Sebastopol Citizens

Educate - Communicate

Topics and Issues...

CVS/Chase Bank Project

Pellini pic

December 30, 2015 - Status Report on CVS -
Sebastopol Citizens interviews the City Planner, Kenyon Webster, to find out the latest on this project.

Chase Bank has dropped from the project.

There is an expectation that demolition and construction will begin in 2016. Pellini closed for business 8 years ago.

Read more in this brief report from Dan Swedenborg.

October 9, 2014 - Final vote taken, project approved 3:2 - Despite voting 5:0 in closed session on October 6, Mayor Jacob and Councilmember Eder vote NO in the public session. Legal fees for the City stand at $336,000.
Read more in this Sonoma West article and in this PD article.

July 1, 2014 - A tentative agreement is announced - drive-throughs eliminated, solar panels added, traffic issues clarified with CVS kicking in $150k towards the effort.
Read more on the City website.

April 17, 2014 - Litigation update - "Settlement talks underway in Sebastopol CVS lawsuit" An April 24 court date has been delayed to June 5 to work on a possible settlement - Read this PD story.

February 18, 2014 - On the litigation frontlines - "Federal judge may dismiss CVS lawsuit against Sebastopol" - Read this PD story.

December 17, 2013 - City Council Meeting - A quick 5:0 vote allocates another $150k to CVS litigation defense, bringing this year's budgeted amount to $300k total.
Read more in this PD story "Legal bill in Sebastopol CVS fight hits $300,000."

January 15, 2013 - City Council Meeting - extends moratorium on drive-thrus from 45 days to 10 additional months. Read the meeting notes from Kelly Swedenborg.

January 1, 2013 - Armstrong Development follows through on their threat of litigation, suing the City of Sebastopol over the drive-through moratorium, story in the PD.

December 18, 2012 - City Council Meeting - key action:

  • Passes by 5-0 vote an "emergency" moratorium on all drive-throughs, unless you already have an approved building permit. This directly affects the CVS/Chase project. Armstrong Development threatens litigation. (PD story)

Note: Between these two Council meetings, an election was held. The election was almost entirely reduced to a referendum on this project, with opponents of the project winning the two open seats. The December 18 meeting is the second of the new Council, and this was their first action that affects this project.

August 21, 2012 - City Council Meeting - Sebastopol Community Center - Yet one more 6+ hour meeting (is this really the last on this topic?) results in final approval granting the appeal with the 2 conditions described at the previous meeting. Conditions accepted by applicant. Read more in John Necker's summary and in Bob Norberg's PD story.

August 7, 2012 - City Council Meeting - Sebastopol Community Center - Another 6+ hour marathon meeting results in granting the appeal with 2 main conditions: 1) an access door must be included on the main intersection corner for the CVS building; additional doors at descretion of applicant, and 2) the in-only entrance on Petaluma Ave needs to be built as emergency-access only, with an understanding that the applicant can revisit this with the Council if it proves problematic. Read more in John Necker's summary and in Bob Norberg's PD story.

The vote to grant the appeal was 3-2.
YES: Wilson, Shaffer, Slayter
NO: Gurney, Kyes

July 17 and July 19, 2012 - City Council Meetings - Sebastopol Community Center - Over 10 hours of meetings over these two days, nearly all of the time spent addressing the appeal of DRB's latest rejection of the CVS/Chase project. Read summaries of both meetings - July 17 and July 19 - both from SC's John Necker. Public comment is now closed, a decision is expected at the next Council Meeting on August 7.

June 14, 2012 - Armstrong to appeal again - Following the rejection by the DRB, Armstrong Development will appeal to the City Council. Read more in Bob Norberg's PD story.

May 30, 2012 - Design Review Board meeting - by a 4-1 vote, the DRB rejects the latest design presented by Armstrong Development. Read more in Derek Moore's PD story.

Pellini picMay 16, 2012 - Design Review Board meeting - new design presented - split reception, read more in Bob Norberg's story in the PD.

Apr 18, 2012 - Armstrong Development files with a new design, expected that proposal will go before Design Review Board on May 16. Read more from David Abbott in his pic at SWstory at the Sonoma West, and in Bob Norberg's PD story.

Feb 21, 2012 - The Council rejects again, after hours of discussion and tweaking of staff-generated findings, the appeal from Armstrong Development by the same 3-2 vote. Read more in Bob Norberg's PD story, and a meeting summary from SC's John Necker.

PD pic Feb 7, 2012 - The Council rejects the appeal from Armstrong Development of the earlier rejection of the DRB, by a vote of 3-2. Read Bob Norberg's story in the PD. City staff is now to produce findings to support this position and return them to Council for approval, expected Feb 21. Armstrong to consider next steps.

Voting to reject the appeal: Wilson, Gurney, Kyes
Voting to grant the appeal: Shaffer, Slayter

Feb 1, 2012 - Chris Smith's column in the PD - Apparently Clare Najarian, a Council-appointed member of the Planning Commission, believes she should decide who is allowed to attend public meetings. Read about her rude, inappropriate behavior in Smith's PD column, "She said what to the supervisor?" A followup apology is noted here at the PD.

Jan 23, 2012 - Special City Council meeting to conduct a hearing on the CVS/Chase project, as a result of an appeal made to the Council by the applicant. This follows from the rejection by the Design Review Board (on Dec 7, 2011). In his PD story, Bob Norberg reports a 2-1 majority in favor of the project among the 250 attendees. Council is to make their decision on Feb 7.

Dec 7, 2011 - Design Review Board meeting - application was denied by 3-1 vote (for denial: Peter Schurch, Lynn Deedler, Bob Beauchamp. Against: Zachary Douch)

July 5, 2011 - After two contentious meetings at the Planning Commission, with a final 4-2 vote on June 14 against the project, the applicant appealed to the City Council. Council upheld the appeal, reversing the Planning Commision's vote.

Key vote in support of the appeal: 4 in favor (Wilson, Kyes, Shaffer, Slater), 1 opposed (Gurney). Gurney wanted the issue sent back to the Planning Commission, but did not have support.

Project Background

This project would develop the currently vacant Pellini Chevrolet property with new buildings and parking. It would also relocate Barnes Avenue to the eastern edge of the site next to Benedetti's. The current eight parcels would be reduced to two. Two businesses would occupy the site - CVS would relocate from their current location at Redwood Marketplace; Chase Bank would open a new business on the site.

You can download several documents related to the project from the city website. Read more on pro's and con's in our SC summary.

Applicant contacts:
Architect Kevin Kellogg
Agent Bill McDermott

Link to the Design Review Board on the city website.

From the News...a few items...

Read the coverage on the Council vote in this Sonoma West story 7/7/11.

Group sues to nullify Council's decision, and require a full traffic study in this PD story 8/9/11. Sonoma West story on 8/17/11. And from the same issue of Sonoma West - columns from Pete and Pauline Pellini, from Guy Wilson regarding his vote to proceed with the project, and many letters to the editor.

Letters to the Sonoma West continue in the 8/24 edition, 8/31 edition.