PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
13 JUNE 2006
7:00 P.M.

I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:01 p.m. by Chairman William G. Syfert.

II. ROLL CALL

Members Present:        Tony Butrum, Robert Coleman, Steve Galster,
                Lawrence Hawkins, Dave Okum, Tom Vanover
                and Chairman Syfert

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

III. MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF 9 MAY 2006

Mr. Galster moved to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded the motion. By voice vote all voted aye, and the Minutes were adopted unanimously.

IV. CORRESPONDENCE

A. Report on Council
Mr. Galster said the Springdale Bicentennial will be celebrated August 23rd to September 23rd.
B. Zoning Bulletin – May 10, 2006
C. Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes – April 18, 2006

V. OLD BUSINESS

A. Modification of Existing Conditional Use Permit – Glenmary Home Missioners, 4119 Glenmary Trace – tabled 5/9/06

Bill Santen, Attorney for Glenmary Missioners said this drive is not to serve the general public; it is to serve them, the few missioners who live there and their employees. It is not to be used by trucks or commercial vehicles.

The reason they are asking for this driveway is highlighted by the fact of the large accident on Route 4 which closed the highway for six hours. The Glenway Missioners would be willing to permit the City to use that driveway in the event of another such accident.

This highway provides 50,000 vehicles per day. Looking at that as 80% over a 12-hour period, that is 3300 cars an hour, and the Glenmary Missioners are having a terrible time getting out of their property. So, they have asked for a driveway to go to Ray Norrish Drive, and provided for a gate to be on Ray Norrish. This gate would only be opened by a pass key. It would not open any other way.

Mr. Santen added there is a request to eliminate lights. The reason for that is because the employees get there during daylight hours and leave at 4:30 in the afternoon. There would be no reason for them to spend a lot of money in putting lights on the property.

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V A – GLENMARY HOME MISSIONERS CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT

Mr. Santen added your engineering department seems to recommend that there not be lights, and in order to provide safety they would like guardrails, and we are perfectly happy with guardrails.

Only one gate is indicated on our plans. Occasionally at night a priest might go out of the property that way, but I doubt it because they could use Route 4 at night when it is less busy. That is another reason why lights are not the type of expense that should be placed on them for this private roadway.

At the last hearing, your commissioners suggested two gates. The purpose of the two gates was to see that trespassers coming down the highway would go up the driveway of the Glenmary Missioners, somehow get lost and take that drive down to the bottom of the gate at Ray Norrish, have to turn around and come back. Further, that might happen to a truck.

We have looked at that very carefully and first of all, a trespasser has no reason to be here. He is stopped from becoming a trespasser by a large sign on the right side of the driveway. Up further there is a parking lot to your left and where the driveway narrows going toward the priests’ quarters, there will be another sign. If you were to go to the right of the priests’ quarters, there is a parking lot where the drive will start and another sign will be there. There also will be a bar that is 8 or 10 feet above the ground so a truck cannot get onto that driveway. Father Dorsey showed the signs.

Mr. Santen said we hope that addresses those concerns. Father Dorsey added that the electronic gate at Ray Norrish will only be able to be opened with a pass key from either end, and it will never open automatically, only with a pass key.

Mr. Santen stated the last time we were here we addressed the tree ordinance and we are willing to go along with it, and the City of Springdale already has calibrated the trees. I think that is something that has already been worked out.

The City of Springdale engineers in their plan review of the private drive indicates “this office’s recommendations for accepting the reduced pavement width and the elimination of all driveway lighting would be to require a guardrail at least in all areas where the slope height is in excess of 15 feet, a slope steeper than 3 to 1 or an area with a tight radius.” The other thing that they add is the fact that in the June submittal package, the applicant has added an overhead clearance sign that hangs down over the road and notes a clearance of 8’-6” and is located at the building end of the private drive. That means that a truck would not be able to go through there. Mr. Santen commented I hope we have addressed all of your concerns.

Mr. McErlane reported on September 13, 2005 Planning issued a conditional use permit to the Glenmary Home Missioners to construct a driveway.

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V A – GLENMARY HOME MISSIONERS CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT

Mr. McErlane stated there were a number of conditions. One was that the lighting should be non-glare low level and not exceed 10 feet in height. The tree replacement required would be placed as a burden on the property if it were to be developed in the future. The traffic would be controlled at both ends with a gate operated by key or remote control and that they would remain closed when they weren’t in use. Should the Glenmary property change in the future to a different type of use, the driveway access would be abandoned or vacated. A turnaround would be constructed at the end of Ray Norrish Drive should someone approach the gate and need to turn around and go back down Ray Norrish Drive. The gate should be an iron picket residential style gate. The driveway would be no closer than 30 feet to the property lines on Springdale Lake Drive and subject to other staff recommendations.

On the tree replacement requirements and the potential future use of the property, we have a draft of restrictive covenants for the property that have been reviewed by the city law director, and we have given comments back to the applicant.

Tonight the applicant is asking for relief from three different requirements. One is the width of the driveway, which they propose to construct at a lane and one-half. Our understanding is that they are going to construct berms of the normal width so should they need to use the berms to turn around, they could do so.

They also want to eliminate the lighting from the driveway. The primary concern of the Planning Commission about lighting was more of a non-glare issue relative to the residential properties adjacent to it.

The third is to eliminate the gate on the northern end of the driveway at the Glenmary facilities.

We received a resubmittal that explains that the applicant is intending to put a clearance sign at the north end of the driveway primarily to limit truck traffic down that driveway because there were some concerns expressed by Planning. The rest of their driveway down to Route 4 has been shown on those plans as well, but that is the extent of the new submittals.

Mr. Shvegzda reported that they are eliminating half of the pavement width, but the grading continues out for that same width as was originally proposed. The recommendation in terms of the guard rail is a minimum requirement in lieu of the width and the lighting. We also suggested that a more aesthetically pleasing type guard rail system be used in those locations rather than your typical ODOT type. They have proposed a sign that limits certain vehicles from entering.

Mr. Galster asked if Mr. Shvegzda had reviewed the elimination of the second gate; are you comfortable with that in terms of safety?




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V A – GLENMARY HOME MISSIONERS CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT

Mr. Shvegzda answered the concern was regarding vehicles going down into that area and not being able to complete the route and having to back up and exit where they came from. There really is sufficient width of graded area for somebody to turn around and head back.

Mr. Okum asked how far down the driveway width would be reduced, and Mr. Shvegzda answered it is from 20 to 15 feet.

Mr. Syfert opened the public hearing.

Jim Skirvin of 672 Cloverdale Avenue said I have lived in Springdale since 1953 and my wife has lived here all her life, and works for Glenmary Home Missions. She goes up and back twice a day and we are very concerned about the accident that was mentioned earlier. Three people were killed, and they were turning the same way my wife and a lot of the others who work there turn, and they had a light. I would request that you allow them to put in that back road without the lighting and make it 15 feet wide and with one gate. I can’t believe that anybody who might accidentally wander in there would be in any more danger than some of the people who have to turn in there at least twice a day. It is very dangerous.

