Minutes of March 1, 2012 Commission Meeting
1. Call to Order. The meeting was called to order by Chair Wasserman at the Ferry Building, Port of San Francisco Board Room, Second Floor, San Francisco, CA 94111 at 1:08 p.m.
2. Roll Call. Present were: Chair Wasserman and Vice Chair Halsted, Commissioners Addiego, Apodaca, Bates, Chan (represented by Alternate Gilmore), Chiu, Cortese, Fossum (represented by Alternate Kato), Gibbs, McGrath, Nelson (represented by Alternate Ranchod), Pine, Randolph, Sartipi (represented by Alternate Richards), Sears, Spering (represented by Alternate Vasquez), Vierra, Wagenknecht and Ziegler. Legislative member William C. Taylor was also present.
Chair Wasserman announced that a quorum was present.
Not present were: Sonoma County (Brown), Department of Finance (Finn), Contra Costa County (Gioia), Governor’s Appointee’s (Jordan Hallinan and Moy), U.S. Army Corps., of Engineers (Hicks) and Association of Bay Area Governments – North Bay Cities (Vacant).
3. Public Comment Period. Chair Wasserman called for public comment on subjects that were not on the agenda. Comments would be restricted to three minutes per speaker.
There were three speakers who addressed the Commission.
Ms. Corinne Woods addressed the Commission: I am a Port tenant, BCDC permit holder and long-time Port watcher.
Please pass 3-11 and let us move forward with the cruise terminal. It’s very important. Thank you.
Ms. Catherine Hooper spoke: I have worked in and around the Port of San Francisco for the better part of 15 years, primarily in the passenger cruise industry.
And most recently I am the Executive Director of San Francisco’s annual Fleet Week, a self-supporting event.
I am here wearing both hats. We have one of the most beautiful natural harbors in the world. This passenger terminal does a great job with what we have.
This terminal is long overdue.
Passenger terminals are also used for other things other than just passenger ships. One of them is bringing in U.S. naval vessels and visiting active, naval war vessels to our port.
We just don’t have an appropriate facility when Pier 35 is busy with cruise ships or if Pier 27 isn’t upgraded.
Fleet Week brings in money for the Port of San Francisco and to the City itself and is a glorious event.
We need Pier 27 and I vote yes for it now.
Mr. Bill Robberson addressed the Commission: I am here on behalf of the San Francisco Board Sailing Association.
We think it’s important to keep dialogue going on access for board sailors and kayakers.
The Coast Guard, National Parks Service and the City of San Francisco have been working very closely with us on the access issue with regards to mitigation in 2013 when our constituents will not be able to wind surf at Crissy Field because of the expected congestion.
We strongly encourage having in writing when you go for your vote on the larger permit process in the future that the Event Authority/City will mitigate our lack of access at Crissy Field in 2013 with improved launch sites at Treasure Island.
4. Approval of Minutes of the February 2, 2012 Meeting. Chair Wasserman entertained a motion and a second to adopt the minutes of February 2, 2012 meeting.
MOTION: Commissioner Wagenknecht moved for approval, seconded by Commissioner Vasquez. The motion passed by a voice vote with Chair Wasserman and Commissioner Ranchod abstaining.
Chair Wasserman moved to Agenda Item 9 because of time constraints of certain Commissioners.
5. Report of the Chair. Chair Wasserman reported on the following: As part of my first meeting I though it appropriate to make a few brief remarks.
I am honored to walk in the footsteps of three women who led a courageous fight to save our Bay, Kay Kerr, Sylvia McLaughlin and Esther Gulick. And I am also honored to follow in Sean Randolph’s footsteps – he has led this commission very well for the past seven years in carrying out our balanced mission of working to conserve and to develop the Bay.
