PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING
December 13, 2011
7:00 P.M.


I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Chairman Don Darby.


II. ROLL CALL

Members Present: Carolyn Ghantous, David Okum, Richard Bauer, Robert Diehl, Tom Vanover, Marge Boice, and Don Darby
   
Others Present: Don Shvegzda, City Engineer; Anne McBride, City Planner; William McErlane, Building Official

   
III. SWEARING IN OF SPRINGDALE PLANNING COMMISSION MEMBERS

Mayor Webster: All of you need to be sworn in to take the oath of office.
(At this time the Planning Commission Members: Mr. Don Darby,
Mr. David Okum, Mr. Richard Bauer, Mr. Thomas Vanover, Mr. Robert Diehl, Mrs. Carolyn Ghantous and Mrs. Marge Boice stood and raised their right hands and were sworn in by Mayor Webster).


IV. MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF NOVEMBER 8, 2011

(Mr. Okum moved to accept the minutes of the November 8, 2011 Planning Commission Meeting; Mr. Vanover seconded the motion and with 5 “aye” votes the minutes were accepted; Marge Boice and Robert Diehl abstained as they were not present at the November meeting.)


V. REPORT ON COUNCIL

No report on Council presented at this meeting.


VI. ELECTION OF OFFICERS FOR THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE PLANNING COMMISSION

NOMINATIONS FOR CITY OF SPRINGDALE PLANNING CHAIRMAN
Chairman Darby: The Chair will accept nominations for the position of Chair for Planning Commission.

Mrs. Boice: I would like to nominate Mr. Darby, I think he has done a wonderful job of Chairing and giving all of us ample opportunity to state our facts and our questions; it would be my pleasure to nominate him.
(Mr. Okum seconded the nomination and a unanimous “aye” vote was received from the Planning Commission Members.)
Chairman Darby: It has been moved and seconded that Don Darby be appointed Chair.
(No additional nominations were brought forward.)
Mr. Okum: I move that nominations be closed.
(Mr. Vanover seconded the motion and with a unanimous affirmative vote from all of the Planning Commission Members the nominations were closed and Mr. Don Darby was named to continue as the Springdale Planning Commission Chairman.)

NOMINATIONS FOR CITY OF SPRINGDALE PLANNING VICE-CHAIRMAN
Chairman Darby: I will now accept nominations for the position of Vice-Chair for the Springdale Planning Commission.
Mr. Vanover: I would bring the name of Dave Okum as Vice-Chair.
(Mrs. Boice seconded the nomination of Dave Okum for Planning Vice-Chair and a unanimous affirmative vote was received from all of the Planning Commission Members.)
(No additional nominations were brought forward.)
Mrs. Boice: I will move that nominations be closed for the Vice-Chair position.
(Mr. Vanover seconded the motion and with a unanimous affirmative vote from all of the Planning Commission Members the nominations were closed and
Mr. David Okum was named to continue as the Planning Commission Vice-Chairman.)

NOMINATIONS FOR CITY OF SPRINGDALE PLANNING SECRETARY
Chairman Darby: We will move on to the position of Secretary for Springdale’s Planning Commission.
Mr. Vanover: I would like to bring forth the name of Rich Bauer to continue as Secretary.
(Mrs. Boice seconded the nomination and a unanimous “aye” vote was received from the Planning Commission Members.)
(No additional nominations were brought forward and Mr. Richard Bauer was named as the Secretary for the Planning Commission.)

NOMINATIONS FOR CITY OF SPRINGDALE LIAISON TO BZA
Chairman Darby: The next appointment would be for liaison to the Board of Zoning Appeals.
Mr. Vanover: I would like to bring forth the name of Carolyn Ghantous to be the liaison to the BZA.
(Mrs. Boice seconded the nomination and a unanimous “aye” vote from the Planning Commission Members was received.
(No additional nominations were brought forward and Carolyn Ghantous was named as the BZA liaison to the Planning Commission.)

