The Board of Zoning Appeals met on Monday, June 21, 2004 at 7:30
p.m. In attendance were Mr. Monnett, Mr. Blevins, Mr. Cavanaugh and
ROLL CALL/DETERMINATION OF QUORUM
Mr. Carlucci administered the roll call.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Mr. Monnett made a motion to approve the May 17, 2004 minutes of
the Plainfield Board of Zoning Appeals as submitted. Second by Mr.
Blevins. Motion carried.
Mr. Cavanaugh said let me state for the record that I abstained
from voting because I was not a member of the BZA at that meeting.
OATH OF TESTIMONY
Mr. Daniel administered the Oath of Testimony.
Mr. Matrana said at this time I would like to welcome a new BZA
member, Mr. Kevin Cavanaugh. It is nice to have you aboard. And also
at this time I would like to ask Attorney Mel Daniel would you please
administer the Oath of Office.
Mr. Daniel swore in Mr. Cavanaugh to the Plainfield Board of
Mr. Matrana reviewed the Guidelines Governing the Conduct of Public Hearings. The first item before the board tonight is BZA-04-007 concerning the Calvary Baptist Church.
Mr. Higbee said this is a Variance of Development Standards. Some of you may know that they were in here for a Special Exception some time ago for an expansion of the church. That was approved and when we were out doing inspections for what was constructed pursuant to that approval, we noticed a gravel parking area in the rear of the new building expansion. That gravel parking area wasn’t on the original
approved plans. What had shown on the original plans was a turn around back there, which was never constructed but instead this expansion parking area, a rather small parking area was put in and was left in gravel. After looking at that carefully I determined that it didn’t need another Special Exception because it fell completely within the boundaries of the previous Special Exception. It was just a matter that the improvements got constructed differently than the previous improvements that were approved. Specifically because the parking area is gravel and our ordinance has a requirement that parking areas have to be paved within six months we informed them that they should either pave that parking area or seek a variance to allow it to be there. If I understand the petitioner’s representative correctly, they would like a temporary variance because there is a plan to do further expansion on the building. That is why they don’t want to pave and we were aware of that. When the original Special Exception came in, they did indicate that there would be another phase for further expansion going to the rear. So, they feel that paving that would be a problem or needless knowing that they may build another expansion soon. But that does require a variance if it is going to remain in gravel.
Mr. Craig Brighton said I’m a member at Calvary Baptist Church. I
live at 7416 South 825E, Plainfield. Also, I have been working with
the church in some of the additions and the future expansions that are proposed. I kind of came into Calvary Baptist Church at the time which the latest addition had already been under construction. So, I became interested in that project in watching it through in helping to get through a lot of the inspections and getting the final CO on this project. The church has been experiencing a rapid growth and
financially sound. We are looking to expand even further within the
next two years. For my own personal experience I can say that I have
not been involved with a church that has grown so rapidly but it has
been very interesting to me to see how it has been developing. When I
first started attending Calvary Baptist Church three years ago, they
were the size of about 150. Today Sunday morning we are running 300 to 350 so within the next two years at that rate of growth it is
anticipated that the other half of that sanctuary building would need
to be completed. As Mr. Higbee had stated, we didn’t want to pave an
area that would need to be torn up immediately again. So, that is
basically the interest here of the request.
Mr. Brighton said it is 110 and on the plan I think it was 150 x
110. I don’t have that plan with me.
Mr. Monnett asked, 112 x 100 does that sound right?
Mr. Brighton said I believe that is approximate.
Mr. Brighton said it did fall within the original development
plan area. It is not outside of that area.
Mr. Monnett asked, are there doors or anything on the south side
of the church that goes to that gravel lot or is that just a wall?
Mr. Brighton said only west. The north is the top of your page and on the west there is two pair of double doors that face that parking lot.
Mr. Matrana asked, are the church members talking about future church expansion in the near term or very little talk about construction right now?
Mr. Brighton said I have my associate minister here and he can
probably give you a better idea of that.
Mr. Matrana said because a gravel parking lot is kind of temporary. If you had some plans, we would like to know about the plans to expand.
Mr. Brighton said in the original design of this building it is
designed that it is a half of sanctuary and it was designed originally to do just what we are proposing here to build this other half of that sanctuary. Which would bring the capacity to about 450.
Mr. Matrana asked, is there anyone in the audience who has
anything to say either for or against a possible gravel parking lot
being extended? Being no one coming forward we will close the public
portion of the meeting and open this up for discussion by the board
members for a possible motion on the gravel parking lot extension.
Mr. Cavanaugh said I have a question for Mr. Higbee. Do we have any record of any complaints or other issues pertaining to the gravel
parking lot at the church?
Mr. Higbee said no not that I’m aware of.
Mr. Monnett asked, have any of you guys been down behind the church or seen it from walking on the Hummel track?
Mr. Matrana said not recently no.
Mr. Cavanaugh said not recently.
Mr. Matrana asked, when did the six month extension expire? How long was it since they were here?
Mr. Higbee said truthfully I don’t know when the gravel parking
lot was put in. It was some time ago. Maybe a couple of years ago I’m
thinking that the Special Exception was approved. That doesn’t mean
the parking lot has been there that long. They did some building on
the site, etc. and I think the parking lot probably went in toward the end of all of that.
Mr. Matrana asked, do you think about a year ago?
Mr. Higbee said you probably better ask them on that. I can only tell you that we discovered it fairly recently. How long it was there I’m not sure.
Petitioner in the audience said March.
Mr. Carlucci said I haven’t been down there but actually you have a hard time seeing that area back there. It is very difficult. You can’t see it from the road. I’ve never noticed the gravel lot and a
lot of times that I’m down there it is when they are not having
services anyway so you don’t see cars parked back there.
Mr. Cavanaugh said I think with its location basically behind the
building, and there is quite an expanse of existing asphalt to get to
the street to gravel, from the gravel to the street, that it doesn’t
appear to be an issue to the local residents.
Mr. Monnett said the time frame is what I’m thinking about or the
extension is what I want to say.
Mr. Cavanaugh asked, do you currently have any plans underway for
expansion or even to start talking about a building design of any type?
Mr. Brighton said to my knowledge there is not other than what had originally been designed as the other shell of that building.
Mr. Cavanaugh said so you have some existing plans for the second
phase but nothing active to start anything.
Mr. Brighton said to my knowledge no.
Mr. Cavanaugh said with the time frame I don’t want to make an
administrative headache for the Staff or propose something that is
unrealistically short or unrealistically too long. My initial reaction is something like perhaps two years with a stipulation that at the time that the expansion takes place that we have some gravel area to be paved regardless of the final outcome of the building design. So, I would move to approve BZA-04-007 subject to the following condition:
Substantial compliance with the plot plan file dated April 15, 2004 with a two year life span to this variance. Furthermore that any and all gravel areas be paved in conjunction with any future building expansion within this time period.