Nilda Goheen said I have lived at 125 Ruskin Drive for 42 years. I am one of those drivers who go to Glenmary Missioners on a regular basis for mass, and I am thankful they have that service we can participate in. I do thank you for granting them permission for the driveway. I won’t be able to use it myself, but I can understand the traffic problems. Because of their ministry and how they are involved in helping the poor, I contribute to their ministry, participate and would appreciate all the considerations that you can give them. Their monies are invested in the poor with the ministries they are involved in. I believe that the money to pay for those extra things that would not be essential to be done could be used for their ministry. They are not paid people; they are people who are doing this for the good of others. If those considerations are given, it would be very helpful to their ministry. In addition to myself, I asked a couple of my neighbors to come with me, Martha Miller and Martin Fehr.

Mr. Louis Wright said my wife Belinda and I have lived on Springdale Lake Drive for 20 years. My house would be right here (showed on map). My concern is how far the driveway would be behind my property. I think I heard 30 feet; is that true? Mr. Galster answered that the minimum from the property line is 30 feet. Mr. Wright commented that is not very far.

Will there be light posts all the way down that driveway? Father Dorsey indicated no, and Mr. Wright added I don’t want lights in my back yard either. I understand that this is the Missioners’ property and they are entitled to a driveway, and I don’t have a problem with that. I just needed the information.



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V A – GLENMARY HOME MISSIONERS CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT

Mr. Becker responded from your house, that drive will be 165 to 170 feet. It will be considerably down the hill, so you will not see it. Mr. Wright said that is what I wanted to know; thank you.

Mr. Galster said for the record, that was on Page 3 of 5 in our packets, and you were looking at the house numbered 23.

Mr. Syfert closed the public hearing.

Mr. Okum said I am very pleased to see the residents and neighbors come out to this public hearing. Concerning the gate location, if someone goes down the driveway to that point, will there be a t turnaround or something for a person in that situation?

Mr. Becker responded there will be a 40-foot graded area from top of berm to top of berm. At the gate I would like to at least gravel the area that is not paved so it makes a decent turn around. If someone would get in there and couldn’t get through the gate, there would be a 40-foot wide compacted gravel surface so they could turn around and go back out the way they came. Father Dorsey confirmed this.

Mr. Hawkins asked if there would be a guard rail where the driveway meets Ray Norrish? Mr. Becker confirmed that there would be a guard rail there, and I believe that is the only place that qualifies. Our downhill slopes are four to one.

Mr. Shvegzda added that still remains to be seen because we do have a note in terms of the overall height. Mr. Becker responded if we are 15 feet or above, we will gladly guardrail that too. That is a safety factor and is not a problem.

Mr. Butrum asked the contingency plan if that mechanism of the gate becomes non-operational over the course of time. Mr. Becker responded you just can’t use it. Father Dorsey added you have it fixed or go to Route 4. Mr. Butrum commented so the plan is not to open the gate until it is fixed.

Mr. Coleman said in my opinion the applicant ha shown a high level of conscientiousness in making efforts to be explicit that the property is a private drive. I am convinced that the driveway is a private one and to that extent I certainly support what you have done.

Mr. Okum moved to approve the modifications to the existing Conditional Use Permit for Glenmary Missioners. This shall include:

1. Recommendations of staff
2. Packet received from applicant dated received June 1, 2006 1-5 through 5-5
3. Drive on the site shall be allowed to be at a15-foot width and grading shall be extended to the original width as indicated by the applicant


PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
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V A – GLENMARY HOME MISSIONERS CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT

4. The gate system shall consist of one gate which shall be near Ray Norrish Drive’s ingress/egress location to the private drive. The gate shall be of the same material indicated in the original Conditional Use Permit and shall be mechanically operated with either a card or pass key remote control which shall be activated from either side of the gate. No auto activation or proximity activation shall be permitted on the gate. The gate shall remain closed at all times.
5. Access and limiting of traffic onto the private drive shall be for non-commercial use in nature and shall be controlled by an overhead control device and the addition of private drive signage as presented by the applicant.
6. There shall be a gravel turn around area nearest the gate as indicated by the applicant.
7. The lighting originally on the Conditional Use Permit shall be only placed on the drive at the discretion of the owner, but limited to the conditions of the original Conditional Use Permit.
8. All other original conditions for the Conditional Use Permit shall remain in effect.

Mr. Butrum seconded the motion. All voted aye, and the approval was granted unanimously.

B. Garden Ridge – 11925 Commons Drive – Consideration of Parking Requirements and Sign Proposals

Mr. Syfert reported the agenda indicates review of sign proposals, but we do have a memo stating they are withdrawing their sign proposal for tonight.

Elliott Flaum of Garden Ridge said 567 parking spaces are required for our project, and the current allotment is 510 parking spaces.

We have provided information showing that the current existing stores do not require anywhere near that number even during peak times. We provided information on our store in Katy Texas in a 45-minute period of time at a peak time of 2 o’clock in the afternoon had 203 cars in the parking lot. In March, our second peak period of the year, our store in Louisville Kentucky had 163. The Texas store is approximately a $15 million dollar a year store, and the Louisville store is approximately $14 million. Our current plan for the Springdale location is about $12 million a year store, or on average $1 million a month or $250,000 per week.
We do an enormous spring season, our second busiest season, which is only 10 to 15% less than our Christmas holiday season.

So the parking does seem more than sufficient, and we have never in any of our stores ever parked out any of our lots.


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V B GARDEN RIDGE 11925 COMMONS DRIVE PARKING REQUIREMENTS

Mr. McErlane reported that the property is zoned PUD and is part of the Tri-County Commons PUD. Planning Commission approved the use of Garden Ridge in the former Great Indoor store on March 14th of this year. At that time no building exterior changes, building signs and no free-standing signs were approved. A condition was that the dead and unhealthy landscape material would have to be replaced and that the applicant and owner would come up with a resolution for required parking and traffic on the entire PUD with City staff.

The applicant has indicated that the Zoning Code requires them to park 567 spaces and The Great Indoors use was allocated 510 parking spaces, so there is a shortfall of 57 spaces.

The applicant has provided information on two of their stores, one in Houston and one in the Louisville area. They found that the peak parking on a Saturday afternoon at those locations were 203 in one location and 163 in the other.

Ms. McBride added we worked very closely with the applicant to develop that total number of parking spaces required based on our code, so we are very comfortable with 567 spaces being required based on the breakdown of the actual Garden Ridge store.

From a staff perspective, the 510 to 567, I don’t think any of us have ever seen that lot completely full. There is additional parking available within the PUD, and I don’t think that compromises the parking integrity of that center, so I don’t have a problem with the reduction.

Mr. Galster moved to modify our March 14, 2006 approval to eliminate Item E to allow the reduction in parking to 510 spaces. All other contingencies remain in effect. Mr. Okum seconded the motion.

Mr. Flaum said so the signage and landscaping will be addressed at the next meeting.

All voted aye, and the approval was granted unanimously.

VI.    NEW BUSINESS

A.    Approval of Conditional Use Permit to Allow a Drive-Thru Coffee Shop at 155 Northland Boulevard

Mr. Syfert said after the presentation and staff comments, it will be open to the public for any comments they wish to make.

Roger Robinson of Avilla Architects said I am the architect for Troy Patten the owner of the property. Unfortunately he was not able to make it here. Mr. Syfert asked if he were in a position to speak on his behalf, and Mr. Robinson indicated that he was.

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VI A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT – JAVA JO’Z – 155 NORTHLAND BLVD.