Chairman Darby: Congratulations to everyone and we look forward to a very productive year.



VII. CORRESPONDENCE

(No correspondence presented for this meeting.)


VIII. OLD BUSINESS

A. Chairman Darby: We will now move on to Old Business. Minor Improvements Requiring Planning Commission Approval for a wall sign at Cincy Mattress located at 11750 Commons Drive.

Mr. Kenneth Paul: I am the President and the owner of Front Room Furnishings which does business as Cincy Mattress and I am here tonight with Jerry Quinn who is a fellow-owner of our company; together we also own the real estate company which owns the building at 11750 Commons Drive. This is the second time we have presented our sign and we have made a few revisions to it at the suggestion of Commission Members. More importantly, thanks to the Commission, we have been able to erect a temporary sign that is the same dimensions as the permanent sign we are proposing. Hopefully the Members of the Commission have had an opportunity to see the sign. I have brought a few pictures with me this evening.
(At this time Mr. Paul gave pictures to the Commission Members to look at.) The permanent sign is a halo letter, neon backlit sign much like our Front Room sign which is on the south side of the building and that is included in your photos, as well. A couple of changes that we have made to the sign from the last time we proposed it was that we reduced the size of the background of the sign 18”. I believe it was Mr. Okum’s suggestion that we sort of outline the “U” on the sign before in order to reduce the total square footage. I notice that you do have a new Member of the Commission so perhaps it is a good idea for me to review. Front Room Furnishings is a Columbus based company and we own the real estate at 11750 Commons Drive when it was occupied as a Sofa Express. When they went bankrupt that left the building dark for the better part of two years. Last July, 18 months ago, we opened a Front Room Furnishing store in that same space. We are in the Front Room Furnishing business in Columbus Ohio with a number of locations there today. This was our first move into the market and we put signs up on the north and south side of the building, indicating Front Room Furnishings. This was considerably less sign package than what we had before with our previous tenant, Sofa Express. There was a bar left on the building that is kind of the north-west side angle that the previous Sofa Express sign mounted to, rather than incur the expense of removing that sign from the building we left it blank with the Commission’s approval in hopes of securing an additional tenant. Front Room Furnishing did not occupy 100% of the building. We went the better part of fifteen months without finding that additional tenant and we decided to get a new venture to fill the remaining square footage ourselves and that is where Cincy Mattress comes from. Cincy Mattress is fully owned by Front Room Furnishings, LLC. It is unusual in that we feature mattresses that are actually manufactured here in Cincinnati. The other thing that the Cincy Mattress does is add life to that north side of our building which is the side that faces the freeway; previously that side was vacant and it sort of gave the illusion that our store was empty from the freeway with people driving by and we have seen a nice reaction to that. The temporary sign went up November 10th and on November 11th we opened the Cincy Mattress Store and we have seen a nice increase in terms of traffic coming into that building; it has given new life to the north side of our building and we think it is going to help our entity as a whole there. The reason for the proportions of the sign is that naturally we want to maximize our signage but we also are attempting to hide that beam; that beam is 50’ in width and the backdrop of our sign is exactly that 50’ to kind of hide the length of the beam. The sign itself is only 45’ long but we felt it was important to hide that beam in its entirety. The Cincy Mattress sign is really more of a northwest to west facing sign as opposed to the Front Room Furnishing sign that faces directly north. I know there was some concern about the two signs fighting each other and really we don’t believe they do. I ask the Commission to approve our sign package.

Mr. McErlane: The one thing we have a question about is relative to the letter make-up; there is a description of it that talks about reverse channel letters but I am not sure if the Cincy part of that is reverse channel letters or if that is typical channel letters with red face?

Mr. Kenneth Paul: It is my understanding it is reversed much like the sign on the other side of the building with a halo-effect lighting, but it is red neon behind it, as opposed to the white.

