PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES

9 JANUARY 2001

7:00 P.M.

 

  1. CALL MEETING TO ORDER
  2. Mr. Syfert called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.

  3. ROLL CALL
  4. Members Present: Donald Darby, Councilman Steve Galster, Richard

    Huddleston, David Okum, Councilman Tom Vanover

    David Whitaker and William Syfert.

    Others Present: Derrick Parham, Asst. City Administrator

    William McErlane, Building Official

    Don Shvegzda, Asst. City Engineer

    Anne McBride Ė City Planner

  5. MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING OF 12 DECEMBER 2000
  6. Mr. Vanover moved for adoption and Mr. Whitaker seconded the motion. By voice vote, all voted aye, and the Minutes were adopted unanimously.

  7. CORRESPONDENCE
    1. Report on Council
    2. Mr. Galster reported that the zoning change and map of Springdale Plaza was approved unanimously. Mikeís Car Wash also was approved unanimously. There was a letter from Mr. Sharkey in reference to Creative Kids World and even though there was an additional comment that over the holidays there was some outdoor music playing, hopefully from our meeting last month the problem has been properly addressed.

      Mr. Syfert commented all of you got a copy of the letter Mr. Sharkey wrote to Randy Danbury in which he thanked the Planning Commission. Mr. Galster added that the Mayor read that letter two council meetings ago, and he was pretty complimentary to the Planning Commission.

    3. Zoning Bulletin Ė December 10, 2000
    4. Zoning Bulletin Ė December 20, 2000
    5. Zoning Bulletin Ė Index 2000
    6. 12/21/00 Letter to Robert Hacker from William McErlane re Creative Kids World Conditional Use Permit
    7. 12/18/00 Letter to Members of Planning Commission from Shirley and Mike Sharkey, 355 Naylor Court

  1. OLD BUSINESS
    1. Approval of Final PUD Development Plan, Cassinelli Square, Redevelopment of Building "D" (former Cinema Building) Tabled 12/12/00

Michael Schuster, representing Kimco, the developer, said since our last meeting, I think we have addressed most of the outstanding issues

 

PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES

9 JANUARY 2001

PAGE TWO

V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. Schuster said that there is an existing 24,466 s.f. building, formerly the cinema. It was originally approved in the mid-nineties for a development site. We are coming back in to put a building in its place.

We provided some dimensional modification to some of the sidewalks and landscaped areas to increase the landscaped area that we had before. We have an eight-foot strip of landscape as you drive in the driveway and we have put in a fencing detail as well.

The building is approximately 23,250 s.f. It would be a four-sided building, and on the backside, the very center of it is a trash area that would be in an enclosed wall with gates.

We are also looking at one of two options. Approximately 8550 s.f. might be a restaurant location, depending on tenant negotiations. There also was a concern about the location of the trash area. On the building plan it was shown in the center, and on the development plan it was shown off to the edge, and that has been modified on the preliminary development plan.

We have not done any modifications to the building elevations and the building materials will match a lot of the development that happened in 1994 and 1995.

We are taking down some trees and we have not modified that from last time. Using the Tree Preservation Ordinance, we actually exceed the requirements.

The landscaped areas have not been modified. We have shown a little more of the specific dimensions, the eight-foot strip and we still have the green open space through the backside of the parking area.

What has been modified slightly, and we are open to suggestions from staff, is the retaining wall on the south side of the parking. That retaining wall allows us to get floor plates in the building so we can flatten the site a little bit and make it more flexible for tenanting. The retaining wall is 17í at the high end and 3 Ĺí at the low end and disappears into a small landscaping area. We modified the pipe rail and the staff recommendation was for something more decorative. We have received copies of something that is more comfortable for staff; we donít have any problems, and will work with staff on the details. (It is similar to what is at Costco, and will enhance the site).

Coming in the driveway, the question was whether eight feet was enough of a distance from the drive, and whether that would be a guardrail situation. Essentially all traffic through this area is running parallel to this. Our traffic engineer feels that eight-foot is a sufficient area and there is a raised curb as well. There is no traffic right here moving into the site.

 

 

 

 

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. Schuster said that the question was raised as to whether this area might have a traffic flow problem, but the proposed tenant has fairly limited car usage. When we talked to our traffic engineer, he felt that it might at times be slightly inconvenient, but not considered unsafe.

Mr. Galster said this is a modification to Building D, and I did not notice any Building H on this, which was previously approved. Is this modification with or without Building H?

Mr. Schuster responded right now we are not asking for Building H. Building H was approved on the Preliminary PUD Plan. Building H is something that in the future could come back, but it would have to come back under a separate Final Development Plan.

Mr. Schuster added there was an issue about square footage. The way the square footage was calculated was from a CAGIS photograph, and we felt that from a square footage standpoint, we were within the preliminary PUD submission square footage. So, we didnít look at the square footage as a whole, because it already had been looked at. We apologize for that. We went back through field measurements and actual survey information and recalculated the square footage for all the buildings on the site, and we have submitted that to staff. There was a 14,000-15,000 square foot discrepancy in the numbers and we have put in very specific dimensioning at this point.

Mr. Galster said so this modification to this PUD modifies Building D and eliminates Building H, is that correct? Mr. Schuster responded it doesnít modify Building H; it is the final submission for Building D. Mr. Galster responded but the plan I have in front of me doesnít have Building H on it. If I am looking at this plan to modify as the PUD plan, it doesnít have Building H on it. So if Building H was ever presented, it would have to come back as an additional modification to the PUD? Mr. Schuster answered absolutely.

Mr. Shvegzda reported that the applicant indicated that the storm water management details would be submitted. The wall on the south side of the building will be a typical cast in place retaining wall, and; we need the details for review. There was a request for verification regarding the lateral offset from the travel lane to the retaining wall to make sure it is a safe distance and that no guardrail would be required. I assume we will get written verification on that. Mr. Schuster reported that we have comments; that is no problem.

The plans were clarified regarding the 8-foot distance at the south for the landscaped area. The dimensions are called from the north south, and we need to have that 8-foot dimension called out on the site plan for that area. Mr. Schuster responded we have done that on the revised plan.

Mr. Shvegzda said we need clarification as to where the actual proposed curbing within the site will be. Mr. Schuster responded all the plant areas and sidewalk areas would have curbs.

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. Okum asked if Mr. Shvegzda felt comfortable with the amount of traffic that the south section would produce, that there would not be any traffic safety issues at that intersection. Mr. Shvegzda responded we have not looked at the actual traffic to be generated from that use, not knowing which is going where, but there is a four way stop at that intersection with the main driveway. The concern would be that in some hours the traffic might stack up going south waiting to go to the east west drive would allow the vehicles exiting the proposed parking lot to leave. As far as a sight distance issue it is readily clear. We have traffic that is stopping at that location on the north south drive, so there doesnít appear to be a safety issue.

Mr. Okum said if I was coming in going eastbound on the entrance and decided to turn left into that site, and there was a car or two cars stopped at that stop sign, I would be precluded from turning left into that area. Therefore I would stop on the right side of that

through lane, prohibiting other cars from turning left into that same through lane.

Mr. Schuster said it would depend on how many cars would be moving through there. Our traffic engineer looked at this and felt that the speed of any traffic at the stop sign is very slow. He felt that it may be a little inconvenient, but wouldnít be a safety issues. Mr. Shvegzda added the big benefit is the four way stop.

Ms. McBride reported that the staff is satisfied that the revised square footage is accurate. We have done parking calculations both with and without the restaurant. The applicant assumed that the vacant HQ Building would remain a home improvement type store, and I donít think that is a safe assumption given todayís market and the fact that it is almost 105,000 s.f. A more appropriate category to use for the development is a shopping center. Based on that, the existing development would require a total of 1608 parking spaces if the new building were to be all retail, and 1718 spaces if 8550 s.f were restaurant. The applicant is proposing a total of 1424 spaces on the site after redevelopment, which would leave them a shortage of 181 or 294 parking spaces, depending if it is retail or retail with a restaurant. Given that there will be a mix of uses in there and that is significant vacant space there, staff doesnít feel that shortage will be a problem. It also is consistent percentage wise with what was at the center previously.

We mentioned the proposed Building H, and Planning is not being asked to take action on that. That would be coming back to you for development plan review, just as this building is coming before the commission.

The building is proposed to be located 20 feet from the west property line and our PUD District requires 75 feet. That was approved as part of the zoning map amendment, but we wanted to point that out to the commission.

We have not received the details for the enclosure for the waste area, and we need to see the specifics of those. I think staff can work that out with the applicant.

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Ms. McBride stated that they have requested to see the open space calculations for this site Ė a minimum 20% open space is required. The applicant provided us with the building density calculations, but that doesnít begin to address the impervious surface area. I talked to them today, and maybe they could share that information with the commission.