Second by Mr. Monnett. Roll call vote called.
Mr. Monnett – yes
Mr. Blevins – yes
Mr. Cavanaugh – yes
Mr. Haase – absent
Mr. Matrana – yes
4-ayes, 0-opposed, 1-absent. Motion carried.
Mr. Matrana said the next matter before the board is BZA-04-009,
Mr. Daniel said for those of you in the audience who are not familiar with this board the Board of Zoning Appeals is a five member board. It is my understanding that Mr. Cavanaugh is going to recuse himself from the Stoops Buick, the Plainfield Community School Corporation and the Thomas Meggenhofen items. For this board to take action on any petition it requires a majority vote of the entire board, which means three votes. So, on those three items with Mr. Cavanaugh recusing himself it will take a unanimous vote of three members that are here tonight. So, if any one of those three petitioners would like to ask this board to continue their hearing to another night when more board members are here, you should feel free to do that at this time.
Mr. Bud Green with Stoops Buick said we have no problem with Mr.
Cavanaugh and wonder why he feels it necessary to recuse himself from
Mr. Cavanaugh said you are a client of my employer on this case. I work for Banning Engineering.
Mr. Green said I’m sorry my fault.
Mr. Cavanaugh said, therefore, I felt the recusement was the best
course of action. Other than that I would be happy to hear it.
Mr. Thomas Meggenhofen said I’m interested also in your reason.
Mr. Cavanaugh said I’m a member of the architecture review committee for the Hawthorn Ridge Board of Directors and I feel that it is proper to ask myself to recuse in case there would be any conflict in that relationship.
The petitioners chose to proceed.
Mr. Higbee said you can see from the top of your Staff Report that this has been here before. So, here today is the result of a continuance. The continuance was asked for most recently because the
petitioner wanted to speak to an adjacent property owner, I believe the person that he bought the property from if I’m not mistaken. And about the design of the sign they wanted a little additional time to consider that. After doing so they decided to go forward with the same sign design that you saw when it was here before. If you recall, it is what I refer to as a pedestal style pylon sign approximately 100 square feet in size and 20 feet in height. The site would be classified as an outlot of an integrated center. That gives rise to the variance request because under our Zoning Ordinance outlots are only permitted a maximum 48 square foot, six foot tall ground sign. Even though this is a slightly larger outlot being four or five acres in size I believe it is still classified as an outlot because of the way the center was platted and built. It is considered a lot that is associated with all of those other surrounding lots. So, you can see that it is substantially different than what is permitted by the Zoning Ordinance.
I pointed out in my Staff Report that there have been other instances in Town where single use sites have been granted variances for signs that are larger than what would otherwise be permitted. But I’m not aware, at least in my tenure of over five years, where there has ever been an instance where an outlot was allowed to have a pylon or a pole sign. I wanted to point that out to you. Having said that there are some single use sites that are roughly similar in size that may have a sign that is approximately equivalent to what they are asking for. It may not be obvious to the normal passerby that you are dealing with a different kind of site but under our ordinance it is
classified as an outlot. It is on SR267 and then also Airwest Boulevard and Agan Drive, if you know where that area is and there are some office buildings in that general area. And then as you go back farther to the east, you have some industrial development, the big box industrial back there to the east.
Wall signs are also included in your packets to give you a feel for what the overall sign package is. Those are not part of tonight’s
request. The wall signs do appear to be in compliance with the
ordinance so you are not voting on those or acting on those tonight.
They are there only for informational purposes. That would also be
true of the incidental signs, the small directional signs near the
entries, etc. Those appear to be in compliance and are not part of
this request either. They are just there for purposes of you
understanding the overall signage on the site. I would be happy to
answer any questions that you have.
Mr. Matrana asked, would this require a variance if it was a regular stand alone lot?
Mr. Higbee said it depends on what the frontage of this is and with all of these continuances I have kind of forgotten what the amount of street frontage is on this site. It has been several months since it first came in but the size of the sign for a single use site can have is larger depending on the length.
Gentleman from the audience said it is over 400 feet.
Mr. Higbee said I could look it up for you. I think I know what it is but I don’t want to guess wrong. If it were a single use site and if it has between 300 and 500 feet of frontage, it would be permitted 100 square feet. So, actually the size of sign falls within what would be permitted for that amount of frontage, the square footage
size of the sign.
Mr. Matrana said so the problem is that they are an outlot and the Airwest Industrial Park doesn’t have signage for them.
Mr. Higbee said yes there is no integrated center sign for them. If you have been out there, you will see a very large ground sign that identifies the center but it doesn’t have anything on it to accommodate for tenants like you can have on an integrated center sign.
Mr. Carlucci said there is a good reason for that because that would include the entire industrial park, which would be 1,200-1,300 acres. That would be one big sign to get all of those names on there. That is probably one reason.
Mr. Tom Nealy with the Sign Group at 5370 W. 84th St., Indianapolis said I would like to start off and present what we have and why we are doing it. And then I’m sure Mr. Meyers can answer any questions that you might have from him too and he is here.
I’m not sure but I think you all have this package and that is the sign in question. The actual square footage of the sign is not 100 square feet but it is 81 square feet. The sign itself is about 75
square feet and the GM logo is an additional five square feet so almost six square feet. We are looking at 81 square feet and the overall height is 20 instead of the six and the variance is for the additional square footage and the height. Obviously, with the size of the property there and the traffic flow we felt that it was necessary to increase the height. If you will notice some of the pictures that were given to you that were taken just a little while ago, during the
daytime a lower monument sign gets blocked out quite frequently. It is just nice to be able to get that up in the air and it helps identify the business and it helps the customers to be able to locate where they are going to turn in. It is a very heavily trafficked street and the traffic is a lot of trucks and the 20 foot overall height is really not excessive. In fact, the Fifth Third Bank has a 20 foot square foot sign and they are next door to them. The overall height and size of the sign is obviously a lot smaller than what they have right now. They have eliminated one wall sign and they have non-lighted signs reading Stoops on the front of the building. And everything has been kept architecturally from the aesthetic standpoint in very good shape. But it would behoove the passersby. It would behoove everybody to be able to read the sign and see the sign from a distance. Their peers have larger signs than this and this is a very well made sign and it is an aesthetically pleasing sign also. It is very understated as is the total signage package that you have in front of you for the lettering on the building. I think it would be very important for them to be able to get that sign in the air so that you can see it because as those pictures point out, it really is blocked out if you have anything that is only six feet high. It is very difficult to see especially with this type of establishment where you have a lot of people looking for it from a customer’s standpoint and a supplier’s standpoint, etc. So, we respectfully would submit to you people that we receive the approval for this particular design. I would be happy to answer any questions that I could.
