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The La Plaza Development is located between Highway 101 and the City’s primary corridor: El Camino Real. All of the properties are zoned Downtown Commercial and lie within the Downtown Revitalization Plan. The existing site includes a vacant building, small commercial structures, and a telecommunications tower. Only the telecommunications tower will remain.



The proposed La Plaza development is a homage to Atascadero history and its founding years. The original La Plaza, which was also known as the Mercantile, was built in 1917 and then fell victim to a fire in 1934. The development team is heavily inspired by the founding days of Atascadero, which has spurred the desire to reference certain attributes of these first buildings of Atascadero. The architectural style of the proposed La Plaza development is in the same Palladian style as the City Hall building, The Printery building, and the former La Plaza building. E.G. Lewis, Atascadero’s founder, envisioned all the main and dominant buildings within the Atascadero Estates to be built in this style and it is the goal of the La Plaza development team to continue in that vision. The project, like the original La Plaza, will consist of commercial/retail space and residential uses. It will have two buildings with a combined total of 18,000SF of commercial/retail space and 42 residential units built to condominium specifications. There will be 5 different floor plans for the residential units and the retail/commercial space will be divided on an as needed basis. All commercial/retail space will be equipped with venting, electrical, and plumbing that any restaurant would need.

The zoning for this project is Downtown Commercial and typically would only allow for 36 residential units, but The City of Atascadero granted the project a 15% bonus for architectural excellence. This allows the project to move forward with 42 units. Because this project is in a “Downtown Commercial Zone” where there is no requirement for parking for the commercial space. However, one space is required per residential unit so our requirement for parking is 42, 27 of which will be private garages. The proposed project recognizes the city and local businesses need for more parking and will be providing a total of 89 parking spaces on site, 4 of which will be designated for electric car charging stations.

A component of the Project will further the goals of the Downtown Revitalization Plan by facilitating the development of a public plaza in the location of Atascadero Mall, directly across from Sunken Gardens Park connecting the park and downtown to the pedestrian connection underneath the US 101. The plaza space will remain a publicly owned space.

Image of a portion of the Downtown Revitalization Plan Vision. Note the proposed
plaza and configuration of Multi-Story Mixed Use buildings with parking adjacent
to Hwy 101 in very similar layout to the La Plaza project.



·Building A: One three-story building with approximately 14,000 square feet of commercial space on the first floor and 38 air space residential condominium units on the 2nd and 3rd floors

·Building B: One three story building with 3,749 square feet (sf) of commercial uses on the first floor and two residential units on each of the 2nd and 3rd floors.

·Public improvements that include a pedestrian plaza and a driveway access on Atascadero Mall



On November 21, 2017, the Planning Commission reviewed the La Plaza Mixed-Use project and recommended approval of the development project and the related road abandonment, road closure and plaza project to the City Council. Following review by the Commission, the applicant amended the project to replace proposed office space with residential units on the upper floors of Building A, thereby triggering additional review by the Planning Commission. The Planning Commission reviewed the project a second time on March 6, 2018 and recommended the project approval to the City Council. On April 10, 2018 the City Council approved the project with amendments.


Staff Reports

CEQA Mitigation Measures

Design Review Committee – 7/12/2017

Planning Commission – 11/21/2018 & 3/6/2018

City Council – 3/12/2019

Category: Planning Division

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