We still need to see the details of the material those retaining walls will be constructed out of and what they will look at. The applicant mentioned the fact that they originally proposed a 42" painted pipeguard along the top of that southern retaining wall. We sent them a fence detail for what was used at the Costco development, and I think the applicant is agreeable to installing that.

They have indicated that they will put the bumper blocks for the southern 14 parking spaces. They show up on the detail sheet but not on the other drawings, so we want to make sure they are included in the other drawings.

There was a question as to whether there was enough space between the access drive and the parking area given the retaining wall, to do the types of plantings. They have created a true 8-foot area in there that will accommodate the proposed landscaping.

The applicant talked about our Tree Replacement Ordinance, and I think the City and Commission need to look at revising that ordinance to include a redevelopment provision. That is something we can talk about at the end of the meeting.

We didnít receive any details on signage, so that would have to come back in for approval. There are two message boards on the site that need to come down, and the applicant agreed to do that.

They are proposing only one new fixture and pole, and we are waiting confirmation that it matches the existing lighting. We also are waiting confirmation on the details of how the mechanical equipment will be screened from view.

We have added the restriction that there be no outdoor storage display or sale of goods on this portion of the PUD.

Mr. Okum asked about the retaining wall details. Mr. Schuster stated that it is a cast in place concrete retaining wall with score lines that were shown on the elevation. Mr. Okum commented I donít have a problem with a cast in place concrete but I would like to see something more than score lines on it. They are doing a lot with stone-faced concrete panels that would give it more dimensions than a concrete barrier wall. It will be visible for most people. You are doing a nice job with the landscaping. He asked Ms. McBride to comment, adding that this is a pretty massive wall, and I donít find the score lines to be anything more than the appearance of expansion joints

 

 

PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Ms. McBride stated that they were looking for a little more architectural treatment on that wall. That is why we were asking for additional details.

Mr. Schuster stated we could provide a little more of that. We wanted to get the point across that it is a cast in place wall, rather than the stacked wall that was discussed before. If it is a matter of getting some level of texture on it, that is not a problem. We have to look at the width of it relative to the type of construction we use. There are more precast panels out there that have more of a textured appearance that are made as precast pieces. But, from an engineering standpoint, the cast in place is the way to retain the site. Providing some type of texture on the wall is what we will probably look at from a design standpoint.

Mr. Okum said I am thinking more like the form liners that go inside forms that give it a dimension. Mr. Schuster responded that kind of texture is something we can achieve. Mr. Okum added something more than a drivitt look or stucco. Mr. Schuster said I think we can achieve something like that. If we are looking at trying to make it look like a stone wall, that starts to preclude some of the way of doing the cast in place work. But to do some kind of form liner is possible. Mr. Okum asked Ms. McBride to work with the applicant on that.

Mr. McErlane said to clarify what this application is intended to be, there was a preliminary plan approved in 1993, which included retail building in this vicinity. That building was 23,600 s.f. and this one is 23,250 s.f. Where it deviates from the preliminary plan is this one is proposed to have possibly 8550 s.f. of restaurant. Obviously the configuration is a little different from the previous one was. As part of the preliminary plan, the schedule submitted had this building proposed to be built in 1995. Other than those three issues, it is consistent with the preliminary plan, so it is really a consideration by Planning Commission to approve this as a portion of the final plan, based on that preliminary plan that was approved by Planning and Council.

At the last meeting we saw some colored renderings or photos, but we didnít get any for file, so we donít have a color pallet. Mr. Schuster replied we indicate on the drawings the specific EIFS material and any specific paint color on the elevations. As far as getting a final sample board, we showed those last time. Mr. McErlane responded but we have none for our records. Mr. Schuster responded if you need one, weíll get you a final sample board, but it is essentially what we showed last time.

With respect to any signs on this building, they either would comply with code or come back to this commission for approval.

The Tree Preservation Ordinance is written for undeveloped sites, to try to encourage the saving of trees as well as replanting for trees that are cut down. Based on the specific requirements of the code, they are meeting the requirements. The required replanting is 42 Ĺ caliper inches, and they are proposing 51.

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. McErlane stated that because this is a redevelopment of an existing site, you canít get a feel for what is really happening unless you take a look at what trees are being removed and what is being planted. There are a total of 58 trees being removed at 273 caliper inches, and 17 trees are being replaced at 51 caliper inches.

The landscaping plan didnít label two of the trees, but we assume they are all the same trees. Mr. Schuster confirmed this.

Ms. McBride commented on some restrictions on outdoor storage and sale of goods. As it stands right now, there is nothing to that effect in the existing Covenants. The question I would raise to the commission is whether or not those should be included in the Covenants or we can feel comfortable enough to make it a condition of this approval. I would like to add that it is difficult when we make that broad of a statement, and someone wants to have a sidewalk sale, to explain to them that they canít do it and someone else in the center can. Our concern typically is long term display of goods outside, constant occurrences of that. Sidewalk sales are permitted twice a year for a two-week period each. The other sale we do permit outside would be a tent sale, which is permitted four times a year for a two-week period. Those are reasonable. The ones we run into problems with are seasonal sale permits that the code allows for a four-month period and really are intended for plant materials and mulch and those type of things. Retailers try to stretch that to include play sets and anything else you can imagine that you can store outside.

Mr. Syfert asked him what he recommended, and Mr. McErlane responded if the commission feels comfortable enough to make that a condition of the approval, I would suggest that there be a prohibition on outdoor storage display and sale of goods with the exception of sidewalk sales and tent sales.

Mr. Huddleston asked if the prohibition would apply to the whole PUD, or this variance to the PUD. Mr. McErlane responded it is only this particular section of the PUD. Mr. Huddleston wondered why it would not be applied to the entire PUD. Mr. McErlane answered you could consider that; that would be something the applicant would have to discuss.

Mr. Schuster said we donít know who those next tenants might be in other parts of the property. I think if a tenant wants to come in that modifies the site to allow for outdoor sales areas, they should come to the Commission and show you what how and where they are going to do that. There are some retailers who do some level of outdoor areas in a way that are positive. I think to put a blanket statement across the whole development without going through it may beÖ.Mr. Huddleston said you have asked us to modify your development plan for this particular portion, and you have asked us to give up our control on the other portion which is now vacant and was very hazardous when it existed.

 

 

 

 

PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. Schuster said depending on the modifications that are proposed, that may have to be resubmitted as well. I donít know. I think you are talking about the HQ outdoor area, is that correct? Mr. Huddleston answered that is correct, but you are at the same time asking us to modify a portion of this and disregarding what could happen in the future on another portion.

Mr. Schuster responded I am just giving a suggestion; I am not asking you to disregard anything. We are looking at the development of this particular site, that is all.

Mr. Huddleston asked how the commission addresses the variance in parking required here from what they are proposing to what is existing? Does that require a variance to the PUD at BZA? Ms. McBride answered it is a PUD and this commission specifically has the ability to vary the parking requirements. Mr. Huddleston asked if there had been a problem there in the past, and Ms. McBride indicated that there had not been.

Mr. Okum said when you consider a PUD modification, you are considering the entire PUD. This modification is a modification to the entire PUD and not just that one isolated site. We have to look at that site as a whole in my opinion. Mr. McErlaneís remarks re the tree replacement are valid; according to this they meet the minimum standards. The prohibition on outdoor storage and sales should be a part of the covenants. I agree that the latitude for sidewalk sales to be permitted should be a part of that covenant and should not be restricted any more than any other site in the community. On the other hand, we are considering the entire site.

I do have a question on Building H. I am still wondering if H is a part of the plan; it is gone now. If it is gone, we still are considering the entire site, and H is no longer a consideration.

Mr. Schuster responded it is my understanding that there was a preliminary PUD submission that was approved originally. The only reason that we are coming back in now with the final development plan for Building D is because the theater that was continued operation for a period of time and that project didnít happen as we anticipated. This proposal today is for final development plan for Building D. We still have a preliminary approved plan from Planning Commission, a site that includes Building H, but we are not asking for any specific approval of Building H right now. Our understanding is that Building H would have to be done under a final development plan approval as well. Any issues you might have about Building H would come up at that time.

Mr. McErlane reported that the preliminary plan for this development was originally scheduled to be phased development and Building D would not be developed until the cinemas were closed and demolished. At that time they felt that would occur in 1995 and it didnít happen.

 

 

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. McErlane said based on that preliminary plan, there could be another phase based on Building H being developed. Unless the developer submits a new preliminary plan saying we want this new Building D to replace the old Building D and no Building H, then Building H is still there as a preliminary plan.