Mr. Robinson said we are here to ask for conditional approval of the use of Java Jo’z. The restaurant is a license of a coffee shop to provide drive through coffee. There also will be some walk in service. They expect 80% of the sales to be drive through. Therefore, they are asking to modify the parking lot as I have shown in this drawing to allow for the stacking of five cars 19 feet in length of each, from the order point. The order point is at the window; they do not have a microphone menu board.

Other things they would be selling in the restaurant are pastries, bottled waters and assorted things that would be in line with a coffee shop.

The other changes proposed for the site are to orient the parking of these 10 spaces south of the building that are now 90 degrees to 25 degrees so we could maintain a one-way drive 13 feet wide and allow the stacking of the five cars not to impede that 13-foot distance.

I am in receipt of staff’s comments and I have a memo I would like to share with you in response to those comments:

“The owner agrees to have a landscape designer design a revised plantings plan to include additional trees shrubs and plant material to create an attractive design. That design will be submitted to the Springdale staff for review and approval.

“The owner agrees to add landscaping to screen the meter pit on Boggs Lane.

“The owner agrees to internally illuminate the exterior menu board.

“Please find samples of the paint colors to be used on the exterior of the building.”

I believe you have in your files a color rendering of the side of the building. I was asked to provide actual colors, and these are the actual colors (showed color board).

Mr. Syfert asked if the brown color was the color of the beans on the bottom and Mr. Robinson said yes, and the wave at the top would be the same color. Those will not be painted; they will be made out of vinyl so they will be uniform and crisp.

The present parking stall lines will be moved by scarifying the old lines. A site plan showing any changes in elevation to the pavement area and locations of the catch basins will be submitted to Springdale staff for review and approval.

I have the impervious surface area ratios. The existing is 37,300. The total site is 50,268 s.f., so the ratio is 74.20%. The proposed actually reduces the number of square feet of impervious area by a small amount, 37,065 the ratio would be 73.73%.
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VI A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT – JAVA JO’Z – 155 NORTHLAND BLVD.

Mr. McErlane reported that the property is zoned General Business. The applicant is proposing to convert the former FedEx building to a coffee shop with a drive up window.

Section 153.218 of the Zoning Code does require that drive through establishments obtain a Conditional Use Permit from the Planning Commission. The Public Hearing has been advertised and notices have gone out to property owners within 200 feet.

Although there is an existing drop off window from when the FedEx operation was there, the intensity of the use will change. The existing use was a non-conforming use, so the Conditional Use Permit will cause them to be an actual conforming use if it is granted.

The applicant is proposing new landscaping and parking lot striping on site. He also is proposing to remove the satellite antenna from the roof, repaint the building and add three wall signs to the building. There are no free-standing signs indicated.

The applicant has provided a color board tonight, which we requested. There are 48 existing parking spaces. The existing beauty college requires 35 of them and Java Jo’z only requires seven so the total required parking is 42 spaces and the applicant is showing 56 on the site.

Ms. McBride added they do have the five stacking spaces that we require for the drives through window and they do meet our requirements in terms of size and the fact that they don’t block any parking spaces or circulation on the site. Their order point is at the window, so that is where the stacking spaces are counted from.

In terms of waste, they are proposing to use two 50-gallon containers for the site and they will be contained in a 3 x 7 area. It will be enclosed by 4’-6” tall EIFS walls on three sides and solid wood gates on the other side. Our code requires a masonry enclosure if you have over 120 gallons in waste containment, and they are under that.

We had some issues with the landscape plan and the applicant has indicated their willingness to work with us and between staff and the applicant, we can come up with something that will be acceptable to both parties, including the screening of that meter pit on Boggs Lane.

The existing lighting on the site is to remain as is. One of our questions had been about the existing and proposed impervious surface area and that was provided this evening.

We also were looking for building samples if they were going to be adding anything to the building, which we don’t believe is the case and color samples which they brought this evening.

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PAGE TEN

VI A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT – JAVA JO’Z – 155 NORTHLAND BLVD.

Ms. McBride stated they are proposing one new awning which will be over the drive through window and it is not to be illuminated. The signage they are proposing is significantly under what they are allowed to have, and there will be no free-standing sign. The only concern staff had was the fact that the menu board was originally to be externally illuminated with a floodlight and we are very pleased to hear that it is now internally illuminated.

Mr. Galster asked the color of the awning. Mr. Robinson said we haven’t decided on that yet. The brightest it would be would be the accent color, and the alternative would be the brown of the stripe. Mr. Galster asked if there were a sign or logo on the awning, and Mr. Robinson answered no.

Mr. Shvegzda reported that the parking lot on the southwest side of the building will be reconfigured to provide 45 degree parking. That way it will have the drive aisle width plus the width for the drive through traffic to queue through that area.

The applicant has noted that the existing pavement markings are to be removed by grinding them off and restripe them. They also have noted that the actual impervious area is being reduced slightly, and combined with the fact that the building is being reused would lead us to not recommend that any additional detention be required for the site. Additional information on how the modifications for the drive through are affecting the existing drainage patterns on the site will be forthcoming from the applicant.

On the color pallet, Mr. Okum wondered if the finishes were flat or low luster. Mr. Robinson answered we had hoped for a high gloss, similar to what it is now. Mr. Okum commented those are pretty strong colors to put gloss on that building.

Mr. Robinson responded given the design of the building itself, we wanted to continue that high tech look. Mr. Okum added that’s a pretty big sign coming down Northland Boulevard. Mr. Robinson continued the other thing is that the high gloss finish will attract less dirt so over time it will appear less dirty as opposed to a flatter finish.

Mr. Okum asked the color of the spokes on the roof and Mr. Robinson answered the darker brown; it would not be the orange.

Mr. Okum said I don’t know how the rest of the commission feels, but I think a high gloss building setting there in these color ranges is pretty strong for that site. Mr. Galster said so the orange color is only going underneath the top cap of the building. Mr. Robinson answered it is going in two stripes, indicating on the south elevation. Mr. Galster asked Mr. Okum if he had any problem if the accent colors were high gloss and the yellow a flat paint? Mr. Okum responded as long as the yellow would be low luster, I wouldn’t have a problem.

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VI A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT – JAVA JO’Z – 155 NORTHLAND BLVD.

Mr. Galster asked the applicant if he had a problem with that, and Mr. Robinson indicated that he did not.

Addressing Mr. Shvegzda, Mr. Vanover said on the 45 degree parking, I don’t like backing into incoming traffic; it is pretty tight. You have a 13-foot drive aisle to back into.

Mr. Shvegzda responded the 13-foot width is what is required for a 45-degree angle. Mr. McErlane added they are required to have 42 parking spaces and they have 56. Mr. Shvegzda commented I assume the majority of people parking there would be employees.

Mr. Robinson agreed, adding that the 13 feet takes place at the very end of the drive. Further back it is actually 19’-6”.

Mr. Vanover responded if you have people coming in to get into your drive through, they are occupying that. Your working numbers are the 13 feet and the 6’-6”.

Where will the main entrance be? Mr. Robinson answered the projection is that 80% of the traffic will be through the drive-through window. Only 20% will be walk in. We anticipate most walk ins to happen from the surrounding office areas. So there are doors on the north and the south.