I had some experience with the Commission when I was a Port of Oakland Commissioner in the late 1980’s – where I first met Commissioner McGrath – and we were dealing with major dredging disposal issues. As most of you know, my more recent experience comes from working with business interests and public agencies and environmental groups in helping to shape the recently adopted Bay Plan Amendment addressing rising sea levels. My perspective from that experience is that the Commission and the BCDC staff were open and committed to a fair and productive resolution of some very different views. I think it was a great example of how to deal with tough policy issues by a public body.
I very much look forward to working with all of you in implementing that amendment and devising adaptation strategies to the real issue of rising sea level. I also look forward to working with the other major regional agencies to better coordinate our efforts to protect, develop and enhance the entire San Francisco Bay Region.
I very much believe in the concept of Regional Stewardship - the commitment to the long term well being of places like our Bay Area – coordinated action by integrators who cross boundaries of jurisdiction, sector and constituencies to address complex regional issues of sustainability, environmental quality and economic development.
I know a good number of you – I will get to know all of you. And I look forward to working with you to create an ever better Bay Conservation and Development Commission and an ever better Bay.
There is a draft resolution in your packet for Sean Randolph, honoring him for his long and productive service as BCDC Chair. I would appreciate a motion, second and affirmative vote to adopt the resolution.
MOTION: Commissioner Bates moved this item, seconded by Commissioner Richards. A voice vote was taken to approve the Resolution of Appreciation for Commissioner Randolph. The motion passed with no abstentions or opposition.
a. Today’s Meeting. You should have in your packet a revised final Agenda for today’s meeting. Because of the very recent changes to the America’s Cup races, we will put over Item 8, the Special Area Plan amendment for the America’s Cup, to a later meeting to allow staff to prepare a revised staff recommendation. We’re also going to put Item 10, the consideration of the Strategic Plan Status report, over to the April 5th meeting.
b. Commissioner Appointments. Supervisor Dave Pine has been reappointed by San Mateo County to serve as the County’s representative on BCDC. Solano County has reappointed Supervisor Jim Spering to represent the County on BCDC and Supervisor John Vasquez to serve as the County’s alternate.
Our staff has provided draft resolutions of appreciation in your packet to honor outgoing Commissioners Eric Carruthers and Larry Goldzband. I would welcome a motion, second and affirmative vote to adopt the resolutions.
MOTION: Commissioner McGrath moved this item, seconded by Vice Chair Halsted. A voice vote was taken to approve the Resolutions of Appreciation for Commissioners Carruthers and Goldzband. The motion passed with no abstentions or opposition.
c. Executive Director Position. As you know, Sean Randolph had been working with BCDC’s Personnel staff to lay out a proposed process and schedule for selecting a permanent Executive Director. We expect to mail out to you this month a draft approach, which we can discuss at an upcoming meeting.
d. Next BCDC Meeting. We will hold our next meeting March 15th. At that meeting, which will be held at the Metro Center, we will take up the following matters:
(1) We will hold a briefing on the changes to the America’s Cup.
(2) We will hold a public hearing and vote on a permit for the proposed Cruise Ship Terminal at Pier 27 on the San Francisco Waterfront.
e. Ex-Parte Communications. That completes my report. In case you have inadvertently forgotten to provide our staff with a report on any written or oral ex-parte communications, I invite Commissioners who have engaged in any such communications to report on them at this point.
Commissioner Chiu stated: I’ve had dozens of conversation on Item 9 that we just discussed.
Commissioner Kato commented: I’ve had conversations with the Port as well as various public, private individuals in regards to Item 9.
Commissioner Halsted reported: Ditto.
6. Report of the Executive Director. Executive Director Goldbeck reported:
a. Chairs. On behalf of the staff, I would like to salute outgoing Chair Sean Randolph for his meritorious service as Chair. We are pleased that you are still serving as a Commissioner. I would further like to welcome Chair Wasserman. We have already had several productive meetings and I find him to be a quick study. We look forward to working with you.
b. Personnel. Kevin Chung is a new planning intern on BCDC’s staff. He has an undergraduate degree from Cornell University in the College of Architecture, Art and Planning. Kevin worked as an intern at San Francisco International Airport and for Leigh Fisher Management Consultants. He will be providing assistance on the Adapting to Rising Tides Project.
c. Assembly Bill AB 57. This bill was introduced by Assembly Member Beal that would amend the membership on the Metropolitan Transportation Commission to include two additional members, one each from the City of Oakland and the City of San Jose.
