Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

7:00 p.m.

 

I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Chairman James Squires.

II. ROLL CALL

Members Present: Councilwomen Boice and Kathy McNear,

Tom Schecker and Chairman Squires

Members Absent David Okum (arrived at 7:02 p.m.)

Barbara Ewing.

Mr. Squires stated that Mrs. Ewing phoned and has a family emergency. She

will try to make it.

III. MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING OF 19 AUGUST 1997

Mrs. Boice moved for adoption and Mrs. McNear seconded the motion. By

voice vote all present voted aye, and the Minutes were adopted with four

affirmative votes.

MINUTES OF REGULAR MEETING OF 16 SEPTEMBER 1997

Mrs. Boice moved for adoption and Mr. Schecker seconded the motion. By

voice vote all present voted aye and the Minutes were adopted with five

affirmative votes.

IV. CORRESPONDENCE

A. 9/16 Letter to Catherine Kauffman, 11831 Ramsdale Court re expiration of variance to allow dog grooming business in her home

B. 9/30 Letter from Vineyard Community Church re removal of temporary trailer

C. Zoning Code Revisions

D. Minutes of Planning Commission Meeting - 11 September 1997

VI. REPORTS

A. Report on Council Activities - Marge Boice

Mrs. Boice reported that at the last meeting I told you the public hearing for the proposed Target project was continued to October 15. At that meeting, Target officials have asked for another continuance, and the next hearing will be November 5th. It has certainly caused a lot of interest in the community, and I would encourage those of you who are interested to show up at the public hearing. Also, we are hiring a collection agency for the city and are hiring a few extra people in the Tax Department. Generally we are running pretty smoothly as we head into the end of the year.

B. Report on Planning Commission - David Okum

Mr. Okum reported the Pine Garden Landominiums requested plot approval for their site; they did not show up and it was tabled. Duke Associates presented a plan for the Tri-County Marketplace, the three businesses to be located at the old Swallenís location.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Two

VI B REPORT ON PLANNING COMMISSION - continued

Mr. Okum continued appearance-wise the site will be a lot more favorable to the area. There will be a lot more landscaping. Variances are needed for signage and setback, and Planning referred this to the Board of Zoning Appeals for consideration this evening. There were some recommendations from Planning concerning additional vegetation and landscaping around the signage and some other or minor changes. It definitely will be much more appealing than the white block building that was on the site.

VII. STATEMENT CONCERNING VARIANCES

A. A variance once granted will be referred back tot he 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.

Mr. Squires continued please be advised that all testimony given in cases pending before the board are to be made part of the public record. As such we ask that each citizen testifying before this board take their place at the podium, state their name address and the nature of your variance request. Be advised that all testimony given and board response is recorded and from this recording we obtain our Minutes.

VIII. OLD BUSINESS

A. Arthur E. Tiedke, 11830 Lawnview Avenue requests a variance to enclose an existing covered roof area with a screened enclosure and floor. Said variance is requested from Section 153.025(D)(4)(c) "Rear yards must be at least 35 feet deep." (Tabled 16 September 1997)

Mr. Tiedke said I live at 11830 Lawnview Avenue and the variance is to have the area within 32 feet of the rear fence, three feet shorter than what is allowed. I have an outdoor awning for the summertime and thought I would enclose it. I had two people working on it; the first one built it and there was no floor beneath it. I hired someone else to put the floor in and he said he would get a permit and he didnít do that. He still is finishing the floor. I have signatures from the people surrounding.

Mr. Squires said in the letter sent to you certified, in the second paragraph it says "We have observed that you have begun to construct the enclosure illegally without acquiring a permit." Have you now acquired that permit? Mr. Tiedke answered I am trying to acquire it. The builder said he can get it and he has talked to Mr. McErlane but he hasnít acquired it and he charged me $2,500 to finish it and hasnít. Now it is in the process of being finished according to Mr. McErlaneís orders. His name is William Hall and I tried to get him to come to this meeting to explain why he hasnít finished it. Mr. Squires said so you are waiting for the variance before you can get this permit.

Mrs. Boice said for clarification, according to this letter you donít have the variance, so construction should not have been started. Number two, your builder knows full well that he needs a permit and it must be posted on the property before construction starts.

