View and Tree Policy drafts





  • To implement directives set forth in the PVHA CC&R’s (list passages that apply, see introductory summary and page 36, section 7)
  • To provide guidelines for the evaluation and resolution of view disputes
  • To implement a clear process to residents for managing view issues
  • To document outcomes effectively for future evaluation


  • The type of scenic views may vary considerably from one property to another. Our community was intentionally designed to embrace a variety of features referenced by topography and orientation of lots. Public vistas from roadways and parks are also an important factor of neighborhood character.
  • Note that per PVHA CC&R”s any tree over 20’ tall requires PVHA approval for trimming or removal.
  • For residential view restoration purposes, the main viewing area should be defined and documented.
  • Existing neighborhood character should be considered when altering the treescape.
  • Neighbor’s privacy needs should be balanced with any remedial view measures.
  • Safety may also play into a decision for the type of remediation requested. Branches overhanging a neighbor’s property, roots escaping to a neighbor’s yard and clogging plumbing or compromising foundations, the possibility of structural failure of an aged or diseased tree, should also be considered.
  • Designated trees, those specified on approved plans, grandfathered trees that enhance beauty, and historical trees should be given special consideration as they were intentionally selected for particular attributes.
  • Refer to PVHA Tree Policy


  • “Scenic View” shall mean a view of the community and its special features such as landscapes, ocean, city lights, canyons, golf courses, parkland, architecture, and greenery. This visually impressive scenic vista is to be evaluated from the established “Main Viewing Area” of the residence.
  • “Main Viewing Area” shall mean the primary living area of a residential structure. A “Secondary Viewing Area” may be considered for view remediation pending lot orientation and architectural layout.
  • “Designated Tree” shall refer to a tree specified on an approved plan, a grandfathered tree that adds beauty and function (shade, screening) to the landscape, or a historically significant tree.
  • “Nuisance Tree” shall refer to a tree that is causing safety problems, a tree that is not properly maintained causing a disfigured appearance, or a tree causing a significant view obstruction.
  • “Significant View Obstruction” should be evaluated by the following criteria:
  1.      The extent of obstruction into the scenic view, current and future. Include notation on the age/lifespan of the tree, and natural growth habit of the tree.
  2.      Consideration should be given to the composition of the view as one would look at a painting. Look for proportion and a harmonious blending of features in keeping with the overall vista.
  3.      The quality of the scenic view being obstructed in terms of special features (see definitions of scenic view)
  4.      The extent to which the view has been diminished by factors other than growth of the obstructing tree or vegetation. This may include new additions, residences, trees and landscape beyond the scope of the application.
  5.      The extent to which the view contributes to the enjoyment and economic value of the Applicant’s property.
  6.      The extent to which alteration of the vegetation affects neighboring properties and the overall neighborhood character.


  • Residents who are unable to resolve a view issue in an informal neighborly manner may elect to take the next step to mediation, arbitration or litigation, in ascending order.
  • The goal would be to reach a practical solution within the guidelines set forth by PVHA.


Step 1:

  • Document discussion between neighbors. Provide a plan, photographs and fill out the application form.

Step 2:

  • Select an independent mediator, arbitrator or litigator to address the dispute. In order to be valid, a legal contract between parties must be in agreement with the policies and guidelines of PVHA.

Step 3:

  • Submit a copy of the resolution agreement for review and addition to the property file.
  • Sign off application, close issue.




  1. Trimming of trees and shrubs should conform to ANSI standards* and be performed by an ASI certified tree trimmer or licensed arborisT.
  2. Topping and severe pruning are not permitted.
  3. In order of preference the following techniques* may be employed for view restoration:

a. Lacing

b. Vista Pruning

c. Crown reduction

d. Crown raising

e. Stand thinning

f. Heading back permitted only for hedging

g. Removal and replacement

*an addendum containing visual descriptions is pending

  1. Trimming should be scheduled for the dormant winter months.
  2. Timing of trimming should also conform to the California Department of Fish and Game Code designated under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.  Nesting birds are not to be disturbed.  Visit
  3. Where trimming is required for view preservation, a maintenance schedule for trimming based on the individual species of tree is to be included in the agreement.
  4. LA County Fuel Modification standards also apply to Palos Verdes Estates, restricting tree placement and limiting the height of hedging depending upon their distance from structures.  Additional information can be obtained from the Los Angeles County Fire Department website:

Comments from PVHA members are welcome.  Email:

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Annual Meeting and Board of Directors Election

Annual Meeting and Board of Directors Election

Per the Palos Verdes Homes Association ByLaws, the 93rd Annual Meeting of members will be held January 8, 2019 at 8pm in Palos Verdes Estates City Council Chambers.

The close of elections is Wednesday January 2, 2019 at 4:30pm.

