Encinitas’ planning staff has concluded that a requirement for developers to create two parking spaces in the rear of a proposed Leucadia tasting room is unfeasible.
The Encinitas Planning Commission on Sept. 11 approved Saint Archer’s request to open a tasting room in the former Fern Boutique, sandwiched between Surfy Surfy and Paddle Planet on North Coast Highway 101.
But the commission requested that staff and the developer try to create two parking spots to allay concerns about the lack of parking at the location.
According to a report by planning staff, the space in the rear of the building isn’t safe for a back-out parking stall due to lack of space and a fence that obstructs driving views.
“Additionally, the back-out depth for a vehicle into the alley from the proposed stall location was deemed unsafe from the City’s Traffic Engineering Division, due to very poor site-visibility for both options and due to location of the approved enclosed dumpster being in the way,” the staff report states. “The parking stall would be located in a blind alley section with garages directly to the west.
“There is not 24 feet available at this section to allow for proper backup from the parking stall to the westerly side of the alleyway (directly in front of a row of one-car garages),” the report continues. “The existing fence obstructs the view from both northerly and southerly directions making this a very dangerous maneuver to expect public patrons to back out in this condition.”
Staff also said that the developer qualifies for a city incentive that would not require a developer to add any additional parking spaces if the floor space isn’t being increased, despite the intensification of use.
Saint Archer, a San Diego brewery that was acquired in 2015 by beer giant MillerCoors, has the blessing of the project’s neighbors, including the popular Surfy Surfy and Coffee Coffee establishments.
“I am really looking forward to having a good neighbor to share our wall with,” JP St. Pierre, the co-owner of Surfy Surfy, said about the tasting room in September.
The Sheriff’s Department, which recommended denying Modern Times’ request for a permit around the same time, has also endorsed Saint Archer’s plans.
Some community members, however, believe Leucadia has an over-saturation of establishments that serve alcohol.
The commission will consider the approval at its Nov. 2 meeting.