BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS MEETING
JULY 21, 2009
7:00 P.M.

I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m.


II. ROLL CALL

Members Present: Robert Diehl, Robert Weidlich, Jane Huber, Dave Okum, and William Reichert

Members Absent: Robert Emerson, Randy Danbury

Others Present: Randy Campion, Inspection Supervisor
   
III. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE


IV. MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF 16 JUNE, 2009

Mr. Reichert moved for acceptance the June 16, 2009 Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting minutes, Mrs. Huber seconded the motion and with a unanimous vote from all Board of Zoning Appeals Members present the June 16, 2009 minutes were adopted.

V. CORRESPONDENCE

a. Zoning Bulletin - May 25, 2009
b. Zoning Bulletin - June 10, 2009
c. Zoning Bulletin - June 25, 2009


VI. REPORT ON COUNCIL

Mr. Diehl gave the report on Council.

VII. REPORT ON PLANNING COMMISSION

Chairman Okum gave the report on Planning Commission.

VIII. CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT AND SWEARING IN OF APPLICANTS

IX. OLD BUSINESS

A. Withdraw variance request tabled from June 16, 2009 Board of Zoning Appeals meeting - The owner of 1083 Castro Lane requests a variance to allow the elimination of the garage. Said variance is from Section 153.105(B)”A single two-car garage and related parking area is required…”

Chairman Okum: The resident has sent us a letter requesting this item be removed from the agenda; they are withdrawing.

Mrs. Huber: I would like to make a motion to withdrawal the variance request to eliminate the garage at 1083 Castro Lane.

All Board of Zoning Appeal Members present voted “aye” and the variance request was withdrawn.

X. NEW BUSINESS

A. The owner of 399 Naylor Court requests a variance to erect a screen patio 9’-8” from the rear property line. Said variance is from Section 153.072(A) “Single household dwellings…shall have a minimum rear yard setback of 40 feet”.

Mrs. Sandra Kunkel came forward: I am Sandra Kunkel; with me, my husband Ronald and my son Brian. We own the house at 399 Naylor Court. We bought this house in 2007 and the house is on a corner lot at Naylor and Cameron. When we moved there was a patio on the back; it had a roof and posts and we decided we would screen it. My husband is disabled and I thought it would be nice for us to have a screened-in patio. We started getting estimates and everybody who came told us that the concrete had cracks and they suggested that before we try to put anything else there that we replace the concrete and in order to do this we had to take the old roof off. So we did tear that down and we got the concrete poured and we decided on a builder after going through estimates. We applied for a building permit and we were turned down because of the 40’ setback. There is not 40’ behind our house, it is a corner lot. We have 40’ on the other side but not in the back. We did get a really good builder to build the patio, C & D Builders, and we were hoping that you could understand that we are not trying to do it without doing it right.

(At this time Mr. Campion read the Staff report.)

(Chairman Okum opened the floor to the audience for comments; no one came forward.)

Mr. Weidlich: I would like to make a motion that we grant a variance to construct a screened patio room on the property at 399 Naylor Court with a setback of 9’ -8” from the rear property line.
Mrs. Huber seconded the motion.

Mr. Diehl: Is this patio connected to the house at all?

Mrs. Kunkel: Yes, it is.

Chairman Okum: Did the original patio cover have screens on it?

Mrs. Kunkel: No.

Chairman Okum: The 9’– 8” will be from the outside edge of the new patio roof?

Mrs. Kunkel: I assume so.

Chairman Okum: There will not be any glass in it?

Mrs. Kunkel: No. This is a screened enclosure.

Chairman Okum: This is a very odd property; we have a number of these in the community. It is a very difficult situation because the patio door that exits the family room of these homes goes directly to that elevation. You would have to cut walls open on the other end to use the side.

Mrs. Huber polled the Board of Zoning Appeals Members and with a unanimous 5-0 vote (2 Board of Zoning Members being absent) the request for the variance was granted.

Chairman Okum: You will get a copy of the variance and it will stay with the property forever.

