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Vision El Monte a community of beauty, with greenways, stands of trees, and flowers; a sense of place, with distinct and

well-designed neighborhoods and districts; a community defined by and linked to its rivers, schools, parks, and the downtown through attractive paths and streetsa destination.

Proposals must be delivered no later than Thursday, April 12, 2012 by 5:00 p.m.

City of El Monte City Hall West 11333 Valley Boulevard El Monte, Ca 91731


The City of El Monte realizes that it must initiate a vision to affect its future identity. The City aspires to recapture its rich legacy through the built environment and Community Design Guidelines are best suited to guide this goal. The Community Design Guidelines are to reflect the importance placed on shaping the community identity through carefully guided public and private development. Although not required by state law, the City believes that solid Community Design Guidelines set an important precedent and serve as a guide for how to improve the physical design and appearance of built structures within El Monte. The primary intent of the proposed Community Design Guidelines is to establish citywide policy guidance on how to improve the built and natural environment and creating distinct districts and neighborhoods and, secondarily, to provide more specific policy guidance for the districts and neighborhoods. The Community Design Guidelines shall serve as the policy foundation for the Citys project review process and as a guidance document for all design-related planning efforts. It is meant as a reference for decision makers, planners, architects, builders, and residents to understand how the different parts of the City work together to achieve its overall image and identity.

Creating a distinct community identity is fundamental for El Monte and is the theme of the recently adopted General Plan. This can have many different meanings, each reflecting individual perceptions regarding neighborhoods, safety, aesthetics, parks, and other amenities. Although El Montes identity means different things to different people, it is shaped by common influences. Some of the more notable influences are its people, their history and cultures, the physical and natural environment, and the Citys collective vision of the future. El Montes identity dates back to the Tongva, who were sustained by the San Gabriel and Rio Hondo Rivers. Later Spanish settlements, pioneers, and a thriving agricultural industry defined its 19th and 20th century and was the impetus for its diverse population. Rapid industrialization and suburbanization, including the channeling of the Rio Hondo and San Gabriel Rivers and construction of its transportation infrastructure, has left its imprint on El Monte. Today, the Citys image is uniquely diverse. To shape a new identity for El Monte, the General Plan Vision builds on the core strength of the communityits people and their commitment. Thus, the Community Design Guidelines seek, through the implementation of a wide variety of physical and governance improvements, to create a vibrant and safe city that respects its historical and cultural diversity and strives to provide a high quality of life through well-designed neighborhoods, parks and recreational amenities, and a healthy environment. El Monte is forging a unified community identity by restoring key features of its past, revitalizing strategic areas, and positioning itself for the next (20) twenty years. The City will draw upon its multiple strengths to enhance its image and identityits indigenous roots, pioneer spirit, agricultural heritage, suburban growth, and environmental legacy. These efforts are intended to revive and improve El Montes unique identity and image to residents, visitors, and the business community.

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El Montes Downtown has always been its heart and the gateway to the region. In the late 1800s, Valley Boulevard was the only road and served as the Butterfield Stagecoach stop between Los Angeles and San Bernardino. This early main street gradually evolved into an outdoor shopping district. Today, the Downtown encompasses an area of 200 acres, bordered by the Rio Hondo River, Interstate 10, and Valley Boulevard. The El Monte Downtown (the Downtown) today contains five (5) sub-districts that serve distinct functionscivic, business, transit, residential, or other uses.

Government Center. The government center is the eastern gateway to the Downtown and serves

as the governmental core of El Monte. This area is anchored by the El Monte City Hall offices, Los Angeles County Superior Court, educational uses, and police station. Other governmental and public uses also extend into other districts.

Main Street. Main Street covers an area bounded by the railroad tracks, Santa Anita Boulevard and

Ramona Boulevard. The subdistrict is anchored by a traditional outdoor shopping street. With several blocks of street-facing frontage and tree-lined sidewalks, it connects the civic center to the transit station. Community Center, Historic Society Museum, Jack Crippen Senior Center, Aquatic Center, Tony Arceo Memorial Park, and El Monte High School. It is a well-known place for street fairs, concerts, and community gatherings.

