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Plan for subdivision and two new homes on Fay Avenue in La Jolla gets approval from San Diego hearing officer

A rendering depicts a residential project planned for the 7300 block of Fay Avenue in La Jolla.
A rendering presented to a San Diego hearing officer depicts a residential project planned for the 7300 block of Fay Avenue in La Jolla.
(Screenshot by Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

After gaining support during local reviews earlier this year, a project to divide a lot on Fay Avenue in La Jolla to build two new houses got the approval of a San Diego hearing officer Oct. 19.

A review by a hearing officer is necessary for projects that reach a certain level of complexity. The officer’s decision can be appealed to the San Diego Planning Commission.

The La Jolla project calls for coastal development and site development permits for a subdivision, demolition of a home and construction of two new single-family residences on separate lots at 7310 and 7312 Fay Ave., with a detached garage on each lot. The project totals 5,254 square feet.

The plan got unanimous support from La Jolla’s Development Permit Review Committee on June 21, with DPR trustees applauding the design and use of the space. Three months later, it got the La Jolla Community Planning Association’s approval.

At the review by hearing officer Patricia Bautista, project manager Catherine Rom of the San Diego Development Services Department said “the site is surrounded by both single-family and multifamily residences, and the community plan designates [the area] for low/medium density of nine to 15 dwelling units per acre. The existing [0.16-acre site] at 7310 has one single-family dwelling.”

Bautista said she had received an opposition letter from neighbor Gerhard Gessner that focused on how a shared sewer line would be rerouted.

Project architect Tim Golba said he was aware of the concern but that “this is something that is far beyond the scope and realm of the coastal development permit and would require research and plumbing engineering.”

“The applicant and the neighbor have been working hand in hand to try and find a solution, but it boils down to their sewer line is a shared line connection to the alley in the rear,” Golba said. “We were made aware of this fairly late in the process.”

Meryl Jimenez, a public utilities reviewer with the city of San Diego, said “each lot has to have its own sewer lateral connection to the public mains, which is what the project is proposing. Sewer laterals shall not cross property lines unless there are no other reasonable options.”

She said a new sewer easement could be granted between the two owners in the future, but it would be a private issue.

With no other opposition, Bautista ruled in favor of the project.

San Diego hearing officer's review of a home development proposed for Fay Avenue in La Jolla
San Diego city staff members and project architect Tim Golba attend a city hearing officer’s review of a home development proposed for Fay Avenue in La Jolla.
(Screenshot by Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

Other development news

The Fay Avenue subdivision was one of three La Jolla projects on the Oct. 19 hearing docket. The others were approved on the consent agenda, meaning there was no presentation or discussion:

La Jolla Shores Drive: A development planned at 9430 La Jolla Shores Drive calls for a coastal development permit to demolish a 1,541-square-foot single-family residence and a 400-square-foot detached garage and build a new 3,382-square-foot, one-story house with a new detached 560-square-foot garage.

The La Jolla Development Permit Review Committee lent its support to the development last year.

Calumet Avenue: A project calls for coastal development and site development permits for the removal of coastal bluff encroachment, plus drainage improvements and exterior remodeling on a site with an existing one-story dwelling at 5340 Calumet Ave.

When the DPR Committee gave the project a preliminary review in September last year, applicant representative AJ Remen said it “was started because there was a natural retreat of the bluff in the southwestern corner” of the seaside property.

Engineer Walter Crampton said the erosion had undermined several walkways at the rear of the property, necessitating stabilization and new drainage. ◆