B. The owner of 344 Peach Street requests a variance to allow a pool to be erected in the side yard. Said variance is from Section 153.488(C)(1) “A swimming pool, bathhouse, tennis court or other accessory recreational facilities…shall be located 15 feet from the rear or side lot line”.

Lisa Parton: I am Lisa Parton, I reside with my mother Hazel at 344 Peach Street; we got a blow-up pool not realizing that we needed a permit to erect it. When we came in to get a permit we were not given one because of the fencing and because of the rear yard placement. My mother’s house is on a corner lot and there is not much of a back yard. I could have 9’ if I move the swing-set to put a pool there, but that would be very inconvenient for us; my mother has oxygen and we would like for her to join us in the pool and where I had the pool set was outside her bedroom window. She would have 50’ of tubing and to bring that through her window we wouldn’t have to bring the concentrator outside, which is very heavy. We did acquire a permit to redo the fence and that new 6’ fence privacy is in place. It is hard for us to enjoy the recreation center in Springdale because of so many people and not knowing what she will be exposed to.

Chairman Okum: What size inflatable surface, above-ground pool is this?

Lisa Parton: Eighteen foot.

(At this time Mr. Campion read the Staff report.)

Chairman Okum: You have heard Staff’s comments; did you understand you could potentially put the pool where the swing-set is?

Lisa Parton: That is an awful lot of work.

Chairman Okum: So there is a practical difficulty with that?

Lisa Parton: Yes. It is a wooden swing and that would mean that we would have to tear it down and move it somewhere else on the property. It would also mean that every time she wanted to get into the pool we would have to lift a 25 or 30 pound concentrator throughout the house and try to find an outlet to plug it into.

Chairman Okum: Is the swing-set mounted into the ground or surface sitting on the ground?

Lisa Parton: I think some of the posts were concreted in when they set the swing-set up.

(Chairman Okum opened the floor to the audience for comments; no one came forward.)

Mr. Reichert: What do you consider the side of the house and what is the front?

Mrs. Hendrix: Peach Street has always been considered the front of the house.

Mr. Diehl: Do you have a fence on the property?

Mrs. Hendrix: Yes.

Mr. Diehl: So nobody can really see the pool from the outside?

Mrs. Hendrix: No.

Mr. Diehl: This 18’ diameter pool, is this a seasonal pool that will be taken down?

Lisa Parton: Yes, it will be taken down.

Mrs. Huber: I move to grant a variance from Section 153.488(C)(1) so as to allow an above-ground swimming pool in the Oak Street side yard of residence at 344 Peach Street.

Mr. Reichert seconded the motion.

Mr. Reichert: I would like to amend this to say that it is an 18’ diameter above-ground seasonal pool and not necessarily any pool.

Chairman Okum: All in favor of the amendment signify by saying “aye”.
(All Board of Zoning Members present voted “aye” and the motion was amended.)

Mrs. Huber polled the Board of Zoning Appeals Members present and with a 5-0 “aye” vote (two members being absent) the request for a variance for 344 Peach Street was granted with conditions.

C. The owner of 85 West Kemper requests a variance to allow signage to be placed on the light poles. Said variance is from Section 153.531(D)(2) “Pole signs shall be limited to not more than one such sign…”

Fred Mangold: I am the General Manager for Jake Sweeney Chevrolet Imports, which would include Chevrolet, Mazda, BMW and our used cars.

Chairman Okum: Basically, you are the General Manager and you have the authority to represent the corporation?

Mr. Mangold: Yes.

Chairman Okum: We are working on the request for 85 West Kemper, Item “C”.

Mr. Mangold: That is our Chrysler Dealership; these signs are already there, most of which have been there for probably a few years and I didn’t know that we weren’t allowed to put them there. The ones at 85 West Kemper are in the rear of the facility, if you would travel down McGillard Street and come in our driveway in the back. Our operation, as you know, is a pretty big size and it is difficult for the consumer when they pull into our facility; we have so many used cars and so many different new vehicles that it is nice for the consumer to be able to pull in and find the used cars and the Chevrolet new cars and the Mazda new cars, etc. In the rear of that facility there are four aluminum signs on the light poles, kind of in the rear of the Chrysler property. These four signs say “Used Cars”; it is a designation of where we are putting our used cars on the Chrysler – Jeep – Dodge facility.