In the months of October, November and December, members will receive Annual Meeting information, member verification and Board of Directors election ballots.  Please help us reach a quorum required to conduct business by returning your member verification and ballot by
mail to the Inspector of Elections at the address on the return mailing envelope as soon as possible before the busy holidays.  NOTE: Per election rules, ballots can not be accepted at the PVHA offices. Do not leave ballots at the PVHA door or on the counter.  They can not be considered valid and will not be counted.  However, as a convenience to members, a secure ballot box monitored by the Inspector of Elections will be available at Palos Verdes Estates City Hall during their office hours up to the close of elections Wednesday January 2, 2019 at 4pm.

Please be certain you have followed the voting instructions included in your mailing when returning the ballot and member verification so that your ballot is valid and will be counted.

If you have any questions,  feel free to contact the PVHA office at 310-373-6721 or stop by.  We are here to help you.  Please keep in mind that PVHA offices will be closed for the Holidays the following days:  November 22 and 23.  December 24 – 28 2018, and New Years Day 2019.

Even if you wish to abstain from voting, please return your member verification so that a quorum may be achieved. 

All ballots must be returned to the Inspector of Elections.   No ballots can be accepted at the PVHA office or at the Annual Meeting.  

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Fall 2018 Bulletin

Category: Bulletin, News, Uncategorized · Tags:

Winter 2017 Bulletin and PVHA White Paper

Click on the page above to open the full document in new window.

GUEST CONTRIBUTOR: Christine Edstrom O’Hara
On the faculty of California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo, professor Christine O’Hara has lectured nationally and internationally on landscape preservation and its application to sustainable landscape design and construction. Christine’s current research focuses on the California work of the Olmsted firm, especially the Olmsted Brothers, and their approach to regionalism.

In 2002 she received the Douglas Dockery Thomas Fellowship in Garden History to study the regional design of Palos Verdes Estates and Balboa Park. From this research, the essay “The Panama-California Exposition, San Diego, 1915: the Olmsted Brothers’ Ecological Approach to Developing a New Park Typology for the Arid West” was published in the Journal for the Society of Architectural Historians, March 2011.

Christine holds a BA from Stanford University in English and art history, a MLA from the University of Washington in landscape architecture and preservation planning, and will soon complete her PhD in landscape architecture from University of Edinburgh. She is a trustee of the National Association for Olmsted Parks.

Christine also practices landscape architecture and historic landscape restoration, specializing in the restoration and preservation of historic landscapes. She views history and contemporary design as companion ideas where history provides the framework for understanding the direction of the field of landscape architecture.


FOOTNOTES: Myron Hunt and His Vision of California Architecture
1 Jean Block, “Myron Hunt in the Midwest,” Myron Hunt, 1868-1952: The Search for Regional Architecture, Exhibition catalogue organized by Baxter Art Gallery (Santa Monica: Hennessey and Ingalls, Inc., 1984), 9.
2 Alison Clark, “Myron Hunt in Southern California,” Myron Hunt, 1868-1952: The Search for Regional Architecture, Exhibition catalogue organized by Baxter Art Gallery (Santa Monica: Hennessey and Ingalls, Inc., 1984), 23, 53.
3 Robert M. Fogelson, The Fragmented Metropolis: Los Angeles, 1850-1939 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1967), 159.
4 Palos Verdes Art Jury Minutes, for consideration of “Types of Architectural Styles for Projects,” 17 January 1923.
5 See Greene and Greene’s Gamble House (1908), Pasadena; Frank Lloyd Wright’s Hollyhock House (1919), Los Angeles; Gordon Kaufmann’s Milton Getz house (1926), Beverly Hills; and Schindler’s personal residence (1924), Hollywood for further examples.
6 Myron Hunt and H.C. Chambers, “The Architecture of the Pasadena Public Library,” 1927, Manuscript: 3 cited from Alison Clark, “Myron Hunt in Southern California.” Hunt and business partner H.C. Chambers designed another building in Southern California about this time, the Riverside Community Hospital (1925), in a U-shaped plan. When asked for its inspiration, Hunt traced the design back to the architecture of Greece and Pompeii.
7 Harold Kirker, Old Forms on a New Land: California Architecture in Perspective (Niwot: Roberts Rinehart Publishers, 1991).
8 Delane Morgan, The Palos Verdes Story (Palos Verdes Peninsula: Palos Verdes Peninsula Library, 1983), 87.

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92 Annual Meeting and Board of Directors Election

January 9, 2018 at 8pm

By now all members should have received the Palos Verdes
Homes Association Annual Meeting materials, member
verification and Board of Directors election ballot.

Please help us reach a quorum required to conduct business
by returning your member verification and ballot using the
return mailing envelope as soon as possible before the busy

Ballots cannot be accepted at the PVHA office.

Election returns are received and processed by:
PVHA Inspector of Elections c/o MOSS ADAMS LLP
10960 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1100 Los Angeles, CA 90024

For member convenience, there will be a secure dropbox
available during business hours at Palos Verdes City Hall
that will be monitored by the Inspector of Elections.

If you have lost or did not receive your ballot, the property
owner of record with a government issued identification
may pick up another ballot at the Palos Verdes Homes
Association office during business hours.

Please keep in mind that PVHA offices are closed every Tuesday, and will be closed for the
holidays December 25 – 29, 2017 and the New Year’s Day holiday January 1, 2018.


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