BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING MINUTES

20 JULY 2004

7:00 P.M.

 

  1. CALL MEETING TO ORDER
  2. The meeting was called to order at 7:05 p.m. by Chairman David Okum.

  3. ROLL CALL
  4. Members Present: Robert Emerson, Fred Borden, Marjorie Pollitt,

    James Squires, Robert Weidlich, Jane Huber

    and Chairman Okum

    Others Present: Richard G. Lohbeck,

  5. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
  6.  

  7. MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING OF 15 JUNE 2004
  8. Mrs. Huber moved to approve and Mr. Borden seconded the motion. All voted aye except Mr. Squires who abstained, and the minutes were adopted with six affirmative votes.

  9. CORRESPONDENCE
    1. Planning Commission Meeting Minutes Ė June 8, 2004
    2. Zoning Bulletin Ė May 25, 2004
    3. Zoning Bulletin Ė June 10, 2004
    4. Zoning Bulletin Ė June 25, 2004
  10. REPORTS
    1. Report on Council Activities Ė Jim Squires
    2. The first meeting this month will be tomorrow evening, so there is no report.

    3. Report on Planning Commission Ė David Okum

    Lawrence Hawkins was elected secretary of Planning last Tuesday night. KFC requested waiving the water detention requirement for their redevelopment which was granted conditioned on the owner bearing that burden with another significant expansion or change to the development. A sign change and an entry change to the main section of the Value City Department Store were approved. The furniture store section remains the same. TGI Fridayís exterior modifications were approved. They wanted to remove that major tree at the man entry to show their new building element. The tree only obstructs the view if you are parallel with the business, not if you are coming south on 747, and they were encouraged to leave the tree and add trees to their frontage. They will have an outdoor dining area and a new entry feature. Walgreenís will be changing the drive through to the west side of the building and making it a two car drive through and will refurbish the façade. The interior will be like any new Walgreenís. Approval of Kemper Pond (IHOP) was granted.

     

     

    BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING

    20 JULY 2004

    PAGE TWO

    DISCUSSION

    Mr. Okum said I will move discussion up on the agenda because I want to discuss an issue. A number of times we have had applications filed and over a period of time the applicants have not attended or decided not to pursue it.

    Legally we have a responsibility to act on a request. Without a written request from the applicant asking that it be removed from the agenda, we really donít have any other alternative but to take an action under our rules, or to table it indefinitely. I hate to leave things open and tabled indefinitely because that means you are not doing your due diligence in pursuing it. I have told staff that my position is that I believe if an applicant is not interested, we do need a letter or a form signed by them that they do not wish to pursue it any further. That way we have a legal basis indicating that they requested it to be removed and therefore no action was taken.

    There is one item on the agenda this evening and we believe that the applicant will not be here. I think it is our responsibility to act, but I think it is unfair to act without the applicant having an opportunity to express himself. On the other hand, if they fail to attend, and it has been advertised, they basically are leaving us with no alternative. I am hoping we can get some direction from the law directorís office or staff as to what we have the responsibility to do legally.

    We have two items on the agenda this evening, and one of the items was requested by the applicant to be tabled. I know Ms. Pollitt has some issues with one of those items because it was referred to staff to work with the applicant to resolve the issue, but there is still the issue of the variance request which is a legal action.

    Mrs. Huber suggested asking by letter to them to send us a letter in writing to either forget the situation or table it. Mr. Okum responded I think either that or a self-addressed stamped envelope with something for them to sign and send back with a yes or no that they are interested in pursuing it. That way we have something on record that says that they withdrew the request. Right now we donít have anything.

    Mrs. Pollitt said when we table it, they are told here the time of the next meeting. Are they given any written notice of the meeting? Mrs. Webb said if the applicant is not present at the meeting when the item is tabled, they receive a letter indicated that it has been tabled to the specific date and that they need to be present, adding that the board can act on the application if they are not present. Also, our cover sheet for the original application includes a line that says that the board may act on the application if the applicant is not present, and it is strongly recommended that the applicant attend.

    Mrs. Pollitt said if we feel it would be in our best interest we might put a form in there that they could sign to ask to be removed from the agenda. Mr. Okum responded something that the law directorís office feels is legally safe. Mrs. Pollitt commented I would feel much better knowing that a letter had been sent out to the applicant giving them information about tonightís meeting.

    BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING

    20 JULY 2004

    PAGE THREE

    DISCUSSION Ė continued

    Mr. Okum said in this case, it was tabled with their being present and with the direction that they work with the city, but the issue of the variance is still before us and needs to be resolved.

    Mr. Squires said as a point of order, shouldnít we identify who we are talking about? Mr. Okum said no, this is in general, anyone submitting a request I donít want to discuss their issue without their having the opportunity to be here to respond and having the public hearing opened.

    Mrs. Pollitt said I think staff is a good place to refer them to, because we do have the economic development director who knows what other real estate is available in Springdale or in the surrounding areas. I think it is appropriate for us to ask them to work with staff. Mr. Okum commented especially when it is a variance for a business.

    Mrs. Pollitt said looking at the situation, if we had voted on it that night, they might not have been able to come back to us for another six months. I like the idea of tabling it giving them some options.

    Mr. Okum said I agree with that, but I donít want to carry these things any further. I donít think an issue should be tabled any more than two meetings. That is basically three months, and if it canít be resolved in three months it doesnít need to be before us.

    Letís try to get that resolved. Maybe staff can work with the law directorís office to give us some quick direction on that, maybe a letter going out to them to say "If you do not wish to continue this any further, please check below and send it back to the Building Department."

  11. CHAIRMANíS STATEMENT AND SWEARING IN OF APPLICANTS
  12.  

  13. OLD BUSINESS
    1. Harry Debruyn, 257 West Kemper Road requests variance to allow the construction of a 24í x 24íutility building on his property. Said variance is requested from Section 153.492(B)(3) "..shall not exceed 120 s.f." Ė Tabled 6/15/04

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

    Mr. Borden moved to table the matter and Mr. Weidlich seconded the motion. All voted aye and it was tabled until August 17, 2004.

  14. NEW BUSINESS
    1. Gateway Mortgage, 12123 Princeton Pike requests variance to allow an expanded parking lot. Said variance is requested from Section 153.502 © "In no case however shall the parking area off access drives be located closer than..10 feet from any non-residential property line" and from Section 153.244 "No use in the GB District shall exceed an impervious surface ratio of 0.75"

    BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING

    20 JULY 2004

    PAGE FOUR

    IX A GATEWAY MORTGAGE 12123 PRINCETON -EXPANDED PARKING LOT

    Randy Wogenstahl, owner of the property said there will be 22 staff employed at that building and the parking is not enough according to the code. What we would like to do is add some parking spaces, go back on the property, and resurface where the drive is on the left hand side of the property and take it up to the line.

    Mr. Lohbeck reported that the applicant is requesting a variance to allow the expansion of the parking area to accommodate a new office use in the building. A variance will be required from Section 153.502( C ) which requires a 10 foot setback from parking and drives. The applicant is requesting to expand the parking area, the current setbacks of one foot on the north side and two feet on the south side. A further variance is required from Section 153.244 which permits maximum impervious surface ratio of .75. The current ipr is .65. The applicant proposes an ipr of .77.

    The current parking is 18 spaces. The applicant proposes six new spaces in the rear and possibly three new parallel spaces along the south side of the building for a total of 27. The applicant should clarify if the additional parking spaces are being proposed only to satisfy the zoning code Section 153.504 regarding required minimum number of parking spaces.

    If the applicant can serve his business with less than a total of the 27 spaces proposed, staff would recommend a variance from Section 153.504 to preclude adding unnecessary pavement. Should it be determined that the additional parking is necessary, staff recommends deletion of the proposed parallel parking on the south side of the building because inadequate aisle space is shown to accommodate these spaces. If these spaces are deleted, a variance is not required from 153.244.

    Mr. Wogenstahl said the parking lot on the south side is broken and drops off. I donít think there is enough width there to put a car, and we really wanted to clean that driveway up. We have 22 people going to work in that building so the 18 spaces we currently have are not enough

    Mr. Okum opened the public hearing. There was no one present in the audience and he closed the public hearing.

    Mr. Okum said so you need those parallel spaces. Mr. Wogenstahl responded we donít really need them, but we wanted to clean up the space and make it look nicer. There is a big weed tree on the side of the building that we would like to take out to enhance the appearance of the building. The parking lot on the south side is broken and crumbled. Would we park there? Probably not, but it would be a nice space for an individual coming in to do a loan to be able to park there because they would only be in the building for 15-20 minutes.

    Mr. Okum said I have some concerns about that area being parking period, because of drive aisle width. I drove back there, and it is quite narrow, even where it is widened out in the front end. If I were turning off of 747 to turn into that paved area, I would hate to have a car parked along that front area because of the drive aisle.

    BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING

    20 JULY 2004

    PAGE FIVE

    IX A GATEWAY MORTGAGE 12123 PRINCETON -EXPANDED PARKING LOT

    Mr. Okum asked if the drive aisle standard in the subdivision regulations 24 feet? Mr. Lohbeck confirmed this. Mr. Okum wondered about the width from the building to his property line, saying that it probably is under 24 feet. Mr. Wogenstahl agreed with that.

    Mr. Okum said I would rather see you add additional parking in that rear part of your parcel to accommodate more cars. Mr. Wogenstahl responded we wanted to do that as well. Mr. Okum said I understand but you are only adding four spaces back there. I would rather you be a little more creative on how you handle that than encroach on that access point, which could be really dangerous, especially with the expansion of 747.

    Mr. Wogenstahl commented I think the expansion is not in front of the building, but halfway between the building. It is wider but then narrows down, and where it narrows down we want to make it the same as the front. Mr. Okum responded I understand, but that is eating into our impervious surface area. My feeling is I would rather see you eat up impervious surface area in the back and keep some green. I understand that you have the weed tree growing there, but it would be nice to see something green rather than asphalt all the way into your business. Your business is pretty stark setting there with all asphalt up next to the building as it is.

    Mr. Okum said we would like to see you successful in Springdale but I donít want to affect safety by granting a variance that would create a safety issue. I think it means creating some more asphalt area, and cleaning that area up.

    Your tree may not be a hardwood, but you do have to have it checked to see if it is protected under our Tree Preservation Ordinance. Before you remove it, you may want to have someone identify it.

    Do you see a way you could make this work without expanding the pavement for parallel parking in that drive aisle?

    Mr. Wogenstahl answered from a cost standpoint, I would love to. I am going strictly off the blueprint from the architect who was stating we needed them. If we donít need them I donít want to do them. I would like to expand the back; that I think we would have to do. If we donít have to do it on the side, I donít want to do it.

    Mr. Okum said if you went to straight parking in the back, you could get eight spots. I think with some gravel and base you could create a bigger parking area that might help.

    Mr. Weidlich asked the distance from the last spot shown to the property line, adding that it looks like you might be able to gain a couple of spaces if the code would allow you to push those four spots back. Mr. Okum said the setback for parking is 10 foot, and if he would move all the parking back there, we could give him a variance in exchange for him not to have parallel parking and taking out the green space along the south side.

    BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING

    20 JULY 2004

    PAGE SIX

    IX A GATEWAY MORTGAGE 12123 PRINCETON -EXPANDED PARKING LOT

    Mr. Weidlich responded that is what I am getting at. If this is even close, it looks like he could gain one on each side. Mr. Okum said I think if he went north to south on all his parking spaces he could get eight additional back there.

    Addressing the applicant, Mr. Okum said it will take some fill work and some grading and fixing, but I would rather give you the variance for the setback on the rear of the site and keep the green space as much as you can in the front and not allow parallel parking in that front area, period, because of the safety issue. I think that is a fair exchange because you are able to accomplish eight additional spaces.

    Mr. Okum asked Mr. Lohbeck if staff was recommending to eliminate the parallel parking and allow a variance to the rear, and Mr. Lohbeck indicated that it was.

    Mr. Weidlich moved to eliminate all parallel parking on the south side of the building from the S.R. 747 property line to the rear corner of the building and the variance to be granted for encroachment into the side yard setback and the parking to expand to the rear of the parcel to allow for eight parking spaces in the rear resulting in the lowering of the impervious surface area. Mr. Borden seconded the motion.

    Mr. Wogenstahl said so am I to understand that you donít want us to even fix anything on the side of the building? Mr. Okum said no, you can fix it and make it green. You can clean it up, but there will be no parallel parking in that section. You could make that grass if you wish. Behind the building we are allowing you an increase of impervious surface area because you need to expand your parking lot back further.

    On the motion to approve, all voted aye, and the variance was granted with seven affirmative votes.

  15. DISCUSSION
  16. ADJOURNMENT

Mr. Squires moved to adjourn and Mrs. Pollitt seconded the motion. All voted aye, and the Board of Zoning Appeals adjourned at 8:17 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

_________________________,2004 _____________________

David Okum, Chairman

 

 

_________________________,2004 _____________________

Jane Huber, Secretary