Planning Commission Meeting Minutes
8 May 2007
7:00 p.m.


I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Chairman William G. Syfert.

II. ROLL CALL

Members Present:        Steve Galster, Tony Butrum, Bob Diehl
                Lawrence Hawkins, David Okum, Tom
                Vanover and Chairman Syfert.

Others Present:        Doyle H. Webster, Mayor
                Jeff Tulloch, Economic Development Director
                Bill McErlane, Building Official
                Pat Madl, Engineer
                Anne McBride, City Planner

III. MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF 13 MARCH 2007

Mr. Galster moved to approve the Minutes and Mr. Butrum seconded the motion. By voice vote all voted aye, and the Minutes were approved unanimously.

IV. CORRESPONDENCE

A. Report on Council

Mr. Galster reported that at the last Council meeting was the public hearing for electronic interstate signs which was approved unanimously.
B. Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes – 20 February 2007
C. Zoning Bulletin – March 1, 2007
D. Zoning Bulletin – March 15, 2007
E. Zoning Bulletin – April 1, 2007
F. Revision to Zoning Code – Electronic Highway Signs – Section 153.534

V. OLD BUSINESS


VI. NEW BUSINESS

A. Approval of Development Plan for Sam’s Club Vestibule Renovation, 800 Kemper Commons Circle

Nick Miller and Candice Briere approached the commission. Mr. Miller passed out the material board, which they received this morning.

We are in agreement with the considerations of the May 4th review letter. Throughout the country Sam’s Club is looking at some of the stores to give them a facelift and Springdale is one of the sites. The exterior would consist of a new entry vestibule and customer pickup canopy. During construction they will create a new temporary opening to the north and left of the existing entry vestibule, tear down the old one and build a new one.

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VI A SAM’S CLUB VESTIBULE RENOVATION – 800 KEMPER COMMONS

Mr. Miller said also under consideration is the pallet storage area on the northeast corner of the building. We are proposing a wall to provide an area that gives a three-sided space to store the material. We also agree to have some kind of fence to finish that enclosure. I just need some guidance as to what the commission would like. There are also several interior finish remodels.

Mr. McErlane reported that we are asking that should Planning approve this we get corrected owners affidavits. This property is held under one name and the building is held under another.

The drawings are drawn in a stepwise progression based on this occurring after the Wal-Mart development. There is a future existing conditions drawing which is the Wal-Mart plan and they show their plan as a progression beyond that. I doubt that the schedule will allow for Wal-Mart to complete their work before Sam’s starts their site work. The end result will be the same, but we will be asking for drawings that reflect what is going to be built at the time it is going to be built. That is reflected not only in grading and utility plans, but also in the landscaping plan.

Ms. McBride reported that the parking spaces are required at a ratio of five per 1,000, and they are close to that. Once Wal-Mart and Sam’s are expanded they will be a little over four per thousand. Under the PUD Planning can alter that requirement. This is located in a center with cross parking available so I feel comfortable with the 4.13.

We had required gates to be added to that pallet and bale storage area. The height will be 10 feet and the material will be stored within one foot of the top of it so it should not be visible.

On the loading canopy, the proposed columns are steel and we have asked that they be brick painted to match the rest of the building.

On the landscaping, a lot of the material is proposed to be relocated but they are not sure where it will be stored while it is being relocated. Staff has come concern about the viability of what is to be relocated and if it does not survive it will need to be replaced in kind in terms of size and type of plant material.

From the approved 2000 landscaping plan, a lot of that plant material has died and never been replaced or is in very poor condition and needs to be replaced. The applicant has indicated that they are willing to do that and will work with us.

They are significantly under what they are allowed in terms of signage. They are allowed 661 s.f. and they are proposing 333 including the panel on the free standing sign.

On the lighting there is no change to what you have approved for the Wal-Mart. The fixtures are 42 feet, and that is what they are proposing on the front of Sam’s. They are not making changes to the side or to the rear and meet all the light levels.