Mr. Okum said so although Building H is not a consideration, it was still approved under the preliminary plan and we are not eliminating Building H this evening. Mr. McErlane confirmed this, adding that at the same time you have to look at parking numbers relative to the original Building H. You canít throw it out if it is still on the board in terms of preliminary plan. So Building H was taken into consideration with the parking calculations.

Ms. McBride responded no, Building H, based on all retail, would take an additional 27 parking spaces, but there is no way to calculate how many spaces would be lost by that building because you donít know the configuration of the building, how the parking field will be laid out, where the landscaped areas will be etc. So, there is no way to give you an end overall calculation for the PUD until the applicant comes in and submits something for Building H.

Mr. Okum said if we were to look at this site on its own merit, the number of parking spaces are pretty much in tune with what they had originally submitted, allowing for both H and D. Ms. McBride confirmed that, adding that they are in the 80-81 percentage in terms of their original submittal. Mr. Okum said the issue of Building H is that it is not being taken away from the site.


Addressing Mr. Shvegzda, Mr. Okum said letís say the applicant comes forward with not substantial information to support the need for a guardrail in front of the wrought iron fence recommended by Ms. McBride. If the motion would stick to a guardrail of wire and post, would that be acceptable (if that were required)?

Mr. Shvegzda responded in this location, providing they had enough offset for the guardrail to deflect before it got to the retaining wall, yes.

Mr. Okum commented we donít know what will happen after you get to the final review, and we want to make sure that if it were to be done, Iíd much rather see that than a solid guardrail.

Mr. Shvegzda responded the only drawback to that particular guardrail system is that they have relatively low speeds and the ability to deflect more than your typical guardrails.

Mr. Okum asked if there would be light packs on the back of the building. Mr. Schuster responded the only light that we would have on the back would be around the enclosure on the backside of the building. This is for safety. Any light would be a lens downlilt only.

Mr. Okum asked about the existing light pole in the back, and Mr. Schuster responded that we will only add one additional light pole and will match the existing.

PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. Galster said I still am having a problem with Building H. If we are going to look at all these things separately, it seems like we should have multiple PUDs. A PUD is an overall development plan, and to say we have preliminary on this part of it and approved on this part and a final over here and a preliminary over here, Iím not comfortable with that. Twenty years from now I can see them coming back and saying we have a preliminary approval for this building; I donít understand how we are supposed to calculate that into this project, when I am looking at drawings that donít show that building. In my mind a PUD is the whole development, and I donít understand why it is broken up in little pieces.

Ms. McBride said you are exactly right; a PUD is over the entire development, and that is why the PUD District sets on the entire development. But, when developers come in and do a development of this size, they give you their best guess of what will go in there. As they sign those leases and get the various tenants, they come in for final development plan. In a lot of cases, it is for the entire development and in some cases, they end up with outlots that come in at different phases of the development. I think what has happened is Building H was an outlot so to speak, and it hasnít happened. I assume it is still their intention to try to market and develop that but at this point of time, they have not secured anyone to go in there, so all they have on that is concept approval. Concept approval in my mind means they have a square footage number locked in. If they canít go back and make the parking work to the satisfaction of this commission with the tear down of the theater and the addition of the 23,250 s.f. plus whatever they are going to do with Building H user and that configuration, Building H comes up for grabs.

Mr. Galster wondered why that needed to be separate and not part of this overall approval of the PUD. If in fact it is still subject to the same interpretation, why isnít part of a complete PUD modification and final plan tonight. Then if Building H is modified, it would be another modification to the final plan.

Ms. McBride responded maybe what the applicant should have done is to have had a box that said Building H with 6400 s.f. on it. Mr. Schuster reported that on one of the original submissions we did put that into the package. We assumed that was still in your possession.

Mr. Galster said letís look at another PUD as an example that is multiple staged development. Pictoria Island came in and said they would build five office buildings and four restaurants, and maybe a hotel. Then they came back and said three restaurants, rearrange the first office building and maybe even the second one. When we looked at that modification to the PUD, we still looked at the site as a whole, understanding that if they wanted to come back in and put a hotel in, it still would be a modification to the whole PUD. I have a hard time making decisions based on the whole PUD, when Iím not evaluating the whole PUD.

 

 

 

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Ms. McBride responded yes and no; we are evaluating the whole PUD in that we looked at the entire square footage of it, we looked at the parking calculations for the whole thing, we have asked for the open space calculations for the entire PUD. We are trying to make sure that the lighting standards match the entire PUD. In terms of the details, if you looked at this area of the PUD and started to try to look at the details of it in the whole site plan, it would be very hard to do. I think what they have done is popped out this area so we were able to look at the details.

Mr. Galster responded so when we look at Drawing EX1 in this final PUD approval, we donít show Building H, so we have to go back to the 1993 final in order to find Building H on the plan.

Mr. Schuster said as I understand it, if we are going to redo the whole site, we would have to come back in for a modification to the PUD. This is a final PUD submission for this part of the project only, not a modification to the PUD, but a final submittal for this particular portion of that.

Mr. Galster said in six years, I have never seen a PUD that we have evaluated in phases. Mr. Syfert said we do it all the time. Mr. Schuster said the Just for Feet building was one. Mr. Galster said when we modify a PUD, we are still looking at the whole site and modifying the whole PUD and not just this one building. Mr. Syfert said we are looking at this whole site, too. They have carved out two little sections, H and D, and all we are doing is replacing what was there before with what was approved by this commission as a preliminary revision to the PUD. Mr. Galster said but I am looking at drawings that donít show Building H.

Ms. McBride suggested that if the Commission chooses to act on this tonight, one of the requirements would be that the applicant submit a revised final development plan for the entire PUD that would label the area where Building H was originally approved for concept at a maximum 6400 s.f. That is what they have approval for today. Then, if they come back in for final development plan approval, we will look at the specifics of that site. Mr. Galster is correct in that we donít have anything that shows all of the changes that have taken place over the years. If the commission wishes to see the entire PUD with all of the changes including the proposed Building H, then maybe that is a condition that the commission might want to place on the applicant.

Mr. Schuster stated we would be happy to show that block on the final development plan as a reference plan.

Mr. Galster asked about the dumpster wall facing Steak Ďní Shake, asking if it were a split face concrete block wall. . Mr. Schuster answered that it is, with a painted decorative band of color. Mr. Galster asked for a color rendering, and Mr. Schuster answered that he did not have one, but the same materials that are used on the building would be used on the dumpster. This section will look like it is a solid wall of the building. There will be gates that are perpendicular to Princeton Pike.

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. Vanover said in the copy of the covenants that we received last month, under (C) Phase Three 1996 "Retail Building G will be the new construction in the area immediately west of Homes Quarters on Tri-County Parkway." The last sentence is of interest "Please note that Building H as previously shown on the plans, has been eliminated." This is dated 3/11/94.

Mr. Schuster said I think that was part of the submission at that time. Mr. Vanover said those are the covenants. Mr. Schuster responded I apologize but that wasnít our understanding. I thought that Building H needed to comes back in for submission. It was a misunderstanding.

Mr. Okum moved to approve the modifications to the final development plan of Cassinelli Square to include:

    1. Recommendations by staff, city engineer and city planner;
    2. The decorative railing submitted by the applicant is not acceptable and a railing to be approved by staff should be put in its place;
    3. Exhibit EX 1 C001C002 landscaping, demo plan 12/20, site landscape plan 12/20, parking retaining wall 12/20 with conditions, the plan 12/20, building elevations 12/20 and C003 be incorporated in this motion;
    4. If a guardrail is required by our city engineer, that it shall be post and wire type;
    5. The open space must meet a minimum of 20%;
    6. The retaining wall shall be finished with form inserts and a finish approved by staff;
    7. Color pallet shall be submitted and be in conformity with the existing site;
    8. Construction schedule shall be submitted and incorporated;
    9. Ms. McBrideís recommendations for outdoor storage and display be incorporated with the exception that sidewalk sales shall be permitted;
    10. All lighting shall be downlit and nonglare type.

Mr. Galster asked if the changes to the outdoor display were a part of the covenants or a condition of approval. Mr. Okum responded it was intended to be part of the covenants for the entire PUD.

Mr. Okum said I need to add item 11 Ė that the covenants be reviewed and approved by our law director.

Mr. Darby said on the covenants, if in the future the applicant desired to seek a modification of the covenants to the extent they would present a plan to add another building, would that be possible? Mr. Syfert indicated that it would.

Mr. Huddleston seconded the motion.

Mr. Schuster said there is one issue outstanding, the percentage of open space on the site. Currently there is approximately 13.5%, and we will be increasing it .1-.3% with this improvement.