Mr. Matrana asked, how long has Stoops Buick been at that location now?
Gentleman from the audience said 14 years in October.
Mr. Matrana asked, is there anyone in the audience who would like to speak on the signage matter for Stoops Buick either for or against?
Mr. Bud Green said I’m appearing as the consultant for the owner and petitioner. We sought to do several things with this project knowing that signs are such a sensitive issue especially on the corridor avenues in Town. One of the decisions that we made early on and went through with the Design Review Committee and the Town Staff was that there would be limited signage on the building. I think, as Mr. Higbee said, we managed to make every other sign on this project
fall within the parameters of the ordinance. We even went so far with
the building signage on the front to make it non-illuminated. We
thought about shadow lighting and decided that was going to attract
more birds. We have eliminated some of the illuminated signage on the
building in order to give the building its understated look. We
purposely designed this building with multiple textures and multiple
colors to be a little warmer and friendlier than the typical white box, straight up and down dealership that you see. We wanted it to be a friendlier place. The other thing that we did was did not have the
huge expanses of glass. It is a little self serving in that because it is a little more energy efficient but you are less prone to see those types of windows painted with balloons and stripes and “buy here”/”buy now”, etc. So, the whole intent of the property was to make it a dignified and pleasant place to do business.
The pictures that you see were taken last Friday. I think the
date and time is on there. Those were taken seated in the driver’s seat
of my vehicle at that intersection. We didn’t stand up on a ladder to
make it worse or get down on the ground and shoot up. The original
thought was we would have to take pictures of semi trailers but guess
what? We found out that the normal prospective from a driver’s
position on all four corners of that intersection was such that normal
passenger traffic, light trucks, pickups, small trucks, almost
obliterated the front view of the building let alone any signage that
would be on the frontage. So, that gave us just a little more reason
to petition for the variance for, I guess Mr. Higbee calls it, a
modified pylon. Understand that Buick does not give us a lot of
latitude in what they allow for signs. They gave specific designs that we pick among them. They do not have currently in their raptor a
ground sign that fits within the standards of this ordinance. One of
the things that I noticed, as you see in those pictures, is as they
turn into Stanley from any direction and look back towards to the
dealership, there is the Airwest development sign, which effectively
blocks any ground sign that we might have in place. Comparing our sign to the bank sign, we just kind of like to be on equal footing with our neighbors and the other dealers in Town. The other point I would like to make about that is when we talk about automobile dealerships, Mr. Matrana you asked how long they had been there the store. The store has actually been in operation since 1961 or 1962 when Tom Costin built it. It has been a continuous single point operating Buick Dealership since that time. We will continue to be an automobile dealership when we vacate. We will be taking down a 36 foot sign. When we ask for this 20 footer, we will also be abandoning a second used car sign so in terms of total signage on your frontage out here we are going to be reducing by several square feet and by one actual sign for this application. Car dealers are coming gentlemen. There are going to be more and I expect to have to be here again. We urge your consideration of this request. Thank you.
Mr. Monnett asked, how many entrances or egresses are there?
Mr. Green said that is something that I should have brought up. One of the reasons that we think it is very important to have the pylon
is, and it almost pains us to say this when we talk about Buick because I’m in that demographic now, but Buick has been the old man’s car for a long time and if you are past 60, I guess I qualify. We know that we are going to have some customers who will find it difficult to understand that our entrances are actually in the back of the dealership. As our site plan clearly shows, you must go around Agan or around Stanley to get in. In some parts of the country that is not a problem. That is a little bit of a new thing for folks here so we think it is kind of important that when some of these folks are
motoring down the highway that they be able to see that pylon. It is
going to be hard enough for them to find the driveway. That is the
reason that we put rather small and rather subdued signs at eye level. You notice the back entrance signs are out the windshield so we think we can get our demographic in there. Without having a commercial we are getting a newer product so maybe we can get some younger customers. The height is important to us. It can be seen over traffic. It will identify the site from either north or south down the freeway. When you talk about us being a single use site verses an outlot, and when you consider that the whole original section is bounded by Town streets or a State highway on all sides, we are using about 80% of available ground there. It is kind of hard to call us the outlot and the other guy something else. So, we think we kind of fit into a category that says the variance should be granted. Thank you.
Mr. Carlucci said I can’t remember the bank that was there. Was it the NBD Bank that was there? What bank was there before? The only
reason that I bring that up was that was a legal non-conforming use
sign that was there originally before part of this ordinance that is in effect now. I can’t remember how that was zoned. I know that area was rezoned just recently, maybe about a year ago, from Office District to General Commercial at the request of Mr. McNaught. So, the Fifth Third Bank like a lot of signs are legal non-conforming uses that are still left over from a prior ordinance. What happened was when they came in, they knew enough not to take down the sign but just replace the inserts, which they did.
Mr. Higbee said the lot north of the Stoops site is still zoned Office District so that whole area around there is a mixture of Office and General Commercial because of the recent rezoning.
Mr. Carlucci said it was under the old Zoning Ordinance and not
the new one.
Mr. Higbee said an interesting wrinkle that popped up I wanted to
mention because that sign came up that Mr. Meyers asked me to pull the sign permit for that bank. This is a permit that would have been issued a number of years ago. He asked me what the height of the sign was and our permit showed I believe it was 14 or 12 feet. I have forgotten the exact height now but it wasn’t anything near 20 feet. Mr. Meyers probably remembers it better than I do but I discussed it with him over the telephone and we still have that permit down in our files. Somehow that sign became 20 feet because Mr. Meyers has gone out and measured it and told me that it was 20 feet. Apparently what is there doesn’t match what our permit says should be there for that sign. In addition it would have been legal non-conforming if it had been correctly installed. Apparently it was installed at a taller height and we did not know that.
Mr. Carlucci said I might make a suggestion that if the board is open to the idea of approving the variance, you might want to consider locking in those wall signs that they talk about that are smaller. Because they are talking about giving up some signage on the building for this sign, if I have that correct. Some of your wall signs are actually smaller and it sounds like they are saying we will exchange that for a bigger pylon sign.
Mr. Nealy said a clarification of that is one of the signs was
eliminated. There was a body type sign on one elevation that they
eliminated and most of them are permitted.
Mr. Carlucci asked, are they the maximum size?
Mr. Nealy said no sir they are not.