We have heard that the bill likely will be amended to provide that the BCDC representative to MTC be a San Francisco resident. As soon as any language is introduced that would affect BCDC, staff will prepare a staff report on the proposed legislation for Commission consideration.
7. Consideration of Administrative Matters. Executive Director Goldbeck stated that a listing of the administrative matters our staff is prepared to act upon was sent to Commissioners on February 24th. Brad McCrea is available to respond to any questions you may have about the matter on the listing.
8. Vote on Bay Plan Amendment No. 4-11 to the San Francisco Waterfront Special Area Plan regarding the Open Water Basin Policies and Plan Implementation Requirements to Accommodate the 34th America’s Cup Events- POSTPONED. Chair Wasserman announced that Item 8, proposed amendments to the San Francisco Waterfront Special Area Plan, had been put over to the April 5th meeting.
9. Vote on Bay Plan Amendment No. 3-11 to the San Francisco Waterfront Special Area Plan regarding the Public Plazas and Open Water Basin Policies and Plan Implementation Requirements to accommodate the 34th America’s Cup Events. Ms. Lindy Lowe made the following presentation: Item 9 is a vote on the proposed Bay Plan amendment 3-11 requested by the Port of San Francisco to amend the San Francisco Waterfront Special Area Plan to locate the City of San Francisco’s primary cruise terminal at Piers 27 and allow the retention of the Pier 23 Shed. We held a public hearing on this amendment at our February 2nd meeting 2012.
There have been changes to the America’s Cup Project and they have affected the schedule that we’ve shown you at the last two meetings. These changes include, postponing the possible vote on the America’s Cup Amendment concerning the use of the open water basins to April 5th, the public hearing for the Cruise Ship Terminal Project which was moved from today to March 15th, the addition of a briefing to update the Commission regarding the status of the America’s Cup Project on March 15th and the elimination of the permit for Piers 30/32 which is no longer necessary due to changes to the development agreement between the City and the America’s Cup Event Authority.
The staff report included a recommendation on Bay Plan Amendment No. 3-11 for the Port of San Francisco’s cruise ship terminal and Bay Plan Amendment 4-11 for the Port of San Francisco and the America’s Cup Event Authority amendment concerning the open water basins for the America’s Cup Event.
On February 27, 2012 the development agreement between the Event Authority and the City and County of San Francisco changed.
These changes included the elimination of one component of the Amendment 4-11, the use of the Brannan Street Wharf Open Water Basin for the berthing and mooring of vessels associated with the America’s Cup Event.
Based on these changes, both the Event Authority and the City and the Port have asked us to delay and postpone the amendment until April 5th.
The City and Port did not want to delay the cruise ship terminal amendment and wanted us to move forward with the amendment today on 3-11 for the cruise ship terminal.
Staff agreed to move forward with the cruise ship terminal amedment, as the analysis in the staff report was conducted separately for both amendments. I will now move into the cruise ship terminal amendment.
The Special Area Plan was amended 10 years ago to change BCDC’s policies regarding fill removal and permitted uses on piers providing the opportunity to comprehensively plan a section of the waterfront from China Basin to Pier 35.
There were various key overall public benefits adopted in the 2000 Special Area Plan.
The Plan has been amended once since the comprehensive amendment in 2000 and that was for the Exploratorium Project.
During the Exploratorium amendment an approach was established regarding amendments to the Special Area Plan. This approach, generally, is that the closer the public benefit or mitigation is to the impact, which was at Piers 15 and 17 for the Exploratorium project, the less fill would have to be removed and the further away the mitigation or public benefit from the site of the impact, the more fill you would have to remove. The sooner the fill is removed, the less fill would have to be removed and the longer it takes to remove the fill, the more fill would have to removed.
