General. The bulk limits prescribed by Section 270 have been carefully considered in relation to objectives and policies for conservation and change in C-3 Districts. However, there may be some exceptional cases in which these limits may properly be permitted to be exceeded to a certain degree, provided, however, that there are adequate compensating factors. Exceptions to the bulk limits may be approved in the manner provided in Section 309, provided that at least one of the following criteria is met:
Achievement of a distinctly better design, in both a public and a private sense, than would be possible with strict adherence to the bulk limits, avoiding an unnecessary prescription of building form while carrying out the intent of the bulk limits and the principles and policies of the Master Plan;
Development of a building or structure with widespread public service benefits and significance to the community at large, where compelling functional requirements of the specific building or structure make necessary such a deviation; and provided further that all of the following criteria are met:
The added bulk does not contribute significantly to shading of publicly accessible open space,
The added bulk does not increase ground level wind currents in violation of the provisions of Section 148 of this Code;
The added bulk does not significantly affect light and air to adjacent buildings;
If appropriate to the massing of the building, the appearance of bulk in the building, structure or development is reduced to the extent feasible by means of at least one and preferably a combination of the following factors, so as to produce the impression of an aggregate of parts rather than a single building mass:
Major variations in the planes of wall surfaces, in either depth or direction, that significantly alter the mass,
Significant differences in the heights of various portions of the building, structure or development that divide the mass into distinct elements,
Differences in materials, colors or scales of the facades that produce separate major elements,
Compensation for those portions of the building, structure or development that may exceed the bulk limits by corresponding reduction of other portions below the maximum bulk permitted, and
In cases where two or more buildings, structures or towers are contained within a single development, a wide separation between such buildings, structures or towers;
The building, structure or development is made compatible with the character and development of the surrounding area by means of all of the following factors:
A silhouette harmonious with natural land-forms and building patterns, including the patterns produced by height limits,
Either maintenance of an overall height similar to that of surrounding development or a sensitive transition, where appropriate, to development of a dissimilar character,
Use of materials, colors and scales either similar to or harmonizing with those of nearby development, and
Preservation or enhancement of the pedestrian environment by maintenance of pleasant scale and visual interest.
Exceptions to bulk limits shall not result in a building of greater total gross floor area than would be permitted if the bulk limits were met.
(Added by Ord. 414-85, App. 9/17/85; amended by Ord. 182-12 , File No. 120665, App. 8/8/2012, Eff. 9/7/2012)
Formerly undesignated concluding paragraph designated as division (a)(6); Ord. 182-12 , Eff. 9/7/2012.