Mr. Carlucci said that was the point that I was trying to get to. If they are not at the maximum size, would you still have room to make those signs bigger if you wanted to?
Mr. Nealy said yes.
Mr. Carlucci said it’s not a quid prop quo but you are saying that you have a pylon sign but we made these other signs smaller when we could have made them larger. And then take them at their word and say that they have to stay that way. As far as the other problem with the other signs at their existing site does Costin own the property or does Stoops own the property, the existing dealership?
Mr. Green said Mr. Costin still owns the property. It is an important distinction to understand that the sign belongs to General Motors. We don’t own it. Come and get it, take it down, cut it up in little pieces because they don’t like for them to be reused. Our sign will be completely new. They have hired Sign Group to be the constructor and installer and then they have a national group that will come along and maintain it. So, you can be assured it won’t be sitting there half the time with the lights out or dirt in the faces that you
can see. I believe that will take care of the 36 foot sign. A case
could probably be made that the used car sign goes with the real
estate. You are going to have another automobile dealer come in and
make application to put a product sign up for his dealership when that property changes lease hands. It will be a tenant property. I think we agreed to get rid of the used car sign. Mr. Costin I believe is aware of that so we are basically going to get rid of the two that are there. The new tenant will then have to come before you folks and talk about his sign package.
Mr. Matrana asked, is there anyone in the audience who would like to speak for or against the Stoops Buick sign package? Being no one
coming forward I will open the meeting up to the board members for
discussion and a possible motion on the Stoops Buick signage. Mr. Monnett made a motion to approve BZA-04-009 subject to the following conditions:
Substantial compliance with the site plan, pylon sign location plan, sign base landscape plan and pylon sign renderings file dated 3/18/04.
The removal of the old signage including the used car sign from the current location at 2170 E. Main St., Plainfield. And that the wall signs on the new building remain as they are in our packets, not to be any larger.
Mr. Matrana said the next item to come before the board is BZA-04- 014, a Special Exception concerning Brentwood Elementary School.
Mr. Higbee said as you will note from your packets, this request is to place modular classroom units at the Brentwood School on the north side of the building. I estimated the size. I don’t know if that is precise. Maybe when the petitioner comes up, they can tell us the exact size. I said 24’ x 82’ modular units. There would be two of them side by side to the north of the existing school. As it was explained to me by a representation of the schools, this would be something that would be temporary in their mind. Meaning that they would use them perhaps for a few years, four years or something and then take them down and not need them again. It is to accommodate their shuffling of students among schools and not actually a future expansion of the building or anything. A lot of times you would see these modular units come in temporarily and then there would be a permanent expansion of the school facility itself. But that is not the plan in this case.
In the Zoning Ordinance there are specific sections in there for
modular units and how they should be handled and what it indicates that if they are placed there on a temporary basis, they are permitted as a Special Exception Use. But then they would need to be reviewed annually by the Board of Zoning Appeals to demonstrate that progress is being made toward the objective of removing them. The idea is that these kinds of units are never supposed to be permanent. Now I will tell you what most people say is temporary is different than what the ordinance says. Our ordinance says that if it is there longer than two years, it is not temporary. One year and then with a maximum one year extension but two years maximum and then it would not be considered temporary. It is my understanding this would be there maybe four years, which is why I specified I believe in your request variance of the requirement that it could only be there temporary. So, the Special Exception to allow the placement of the structure plus a variance to have them for more than two years is what this request is for.
As I mentioned, they would be placed north of the building that shows on your plot plan. There is a residential area to the north relatively close to where these structures would be. They provided for a landscape row on the north side of the structures. After visiting the site it looked to me like only two or three lots of the abutting residential subdivision to the north would really be impacted by the placement of these structures. After that you get far enough away that I don’t think people will really notice anything different than what they already notice with the school being there. They will see the structures but they are far enough away that it is probably really not impacting them directly. That is just a personal opinion. I would be happy to answer any questions that you have.
Mr. Matrana asked, if they only wanted this Special Exception for two years, then they wouldn’t need a variance at all or they would still need a variance?
Mr. Higbee said they would still need a Special Exception but they would not need a variance.
Mr. Monnett asked, do you know what kind of landscaping they are
providing? Are they shrubs?
Mr. Higbee said I believe so yes.
Mr. Tim Jackson said I’m the Assistant Superintendent for the
Plainfield Community School Corporation. I live at 985 Longfellow Dr.,
Plainfield. We have been experiencing growth in our school corporation.
Fortunately not as rapid as some of our neighbors but in our last three
years we have been seeing growth of about 86 students on an average.
That kind of growth eventually catches up with you and you run out of
space. That is what we are approaching at this particular time. We have
analyzed all of our three elementary schools and found that the best
location for portable classroom units is at Brentwood. Central
Elementary is very locked in with the Quaker Church just to the west
and the street to the east. We would have to approach the Quaker
Church to put modular units on that site. We think that would be
inappropriate. At Van Buren we just added four permanent classrooms
two years ago. That site is rapidly running out of space also.
Brentwood on the north side, and there is a drawing and an aerial in
your packet, we have an area that would be fairly secluded and fairly
safe. In fact, based upon our measures we could get eight modular
classroom units that would be north of the building and just east of
the playground area. It would be very convenient to the doors going
into the north side of the building for security and access for the
students. We have in mind using the portables for one of two purposes. One is for pre-school special education. Those students are ages three to five. They are in for a half day basis and we limit the number of students to 10 students per classroom. These modular units measure out at 1,056 square feet. It is a little bit bigger than a normal classroom. A normal classroom built today would be 800 square feet. The modular units would have restrooms in them, both boys and girl’s restrooms with handicap access. We will put them in at a quad. We looked at putting one or two units in. We felt that the best thing to do was put four units in at a time and in the center of those four
units put a metal pre-constructed ramp, a handicap ramp access that
would fit right in the middle of the quad. You could then get into any of the four buildings. Two of the units will be placed together, front to back with a door in between so that a teacher can access both units and then the stairway or ramp in the center. As Mr. Higbee stated, we want to put plantings on the north side between our buildings and the neighbors. And then it is not required by the ordinance, as we understand, but on the east side we want to put plantings also for screening as well as security. We don’t want cars driving off the road and missing the turn and driving into the buildings. We plan to put some decent sized spruce trees in to help with the screening and security.
You will notice on the drawings also a little fenced in area. I think it says playground. If those classrooms are used for pre-school, there will be a pre-school playground area, small sized miniature playground equipment on a six-inch mulch base in that playground area.