Mr. Tiedke said that 32 feet was taken up when the roof was put on and they fined me $25 for not getting a permit. Mrs. Boice said you can put an awning on, but now you are enclosing it. You needed a variance before all this construction started. Your builder did not get a permit and the Building Department has cited you accordingly.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Three

VIII A ARTHUR TIEDKE 11830 LAWNVIEW AVENUE - SCREENED ENCLOSURE

Mrs. Boice continued I am concerned about granting a variance when already things have gone so wrong. According to this, the materials being used are not proper. Mr. Tiedke commented they have been removed. Mr. Lohbeck reported that they took the siding and flooring off; right now it is just a roof structure. Mrs. Boice wondered if the builder had applied for a permit and Mr. Lohbeck confirmed that he had.

Mr. Okum asked why Mr. Tiedke had not been at the last meeting, and Mr. Tiedke answered I thought the builder would come and there would be no reason for me to come. It was my fault. Mr. Okum said you continued to do the project without the variance or permit. Mr. Tiedke said right and now we are tearing it up and will replace it with the correct materials. Mr. Okum said the roof system previously constructed was not in violation. Your intention is to enclose that area. Mr. Okum wondered if it were a sheet siding and then screening, asking if there would be doors. Mr. Tiedke answered two doors on the sides with plexiglas sheeting. Mr. Okum asked how far the roof overhang was and Mr. Lohbeck indicated he didnít know but from the paper it looks like about two feet.

Mr. Squires said for clarification, we are not to vote on the quality of materials and structure of this. That is a Building Department concern. The applicant has indicated that he intends to follow the Building Department guidelines. As a Board we have to decide whether or not Mr. Tiedke gets his three foot variance.

Mr. Okum since I brought up the building materials, I think it is important that the Board be aware or the materials that the neighbors are looking at that is infringing on this setback requirement. I am concerned with the materials for the appearance. Mr. Squires said I agree; I share that concern as well. Mr. Tiedke stated I have signatures of all the neighbors.

Mr. Squires said in your application there were no detailed plans. Mr. Tiedke responded I didnít know how to draw any and didnít have any set up. Mr. .Squires responded your builder does;í he is a professional. Mr. Tiedke said the builder was going to go by my plans and he said he would make a drawing. It all was dependent on him and I think he is going to jail Thursday night. He took my credit card and misused it. treated his family to Ponderosa besides the building materials. If he doesnít show up Thursday morning to finish it, Iíve already retained a lawyer to put him in jail.

Mrs. Boice said it is rare that I hear Mr. Lohbeck say I donít know when we ask him a question. This means the Building Department doesnít have a plan. It is normal procedure to have something before us. We cannot concern ourselves with your variance alone. We must concern ourselves with how it affects your neighbors. I canít vote on this without a plan. Mr. Tiedke said I will have a plan in your hands as soon as possible.

Mr. Squires commented I have the distinct feeling that if we had to vote on this tonight, you wonít get it. As I read earlier, if a variance is denied you canít resubmit for six months. So the question is do you wish to withdraw it until you can come back with some detailed plans? Mr. Tiedke said yes. Mrs. Boice said it has been tabled once and we are getting late in the year. I would suggest you withdraw this and come back in and reapply when you are ready. I would not like to see this carried over month after month, and I suspect by the time you find another builder and get plans drawn, we might be talking something in the spring. I would not vote to table.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Four

VIII A ARTHUR TIEDKE 11830 LAWNVIEW AVENUE - SCREENED ENCLOSURE

Mr. Tiedke said the builder is supposed to be there Thursday. Mrs. Boice responded you need to remember that you need to have a permit first and plans into the Building Department. Until you get all your ducks in a row I would suggest you withdraw and then reapply. Mr. Tiedke said Iíll withdraw it then. Mr. Squires added I think that is a wise move. Withdraw and come back before us when you have your plans. You are aware that you cannot continue this construction. Mr. Tiedke answered I understand.

IX. NEW BUSINESS

A. Catherine Kauffman, 11831 Ramsdale Court requests renewal of their two-year variance to allow a dog grooming business in her residence. Said variance is requested from Section 153.029(C) "home occupations shall not include..barber s hops, beauty shops.." and is requested for a three-year period.

Ms. Kauffman stated we want to continue running the dog grooming business out of our garage, which we have done for five years.

