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‚ÄúCitrange‚Ä̬†

25 Detached Single-Family Homes

&

Trinity Lutheran Church 

Sanctuary Building Renovation & Expansion

11716 Floral Drive, Whittier CA

Brandywine Homes, Inc. & Trinity Lutheran Church

 

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

Former School Classrooms

Church Front Facade on Floral Drive

Aerial Campus View Looking Southeast

Revitalization 

Trinity Lutheran School ceased operations in 2016, and the four school buildings are currently vacant and in disrepair. The iconic main sanctuary and steeple was constructed in 1964 and needs refurbishment to fit the current needs of the congregation. Deferred maintenance at the facility is impacting the surrounding neighborhood. The church determined that a sale of the school property would allow them to preserve and modernize their existing location in Whittier. 

Reconstruction

Planning for the proposed sale and redevelopment of the 2.5-acre site began at the end of 2016.  The proposed project includes demolition of the church administration building, an attached gymnasium, two school buildings, and two smaller storage sheds.  The sale would provide funds to develop a new Parish Hall, refurbished parking lot, a new front facade and landscaping improvements along Floral Drive.

 

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

The Need for New Single-Family Homes

Whittier is a prime location for households looking to buy a new moderately-priced home.  Whittier offers proximity to employment, an established full-service municipality, and a central location within the desirable Southern California market.  Los Angeles County lacks the supply to meet the projected housing demand, and SCAG (Southern California Association of Governments) allocates regional growth share of about 500 new households to Whittier in the next ten years.   Whittier’s housing element identifies a 57% homeownership rate among Whittier households; two-thirds of the existing housing stock is single-family detached.  The proposed project fits this profile and will augment the most common housing type in the City.  The Housing Element also identifies an aging stock, with two-thirds of the housing constructed prior to 1960.  Only 3% of the housing stock is newer than 1990.

Advantages of Infill Development

The reuse of existing development sites, (‚ÄĚInfill Development‚ÄĚ), has many advantages over traditional greenfield development.¬† Placing homes in town near existing jobs reduces commute mileage, makes efficient use of existing infrastructure, City services and utilities; and allows for modern, energy efficient structures to replace older, outdated, and inefficient buildings.¬† All homes will be constructed with solar photovoltaic systems standard and will incorporate the latest energy efficiency technology as required by the California Energy Commission.¬† Deficient drainage conditions will also be corrected, and any existing environmental hazards (lead, asbestos) will be carefully removed from the neighborhood during construction.

Brandywine’s Commitment to the Neighborhood

The City of Whittier will collect approximately $420,000 in impact fees from this project, which will be used to enhance capital facilities related to municipal services.  Additionally, Brandywine will provide in-kind improvements to the Floral Drive street frontage, including new sidewalk, landscaping, street-lighting, and removal of overhead utility lines.  Brandywine has extensive experience working within existing neighborhoods and knows how to minimize construction impacts that commonly occur.   The site plan has been carefully designed to reduce privacy concerns with adjacent R-2 zoned homes located on Orange Avenue through the use of privacy windows facing the perimeter. 

Partnership with Trinity Lutheran Church

The future of Trinity Lutheran Church in Whittier is greatly enhanced by this project.   The partnership will provide for:

  • removal of the deteriorating school and administration buildings.
  • a solution to the ongoing maintenance, crime, and vagrancy
  • enhanced safety through fencing, lighting, and modern home security technology.¬†¬†

Trinity’s long history of serving the Whittier community can be expected to continue with the same worship, community and civic functions operating on a smaller footprint in its historic location.

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

First Meeting Location - 1908

First Parish Hall on Penn St. - 1922

Trinity Lutheran School - Founded in 1943

Trinity Lutheran School Float - 1945

Floral Drive Groundbreaking - 1950

Construction of First School Building on Floral Drive - 1950

Floral Drive Parish Hall Groundbreaking - 1958

New Parish Hall Dedicated - December 1958

Preserving Trinity Lutheran Church's Long & Rich History in Whittier

History

Trinity Lutheran Church has had a constant presence in Whittier for over 112 years, beginning in a small home in East Whittier in 1908. Trinity Lutheran formally organized with five families comprising charter membership on January 24, 1909. Over the next half-century, the congregation established deep roots in Whittier, relocating and constructing their school facilities on Floral Drive in 1950; and the eventual relocation of their congregation with the construction of a Parish Hall in 1958 and a large sanctuary in 1964. The Fireside Room fronting on Floral Drive was added in 1983.