Based on concerns raised during the Exploratorium project the Port and BCDC established an interview process for 30 stakeholders along the San Francisco Waterfront representing a broad range of organizations.
The majority of interviews were conducted one-on-one and they were pretty intensive.
It became apparent during these interviews that it would be preferable for BCDC and the Port of San Francisco to assume a comprehensive view to planning the waterfront.
It was expressed by many that it was important to avoid a piecemeal approach to the waterfront and to avoid trade-offs between regions where some of the sub-areas receive a lot more of the public benefits while others do not receive quite as many.
Many issues raised by the Exploratorium Project also pertained to the Cruise Ship Terminal Project, including the need to provide new public benefits to offset those being impacted by the proposed cruise ship terminal.
Currently the Special Area Plan requires the Northeast Wharf Plaza Pier perimeter public access along Pier 27 and at the Pier end tip, the removal of a portion of Pier 23 and an open water basin between Piers 19 and 27.
The Cruise Ship Terminal at Pier 27 and the retention of the shed at Pier 23 will impact these required improvements in several ways, including the closure of public access approximately half of the year along the Pier 27 apron, the eastern end, or tip, of Pier 27, the elimination of the open water basin between Piers 19 and 27 and the reduction of views that would be provided if a portion of Pier 23 were removed. In spite of these impacts, we believe that the northeast Wharf Plaza will continue to serve as a wonderful public open space and that the presence of a cruise ship terminal will add interest to the use of the plaza.
Five findings were developed for the Cruise Ship Terminal Amendment regarding pier condition, public benefits, historic resources, the use of Pier 27 for a cruise ship terminal and the need for a replacement open water basin to be located between China Basin and Pier 35.
The open water basins that will remain are Brannan Street Wharf, Rincon Point Basin and Broadway Basin. The Northeast Wharf Open Water Basin will be deleted.
There are various public benefits and replacement public access benefits that will occur concomitantly with the completion of the Cruise Ship Terminal Project as well as other benefits to occur within five to ten years of completion of the project.
In order to ensure the integrity of the public benefits provided for in this plan to replace the Northeast Wharf Open Water Basin the Port must identify and BCDC must approve in a subsequent amendment to this plan, a new location for the fourth open water basin within the northeastern waterfront by December 31, 2015.
We have tied a requirement to the project that stipulates that if replacement mitigation is not successful then they will be required to find another open water basin that BCDC must approve.
Another major issue brought up by stakeholders the management of historic resources on the Port’s lands. This concern, along with the role that Pier 31 may play in the open water basin between Piers 29 and 33 resulted in a determination that there was a need for a planning process around managing and maintaining the Port’s historic resources.
The final part of the public benefits package is the Fisherman’s Wharf Open Water Basin and Public Plaza process. With anticipated improvements associated with this planning process and other improvements that are already underway, the Port may initiate an amendment to request that the Commission remove the 50 percent rule in the Fisherman’s Wharf sub-area.
The staff recommends that the Commission adopt Resolution No. 2012-01 that would amend the San Francisco Waterfront Special Area Plan to allow the relocation of the City and County of San Francisco’s primary cruise ship terminal to Pier 27, the possible retention of the Pier 23 Shed, the establishment of a public process to develop a design, implementation and financing plan for a public plaza and open water basin in the Fisherman’s Wharf area around Pier 43, the design, implementation and financing plan for an open water basin in the areas between Pier 35 and China Basin, a public process for developing an approach to historic resources on Port lands that are identified as unsafe for the public, the acceleration of the development of the Northeast Wharf Plaza, the acceleration of public access at Piers 19, 19½, 23, 29 and 29½ and an open space at the end of Piers 27 and 29.
The amendment could provide the waterfront maritime use that will increase the activity and interest in the waterfront and balances that use with the provision of Bay views, public access, water-oriented recreation access opportunities, public plazas and the protection and rehabilitation of historic resources.