Mrs. Boice asked if she anticipated moving the business any time. Ms. Kauffman answered I have done some thinking about that, and rent as it is out in this area, which is where my customers are, I would have to jack my prices way up. About half my customers are seniors on fixed incomes and I would lose the business and would be out of the job. So I probably will never think about moving it out.

Mrs. Boice commented I have seen that operation and it is a very neat one. It also is my understanding that you never have more than two dogs on the premises at the same time, one in a holding cage and one that is being worked on, is that correct? Ms. Kauffman responded one that is being picked up and one that is coming in, unless the customer has two dogs. Mrs. Boice wondered if there were any complaints from the neighbors, and Ms. Kauffman indicated that she had not.

Mrs. McNear commented the request is for three years; that is a long time and things do change. I would propose we grant another variance for two years. Mrs. Boice said that is a good point. Neighborhoods change, people change and this way we can monitor it in two years.

Mrs. McNear moved to grant the variance for two years and Mr. Okum seconded the motion. Mr. Squires asked if there were anyone in the audience opposed to this, and there wasnít.

Voting aye were Mrs. Boice, Mrs. McNear, Mr. Okum, Mr. Schecker and Mr. Squires. Variance was granted with five affirmative votes.

B. Hunterís Glen Limited Partnership requests variance to allow a 140 s.f. sign, 18í6" high located 14í from the I-275 right-of-way. Said variance is requested from Section 153.049(A) "..not exceeding 35 square feet in area and 10 feet in height..but not less than..15 feet from any street right-of-way line."

Stephen Hunt of Aronoff Rosen & Hunt stated with me is Terry Weitzel the Regional Manager for National Realty Management Company (property manager for the complex) and Michael Burke, Assistant Vice President of Sycamore Construction the contractor performing the renovation of the complex.

 

 

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Five

IX B HUNTERíS GLEN LIMITED PARTNERSHIP SIGN VARIANCE - continued

Mr. Hunt continued I would like to apologize for the confusion and problems relating to the installation of this sign. I have read your minutes and understand many of your concerns. Originally my client acquired that apartment complex some time last year. The original intent was to relocate the existing sign to a new location. As you are aware, the existing sign was permitted with a prior variance granted by this board.

In the course of relocating the sign, the sign fell apart and the sign company installed a new sign which wasnít properly installed; it wasnít the correct height or size nor was it installed at the correct location. After several go-rounds with the sign company, I believe we have a sign that addresses some of the concerns of this board and some of the concerns expressed to me by Mr. McErlane.

In order to maintain that sign in the location, we need a variance for three reasons:

(1) the size of the sign. The sign is 140 square feet. Your Zoning Code permits no more than 35 square feet. The previous sign variance permitted 160 square feet so we have reduced the sign size. A 35 foot sign is not practical in terms of displaying the information necessary to motorists along I-275.

(2) the height of the sign. The top is 18í-6". Your Code permits no more than 10 feet. The prior variance permitted it to be 14 feet high so we have exceeded the prior variance by 4í-6". Justification is the topography. The old sign sat on a mound and was easily visible. When they moved the sign, it is a flatter area. It originally was higher than 18í-6" and we lowered it because of your concerns, and even at this point it probably is too low but it is an acceptable height from my clientís standpoint.

(3) Your Code indicates the sign should be no more than 15í from any street right of way. We are interpreting that to mean I-275, and we are approximately 14 feet and that is due to an error on the part of the sign company. Adjoining property owners are not impacted by this sign; it is the tenants and motorists on 275 who can see the sign, so it would not be detrimental to the neighborhood or affect any governmental services being provided.

My client bought the apartment complex and invested significant sums to upgrade it. Signage is necessary to lease apartments. During the time the sign was down, the rental activity dropped off significantly and it would seem in everyoneís interests to get the apartments leased as soon as possible. If the sign were too low or too small there could be a safety issue if people tried to slow down to read it and could cause an accident.

Mrs. Boice wondered if this is dealing with the same sign you have filed your suit against the city? Mr. Hunt answered yes. This board previously denied our variance and under the Ohio Revised Code a party denied a variance can appeal your decision to the Hamilton County Commons Pleas Court which we did. The Common Pleas Judge granted an injunction preventing the city from taking any action to remove the sign. We felt it practical to try and resolve this so I got together with your law director and Mr. McErlane and discussed the specifics of the sign. I think the three of us agreed that it would be more appropriate for this board to decide the standards for the sign as opposed to a Common Pleas Court Judge dictating to the city the requirements.