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VI A SAM’S CLUB VESTIBULE RENOVATION – 800 KEMPER COMMONS

Mr. Madl reported that they are proposing to realign the drive off Olde Commons Drive so that the main drive aisle is further to the west to facilitate the expansion in front of the building. From a conceptual standpoint we are okay with that but we will need more detailed horizontal and vertical design work done. I think we can work out these details.

Storm water is to be controlled from the Wal-Mart plans. If the sequence of construction changes, we will need some additional information, in particular as it relates to any kind of detour required on Olde Commons Drive.

Mr. Okum said they have changed the drive aisle configuration to two-way. What is the width of the drive aisles? Mr. McErlane reported that the standard is 24 feet, and Mr. Madl added that they meet that standard.

Mr. Okum said currently on the south side of the building all the over storage of carts are placed in view of everybody coming into the store. Typically we don’t allow that; will this be resolved? Mr. Miller reported that there is a new cart storage area provided to handle that.

Mr. Okum said I want to make sure that the cart corrals will be non-covered. Mr. Miller confirmed this.

Mr. Galster asked if the striping in front of the new vestibule would be on the roadway. Mr. Miller answered said there will be pavement marked to meet the ADA code.

Mr. Okum moved to approve the development plan for Sam’s Club to include all staff comments and recommendations. Also the cart corrals will be without covers or canopies as indicated by the applicant. Mr. Butrum seconded the motion. All voted aye, and the approval was granted unanimously.

B.    Approval of Sign facing Princeton Pike – AT&T/Cingular Wireless, 11711 Princeton Pike

Mr. Vanover said I am a Cingular customer and if deemed necessary, I would excuse myself from this discussion. No one had a problem with that and he will participate in the discussion.

Jessica Peluso and Jeff Rouse of AT&T approached the commission members. Ms. Peluso reported they want an extra sign on the exterior facing Princeton Pike due to lack of visibility for our store when you are driving down Princeton Pike

Currently we have 36 square feet, and we are allowed to have 130 s.f. so an extra sign would be within the allotted maximum square footage.

The building adjacent to us is Jared Jewelers and they have moved the building 10 to 12 feet closer to Princeton Pike and taken away visibility.

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VI B AT&T/CINGULAR WIRELESS SIGN – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE

Mr. Rouse added that is my store, and I take the calls daily asking where we are located. Since Jared’s went up, it has been more challenging for customers to find my store. Our traffic has decreased and I do believe that with signs on the back of the building, it would make my store a lot more visible and people would have a clear idea of where my location is.

Mr. McErlane reported that the applicant is requesting a 3’-4 1/8” x 10’-1 7/8” wall sign on the east side of the building. The code directs that you have to have frontage to place a sign, and they don’t have frontage on the east side of the building, and the location is a wall of the Pro Vision space.

With the application there is an indication that there might be another sign requested and since we don’t have details so we recommend that Planning not consider that additional sign.

We didn’t get any information on any additional signs intended to be placed on the north and west sides of the building. In the previous package, all three signs are approximately the same size. What they are proposing for the other faces of the building is 68 s.f. so this would take them to 102 s.f. total and they are permitted to have 127 s.f.

Most of the members were on this board in 2005 when the landlord remade a similar request which was denied.

Ms. McBride said I have nothing to add except for the fact that it is an issue for Planning Commission about the frontage required for signage and whether we want to be consistent about this or not.

Mr. Galster said I continue to have a problem with the signage being attached to what is basically another tenant space. I do understand your dilemma, and there is a Princeton Plaza entrance sign mounted so that the southbound traffic can see it just past the entryway that goes down between the jewelers and Pearl Vision. I am not opposed to coming up with some kind of entrance sign that would have AT&T or something like that on it. However, the idea of putting a sign on a space that you don’t have is a fundamental problem. I want to see you have a successful business and I wouldn’t be opposed to your getting some identification at that entrance. It wouldn’t be huge but it would let people know that this is the entrance for your establishment.

Mr. Okum said establishing this precedent would be a problem, and I would like to reference the wing wall on the photo provided to us. I would think that wing wall being attached to the Cingular space could possibly be an exposure they could put their name on above that archway and they would have some exposure. It looks like their space. Mr. Miller said it is.