 

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V A FINAL PUD DEVELOPMENT PLAN Ė CASSINELLI SQUARE BUILDNG "D"

Mr. Schuster added that there is no way we can get to the 20% requirement and still make parking requirements. We havenít changed any of the open space from what it was originally.

Mr. Okum said Iím a little confused because I was here when we approved the original site, and I never recall approving a 13% open space on that site. Mr. Schuster responded we have not changed from the development plan that was approved in 1993-94. That was never an issue at that point in time.

Mr. McErlane reported that none of the documents we have include an open space calculation for the prior PUD plan. There are density calculations, which doesnít give you any indication of the green space. Mr. Okum said originally the building density was 27%. Mr. Schuster said that was all submitted at that time; nothing was ever asked about open space. Mr. Okum said so we are confusing open space with building density. Ms. McBride commented that was a bit of the problem, because the applicant, in reviewing prior submittals, has submitted building density, and we need open space because that is what our code now requires. Mr. Schuster and I did talk about it briefly and I suggested he bring that number forward to the commission and say this is what is out there today; this is what we will have post redevelopment. Mr. Schuster said currently it is approximately 13.5 or 13.6% and we will increase that by .1 to .3%. Instead of 13.5, it will be 13.6 or 13.7%.

Mr. Okum said I will withdraw the open space requirement from my motion, because if they were to come back in for Building H later on, I think we could work more on the open space issue.

Mr. Huddleston seconded the amended motion, adding that he would have no problem with Building H, subject to how the rest of the development is tenanted, and if it is done appropriately and you would come back for that, I donít necessarily think it would be inappropriate. The thing I would feel strongly about at that time is addressing the open space requirement. My point is I wouldnít want to turn down Building H to be bureaucratic, but I think it is important to get it clarified.

Voting aye were Mr. Okum, Mr. Huddleston, Mr. Darby, Mr. Galster, Mr. Vanover, Mr. Whitaker and Mr. Syfert. Approval was granted with seven affirmative votes.

  1. NEW BUSINESS
    1. Approval of Final Development Plan, Springdale Plaza

Paul Gugino said we took your comments and worked with the staff to address the issues. To review the project, we will be redeveloping the existing center, knocking down this quadrant and redeveloping it with three major anchors, DSW Shoe Warehouse, Circuit City and Bed Bath and Beyond. We also will add other retail; we are looking at a Panera Bread, perhaps a Kinko or Menís Wearhouse.

 

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Mr. Gugino said we will add 128 trees, with landscaping in the rear of the buildings. We have ample detention and parking and a lot of landscaping. He showed the building elevations with the color pallet.

We have agreed to decrease the signage on Bed Bath and Beyond to 324 s.f. and we also have proposed reducing the signage that would be visible from Michaelís.

The backs of the buildings are fully screened, and all the dumpsters are screened and gated.

We have been working with the city engineer on the traffic circulation in the rear and have developed a concrete island and redesigned the ingress-egress along the back. There was talk about a right turn lane, and we reviewed that thoroughly with the city engineer and the city planner and we have concluded to redesign the entryway into the center and increase the radiuses, widen the ingress-egress and add a lane for traffic movement and closed off and dead ended this area so traffic cannot get in and cause a problem with the movement of this traffic.

The pylon sign has been dropped down a few feet as requested, from 32í to 28í. The building signage for the retail shops will be harmonious and per code.

Mr. McErlane reported that the preliminary plan was approved by City Council last Wednesday, January 3rd. This plan deviates slightly from the preliminary plan. Primarily the left turn northbound on Tri-County Parkway into the site has been added. The loading area behind the Designer Shoe Warehouse and Bed Bath and Beyond have been reconfigured. The compactor locations have been put together, instead of being in separate locations as they were previously. Mr. Gugino added that it was basically a grading issue. Circuit City customer pickup area has been reconfigured; it did have three head in parking spaces and now it has a pull off area so traffic isnít backing out into the main aisle. The trees in the southernmost islands have been added as discussed in the last meeting. The pole sign height has been reduced from 30 to 28 feet, and the Bed Bath and Beyond front wall sign has been reduced to 324 square feet from 400. With the exception of that sign, the signs shown on the final plans submitted are basically the same as shown previously.

The covenants have been submitted since Planning has seen this, and they did include limitations on uses (no automobile service establishments, no drive through restaurants). There are limitations on outdoor sales, although the way it is worded, it says "tent sales, sidewalk sales or similar sales". We would suggest they delete the word similar and just say "tent sales and sidewalk sales as delineated in the Zoning Code". This is only because we get into that seasonal sale thing that runs four months a year and it is a nightmare to try to control. Mr. Gugino said I donít see any problem with taking it out.

 

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Mr. McErlane reported that the other item in the covenants are the references to plan dates and they are the preliminary and not the final darts, so that should be changed.

Ms. McBride reported that parking spaces required are 854 and they are proposing 988. Planning Commission talked about the 20% open space requirement, and this is a redevelopment and is significantly below that at this point of time. Their plan sheets give us two different numbers, and we need a number to nail down in terms of what we are going to be approving this evening. Sheet S-3 shows 15.95% open space and their landscape plan indicates 13.8%.

The ground sign remains 7 feet high and 62 s.f. The code only permits one sign, but staff has suggested, given the size, frontage and shape of this center that both of these signs be permitted.

For the on-building signage, the applicant is proposing 1781 s.f. for the anchor tenants (Circuit City, DSW Shoe Warehouse and Bed Bath & Beyond and Michaelís). That includes a reduction on the north elevation of Bed Bath and Beyond down to 324 s.f. Staff also recommended that because of the extremely reduced frontage of Michaelís on East Kemper Road, initially suggested that the sign be eliminated and understanding that they have lease requirements, suggested that it be reduced to the neighborhood of 70 s.f.

Staff report indicates that the applicant verbally agreed to reduce that sign to 70 s.f. There may have been a misunderstanding between the applicant and myself. We did have a meeting with them last week, and I understood that they could make that 70 s.f. if the 324 s.f. were acceptable. Since that time, I received a fax from them indicating that they are proposing a sign of 110 s.f. on that north elevation for Michaelís. That would be a reduction from 159 s.f. to 110 s.f. Iíll leave that up to the Commission as to what you want to do with that.

There are three trees on East Kemper, two maple and one ash and they need to be incorporated into the landscape plan. Some of the quantity of the plant material had been reduced on the revised submittal. That was prereconfiguration to address some of the city engineerís comments. Some of that plant material can be reincorporated in some of the new areas that will appear as a part of the reconfiguration of the parking areas, so that wouldnít be a consideration. The arborvitae has to go in at 5 feet.

They are proposing to put additional arbor Vida at the bottom of the slope for the truck docks. Circuit City will have their own truck dock and DSW and Bed Bath and Beyond will share a truck docking area. It is more appropriate to have the screening at the top of the slope rather than the bottom of the slope. Also they have shown landscaping to go in on East Kemper. The city is planning a lot of road improvements on East Kemper, and we would ask that the applicant and their landscape architect work with the city staff. We donít want to see them put material in that we will come in and rip out.

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Ms. McBride added that might mean some deviation from the landscape plan, so we would ask the Commission to give staff some latitude to accommodate the roadwork.

We still need to see the details on the building elevations. They have indicated that all the mechanical equipment will be screened from view, and we need to see how that will be accomplished.

Mr. Gugino said in the reconfiguration per staff recommendation, the parking lot will change somewhat and 10 more parking spaces will be removed. Also we will be adding more landscaping, making one island larger and adding two more islands.

On the open space calculation, the problem there is that the landscape plan didnít take into consideration the detention area, and we are at 16%.

We do not have a problem with incorporating the three trees on East Kemper into the landscape plan. Also, we have been working with the city all along on the roadway widening and we donít want to plant anything that would have to be ripped out either, so we would want the understanding that this would go in after your road widening.

On the screening of the HVAC, the buildingís parapets are high enough, due to the location of these units, that they will not be seen. If there were a situation, we certainly would address it. Mr. Syfert asked how high the parapets would be, and Mr. Gugino answered they would be roughly three feet.

Mr. Okum said there are four or five Colorado green spruce along Tri-County Parkway, and those five trees would be better planted at 8 foot instead of 6 foot to give a better screening of that truck bay along that side. Ms. McBride agreed. Mr. Gugino said that isnít a problem

Mr. Shvegzda reported that there was discussion prohibiting the left and through movement from the unsignalized drive out to Kemper Road. A raised island will be constructed to do that, but it needs to extend further to the south across the northern drive to that common drive in order to prohibit left turns. It is to be a right turn only drive.

On the south drive to Tri-County Parkway, we need clarification on how we transition between the two lanes in front of the store to the three lanes at the intersection. Mr. Huddleston had a concern regarding the alignment with Tri-County Parkway. We feel that can be mitigated through a larger radius on the north side.