Mr. Syfert asked the members if anyone else had a problem with the drive. Mr. Galster said I drive a big vehicle and actually prefer the 45 degree parking for ease of backing out. My concern would be the easternmost spot, but in general I think it is a whole lot easier than a 90 degree spot to back out of.

I think if there was an order menu board that pushed all those cars back around the building, it would be a much bigger issue but because of the fact that they actually have to get to the window first, they would have six or seven cars in line because there is any interference at all and then there is still 13 feet. I actually think it makes it easier to see the incoming traffic.

Mr. Okum commented I don’t mind the angled parking spaces when I have room. Since you are over the required parking, maybe you could drop one of the spaces and widen the spaces from nine to 10. Do you have a problem with that? Mr. Robinson responded we would have to talk with the present owner of the building itself, whether that would be a concern of his. He is leasing the building.

Mr. Okum added if those spaces could be widened out a little bit I don’t think I would have a problem with the angle. Mr. Robinson answered under normal circumstances I would say not a problem. It is that we are barely getting these seven here, and we are losing one space now but I would be more than happy to discuss that with the owner of the property and the staff.

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VI A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT – JAVA JO’Z – 155 NORTHLAND BLVD.

Mr. Okum said so we can understand that we will attempt to widen the angled spaces by reducing the area by one space.

Mr. Syfert opened the public hearing. No one came forward and he closed the public hearing.

Mr. Galster said the wavy stripes will be vinyl and not painted, and if that is a high gloss vinyl, that will deteriorate in a relatively short period of time. I’m a little concerned about the maintenance of that. If it lasts three to four years outdoors, I would be amazed.

Mr. Robinson said that is another reason why we made the color dark brown; the darker color does not fade as much.

Mr. Okum said if there were conditions that the spokes on the west side should not be of the accent color, I’m sure the applicant would not have a problem with that. Otherwise we could have orange spokes on the front of the building.

Mr. Okum moved to approve the Conditional Use Permit for Java Jo’z at 155 Northland Boulevard. Approval shall include:

1. Staff, city engineer’s and city planner’s recommendations.
2. All lighting or relamping of existing fixtures shall conform to the Zoning Code requirements
3. Landscaping conditions shall include staff review and approval, and landscaping shall be maintained at all times
4. Parking drive site conditions shall include an attempt to widen the angled spaces on the south side of the building by reducing the area by one parking space
5. All four building elevations as presented shall have an exterior color based on the color pallet provided
6. The base color shall be flat low luster finish with no gloss finishes on the main part or dominant colors on the building. Accent stripes may be of gloss. Spokes on the west side shall not be of the accent stripe color.

Mr. Galster seconded the motion. All members voted aye, and the Conditional Use Permit was granted unanimously.

B.    Approval of Revision to PUD to allow Jared Jewelers at 11711 Princeton Pike (Formerly Wendy’s)

Paul Wolenski of Sterling Jewelers said we are here for your approval of the construction of a new Jared Galleria of Jewelry, a retail jewelry store. With me tonight are Bob land John Gilhart owners of Princeton Plaza, Ralph Terbrueggen with Woolpert Associates, and Mike Glaser Director of Construction for the Jared stores. We are in the process of working with the city staff pertaining to comments with our initial submittals. We have our building design drawings completed and we intend to submit our plans in the near future for the building construction.
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PAGE THIRTEEN

VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. Wolenski said we would demolish the existing building and construct a 6,000 s.f. retail jewelry store building. Several features of the existing site will remain. The parking stalls will be in the same location. We would like to reuse as much of the existing pavement as possible, and we will be resurfacing that pavement.

Along with our submission, we have submitted our protypical sign package. We received comments from Mr. McErlane, and we certainly can scale down the package. We were looking for your opinion to see if there would be any kind of variance granted along with the PUD to allow some of the signage. If there are any questions or comments on the signage, I would like to withdraw it from this application.

I have a separate package that I would like to distribute (gave to members). Staff has not seen these, but I would like to have feedback in terms of what we can do in terms of signage. We do have certain sizes and designs that we would like to utilize

Mr. Syfert stated we normally don’t act on something that staff hasn’t seen yet.

Mr. Wolenski said that is fine; I wanted to present it to you.

Mr. Wolenski added staff indicated to us that 148 square feet of signage was the maximum allowed on the property. The package you are looking at has been downscaled dramatically. We reduced the font of the lettering on both the east and south sides, as well as eliminating any graphics on the awnings, which was commented on as well. This also includes the reimaging of the existing pylon.

The package you are looking at comes to approximately 217 s.f. Normally our building is oriented with a footprint of approximately 60’ x 100’, and the building would be
positioned where the 100’ dimension would be our front entrance which generally we would like to have presented to the street side. When considering that as the dimension that the sign calculation would be based on, it is approximately 100 feet long with the 1½ dimension plus 40 and would put us up near 200 s.f. With that in consideration, I would like to present that, and if it can be reviewed and approved at a later date, that would be fine as well.

Mr. McErlane reported the property is zoned Planned Unit Development as is a part of the Princeton Plaza PUD. The applicant is proposing to demolish the former Wendy’s restaurant and build a 5,994 s.f. retail jewelry store with 15 parking spaces on site. Because this is a PUD, the two councilmembers on Planning will need to make a determination as to whether or not this constitutes a major departure from the preliminary plan.


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PAGE FOURTEEN

VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. McErlane stated that the demolition plan shows one six-inch caliper evergreen tree that is proposed to be removed. For replacement on redevelopment sites, the Tree Preservation Ordinance requires a one for one replacement of the same type category tree. The planting plan shows one 2 ½ caliper inch honey locust to be planted, which is a Category I tree so if Planning feels it is appropriate to change categories, we are recommending they meet the minimum planting caliper inches that are required. In essence that means if we go to Category I trees, which are overstory hardwoods, the minimum planting size is three inches. If you agree to ornamentals the minimum size is two inches, so we are looking for six total replacement inches.

Two handicap parking spaces are shown and both are van accessible. The handicap code actually says that they are to be located on the shortest accessible route to the building which means they need to be located further to the south and closer to the sidewalk which leads to the front of the building, not to the north end of that parking lot.

Ms. McBride said 27 parking spaces are required and they have 15 on their site, but there is parking adjacent to the south and to the west, and the overall PUD is fine with regards to the parking that is required and provided.

The parking to the south (and the entrance to the store is on that south façade) and there is some parking to the east and the west that will be accessing the front of that store. There is parking that will be across that main access drive, and it is oriented so that when you come in you would pull in those angled parking spaces.

The problem would be if you pull in there and go to the jewelry store, if you are leaving and going out onto Princeton, you will be backing out at a very odd angle across all those lanes of traffic to exit. Or and worse if you were going to go on into the center you would be backing out across those lanes of access. We have suggested a possible reorientation. We realize that is not on the applicant’s property, but maybe the owner of the center would look at the reorienting of those spaces so they are angled the reverse way and when you are backing out you are backing out in the right direction.

We had some minor changes to the landscaping plan. We have worked with the applicant’s landscape architect on other projects and I’m sure we can work with them to resolve the minor issues we have.

On site lighting, on the west side of the property they are going to reuse an existing pole and fixture and relocate it seven feet. On the east side of the property they will reuse two poles and put two new fixtures on those and they will be 400 watt metal halide flat lens shoebox fixtures.