Cultural District. The cultural district is the heart of the community and is home to the El Monte

Neighborhoods. The Downtown has an eclectic mix of housing projects and small distinct

neighborhoods, south of Ramona Boulevard or along Tyler Avenue north of Downtown. The fabric of this area is well established, but could benefit from common design treatments, housing rehabilitation programs, and infrastructure improvements.

El Monte Gateway. The El Monte Gateway Project is a groundbreaking effort to create a 60-acre,
regionally significant, mixed-use community that integrates public transit, housing, parks and open space, retail, business and entertainment. The El Monte Gateway will be a key activity center, linked with the Emerald Necklace.

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What makes Downtown El Monte a special place to live, work, and play is its eclectic environment and unique subdistricts, each of which has a symbiotic relationship with the other subdistricts. Residential neighborhoods provide a customer and job base for the Downtown. The following graphic illustrates the location of each subdistrict. Downtown El Monte is to be the mixed-use, mixed-income, cultural heart of El Monte that epitomizes pride and opportunity. Its historical role is augmented by new housing, retail, office, parks, and cultural facilities. The Downtown takes advantage of transit-oriented development. The population is diverse, the architecture is human-scaled, and the character is authentic to El Monte. Downtown El Monte needs a more unified design to reach its potential with goals and policies that address tangible ways, from a design perspective, to enhance the vibrancy and character of the Downtown.


Every community has a wide variety of community retail centers and El Monte is no exception. Community retail centers in El Monte provide an important service to residents, businesses, and visitors by providing a range of goods and services, including groceries, apparel, household items, and larger item purchases. Except for major commercial corridors, community retail centers present the first initial image of El Monte. Ensuring that commercial centers are well-designed is therefore a key goal of El Monte. The City has a wide variety of community retail centers along major corridors, built at different times over the past decades. Presently, the Citys major commercial centers are along Garvey Avenue, Valley Boulevard, Peck Road, and Lower Azusa Road. The General Plan will establish and regulate three general categories of retail centers in El Monte, each distinguished by their size, function, and location. Each of El Montes commercial centers is one (1) of three (3) typescommunity/regional, neighborhood, and mixed/multiuse nodes.

Regional/Community Retail. These centers provide large-scale commercial uses that

serve an area larger than the City. Auto dealers, home furnishings, building materials and hardware, and big-box retail are examples. Major regional/community commercial centers include the Sams Club, Home Depot, Five Points, and Santa Fe Trail projects. scale retail, such as grocers, drug stores, and services that serve the immediate needs of residents of surrounding residential neighborhoods. There are many examples of neighborhood shopping centers throughout El Monte.

Neighborhood Retail. Neighborhood commercial centers provide convenient and smaller-

Mixed/Multiuse Centers. The Zoning Code provides an overlay zone for portions of

Garvey Avenue, Durfee Road, Valley Boulevard, and Peck Road to encourage a mix of residential and commercial uses. This includes limited retail sales and services that serve surrounding neighborhoods (minor node) and, in certain locations, limited retail sales and services that serve the community (major node).
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The El Monte General Plan contains an implementation program to guide the development, improvement, and rehabilitation of these types of centers. In the meantime, the following goal and policies (in conjunction with the overlay zone) provide the mechanism to approve and condition such projects to achieve the overall goals set forth in the General Plan.