Ms. McBride commented I do not know if it would do the applicant much good. My concern is that you would be on it and miss the entryway in. I like Mr. Galster’s idea of a small ground mounted sign to give the driver enough notice to make this right turn in.

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VI B AT&T/CINGULAR WIRELESS SIGN – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE

Mr.Okum commented that might be the answer for more than one tenant.

Mr. Gilhart owner of the center said I like the idea because you cannot look back towards Cingular to see a sign. That sign is already there and If they were to take it and leave it exactly as it is, I would have no problem with them changing it to a white background with AT&T and a little logo. If the city agrees with this, I agree with it. We will continue looking at the signage on an overall basis for the center, but in the meantime, we did do Cingular an injustice by moving the building forward.

Mr. Galster said I think replacing the face of the sign is okay on a temporary basis. I would like to upgrade it a little bit more but we can look at that at some future date. This would be a short-term solution.

Mr. Syfert asked the applicant if they wished to withdraw their request. They indicated they would and the application was withdrawn.

C.    Approval of Façade Change – David’s Bridal, 720Kemper Commons Circle

Donald Kiley of K & A Architecture said I am here on behalf of Kimco Realty who owns this property. This is a tenant shift within the center. They are relocating and are asking for more visibility and an update on the side of the building.

We include some color photos and we are matching the split face block on the building and adding EIFS (showed color samples),

Mr. McErlane reported that they are proposing to renovate the existing façade of the former Shoe Carnival space and relocate their store to another space in the same development. The existing store is 85 feet wide and approximately 10,000 square feet and the new location will be 100 feet wide and 12,000 s.f.

The drawings indicate projecting pilasters flanking the entrance and extending the parapet over the entrance which will be approximately 11 feet higher than it currently is. Two different shades of gray are proposed. At this point we have no information on signs so I would recommend we withhold any approval.

Mr. Galsteer asked if the parapet height was equal to Office Max? Mr. McErlane said they are fairly close. Mr. Galster asked if this was consistent with the structural changes in the center. Mr. McErlane confirmed this.

Mr. Okum said we go to Jacks and the cuts across the landscaping from the parking aisles are a little odd. It would be better and should be worked out so they can have access ways into the store. That landscaping needs updating anyway so it wouldn’t hurt to look at it.


PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
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FAÇADE CHANGE – DAVID’S BRIDAL - 720 KEMPER COMMONS CIRCLE

Mr. Okum moved to approve the façade change with the color pallet and drawings as submitted and including staff comments and recommendations. Mr. Butrum seconded the motion. All voted aye, and the approval was granted unanimously.


D. Approval of Façade Change, BJ’s Restaurant, 11700 Princeton Pike

Jerry McClain of Carter Burgess of Dallas Texas approached the commission. I will try to explain the differences between the approved elevation and what we are submitting.

We have taken away some of the EIFS pilasters and added some more slate to increase the richness of the building. We also have taken away some of the metal panels and added bronzed aluminum elements. It is the same principle that was approved by commission.

We added extruded aluminum light band for the evening, which is a nice soft light.

The footprint and everything else stays the same. We have tried to apply some of BJ’s characteristics. Their concept is an upscale Chicago pizzeria. The price is a little less than the Cheesecake Factory. There is a slate floor and slate roof; it is a top notch quality restaurant with great food beer and service.

Mr. McErlane reported that the final development plan was approved on February 14, 20006 and modifications to that plan were approved on November 14, 2006.

Metal profile panels have been removed from the west side and replaced with an EIFS finish which also includes some vertical fins about four feet on center.

The previous plan showed something similar to a rust color on the tower element and they are proposing to expand that over their main entrance and also have it placed on the northwest corner of their space so it runs the full height of their building.

The entrance to their space incorporates a revolving door and has a little bit of a glass skylight over the top.

The pilasters have been changed to an EIFS with a slate veneer finish and there is some sort of tube element. Mr. McClain reported it is conceptual right now; with the dark material, we want to add depth and lightness. Mr. McErlane asked if it would incorporate a light feature, and Mr. McClain said that it didn’t.; there will only be a lower sconce.

Mr. McErlane said we did have sign details under a previous submittal which totaled 174.42 s.f. There were no signs submitted with this package, although I met with the applicant and they had details.