 

The Development of Access Land and Renovation & Expansion of the Existing Sanctuary Will Allow Trinity to Revitalize in Order to Continue Fulfill Its Mission Statement

‚ÄúTrinity Lutheran Church of Whittier, guided by the Great Commission of Jesus Christ (Matthew 28:19-20), is committed to preach and teach the Word of God and administer the Sacraments for the forgiveness of sins, life and salvation. By the power of the Holy Spirit, we nurture and equip God‚Äôs people to be the light of Christ in our communities and world.‚ÄĚ

Trinity Lutheran Church is a ‚ÄúChrist-centered place of refuge for broken sinners to taste and see that the Lord is good!‚ÄĚ

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

Zoning and General Plan

The proposed plan requests a change in the General Plan designation from Public-School to Medium Density Residential, and the zoning designation from R-1 Single Family Residential to R-2 Light Multiple Density Residential. 

Under the new zoning, the Church plans to continue operation under a conditional use permit on 1.05 acres of the site, limiting the potential residential development on the remaining 2.54 acre parcel to a maximum of 38 homes. 

The proposed development plan of 25 homes is at about 66% of what the zoning would allow (9.8du/ac vs. max of 15 du/ac). Earlier discussions with the City contemplated townhome product with up to 34 homes. The development plan was subsequently scaled back in discussion with planning staff to facilitate good planning integration with the existing land uses to the south and north. The R-4 development Magnolia Terrace located immediately east is constructed at 32.7du/ac, and the existing duplexes located on Orange Drive to the south are developed at 12.4 du/ac.  The proposed development, at 9.8du/ac is at a lower density than both adjacent neighborhoods.

 

Residential Site Plan

The residential site plan features 25 detached homes, ranging from 1953sf to 2013sf.  Floor plans will feature 3 to 4 bedrooms and up to 3 bathrooms.  Access to the residential community is from Floral Drive just east of Westmont Drive.  Existing land uses to the south and east are at equal or higher residential density.  Homes plotted along these edges meet the required setback for R-2 zoning. The proposed plan, initially presented to the City with 34 attached town-homes, has been revised to 25 detached single-family homes for compatibility with surrounding land uses. The plan meets all requirements for R-2 zoning, including open space, setbacks and height restrictions.

 

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

Church Site Plan

Trinity’s footprint shrinks from 3.6 acres to 1.05 acres with the elimination of the school, parish hall, and administrative building. A new façade will be added to the front of the existing sanctuary, and a new parish hall will be constructed at the south end of the existing sanctuary. The church’s iconic bell tower will remain in place, as will the main sanctuary building.  A modern parking lot will be constructed at the location of the existing parking, but with the addition of safety lighting, landscaped islands, and trees. While not required, Trinity has agreed to allow for overflow residential guest parking beyond the required number of guest spaces, as a gesture to the neighborhood to prevent residential parking spillover. The new parking lot has been sized appropriately for the reformatted church buildings, and a parking demand study was conducted to determine the adequate number of parking spaces.

 

Church Architecture

The existing roofline and belltower will be preserved and renovated. The new parish hall will be added to the front, visible from Floral Drive.  The architectural style reflects clean lines of the Prairie Style movement, a transitional style melding the 1960s-style sanctuary with the 1940s & 1950s home styles found in the surrounding neighborhood.

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

Amenities

Trinity Church Landscape Concept

Residential Landscape Concept 

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

Residential Design - Quality Architecture

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

Location of Orange Drive Residences in Relation to Subject Property

Privacy windows facing existing Orange Drive residences, rear yard condition. 15’ setback to property line for new construction.  Properties located on Orange Drive are zoned R-2 and are allowed to develop two-story homes at densities up to 15 dwelling units per acre.