 

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Six

IX B HUNTERíS GLEN LIMITED PARTNERSHIP SIGN VARIANCE - continued

Mrs. Boice responded as I recall we did decide the standards, and that is when this happened. You are basically asking for the same thing you asked for before, arenít you? Mr. Hunt answered no, since the last request for variance, the sign has been made smaller, it is below the 160í of the prior variance and it has been reduced in height. We tried to address the concerns expressed by Mr. McErlane and your attorney and in conjunction with their suggestion, we came back here tonight. We are attempting to give this board the opportunity to decide whether the sign should be permitted as opposed to a Common Pleas Court judge.

Mr. Okum commented by removing the old sign, that variance was null and void. By relocating the sign your application was for a new variance.

Mr.Hunt responded I donít agree, but I understand what you are saying. Mr. Okum continued I donít have a problem with hearing this tonight as a change. It appears that the vegetation in front of the fence has been cleared. Obviously that was for visibility. I do have some concerns with the hanging light bars on the sign. The original sign was not lit. Mr. Weitzel answered it was lit; the difference is the original sign was lit from the top down and this is lit from the bottom up. Mr. Okum said I do have a concern about children playing on those and using them as an activity area because of the height. Mr. Weitzel responded it would be very difficult for children to get up to the light; it is 8í-6" off the ground. When you see it from the highway it doesnít appear that high.

Mr. Okum continued Hunterís Glen previous owners had done a lot along the interstate area to vegetate that. Since you have eliminated vegetation in the viewing area, would you feel revegetating around the frontage would help? Right now it is very stark and sets out in the middle and that is an unfavorable aspect.

Mr. Weitzel answered I would have two concerns about that. A lot of the vegetation we took away were weeds growing in the fence. One of the reasons we took it away was because the sign is at the fence level and you canít see it. If we could agree to raise the sign more, we would be willing to put the vegetation underneath it. If we put vegetation where it is now, it will cover up the sign, because you come at such an angle down the expressway to view it. Mr. Okum stated I am not thinking of that at all. I am thinking of flanking it rather than underneath it to break the openness. Mr. Burke said the mound comes up like this and drops off precipitously on our side. The sign is on blacktop, and for us to put any type of vegetation would impact the visibility of the sign because you come at such an angle down the expressway. Mr. Weitzel added coming east or west on 275 you would lose the visibility.

Mr. Okum asked their current occupancy, and Mr. Weitzel answered we are 45% occupied. We are not finished the renovation of all 383 units. Mr. Okum asked the occupancy prior to their taking over, and Mr. Weitzel stated it was probably in the low 80ís.

Mr. Okum said if it were possible, what would you proposal be in terms of accenting this sign so we are not looking at a box setting in the middle of a field. Mr. Weitzel responded what you are asking is to make it not look so bare. Obviously that sign is very important to us because it is our number one rental source. Our intention is not just to have a nice sign; we would like to have something there to draw their attention to it during the day so it doesnít look stark. I am not prepared to tell you exactly what we would do but our intentions are to make that area nice, whether it would be flowers or some sort of decoration on the hill.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Seven

IX B HUNTERíS GLEN LIMITED PARTNERSHIP SIGN VARIANCE Ė continued

Mr. Weitzel said I am not sure what we would need to do to go out on the other side of the fence and plant flowers and maintain them, but that is something we would be willing to do. It would be to our benefit as well.

Mr. Hunt commented one thing we have done in the past is contact ODOT, and they designate portions of the right of way as wildflower areas.

Mr. Okum said I think the mutual intent is to reach a compromise that would be good for the city and good for you. I think it will take some green to do that. I think wildflowers would block the lettering. It just needs to be evergreened out in some way. If you show a 10í evergreen alongside this 18í6" sign, it will make a big impact. I do not want it in front to obstruct the sign, but to give some evergreen around the perimeter of it.

Mr. Weitzel commented I think where we have a misunderstanding of this is the fact that the sign is on a parking lot. What we see is the brim going up, which makes the bottom of the sign look like itís not on stilts. If we were to put evergreens down the side of it, that would affect the visibility going down the highway. What I would propose doing is put on that brim and on that hill some semi circle with small yews and flowers which would be more eye appealing. We can do that along that hill area and it wonít grow any higher to affect the visibility of the sign and has color. It is on the other side of the fence and we would need ODOTís permission to do this, but Iím sure it would be all right.

