Redesign for Cayucos beach house heads back to Planning Commission

dsneed@thetribunenews.comApril 5, 2014 

The county Planning Commission Thursday will again consider the fate of controversial plans to build a beachfront home in Cayucos.

In January, the commission asked Jack Loperena to redesign his proposed Studio Drive house to address some complaints from neighbors. The chief concern was the fact that the house would extend over the beach.

Loperena has done the redesign, and the county planning staff is recommending that the residence be approved. Some area residents remain opposed to the plan, but others are rallying to support it.

The home would be built on a vacant lot near the intersection of Studio Drive and Highway 1. Originally, plans called for a balcony to extend 28 feet over the beach.

At the behest of the Planning Commission, plans have been redrawn to shorten the overall length of the home by 20 feet and give it a more traditional architectural design.

These changes have earned the support of seven people who wrote letters to the commission urging approval. They said the Loperena family has met all the requirements for their home.

“The Loperenas have responded to their neighbors’ concerns by redesigning their home to be set back further from the beach,” wrote Kris Grabow of San Luis Obispo. “I urge you to give them the long-sought building permit so they can get on with their project at last.”

But others disagree, saying that the home still fails to comply with several coastal development rules.

“Like all other houses in that neighborhood that were built recently or remodeled, they must set the home 25 feet back from the coastal bluff and do a study to determine it will be safe from coastal erosion for 100 years,” said Don Funk, a planner with the firm Earth Design representing neighbors.

Any Planning Commission decision can be appealed to the county Board of Supervisors and ultimately the state Coastal Commission.

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