As Mr. Higbee stated, this is temporary. We are in the process right now of planning a new building for the school corporation. The plans, as they exist, would call for a new high school. The existing high school would then be used by the middle school. The existing middle school would be used by the lower grades either for fourth and fifth or fifth and sixth according to the transition plan we put together. That would free up room in the elementary schools. Right now they are first through fifth so that would free up either one or two grade levels at the elementary schools and then we would move these portables off site. We had portables one other time at the middle school. They were there until we could build an addition to the building. In this case, as Mr. Higbee stated, we don’t plan to build onto Brentwood. We plan to open space that is currently in the
Just to give you an idea of cost these modular units we purchased
used from a school corporation on the north side of Indianapolis in
Lawrence Township. We purchased all four of them for $10,000.00.
These units new would run over $40,000.00. We have to have them
retrofit with the restrooms. We are in the process of contracting that at this particular time. We have to have them moved onto the site so we will probably have $45,000.00 - $50,000.00 in the total package. New classrooms in today’s market are about $110.00 a square foot and when you just had four classrooms to a building, the price goes higher. So, it is probably going to range closer to $120.00-$125.00. That would put this at over $400,000.00. So, the modular units are far more economical for the taxpayers. It is short term and we want to be the best neighbor that we can so we are going to landscape them and take care of the outside. There will be skirting around them also.
Mr. Monnett said you mentioned the three and five year old preschool
students. Were they part of the kindergarten center last year?
Mr. Jackson said right now we think if the enrollment holds, we are going to be able to keep those students there for this next year. We are watching the enrollment. It is always a guessing game at this
particular time but they are at the high school adjacent to the
kindergarten. Mr. Higbee was asking for clarification and there are
four units. They are placed nose to tail and not side by side with the ramp in the center.
Mr. Matrana said thank you very much Mr. Jackson. That was an
excellent explanation. You answered all of my questions that I had and I had a few. It was very good. Thank you very much for making it
clear. Is there anyone in the audience who has any comments either for or against the Special Exception for Brentwood School? Being no one coming forward the Chair will close the public portion of this meeting and open it up for board members for discussion and a possible motion.
Mr. Monnett said Mr. Higbee I know they are requesting four years. Even if it was two years like the ordinance says, is it renewed once a year?
Mr. Higbee said yes. There is a requirement that you annually review it with the goals of removing them. Typically you would say that we want them there for up to two years under the temporary provisions and we will demonstrate after a year that we are moving toward whatever is necessary to remove them. That is how the language is written. It is written with the understanding that they would only
normally be there for two years.
Mr. Carlucci said that condition was added several years ago because it wasn’t only schools using these units but churches, basically churches and schools that were adding these units. Quite honestly we don’t have churches now with any modular units or schools so the process seems to work pretty well. But they were concerned about those going on without some kind of discussion back and forth on a yearly basis to check on the goals.
Mr. Monnett made a motion to approve BZA-04-014 requesting a Special Exception Use and variance for the location of a temporary use for up to four years subject to the following conditions:
Mr. Matrana said the next order before the board is BZA-04-015
concerning the public library.
Mr. Higbee said this is another Special Exception request for a sign for the library. You will all probably recall the location of the existing sign out on Stafford Road. That is a rather old sign. If you walk up to it and inspect it, you can see that it is in need of
maintenance. The sign that is in your packet is a brick based sign
with an LED panel unit on it that would be put in approximately the
same location to identify the library.
A couple of issues are the library is in a Residential District, which is what gives rise to the Special Exception request to begin
with. But also it was discovered after a little more detail review of
the sign that variances are required because of the size of the sign.
In a residential zoning district with a Special Exception Use such as a school, library or church the sign sizes are more restrictive than they are in a Commercial District. The maximum size sign is 32 square feet in a Residential District for a Special Exception Use. So, this
particular sign I initially estimated at 52 square feet and put that in your Staff Report. Then I measured it a little more closely and came up with 56 square feet. In any case it is bigger than the permitted 32 square feet in a Residential District. That is not before you tonight because the need for that didn’t get discovered until after this was filed. And the petitioner is going to be coming back to another BZA for the increased area as well as the LED being a type of intermittent lighting sign is specifically prohibited by the Zoning Ordinance. Flashing or intermittent signs with the exception of time and temperature signs are not permitted in our ordinance at all. It wasn’t even known to me when I talked to the petitioner’s architect before this was filed. He mentioned changeable copy to me but I don’t believe he specifically mentioned an LED. This came in and I noticed that it was an LED and called them to inform him that was going to require another variance. Neither one of those variances is in front of you tonight because they got discovered after this came in and after the legal notices went out. I called the petitioner’s architect and asked them knowing that they are going to have to come back for those variances anyway so would they like to defer their Special Exception until a later hearing? And they requested to go ahead and have the Special Exception heard tonight even though they know they need to come back for the variance.
So, the request before you tonight is only the Special Exception. It is not the variances. There is a complying sign base landscape plan that was provided. Again, the sign is a brick base with an LED panel on it.
I mention several things under the Staff Comments, Questions and
Concerns letting you know again about those variances and some other
comments but I won’t repeat those here. I would just answer any
questions that you have.
Mr. Cavanaugh said, as you said, this is really just for the Special Exception to allow use of the ground sign and really has no bearing on approval or disapproval for the LED nature of the sign itself.
Mr. Higbee said I think you can look at it that way. It is just
basically saying do we want to allow a sign in that location? If you
want to look at it in sort of that narrow way, you probably could. Mr. Daniel do you have an opinion on that?
Mr. Daniel said you are exactly right. That is all that is before the board tonight. You would be limited this evening in just looking at that issue.
Mr. Monnett asked, and they didn’t want to continue it?
Mr. Higbee said no. I didn’t want them to waste a trip knowing that they would have to come back but I just think they wanted to get the discussion out here tonight.
Mr. Carlucci said maybe part of the theory is if they don’t get the Special Exception, the other two would be mute. So, they might as
well at least get that out of the way and get the sense of what the BZA feels on the Special Exception. That is how I would have looked at it.
Why wait another month? Just have that come up first and get approved
and it would save other filings and fees and other things like that.
Mr. John Beam said I’m an architect with a company called BCR
Architectural Concepts out of Noblesville. That address is 15222
Paraman Boulevard. The reason for the request for the Special
Exception is obviously we have a public use facility, a public library in a residential area. We see a need for the sign, the identification sign for the library, to be larger than the allowed 32 square feet. As you have already discussed, the existing sign was there before the substantial addition and renovation at the library recently. Obviously, some equipment during that project ran into the sign and it is worn and dented and is need of replacement.
