MAY 20, 1997

7:00 P.M.




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



Members Present: Thomas Schecker, James squires, David Okum,

Barbara Ewing and Chairman William Mitchell

Members Absent: Councilwomen Marge Boice & Kathy McNear

Others Present: Richard Lohbeck, Building Inspector


Mr. Squires moved for adoption and Mr. Okum seconded the motion. By voice vote, all present voted aye, and the Minutes were approved with five affirmative votes.


A. Planning Commission Meeting Minutes - 8 April 1997

B. 4/17/97 Letter to A. G. Hauck from William K. McErlane

C. 5/6/97 Memo from William McErlane with Regional Planning

Commission Information


A. Report on Council Activities - Marge Boice - no report

B. Report on Planning Commission - David Okum

Mr. Okum stated that Judith Muehlenhard of Pine Garden request for screened in patios and decks which was tabled from 4/8/97 was considered. Planning had requested final site grade plans because the development came in at a different elevation than what was originally submitted and approved by the City. We still have not received those and final approval has not been given by Mr. Shvegzda of CDS. The issue regarding the screened in porches was tabled until June. Planning did act on plat approval for Units 7 8 12 and 13 only. This allows them to record that. It was a 5-1 vote, and Mr. Galster voted no.

There was a concept discussion of a proposed Holiday Inn Express at 12037 Sheraton Lane (prior Pizza Hut). Mr. Patel did a fine job of taking Planning Commissionís comments and brought a plan that was within range and able to be worked with. That was referred to Council with a 6-0 vote for consideration.

Wal-Mart requested approval for a garden center addition at 600 Kemper Commons Circle. They will be adding 4500 square feet of enclosed garden area, similar to the existing garden center. It will be located to the northwest portion of their existing garden center so it is an increase in size. They will put landscaping material and plantings out in front to break it, and it was approved 7-0.

Rebecca Crowe & Jason W. Paul requested transfer of a variance to allow partial conversion of a garage at 478 Maple Circle Drive. This was referred to their Condominium Association and their Board of Trustees who voted against the continuation of the variance.

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Mr. Okum added that a temporary variance was granted for the conversion of a garage into an office with the understanding that the owner would change that out in the event of a move. At the request of the applicants Planning tabled this to June 10th so they could talk to the homeowners and the association and try to get their blessing on the continuation.

There was a concept discussion of a proposed Target Store at Century Boulevard and East Kemper Road. Several residents from McClellans Lane were present, and they spoke before the Commission along with the applicant. The traffic study along Kemper Road and S.R. 747 has not been completed so there are no true traffic counts but it was a concept discussion. The intent is to convert the R-1-A residential area on Kemper Road, including four parcels of single family residences along McClellans Lane into a commercial development. That discussion lasted probably about two hours . There was good dialogue between the applicant and Planning. We had questions on how they would isolate that last area along McClellans and that is how it was left.

Calvary Pentecostal Church requested preliminary plan approval of their proposed church and school at 11970 Kenn Road. They have been in Springdale 23 years and they will build a very attractive church and school to accommodate 100 students, the same number they have now. There will be an outbuilding, a youth building. It was a very nice presentation. Some changes were recommended and it was approved 6-0 with the outbuilding being turned into a brick structure.

Doug and Arlene Eadesí architect was at Planning with a new plan for Charing Cross Phase 1 revised. That plan was totally different again, two car garages, three bedroom units, two level, much roof and a lot of brick; very attractive looking buildings. That was referred to Council for their consideration.

There was an item under discussion concerning parking of RVís and that was approved and referred to Council. The meeting ended at 1 a.m.


A. A variance once granted will be referred back to the Board of Zoning Appeals if after the expiration of six months no construction is done in accordance with the terms and conditions of the variance.

If a variance appeal is denied, the applicant may resubmit the appeal six months after the denial.


A. A. G. Hauck Co. requests variance to allow 112 parking spaces for The Fitness Store at 11336 Princeton Pike (117 spaces are required). Said variance is requested from Section 153.091(A)(3) "..shall have at least 74 spaces plus six spaces per 1,000 square feet of floor area over 10,000 square feet" (tabled 4/15/97)

Mike Bryant Production Superintendent for Hauck stated that we want to use the basement level which is a storage space for a retail tenant. The Board had four questions that they needed answered before the decision to grant the variance was reached.

Mr. Bryant continued the square footage is approximately 2475 feet, not a very large space, and the tenant will be The Fitness Store which currently is one of the tenants at the upper level.

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Mr. Bryant reported that Kinko will be expanding into their space. The second question was the number of parking spaces we will need, and The Fitness Stores has a maximum of two employees there at a time, sometimes one and it is a low volume retail space. In essence there is a five space need they have.

Mr. Bryant stated the number of spaces we can accommodate, we are accommodating 112 spaces out of the 117 needed. I believe Mr. McErlane missed one space in the upper level so we actually are accommodating 113 out of 117 spaces. Currently the front parking area which is 105 spaces is used by al the tenants and the rear area has been used for employee parking or overflow. There arenít a whole of lot of cars back there, but it can accommodate 12 spaces and would be lined for that.

Mr. Bryant said there hasnít been a problem with parking on the property. All of the parking has occurred in the front, and we are not changing that or adding to that at all. We will be using the back area of the property.

Mr. Squires said I am quoting from the Minutes of our last meeting and on of the questions was the type of client, the type of material sold in there and if it were a retail center. Mr. Wilkinson who was there indicated it probably would be offices but he didnít know. That concerned us and you answered that it would strictly be a fitness store. Will you be selling equipment? Mr. Bryant answered it is for large retail equipment; it is not a sporting goods store.

Mr. Okum commented that back parking lot seems quite crowded the number of times I have been over there recently. What are you going to do with the cars currently using that area? Mr. Bryant answered the employees have used it and a lot of the reason why it is full is because the parking lot is not lined out and when it is we will be able to get a lot more vehicles in that area. We are only talking about adding enough space for five more vehicles. With Kinkoís expansion we will not be increasing the need; we will be decreasing the need because their expansion will not increase drastically the flow that they have in their store. Mr. Okum responded being a frequent user of that mall, I would say Kinkoís would utilize every bit of the parking spaces that you can give them.

