BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING MINUTES
16 JANUARY 2007
7:00 P.M.


I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:01 p.m. by Chairman David Okum.

II. ROLL CALL

Members Present:        Bob Weidlich, Bill Reichert, Jim Squires,
                Jane Huber, Bob Emerson, Marge Harlow
                And Chairman Okum

Others Present:        Randy Campion, Inspection Supervisor

III. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE


IV. MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING OF 19 DECEMBER 2006

Mr. Squires moved to approve and Mrs. Huber seconded the motion. All voted aye and the Minutes were adopted unanimously.

V. CORRESPONDENCE

A. Zoning Bulletin – December 10, 206
B. Zoning Bulletin – December 24, 2006
C. Zoning Bulletin – Special Issue
D. Zoning Bulletin Index – January-December, 2006
E. Planning Commission Meeting Minutes – December 12, 2006

VI. REPORTS

A. Report on Council – Jim Squires

Mr. Squires reported that Bob Coleman has left the Planning Commission to serve on the Civil Service Commission. Council will name his replacement tomorrow night.

Report on Planning Commission – David Okum

Planning met January 9th and reviewed tree replacement for Jake Sweeney property. The City and the applicant worked together to make the tree replanting plan and Planning approved. Rooster’s Restaurant was in for approval of their facility at the old Bob Evans Restaurant. They will put in a cooler and paint the building beige. Springdale Station (old Thriftway) presented a new façade. They are updating the front of the building and O’Reilly Auto Parts is taking 40% of the building. They will increase the island size and make a green area along Kemper Road. The major red element behind the O’Reilly sign was turned down since red is supposed to be an accent color only. The electronic sign legislation was approved and referred to Council. It will only affect the PUD properties along the interstate.

Mrs. Huber commented that bus riders park in the front of that property. Mr. Okum responded yes, and there still will be room for them to park.

VII. CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT AND SWEARING IN OF APPLICANTS
BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING MINUTES
16 JANUARY 2007
PAGE TWO

VIII. OLD BUSINESS

IX. NEW BUSINESS

A. Approval of variance to allow the construction of a 24’ x 30’ detached garage at 514 Lafayette Avenue. Said variance is requested from Section 153.105(B) “The garage shall have..a maximum floor area of 600 s.f.”

Joe Wellman, owner of 514 Lafayette Avenue said I need a 24’ x 30’ garage and I would appreciate help from the commission, and I will abide by the variance 100%.

Mr. Campion reported that the requested 720 s.f. garage would replace the existing 294 s.f. garage. The Zoning Code limits garage size to 600 s.f. so the request is a 20% increase over what is permitted.

The property lot size is 10,920 s.f. The existing residence has 1,296 s.f. of habitable area and the total lot coverage of structures with the proposed garage would be 18.5%.

The applicant requested a 960 s.f. garage in December which the board denied. This garage is 25% smaller than that one.

The applicant has not indicated what unusual circumstances or practical difficulties regarding the property warrant the oversized garage. The applicant has indicated on the application form that he will be storing his travel trailer in the proposed garage.

Mr. Okum opened the public hearing.

Roland Fries of 11502 Rose Lane said I believe Mr. Wellman would like to have the garage to store his trailer and various other items. The point in the letter indicated that the building would appear to be an eyesore. We are not widening the building and from Kemper Road you will not see any more. All you will get is a six-foot depth which would be insignificant from Kemper Road.

No one else came forward, and Mr. Okum closed the public hearing.

Mr. Squires asked if the letter should be read into the record and Mr. Okum responded it is at your discretion. Mr. Squires moved that the letter of January 10, 2007 be a part of the record, and Mr. Emerson seconded the motion. By voice vote, there were six ayes and one abstention.

Mrs. Huber read the letter:

“Dear Board Members:

Thank you for letting me know about the above variance request.

I am again unable to attend the hearing because I have to work. I hope you will accept my written comments regarding the variance for a 720 square foot garage requested by the owner of 514 Lafayette.
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16 JANUARY 2007
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IX A 24’ X 30’ DETACHED GARAGE AT 514 LAFAYETTE AVENUE – continued

        January 10, 2007 Letter to BZA – continued

“While this request is smaller than the previous request for a 960 square foot garage, I still see it a overly large for the densely built neighborhood. The limit of 600 square feet is fairly common, and does not seem unreasonable to me. This is of course a personal opinion. Of more relevance is the fact that the request does not meet the standards for approval of a variance as defined in the Springdale Zoning Code Section 153.710. Even if the lot at5 14 Lafayette were unique in size, shape, topography or proximity to incompatible uses or development, thus justifying a variance under item153.710 (B) (1) that is not the issue here. Rather, the owner is seeking a variance that would be required regardless of the lot conditions. Therefore, the request specifically goes against item153.710 (B) (4).