The sign, as you see before you, is obviously a much more substantial sign. We think it also lends itself to compliment the architecture of the library in that the brick used in the sign would match the brick at the library. There is a band of limestone near the base and also at the top of the sign there would actually be a metal shroud or cap on top of the sign with the actual identification of the library in muted green color. I think you have a color copy of that elevation there. That is really the basis of this request for the Special Exception. I will entertain any questions that you may have.
Mr. Carlucci said I go by there all of the time and I’m always looking at that. I also go by there at night. There is wall lettering
there now that faces to the south of Stafford Road. Since that sign on the ground is not lit or not working you can go by that building and you don’t know what building you are by if you haven’t been in Town before. So, do they have any plans to light that?
Mr. Beam said yes. As part of this project, you have the master
landscape. The project, as it is encompassed, is a re-landscaping of
the entire site and included in that will be some site lighting and
included in that will be a couple of ground spots to illuminate that
Mr. Carlucci said I was hoping that they would light that wall so
that people will know what they are going by.
Mr. Beam said in discussions in that project they realized they used some dark letters on that wall sign and the brick is dark so those letters are hard to see sometimes even in the daytime.
Mr. Matrana asked, is there anyone in the audience who would like to speak on the library sign? Being no one coming forward we will close the public hearing and open it up to the board for discussion and a motion.
Mr. Cavanaugh said I think the petitioner should be prepared for some of the issues that Mr. Higbee mentioned regarding the flashing nature or the different capabilities of an LED equipped sign. Which I don’t think is specifically covered within the ordinance as far as an LED light type goes. As far as the Special Exception goes, I would move to approve BZA-04-015 requesting a Special Exception Use. This motion is just to approve the Special Exception Use subject to the following conditions:
Subject to substantial compliance with the site plan and sign elevation file dated May 21, 2004.
This is not an approval of the sign type.
Second by Mr. Monnett. Roll call vote called.
Mr. Monnett – yes
Mr. Blevins – yes
Mr. Cavanaugh – yes
Mr. Haase – absent
Mr. Matrana – yes
4-ayes, 0-opposed, 1-absent. Motion carried.
Mr. Matrana said the next request before the board is BZA-04-016,
Thomas Meggenhofen, Variance of Development Standards on a building.
Mr. Higbee said this is a property located on Deborah Court on
the end of a cul-de-sac. I actually had that shaded in on your Staff
Report. The shading may not have come out on the photo copies very
well but if you look at where Deborah Court is, it comes off of Hadley Road and then it is a little “L” shaped cul-de-sac. And then at the southeast corner or quadrant or circle there is where the lot in question would be. Mr. Meggenhofen doesn’t know this yet but I
received late in the day today a fax from a neighbor voicing
opposition. I hadn’t heard from anybody prior to today on this in
terms of any for or against. I wanted to pass this letter around and
then Mr. Meggenhofen may want to look at it too. That is expressing
some concerns about the proposed structures.
There are two structures being proposed, both accessory units to be back behind the home. One would be 30’ x 30’ and one would be 24’ x 24’. You may recall that I have spoken of this in recent hearings that we have done a Zoning Ordinance amendment to change the amount of total accessory space that is permitted in a Residential District. That actually did go through the third reading at the Town Council and could have been adopted except for one thing. There was an amendment to one of the articles that happened so that amendment now has to go, as was explained to me by our attorney, back to the Plan Commission before it can be officially adopted as an ordinance. But having said that it has essentially gone through the process of adoption. When that ordinance is fully adopted, the size issue that is talked about in the Staff Report, the amount of square footage, would no longer be an issue. Because we have increased the amount of storage space or accessory space that is permitted. Now it would be allowed to be up to the size of the residential living area. It used to be up to 50% of the size of that area. Now it is going to be up to 100% of the size of the area. So, these two structures would not equal that and would comply with hat new ordinance amendment.
Mr. Matrana asked, and then he would not need a variance?
Mr. Higbee said yes at that future point when it is fully adopted he would not need a variance. Currently because it is not all the way
through adoption he still does need the variance. However, the other
issue that is mentioned in the Staff Report is the height of one of
those two structures, which is 19.5 feet. Which would be 3.5 feet
taller than the residence and under the definitions of accessory units in our Zoning Ordinance it says that unit has to be subordinate in both height, bulk and size. It is smaller in size but it is not smaller in height but is taller than the residence so that gives rise to the other variance request. That’s all that I have.
Mr. Monnett said on the Staff Comments, Questions and Concerns it says “Staff noted a large rear yard with a power easement to the north of the proposed structures.”
Mr. Higbee said what I was wanting to point out there is if you go to the rear of this property, and I actually had the property owner show me the rear property line, there is a power easement there. You have a substantial open area and large space back behind the residence. This is an oversized lot that these structures would be sitting on.
Mr. Monnett asked, how many homes are around?
Mr. Higbee said that is a built out subdivision so if you look at
where Deborah Court and where that little cul-de-sac is, you can
actually count the lots around that cul-de-sac. One thing that I
didn’t think to check out that was mentioned to me by the person who
sent that letter was he was wondering whether or not it would be
visible from Angela Court or from Center Street with the taller
structure? I don’t know. I didn’t actually go to those locations to
determine whether you would be able to see that or not.
Mr. Matrana said you couldn’t see the higher building because it isn’t there.
Mr. Higbee said that is correct so it would have been hard to estimate anyway. I did stop at the end of the driveway on the
petitioner’s property and noticed that there was a row of trees going
down the side of the property that would probably substantially block
the view of this structure just from the end of the cul-de-sac right
there next to his property. But whether it would be seen from other
streets I don’t know. Of, of course, the neighboring house would be
able to see it on either side.
Mr. Matrana said if it wasn’t for the issue of the height of the
building, basically he could put it in that location and it would be
Mr. Higbee said yes. Once the ordinance is adopted if he were to apply for this after that and he had the height down three and a half
feet, it wouldn’t require any variances.