Mr. Okum said if The Fitness Store were to go out of business, what would you do with that space? Mr. Bryant answered we canít have a large retail space down there because there is no real street presence to the rear of the property. We were looking at something like a professional office, an accounting firm or something that would not need to have that street presence. With 2,000 square feet youíre not going to get anything large.

Mr. Okum commented but you could put an office of part time secretarial help or phone bank system in there. There are a lot of other uses, and The Fitness Store would be ideal for this location if they were to relocate. My concern is that if another end user moves into there, we may not be faced with five parking spaces; we may be faced with the need for 25 or 30. In 2400 square feet there are a lot of things you can do and I donít know how we can control that. If once we grant you the variance to allow that to go to retail, that pretty well gives you the ability to do what you want. I donít have a problems at all with The Fitness Store going in there, but I do have a problem if something else goes in there. I donít think this Board has the authority to say this business is okay and this business isnít. We are talking a use of the space as a retail space and that becomes a very difficult thing for us to prove.

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Mr. Okum continued Iíve been over there and that whole back parking lot has been full . Relining and restriping it certainly would help, but what do we do if The Fitness Store closes and A. G. Hauck decides to open it to something else, anything that fits in retail zoning. Addressing Mr. Lohbeck, he asked what uses could fit into a 2400 square foot development? Mr. Lohbeck said basically anything could go in; that is up to you people, whatever you want. Mr. Okum added under retail it is pretty well open, so how do we as the board handle that?

Mr. Bryant said the space could be leased to anyone, as are the spaces above. There have been times that tenants have greater or lesser usage. What we are asking for is a variance for five spaces. It is not a drastic overuse of the property, but of course there is no way to determine future tenants in the space. As that space might change so might any of the spaces above.

Mr. Mitchell commented Iíve been by The Fitness Store at 5:30 or 6:00 in the afternoon, and I have seen more than two or three people inside; Iíve seen eight people inside and your parking lot was filled. Where is the number five for parking spaces for the Fitness Store coming from? It that studied from the time they have been there or something that was initially established when they firs developed the property?

Mr. Bryant stated we had talked with the architect. He was using the census report of retail space dealing with their type usage, and came up with this parking requirement. This study could be submitted to the Board also.

Mr. Mitchell continued you talked about expanding Kinkoís. In their expansion, are they anticipating more customers coming to the store? Mr. Bryant answered they are looking to expand in term of providing more support for small offices around that area, doing more large scale printing jobs. Mr. Mitchell wondered if that would entail more employees, and Mr. Bryant answered probably yes. Mr. Mitchell commented so we are losing parking spaces even with the employees and if they are providing any other additional services for the public that would mean more parking spaces also. That needs to be studied a little bit more. Mr. Bryant cmmented I think that was what Mr. Okum was saying, the spaces above will be bringing the same in term of usage of The Fitness Store versus the usage of a few more employees of Kinkos; it becomes a wash. Mr. Mitchell responded he didnít say that; I donít think you can arbitrarily say what without a study being done on that; thatís my whole point. You are saying just add five more parking spaces, and I donít know for sure if I am voting for five or 10 or 15 parking spaces, I donít know.

Mr. Schecker wondered what the consequences would be if this request were denied? Is it that you would not be able to use that lower space? Mr. Mitchell said it is currently approved for storage. Mr. Bryant added it is underutilized presently. The tenants donít use it for storage and the space has stored items that the Hauck Company has left there for many years.

Mr. Okum said my concern is expansion and change of use. I am surprised to see your trying to get another 2500 square feet out of that postage stamp lot. The City has consistently been concerned about maintenance of the facility, the landscaping and the trees meeting just minimum standards when they originally put trees in on the site. I drove by and the canopies are rotted and falling through. That is an example. I notice on the plans that there is another green canopy on the back over this entryway. I certainly think you should do something with maintaining the front portion of this site before planning more retail into it.

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Mr. Okum continued that the lower level is quite often crowded, and I know Kinko will generate more volume. Iím not going to be voting in favor of this; I canít see any more retail in here, and I certainly think that you as a representative of the company should be concerned about the maintenance.

Mr. Okum moved to grant the variance and Mr. Schecker seconded the motion. No one voted aye and Mr. Okum, Mr. Schecker, Mr. Squires, Mrs. Ewing and Mr. Mitchell voted no. Variance was denied with five negative votes.


A. Mildred Meyer requests variance to allow the construction of a room addition to her residence at 11817 Neuss Avenue. Said variance is requested from Section 153.024(D)(4)(c) "Rear yards must be at least 40 feet deep."

Carl Vanover stated I am Mrs. Meyerís husband and we want to build a room addition onto the back of the house. We hired an architect and submitted plans and they were rejected because we didnít have sufficient back yard space so we are here for a variance. Mr. Okum asked the depth from the rear wall of the addition and the rear property line? Mr. Vanover answered 25 feet.

Mr. Squires commented you are saying your rear yards is 45 feet and you are going to use 20 of that for this addition. There is a storage barn there now; will it remain? Mr. Vanover answered for the time being, yes.

Mr. Okum said I did not have an opportunity to visit your property; do the neighbors to your right or left have additions to their homes? Mr. Vanover answered immediately to our right or left no. There is one the third house down. Mr. Okum asked if the neighbors to the right or left have a deck or outdoor patio and Mr. Vanover answered yes. Mr. Okum wondered how far your home is to the neighbors on the right and left? Mr. Vanover answered 10 feet on each side.

Mr. Schecker wondered what the depth of the current house is and Mr. Vanover answered 33 feet. Mr. Schecker added this addition seems quite deep in its own right going into a rather small yard. I have a feeling when we see a structure that deep on that small piece of property it will look quite disproportionate to the rest of the area. The depth seems almost overwhelming to me; I am rather concerned about it extending quite as deep as it does into the rear yard. Why this particular dimension?

Mr. Vanover answered the house currently is very small. We have very limited kitchen space so we wanted to build a combination family room and eating area and also there would be a large closet at one end of the room. It would make the house more livable. Since she and I got married, we both have children and grandchildren and the house is too small to get much of the family together at one time.