Mr. Burke asked how many trees Planning would like them to plant and Mr. Okum answered I was thinking four. Mr. Burke said we can plant four evergreens.

Mrs. Boice said it would seem that our attorney, the Building Department and their attorney have discussed this. Unfortunately we have not been given any feedback on exactly what this does to this pending case.

Mr. Hunt responded if the variance is granted, the case would immediately be dismissed, and that could be a condition of the variance. Mrs. Boice said I appreciate that statement, but you are not our attorney and we have not had any official feedback. I am very uncomfortable with this; to be put in a position of voting on this tonight when we have not been privy to any of these discussions and ultimately must make the final decision.

Mr. Hunt said if the board is willing to grant the variance, one of the conditions could be that the terms of the variance and dismissal of the law suit procedure needs to be approved by your attorney. If he does not approve the granting of the variances or the procedure for the dismissal the variance is denied.

Mrs. Boice responded I would prefer to table until our attorney is present.

Mrs. McNear commented I donít want this variance to be granted or disallowed on the fact that there is a lawsuit pending. I donít want to make one part of the other because I donít think they are related and I donít want to be held hostage nor do I want people to think we caved in because of the threat of a suit. We want to make sure we have all the information before us. We arenít privy to the information that you and Mr. McErlane had, and I wouldnít be in favor of granting a conditional variance with regards to this suit.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Eight

IX B HUNTERíS GLEN LIMITED PARTNERSHIP SIGN VARIANCE Ė continued

Mr. Hunt commented it wasnít my idea to come here tonight. I would have preferred to resolve this in the courts. It was the suggestion of your attorney and your compensated officials that we do this. I agreed with it; I have to be fair to my client. I donít want to bill them to come out for another hearing on the same matter, and that is why I suggested that you approve it conditionally upon the approval of Mr. Schneider. That would be fine with me, but I donít think it is fair to my client to come out for another hearing.

Mr. Schecker said given the understanding that we have of the whole picture and the prior actions taken, it seems to me we are very close to an amicable agreement with what is presented on a sign. I will support the position that we shouldnít take action until we have our own legal advice. As far as your involvement in the next meeting, the corporation can judge whether your services are necessary for another meeting, but it certainly looks proper for you to come back one more time for the variance. Mr. Hunt wondered if tabling was being suggested and conferred with his client. He stated that would be acceptable.

Mrs. Boice moved to table and Mrs. McNear seconded the motion. Voting aye ware Mrs. Boice, Mrs. McNear, Mr. Okum, Mr. Schecker and Mr. Squires. The matter was tabled to November 18th meeting.

Mr. Hunt said as I understand it, this is so the board can consult with your attorney. If he doesnít want to come or doesnít think it appropriate from an expense standpoint, he doesnít have to be here, is that correct? Mrs. Boice said and I would like to apologize for the fact that we did not have that information in hand; we should have had it and Iíll save the rest of my words for the attorney.

  1. Dan Wheeler of Target requests variances to allow the canopy at 175 Tri-County Parkway to extend 12 feet over the front yard setback. Said variance is requested from Section 153.165"..50 foot front yard setback from street right of wayÖ"
  2. Dan Wheeler, Manager for Target Management and Leasing stated I am here for a variance for the 175 Tri-County Parkway building. We recently purchased this property from The Kroger Company. There is an existing canopy that was built on the original building over 20 years ago. We discovered this on the survey and are doing some housekeeping to try to correct it. We are asking for a 12-foot plus or minus variance to allow the existing canopy to fall within the parameters of the building setback. The canopy was on the original plans in 1976.

    Mrs. Boice moved to grant the variance and Mrs. McNear seconded the motion. Mrs. Boice commented how refreshing to have someone in to clean up a mistake that was made a long time ago. Mr. Wheeler commented Iíll be back next month with another one.

    Voting aye were Mrs. Boice, Mrs. McNear, Mr. Okum, Mr. Schecker and Mr. Squires. Variance was granted with five affirmative votes.

    D. Michaelís Crafts, 425 East Kemper Road requests variance to allow them to move their existing wall sign west (47.43 square feet over allowable). Said variance is requested from Section 153.092(D)(b) "..Maximum gross area of signs = (W x 1.5) + 40 square feet."

    Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

    21 October 1997

    Page Nine

    VIII D MICHAELíS CRAFTS 425 E. KEMPER ROAD WALL SIGN Ė continued

    Karen Beaumont of United Sign Company representing Michaelís Crafts stated Michaelís Crafts has been in the area for 10-15 years. They have signs on their east elevation and on the nor5th elevation. When Russ Group subleased the area to The Woodworkers Shop, Michaelís removed a portion of the signage on the north elevation, the silk florals, frames, art supplies and crafts to allow The Woodworkers Shop to put their sign up.

    When that happened they lost 30% of the sign area that was allotted to them. Now they want to take the existing Michaelís sign and move it down several feet to center it more towards the back of the storefront. They are asking to take the sign off the wall center it more towards the end of the building. When they figured the square footage, they included the square feet on the pylon sign as well as the signage on the building and east elevation. Michaelís concern is that it is a high traffic area and they have a lot of visibility from Kemper Road, and once the sign is removed, they will lose all their visibility. The cost factor is something they are concerned about. If they would have to reduce their square footage, they would have to pay for a brand new sign. So we are asking to move the sign to the right of where it is now.

    Mr. Okum said when the gentleman was in the last time, we discussed that the façade on the front of the building had not been redone and he was going to get in touch with Michaelís about redoing the canopy. Ms. Beaumont responded they will do that; they will do whatever they have to do and we can make that a condition of the variance. Mr. Okum continued it looks bad on the east side canopy. Ms. Beaumont commented I think they were trying to see what happened after the Woodworkers Store got in and settled and then they would complete the rest of the area in the front of the building. Mr. Okum said provided they are in agreement with doing that, I would have no problem with relocating that sign.

    Mr. Squires said the diagram I have in front of me shows the sign further to the right than it really is. To me the sign looked more centered on the building. Does The Woodworkers Shop intend to put a sign on that sign as well? Ms. Beaumont said I canít speak for them at all.

    Mr. Okum moved that the variance be granted with the following condition: (1) that the sign be relocated to the center of the l7íí6" Michaelís Store area on the north wall of the building provided that the applicant and/or Michaelís redoes the mansard wall where the existing sign on the east side is. Mrs. McNear seconded the motion. Voting aye were Mrs. Boice, Mrs. McNear, Mr. Okum, Mr. Schecker and Mr. Squires. Variance was granted with five affirmative votes.

  3. Duke Associates, developer of Tri-County Marketplace, 11741 Princeton Pike (formerly Swallens) requests variance to allow wall signs exceeding 150 s.f. for all tenants, total pole sign area greater than 50 square feet (and greater than Swallens variance of 106 s.f.) and 491.5 s.f. for Petsmart total signage (274 s.f. allowed). Said variance is requested from Section 153.092(E)(1) "..A single wall sign shall not exceed 150 square feet in total area." (E)(3)"..the maximum size of any face of a pole sign shall not exceed 50 square feet in area" & Section 153.092(D)(1)(b) "Maximum gross area of signs = (W x 1.5) + 40 square feet". Duke further requests a variance to allow parking setbacks of 0í at points along the east and south lines, 6í on the east side and 4í at the southwest corner. Said variance is requested from Section 153.165(G) Referred by Planning Commission

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Ten

IX TRI-COUNTY MARKETPLACE 11741 PRINCETON PIKE Ė continued

Steven Kelley of Woolpert stated I have Greg Malone and Jay Smith of Duke Associates with me this evening. We are proposing to redevelop the property on the south side of the existing drainage swale into a commercial use. The northern building will be Comp USA and a Petsmart and Cost Plus Traders World will be in the second building. The meeting with Planning resulted in unanimous approval of the site plan, and we are before you requesting two variances, for parking setbacks and signage.

The parking setbacks are for less than 10 feet. We have the redevelopment of a site with the two businesses in the front, Star Bank and Banc One, and we are trying to align with the existing parking contiguous to our site.

The current edges of pavement with Bank One and along the south side bring the development right up to the edge of the property line. In our redevelopment of the site, we are showing landscaping that would be around the perimeter of the site. Where the buildings are located on the south side, there are some areas to get the access drives around the south side that so that we are encroaching into the less than 10 foot area. In those areas we are adding additional landscaping and you will be seeing less asphalt on the site and additional landscaping along the south side of the property.

