Art studio plan gets commission
by Cheryl Gilman
Michael Braden, a professional artist and sculptor, as well as
a trained architect, presented design plans for his artist and
sculpture studio and residence at 914 Bryant Place at a concept
review at the Planning Commission meeting in City Chambers Wednesday
He said, "Both my wife and I will live and work in the proposed
project. The sculpture and art studio are a private workshop
area only with no retail sales. It will be gated with occasional
studio visits by appointment only to major collectors and museums."
Braden's work is from small to monumental. A steel-frame building
will house an internal 10-ton crane and loading dock. The studios
will be insulated against noise. Braden said, "I built a
similar structure in a comparable derelict area in Seattle. It
became the seed that other artists imitated and subsequently
improved the site."
The sculptor does both stone work and welding, both activities
that comply with the requirements
for the light industrial zoned area at Bryant street.
Braden said, "The buildings will be constructed of corrugated
metal and stucco, materials that are durable, weather well, and
will fit into the community. There will be over 12,000 square
feet of landscaping."
To support future ownership of the property, Braden is allowing
room for 11 parking spaces although he will only need four plus
the two-car garage space required for private custodial residences.
He said, "It is our hope that by maintaining a landscaped
area for future concerns, that the Planning Department/Commission
can reduce the required off-street parking and be assured of
future development need. The reduction in hardscape for parking
would reduce run-off water to the sewer system, reduce excess
reflected/absorbed heat, and reduce the financial burden of developing
an unused parking area. Both my wife and I are committed to developing
an aesthetically pleasing and affordable project which contributes
to the quality of life in Ojai."
All the Planning Commissioners appeared impressed. Commissioner
John Mirk said, "I like the way you are accommodating 11
spaces for a future owner."
Other items on the agenda Wednesday evening passed without a
whisper of opposition.
The Commission agreed to approve the request by Around the Corner
& Co art gallery on S. Montgomery Street for two business
signs and a wall-mounted painting that have been there. They
also approved a conditional use permit and architectural review
for Andy and Sigrid Bressler for a second-dwelling unit and attached
garage at their residence on Longhorn Lane; and another for Robert
Macy on Foothill Road.
The next Planning Commission meeting is scheduled for Feb. 20
© 2002 The Ojai Valley News
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