Flair Park has a storied past in El Monte, the original site of a World War II airfield and named after the cable address of Fletcher Aviation. The park originally was intended for industry and commerce. With its strategic location along Interstate 10, mountain views, and vast land assets, Flair Park has evolved into the Citys professional office district. Wells Fargo, Cathay Bank, East West Bank, Chinese Cultural Center, and Los Angeles County have all rediscovered the park. Since its earliest beginnings, El Monte has served as a gateway into the Los Angeles region, where immigrants traveled long distances and settled at the end of the Santa Fe Trail. El Montes role as a gateway city and burgeoning influence in the region continues with the arrival of banking/finance, cultural, and institutional uses that span the Pacific Ocean. Flair Park is to be El Montes professional and financial district. It will be identifiable by the agglomeration of mid- and high-rise office buildings fronting Interstate 10, adorned with the logos of the areas most prominent corporate residents. Flanked with signature architecture and iconic skyline, Flair Park will be denoted by its modern architectural design, business amenities, and efficient access to transportation resources. The Flair Park Specific Plan will support the long-term development and design of El Montes professional and financial district center. Pursuant to an adopted Specific Plan to guide the orderly development and highest and best use, Flair Park will have several key districts, described and illustrated below. financial institutionsCathay Bank, Wells Fargo, East West Bank, etc. This frontage will present a striking iconic skyline to Interstate 10.

Finance Row. The freeway frontage that spans the length of the park will be home to major Gateway District. At the convergence of Rosemead Boulevard and the Rio Hondo River, the

gateway district will signal entry into Flair Park, with low- to mid-rise buildings transitioning to the high-rise frontage and soaring view of the mountains.

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Riverfront District. Flanking the southern edge of the park will be the riverfront district, an
area occupied by smaller-scale land uses that provide a transition from the residential areas south of the river to the more intense office uses within Flair Park.

providing rooms for corporate visitors to have short or extended stays, supporting international business activity and conferences, and further denoting Flairs skyline.

Hospitality District. The hospitality district will anchor the eastern edge of the district,


The Northwest Planning District has historically been the Citys manufacturing district and job engine. With the transformation of manufacturing in the Los Angeles region, the majority of businesses in El Monte have relocated. Nonetheless, the district offers great investment potential due to its strategic location near Interstate 10, vast land resources, and redevelopment project area status. The Northwest Industrial District has the potential to become a first-class, modern industrial district. The Districts vision is to continue to attract a balance of sustainable light manufacturing, distribution, and technology-oriented businesses that are compatible with surrounding residential neighborhoods. The key to this Districts success is creating the environment of a modern industrial park. Industrial building and site design must balance functionality, aesthetics, and compatibility. Streetscapes should provide landscaping and trees to encourage pedestrian movement, not just truck and auto movement.


El Monte is a collection of neighborhoods representative of its varied past. Each neighborhood varies depending on its location, architecture, housing types, and history. Because much of the Citys original development fabric has been erased over time, the preservation, rehabilitation, and restoration of residential neighborhoods is of critical importance. El Montes neighborhoods are.

Norwood-Cherrylee. The Norwood-Cherrylee neighborhood contains a mix of single-family

homes anchored by Lambert Park. It contains the Rurban Homesteads and Wye Street, built during the 1920s as part of an experimental federal housing program. With its rural ambience, the area is distinguished by its equestrian and agricultural heritage.

Arden Village. Arden Village is bordered by the Rio Hondo River, El Monte Airport, and nonresidential uses in northwest El Monte. Historically the site of labor camps for the
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agricultural industries, Arden Village is distinguished by small uniform lots, traditional singlefamily homes, and a distinctive classic identity.

Mountain View. The Mountain View neighborhood, anchored by the Mountain View Park and

elementary school, is bordered by the San Gabriel River. This neighborhood has one of the most diverse types and ranges of housing prices for single-family, multiple-family, mobile homes, and other housing. With its rural ambience, the area is distinguished by its equestrian and agricultural heritage.

Downtown. Downtown El Monte is a diverse area of well-maintained homes, high density

residential, and senior projects. Established small-lot single-family residential neighborhoods extend south of Ramona Boulevard. This area is denoted by its eclectic mix of housing, street configurations, proximity to historical resources, and shopping.

Park El Monte. Park El Monte, southeast of Flair Park and the Rio Hondo River, is
distinguished by curvilinear wide streets, lower scale, single-family homes, and quality housing. Due to the age of the housing, the area needs housing rehabilitation and improvements.

