CARLSBAD — The City Council approved the demolition of a single-family home on 735 Laguna Dr. to build five three-story condominiums at a meeting Tuesday night.
Zephyr Partners plans to build the condos located on what Mayor Matt Hall called, a premium lot.
Hall was the only one to deny approval of the plan because he didn’t think the design quality was suitable for the Village.
“If you’re going to have a B or a C product, than you’re never going to get the value that the Village commands,” Hall said.
He said he wants to see more projects like the mixed-use building that was just approved on State Street and Oak Avenue.
“It’s much more of a wow, with lots of lighting features and much more character,” Hall said of the four-story building that was approved last month.
The Laguna Condominiums will range from 2,032 square feet to 2,292 square feet.
Three of the units will be attached and two will be detached.
Each will have roof decks and two-car garages.
Councilman Michael Schumacher approved the Laguna Condominiums because, he said, the artist renderings aren’t always an accurate reflection of the buildings.
“Sometimes these illustrations don’t reflect the quality of the product that’s going to be built, and I hope that’s the case here,” Schumacher said.
The architect, Mark Gross, told the council that he incorporated elements from planation style homes, similar to ones found in Hawaii and that some of the intricate detail is difficult to see on the renderings.
“We’ve got really intricate balconies… (with) crisscrossing woodwork, so they’ll be some really rich elements when this project is built. It comes to life,” Gross said.
Mayor Pro Tem Keith Blackburn said the condos are better than a dirt lot with a chain-link fence.
The Planning Commission recommended approval of the project because “the project helps meet the goals and objectives for the Village in that it increases the number of quality houses near transit, develops an under-utilized lot at the appropriate density and provides a visually appealing project that can stimulate new developments,” said Assistant Planner Austin Silva.
According to Vice President of forward planning at Zephyr, Jim McMenamin, a past project was approved in 2006.
Architect Gross said the past project was “kind of harsh” and didn’t have any soft details.
The approved buildings will have plantation-style shutters and pot shells which weren’t represented in the renderings.
McMenamin said they had hoped the rooftop balconies would have views of the lagoons but after sending a drone up, they found that wasn’t the case.
Mayor Hall said he hopes the upcoming city Master Plan update will have design guidelines to preserve the quality of the Village.
The new project is one of big projects approved in recent months. Along with the mixed-use building on State Street, another project is under construction to build 47 townhomes, called State Street Townhomes.
They are being built just south of Laguna Drive and are replacing a demolished commercial building.