Mr. Mitchell asked Mr. Vanover if he would be open to eliminating the storage room and going with a more shallow family dining area? Mr. Vanover stated the storage room is 6í x 20í and would be cut off at one end of the new addition and would not extend out further than the wall of the existing house.


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Mr. Mitchell asked again if they would be open to the elimination of the storage room and bringing the addition back in to 15í instead of having it 20í. Mr. Vanover answered whatever you would allow us to do. We would consider whatever can be done; Iím not saying we would do it, but we would think about it, yes.

Mr. squires said you answered you would keep your storage barn and yet you would have storage here also. Youíre not going to have much yard left at all. Mr. Vanover said the storage we are talking about is for Christmas decorations and seasonal clothing.

Mr. Squires asked the construction materials, brick veneer? Mr. Vanover answered we really have not made up our minds, but we are thinking about frame construction with vinyl siding. Mr. Squires so it will be totally different from the present house. You will not attempt to match your brick. Mr. Vanover commented unless that is a prerequisite to getting a permit. Mr. Squires said I doubt that it would be. You were talking earlier about enhancing the value of your home, and I am thinking it would be more valuable if you had brick veneer to match the brick you have. Mr. Vanover agreed that it would, but our builder told us there would be problem matching the bricks and with such a small job you would have trouble getting a bricklayer to do it and it would be two to three times the cost. Our builder was instrumental in changing our thinking from brick to vinyl siding.

Mr. Squires said having done the same thing myself, I question some of your figures, but it is certainly would be a lot more aesthetically pleasing if you cold match the brick as closely as possible. We searched and were able to match ours pretty well.

Mr. Okum commented since you are building an addition and you have to dig for a footer and foundation, have you considered a basement underneath this addition for your storage? you could retain a 20í x 16í addition and have a basement area 20í x 16í. Mr. Vanover answered we considered that, but due to our age we want to get away from any steps.

Mr. Okum continued I tend to agree with Mr. Squires and Mr. Mitchell about the size of the addition. When you push this unit so far deep in your yard, the only thing your neighbors would see would be the back walls of your room addition. So I would be more inclined if the addition were brought in closer to your home. This addition is projecting more than 20 feet from your house, because your house has somewhat of a bay area on the back projecting about two feet so you really are projecting from the main physical structure about 22 feet instead of 20 feet. I would encourage the consideration of a basement area and a smaller addition. I think this would be overwhelming on your property size, and I think you could do it with a 20í x 18í addition and get the same value from it. I donít want to tell you how to build it; I just want to keep the mass down.

Mr. Vanover responded due to the bump out on the back of the property, we are talking about actually 22 feet from the main wall of the house, but actually the room addition is only going out 20 feet.

Mr. Okum added one of the things you could do is push your chimney to the outside instead of the inside where it is eating into your space. It would break that massive wall. If you push the chimney outside, it doesnít impact the property so much as it gives you value to the interior of the dwelling. Mr. Vanover commented I donít see any problem with that.

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Mr. Okum added it still would project 17í-6" from that line increased of 20 feet. Personally I think you could drop that 6í x 20í off there you are paying to finish the inside and put that basement downstairs. .Mr. Vanover commented that 20í to us is a major part of the addition. We have considered selling and buying somewhere else. We do not want a house with steps.

Mr. Mitchell asked the applicants if they were prepared to amend their request? Instead of it being at 20í, it would be 17í-6" and also the fireplace would be outside your house next to the wall? Mr. Vanover answered whatever you agree to we will consider, yes. The width of the room from the outside of the wall to where it stops is pretty well determined by the wall and where the bump out is on the existing house. We could vary the depth but I would rather not vary the width.

Mr. Mitchell asked if this were something you want to start immediately or within the next few months? Mr. Vanover answered we do not have any start date but it would be in the very near future. I would like to get it done before fall.

Mr. Mitchell asked if they would like to take back the suggestions to your architect and come back in with revised plan? Let him know that we are very concerned about the depth that this protrudes in your back yard. Maybe he could do something a little different to serve the same purpose with a better layout with more clearance between the back of this addition to the property line.

Mr. Vanover wondered if the distance between the back of the new addition and the property the boardís main concern? Mr. Mitchell answered yes that is one of the main concerns; it is cutting off the visibility from your neighbors on both sides. Mr. Vanover asked if it were 15 feet from the bump out or 15 feet from the building? Somebody mentioned 15 feet.

Mr. Mitchell responded I was saying change the 20 foot dimension to a 15 foot dimension, and I was thinking you could get rid of the storage. But after listening to you, I know that storage is badly needed.

Addressing the applicants, Mr.Schecker commented it seems like it is almost two-thirds again the size of your house that you are putting in your back yard and it seems overwhelming. You put that in there and your property may be very valuable, but I am afraid that the folks next door to you on both sides may not appreciate that massive structure that will be looming. It looks to me like it would be quite an interruption of the aesthetic value of the back yards.

Mr. Vanover answered we drove around the neighborhood and there are a number on our street and on Silverwood; there must be 10 or 12 similar type additions. They al have the same type yard we have; some are brick and some are vinyl siding, and I saw one or two that looked like lean-tos built onto the house which were very unsightly. We are planning on something with a nice gable, something which would improve the looks of the neighborhood.

Mr. Schecker added my feeling is that it is massive and if it could be in some way shrunk down in terms of total extension into the rear yard, I would be much more agreeable to considering it.



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Mr. Vanover responded if you would give me a figure to work with, I will go back and talk to the architect and see what we can work out. Thatís why I asked if the 15 foot with the 30 inch extension for the chimney is what you want. I donít want to keep paying the architect.

Mr. Schecker responded 15 foot is an arbitrary figure, but it seems to me more proportionate with the rest of the house than what you have here as far as it extending out into the back yard.

Mr. Okum said in regards to the French door you are proposing for the addition, what will that exit onto? Mr. Vanover answered a patio area; right now it is made of stones, but it would be some type of patio. Mr. Okum wondered if it would go to the corner of the property and Mr. Vanover answered not that far.

Mr. Okum wondered what the distance is from here to the true corner of their property, and Mr. Vanover stated the house is about 55 feet wide including the garage, and we are talking about taking 26 feet so it would be about 24 feet.