Mr. Schecker asked if there were an interconnection between you and the other property and Mr. Kelley answered that there will be and it will be in a location mutually agreeable to both parties.

Mr. Kelley continued we discussed the signage on the property with Planning. We do have a proposal and requested variance, and a recommendation from Planning and Staff on what that signage should look like. Each of the buildings has a canopy at the entry which accents the actual signage and sign panels we are proposing. We have logos that are integrated, and we feel that the signage for all three stores is very balanced for the properties. Through the Planning Commission site approval process, we removed a sign panel proposed on the north side of CompUSA. We feel the signage is very consistent with the architecture proposed for the buildings.

Mr. Malone added the northern building is the CompUSA building. The southernmost building is the Petsmart, along with Cost Plus. We have an integrated look to the shopping center. We would like to have all three signage areas seen from 747 to identify who the tenant is and the entry and focal point for each tenant. The pylon sign request is at the south side of the entrance off 747, our single entrance to the site. We have widened that and enhanced it with two lanes in and two lanes out. The pylon sign would be positioned perpendicular to 747, while these signs would be parallel to 747.

Following the recommendations of Planning Commission we eliminated signage on the north elevation and south elevation. Regarding the pylon signage, at Ms. McBride and Mr. Okumís requests, we have eliminated a panel at the bottom of this, a future tenant panel. Mr. Okum also requested that we try to do some aesthetic enhancements around the base of this sign. Hopefully you have seen Dukeís work and the quality of our product, and this will be consistent with our other products. We will enhance this sign base with landscaping. Ms. McBride also requested that pedestrian traffic be diminished under this, so we will do something either high enough or thick enough to accommodate those requests.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Eleven

IX TRI-COUNTY MARKETPLACE 11741 PRINCETON PIKE Ė continued

Mr. Kelley added we were before Planning on Tuesday, and we got the sign revised minus the lower tenant. We do have spacing between each one of the tenants, and I believe the intention of Planning was to put some type of landscaping there. We have talked about 27 yews, an evergreen type shrub of 18" to 24". There are the existing utilities and we need to work around them. There also was talk of some type of low wall that will be placed in there. If we can get that in there with the utilities, that would be an accent to the proposed pylon sign.

Mr. Kelley said we are looking to align with Banc One and we need to make those aisles work as they are proposed. We are working with two existing businesses, and from that our parking flares out. We have tried to keep as much of a 10 foot setback along the south side as we can, and we are supplementing it with a lot of landscaping in those areas.

Mr. Okum said you did add landscaping on the corner at Banc One. Mr. Kelley commented we have slid the proposed parking down a bit made it larger and placed bushes there to give a good breakup through the parking area. We also will put evergreen trees on the north side of Comp USA.

Mr. Malone added the pylon sign we are requesting is going to be at the same approximate location as the existing sign. We have agreements with the tenants and are trying to accommodate their identity and entrance features while accomplishing an overall consistent look to the development.

Mr. Okum asked them to review the signage allowed versus the signage requested. Mr. Malone reported that 822 square feet allowed, and we are asking a total of 991 square feet for building signage and pylon signage.

Mr. Schecker asked how high the pole sign would be compared to the existing one. Mr. Malone said he didnít know the height of the existing sign. We are requesting a sign that is 33 to 34 feet and at Planningís request we reduced it to 30 feet which complies with the height requirement. There is an existing variance of 106 square feet of area, but I am not sure of the height. Mr. Okum asked the distance from the right of way line to the base of the building and Mr. Malone answered approximately 320 feet.

Mr. Schecker asked if there were any other plans for further development of this area. Mr. Malone answered we own approximately two acres north of the creek and we show on our plan future development of that phase. There are many issues that need to be discussed regarding this floodway and how we access it, storm water detention. So, we do have additional land but we donít know all the challenges to develop it. Mr. Schecker responded the reason I raised the point is because this would be the only access road to that area if this were developed; further I am thinking what would happen to the pole sign if you developed back there. Mr. Malone said we originally requested one additional panel, and we requested that for the possibility of the future tenant. We still have the ability to come back and ask for an additional sign panel at a later date, but that would be part of the second phase. Mr. Okum added that was not part of the Planning Commission consideration.