Tri-County Parkway would be widened by 2-3 feet to create an 11-foot left turn lane northbound into the site, and we need detailed plans for that construction.

 

 

 

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Mr. Shvegzda added that on the north drive to Tri-County Parkway, there was an initial discussion of a right turn only lane into the site. With the applicant, we have looked at ways to modify the driveway itself in order to mitigate any problems with queuing of traffic trying to turn right into the site.

At the staff meeting, we looked at modifications to the driveway that would eliminate the parking lot intersecting drive aisles to a distance of approximately 175 feet from Tri-County Parkway. What is now indicated is that the intersecting drive aisles from the south have been blocked off to a distance of 125 feet from Tri-County Parkway, which we feel is acceptable. The drive on the right, or north remains in place, due to issues of circulation to the bank. We feel that the way the geometrics are now arranged, it would be sufficient that a car could efficiently make that turn and continue on to the bank without impeding traffic entering the site.

Another issue was to provide adequate left turn lanes. Now we have three lanes throughout that entire length of the main drive aisle, which would serve the intermediate parking lot drive aisles and the main drive aisle alongside the building itself.

Another area was the elimination of parking directly off the drive for a minimum of 175 feet from Tri-County Parkway. In discussions with the applicant, it was indicated that there are lease agreements with Michaelís that dictated numbers of parking within certain distances of their facility, and that this would cause problems. So, that has not taken place. The other issue was to create a 40-foot radius at the north radius to Tri-County Parkway, and that has been done.

The preference would have been for the elimination of all the parking directly off the drive, but based on the fact that it is a vast improvement over what is there now, and the consideration that those parking spaces should be used fairly infrequently, we feel that this is an acceptable arrangement.

For the new driveways on Tri-County Parkway, because they are in effect not going to have depressed curbs and drive aprons, they will be true intersections and we will need details on how that grading will take place to assure that we donít have drainage problems out on Tri-County Parkway.

On the storm water management, we are set on volume. There are still issues concerning some of the grading insofar as maintaining the access to the cityís storm sewer easement that runs along the cemetery property line. There are a couple of different ways to do that and we have discussed them with the applicant.

The final detailed storm sewer calculations to finalize the design are still necessary. There is a storm sewer carrying the site storm flow to the detention basin across Tri-County Parkway and we will need a license agreement for that. We also need sewer and water availability letters, and I know there are some issues with Cincinnati Water Works at this time.

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Mr. Okum said it appears that they are trying not to put that right turn lane in there. I can understand that they have some cuts and issues, but my concern is that six months from now we will say that awe wish we had that right turn lane in there. I am willing to allow that flexibility, but when we start having incidences of rear end collisions along southbound Tri-County Parkway, I have to find somebody accountable. I donít want anybody coming back to me and asking why we didnít have a right turn into that site. How many cars do you anticipate going into that site? Mr. Gugino answered we donít have a traffic study, but I would say the amount of right turn traffic coming into here would be primarily from Michaelís, and some of the shops, so we are not looking at a significant amount of traffic. Mr. Okum responded I disagree with you; I take the first driveway into the site.

Mr. Gugino added when we looked at this originally we talked about trip generation Ė what it is now and what it will be in the redevelopment. We tried to make some improvements and we are moving that entryway down. There are a lot more issues than you have been made aware of. There is a situation here and it is a huge issue. Mr. Okum commented I am just worried about safety. Mr. .Gugino said when we discussed this, it was weíll leave it this way and six months from now if there is a problem, weíll go back and fix it that way. We all said we should fix it now, because who would be accountable. What traffic group does who hire and who pay. We concluded that this would fix the problem. If you sit out there and watch this traffic, the bottleneck is only at the left-hand turn into the Loweís property. People get cockeyed in the street; it is awkward when they turn there. It is a PUD, with give and take and we have made an extreme effort, and a financial effort to make this be a beautiful center and I think it will work very well. I think this is more than a really good attempt to work with the situation as it is.

Mr. Okum responded I canít disagree with you. I can compliment you on all the efforts you have made. I still see someone getting rear ended there, and if that were to occur on a regular basis, something needs to be done about it, and that cost has to be borne by someone, whether it is by the developer or not. I think that this will be a primary entrance and will get most of your trip generation.

Mr. Gugino commented we have discussed some of this with the city planner and with the type of developer we have here, and with the city looking at doing some other things here, and with the problem with the Cincinnati Water Works, who wants to put a main transmission line down the center of that road and want us to bring in a new line. I have a development in Maryland and we had a center with traffic problems, and we hired a traffic engineer to look at it. If this developer saw that this was causing problems, especially of a dangerous nature, they would be first up to try to work with you to make an improvement there. I donít know how we can handle that tonight in this meeting.

 

 

 

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Mr. Okum said I have some notes in regard to that. If that were not to be constructed, the cost of the improvements would be bonded to be determined on an accident ratio evaluation six months after the redevelopment of the site. Hopefully it would never be needed, but if we have a high number of rear end collisions there, (one a month would be significant considering there are none there now), That cost would be protected and it would give you an opportunity and the city time to evaluate and you not to incur the cost of recutting the road, redoing the curb, rebuilding the roadway etc. He asked Mr. Shvegzda if that were a possibility.

Mr. Shvegzda asked if one accident a month would be what would trigger this. Mr. Okum answered that it would if it were a rear end collision. Mr. Syfert asked the base line..

Mr. Gugino commented I understand where you want to go here and I probably donít have a problem with where you are headed. When you say one a month, then you have to ask who is at fault Ė is it a rear end because we donít have a right hand turn or is it a rear end because the street is not wide enough to begin with, is it because some lady got cockeyed trying to go into Loweís and somebody tried to go around her and smashed her? That is where it would come back to something we discussed with the city engineer where if a situation does come up, we all have to agree to agree that we have to hire a non biased traffic consultant to look at the situation and come up with a solution.

I think there is some right of way issue there. Mr. Shvegzda reported that the right of way for what currently exists there has been dedicated. Maybe what we would consider is if a traffic study would show that there is an accident problem in the right turn lane, or a widening of some sort be required, maybe the right of way should be dedicated to provide the improvements.

Mr. Okum said this right turn lane is strictly for the applicantís benefit. For the city to pay for the right turn lane, even if the applicant dedicates the land, I think would be inappropriate. We have other developments in the community; why donít we pay for a right turn in lanes for them?

Mr. Gugino responded we have donated all this and done some things we did not have to do, but we want this to be a good-looking center. So to put the total burden on my client, Iím not sure is fair. I am sure I could convince the client to donate the right of way if necessary. If we can come to an agreement that within a period of time there is a situation where accidents are occurring that we all agree to hire somebody, say a traffic consultant, to determine what needs to be done and then we join the City in handling this. I donít want to see this thing set here and look like a dungeon until we work out the right of way. I donít think the trip generations will be that much more and also the locals know the back ways and will not fight the traffic up here. We also agreed to work with the City. The City wants to see it widened back here another 150 to 200 feet. Mr. Shvegzda added that this is to provide three lanes throughout the length of Tri-County Parkway.

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Mr. Gugino added what I am trying to show is the wonderful spirit of cooperation and I donít think it would be equitable to throw everything on the developer. Mr. Okum commented it should be equitable and fair; I canít disagree with that. I would certainly like to see that section of land set aside so that we donít have to deal with relocating trees and so forth.

Mr. Gugino commented no matter how you do it, if you come back in later and add a right hand turn, you will be relocating things. You will be moving sidewalks and trees, adding more landscaping, digging up the storm sewer and relocating it, moving the street light and a lot of regrading.

Mr. Okum said so you have analyzed what that would cost. Mr. Gugino said the City has analyzed it; we have worked with Mr. Osborn. They were talking about certain avenues being something rather than an arterial street.

Mr. Shvegzda reported that regarded the review for a right turn lane. Usually we look at that specifically for the arterials, not a secondary road, as Tri-County Parkway is.

Mr. Okum commented if that intersection wasnít so close to Kemper, I wouldnít have as much concern either, but where it is makes it difficult.

Mr. Shvegzda added that Kemper Road is a concern for the City. We have done a Corridor Study and are in phase 1 right now of widening Kemper Road to accommodate the projected traffic increase. That is between 747 and Tri-County Parkway.

Phase 2, which is anticipated to be constructed in 2002 is basically from the vicinity of Century Boulevard to Chesterdale. Phase 3, anticipated in 2005 is the area between Century Boulevard back to the west to Tri-County Parkway. At that point, we will reanalyze the intersection at Tri-County Parkway. It is conceivable that a double left westbound to Tri-County Parkway will be required, and additional widening to accommodate that would be required for a considerable length on Tri-County Parkway. Those are way in the future, but there is that possibility.