Mr. Okum commented my feeling is we do need to bring the building in closer to your dwelling. Personally I have less concern about it being a little wider and less deep than it is, so if you could go back and get it less deep and a little wider, that would limit the way the mass appears from either side. That would allow your neighbors that angular view across your property. I was saying take 5í-6" off that back end and bring it in and make it wider, at least we would not have the expansion on the back of the building.

Mr. Vanover responded you donít want the width any greater than it is because it would line up where the bump out ends now. It would be from the bump out to the outer wall of the garage. Mr. Okum said I understand, but when you put that line in against the house, if it is going against that flat wall on the back side it will not be noticeable. You have 25 feet to play with; move a little more into that 25 foot side and you can gain extra square footage. You could put your storage room off your laundry room and get more space.

Mr. Vanover responded this plan has been considered a lot more than what we are discussing here tonight, so the width of the building is pretty firm. Give me a figure on the depth and I will go talk to the architect.

Mr. Mitchell responded you are putting us in a position of saying what we will approve next time. Mr. Vanover answered yes, what will you approve and what wonít you; thatís what I am asking.

Mr. Mitchell answered that is difficult to say. For me personally I was looking for some sort of plan that would decrease the depth five feet or so, but I am not speaking for the entire Board. Mr. Vanover repeated if you will give me a figure, say 15 feet and then put the chimney on the outside, then we will go back to the architect. It costs money to have the architect draw up plans, unless I know what I am hiring him to do.

Mr. Schecker commented I personally feel that is about where it would be more appropriate. Mr. Okum added that is fine. Mr. Vanover asked if that were the decision.


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Mr. Okum moved to grant the variance for the addition with the following conditions: that the structure be reduced down in depth by five feet on the main part of the building, and that the chimney be allowed to project no more than 2í-6". Mr. Schecker seconded the motion.

Mr. Vanover asked if they had to submit the same thing and go through another meeting, or will the Building Department be allowed to issue the permit? Mr. Mitchell answered no, we would amend the plan here tonight. The only thing before the body here tonight is the setback. What we are approving tonight is instead of a 40 foot setback he will have a 30 foot setback. Mr. Schecker commented not technically because the chimney will really diminish that to some degree. We will be agreeing to a setback variation to the extent of the modification in the proposal. Mr. Vanover stated the exact setback would be 27 and one-half feet. Mr. Okum added and the only thing that is allowed to go past the 30 feet is the chimney. Mr. Vanover said agreed.

Voting aye were Mr. Okum, Mr.Schecker, Mr. Squires, Mrs. Ewing and Mr. Mitchell. The amended variance was granted with five affirmative votes.

B. Krista Henrich requests variance to allow the construction of an 8í x 18í deck in her rear yard at 11660 Van Cleve Avenue. Said variance is requested from Section 153.037(D) "An entrance hood, deck or open but roofed porch may project...not more than 50% into a required rear yard" (17.5 Ď required)

Ms. Henrich stated we would like to have a deck in our back yard. According to the zoning, you have to have 17.5 feet and our back yard is 17.5 feet so we need a variance.

Mr. Squires commented that is a corner lot and most of your yard is your side yard. I notice that it looks like you have started the frame of it. Ms. Henrich confirmed that it had been started. Mr. Squires added there is a home on Harter Avenue that may be affected by this. Exactly how close will you come to that house?

Ms. Henrich answered there is approximately 6 feet between the deck and our property line and I think Jean has six to seven feet. Mrs. Jean Rose added I really like these people but her deck comes right to here and my bedroom is right there. I know they would be considerate of me in my bedroom, but if they sold the house Iím stuck with it. I donít want to cause trouble; I donít want anybody mad at me, itís just that I have to live with it.

Mrs. Rose added there have been six families that have lived there since I moved in in 1962. My bedroom window is right there. Itís not that Iím trying to be mean. I asked them when they were doing it if they wouldnít move it to the side or to the front where they wouldnít bother anybody, but they didnít want to do that. I canít tell you want to do; Iím just telling you my feelings.

Ms. Henrich stated I have been trying to reassure Jean that we will be very considerate. I know there is a 10 p.m. curfew for loud noises, and if we are outside we take it inside when it is late. This is something for my husband and I to enjoy. Whether we have a deck or not, we will be sitting on our patio furniture in the grass if we have to. It is something that will not get in the way. It is not something that is large and will block the sun; it is just for our pleasure.


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Mr. Squires wondered if there were any possibility of moving the deck? Ms. Henrich answered the problem is that there is a tree and also three feet of concrete. If we moved it out there we would have to tear out the concrete.

Mr. Okum said if you were to move it that way and the concrete was not an obstacle, where would it be in relationship to your neighbor Mrs. Rose? Ms. Henrich answered it would be further away from her bedroom window. Mr. Okum commented but it still would be close, and I understand your point of view. If there were some type screening between the properties, some large caliper evergreens between your deck and your neighborís home, that may be an alternative to blend and soften the impact. The other option would be for you to locate the deck on the side of your home where there is no doorway and no access for the deck.

Mrs. Rose added if they get this deck they will be considerate of me; I am sure of that. But if they sell, I am stuck and I have to live with it; that is the bad thing. Mr. Okum asked if it were screened by mature evergreens along the length of the deck, would that be better for you? Mrs. Rose answered no, not really. I am saying that there is not much area there at all. Mr. Okum asked how far her house is from the fence, and from the audience her daughter answered four or five feet. Mr.Schecker commented it is about five feet. Mr. Okum commented that is your side yard and her back yard.

Mr. Mitchell asked the height of the deck and her father in law who is building it answered it is eight inches off the ground. They are going to have a baby; they are a young people trying to improve their life and home and neighborhood. They have a difficult situation with their yard. This is a ground level deck. It is not attached to the house. They are going to be in their back yard because that is where the back door is, regardless of how big their side yard is. Now they donít have a place level enough to set a grill and lawn chairs. The purpose of the deck was to give them a place for a lawn chair, a baby swing and a place to grill.