Mr. Thomas Meggenhofen said a year ago my wife and I decided to look around and see where we could build a house or move or whatever. After we got done looking we decided that the current property that we have on Deborah Court was the best place. We like the location and we like the access, whatever. So, we went through a list of things that we would like to have and need if we were to stay there. I have a lot of hobbies and whatever and I have a lot of junk things that I want to get stored away and an area to work. So, we looked at the property and said we would like to convert the current garage to a bedroom so, therefore, we need another garage. That is why we are asking for the detached garage. I would like to move all my stuff out of the garage and consolidate it out of the storage units that we have. Up until last April we had two units over at the Plainfield Self Storage and we would like to get them emptied, get the second one emptied. And I have learned about what I can do on my property and what I can’t do in the last six weeks from Mr. Higbee. When I moved into the house and my wife moved in, there was one tree on the lot. There were three when I moved in and now there are 60. I like a wooded lot. I like to hide things. Unfortunately because of the easements and giving an extra five foot of space to it because of the power easements I’m right up against their borders. So, I’m not in the easements. I gave them an extra five foot. As soon as the buildings are up, everything will be landscaped. There will be trees planted all the way around the building so that they can’t be seen. They seem to grow quite quickly because the trees that I have had that grow on the lot and started in the yard the power lines seem to kill things. So, the trees that come up naturally there are very adaptable. So, we will landscape it. We will hide it as much as possible from the street. That area that the building will be in will be out of the easement so I can put up fast growing maple trees and get it hidden as soon as possible. It is as far to the south as it can ago away from neighbors or anybody else. It can’t be seen from Quail Ridge unless the owners come to the back of their property. There is a tree line of 100-150 year old trees all along the back at the back of my property. The second houses on the other side of Quail Ridge can’t even see it. I think Mr. Higbee even mentioned when he went through there, he couldn’t even tell there were houses up behind my lot. We had to explain that there were houses. It is Quail Ridge North Drive. The people on Angela Court on the other side of the street cannot see my yard. My yard is at the bottom of a ravine or whatever but I’m well below Angela Court. My neighbor right behind me will not be able to see it and like I said I will try to put up trees as soon as possible and get them to the point where it does hide it. It is a very large lot. It is 1.28 acres and I can only use a little over half an acre of it to build what I want or need on it. I have to put it in the areas that we have asked permission to build the buildings. Otherwise, I would move them farther away and out of
Mr. Matrana asked, is there a reason why you made it taller than the main house?
Mr. Meggenhofen said expense. It is cheaper to go up than make it bigger but that is the reason. The storage units right now are 14
foot tall and I have some racks and shelves in there that allow me to
use that space. It could be 40’ x 40’ but the cost would double so 30’x 30’ with the extra height gives me that capability.
Mr. Matrana said 30’ x 30’ and 19 ½ feet high.
Mr. Meggenhofen said that is the peak of the roof. The actual usable space is 14 feet.
Mr. Carlucci asked, are you on city sewers?
Mr. Meggenhofen said no.
Mr. Carlucci said you have a pretty good sized lot. Would this impact your septic system?
Mr. Meggenhofen said no. The septic system is located under the easement. It comes out from the house and goes out. The easement
behind the house is fairly close.
Mr. Carlucci said so it is not right behind the house. It is just farther back.
Mr. Meggenhofen said yes. Are we talking about the building or the septic?
Mr. Carlucci said septic.
Mr. Meggenhofen said it comes nowhere near the septic and all of the power lines have been checked out through there. I have an easement on three sides of my lot. I have gas lines running down one side, a power easement across the back and the 150’ high voltage power line across the back of the area.
Mr. Matrana asked, is there anyone in the audience who would care to speak on these proposed new buildings?
Mr. Carl Benson at 7756 Quail Ridge North said I own property that borders on the south edge of Mr. Meggenhofen’s property. I came with no concern about the 24’ x 24’ structure. My concern was the 30’x 30’ with 14 foot walls in height and then a 19 ½ pitch. Since the gentleman has spoken I guess there will be an amendment to the
ordinance that the square footage of the 30’ x 30’ will not be the
issue. My main issue anyway was the height of the structure and my
understanding, if I am correct, the limit is 16 feet at pitch.
Mr. Higbee said it would be the height of his house, which I believe is 16 feet.
Mr. Benson said so that would be my main opposition at this time and I can understand and appreciate the fact that he has hobbies and junk in storage but I don’t see the need for the excessive height of the structure. I can and do sit on my deck at 7756 Quail Ridge and can see his residence with no problem. So, I would ask that for now and in the future that you adhere to and hold fast to the standards to soon be in place for both the aesthetic and monetary values of our neighborhood homes and properties and keeping the area residential in nature and not commercial or industrial in appearance.
Mr. Matrana said thank you very much Mr. Benson. That was very much concise and to the point.
Mr. Benson said thank you for allowing me to speak.
Mr. Mark Danforth at 7740 Quail Ridge North Drive said I’m his
neighbor to give you an idea of where I am. My property also borders
the south side of Mr. Meggenhofen’s property. I too have a question
about the size of the building. I understand that is not going to
matter in the future if it does get passed but a 30’ x 30’ pole
building behind my house seems excessive to me. This is a very
residential area. To my knowledge nobody has more than one out
building. I’m just guessing that. We are not allowed to have any in
Hawthorne Ridge but I don’t recall seeing anybody having more than one out building in that area and we are going to have two. One of them is going to be as big as a warehouse so I just kind of question whether or not we need anything that excessive and that tall. I also question what the exterior of the building is going to be finished in because I couldn’t see that anywhere in any of the plans. I might have missed it but I didn’t really see how he was going to finish those. Is it going to be in brick to match the house?
Mr. Higbee said I don’t think that information was provided.
Mr. Danforth asked, is that something that we ought to have before we give him that permit?
Mr. Higbee said the ordinances that are in place for that zoning
district don’t have specifications about building materials. As long
as he meets building codes he would be okay.
Mr. Danforth said he is my neighbor. I don’t know that I have ever spoken with him so I don’t have any hard issues with him other than we live in a very nice area and I want to keep it that way. And I don’t want it to look like the warehouse at the air terminal. That is
my main consideration is how are we going to finish it and the fact
that it is a very big building. I can stand on my deck at any time and see his back porch so I will see it. It will be glaring right in front of us. That is my only concern. I’m all for letting a person have what they want and have the hobbies that they want. I just don’t want it to in any way give us any more problems with our neighborhood than we have had with the airport and other problems that have caused us to lose value to our homes. Thank you for your time.
Mr. Matrana asked, is there anyone else who has any comments?
Being no one else coming forward we will close the public portion of
the meeting and open it up to the board for discussion.
Mr. Monnett asked, are there two requests, for the accessory building and the detached building?
Mr. Higbee said that is correct.
Mr. Monnett said especially for the landscaping the petitioner was talking about that’s really not mandated anyway is that correct?
Mr. Higbee said it is not mandated. If it is seen somehow beneficial or mitigating it could be opted as a condition.
Mr. Monnett made a motion to approve BZA-04-016 subject to the
Subject to substantial compliance with the plot plan file dated May 26, 2004 for the detached storage unit and the 24’ x 24’ detached garage with the understanding that the petitioner put in landscaping for said request.
Second by Mr. Blevins. Roll call vote called.
Mr. Monnett – yes
Mr. Blevins – yes
Mr. Cavanaugh – abstained
Mr. Haase – absent
Mr. Matrana – no
2-ayes, 1-opposed, 1-absentention. Motion failed.
