Bill Lindsay explains the Airpark to the audience and City Council Monday evening. The City Council unanimously approved a unique development east of the Santa Paula Airport that will allow aviators a place to work, play and live. Photo by Stan Goldstein

Airpark receives approval from City Council

January 25, 2008
Santa Paula City Council
By Peggy Kelly Santa Paula TimesThe City Council unanimously approved a unique development east of the Santa Paula Airport that will allow aviators a place to work, play and live.The 37-unit Airpark, which will act as a funding source for the Aviation Museum of Santa Paula, flew over its last hurdle at the January 22 meeting.“We’re very proud this evening to hopefully bring this on home,” noted Planning Director Janna Minsk of the project that will offer condominiums built above airplane hangars.The Council was asked to approve the specific plan and zoning additions and changes to allow the construction on more than 6 acres adjacent to the airport.Contract Planner Joyce Parker-Bozylinski noted that single-family residences near the proposed project would remain although the property is non-conforming.One issue, the inclusion of affordable housing required by the property’s inclusion in the Redevelopment Agency Area, will be addressed with a $771,000 in lieu fee paid to the city.The fee is based on the “uniqueness of the project,” she noted. “...very few of these parks are in the state of California and none in a Redevelopment Agency area, a unique situation.”Each living unit will be from 1,344 square feet to 1,629 square feet and include a fireplace and balcony. Although due to fire codes there will be no internal access to the living units from the hangar space the applicant is considering adding exterior elevators to ease access.Hangars will have room for one airplane and include a bathroom.Councilman Ray Luna questioned the design: “I’ve seen those with stucco and tile roofs on them,” and the Council was told that the design mirrors a “Golden Age of Aviation” design theme.
Councilmen also questioned flood abatement, access and exterior landscaping among other issues.Bill Lindsay of Dour Flyers LLC noted that “It’s really important to us” and to the city that the development will allow the Aviation Museum to establish a “foothold in the city...this gives them the dollars to build a landmark structure that will be permanent” to take the place of the current series of hangers that hold exhibits.Lindsay also noted that the developers have worked with numerous agencies from Caltrans to the Ventura County Watershed Protection Agency on the project.“I don’t know what agency you didn’t come across,” said Councilman John Procter. “...this is probably one of the most innovative things to come along, but also one of the most difficult” to garner the approval of the various agencies involved in the permitting process.Vice Mayor Ralph Fernandez questioned several aspects including noise to nearby residents and the Council was told that impacts would be minimal as the planes taxi to the airport runway and deadened by landscaping and possibly a wall.“...the project is something that Santa Paula can be proud of,” said Fernandez.Councilman Dr. Gabino Aguirre questioned air traffic increases and the airport’s lack of a control tower and learned that many of those expressing an interest in the park already are based at the airport.As the city moves forward with development Aguirre said the Council must create policy for the use of affordable housing in lieu funds.“I do compliment the partners...I know the project was a long time coming,” and staff also deserves credit noted Mayor Bob Gonzales.

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