Mr. Mitchell wondered if it would be that much more expensive to pour a concrete slab? Mr. Henrich answered sure it would be. You have to get a piece of equipment to dig it out, you have the tree and the roots and you hate to lose that tree. It would be a considerable more cost. I am not a concrete man but I am a carpenter, and this was something to help them out. The material was saved up, left over from other jobs so we donít have to invest much money in it.

Ms. Henrich commented I donít know that Jean would agree to a cement deck either. Mr. Mitchell said she wouldnít have too much choice on that. Mr. Henrich asked the difference and Mr. Mitchell answered that eight inches is the difference. Mr. Henrich asked if they brought eight inches of dirt in and graded it away from the deck, wouldnít that be the same thing as a patio? Mr. Okum answered that is still a structure.

Mr. Squires commented speaking for myself, I donít disagree with the concept of the patio. As I look at the sketch you have here, to the left of the drive, is there any way the deck could be put over there and maybe a door from your house go out to that? Ms. Henrich answered there are several trees there, and yes you could cut a door into the side of the house, but these kids are trying to minimize costs as much as they can and still improve the neighborhood. They have had the house re-sided; they are making the effort. They have chosen this community and want to stay here and make it better.



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Mr. Henrich added I canít believe what the difference is if you sat in your yard in that area or on a deck. If I were to haul in a bunch of skids and threw them in the back yard, wouldnít you say anything about that? We are trying to do something right with landscaping and decorations. Mr. Squires answered Iím not finding any fault with what you are doing. I am just concerned about the house next door because it is so very close. Mr. Henrich responded it is close, but we didnít design the subdivision.

Mr. Mitchell asked Mrs. Rose if she had known that it would be only eight inches high and Mrs. Rose answered Iím not a builder; I donít know anything about it The only thing that concerned me was when I saw it, I thought nobody would want a deck built by their bedroom window.

Addressing Mrs. Rose, Mr. Mitchell said they are permitted to go out and pour a concrete patio in the same location so we are talking about a difference in elevation of eight inches. Mr. Henrich added the closest part to the house is the shallowest.

Mr. Okum wondered if it is truly eight inches next to Ms.Henrichís home. On Mrs. Roseís side, how far above grade is the deck? Mr. Henrich answered we will landscape the back and put trees and bushes around it. Her fence line drops off very quickly from the edge of the deck comes out eight and from that point on there is a very severe drop. If you went straight out the deck, it probably is a good half way up the fence, but the yard makes a severe drop at the end of eight foot. Mr. Okum continued so the floor of the deck would be even with the windowsill of her window? Ms. Henrich answered no.

Mr. Okum said my feeling is we understand Mrs. Roseís situation. We are talking a structure because it is above grade. On the other hand, we have to worry about what happens five 10 or 15 years after you sell your property. She likes you people but there have been many homeowners of that house. I would like to see the deck moved further away from this ladyís bedroom window. I donít have as much trouble with the depth to the property line considering the situation that you could pour concrete on site and level the grade out if you wanted to. On the other hand if this were approved by this Board, I would like to see vegetation of ample height as screening between the properties on her corner to protect her property. I am talking 10 foot evergreens which is standard for screening and that would be my recommendation if this is approved.

Mr. Henrich commented to move the deck down would destroy the tree that is there, and moving it down three feet would not make much difference. This does not line up in the front of this womanís bedroom window. Her bedroom window is up from the deck. It is not in the center of her bedroom window. Mrs. Rose responded no itís not in the center but it is right outside my bedroom window. Ms. Henrich added it is diagonal to it. Mrs. Roseís daughter added you also could have it on the side yard if you took the tree down; you have a ton of side yard there. Mr. Henrich responded there is a ton of side yard, but it is not where their back door is. Mrs. Roseís daughter said you do have an opening out of the family room.

Mr. Mitchell commented when we have a neighbor that objects to a variance, it makes it a little bit difficult for us. Trying to put myself in Mrs. Roseís position, if there was possibility that the deck could be moved further form my bedroom window, I would want to see that. I understand the traditional hardship on your part in terms of additional cost, but trying to work in a neighborly fashion, I would want to respect her feelings regarding that.

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Mr. Henrich asked what kind of footage you are talking about moving the deck down? Mr. Mitchell asked if any of the members had seen where the proposed deck is in relationship to the neighbor? Mr. Schecker stated I have seen the property and I see the problem of the proximity to the adjacent house. I didnít pay a lot of attention to the side or the potential for moving it around to the side or any problems there might be in moving it to the side. Mr. Henrich stated I canít believe that if I were to fill that back yard with concrete which would be much more hideous to this woman that would be allowed. It just doesnít make sense. Mr. Schecker responded that is true. On the other hand, appreciating Mrs. Roseís concern that she has some property now that if she would want to sell it with no patio as opposed to one with a patio, her perception is that it would negatively impact her property value. Then the inclination would be that it would be better for you to develop in the side yard rather than the very small rear yard.

Mr. Henrich responded I donít think it would negatively affect her properly; I donít think it is an eyesore. Addressing Mrs. Rose, Ms. Henrich said we are allowed to pour concrete; would that be better, because we will do something. Mrs. Rose responded I think a deck is dumb.

Mr. Mitchell said earlier we talked about moving the deck further from Harter Avenue. He asked Mrs. Rose if there were some distance you would be open to if they moved it down two or three feet? Mrs. Rose responded I even talked to Ron and asked him to move it and he couldnít do it. Ms. Henrich added her patio is right by her neighborís bedroom window. Mrs. Rose added I did try to figure something out, but they did not listen to anything.

Mr. Okum asked how much of the deck has been built, and Mr. Henrich answered just the frame and the floor joists. Mr. Okum said thatís pretty much of the deck. Now we are discussing moving a structure that is already built. They are visualizing something they are seeing; we are trying to visualize what they are describing to us. Mr. Mitchell suggested that the Board go look at this before we make the decision. Mr. Okum added we could table it to the end of the meeting. If the other items on the agenda do not run too late, we could go over there and handle it. The applicant agreed with this. Mr. Okum moved to table to the end of the meeting and Mr. Schecker seconded the motion. By voice vote, all present voted aye, and this will be considered at the end of the meting.

