Claremont Insider: Every Home a Castle

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Every Home a Castle

Claremont's planners have been working for some time now on the problem of "mansionization" - the tearing down and replacement of old homes with newer, much larger ones that are out-of-scale with the surrounding neighborhood.

In response to the problem, the City's Planning Department has come up with some proposed changes to the City Municipal Code designed to rein in the aspirations of any potential Ludwig II yearning to erect Schloss Neuschwanstein on a 12,000 square foot Claremont Village parcel.

Claremont's Planning Commission will take up the matter on June 16 in the City Council chambers at 7pm. The City's website gives all the details:


The Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on proposed changes to the Claremont Zoning Code, Title 16 of the Claremont Municipal Code. Proposed changes will affect the development potential of residential properties, the City's architectural review process and review criteria, and standards and requirements for demolitions, removals and substantial remodels of existing buildings and structures. The proposed changes include the following:

  • Establishment of maximum lot sizes for most single-family residential districts
  • Reduction of the potential building envelopes for single-family homes
  • Reduction of the potential floor area of second stories in single-family homes
  • Establishment of a new requirement for 3-D simulations for new and expanded single-family homes if the proposed square footage approaches the maximum square footage permitted on the property
  • Revision of the City's architectural review process and review criteria
  • Establishment of new requirements for demolitions and removals of existing buildings and structures, and penalties for demolitions without permits
  • Establishment of a threshold for determining when substantial changes/additions to existing buildings and structures become subject to current development standards and fees otherwise required of new home construction

The public is invited to make comment on the proposed code changes at the public hearing.

What: Planning Commission Public Hearing
When: June 16, 2009 at 7:00 p.m.
Where: Council Chamber, 225 W. Second Street

At the conclusion of the Public Hearing, the Planning Commission will make a formal recommendation on proposed changes to the City Council. The City Council is the final decision-making body on code changes and is expected to hold a public hearing on the proposed changes in July 2009.

Drafts of the proposed code changes are available for review at City Hall, 207 Harvard Avenue; the Claremont Public Library, 208 Harvard Avenue; and on the City of Claremont website, Please submit any written comments to Principal Planner Belle Newman, P.O. Box 880, Claremont, CA 91711 or at

For more information, contact Principal Planner Belle Newman at (909) 399-5470.