Wave Resort Substantial Issue

From ActCoastal

Month December
Year 2017
Summary This item is an appeal by the Surfrider Foundation of City of Dana Point Local Coastal Development Permit No. 17-0008 approved with conditions for the construction of a two-story, 35,000 square foot commercial development that consists of a 57-room hotel, 52-bed hostel, a 4,000 square foot restaurant, a visitor center, and a parking garage on a 1.6-acre vacant lot.

The Surfrider Foundation filed the appeal, alleging the project’s failure to comply with the Headlands Development and Conservation Plan (HDCP) which is the applicable LCP standard of review, with the City’s certified LCP providing the standard of review where the HDCP is silent. However, Coastal Commission staff recommend finding no substantial issue based on ambiguity within the HDCP.

Surfrider made the case that substantial issue should be found based on several factors. The project would have one or more significant effects not discussed in the previous Environmental Impact Report (EIR) and Headlands Development and Conservation Plan (HDCP). Additional California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) review is required for this project because its scope of work far exceeds that contemplated by the original EIR and the HDCP.

Additionally, only a maximum of 90 keys (rooms) are permitted in Planning Areas 4 and 9 of the HDCP. The applicant proposes 147 keys in these two planning areas. Therefore, the project exceeds the scope and allowable use of the HDCP. In addition, the appellant claims that the intent of the HDCP was for only one hotel in the Headlands development.

Commissioners voted 5-5 on whether or not substantial issue existed. Substantial issue was found and the appeal will come back for a De Novo hearing in the near future.

Outcome Green Dot.png
Outcome Description Commissioner Donne Brownsey motioned to find substantial issue and Commissioner Sara Aminzadeh seconded the motion. Commissioner Steve Padilla made a passionate argument against substantial issue, however, his comments seem to have been centered around planning area 9, while the proposed development would be in planning area 4. Commissioners voted 5-5 on whether or not substantial issue existed. Substantial issue was found and the appeal will come back for a De Novo hearing in the near future.
Why You Should Care The proposed development would take place on a lot that is designated for purposes that would facilitate coastal access to surrounding trails and coastal vantage points. A luxury hotel would negate those purposes and inhibit coastal access for most people. Instead, a robust visitor center, hostel and parking spaces are more appropriate and conform with the HDCP.
Image WaveResort.png
Decision Type Substantial Issue
Staff Recommendation No Substantial Issue
Staff Report
Opposition to Project Surfrider Foundation
Coastal Act Policies Chapter 3 and LCP

Voting Detail for Wave Resort Substantial Issue

Individual vote detail for Issue: Wave Resort Substantial Issue
Donne BrownseyGood Vote
Mary LuevanoBad Vote
Ryan SundbergAbsent for Vote
Steve PadillaBad Vote
Aaron PeskinGood Vote
Sara AminzadehGood Vote
Erik HowellBad Vote
Mark VargasBad Vote
Carole GroomGood Vote
Dayna BochcoAbsent for Vote
Roberto UrangaBad Vote
Effie Turnbull-SandersGood Vote

Meeting Page

View Meeting Page for the meeting where this issue was discussed/voted on.