Mr. Galster wondered how much it would cost to add that right turn

lane. Mr. Gugino answered that it is over $100,000. Mr. Galster asked the value of the donation of the Kemper Road right of way for the expansion, and Mr. Gugino stated that it is $110,000. Mr. Shvegzda added that is the appraised value.

Mr. Vanover said I agree with Mr. Okum in that at least for the time being, that first entranceway will be the main point of entrance. If you watch them come in there, and the way the traffic parking is set up on that end, it becomes a pull in rather than perpendicular. What would we gain if we continued that berm one more parking lane on the southern side so they would have to be well over halfway into that site. They would not gain anything by cutting through, and it might force them to go on up.

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Mr. Gugino said everyone here has agreements with the developer, and every time you try to change something it has an impact. I donít think that would amount to a thing. You are pushing a throat into an internal circulation. We have added stop signs and stop bars; we have added circulation lanes. I donít think pushing these people up will accomplish anything. There is quite a safety issue there now; it is pretty scary.

Mr. Vanover commented there have been a lot more incidents on the development side of it, but because that is private property the polices arenít involved unless there is personal injury. I understand you canít change A without some dominos falling and Iíll publicly state that I appreciate everything you have done.

Mr. Shvegzda said the arrangement that is there now with the reversible left turn lane is there because of the offset driveways. That will be eliminated, and you will have dedicated separate left turn lanes for each direction. To add that intersection will help tremendously.

On your question about forcing people to not use this entrance because it is a longer distance, the problem is it is very hard to judge why people perceive something as being the shortest distance to a destination. I donít know if that will ever stop them from seeing that first drive and thinking it as the shortest way to get there.

Mr. Huddleston said the applicant has donated a significant strip of land along Kemper. Did I understand that they are considering donating land in the radius of Tri-County Parkway? Mr. Shvegzda answered no, that concerned working with the applicant in some manner for the actual construction for some additional widening to provide a third lane throughout. No additional right of way is required there. Mr. Huddleston wondered what the applicant would participate in, and Mr. Shvegzda answered that either the preparation of plans or those types of things. Mr. Huddleston said if in the event that our 2004-2005 study determines that we need additional land there, is it reasonable that we could dedicate 12 or 15 feet of easement along there and give them permanent use of that if or until such time that we declared we needed that. The City could then at their cost make improvements to soften the parking areas without the applicant losing parking?

Mr. Shvegzda responded that could be utilized in order to mitigate the loss of parking through there. There might be some necessitated work on the driveways because of that work, but the parking lot could be secure. For the additional lane, we would need 11 feet minimum.

Addressing the applicant, Mr. Huddleston said I wonder if you could dedicate that land with a permanent easement back to the point that you wouldnít lose parking if in the event the City makes whatever improvements the City chooses to make in 2004 or 2005, at their expense. That would again mitigate the lane problem and soften the area with landscaping or ornamental stonework as they choose.

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Mr. Gugino commented in an arrangement like that it is financed, and we would have to make sure that something is worded that wouldnít kill the bank. It would be handled between our legal and your legal.

Mr. Huddleston responded my point would be that I think the City would guarantee that you wouldnít lose parking, and we would have the space available in the event that we would need to make an improvement there. At that time we would have to worry about how we would fund it. You already have donated the additional right of way on Kemper Road.

Mr. Shvegzda added one other method to try to mitigate any problems with the lender would be to utilize an easement so that you still own the land but have given up certain rights. Mr. Gugino responded Iím not saying that it canít happen; Iím just saying we canít make an arbitrary statement.

Mr. Huddleston said hopefully that would get it out of your area of responsibility, leaving your development with the parking ratios intact and give us the option to do what we need to do at a later date, if we need to do it. Mr. Gugino said I think that is a workable solution.

Mr. Galster said originally there was a debate as to which entrance would be used. If you go to the second page of their submittal and the way the parking was set up, the reason we went in that way was because once you got in there you couldnít get to a parking place. There was a curb that went all the way across the front of the building, and you had to go all the way back around to find a parking space. It was badly done, but now that it is changed, it will become more used.

Mr. Gugino said with all the changes, there is a clear movement throughout and you can see the entryway and how it will work, which you canít do now. Mr. Galster commented my biggest concern is the amount of grading that happens at the northernmost entrance. Right now when you are coming in and out, everybody hits their front and rear bumpers coming in and out of that lot. Mr. Gugino answered there will be a depressed curb and a 4-Ĺ% grade, which is reasonable for a driveway, so it will be very smooth and easy. Mr. Galster added I think that is the major problem coming in and out of that entrance.

Mr. Okum said Mr. Shvegzda indicated that it would be an intersection and not a depressed curb. I want to make sure we are clear on that. Depressed curb is significantly different than an intersection. Mr. Shvegzda added what is across at Loweís regular intersection is what the City wishes. Mr. Gugino said that is no problem.

Mr. Okum said I have some concerns about cars backing out into that flow of traffic on the north drive. Mr. Shvegzda answered that is always a concern. Those will be used very infrequently. The same situation exists on Tri-County Mallís ring road, which is a four-lane affair by the garage along the railroad tracks.

 

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Mr. Okum said our family goes to Michaelís and uses that first eight to 10 parking spaces and I see people parking there as well. You are over your parking numbers. Mr. Gugino responded we have some pretty good users here too; Panera Bread will be a user, plus you have a bus station there. Mr. Okum said they park on the backside of the bank. Mr. Gugino added with the widening, some of those spaces wonít be as deep along there. Are you asking us to eliminate all the parking here? Mr. Okum said I am suggesting shifting them. Mr. Gugino commented you shift one, you shift them all. Mr. Okum added that is my only concern, their backing out into that entrance lane, which we wouldnít have on a plan normally.

Ms. McBride said I agree; if the center was coming in and it was new, would I welcome that Ė no. But this is an existing center with a number of lease constraints and existing circulation problems. Itís not ideal; thereís no question about that, but at the same time we have to look at the best guess on the whole site.

Mr. Okum said so you are saying it is not a perfect situation and you take your risks if you want to park there. Ms. McBride answered itís not perfect, but it is an overall huge improvement over what is there today, both from a safety, aesthetic and economic standpoint, and we have to weigh those things.

Mr. Okum commented there are no other comments from the Commission, so I guess we donít mind cars backing out into that. Mr. Syfert said it is not a perfect world, but it is a matter of education. People arenít going to back out into that traffic. They are going to pull up into the second one and go out the other way. You'll have very few people backing out into it.

Mr. Gugino said I think the bottom line is what is reasonable and what is practical and how much of an improvement there is. It is more than losing parking spaces. You have a lease with agreements; this is their parking field; it is defined. We donít want to reconfigure this, because we basically canít. Mr. Okum said I can accept that.

Mr. Okum said let me make sure that I understand that the applicant is willing to commit to the dedication of 12-foot right of way along the east side of Tri-County Parkway. Mr. Gugino

responded we would have to define the length of that. Mr. Huddleston said it would be to the south driveway and we would state in there that in no way would that interfere with your future parking. Mr. Gugino confirmed this.

Mr. Okum moved to approve the final plan for the Springdale Plaza with:

    1. The inclusion of staff comments;
    2. If necessary, screening of mechanical units viewed from the public right of way shall be applied;
    3. The overhead doors on the south side of the building shall be painted as submitted;
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    5. The north entrance and parking field as presented on the submission this evening be incorporated;
    6. The covenants and restrictions be reviewed by our city law director and approved;
    7. The applicant has agreed to dedicate 12 feet of right of way from Kemper Road to the south entrance of the development for future road expansion if necessary;
    8. That the applicantís parking along that area shall be maintained at the cost of the city if necessary.
    9. Ms. McBride asked if he wanted to include signage, because right now the signage that is proposed for Michaelís contains 159 s.f. sign on the north elevation. Mr. Okum said they have agreed to go down to 110 s.f. I will add to my motion:

    10. That the adjustment to the signage of Michaelís be accepted at 110 s.f. as submitted;
    11. That all lights shall be downlit, non-glare type, cut off fixtures and all light packs on buildings shall be downlit only with non-glare.

Mr. Whitaker seconded the motion.

Mr. Huddleston said for clarification, I would ask if the applicant is okay with the idea that they would have to work with the law director with the understanding that any improvement that the city would make in the future with that 12 foot dedicated strip would not impede your operation of the center, so they donít have problems with their mortgages coming down the road. As long as our law director can work with them on that language, I think that is appropriate. Mr. Gugino indicated that they would work with him.

