On the council agenda this week is a proposal to amend the Burbank Municipal Code to allow this upcoming airport project to fall under a process of development review that will not be limited to the normal one-year time period for project commencement. Normally these multi-year projects fall under the old Planned Development process (PD), like what the studios work under.
Because there is no rezoning needed in the existing “Airport” zone, where the new terminal will be located, the normal PD process would not apply, although the CA is vague on exactly why this is so. (Apparently the PD process in Burbank only applies to projects that require a total rezoning.) Thus staff is seeking an alternative method of applying a development review methodology that will fit this (apparently now) long-term airport project.
This Ordinance would allow the Airport to have an alternative development review process for construction of the 14 gate replacement terminal and ancillary buildings, which would be part of the development agreement ultimately presented to Council and the voters for consideration. The specific development review process itself is not part of this Ordinance; this Ordinance merely provides that an alternative process could be allowed in a development agreement but only when approved by Council. The development review process, if this Ordinance is approved, will be incorporated into the Airport’s Development Agreement.
Because it’s all going to a public vote anyway (supposedly), we don’t see anything particularly sinister or even sneaky about this new change in the rules, although the above language is a bit confusing. Like what does, “which would be part of the development agreement ultimately presented…” really mean? Does this mean the process or the results? Probably the latter.
Speaking of the former, any real sneakiness could come from what the council finally decides is the specific method of review, if only because it will all be worked out with the Authority in the end, obviously.
It could be strict or it could not be. Such as, are they going to come up with the process only after the project has been submitted, so that the process fit the needs of the project’s designers? Isn’t it supposed to be vice versa?
This week will authorize the council’s right to invoke an alternative review process in general. Future weeks will work out what that process is going to be. So what is it, and exactly what control will the City of Burbank have over the conditions of the project anyway? Didn’t they already deal most of that power away?
Are there actual standards to apply? Will they be developed? If so, when? Or is it just that anything goes?
The Planning Board heard this item earlier and passed it along to the council. This interesting tidbit came up during their deliberations:
No rush, obviously. So why then rush this to the voters in November?
Is this date no longer part of any realistic plan? We always found it to be terrifically manipulative, yes, because these airport boosters obviously want to cherry-pick the electorate in order to improve their chance of victory.
The federal election in November would best give them the kind of voters they want: those younger, more transient, more prone to flash and sizzle, and less inclined to be involved with local issues, especially the kind that are classically protectionist.