The statement was approved, 4-1-2, with Vice Chairman Blair Farley voting against it.
The Downtown Specific Plan is a long-range planning document that dictates building and parking specifications and design guidelines. The plan is being updated to increase development over the next 20 years.
The city has held a series of workshops and six study sessions on the updates. The plan must also gain the approval of the City Council.
It is expected to go before the council in November for a public hearing.
The commissioners passed a number of straw votes to lower building heights and densities allowances to preserve the downtown’s “village feel.”
“The people were clear that they didn’t want this urban takeover of the downtown,” Commissioner Barbara Delgleize said.
The building heights were lowered from the proposed five-story, 55-foot allowance in certain areas to a four-story, 45-foot maximum, said Jennifer Villasenor, associate planner with the city. The commission also brought down the maximum allowed density from 50 dwelling units per acre to 35.
In the first public hearing on the updates Oct. 6, the commission approved the environmental impact report for the plan and passed a handful of straw votes to preserve Triangle Park, limit the square footage allowance of the Main Street Library, open up parking options in the area to more than just underground and allow a small cafe on the park.
One of the main concerns for residents was changes that would allow the development of a cultural center on the park and destroy the library on it.
There is no proposal for a center, but the Huntington Beach Marketing and Visitors Bureau commissioned a study to find out the feasibility of one.
Commissioners assured residents they would protect the park and library from development at the first meeting.
About a dozen residents attended the meeting Monday and four residents spoke during public comment, but more than 250 residents attended the first public hearing.
“The people really came out and spoke and a lot of good came out of it,” Delgleize said.