neighborhood.

The community is supportive of Mr. Ingram’s project and understands the impact that the current proposed General Plan Refinement would have on his future development plans.  We did not take his project into consideration during our back and forth with the city. We would have no issue with the Planning Commission making amendments for these parcels of the Moon Drive Overlay to accommodate Mr. Ingram’s requests and defer to the Planning Commission’s judgment on this matter. We would ask that a 3-Story limitation be applied, as was in Mr. Ingram’s proposal to our community last year. Our hope for this area has always been to actas a transitional area bridging the Commercial and Island View Apartments adjacent to single family residences.

We do not object to future commercial development along Victoria Ave. We just want to ensure that what will come in the future is compatible with its neighbors who have been here much longer.

It’s been a long process working with the different agencies assisting us in our transition since our little community was annexed into the city back in 2012. We as a community would like to express our sincere thanks to City Planning Staff (especially Mr. Holt, Mr. Lambert & Mr. Ward), the City Council General Plan Refinement Ad hoc Committee, the City Planning Commission and the City Council (past and current members) for working with us to refine the General Plan to a document that promotes thoughtful and reasonable growth while remaining sensitive to our 65+ year old community.

Respectfully submitted on behalf the MCC Board.

Central Ventura County Fire Safe Announces Dates for Free Chipper Days

Yard Waste Flyer

Central Ventura County Fire Safe Council
Contact: Jenise Wagar-Hernandez, 805.804.7735
For Immediate Release – March 28, 2018
Central Ventura County Fire Safe Announces Dates for Free Chipper Days
The Central Ventura County Fire Safe Council (CVCFSC) is pleased to share the calendar for 17 Chipper Day events that will assist homeowners throughout western Ventura County with a free and easy way to create defensible space around their homes.

Funding is provided by a grant from the Cooperative Fire Program of the U.S. Forest Service, Department of Agriculture, Pacific Southwest Region, through the California Fire Safe Council. The CVCFSC is working with the Ventura County Fire Protection District, and Fire Departments from the cities of Ventura, Santa Paula and Fillmore to implement the project.

According to CVCFSC Project Manager Charlotte Crocker, “We are honored to receive this
federal grant to expand our fire mitigation and education efforts . This project gives us a unique opportunity to collaborate with local Ventura County fire agencies. In light of the recent Thomas Fire we are proud to be able to offer such a valuable service to residents, supporting them in their efforts to make their property fire-safe”. Sustained high temperatures and drought conditions over the past five years have created dangerous fire conditions and chipping is a great way to clear your property of potential fire hazards. In addition, the grant provides funding for a community education and outreach campaign designed to teach residents ways to keep their property safe and to mitigate damage from potential fires. Youth workshops are currently underway through a partnership with the City of Ventura at Montalvo Elementary, DATA and Westpark Community Center and sessions are being planned in Piru, Fillmore and Santa Paula in
conjunction with the Santa Clara Valley Boys and Girls Club.

The dates for the Chipper Days are available on the CVCFSC website at www.cvcfiresafe.org

Two types of Chipper Days will be offered:
Curbside– Residents are asked to pile yard waste in a location easily accessible by the chipping vehicle. Residents must pre-register for free timeslot at www.cvcfiresafe.org
Drop-off- Simply drop off eligible yard waste at the location designated. Residents are asked to sign up for a time slot at www.cvcfiresafe.org. The first 25 to sign up on-line will receive a free homeowner toolkit backpack.

There are specific requirements related to the type of material that can be chipped, so residents are encouraged to visit the website for details. Residents may call 805.402.6092 for more information.