C. John Birkenshaw requests variance to allow the construction of a 768 square foot garage on his property at 357 Cameron Road. Said variance is requested from Section 153.023(F) "A garage shall be not less than 40o s.f. and not more than 600 s.f."

Mr. Birkenshaw stated I have mostly dismantled a Model T two car garage and I would like to put up a 24í x 32í deep garage up. My yard is 570 foot deep. The only people who might have a concern are on the right, and they signed the paper. Mr.Okum asked the size of his old garage, and Mr.Birkenshaw answered if you put a full sized car in the doors cannot close.

Mr. Squires said you have ample room to do this. I was concerned with one item on this application, that the garage would be high enough to park a conversion van. Mr. Birkenshaw responded I want to add the extra door high enough to pull that van in. Mr. Squires wondered if it were an RV and Mr. Birkenshaw indicated that it was not.

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Mr. Okum asked how it would be sided and Mr. Birkenshaw answered my plan is to pour the concrete and build the garage and when I do the garage I hope to re-side my house at the same time so it matches. These are long range plans but I would like to have the garage before winter.

Mr. Squires stated if the variance is approved, you understand youíve to begin work in six months. Mr. Birkenshaw responded Iíll do that, no problem.

Mr. Squires moved to grant variance and Mr. Schecker seconded the motion. Voting aye ware Mr. Squires, Mr. Schecker, Mr. Okum, Mrs.Ewing and Mr. Mitchell. Variance was granted with five affirmative votes.

D. Brisben Development, Inc. for Hunterís Glen Apartments requests variance to allow a 192 square foot ground sign 22í high and 14í from the I-275 right of way on their property at 1235 Chesterdale Road. said variance is requested from Section 153.049(a) "...In a multi-family district one permanent identification sign.."not exceeding 35 s.f. in a area and 10 feet in height shall be permitted facing each public street, but no less than 50 feet from a side lot line and 15 feet from any street right-of-way line."

Mike Bourke of Hunterís Glen Apartments said we purchased the property a year ago and we are trying to make great strides to improve the overall property. We were told the old sign could be moved and what we anticipated and what the sign company had told us was that we could pick up the old sign. We didnít want to lose any trees but if the trees cover the sign it doesnít do you much good, and we are trying to rent apartments along the freeway. As we got into the sign, it seemed like every step they took in the sign, something needed to be replaced, and to make a long story short, the sign company rebuilt the sign. When they told us they would have to repaint the front of it, we opted to go to the new colors to make it more appealing and in keeping with the overall effect of the property. We have painted the buildings two shades of an environmental green color and the doors will be an eggplant color and weíve picked up a striped awning that will be replacing the not very attractive awnings that are on the buildings now.

Mr. Bourke continued in moving the sign, I did not realize that we would be violating any code. I knew we had to keep 15 feet back from the fence and we missed that by one foot. As we placed the sign, we had people with two-way radios driving up and down the expressway to get the angle to the road appropriate so people passing can read it. In fact we have picked up; we have gone from four or five applications over a weekend to 28 applications, so the sign has helped us considerably.

Mr. Bourke stated in the process of adjusting the panels to get the right viewing, I think it also crept up that extra foot. The height is a little misleading in the sense that we were up on a berm originally and then we dropped the post down into a lower area of land. In order to keep the sign readable (over the top rail of the fence) the posts had to grow and that is how the sign became higher.

Mr. Squires wondered if the 12í x 16í sign were up now, or is it the old 10í x 16í sign. Mr. Bourke answered the new sign is up.

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Mr. Squires added and you indicated that to reduce the size of the sign would cost over $3,000. Mr. Bourke added at this point we would have to take that sign down, chop off a portion of it repaint the whole sign, move the posts that are already embedded in concrete and rebuild the whole thing again. As you can see from the drawing we would be cutting off the portion that is shaded, which is a very small part of that sign.

Mr. Mitchell said I thought we were talking about two variances, one on the square footage. Was there a previous variance for this property? Mr. Lohbeck responded the only thing I could find was 1982 for the original sign which was 16í x 10í and 14í high.

Mr. Lohbeck reported we issued the permit based on their moving the existing sign to the location they wanted. Our contention was they put the sign up without a permit. They got a permit to move the existing sign and did not do that. They put up a new sign, and that is where we have a problem.

Mr. Bourke commented it sounds awful that we did that, but I donít think we tried top pull the wool over anyoneís eyes. In fact we left the old sign up for a couple of days while we installed the new sign. We knew we were putting up a new sign and I didnít realize that the permit that I pulled did not cover it because we were trying t o improve a shabby sign. We have a whole new pool and deck and will do a clubhouse next and slowly but surely we hope what has been an eyesore in your community will become a beautiful place. The next time you see me I hope it will be to request a variance to move the main entrance of the property open it wider at the other end of the property and put in beautiful signage, landscape it nicely and lead people in past the clubhouse.

Mr. Okum said until I got this package, I couldnít figure out what the words were on your map. These are directions if I were going eastbound on I-275 and I read it every time going westbound. I have had trouble seeing it when I am driving. Mr. Bourke responded you need to look at the sign more closely, because on one panel as you are going westbound it gives you directions going west, and as you drive east there is a new set of directions. Mr. Okum said driving distractions are not necessarily good. I think the improvement to the sign is a necessity to your development and I donít have a problem with the location; I do have a major problem with it being bigger. Brisben Properties also had a sign issue in Springdale about 10 years ago on Mallard Lakes, so Brisben Properties are very familiar with Springdale and the signage regulations. This is bigger. I like the looks of it, but I think the map is a hindrance that causes drivers to be distracted. Mr. Bourke answered youíll forgive me but if I put up a sign in the size that you request, I can put anything on the sign I want to. Mr. Okum responded the bottom line is the sign is bigger than allowed.

Mrs. Ewing commented I am really happy that you have tried to turn Hunterís Glen around, because it did have a bad reputation in our neighborhood. However, I think the sign is a concern.

Mr. Bourke commented it would be an incredible expense that will come out of something. If we would have to redo this whole sign for 32 square feet which is minor, we will take that out of a beautifying the project in landscaping or beautifying it in some other way.