(At this time Mr. Campion read the Staff report.)
Mr. Campion: The only thing I wanted to add for clarification is that the Zoning Code lists different types of signage, signs that are affixed to buildings and signs that are on poles and it allows you one pole sign per property; it is our determination because these are on a pole they are pole signs.

Chairman Okum: If these were mounted to the building it would be a different issue?

Mr. Campion: Yes. These are mounted to a pole, so they are considered a pole sign and they are only allowed one pole sign; they have a variance to have two pole signs.

Chairman Okum: Although the Hamilton County Auditor’s page says that it is
85 West Kemper, our records show that it is 85 and 95 West Kemper so your request is for 85 and 95 West Kemper, the combined Chrysler and Saturn dealership properties.

(Chairman Okum opened the floor to the audience for comments; no one came forward.)

Mr. Reichert: I would like to make a motion to grant a variance from Section 153.531(D)(2), so as to allow six light-pole mounted signs to be located on the properties of 85 and 95 West Kemper Road.
Mrs. Huber seconded the motion.

Chairman Okum: They are allowed 918 s.f.; they are currently requesting a total square feet under what they are allowed, but we are not doing a variance for square feet increase; we are only doing a variance request for allowable pole mounted signs approximately 40 feet from the right of way on Kemper Road on the second row of light poles; the signs for the Saturn Dealership are on the second row of light poles from McGillard (about 40’).
I am not opposed to you telling people where the used cars are, I think it is important. The purpose of a pole sign is so that people can see it when they come down the roadway. I consider these more directional signage, but some of the content on the signs is not directional. If a variance were in line I personally feel that directional or informational is good for the property. When you are there you can get confused as to where the new cars are and where the used cars are.

Mrs. Huber: Due to the economic situation in our country and due to the status of car dealerships; David you said that you opposed the marketing type, I think right now that those are important.

Mr. Okum: If they were temporary that is one thing, but this is a permanent variance that he is requesting. We do allow banners under temporary, but these would not be considered banners.

Mr. Mangold: On the one side of the main driveway at Kemper we have the “New Cars” sign and at the other side of the main driveway we have the “Used Cars” sign; and it grew from there. The latest ones that I put up would have been the ones at 1280 East Kemper and those are the ones that have some informational stuff, such as “Leasing”.

Mr. Weidlich: The four signs on McGillard, isn’t that an overkill having four of them clustered in that one area?

Mr. Mangold: I guess you’re right, to be honest. I understand, but we thought it looked better.

Chairman Okum: So, we have six signs total; we are under the sign total quantity for the site; we are dealing with a rigid banner-type sign mounted to light poles.

Mr. Diehl: I agree with Mrs. Huber that in this day and age you cannot get too much marketing signs. You indicated that you were not going to go any higher than this, are you comfortable saying that this is all the requested signage that you want?

Mr. Mangold: Yes.

Mr. Diehl: You will have my positive vote.

Chairman Okum: It is important for people to know where they are going on this site, based on that I would like to see less of the advertisement signs and more of the directional signs.

Mr. Reichert: I would like to amend the motion for 85 West Kemper and 95 West Kemper Road to include “the signs: 6 - 2’ X 8’ rigid-banner type signs mounted to the light poles may be no closer than the second row of existing light poles from McGillard or Kemper Road; the signs shall be maintained and not be in disrepair and they shall not exceed the allowable signage square footage for the site.”
Seconded by Mr. Weidlich.

Chairman Okum: All in favor of the amendment to the motion signify by saying “aye”.
(At this time all Board of Zoning Appeal Members present approved the amendment to the motion).

Mrs. Huber polled the Board of Zoning Appeals Members present (two members being absent) and with a unanimous 5-0 “aye” vote the request for a variance at 85 and 95 West Kemper Road was approved with conditions.