River East. The River East neighborhood is bordered by the San Gabriel River to the east and

Interstate 10 to the south. This neighborhood is made up primarily of residential uses, in particular, multiple-family planned residential developments. The neighborhood is continuing to complete the transition to planned residential uses.

El Monte prides itself on the quality of its residential neighborhoods. Some neighborhoods have a strong identity and tradition. Given the diversity of neighborhoods, the challenges are to: 1) recognize and highlight these distinct neighborhoods within the context of a modern city; 2) restore and enhance neighborhood identities through effective design policies; and 3) put in place policies that will maintain neighborhood character and fabric.

A. The project will involve: 1. A comprehensive development of concise, illustrated and user-friendly Community Design Guidelines for single family and multi-family residential, commercial, and industrial zoning areas; 2. An improved design review process for land use development applications (both administrative and discretionary); and 3. Training for City staff on how to use the Community Design Guidelines and how to implement the design review process. B. The project process will involve three (3) phases, to include: 1. Phase I: Issues Identification a) This phase is meant to develop a full understanding of the design and development issues facing the urban City areas. This phase will involve a review of existing area conditions and development review procedures by the consultant, as well as meetings with City staff, interviews with stakeholders, and workshops with community groups to review issues of concern within the City. This phase will also include a tour of the City,
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with the selected consultant expected to conduct additional fieldwork to document and become familiar with the character of various neighborhoods throughout these areas. b) This phase is broken down into two (2) components: Background research of documents, procedures, and built environment encompassing a systematic review of: i. The Citys General Plan and the various elements affecting design and the physical environment, Zoning Ordinance, land use policies, and general area characteristics to identify elements that act as design guidelines, standards, or otherwise affect building and site design; ii. A sample of case files representing typical development applications; iii. Procedures used to evaluate and process design aspects of development applications; iv. Field conditions, including area visits, photographic documentation of recently completed projects, geographic information systems mapping, and other methods; and Public input derived from the following activities: i. Leadership and facilitation of up to three task force meetings with community stakeholders and City staff soliciting input about the built environment organized by land use and building type or other relevant criteria; Expected Tasks: Review the various community districts and neighborhoods; Review the new General Plan, existing ordinances, policies, and specific plans; Analyze relevant development application procedures; Analyze a sample of planning applications; Document field conditions by land uses and by building types, this would include a photographic, and/or graphic documentation and maps; and Lead and facilitate up to three (3) taskforce meetings with community stakeholders and City staff to gather community concerns. Expected Products: An existing conditions report which, at minimum: Describes and documents design issues of prototypical development; Identifies current design standards, policies and procedures that affect design decisions; Documents public concerns regarding the design of typical development; and Provides additional, supplemental graphics and materials suitable for presentation at public meetings and hearings. 2. Phase II: Solution Development a. This phase involves a continuation of the public outreach and public participation process. Through this forum, based on a thorough understanding of existing conditions, and consistent with professional judgment, provide recommendations on design guidelines best suited to conditions in the City. b. An important component of this phase will be to recommend updates to current development standards, such that the updated standards are consistent with and
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complementary to the Community Design Guidelines while respecting existing desirable qualities within neighborhood context. The recommendations should be in textual and graphic form to make the information conveyed user friendly and easy to understand. The actual updates to the development standards would be conducted through a separate comprehensive review of the Zoning Ordinance, under a different project bidding process. Expected Tasks: Up to five (5) taskforce meetings with community stakeholders to develop the Illustrated Design Guidelines that respond to issues identified during Phase I information gathering; The creation of a draft Community Design Guidelines document; the consultant will publish up to 20 copies of the draft document for circulation and distribution to interested and affected parties; The creation of a draft document with writing and graphics to provide recommendations for updating the development standards in the County Zoning Ordinance; Up to three (3) taskforce meetings with community stakeholders to discuss draft Community Design Standards and the recommended development standards; Up to three (3) meetings before the Planning Commission and the City Council to provide progress updates and to solicit input; The creation of final Community Design Guidelines and recommendations for updates to existing development standards. Expected Products: Community Design Guidelines for use by planners and the public in evaluating and regulating development proposals. The Community Design Guidelines shall have enough detail and clarity to fully inform viewers of the intent of the design guidelines shown. Illustrations may also show examples of undesirable as well as desirable design characteristics in order to better explain concepts. Written and graphic recommendations for updates to existing development standards in the Zoning Ordinance to be consistent with and compliment the recently adopted General Plan; Written procedures and instructions for design review as part of review of a development application; and Other materials related to recommended changes to the existing development standards in Zoning Ordinance. 3. Phase III: Adoption and Implementation a. Adoption: The consultant would be expected to attend and to present information at up to two (2) public hearings before the Planning Commission and up to two (2) public hearings before the City Council for the adoption of the Community Design Guidelines. Additional public meetings may be necessary, on a time-and-materials basis. b. Implementation: This is meant to ensure that training and support materials are developed and provided to Planning staff to ensure that the adopted Community Design Guidelines are implemented. Also, the consultant will be expected provide staff with recommendations for updates to development standards in the Citys Zoning
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Ordinance so that the development standards are consistent with and complement the Community Design Guidelines. Expected Tasks: Consultant to lead and conduct at least one (1) task force meeting with community stakeholders to discuss Draft Community Design Guidelines and recommendations; Development of training materials with examples for implementing adopted Community Design Guidelines; Development of a report with recommended changes to the existing development standards in the Zoning Ordinance; Development of recommendations for improved design review processes for development applications; One (1) training session with staff to describe Community Design Guidelines and how to use them; One, three- to six-month follow up session with City staff to discuss modifications, as may be necessary. Expected Products: Post-adoption implementation and training materials for the Community Design Guidelines, for the recommended updates to the development standards in the Zoning Ordinance, and for recommended improvements to the design review process for development applications.