Mr. Schecker asked if moving it back a foot is not an issue and you let the stanchions stay in place and simply modify the square footage of the sign, do you see that as much less expense to you?

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Mr. Bourke answered it would be less expense because getting the poles into the ground turned out to be the hardest part of putting up the sign. We could take down the plywood sign that is there and put up a sign that is smaller. Iím sure they could find a way to make it long enough that it would reach from pole to pole; some way we could make it work. Mr. Schecker commented I get the impression that this Board might be willing for you to withdraw the current proposal and come back with one that brings the thing within the dimensions of the old sign and apply for a variance to the 15 foot variation.

Mr. Mitchell added the point is you would take back the request for the additional signage and be in compliance with the variance on the property before. You could meet that with having a 160 square foot sign. So the only variance you would be requesting would be the location of the sign.

Mr. Schecker said then I will move to grant the variance to allow the sign to be 14 feet from the right of way with the condition that the size of the sign revert back to that of the original sign, 10í x 16í. Mr. Bourke asked if it could be modified to be 160 square feet so if I chose to make it 8í x whatever, or do you need it to stay 10í x 16í? Mr. Lohbeck stated there also is the height restriction, 14í high, the old sign.

Mr. Bourke said if I bring in dirt and berm that up to the same level that the other sign was, bury those posts in dirt and we measure from that new dirt to the top of the sign as 14í I am in compliance, is that correct? Mr. Lohbeck answered then you would have a problem with the parking lot because the sign is actually setting in the parking lot. In order to mound dirt up, he would have to redo his curbing around that and restripe. Mr. Okum wondered if he could landscape around the perimeter of the lower area of the sign. Mr. Lohbeck said if he would come over from the bottom of the fence, he would hit below the sign itself. I didnít measure what that distance was; maybe a couple of feet but that would be where the 14 feet would be. Mr. Okum said so you are saying from the interstate where the sign is viewed, if they brought the bottom of the sign to the top of the fence, then it was 10 feet high and that would keep them in symmetry to the height they were previously no matter what the grade is behind it. Mr. Bourke said bottom of the sign at the top of the fence and 10 feet above that; no problem. Mr. Lohbeck added I didnít measure what the distance was from the bottom of the fence; it is an eight foot fence.

Mr. Bourke said if I take some dirt and move it in then Iím back to 14 feet. I need the sign to be high enough for the people on the freeway to see it. Mr. Schecker commented the point that the actual height of the sign isnít changing for all practical purposes, is there some objection to maintaining it at that level? Mr. Lohbeck answered the problem is the height and where it is. He needs a variance. Mr. Schecker continued so we would say that we would let the sign stay at the same height, and at that point we can say that the allowable total area would be 160 square feet and he can do it as he wishes at that height. Mr. Squires commented I thought we said specifically that it had to be 10í x 16í. Mr. Schecker said we are trying not to have a tremendously larger sign than was there before. We understand the level needs to be where it is to get any visibility from the highway.

Mr. Bourke said and I think if we took off the I-275 East and Mosteller and Kemper and Chestedale, we probably will have eliminated enough space to get rid of the 32 square feet that we are over, and we might have a sign that is 8 feet tall by a little bit longer but no larger than 160 square feet. What if it were 8í x 18í or 8í x 20í but within the confines of no higher than 15 feet.

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Mr. Mitchell stated there are two issues we need to address. One is the location. The question of 160 square feet is not before us. If he is saying he will be in compliance, it doesnít need to be part or the motion. Mr. Schecker commented but he was concerned that it had to be a 10í x 16í and it doesnít have to be. We are trying to control the height so it wonít be any higher than it was.

Mr. Lohbeck reported we have an existing sign which is 10í x 16í x 14í high. That is what we issued a permit on. Since he put up a larger sign, he has to go with the same, 10í x 16í x 14í high.

Mr. Bourke said youíll forgive me but when I requested to move the sign had I used the existing sign I would have put it higher because only a fool would build a new sign behind a fence that hid half the sign. When I wanted to move the sign, I always intended to keep it above the fence because it would do you no good to have it behind the fence. Al we want to do is maintain the readability whether we all agree on how creative the ability to read it is or not. We want to keep the sign above the fence line so people can read it from the freeway and we can get some revenue to keep on renovating.

Addressing the applicant, Mr. Mitchell said we understand your concern and logic there, but we also understand what you had a permit to do. Mr. Bourke responded I wish someone would have given me all these stipulations when I asked to move the sign. All I did was turn in a request to move the sign and I was given a letter that said yes. Mr. Mitchell said that is your responsibility, sir.

Mr. Okum said that means if there was a valley and an expressway fence ran down into the valley, we would allow this applicant to put a sign 22 feet in the air understanding that the valley and expressway fence went down. I do have a problem with that. I know your old sign was blocked by the trees. Mr. Bourke responded the sign was above the fence and all I am saying is that I would like to maintain the bottom of the sign at the top of the fence. Mr. Okum answered that is eight foot plus and if you go 10 foot high that puts you at 18 feet. This request is for 22 feet. Mr. Bourke stated I have to redo the sign anyway, so I am going to drop it down to 18 feet. Mr. Okum said so that is no higher than 18 feet above this grade. Mr. Bourke responded I am not an engineer and I canít commit to an exact measurement, but I can tell you that we will string a line across from the top of the fence to the bottom of the sign and make sure it is perfectly level.

Mr. Lohbeck reported when I measured the sign, I did not measure it from the ground; I measured it from the elevation at the top of the fence and thatís where I got the 22 feet. He has to go with 14í because that is what we issued the permit on. Mr. Okum responded but this board has the right to change what your permit was originally. Mr. Lohbeck agreed, adding that he is telling you he wants to stay where he is. Mr. Bourke answered no Iím not. Mr. Okum added he is saying he is willing to drop it down by two feet in height. I always look at signs by line of sight and what you are saying Mr. Lohbeck is if we are going by line of sight in appearance this line is significantly higher even if you take the two feet off the top.

Mr. Bourke said what I am requesting is that I keep the sign readable which would mean the bottom of the sign at the top of the fence. And if youíll permit me, instead of going 10 feet high or possibly even eight feet high, I will feel obligated to reduce it another two feet if I can.