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VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Ms. McBride stated the site will exceed our requirement of .5 foot candles on the property line, but that property line is shared by other retail uses within the PUD, so I think Planning should modify that requirement.

We did get building elevations and details of the light fixtures including those that are to be mounted on the building itself.

The waste enclosure is proposed for the north property line adjacent to Frisch’s and it is quick brick on three sides with gates on the fourth side, which complies with our requirements.

The applicant has supplied us with new signage information tonight. They are proposing to reuse the existing pole sign that Wendy’s had which is 25 feet high with 51.3 square feet of sign area. They are proposing a total of 310.37 square feet of sign area. That is only considering the south elevation, the east elevation and the north elevation. We did not include the signage that they are proposing on the west elevation, because that is not visible from a public right of way but they were proposing signage on that elevation as well.

The total signage that was proposed prior to tonight was 361.67 square feet which compares with the 148 square feet that is permitted.

They have a diamond logo that is illuminated above the Jared and the applicant said that was a light architectural element but staff feels pretty strongly that it is signage given the proposed user. If it was a lighted bicycle on the jewelry store, we might agree that it was an architectural feature, but the diamond counts as signage.

What Planning Commission may wish to do is exclude signage from the approval package this evening and I think the applicant has indicated that they can live with that and give us a chance to look at this and maybe meet with the applicant to determine what works for them and what we can recommend fairly to the commission.

We did get building materials and color samples. The one missing was the awning material and we would need that. They have located the mechanical equipment on the building elevations so we can see that it is screened by the parapet. The only question we had was how the rear of those peaks will be treated, because there are peaks proposed for all four sides and may be visible.

Addressing the applicant, Mr. Galster said would you be open to a monument sign rather than the pole sign. If we are going to be reconsidering the signage later, I’d like to consider a monument sign rather than a pole sign, if you are open to it. Most of the times I am much more lenient with numbers when I have a monument sign rather than a pole sign. I believe that is a much more attractive presentation.
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VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. Robinson responded that is certainly something we can consider. Something to reimage the existing sign would allow an existing sign to remain, but if you are willing to allow the construction of a new monument sign, we certainly would be willing to work with you. Mr. Galster commented also, it is too close to the front of your building.

Mr. Shvegzda reported the access points and drive aisles are being retained. The only exception would be the fact that the drive through lane is being eliminated. If you go up across the frontage of the applicant’s site, there is a jog onto the Frisch’s drive aisle. Our question is what is the possibility of moving the parking back against 747 and whether that is an advantage or not.

The parking lot is to be resurfaced and the drive through lane will be eliminated. There is a curb along the north side of the property that will be salvaged. It will need to be reviewed upon completion of the construction to make sure that the demolition and construction of the new building hadn’t damaged the existing curb in the area.

There is a proposed modular retaining wall at the front of the building. The building elevation sets lower than the parking lot so that the retaining wall won’t be visible from the parking lot or the roadway. It is probably about two feet high maximum. They have noted it to be a specific type, but we haven’t seen the catalog information. We think it is a standard format that we have seen in past submittals, but we would like the additional information on that.

There is an existing detention basin on the site and there is no additional detention being proposed for this site. There is a slight decrease in impervious area so it would be our recommendation that additional detention not be required as part of this development.

As part of the additional improvements on the site to handle storm water runoff, on the west part of the site the storm flow is sheet flowing off the site down to the west into catch basins that exist back further onto the Springdale Plaza development. On the east side a catch basin is being constructed at the north property line to intercept storm flow before it enters onto the Frisch’s site, which is good. As part of the water quality effort, the applicant has proposed to provide a sump of some sort at the catch basin to pick up contaminants particularly grit. We need a little more information on the dimensions of that and it is something that will have to be maintained by the property owner, but it is an acceptable situation.

Although there are no firm numbers provided for the traffic, I think it is pretty dramatic in terms of a reduction of what we have for the Wendy’s particularly with the drive through at lunch hour versus the jewelry store.


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VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. Shvegzda continued in terms of maintenance of traffic during construction, the applicant has noted that the area of construction will be delineated off with barrels or cones, and we want to emphasize that any construction activity should be controlled so it does not cause traffic to be backed up into 747 from any of the adjacent driveways.

Mr. Galster said as councilmember on Planning Commission, I see this as a minor change. Mr. Vanover agreed.

Mr. Okum asked if this site is a part of the PUD and a part of Princeton Plaza as well, or is this a separate parcel that became part of the PUD. Are there separate ownerships and separate deeds?

Mr. McErlane answered it is all a part of Princeton Plaza and a part of the same PUD but there are separate ownerships and separate parcels.

Mr. Okum continued so there must be a common access easement for this use into that driveway, is that correct?

Bob Gilhart, owner of Princeton Plaza said those aren’t lanes, they are access easements. There are three of them (showed on picture).

Mr. Okum asked Mr. Robinson if he had worked with Princeton Plaza people on staff’s recommendation about the angled parking.

Mr. Robinson answered the comment came up in the last few days. We did briefly discuss it prior to the meeting tonight, and I would like to defer this to Mr. Gilhart as well. I believe in terms of changing the direction of the angled parking, we would not prefer to do that mainly because of the safety aspect. If you are backing out of the stall, you would see cars that are approaching you from the center. Mr. Okum said if there is shared parking off that space, in order for you to utilize that space that is an area where your customers may be parking in and they will walk across those entrance lanes to go into the store. It seems a little awkward.

Mr. Robinson responded the majority of the customers enter to the rear of the plaza. This entrance is manly for the tenants up in front, the former Wendy’s, Pearle Vision and others in this space. So this is not a very heavily traveled access way.

On changing the alignment of the parking spaces, I believe we are pretty confident that we would like to keep them as they are without adding further confusion, and allow cars as they pull in here directly off Princeton Pike to be able to pull directly into a space rather than have to enter through the plaza, turn around and come back up to us. We can utilize the angled parking from either direction.


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VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. Okum responded I understand what you are saying; I just don’t totally agree with what you are saying about the safety issue.

One of the things we encouraged with the Tri-County Mall PUD was identified separation walkways that were of a different material for crosswalk access between parking fields and stores. I think something appropriate needs to be put there. I don’t see any more than four or five customers in your store at one time, unless you have a big sale going.

I am thrilled to death about your business going in there; I think it will be a real plus to the plaza. It appears to be a class operation. I think your presentation is very good; I just think that entrance needs to be looked at and Mr. Gilhart and your staff needs to get together to deal with that. I also think there needs to be at the least a change in the pavement material to a stamped or something to delineate a crosswalk point out of the parking field into the business area. At a minimum, that should be a consideration.

I would defer to staff, but I recall meetings with Tri-County Mall about change in material for crosswalk purposes.

Mr. Shvegzda reported the situation we had at the mall was that people would leave their cars, be able to congregate at a particular area and then cross. In this situation everybody will be able to cross directly from their car over.

Mr. Okum said maybe you are right, but staff has recommended that at least on the north side of those parking areas that those parking spaces be changed. Isn’t that correct? Mr. Shvegzda responded that was one of the suggestions. Mr. Okum said I would like to see something done there. I do frequent that part of the mall and I see a problem. There definitely is an issue there with people going in and out. Mr. Galster drives a van and it would be pretty interesting backing that van out.

Mr. Galster commented if I was visiting that site, I would come in off Kemper Road and pull into those parking spaces from the Pearle Vision side.

