On January 4, 1995, the Council established policies for the temporary closure of public streets due to criminal activity pursuant to California Vehicle Code Section 21101.4 (Council File 93-1878). This was as a result of a 1993 City Council approved Nuisance Alley Conversion Pilot Project (expired) to provide funds to gate and permanently close alleys that have a history of attracting illegal dumping, criminal gang activity, drug dealing, and prostitution.
A closure refers to the installation of barriers, gates, or other closure devices that limit the physical access to the right-of-way that is being withdrawn. The revocable Permit is ONLY issued after an adopted City Council resolution allowing the closure. A Revocable Permit should be issued only after Council Approval and prior to the Applicant applying for an A or B Permit. The Applicant agrees to remove the gates/fences upon termination of the allowed closure period at no cost to the City. Once the Applicant is granted a Revocable Permit, they will be required to obtain an A or B Permit for the construction/installation of the gates and BCA Inspectors must sign off on the construction of the gate(s).
The following is an overview of the entire Nuisance street/alley closures process:
- Nuisance street/alley closures must be requested through a Council Office by a property owner abutting the street or alley.
- If the Council Office agrees, the Council Office would introduce a motion to full City Council instructing the City Engineer to report with recommendations on the feasibility of the temporary closure for reasons of public safety and to solicit input from the adjacent property owners.
- If the motion is adopted by City Council, BOE would officially begin work on the report with recommendations.
- The report with the recommendations is prepared by the Bureau of Engineering, Land Development Group, reviewed by the City Attorney for legality, and submitted back to City Council for approval or denial. This report includes:
- A petition that is circulated to residents who abut the subject street/alley (could extend further than properties that abut) as well as Council Offices, HOAs, or other stakeholders.
- Reference to CA Vehicle Code Section 21101.4
- Verification from the Police Department stating what conditions listed in the CA Vehicle Code are in violation
- Fiscal impacts of processing the application
- Conditions of approval
- If approved, Applicants would apply for a Revocable Permit and a construction A or B Permit from the Bureau of Engineering within six months of City Council approval.
REVOCABLE PERMIT REQUIREMENTS
- Appropriate fees have been paid (Tier 1 or Tier 2)
- Adopted Council Report prepared by BOE Land Development Staff making appropriate recommendations as to the feasibility of the closure
- A sketch indicating the areas to be temporarily closed
- Street closure approval shall be obtained from one or more of the following departments:
- Fire Department
- BOS Wastewater Collection Systems Division
- Cultural Affairs, if gate design requires this
- Proof of satisfactory insurance coverage
- A revised Waiver of Damages signed by the responsible person accountable for the project application
- Conditions listed in the City Engineer’s Report should be included as conditions of the permit
MONITORING AND EXTENDING THE PERMIT
The California Vehicle Code Section 21101.4 allows for the extension of the permit for up to eight (8) consecutive 18-month periods (as of March 1, 2018). Per Council File 93-1878-S2, the following are the procedures for monitoring and enforcing the temporary closures of public streets, alleys, walks, and stairways due to criminal activity.
Staff should confirm the following have been received/completed prior to extending the expiration date of each permit.
- Adopted City Council resolution extending the closure
- Collection of the fee prescribed in the City Council approved City Engineer’s Report.