Please be advised that the Scope of Work outlined above has been provided as the Citys anticipated work efforts involved with such preparation of Community Design Guidelines. Thus, consultants are encouraged to present their own creativity based upon their prior experience. Ultimately, the City looks forward to a proposal that outlines the most efficient and cost-effective way to perform the work and products described above. It should also be noted that it is the desire of the City staff to commence the public hearings for consideration of adoption by June 2012. A copy of the Citys adopted 2011 General Plan can be found on the Citys web-site at:


All responses to this RFP must contain the following information: Cover Letter. This should present the consultants understanding of the project and the methodology that will be used. It should include the name, address, email and phone number of the person(s) to contact regarding the proposal Work Plan. Describe the proposed approach and activities to be accomplished (i.e., scope of work, project schedule, deliverables, etc.). Describe what strategy you would use for community outreach and public participation. The primary efforts should be directed toward consolidation of information and presentation in a clearly understandable format. Include response to creating a document that is web friendly and interactive. Firm Qualifications (please note that it is not necessary to include extensive marketing materials). Describe the firms experience in managing projects similar in nature to the
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proposed Community Design Guidelines. This should include a description of prior experience in working with public agencies, including working with City staff and policymakers, and preparing and presenting materials at public workshops and hearings. The proposal shall include a list of other similar design guidelines projects. This shall include the following information: a. Project name and location; b. Brief description of project and firms responsibilities; c. Consultants project manager; d. Preparation date; e. Budget; and f. Contact name, address, and phone number for client Project Team. Provide a resume of the project manager, who shall be a full-time employee of the firm, including a description of experience relevant to the project. Also provide resumes of key personnel who will be assigned to the project. References. Provide three (3) business-related references for the firm, and two (2) of which are familiar with the project manager. This shall include the name, company, contact information and business relationship to the firm. Samples. Provide two (2) samples of recently completed assignments for design guidelines for the firm, and one (1) sample recently completed by the project manager. Schedule. Provide an estimated schedule to complete each of the tasks. This should include the amount of time required to complete each individual task, and the time to allow staff to review and respond to the submitted material. Cost. This should include payment expectations, hourly rates, anticipated hours of work, and costs for meeting attendance, printing, and other miscellaneous costs as applicable. Also include a not-to-exceed amount for completing the entire project.