Rear setbacks at existing properties along Orange Drive range from 0’ to 15’ along the property line.

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

Parking Improvements
Minor Traffic Impact
Noise

On-street parking was identified by City staff as a potential impact to evaluate.   Current utilization of weekday on-street parking on Floral Drive peaks at 74% along the north side of the street during the AM school rush hour.  Parking along the south side of Floral peaks at 70% at 11.00am.   Parking in the Trinity lot peaks at 15% capacity during mid-day.  On Sundays, on-street parking peaks at 68% near mid-night along the north side of Floral, while the church lot peaks at 79% capacity during mid-morning services.   Both the church and residential project are providing the required number of parking space (64 residential, 48 church) to meet City code.  It is not anticipated that parking from the proposed project will impact the on-street parking capacity given the orientation of the residential project away from Floral Drive and the ability for residential spill-over parking (if required) to utilize the church lot as temporary overflow.

The project is projected to generate 19 trips during the AM peak hour and 26 trips during the PM Peak hour.  Compared to the current R-1 zoning, the volumes increase by 8 trips during AM peak and by 11 trips during PM peak.  It is important to note that prior to the Trinity School closure, trips to ahd from this location were significantly higher during the peak hour relative to the proposed single-family residential use.  The traffic study found that current traffic conditions near the project are functioning at acceptable service levels, although Beverly/Floral is approaching capacity (81.3%) during the AM peak only.  With the addition of trips from the proposed project, the Beverly/Floral capacity increases to 82.0% during AM peak. All other intersections remain unchanged in terms of level of service with the proposed project.

Infill development involves construction in close proximity to existing residents and businesses. We are familiar with building in close quarters and do our best to minimize impacts. Environmental review of the potential noise impacts during construction identified no significant impacts for ground-borne vibration/noise. Temporary noise impacts during construction are to be mitigated by use of a construction management plan, construction of a 6’ high block wall at the perimeter, and a prohibition on pile driving. Design features include the following measures: working only within approved construction hours; building construction to provide 45dBA sound attenuation for new residents, and use of specified windows, sealing techniques, and mechanical ventilation where required.

Air Quality & Vehicle Miles Traveled
Street Lighting & Overhead Utilities
Stormwater & Wet Utilities

Environmental analysis identified sensitive receptors near the project as adjacent residences and portions of Dexter Middle School within 25 meters of the project site boundary. To ensure mitigation of potential impacts, the project must comply with SCAQMD rules requiring construction best practices to mitigate airborne dust, erosion, exhaust, and VOC’s.  Regarding emission of greenhouse gasses (GHG), the project is required to comply with the City of Whittier’s Air Quality Element, which implements many of the same standards in the SCAQMD rules.  There are no significant long-term impacts related to GHG.

 

The project is located across from the southern terminus of Westmont Drive.  A single outdated streetlight is located at the intersection.  As part of the project improvements, the overhead streetlight wiring will be placed underground, and three new, modern LED streetlights will be installed along the Floral Drive frontage.  The new lights will provide enhanced illumination at the intersection and greatly improve nighttime safety of pedestrians and vehicles traveling on Floral Drive.  Overhead telecom facilities along Floral Drive will also be placed underground during construction.  Overhead electric facilities at the southwest corner of the project near Orange Avenue will be reconfigured to avoid conflicts with new construction.

Urban runoff from the project will be detained on site and filtered prior to discharge into the public storm drain system to comply with the Regional Water Board’s MS4 stormwater permit.  Stormwater flows will outfall into Canobie Avenue at Dexter Middle School and will be maintained at historic discharge rates.  Sewer capacity has been evaluated by the City and will be conveyed through a private sanitary sewer system to Floral Drive.  Upgrades downstream in Palm Avenue are scheduled for 2023 as part of the City’s capital improvement program and will provide capacity to adequately handle sewer flow from the project.  Whittier Public Works will supply domestic and fire water to the project and capacity has been determined to be adequate.

 

Revitalizing North Whittier

Preserving Trinity Lutheran’s Rich History

Designed to Align with City Policies

Neighborhood Impacts & Improvements

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