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Mr. Bourke continued instead of keeping the sign at 10í x 16í, if I can get it down to 8í x 20í I will do everything I can to redo the overall impact. I would be happy to bring in another drawing of the proposed correction to the mistake if you would like.

Mr. Schecker said in that case Iíll withdraw my motion and move to table this and let him come back to us with a new proposal and let us vote on that variance, understanding that the variance will include the idea of being 14 rather than 15 feet and understanding that the lower portion of the sign should be maintained as you described it with the smaller amount of square footage. Mr. Okum seconded the motion.

Mr. Bourke commented what is past is past, and Mallard Lake is an old project. We are moving forward. Mr. Schecker responded I donít think that is an issue here.

Mr. Mitchell called for the vote. By voice vote all voted aye, and the matter was tabled to June 17th.

Mrs. Ewing asked that some pictures be taken of this sign prior to the next meeting.

Board of Zoning Appeals recessed at 9:15 to visit the site at 11660 Van Cleve Avenue.

Board of Zoning Appeals reconvened at 9:40 p.m.

Mr. Okum asked the applicant if she would have any objection to adding another section onto your deck a third larger toward the rear of the property away from these peopleís homes, making it an 8í x 27í deck, making it longer and towards the tree? Mr. Henrich answered my only objection would be the expense and the concern of the tree. I would hate to see that big tree go.

Mr. Okum asked if they would have any objection to screening in the form of evergreens between the front corner of that deck and your neighborís property? I am talking about three or four 10 foot variety evergreens. If I were to make a motion to allow the deck to remain where it is, I would designate that type of screening which would have to be maintained. Mrs. Henrich answered thatíd would be no problem, and Mr. Okum added that is an expense on your part.

Mr. Schecker asked the point of elongating the deck. Mr. Okum answered adding on to it. In a literal sense they could pour a concrete slab in that first 9í x 8í section; we all know that. People tend to gather in a larger area and the smaller the deck the more the gathering will be more towards the front. The longer the deck, the gathering could progress towards the rear under the tree area. Instead of taking out an 8í x 9í section of the deck, increase the deck towards the rear of the property which would encourage that type of use back there. Mr. Squires added it also would be shaded.

Mr. Henrich Jr. asked which would be more expensive the trees or adding on to the deck. Mr. Henrich Sr. responded to add on to the deck. Mr. Okum added those trees are not inexpensive, but it is a standard for screenage and separation in the new Code. Mr. Henrich Jr. wondered what variety of tree and Mr. Okum said typically white pines. The Building Department can tell you. Mr. Squires added white pines are fine but they donít do well in this clay soil. Mr. Okum said I said evergreens because they stay green all year round and 10 foot in height is the standard.

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Mr. Okum moved that the variance be granted with the following conditions: (1) that on the southeast corner of the deck there be three to four evergreens 10 feet in height be placed as a screening between the adjacent residence; (2) that there be an addition onto the deck of approximately 8í x 9í toward the north end of the deck and (3) that the trees be maintained in perpetuity with the property. Mr. Squires seconded the motion. Voting aye were Mr. Okum, Mr. Squires, Mr. Schecker, and Mr. Mitchell. Mrs. Ewing voted no and the variance was granted with four affirmative votes.


Mr. Schecker said my inclination on the parking lot at the Fitness Store was for the five slots difference, you would think the commercial venture itself would dictate that he cannot put in a high density retail business so I was inclined to say five spaces isnít too much. But I am aware that it is tight up there and pretty busy. Addressing Mr. Okum he said I still was inclined to say yes until you mentioned the idea that this was an issue for quite a long time and you were stretching it as it was. I wasnít aware that where they are right now is a stretch for allowing the amount of business there.

Mr. Okum responded a lot of this is by memory. Barbara was around at the time of that development, and it was a really sensitive one. Sometimes I come across a little too strong but on the other hand the tone set by the City is not always dictated by the Minutes of the meeting. You also have to remember that it is my interpretation of what that tone was and hopefully I am bringing it to you the way I saw it. It was a postage stamp site and they were going to squeeze as much retail onto it as they could, and after they developed it and to this day the maintenance has been abominable.

Mr. Schecker continued another point is the height of that sign. When I looked at that picture, I wondered what the big problem is? I felt inadequate to know what the issue is. The building guy was trying to tell us; Mr. Mitchell stated the Building department was a little bit upset that they issued a permit for a sign 14 feet above the ground and he turns around and said okay in order for the sign to better serve me, I need it at 22 feet and that is what he did. Mr. Okum commented the developerís not of view is that it is at the same elevation above sea level. Mr. Schecker added I donít think that sign drug in 22 new clients because you have to look really fast to even see the thing.

Mr. Mitchell commented I felt the last one we did came out the best for everyone and adding the screening was a very good point. Mrs. Ewing said I would like to go on record to say that I was really impressed and pleased with how Mr. Mitchell handled such a very volatile situation in a very timely and professional manner. Members concurred.

Mr. Okum added that had to be one of the hardest thing for that lady to stand up and speak her piece. At least we as a City notify the neighbors and give them an opportunity to come to the meting and express themselves. Hopefully they do like Mrs. Rose did. Mr. Mitchell commented she did bring up Mrs. Boiceís name and I wonder if we could call Mrs. Boice and explain to her our feelings and opinions were and she could communicate it back to Mrs. Rose. Mr. Squires commented I think this is the most reasonable compromise we could make on it, especially since they could pour a concrete slab without anyoneís permission.



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Page Nineteen

IX DISCUSSION - continued

Mr. Squires said I would like to address the concept of signage. When people come in and ask for a variance and the sign is up, I get upset about it. Mr. Okum added I told this gentleman that billboards are prohibited. There are no other interstate signs in this community except Mallard Lakes. That is a privilege for them to have that sign and they should not abuse that privilege


Mrs. Ewing moved to adjourn and Mr. Schecker seconded the motion. All present voted aye, and the Board of Zoning Appeals adjourned at 9:57 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,



_____________________,1997 ________________________

William Mitchell, Chairman



_____________________,1997 _________________________

Barbara Ewing, Secretary