The Economic Development Department has not established a budget for the preparation of the requested Community Design Guidelines. Proposed budgets should be adequate but not excessive, and consideration will be given to the proposal that outlines the most efficient and cost-effective approach to perform the scope of work and work products requested. Additionally, respondents should be mindful of the Citys budgetary constraints and should understand that there may be a need to complete the Community Design Guidelines for the individual districts and/or neighborhoods over a longer time period rather than for the entire City at one time. Therefore, respondents are encouraged to provide not-to-exceed budgets for individual components in order to allow for such flexibility.


As part of this RFP process, the City is also requesting for a supplemental proposal to potentially provide ongoing contracted design review services to the City for private development project proposal. The scope of review is for project site planning, architectural and landscape design, and project signage. The request for supplemental services will be evaluated separately and independent from the development of the Community Design Guidelines and the City may choose to independently contract with one or more firms for the stated supplemental scope of services.
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To assist in the preparation of this proposal please provide the following information: The firms experience in the site planning, architectural and landscape design, and sign design principles; list of projects where the firm was the lead designer for the above design elements; Cost proposal for on-going services (i.e. fee structure, billing rate for various services, etc.); Experience with providing peer review services to supplement City staff; List of references; Provide a cost estimate for the review of the above elements for the following typical development proposal: Project Type Single Tenant Commercial Single Tenant Commercial Single Tenant Commercial Big Box Single Family Dwelling Planned Unit Development Multi Family Multiple Tenant Retail/Office Industrial Development Square Footage/Number of Units 0-10,000 sq. ft. 10,000-30,000 sq. ft. 30,000-60,000 sq. ft. 60,000 plus sq. ft. 1,500-6,000 sq. ft. 0-10 dwelling units 4-50 dwelling units 20,000 sq. ft. and above 1 acre and above 25,000 sq. ft. and above 1 acre and above Site Design Architectural and Signage Landscape

Please note that the response to the above examples will only serve to provide the City with an estimated cost for review services and is not considered a binding cost proposal. It is the Citys intent to establish a deposit-based system to fund the above consulting services to supplement City staffs review of project development proposals.

Eight (8) bound copies and one (1) duplicable copy on a CD of the proposal shall be submitted and identified as Community Design Guidelines. All proposals must be received by 5:00 PM on Thursday, April 12, 2012, postmarks will not be accepted. Hand deliver or send proposals to the address below.
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Damien R. Arrula Economic Development Director City Hall West 11333 Valley Boulevard El Monte, CA 91731 If additional information or clarification is needed regarding this RFP, please contact Rebecca Duarte, at (626) 580-2096 or via email at

RFP Issued: Request for Clarification Deadline: Proposal Due Date: Consultant Interviews: Award Date: Monday, March 12, 2012 Monday, April 2, 2012 Thursday, April 12, 2012 Tuesday, May 1, 2012 Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Economic Development Department will evaluate all proposals based on, but not limited to, the following criteria and will be assigned a score with a maximum of 100 points: Professional qualifications and capabilities of the firm and its project management personnel (10 points maximum). Past experience of the project manager to successfully manage such a project (20 points maximum). Relevant experience of the firm with similar types of projects (10 points maximum). Results of reference checks (20 points maximum). Overall quality of the proposal, including clarity of content (10 points maximum). Demonstration of a clear understanding of the project (10 points maximum). Cost related to the level of work proposed, and time schedule for completion (20 points maximum). The City of El Monte reserves the right to require an oral interview of any and all respondents prior to the final scoring and selection. In the event an oral interview is required, the respondents will be provided with a minimum advanced notice of one (1) week.


The City of El Monte reserves the right to reject any and/or all proposals submitted. No guarantee is made hereby that any contract will be awarded pursuant to the Request for Proposals, or otherwise. All costs incurred in the preparation of the proposals, in the submission of additional information, and/or in any other aspect of a proposal prior to the award of a written contract will be borne by the respondent(s).

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