Is there a concrete barrier that prohibits the left hand turn from the northbound 747? Mr. Robinson answered there is no left turn allowed there. Mr. Galster added I am not going to say that the angle needs to be changed, but I don’t see that entrance used a whole lot. I use it more as an exit.

Mr. Vanover said granted it is easy to come off 747 and get in there, but if you have to park in that back row, you have to angle back into incoming traffic. The only way you can do is feed in and come out and circle around so it would make more sense to feed them in on the entry and if they want to go out that way they can turn out because it would be angled to lead out.
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VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. Vanover added it is a problem and a nasty situation.

Mr. Syfert said what’s the solution? Mr. Butrum asked if there would be a problem with turning them the other direction.
Mr. Robinson responded it is something we can explore. We are tenants to the plaza and we certainly would prefer not to change the existing configuration. It is an existing condition that seemed to work with Wendy’s. As far as the reconfiguration of that row of paring, we would have to have discussions with Mr. Gilhart in terms of how that would affect his plaza. It is something we may consider, but we would prefer to leave it as is.

Mr. Gilhart said the goal is to take the traffic off Princeton Pie. The police chief wants the traffic in here as fast as possible and wants them to continue on here. We have it so it is one lane here and almost two lanes here, so it isn’t just two lanes of traffic; it is about three lanes wide. When you back out of here, you are not backing out into this lane. You are actually backing out right here and can see what is going on. The visibility here is fantastic. By having the angled parking like it is, these people coming southbound on Princeton Pike can either go straight into here, straight down there to park there or they can pull in here, but they get off Princeton Pike.

Mr. Vanover said if you brought them all the way in and looped around and fed into the lines, you are still getting them off 747 quicker. Mr. Gilhart responded we are going to get them in here; I like it this way. The volume of customers here is a good balance. Nobody here has large quantities of customers at one time. They are sporadic. It is not like a Wendy’s at lunchtime. This is a Wendy’s picture and that is not the way we are doing it. That is why we have certain types of retailers down here. These people can come in here and park, and 99% of the time they don’t even have to back out. It is very convenient the way it is. The one thing we are doing to encourage people to make an easy turn into here is to take off a section of the concrete pad by Cingular. They have parking here for Jared’s and if those are full, they can readily park here.

Mr. Robinson added the drive aisle to the rear currently is a one-way aisle, and the only way to reconfigure that would be to completely realign the other side as well.

Mr. Syfert said you could have your employees park over there and then the customers would be forced in the other two lots. That would eliminate the backing in and out all the time.

Mr. Gilhart said the bulk of the employees would be parked along here as required by us. We do not want them to take retail spots.

Mr. Okum said it almost seems that those cars are parking in the driveway, and you indicated that there are basically two outgoing and one incoming lane.
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VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. Gilhart responded I was referring to the size of the lanes. There is only one incoming and one outgoing lane, but on the line striping we made it so that coming in we had it wide enough here so cars could come in and turn into the Wendy’s. Going out is the opposite, it tapers down and is only a right turn. Members looked at C-100, the existing condition and C-200, the proposed condition.

Mr. Okum commented it is on private property, and they would have to live with the problem. The City would have to deal with accidents if they are there. I still think it needs some work and that there is an issue with the pedestrians going across there. It is a downhill grade going in off 747. Mr. Gilhart reported the grade is 5%. Mr. Okum responded you may be at 5% on your property, but from the roadway down it is not 5%. It is steeper.

I am extremely pleased with the type of development; I think it is a good plan and I will be supporting it. The issues of the landscaping and signage need to be resolved. If the owner is not willing to make any changes and feels it is adequate, that’s the way it is going to be.

Mr. Okum moved to approve Jared Jewelers revision to the PUD, including:

1. All staff city engineer and city planner’s recommendations
2. Signage shall be considered at a later date and shall be excluded at this time
3. Staff shall review the rear of the peaks of the parapets
4. Landscaping shall be reviewed and approved by staff.

Mr. Butrum seconded the motion.

Mr. Galster said staff’s recommendation is that those angled parking spaces change; are you saying that they need to change the angled parking when you say all recommendations? Mr. Okum responded I am saying that staff’s encouraging it. Mr. Galster commented that the motion that you have made will require them to change the parking stalls at this time, is that correct? Mr. Okum answered I felt that the parking issues could be resolved with staff, but it doesn’t sound like it. Staff is saying that it needs to be changed; the owner is saying no they don’t want to change it. I guess we will have to exclude staff’s recommendations or consider the motion as I made it.

Mr. Galster moved to amend the motion to allow the exclusion of the requirement that the angled parking spaces at the front of the new development be reconfigured. Mr. Coleman seconded the motion to amend.




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VI B JARED JEWELERS – 11711 PRINCETON PIKE (FORMERLY WENDY’S)

Mr. Galster added I don’t have a problem with having the applicant talk to staff additionally or having the property owner try to figure out a different way, but I would hate to have this whole project hinging on whether or not you re-angle those parking spots. That is my concern.

Mr. Okum said you could move to amend staff’s recommendations and change it for staff to work out a resolution to the parking area. Mr. Galster asked staff if they felt they could work out a resolution to that parking area. Ms. McBride responded the point in making that comment was because we had some concerns about the way that traffic flowed today and how it would flow with the jewelry store given its orientation. If it is not a concern of the commission, we can leave it as it is. It was something I wouldn’t have felt comfortable not bringing to the commission as something for you to discuss. Do I think we can have some kind of resolution? I don’t know that there really is one. What I am hearing from the property owner is that they don’t want to reorient that parking.

Mr. Galster said I’ll let my amendment stand.

On the motion to amend to exclude the part of the staff report dealing with changing the direction of the parking Messrs. Galster, Coleman, Butrum, Hawkins and Syfert voted aye. Messrs. Okum and Vanover voted no and the amendment was approved 5 to 2.

On the motion to approve the revision to the PUD all voted aye, and the approval was granted unanimously.

Mr. Syfert said so next month we will review the sign package.

Mr. Gilhart said to clarify, if he reduces the signage to the proper square footage etc. does he just go to the Building Department for a sign and package approval or does he come back here only in the case where he wants to stick with his package as is. My concern is that they plan on opening by November and if there is a contingency that could cause them a problem, it won’t happen until March of next year. If you can give them advice or tell them their alternatives, I would appreciate it.

Mr. McErlane reported the only way to come in and administratively do it under the premise that Mr. Gilhart suggested, the applicant would have to bring their square footage down to 148 square feet,
which is less than half what they proposed initially. If they were willing to do that, we could handle it administratively. Mr. Syfert added otherwise, we will see you next month.

Mr. Robinson asked if they should make a formal submittal or consider this to be placed on the agenda for next month. Mr. McErlane responded we would ask you to resubmit your sign package as you propose.





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C.    Approval of Sign Change – Freeway Pylon Sign – Commons Drive, Tri-County Commons

Dan Gibson of Kimco Realty Corporation said I am the Director of Real Estate for the Dayton Ohio office and we are here to present changing our sign.

Kimco is the owner of the Wal-Mart/Sam’s center that fronts Kemper Road by an easement entered into during the PUD in the development of the entire Tri-County Commons area. We have rights on our neighbor’s property to have the sign.