D. The owner of 1280 East Kemper requests a variance to allow signage to remain on the light poles. Said variance is from Section 153.531(D)(2) “Pole signs shall be limited to not more than one such sign…”

Fred Mangold: Again this is similar to Item “C”, the signage at 1280 East Kemper does have four signs on that property that are more than just directional; they don’t just say “Used Cars”, they say “Leasing Available” and “$0 Down Available” and “Guaranteed Credit”. What we were trying to signify by this signage is that we have a full course operation and it is not just buy here, pay here. On the left of the building next to Mike’s Car Wash there is a big stone wall and there are a couple of light poles back there that we have the “Buy Here – Pay Here” signage; I don’t think you can see that unless you are on our facility.

Mr. Campion: I wouldn’t really consider that visible from the road.

Chairman Okum: So there are six rigid-banner pole signs.

Fred Mangold: Four on one side and two on the other.

(At this time Mr. Campion read the Staff report.)
Mr. Campion: I want to add that you are only allowed one pole sign per property.

Mr. Reichert: I make a motion to allow an additional 6 - 2’ X 8’ rigid-banner type signs mounted on light poles and not to be any closer than the second row of lights from Kemper Road at the property on 1280 East Kemper, said variance is from Section 153.531(D)(2) “Pole signs shall be limited to not more than one such sign…”
Seconded by Mr. Weidlich.

Mr. Diehl: First of all I would like to say that Jake Sweeney has been a great corporate citizen of Springdale, the main campus is a showcase for us and we appreciate everything the company has done for us. This property sticks out like a sore thumb and my question to you is what is your long term plan for this property?

Mr. Mangold: We have signed a contract with a company called “China Motor Car”. With the economic environment that we have it may have slowed it another year but sooner or later they are going to be here and we will be representing three different Chinese manufacturers at some point in the future. Once that happens we are going to be doing whatever that manufacturer makes us do to comply with their requirements. More than likely we will have to have a big sign that says, “China Motor Car”, or “Brilliance”. We may have to redo that whole fascia; we may have to do more to that facility. We have spent a lot of money on the landscaping; we tried to do a sign that was classy looking knowing that we will eventually have to do something different, once the Chinese thing comes to fruition.

Mr. Diehl: Would you consider just doing directional signs?

Mr. Mangold: We will do whatever you tell us to do.

Chairman Okum: The property owners were granted a variance on that site of
293 s.f. of signage.

Mr. Weidlich: Does the building say “Used Cars” on it?

Mr. Mangold: The front of this building says “Jake Sweeney Automotive”.

Mr. Campion: That is right, in fact I don’t believe that you are supposed to have a facility strictly for used cars; so this is a supplement to your other properties.

Mr. Mangold: There are basically 4 - 2’ X 8’ signs and I would like to keep the other two over by the Mike’s Car Wash.

Mr. Campion: We did count the two near the retaining wall and you don’t see them until you are on the lot.

Chairman Okum: Would they be interpreted as a sign?

Mr. Campion: Yes; they are interpreted as a pole sign because that is what they are.

Chairman Okum: We probably need to leave them in the motion because they are pole signs - light pole mounted rigid banner signs.

Mr. Diehl: The two signs in the back are not visible from Kemper so they would not need to be changed.

Chairman Okum: The applicant is only using 220 s.f. of his allowable signage so he could utilize the other 73 s.f. of signage on the building to address the information that he is trying to convey in these signs; he could do it with wall mounted signs.

Mr. Mangold: We would like to use these signs and change them to say “Used Cars”?

Chairman Okum: I am not going to tell you what they should say, but they should be directional signage.

Mr. Diehl: I would like to make a motion to amend the original motion that “all visible pole signs from Kemper Road must be directional (similar to the example “A” shown in the submitted photo examples; directional in nature)”.
Seconded by Mr. Reichert.

Chairman Okum: All in favor of the motion to amend signify by saying “aye”;
(At this time all Board of Zoning Members present approved the amendment to the original motion.)

Mrs. Huber polled the Board of Zoning Members present (2 members being absent) and with a 5-0 vote, the request for the amended motion to allow 6 – 2’ X 6’ rigid banner-type pole signs was granted with conditions.