Voting aye were Mr. Okum, Mr. Whitaker, Mr. Darby, Mr. Galster, Mr. Huddleston, Mr. Vanover and Mr. Syfert. Approval was granted with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Okum asked their time frame, and Mr. Gugino answered that he hopes to be able to start demolishing in about two weeks, and we hope to see the center open for business by the end of August. Circuit City will be open about a month later, because they develop and build their own building.

B. Concept Plan Discussion Ė Proposed Medical Office Building 11350 Springfield Pike

David Cawdrey of Cline Realtors stated that Springdale-Mason Pediatric Group is a group of seven pediatricians and four nurse practitioners who have been in Springdale for 25 years. We have a parcel of the Sterling House lot under contract, and we are here to ask your input and guidance for the development of our site.

Staff was very quick to respond to our drawings, and I very much appreciate it. We submitted drawings and within 3 days we had constructive comments. I would like to ask questions that would help us in the development of the site.

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Mr. Cawdrey added we are trying to develop a maximum 11,500 s.f. medical office building; in fact, we probably would reduce the size. It is one story, and we have exceeded the parking requirements.

Tom Toensmeyer of Toensmeyer Architects and Brenda Mersch, the Business Manager for Springdale-Mason Pediatrics are here to answer questions.

There is a cross easement from the existing Sterling House facility through our proposed parking lot, and one of the things we are concerned about is the traffic coming through their parking lot. That would be a significant safety issue.

Another question would be concerning setbacks. We complied with the 50 foot setback and the 100 foot setback in the front of the building, and the 35 foot setback to the rear of the property but at the request of the seller The Alterra Corporation, we have tried to address their concern for the impact of any traffic and headlights into their facility. So, we have positioned the building in front of our parking to lessen the impact of headlights of cars driving into our facility.

The other comments that the staff has made are very easy for us to address, but the two big questions we have are the cross easement and the 12-foot setback versus the 50-foot setback. If we had to comply with the 50-foot setback from the Sterling House parking lot and our building, I donít think we would have a site that would be usable.

Ms. McBride reported that the property is zoned OB, Office Building, and is within Subarea D of the Corridor Review District. As such, both professional offices and medical offices are permitted within this district.

Because they are in the Route 4 Corridor District, we have tried t o inform the applicant of some of the information needed with the next submittal, like building design, color, material standards and so forth.

They do meet the 50-foot parking setback as well as the 100-foot building setback required in the Corridor District, and the 35-foot rear yard setback required for the OB District. ON the side yard, there is a 12-foot sideyard required if it was a non-residential use. There is a 50-foot sideyard required if it is residential. Obviously, the residents of Alterra live there, so itís not like a motel or something more transient. In my opinion, it is a residential use, but I also think the City has the ability at the very least to recommend approval of a variance on that. I am not suggesting that it is not appropriate for that building to be 12 feet off the property line, but what I am saying is that from a technical standpoint we need to make a decision as to if that use is a residential use and if so, make a recommendation that a variance be obtained and hopefully be approved by the BZA.

 

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Ms. McBride said I also made suggestions to the applicant regarding landscaping plan, sign plan and a lighting plan. They indicated a ground mount sign, which is required by the Corridor Review District, and there are specific references to the lighting plan in the Corridor Review District. Weíll need to see details on the waste enclosure. A sidewalk needs to be provided along Springfield Pike.

Then there is the issue of the access drive. As it is currently configured, I donít think it is an attractive benefit to either the applicantís property or how it functions from a traffic standpoint. We would rather see it reconfigured and incorporated within their parking field. We donít think that it will see an awful lot of traffic given that The Alterra is an exceptionally low trip generator. The ones that will be using that would be those going north on Springfield Pike. To run an entire frontage road in front of their parking area doesnít make sense.

They are overparked by our code. We require 47 spaces if it is professional and 59 if it is medical, and they have 86 spaces. They will lose a number of those spaces because they have got them striped at 8í x 18í and we require 9í x 19í. In the Corridor District, parking lots are required to be located in the side or rear yard unless a hardship is proven. So the applicant needs to present to this commission the hardship due to the shape of the site, the number of easements crossing the site and so forth, that it is feasible to put parking in the front and that it does meet the 50 foot setback requirement and has been approved for adjacent uses.

Mr. Cawdrey said as part of our contract to purchase, we wanted to submit a site plan to Alterra for their approval and review. They have contacted me and indicated to me that they are quite pleased with the way we have located the building on the site. At this point, Alterra is not even interested in having that cross easement. They donít see a need to have ingress and egress through our parking lot. I understand maybe some of the discussion is due to the fact that there was a traffic light contemplated at the access road, which is what we propose to use as our main ingress-egress from Springfield Pike. I understand that it may or may not be there; is that correct?

Ms. McBride answered it wasnít Alterraís idea to have the cross access easement; it was the Cityís idea. The reason was because one of the other goals of the corridor study is to try to consolidate curb cuts and provide as much cross easement as possible.

Mr. Cawdrey said our understanding is that we have the right for an additional curb cut. Instead of asking for it, we would use the existing easement on the north side of the property.

Ms. McBride responded it is my understanding that the area on your site plan is one parcel if it was to be separated from Alterra. Mr. Cawdrey indicated that Lot #2 is 2.14 acres, The Alterra location is 2.6 acres and the City of Springdale uses this access road to access their site, which is 1.3-1.4 acres.

 

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Ms. McBride said so the access drive going back to the Cityís facilities is actually on your property, and that property is entitled to access in some form. It can be restricted, right in and right out only and is only entitled to what we are required to provide, one point of access per parcel. Mr. Cawdrey said so are you saying we would or would not have the right to a curb cut? Ms. McBride answered you have a curb cut now on your property.

Mr. Cawdrey said it looks like there was another curb cut here at one time. Ms. McBride responded I believe it is there and is to go away when the access drive is put in. When the property to the north of Alterra was developed, that was to go away, and I think your plans indicate that.

Mr. Cawdrey stated our plans contemplated having an access drive that would come in front of the parking, because safety is a tremendous issue here. Not only will seven pediatricians and four pediatric nurse practitioners, also two pediatric dentists share this site and this building. You can imagine the number of children with families.

Ms. McBride answered I understand, but you have to look at the number of trips that will be generated by Sterling House. It is an exceptionally low traffic generator, and the distribution of that limited traffic of what would use that access drive. The other item is we have a 30% open space requirement in this district, and I donít know how you are going to do that with the impervious surface ratio you are showing on this concept plan.

Mr. Cawdrey responded I think that we will have to reduce the size of the building and reduce the size of the parking lot. We have tried to develop 7.4 parking spaces per 1,000 s.f. which exceeds the parking requirements. Maybe we should let Mr. Shvegzda tell us whether or not there is any way around this issue of having cross access, because that really will have a negative impact.

Mr. Shvegzda stated that part of the goals under the Route 4 Corridor, to provide cross access and was part of the whole intent when the Sterling House plan was approved. As far as plans for a traffic signal, there is no set plan for a traffic signal at this time. It probably is not warranted, based on the traffic. The intent was that if those sites would ever have an opportunity to have access via a signalized intersection, that would be the only chance. That would be an option at a future date.

Mr. Galster suggested moving the entrance up in line with the parking coming out to Route 4. So, if every once in a while an elderly person did need to leave by that way, which is highly unlikely, they would be going in a straight line. Then you would have all your parking, which will be mostly used by your patients in the back where your door is.

 

 

 

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VI B PROPOSED MEDICAL OFFICE BUILDING 11350 SPRINGFIELD PIKE

Mr. Cawdrey said I think those are good suggestions. The way this was designed was to create a drop off zone, and that is why the entrance into the parking lot is planned to be more in line with the front door of the building.

Mr. Galster said I understand that, but I donít know that I would use a drop off zone if I was taking my kid to the doctor, because I am usually going in the middle of the day when my wife is at work. Mr. Cawdrey responded you have mixed use; you have one parent coming with the child and some with someone else and being dropped off.

Mr. Cawdrey said my thought would be that the recommendation by staff was to eliminate any parking in the front yard, so we would lose those parking spaces anyway.

Mr. Galster answered we would prefer not to have it in the front of the building, but based on the shape of your lot, itís either that or to have a building all the way up at Route 4 and encroach on that easement. While the intent is to eliminate parking in the front, there are ways to buffer and screen that to make it workable. An access drive in front of that just adds another 30 feet of concrete.

Mr. Okum said I tend to agree with you on the parking in front. How wide is the road that the City put in there? Mr. Shvegzda answered it is about 22 feet, just what was necessary for two lanes.