Mr. McClain said I had a signage package and BJ’s has a prototypical sign package but it hasn’t been developed for this.


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VI D FAÇADE CHANGE – BJ’S RESTAURANT – 11700 PRINCETON PIKE

Mr. Madl reported that the PUD modification plan that they submitted is consistent with previous as relates to site issues so there are no issues.

Mr. Okum moved to approve the plan as submitted including staff comments and recommendations and the color palette as submitted. No signage will be approved at this time. Mr. Galster seconded the motion. All voted aye, and the approval was granted unanimously.

VII. DISCUSSION

Mr. Galster reported that Council made a minor change to the electronic sign ordinance attachment and added a maintenance paragraph.

Mr. McErlane said I have one Zoning Code amendment I would like for Planning Commission to at least agree on in concept even if we don’t have the total language tweaked.

The draft in front of you came from the law director’s office. It provides for a progressive penalty for Zoning Code violations. Currently our penalty is a Minor Misdemeanor and can be paid out like a traffic ticket. So when we find someone in violation we write a complaint which may take a few days to serve, and they can come in and pay $50 and it never gets resolved. So, we start the process over again. Particularly if we are talking business violations, $50 is not much of a penalty to pay to be in violation of the Zoning Code.

So if we have more than one violation in a two-year period, it will be subject to a Fourth Degree Misdemeanor and if there are more than two guilty determinations in a two-year period, it goes to Third Degree and if it is three convictions in a two-year period it goes to Second Degree.

The real advantage is that once it gets to at least a Fourth Degree Misdemeanor, they have to appear in court, and that gets their attention, particularly with corporations who have to bring their attorneys into Mayor’s Court.

Mr. Okum commented it makes good sense and should be moved forward.

Mr. Galster said it doesn’t have to be the same violation, right? Mr. McErlane responded we typically would use it for the same violation although as it is worded it could be any violation. Mr. Galster commented I think it is important for us to find a way to get tougher on all of our maintenance and building code violations. If this allows that to happen, I am all for it. Anything we can do to get tougher and get some of these buildings in better shape, I’ll be supporting that here and in Council as well.

Mr. Hawkins asked who would be responsible. Mr. McErlane reported we are informed by the Police Department when they are paid out so we would have record of their previous appearances. Mr. Hawkins wondered if it would be the owner, and Mr. McErlane answered in most cases. In rental properties, it might be the tenant.

Mr. Vanover agreed with Mr. Galster. It’s not fair to the rest of the residents and commercial citizens who take pride in their property.
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VII – DISCUSSION – ZONING CODE AMENDMENT PENALTIES

Mr. Galster said I know we have to give them a certain amount of time to get something done, but if they can’t cut their grass in two days, we should be cutting it. If we need to shorten the time to address the lawn issue, I think we should. We should have the law director look to make sure we have allowed a reasonable amount of time and have a much more effective enforcement of the grass length; we should look at that as well.

Mr. Okum said I agree, but you have to consider a person’s rights when you are entering their property with a contractor’s equipment. We have to cover and protect the City’s interests as well.

Mr. Okum moved to refer this to Council and Mr. Butrum seconded the motion. By voice vote, all voted aye, and this will be referred to Council.

VIII. CHAIRMAN’S REPORT

A. King Wireless – 11586 Springfield Pike – Window Sign
B. Entenmanns – 123 West Kemper Road – Wall Sign
C. K & G Fashion Superstore – 895 East Kemper Road (former Barnes & Noble) – Wall Sign and Panel Change in Pole Sign
D. Mallard Lakes – 12100 Lake Circle Drive – Ground Sign
E. John Brito Notario Publico – 282 Northland Blvd. – Wall Sign


IX. ADJOURNMENT

Mr. Vanover moved to adjourn and Mr. Butrum seconded the motion. By voice vote, all voted aye, and Planning Commission adjourned at 8:05 p.m.

                        Respectfully submitted,



________________________,2007    __________________________
                        William G. Syfert, Chairman



________________________,2007    __________________________
                        Lawrence Hawkins III Secretary