For all these reasons, staff recommends that the Commission adopt the resolution for Bay Plan Amendment 3-11, the James R. Herman Cruise Ship Terminal Amendment.
Commissioner McGrath commented: I understand that there is a planning process for replacing the open water basin and I think you said that since structurally the location of 30/32 was not suitable it may well be that the open water basin ends up in that area. But the requirement is to find a replacement area somewhere between China Basin and Pier 35 which includes that. Is that correct?
Ms. Lowe responded: That’s correct. BCDC staff identified the area between 29 and 33 because it was close to the impact that was occurring, but the planning process may result in the open water basin being located at another location.
Commissioner Chiu commented: I am a strong supporter of the cruise ship terminal.
A question raised by some of my constituents is the timing of why we need to approve Bay Plan Amendment 3-11 but not necessarily since we can’t move forward with 4-11 but they were presented together, why do we need to move forward at this time.
And I had asked the Port to provide some information around schedules and budgets and had received some of this but I was wondering if I could ask for a little clarification on that at this time.
Ms. Lowe answered: We at BCDC have always analyzed the projects separately because we see that the impacts are vastly different.
The America’s Cup has a very discreet, temporary impact on what was once four and is now three open water basins. The public benefits package was developed to respond specifically to those impacts, separate from the cruise ship terminal project.
On the Cruise Ship Terminal Project, we have also packaged the public benefits and the project itself in a way that is separate from the America’s Cup.
Mr. Brad Benson of the Port spoke: I am the Special Projects Manager with the Port of San Francisco.
We’re clear that 30/32 is not going to be a major construction site for America’s Cup purposes but Piers 27 and 29 are still going to be used as the America’s Cup Village.
Commissioner Chiu added: If I could get some more specifics around what those schedules might be.
Mr. Victor Perry from Turner Construction addressed the Commission: Our schedule has always contemplated one year from start to finish. We’ve come up with a plan to deliver by March 1, 2013 using lean and scheduling techniques and the project is currently as tightly scheduled as you can get.
Commissioner Vasquez asked: Is it a design/build where you have the general concept and then you go ahead and move forward –
Mr. Perry responded: The only element that’s a design/build is the exterior wall which is the framing and the glazing and the metal panels. The rest of the project is a fully designed and engineered project.
Mr. Edgar Lopez with the Department of Public Works addressed the Commission: We’ve already allocated $200,000 to accelerate the job in order to meet the March 1, 2013 completion date.
The Port doesn’t have the money to accelerate the job any further than we already have. Any further delays are going to get us to the point where we can’t deliver.
Commissioner Chiu asked: So in other words if we were to delay to the next meeting do you have a sense of what that dollar figure would be?
Mr. Lopez answered: It’ll raise the cost upwards of one-half of a million dollars and beyond that and money won’t even do us any good because we just can’t get it done on time.
MOTION: Commissioner Chiu moved approval, seconded by Commissioner Wagenknecht. A roll call vote was taken.
VOTE: The motion carried with a roll call vote of 19-0-0 with Commissioner Addiego, Apodaca, Bates, Gilmore, Chiu, Cortese, Kato, McGrath, Ranchod, Pine, Randolph, Richards, Sears, Vasquez, Vierra, Wagenknecht, Ziegler, Vice-Chair Halsted and Chair Wasserman voting “YES”, no “NO” votes and no abstentions.
10. Consideration of Strategic Plan Status Report. Chairman Wasserman announced Item 10 has been postponed until the meeting of April 5, 2012.
11. New Business. No new business was discussed.
12. Old Business. No old business was discussed.
13. Adjournment. Upon motion by Vice Chair Halsted seconded by Commissioner Ranchod the meeting adjourned at 2:02 p.m.
Acting Executive Director
Approved, with no corrections, at the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission Meeting of March 15, 2012
R. Zachary Wasserman, Chair