Mr. McErlane: And the face would be painted red for the Cincy and black for the Mattress part of it?

Mr. Kenneth Paul: That is correct.

    (At this time Mr. McErlane read his comments.)

Mr. Okum: Just a question in regards to the existing temporary sign that you have up there; is the white element that you see 7’-6” or is it larger than that?

Mr. Kenneth Paul: I think it is 7’-6”; it was meant to be that. We attempted to trim it even further but because of the nature of the canopy that is under a percentage of the sign, we couldn’t get it any lower without that “Y” running into the canopy. When we originally proposed it we were trying to cut the background further but we were unable to because that would lower sign down and the “Y” would be on top of that canopy.

Mr. Okum: I tend to agree and in addition I think that one aspect that isn’t obvious by the temporary sign is the white background is actually a solid non-translucent material so it is not going to be over illuminated. I had some concern if it, because a box sign with a white background and a lot of light could have been overwhelming. You can see it pretty much all the way across that whole section of 275; it definitely makes a mark on the expressway.

Mr. Bauer: The temporary sign is the actual size of the new sign?

Mr. Kenneth Paul: It is, yes. We believe it is and that was the instruction given to our sign maker. I know the length is the same because it exactly covers the beam; but if it is not it is within a few inches.

Mr. Bauer: Proportionally, as I drive by in the morning, to me it seems a little bit out of proportion to the Front Room sign; it looks a lot bigger. Are you comfortable with that proportion?

Mr. Kenneth Paul: We are. The thing to keep in mind is that we have still proportioned a lot more signage to the Front Room side of that business and it has got a sign on the south side of the building that is pretty much the same size as the Cincy Mattress sign plus the north side of the building that you are comparing it to plus the featured position on that pylon sign; we feel that it is proportionate and we feel it is the right thing to do. Even though it is not occupying the same square footage that Front Room is occupying, it is like it is that side of the building; that building has a distinct north side and a south side and the signage of the Cincy Mattress brings that north side to life.

Mr. Okum: Mr. Chairman, I would like to make a motion to approve the requested sign package presented by Cincy Mattress based upon the drawing submitted dated 10/20/2011 and attached to our packet.
(Mrs. Boice seconded the motion and with a unanimous affirmative vote from the Planning Commission Members the signage request for Cincy Mattress was approved.)


B. Chairman Darby: I will move on to Item B, Minor Revision to PUD Plan for Signage and Exterior Elevation Modifications for Hobby Lobby at 11711 Princeton Pike.

    Mr. McErlane: Mr. Chairman, I received an email from Mr. John Gilhart on December 5th, asking for his application to be tabled until the January 2012 meeting.

    Mr. Okum: So moved to table.
    (Mr. Vanover seconded the motion to table the item and with a unanimous “aye” vote from the Planning Commission Members, the request to table was approved.)


C. Chairman Darby: Item C is Final PUD Plan for an Outdoor Advertising Device at 11752 Commons Drive.

Mr. McErlane: Mr. Chairman, I received an email from Mr. Thomas Fahey of Lamar on December 1st, asking to be tabled until the January 2012 meeting.

Mr. Okum: I move to table the item.
    (Mr. Vanover seconded the motion to table the item and with a unanimous “aye” vote from the Planning Commission Members, the request to table was approved.)


   
IX. NEW BUSINESS

    Chairman Darby: We do not have any New Business for this meeting.



X. DISCUSSION
   
    (No items for discussion presented at this meeting.)


XI. CHAIRMAN’S REPORT

Chairman Darby: We did have three signs that were approved. Our next meeting is scheduled for January 10, 2012.


   
XII. ADJOURNMENT

Mr. Vanover moved to adjourn; Mrs. Boice seconded and with seven affirmative
votes from the Planning Commission Members, the meeting adjourned at
7:29 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

________________________, 2011 ___________________________________
            Don Darby, Chairman


________________________, 2011 ___________________________________
                Richard Bauer, Secretary