Mr. Okum said I donít particularly like all the parking across the front along Route 4. On the other hand, I think the building will need to be a little smaller. If I run a straight edge across the mass of Sterling House, and take a medium of depth off the roadway, you will be dropping your building back a good 14 or 15 feet. I am not excited about the back of the building against the Sterling House parking lot, but on the other hand it seems like the practical application. I think it would be very difficult to give it some type of appearance other than the backside of the building. Frankly, that is what people coming up north on Route 4 will see, the whole back side of the building. That is something we will evaluate as Planning Commission and then it will go to the Board of Zoning Appeals for the setback variance if necessary.

I guess you could do mounding and shrubbery along that area across the front. I have some concerns about their clientele going into Sterling Houseís parking lot by accident and having to come back out on Route 4 to get into the right lot. Fortunately they would be turning right but the purpose was to incorporate the site with a common access point.

Mr. Huddleston said on the cross easement driveway from Sterling House, my guess is that there probably arenít 10 trips a day generated through that area, which should ease your clientís mind. Iíd like to see that common drive across there to eliminate the curb cuts and give us a safer situation. As a tradeoff for some of the density you are looking for on the site, that is probably a good way to get it.

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VI B PROPOSED MEDICAL OFFICE BUILDING 11350 SPRINGFIELD PIKE

Mr. Huddleston said I would see a great deal of concern with the kind of elevations you develop here, for northbound traffic on Springfield Pike, and for what Sterling House has to look at. You are looking for a high-density building and higher density parking. I assume your clients feel they need that or you wouldnít be requesting it. If you want the building density that generates that parking density, I think it is a legitimate tradeoff to come up there with that front yard easement. Again, you will have to look at some of those circulation patterns. Iíll leave it up to the engineers and your client to work out those things, but I certainly would like to see as an end result to greatly soften that whole appearance along the corridor.

Mr. Shvegzda said we have discussed the cross access issue. Depending on how this works out in terms of the total access between the sites, the south drive to Sterling House isnít an enter only. It may be advantageous to have the one driveway that is shown to be removed remain as an exit only, but it depends on how the whole site works out in terms of circulation.

On the detention basin, there are three proposed detention areas; there is one out front towards Route 4, one to the rear and a detention swale parallel to the common access drive that exists back to the Public Works facility. It is questionable as to the amount of volume that can be developed in the detention area along the common access drive, because it is only about five foot wide as the plans indicate right now. We will need the details on how the detention basin functions and what is actually required as far as volume. As the site currently exists, everything drains back to a culvert type entrance at the far east end of the site that runs underneath the Public Works facility. It all has to get to that point to maintain the current drainage patterns.

Mr. McErlane stated Ms. McBride has covered most of my comments. I indicated that I did not have a problem with the setback to the south property line, but I wasnít viewing it as a residential use, and realistically it is a residential use. From the standpoint of how it impacts the property to the south, I donít feel it negatively impacts it.

There are some specific landscaping requirements within the Corridor District D as to what must occur in the front yard. There are a few deviations from that, but it can be worked out with the final plan.

I had pulled the original meeting minutes from 1997 when Sterling House was approved, and a lot of the concern was relative to the cross access easement. The Corridor District encourages cross access easements between properties but a lot of the concerns were the number of curb cuts along Springfield Pike. One of the considerations that was trying to be accomplished in this cross access easement was a shared access easement at the property line between the two properties. The other concern and consideration made by Planning and the staff was that there wouldnít be any other curb cuts besides that one and the one the City was building as part of the access to the salt dome.

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VI B PROPOSED MEDICAL OFFICE BUILDING 11350 SPRINGFIELD PIKE

Mr. McErlane added I am not really sure if the intent was to get access across the property, as much as it was to share the access and get circulation back and forth, not necessarily traffic through the property to the other driveway.

Mr. Cawdrey said so perhaps instead of abandoning this curb cut it could be a shared access. That certainly would be more acceptable for our use.

Mr. Syfert asked if the members remembered that being our thinking at that time, and Mr. Okum answered I truly recall the splitting of the properties and a central access point being a big part of the discussion.

I never thought of the Cityís access as an access into that site, but it certainly is a decent access point for this development. I donít think we had made a final agreement on that access. Mr. McErlane responded I donít think the City had purchased the property yet; there were considerations for the City to purchase it, so there were plans that there would be access off it, but nothing was finalized.

Mr. Cawdrey said Iíd like to review your comments to make sure I have the right information. . We would need to go before the Board of Zoning Appeals and apply for a variance for the south property line (12í vs. 50í). We also would need a variance if we wanted to have any parking in the front yard. Ms. McBride responded that does not require a variance; that is something that this commission can grant, provided you set forth the hardship that would exist. Mr. Cawdrey said there is a possibility of making this a shared access, which has a great deal of merit, because it alleviates my clientís concern about cross traffic. I also think that moving the entrance to the parking lot makes sense. We certainly will comply with all the other recommendations, which were very helpful.

Mr. Syfert said if you were to use a shared access, would that change the thinking of moving that building a different way? Mr. Cawdrey answered I think it could. Having the two means of ingress and egress will be a big help. That will alleviate some of the traffic and cross traffic concerns. We are going to reduce the size of the building, perhaps by 30%. We also will then reduce the amount of parking that we will require. Do I understand that we still need to comply with a 30% open space requirement? Ms. McBride responded that is the requirement of the Zoning Code. Mr. Cawdrey continued and could we ask this body for a reduction? Ms. McBride answered that would be a variance from the Board of Zoning Appeals.

Mr. Huddleston added that the dumpsters would need to be screened on all four sides and gated particularly since that is by The Sterling House.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  1. DISCUSSION
  2. Ms. McBride said it is January, so that means the annual Planning and Zoning Workshop. I hope you all got your information and will attend.

    I think the commission needs to start talking about and thinking about is the tree preservation issue, and the fact that we donít have anything governing redevelopment projects. WE will be stung on that again and again.

    Mr. Galster said redevelopment should be 100% replanting. If you keep redeveloping, eventually you wouldnít have to have a tree. Springboro has a booklet on tree preservation, and there is something in there on redevelopment. We wouldnít want to take it verbatim, but it may be a starting point. There are other items that we have in our office so we can pull something together and do some kind of memo that would be an addendum for the commission next month.

    Mr. Galster said there is no need to lose these trees in redeveloping. Ms. McBride said so we need to provide the verbiage and definitions and those kinds of things. Weíll come up with a memo next month for your review.

    Mr. Okum said it would help if we had exhibits marked to reference in our motions. That way when it goes to Council, those exhibits are the same. Mr. McErlane said the plans submitted to Council are labeled as exhibits. We can certainly do that for the Commission.

    Mr. Okum reported that at the last Board of Zoning Appeals meeting, we had an application for a variance for banners on the Art Institute of Cincinnati. The applicant did a fairly decent job of convincing us that they were truly signs and not banners. She was turned down on the request for banners and subsequently got a building permit for signs.

    Right now, you canít have your identity symbol on your business. You are allowed to have the United States flag and the State of Ohio flag only. I think we need to visit that. Interpretation of the differences between a banner and a sign becomes very complicated.

    Mr. McErlane reported that what the applicant had submitted originally lacked enough detail to tell what it was. Based on the fact they indicated it was a fabric type material, we said it was a banner. They didnít indicate how they were fastened or anything of that nature. By the time we were done, they were rigidly fastened, top and bottom and we issued a permit for it.

    Mr. Okum said so banners like that are considered signs. Then we have to consider how our zoning is structured for signage, when it comes to corporate identification symbols.

     

     

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    VII DISCUSSION - continued

    Ms. McBride added then you have to go a step further and say when does the American flag become a corporate symbol. Mr. McErlane said we already exempt those. The City of Fairfield used to have a requirement that you couldnít put temporary banners up after a 30-day grand opening period, and they were the most patriotic car dealers on the strip. They found out they could use the American flag, and put it on every antenna of every car on the lot. You have to draw the line somewhere.

    I talked with Mr. Osborn, and he thinks we should consider allowing corporate flags. However, we would clearly have to define how many, what size, and what they can contain on them.

    Mr. Darby said there is standard flag etiquette that would address that, but I do think we should reconsider the prohibition against corporate logo flags. It is their identity. I am sure that was put in there for good purpose at some point in time, but if we are looking at being corporate friendly, those that have the corporate flags should be given the right to use them judiciously.

    Ms. McBride will bring in something for the Commission to review.

  3. CHAIRMANíS REPORT
    1. Art Institute of Cincinnati Ė 1171 East Kemper Road Ė Signs

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

Mr. Vanover moved to adjourn and Mr. Darby seconded the motion. By voice vote, all voted aye, and the Planning Commission adjourned at 10:12 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

____________________,2001 __________________________

William G. Syfert, Chairman

 

 

_____________________,2001 __________________________

David Whitaker, Secretary