We are in the process of super sizing one of our existing tenants at Tri-County Commons and we will be working through the board. Part of what we have to do in order to get that done is work with some existing tenants who have rights that if we were to super size the store we need their consent.

The existing sign is as shown here, and the intent is to take it from three tenants to more of a multi-tenant board so that we can give our tenants exposure to the I-275 traffic.

The square footage is not changing and the existing box will remain. The only changes we are making is taking out a banner material and going in with a high impact polycarbonate which is the standard. It will be a clear face with vinyl letters on the face and a back light will shine through and you will be able to see the tenants. We are not changing the square footage or the footprint of the sign. It is a matter of freeing up some space so we can address some concerns that our existing tenant base has as we move forward in trying to fill our vacancies there.

Mr. McErlane reported that the property is zoned PUD and is part of the original Tri-County Commons PUD. The applicant is requesting to change the panels on the existing sign for the lower portion of the sign below the Dave & Buster’s logo.

To give you some history, the original PUD for Tri-County commons included a shopping center. On this portion of the site, which is considered Beltway Plaza, it was intended to remain as warehouse and light industrial.

The original PUD proposed by Duke and then picked up by North American Properties, included a pylon sign on the interstate that would service the shopping center behind the former candy plant property which is the property that Kimco owns.

Planning Commission and City Council approved that as part of the PUD in 1990. As the former Kroger candy plant was developed, there were requests for pylon signs. Planning Commission granted a pylon sign for Roberds Grand and when Dave & Buster’s came in and wanted their own pylon sign, Planning Commission said they had previously approved a pylon sign on the interstate. If you want your own pylon sign, you either get the rights to that sign from North American Properties or you make an agreement with them to allow you to use a portion of their sign, which is what they did.


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APPROVAL OF SIGN CHANGE – FREEWAY PYLON SIGN – COMMONS DR.

Mr. McErlane reported the way the agreement reads is that the shopping center owners have exclusive rights to that section of the sign below the Dave & Buster’s.

When Great Indoors came in and said they wanted their own pylon sign, Planning Commission said we’re not gong to give you another pylon sign, but if you would like to go to Kimco and negotiate with them for a portion of their panel on that sign, you are welcome to do so and we will consider it. That is as it stands today. The Great Indoors panel is on there and Kimco has exclusive rights to an easement agreement for that portion of the sign. What the applicant is proposing is to subdivide that section of the sign into multiple tenants.

Mr. Galster asked if they were going to use all the existing space for the shopping center behind the candy plant. Are you leaving any space at all for any of the tenants that now occupy the Beltway?

Mr. Gibson responded right now Sears Great Indoors is a license agreement that we granted them. It was a 10-year agreement and we had a provision that after the first year we could terminate on 30 days. Our priority is our center and being able to attract tenants. The visibility from I-275 is a carrot that we use. We have 4,300 feet there that has not been leased in about eight years. If we have to use it as a carrot, we will. Would I consent to entering into an agreement like we did with Sears? We definitely would, but ideally I would have to have some kind of recapture rights. My goal is to fill our center and make it as strong as I possibly can.

Mr. Galster commented right now you are showing six lines with the last one being split in half. The reality is Planning Commission didn’t want to have continued pylon signs out there and have told every tenant on the beltway to try to work it out.

Mr. Gibson answered I am willing to work with them. If I look at this today and based on where I am, there are two large tenants who will end up owning their own parcels that as of today, I have not granted rights to, nor do I want to. However, I’m not sure that they will make requests of me before we are done with the negotiations. I am sensitive to this fact, When I talked to Garden Ridge, they said our signage on the front will be more visible than your pylon. There is perception and there is reality and the reality is that due to tree growth, most of those panels are not visible six or seven months a year.

Mr. Okum so based on this plan, this super size business is not allocated space on this sign. Mr. Gibson answered as of today it is not, but if you’ll notice, the top two panels are available.

Mr. Okum commented I would hate to see the sign chopped up into twenty different businesses. If they are big square foot holders in your center, that is appropriate and as a commissioner at that time, I understood the reason for that.


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APPROVAL OF SIGN CHANGE – FREEWAY PYLON SIGN – COMMONS DR.

Mr. Okum added I certainly understand the square footage issue with H.H. Gregg and David’s Bridal because they are big space users in your development. On the other hand, I don’t think Jack’s Pet and Aquarium is a viable icon to have on this beltway sign. I would like to see you set a minimum square footage occupant standard before they could even be considered by this commission as part of the sign package.

Mr. Gibson responded if you look at our proposed signage, I would like to say that I don’t see us going any smaller than what we have here. The only thing I could possibly see is maybe consolidation of two panels to one panel so we could give somebody a little more bang for his buck.

I would agree. The bottom panels are small and we have traffic going 65 miles per hour. It is not my belief that it will give them a lot of bang for their buck. The 4,300 s.f. tenant, the inside space that we have had vacant for a while, if I could entice somebody by promising signage on I-275, whether or not it is useful, I would like the ability to do that to get another active retailer in the center. I don’t want to go any smaller on any of these other panels and potentially I would like the ability to consolidate maybe two of the panels into one larger one. The old Office Max space that is perpendicular to Kemper is challenging for us and I have those two top panels available to maybe entice somebody by using that as a carrot. We have it and we’d really like to use it.

Mr. Okum said the only comment I have regarding the panels is we want it to have a wide space between the tenant identifications to give it some reveal. There are a number of beltway and interstate sign packages that have separated. This turned out to be one big old box.

I understand you are going to the Lucite panels, but I would like to see a neutral tone between them that falls away and that is wider than one or two inches. I know it cuts down a little on sign space, but it would give it a little more depth and dimension between the tenant spaces. If you could break it up and have something beside the dark blue and get some neutral fall away color between those panels, it would be better.

Mr. Gibson responded so you would prefer that it be more blend away rather than stand out. Mr. Okum said fall away, a depth, give it that recessed look. Mr. Gibson commented I’m not sure if you go with a lighter color it will blend more with the white face. Mr. Okum said I am not a sign person, but right now it is pretty stark, a big box. Mr. Gibson responded it is a big box and it is what we were dealt with and is a function of using the metal dividers to create the separation. Mr. Okum commented you could create depth on those metal dividers. Recessing them in the box a little bit you could create separations. Mr. Gibson added the lexicon faces are held up by those separators. I can ask the sign guy about that, but I am not sure.

Mr. Okum added I think it needs something to break up that big box effect. I would support limiting it to no more than seven panels.
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APPROVAL OF SIGN CHANGE – FREEWAY PYLON SIGN – COMMONS DR.

Mr. Galster commented right now I believe that box is one sign, and the center item is in there to block light from traveling into the upper section. So when that site was lit, the lower section was lit and the top wasn’t based on that divider. So you are going to put in an illuminated extrusion of some type and divide this up into six spots.

Mr. Gibson responded there won’t be complete separation from one side of the sign to the other. What will happen is when we have vacant tenants, they will show through as vacant. Mr. Galster said so you would have white blank backlit signs. Mr. Gibson answered
until we fill them. Mr. Okum commented we have them painted out at Cassinelli Square and it looks great. Mr. Galster added you’ll end up with white glowing panels if there is no tenant on them. I don’t like that look. That is why we originally suggested individual panels so they can be controlled separately. Mr. Gibson responded that would involve taking the entire box down.

