The Del Rey Fuel, LLC proposal was one of three heard by the Marina del Rey Design Control Board at its meeting on Thursday, August 28th, at the Burton Chace Park Community Building in Marina del Rey.
The project (involving Marina del Rey Parcel 1, at the east terminus of Bora Bora Way,) was tabled until the end of the meeting to allow applicant/lessee Greg Schem time to discuss with an associate revisions to the proposal after the Design Control Board said it would not approve the project as proposed.
The project was then approved as proposed with recommendations for the applicant to reconsider security lighting and eliminate motion detector lighting, and to work with Design Control Board vice chair Peter Phinney, an architect, on a cost-effective design for the canopies.
As a condition of conceptual approval, the Design Control Board had previously requested that the applicant explore the use of translucent materials in the dock design. After consideration, their use was considered infeasible due to the dock’s structure.
In this project, the applicant has proposed a floating concrete dock system, as opposed to a floating modular system, a design considered necessary, as there is a need to enclose the large amount of piping necessary for the fuel delivery, electrical, plumbing, oil change and fire suppression systems.
Because of this large amount of piping and structural elements contained under the dock, there is no room for light to penetrate the decking.
The project was approved with recommendations for the applicant to reconsider including a wave-like articulation of a suspended canopy, which had been proposed originally in May 2007 but scrapped after Schem was told by the California Coastal Commission that the 19-foot proposed height of the waterside building had to be reduced to 15 feet above the water.
The proposed project was originally presented in May 2007, and the proposed design included an angular “butterfly” roof 19 feet high, with a wave-like articulation of suspended canopies that would also provide shaded seating for patrons.
This resulted in the removal of the original wave canopy design element, replacing it with a horizontal trellis, as well as adjusting the canopy trellis on the landside building to match the waterside design.
Cloke and Phinney asked Schem to reconsider using the original design, with Phinney stating he was disappointed at the loss of the undulating canopies, and that “it is an iconic building and the undulating wave canopy design codifies the playful essence of the Marina.”
Cloke said she too “mourns the loss of the playful canopies, as this is a recreational destination point for the public.”
Schem said the costs of the project had risen by 80 percent since first proposed and if the project were delayed longer, he could not guarantee he would be financially able to complete it.
This type of service to boaters in the Marina is crucial and would be a huge loss if not approved now because it could take years to get it going again, said Schem.
Santos Kreimann, acting director of Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors, said he could confirm Schem’s comments about the significant cost increases and that these costs had not been contemplated when the project was submitted.
Kreimann said a county economic consultant had been asked to verify the increases, and that the county would work with Schem to keep gas prices at a certain level, since the county derives revenue from the lessee from gas sales.
The following description of the proposed project is from county documentation.
The proposed scope of work consists of the removal of all existing docks and existing landside improvements, except for the underground fuel storage tanks and some landscaping.
The development would include new docks, a new fuel delivery system, pump-out stations, bait pens, a catch weigh station, a waterside retail kiosk, a water-taxi landing, landside marine commercial real estate, new hardscape (non-plant elements) and landscape.
There are currently no boat slips at the site and boats side-tie to the existing docks.
The waterside portion of the proposed project would entail the complete replacement of all docks with new docks made of concrete capable of mooring 1,087 lineal feet of boats, ranging from small dinghies to yachts 200 feet in length.
Also planned are five slips for boats from 125 to 200 feet, with the primary design consideration focused on maintaining the project’s inherent flexibility to accommodate a wide range of boats.
The existing single-story 450-square foot office structure built on piles over the water and the existing 200-square foot sales office currently located on the main fuel dock would be removed, and a new 1,900-square foot retail and sales kiosk would be located on the outer dock to replace these.
The proposed kiosk would act as the single point of customer contact for fuel and bait sales and to provide boater convenience items, food for off-site consumption and other items similar to a small convenience store.
The new waterside structure would be constructed over engineered floating dock assemblies with electricity and water provided from shore, and the building would be constructed of wood with wood siding.
Fuel pumps would be similar in design to ordinary automotive station equipment, but with internal hose reels.
New state-of-the art speed pumps and fire suppression systems would provide efficient and safe fueling to all vessels.
The new pumps would be capable of delivering up to 60 gallons per minute for four different fuel types, with an automatic pay system for large-volume customers, housing of related emergency and safety equipment as required by applicable laws, and a state-of-the-art fuel-spill containment system with on-site supervisory staff present at all times the fuel dock is open for business.
Security gates would separate public traffic areas from sensitive fueling areas and provide security to slip tenants, and the public water taxi would be provided a mooring area for the drop-off and pickup of passengers at the fuel dock, and public shopping at the kiosk would be encouraged.
The landside development would be completely redeveloped, and the existing single-story 947-square-foot building would be replaced with a new 1,400-square-foot building containing public restrooms and boater showers, dry storage for transient boater use, marine commercial space that might include over-the-counter food service, an inventory storage area and housing for related emergency and safety equipment.
Existing underground fuel storage tanks (replaced in 1996) would be retained, and tanks and related piping would be constantly monitored by an electronic system capable of detecting potential malfunctions, with all pumps and fuel delivery hoses automatically shutting off and an alarm sounding in the event of a problem at the fuel dock.
The design of the landside building is planned to be the same as the waterside building, and access to the docks would be provided by four gangways, one along the Basin A boundary compliant with ADA (Americans With Disabilities Act) requirements, as well as three gangways along the main channel boundary.
The area surrounding the building would provide for a common gathering area, which could be used for fishing tournaments, outdoor dining or viewing fuel dock operations and related boating activity.
New hardscape matching the existing waterfront promenade recently completed at the adjacent parcel would be added across this property, with identical paving designs, railings, lighting, seating, and landscaping utilized to assure conformity with the existing promenade.
Also planned are two 20-by-ten-foot over-the-water view platforms at the top of each main channel gangway, totaling approximately 400 square feet.
Additionally, 13 on-site surface parking spaces (an increase of eight from the existing five spaces) would be provided, with parking primarily for employees and slip tenants.