Mr. Okum stated the developer made an effort to work well with the City regarding this site. Considering the depth of the buildings from the right of way line and the two existing buildings on S.R. 747, they have shown good intent to make the full package come together.

Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes

21 October 1997

Page Twelve

IX TRI-COUNTY MARKETPLACE 11741 PRINCETON PIKE Ė continued

Mr. Okum continued regarding setbacks from property lines, they have brought about landscaping and green that was not existing on the site. They also have shown good intent by making adjustment to the pylon sign to make it blend more with the landscaping. Based on that I would like to move that the variance be granted. Mr. Schecker seconded the motion.

Mrs. Boice said for clarification, when we look at the total package, we are looking at an additional169 square feet. Mr. Schecker confirmed this. Mr. Okum modified his motion to state an additional 169 square feet.

Voting aye were Mrs. Boice, Mrs. McNear, Mr. Okum, Mr. Schecker and Mr. Squires. Variance was granted with five affirmative votes.

  1. DISCUSSION

Mrs. Boice said concerning the Hunterís Glen sign, I will be discussing this with our law director first thing in the morning. I did not like the position we were put in this evening with the pending lawsuit. We were totally unaware, and we are the ones that make the ultimate decision.

Mr. Schecker said the sign is located far back in their parking lot, and I think on the height issue they canít do anything else and we have to go along with it. When you talk about shielding the sign, how far away do they have to go? Mr. Okum responded I donít know and I donít want it obstructed, but right now it is stark. Mr. Schecker commented they simplified it also.

Mr. Okum said Sweeney has constructed their new Used Car facility and I noticed that the applicant indicated that the big Used Car sign was to be removed on completion of this project. There was supposed to be one pylon sign on Kemper Road. The GMC Used Car Sign still exists and sets on Kemper Road; that was not the intent of Planning Commissionís recommendation to this board, and I donít think it was this boardís intent either. Now if you include the Used Car sign, they are way over what we approved. Mrs. Boice asked that the Minutes be pulled on this and included in the next monthís packets.

On the Tri-County Marketplace project, Mr. Schecker wondered if parking were an issue. Mr. Okum answered that the number of parking spaces is within one or two of required.

Mr. Squires said all of you got your letter from Bill regarding the change in the Board of Zoning Appeals and hopefully got your comments back to him. Mrs. Boice said I didnít but on Page 3 under © it says each application should include "a survey by a person licensed by the State of Ohio to perform land surveys." Are we saying that this must accompany every single variance? Mr. Okum said yes, to keep a variance legal you really need that type survey done. Mr. Boice responded you are talking some expense for the homeowner. That is a matter of concern to me.

Mr. Squires commented I was very concerned about this and voiced my concern to the Building Department about it. Regarding a fence, you almost have to have a survey but utility sheds that canít be closer than five feet from the property line, we have to hold to that. Building extension is surveyable and it will help the homeowner too because of the title search later when he sells his property.

 

 

Mr. Squires said down the line I canít help think that we might be able to work something out with the Building Department that we can have some people that are certified do this. I could do it; Iím not certified to do it, but it wonít take me long to take an exam to become certified.

Mr. Schecker commented we recently quit charging people for permits and now we are gong to lay something like that on them. Mr. Okum commented it is a valid point; I agree but some of the sketches we get are so bad, it is difficult to make decisions. Mrs. Boice agreed adding that something like a side yard air conditioner or something like that, do we ask them to have a survey? I apologize that I didnít get my comments in to the Building Department, but I would like to have a conversation on this at the zoning meeting. Iíll get there late but Iíll be there.

Mr. Okum commented there is a check off procedure that we will use for submissions to Planning, and maybe what is required should go into that check off for the Board of Zoning Appeals and not be incorporated into the Zoning Code.

Mrs. Boice asked when the signs concerning the BZA public hearings going up. Mrs. Webb reported that the purchase order is waiting for signature before the signs being ordered.

Mr. Okum commented with the proposed changes in the Zoning Code, it may mean changes in the meeting schedule for one of the two commissions, either Planning or BZA due to the notifications that will be required.

XI ADJOURNMENT

Mrs. Boice moved for adjournment and Mr. Okum seconded the motion. By voice vote, all present voted aye, and the Board of Zoning Appeals adjourned at 8:50 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

_________________ 1997 ___________________________

James Squires, Chairman

 

 

_________________,1997 ____________________________

Barbara Ewing, Secretary