E. The owner of 33 West Kemper requests a variance to allow signage to remain on the light poles. Said variance is from Section 153.531(D)(2) “Pole signs shall be limited to not more than one such sign…”

Mr. Fred Mangold: I am here for the same reason as the other Jake Sweeney properties (pole signage).

(At this time Mr. Campion read the Staff report.)

Chairman Okum: The Mazda dealership is under its allowable and the Chevrolet dealership is over its allowable by 160 s.f.

Mr. Reichert: It states ten signs requested, where is the rest of the signage?

Mr. Campion: It includes the existing pole sign. The original variance was for the pole sign and the wall sign – total signage.

Chairman Okum: The original allowed 693.7 s.f. total allowable signage on the site.

There are thirteen – 16 s.f. signs, all for Chevrolet; and four on the Mazda portion of the property.

Mr. Diehl: How long have these signs been up there?

Mr. Mangold: The four Mazda signs were the first ones we did years ago, and the Chevrolet signs have been there a while. The phone number signs we just added not too long ago.

Chairman Okum: Is there any way you can reduce the signage down because I am having difficulty with the thirteen – 2’ X 8’; you are basically increasing your sign package by 20%. You are allowed 693.7 s.f. on the Chevrolet portion. The ones on the Kemper Road side legitimately are measured by Staff at 160 s.f.; so you are 160 to 208 s.f. more signage that what has been approved through all the variances that have been granted all the way back to 1997. Everything adds up to a total allowable sign square footage; according to our code that lot with two frontages, forget behind Shell, they are allowed 571 s.f.; we have given them variances to allow them up to 693.7 s.f.; that is a significant variance.

Mr. Mangold: And these pole signs do they have to be counted as part of the total?

Chairman Okum: They will be isolated as “directional only” signage for any future variances or any changes that the dealership would make. They would not be able to exchange this variance for calculation to additional building signage. If you took those off the poles I don’t think you would get more building signage. Unless the variance is specific and the states that these are for these “rigid banner-type signs” mounted to light poles, I don’t know if Staff would allow that to be reproportioned; would they, Mr. Campion?

Mr. Campion: Probably, they count it in. They count every little 5” X 6” sign that has an arrow that says “this way”, they count that toward your total.

Chairman Okum: I think those are netted out to “0” for directional arrows – “enters” and “exits”, I don’t think are calculated; but they are not to exceed 8 s.f.; there is a limit. I am not getting very favorable vibes for how this can be resolved. My suggestion is at this point that we have a motion on the floor, that we table this to the next meeting and you can come back to us with some suggestions. I would rather see this be proportional to time stamped with a temporary under a “rigid banner-type sign mounted to light poles” so that we can maybe get some direction that might help that and that would help you and may be something that we can do.
Does everybody on the Board agree?
(The Members of the Board of Zoning signified that they did agree.)

Mr. Reichert: Yes, I agree. If we can get that overage down a little bit closer to 693.7 or 700 s.f.; we could grant another 50 s.f. or 200 s.f.

Mr. Mangold: So if we can reduce the number of signs maybe we can reach an agreement.

Chairman Okum: And go to directional only.
Are you requesting that this be tabled to the next meeting?

Mr. Mangold: Yes.

Chairman Okum: The applicant has requested that this be tabled to the next meeting, can we have a motion.

Mr. Diehl moved to table the request for 33 West Kemper to allow signage to remain, to be moved to the August Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting.
Mr. Weidlich seconded.

(All Board of Zoning Appeals Members present signified by say “aye”, and the request was tabled.)

XI. DISCUSSION

No items were presented for discussion.

XII. ADJOURNMENT

Chairman Okum: So, with that, I’ll accept a motion for adjournment.

Mrs. Huber moved to adjourn and Mr.Reichert seconded the motion, the Board of Zoning Appeals adjourned at 9:16 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

________________________,2009 ___________________________________
            Chairman Dave Okum



________________________,2009 ___________________________________
            Secretary Jane Huber