Given these facts, that at least two of the four conditions in153.710 (B) are not met and all four are necessary for approval, I shoe that you will uphold the code and deny this variance request.

If for some reason you choose to approve this variance request, I hope that you will impose strict requirements on the design of the garage so that it blends into the neighborhood.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Susan Roschke
500 West Kemper Road
Springdale OH 45246”

Mr. Okum said Mr. Wellman you have heard the letter. Do you have any comments? Mr. Wellman responded I don’t know why she would object, when there are others that are very big. There is a big concrete block garage that was built many years ago without going through the Board of Zoning Appeals.

Mr. Wellman added going from Route 4 down Kemper Road east there have been many garages going up. Their lots are bigger than mine, but four to five have gone up in the last two to three years. I am just asking that you be nice enough to let me go ahead with this request.

Mrs. Huber asked if the travel trailer and the car could be put side by side in a regular 600-foot garage. Mr. Fries of 11502 Rose Lane said widthwise, the 24 feet is sufficient but lengthwise, the trailer would not go into the garage because it is 28 feet.

Mrs. Harlow said the question was if the 600 foot garage could handle the three items. Mr. Wellman answered it is just a trailer and one truck that will go in there. Mrs. Harlow asked if there was one door or two doors on the previous submission. Mr. Wellman answered I had two doors and decided that with one big door would be easier to get in and out. Mrs. Harlow asked the overall height of the building and Mr. Wellman answered about 16 feet.
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16 JANUARY 2007
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IX A 24’ X 30’ DETACHED GARAGE AT 514 LAFAYETTE AVENUE – continued

Mrs. Harlow commented it looks very industrial for a highly dense neighborhood. Have you thought about adding screening? Mr. Wellman answered after it is constructed, I am planning to plant trees around it. Mrs. Harlow added in order for you to do this, you need this 18 foot garage door, and I really have a problem with that in this densely populated neighborhood; it will be very noticeable.

Mr. Weidlich said I share the concern about this being a very industrial appearing building, and suggested siding this with asphalt shingles to blend in?

Mr. Okum said the applicant has presented a photograph and section out of the Reach Magazine for each member. Mr. Weidlich said this says painted metal roof and painted metal siding. Mr. Wellman responded it is not that. Mr. Weidlich wondered if he was saying that it will be siding similar to his home. Mr. Wellman showed the colors and materials. Mr. Weidlich commented it will be vertical metal siding, and this being a big structure with long walls, would you put windows in it. Mr. Wellman answered I could; I’ll take that into consideration and see what we can do with windows. Mr. Weidlich commented that would break up the length.

Mr. Weidlich asked if the shed would remain and Mr. Wellman answered if possible. I put my lawn care stuff in it and I would like to have it.

Mr. Reichert said if you took your garage you would have concrete all the way through it and you would have to widen it and have concrete on the new garage. Mr. Wellman responded I will put all new concrete from the end of my driveway into the new garage. Mr. Reichert said it is a longer garage. Mr. Wellman said the camper will be in on the left hand side and the truck will be on the right hand side.

Mr. Reichert wondered if the 24 foot width is a unit size that this barn comes in and Mr. Wellman answered that he did not know. He measured and said that width would be okay for the two items I want to put in there.

Mrs. Harlow said on the front page of the site plan it says a new 24’ x 24’. On page 3 of the drawing it says the roof will be painted metal. I thought we were talking about shingled roof. Mr. Okum said the applicant indicated that it could be a shingled roof.

Mrs. Harlow said the 24’ side would be facing Lafayette Avenue and the 30 foot would be running toward Kemper Road. With the 24 feet, you would not have enough room for two garage doors. Mr. Wellman said that he wouldn’t because it would be inconvenient getting in and out. One door was recommended by the manufacturer.

Mrs. Huber said whether he gets the variance or not I am so happy to see he wishes to put this camper-trailer into the structure. They look awful setting outside.


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16 JANUARY 2007
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IX A 24’ X 30’ DETACHED GARAGE AT 514 LAFAYETTE AVENUE – continued

Mr. Squires asked if he would be allowed to keep his shed with this sized garage. Mr. Campion responded if you grant a variance, he can keep the shed.