Mr. Galster said right now it’s bad enough to see a blank space and when you see a blank space lit up, it’s going to look even blanker. Mr. Gibson answered the intent is to fill it with tenants. It is fairly acceptable across the city and across the country to have the tenants go out. Do I agree that black paint is the appropriate way to do it? No, but when tenants leave you have a vacancy and that sometimes is what catches peoples’ eye as they are driving down I-275, note the great visibility and find the center and who owns it.

Mr. Galster responded I would rather see you give the aquarium some sign time as opposed to seeing a big blank white spot in the middle of that sign. So I am a little concerned about limiting it to square footage, because I would rather see them out there advertised and not look at lit white panels.

Mr. Okum agreed adding that the way the signs at Cassinelli have been blacked out is an atrocity. It looks bad for the center, and doesn’t entice me to go in there. White is better than the magic marker over the name of the business.

From the audience Mayor Webster suggested that he put something to promote the center instead of a blank panel. Mr. Gibson commented I would love to get our name up there with a for lease as the center name.

About 18 months ago we approached all of our tenants to see who would like to go on here; it was a cost that they didn’t see the benefit of. It is not as cheap as you might think; the sign face is inexpensive but the frame rental adds up quickly.

Mr. Galster suggested adding now leasing information to fill the spaces until you have other tenants. If you end up with an unfilled spot, have a black out panel there so at least there isn’t this big white box there.

Mr. Gibson said once we are at the point where we are leased out, the two largest tenants in the center have not demanded to be on here. I would like to put them on here, because it is a draw to the center and adds value to the center and to the city.
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APPROVAL OF SIGN CHANGE – FREEWAY PYLON SIGN – COMMONS DR.

Mr. Gibson stated I would like to have the ability to put a for lease panel in one of them. Ultimately as I get leased, if I don’t have them filled I will approach tenants and charge them whatever they want to pay the cost to put the sign up and be a part of it.

Mr. Coleman suggested a promotional break for the tenants to get their names up there, rather than leaving it blank. Mr. Gibson responded we had approached tenants, and the cost to take that existing space today and carve it up was the hurdle with previous tenants. It is not cheap, so as we proceed with our redevelopment, we’re going to take on the expense of doing that. It becomes a matter of a tenant paying for the crane to put the sign up.

Ms. McBride said I think it is really important from a leasing standpoint that the tenants in the Kimco center get as many ideas as they can up there because you can see Garden Ridge from I-275. No matter if it is seven or five or three panels, they should be allowed to do that.

Mr. Okum commented what worries me more than anything are the stark white panel and the tenant who moved out and we took the magic marker and paint over his name. I think that should be prohibited from this sign, period. If there is a vacancy, another identity must be placed in that panel or a blackout panel.

Mr. Gibson responded I would suggest that we make up two signs, one is a for lease sign and the other would be a panel that highlights the name Tri-County Commons.

Mr. Galster said I would like to allow this applicant to do this and limit the number but they either need to be full or have a blackout panel that is white or a matching color, not painting it black so that is not a lit up white box.

Mr. Gibson responded I have no objections to that. To keep it consistent so that it is white white white, and then there would be a white one that would be so opaque that it wouldn’t allow light to come through. I’m going to guess that during the daylight it would show as a different color. I‘ll have to ask. If it can be worked out so we can have lights off and on behind each panel that might work.

Mr. Vanover said typically eight-foot fluorescent tubes are as long as you go. We had the bottom lit and the top not lit, so there are at least two circuits in there. While they are reworking the sign, why couldn’t they put two circuits and the panels could be jockeyed so when you have vacancies occur, the lower levels could go dark?

Mr. Galster said the tenants wouldn’t want to shift back and forth. They will end up signing a lease to identify where on the sign they would go. Mr. Gibson added unfortunately I can’t tell them most of the time. Some might request the bottom panel because it is closer to eye level for traffic on I-275.

Mr. Vanover commented it is the same as putting blackout panels in because he will have to hire a crane and operator to do this for a vacant tenant.
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PAGE TWENTY-SEVEN

APPROVAL OF SIGN CHANGE – FREEWAY PYLON SIGN – COMMONS DR.

Mr. McErlane said concerning how panels are placed in or removed from that sign, do you have total control of that, or does the tenant have the ability to put a panel in there?

Mr. Gibson answered typically we require our tenants to rid the sign of their name as they vacate. For most tenants that is a secondary thought and I don’t like somebody going up there with a black roller brush and painting over it.

If the City would like, I would like to go back to your suggestion and ask our sign company if there is a panel we would manufacture and have on hand to slide in there as vacancies come up.

Mr. Galster moved to allow the change as presented by the applicant with the following conditions:

1. All faces be of similar background color
2. Should there be empty spaces a blackout type of material should be used that prohibits the light from shining through and keep the panel the same color.
3. Every effort should be made to have all panels filled with some sort of tenant identification.
4. Leasing information or shopping center identification may be included in acceptable graphics on any of the faces, understanding that the ultimate goal is to have panel faces full.

Mr. Okum seconded the motion.

Mr. Okum said for clarity your blackout means not black paint on the outside.     Mr. Galster said I said that blackout panel shall be such that does not allow white to come through but still maintains the same background color from the outside.

Mr. Gibson said since I am not a sign expert, can we work with staff to run those ideas by? I think the idea is that it would be opaque enough so as not to allow light to shine through it, but would blend with the rest of the sign. I just don’t know if that is available to us, and I would like to check with our sign company to find out their options and present them to staff. I do understand what you are looking for.

On the motion to approve, all voted aye and the approval was granted unanimously.

C. Dedication Plat for Right of Way on Crescentville Road (Crossings at the Park)

Mr. Shvegzda stated what we have here is a dedication plat for right of way on Crescentville Road. As a part of the original PUD approval of the Crossings at the Park and a part of the covenants, they indicated they would dedicate a 20-foot strip of right of way and the streetscape landscape easement at the corner when either the retail detail plans came through or we received funding for the improvements on Crescentville Road.


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DEDICATION PLAT FOR RIGHT OF WAY ON CRESCENTVILLE ROAD

Mr. Shvegzda reported we have received funding through ODOT, so the dedication plat has been prepared and submitted. The GE Park Board has signed off on it and it is before Planning Commission tonight for approval.

Mr. Galster moved to approve and Mr. Vanover seconded the motion. By voice vote, all voted aye, and the approval was granted unanimously.

VI. DISCUSSION

Mr. Galster said on the requested change of the Planning
Commission from a Regional Planning Commission to the Hamilton County Planning Commission, this board sent a recommendation to Council to deny that change. Council affirmed that denial 7-0 and referred it back to Planning so Planning has to submit their ballot.

Mr. McErlane reported they want you to approve a resolution, and they don’t say what to do if you don’t agree with it. My suggestion is that we draft a letter that says that Planning Commission and Council agreed that we are not in support of this resolution. Mr. Syfert directed Mr. McErlane to draft a letter.

VII. CHAIRMAN’S REPORT

VIII. ADJOURNMENT

Mr. Vanover moved to adjourn and Mr. Galster seconded the motion. By voice vote all voted aye, and Planning Commission adjourned at 9:42 p.m.

                    Respectfully submitted,



__________________,2006    _________________________
                    William G. Syfert, Chairman



__________________,2006    _________________________
                    Lawrence Hawkins III Secretary