Mr. Okum commented there have been situations where the board has restricted a variance to include the removal of the other existing elements on the property.   

Mr. Okum added I believe there are none of the conditions for a variance that have been met. On the other hand, the applicant does have a lot that is 10,920 s.f., and some properties in the community are much smaller. The garage is extremely industrial and commercial looking and does not have a residential character. As much as he intends to put the trailer into the garage, it is still not required by code that he do that. The applicant could leave the trailer where it is and place other things in the 24’ x 30’ garage.

That makes it a difficult situation. I have not seen anything that presents any conditions of hardship except for the fact that he would like to make things look better. It is a good idea to put the trailer into the garage, but we could not make him do that or hold him to that. Based on that, and because he does not meet any of the standards for a variance, at this point I will not be supporting the request. I wish I could say something different.

When the City looks at the Zoning Code, I would recommend that council representatives for Planning Commission change our code to allow larger storage units on larger lots, but I cannot support this request at this time. Mr. Squires reported we have brought the oversized lots up to Council and it is on their agenda somewhere.

Addressing the applicant, Mr. Okum said you can build a 24’ x 26’ garage and almost be within code right now (624 s.f.). Mr. Wellman commented if I can’t get the 24’ x 30’ I will have to do that. Mrs. Harlow said you could do that and not have to come back to this board. Just go to the Building Department to get your permit. Or you could wait to see what the city comes up with on some of these oversized pieces of property. It is on the front burner. It is not fair for us to say to someone who has an oversized lot that they can have only 120 s.f. shed.

Mr. Okum said Planning is waiting for a recommendation from this board on things that they find in this code that are troublesome. We have had a number of situations in the community.

Mr. Campion said the code says that you are allowed to build your main structure and the accessory building cannot total more than 35% of your lot size. He is proposing 18 ½%, but still does not meet what is required by the district.

Mr. Okum added 20’ x 30’ is 600 s.f. and you would not need a variance. Mr. Wellman responded I would rather go 600 s.f. and forget the trailer. I’ll see what I can do and come up to the Building Department.


BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING MINUTES
16 JANUARY 2007
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IX A 24’ X 30’ DETACHED GARAGE AT 514 LAFAYETTE AVENUE – continued

Mr. Okum asked the applicant if he wanted the board to vote on the request or did he want to remove the item from the agenda. Mr. Wellman said I would like to have a vote.

Mr. Reichert commented we have talked about 20’ x 30’. If you wanted to make it 22’ x 27’ that totals 594 s.f. and you would not need a variance. When you do horizontal siding it looks softer and not so industrial.

Mr. Fries asked if one option would be to construct the building with different materials, not use vertical siding and add windows to make it more appealing to the residents. Would that be favorable enough to give him the 24’ x 30’ garage.

Mr. Okum said I think the applicant gave evidence that he could make the trailer fit in a smaller garage. Residential Character would be a big improvement, but there have not been conditions that have been met to warrant this variance. The other possibility for the applicant is to wait and see what happens with City Council. I would encourage that rather than a variance that stays with the property forever.

Mr. Okum added a 22’ x 27’ garage is under 600 s.f. Mr. Fries said the trailer is 20 feet in length. The industrial look appears to be what the board is objecting to.

Mrs. Harlow said I think it looks very industrial. I would like to see him go to 600 s.f. or hold off until the City can adjust for oversized properties and accessory buildings.

Mr., Squires moved to grant the variance to allow the construction of a 720 s.f. garage. Mr. Reichert seconded the motion.

All members voted no, and the variance was denied by seven negative votes.

X. DISCUSSION

A. Revised Board of Zoning Appeals Application

Mr. Okum said Mr. McErlane’s mother passed away this morning so he is not with us tonight, and I would not want to get into a lot of discussion.

I have some suggested revisions to the questionnaire and want to share that with the rest of the board and have you look them over. In blue are additions or changes to the existing wording and in yellow are the questions. There are some sections in the requirements that a resident could not fulfill, like a plot plan.

Next month, let’s plan on going through this. I would like to address lot sizes and storage buildings and garages at the next meting.




BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING MINUTES
16 JANUARY 2007
PAGE SEVEN

XI. ADJOURNMENT

Mr. Squires moved to adjourn and Mr. Reichert seconded the motion. By voice vote all voted aye, and the Board of Zoning Appeals adjourned at 8:10 p.m.

                    Respectfully submitted,



___________________,2007    __________________________
                    David Okum, Chairman



___________________,2007    __________________________
                    Jane Huber, Secretary