Mr. Matrana asked, what happens to the petitioner now? Has his
petition been denied?
Mr. Carlucci said it’s not been approved or denied. You can make an alternate motion to either deny the petition and vote on that or an alternate motion to approve different than the first motion.
Mr. Matrana said if we let it stand, what happens?
Mr. Daniel said what you have now is you have a vote that constitutes no action on the petition because it takes three votes. So, it constitutes action on the petition one way or another. So, as Mr. Carlucci has well pointed out someone can make a motion to deny it or make another motion to approve it subject to different conditions.
Mr. Matrana said I decline to make another motion so then we should go to the next case.
Mr. Carlucci said you can officially ask for another motion and then if nothing is forthcoming, then there is no action taken. Does it then go to the next meeting?
Mr. Higbee said another alternative to throw in would be if you wanted to split the accessory space from the height. If that would
seem beneficial to you, you could split it and make two motions.
Mr. Daniel said you could split it to approve the buildings without the height.
Mr. Matrana said I have a problem with the height. I don’t think you should make an accessory building higher than the main building
especially when you have neighbors complaining. It is just too high.
It is too big and you can see it. In my opinion you can see it from
your neighbor’s property.
Mr. Carlucci said you can approve the 24’ x 24’ because that wasn’t a height issue. Then you can try to work on the other one. Mr. Matrana said if we didn’t approve that one, it would probably just go through anyway in a few months.
Mr. Carlucci said the height is still an issue on the 30’ x 30’ no matter what you do. The height will not change in the new ordinance. The only thing that is going to change is he could have both of those buildings as long as they were of the height of the primary building.
Mr. Matrana said as chairman I would like to ask if there are any more motions concerning the Meggenhofen buildings?
Mr. Monnett made a motion to approve BZA-04-016 with the following condition:
Subject to substantial compliance with the plot plan file dated May 26, 2004 for the 24’ x 24’ detached garage and the 30’ x 30’ extra storage building can be no higher than the existing structure, being the residence.
Mr. Carlucci said it might be, just to clear this up, he can’t build a 30’ x 30’ unless he can figure out some way to get it below the height of the existing house, the total height. He may not be able to
do that from a practical standpoint but he could build another 24’ x
24’ building as long as it is below this height.
Mrs. Meggenhofen said we can build the 30’ x 30’ as long as it is the same height of the house is that okay?
Mr. Matrana said that is the issue.
Mrs. Meggenhofen said the garage, the 24’ x 24’ is not an issue.
Mr. Matrana said that is correct as long as it is the same height. The issue was the height.
Mrs. Meggenhofen said thank you.
Mr. Matrana said the next matter before the board is BZA-04-018, Scott Kennedy.
Mr. Higbee said this is a variance request for a building addition to be added to a home that is under construction that would come within the 30 foot front setback. I want to point out for a couple of you who I don’t have e-mail addresses for that you probably didn’t get my correction that I sent out by e-mail but a few of you did get my correction because I misstated something in my Staff Report that
the builder pointed out to me after he read it. Basically what is
happening is at the entrance to the Willow Pointe Subdivision you have a lot. Then you have that entrance drive coming in along the side of the lot and then there is another drive coming along the other side of the lot and then Vestal Road is out here. So, there are actually three road frontages I think here. I misunderstood the petitioner’s plot plan because it showed a proposed drive, which appears to be on the south, if I have my north arrow on there correct. There is not actually going to be a drive there. The drive will be on the other side. In my Staff Report I may have led you to believe that there would be two drive accesses to the site and that is not correct. If I understood what I was told on the phone, there is only one and it would not be from the entry drive, which was probably cause for concern. You have people coming into a subdivision on a short neck entry drive and the driveway there that might have been a concern but the proposed drive on this plot plan is not actually going to be a drive. Now you see the little 10’ x 18’ bump out there on the side of the house. That is the building addition in question. It is on your plot plan and it looks like this. That needs a variance because it gets into the 30 foot setback. You will see the 35 foot BSL running right along where the house itself is and then this would be bumping out 10 feet from that. So, in other words it is 25’ from the lot line and the requirement for a front setback is 30 feet. So, it is really encroaching five feet in to that 30’ setback with that building addition. There will be a garage door on the side but there will not be a driveway. They will be coming in from the driveway on the other side to that garage door. There is also a garage door on the other side so there are garage doors on either side of the corner there but they would be accessed from the driveway on the side if you get my explanation. So, that took me awhile to figure out but I finally got it right I think. So, that is the variance request. To me I guess the issue is how close to that entry drive do you think the structure ought to be allowed to be? Should they come down to 25 feet?
Mr. Carlucci said just as soon as you go in right off Vestal Road it is the house to the right that is being built is that correct?
Mr. Higbee said yes.
Mr. Carlucci said I’m there every day too because of the recreation center but I noticed that there are a lot of plantings right around that corner is that correct? Is that there as part of the development?
Mr. Higbee said yes.
Mr. Carlucci said those may be the most landscaped lots right there on that corner.
Mr. Higbee said as you come in from Vestal Road yes. I might point something out for Mr. Kennedy’s benefit. He is the petitioner and in the audience right now. He may not be able to hear me but I wanted
to point out something that I didn’t before because it really hadn’t
occurred to me before I reviewed it today. This plot plan shows a 35
foot building setback line on it, which I assume is a platted building line. If you chose to grant it today, he would need to vacate that building line for that area where it is encroaching over the building line. That is a Plan Commission approval. Some of you were or are on the Plan Commission but we had one a couple of years ago like this on Center Street where somebody wanted to pass the platted building line along Center Street. This is the same circumstance because it is a platted BSL. If this BSL wasn’t in the plat, that wouldn’t be required because it is there and it has been recorded as part of the subdivision and he is building over it. So, that is not something for you tonight but that is something that I need to make Mr. Kennedy aware of that I hadn’t thought of until today.
Mr. Carlucci said not tonight but can we review that before we send him there because a variance is a variance and you allow them to
encroach in that building setback line, which is why he is here right?
Mr. Higbee said right.
Mr. Carlucci said so if they grant the variance, I don’t know if the Plan Commission can do anything but we can talk about that at another time from the legal standpoint. We have these discussions all of the time. This came up with the Andy Mohr sign and then it came back to the Plan Commission. The building setback line is different because it is on the plat but the BZA approved the variance and the height of
that sign. The Plan Commission through its development plan approval
could do nothing but say we either like it or don’t but they couldn’t
use it to stop that sign because the BZA had already spoken. Between
Mr. Daniel, Mr. Higbee and myself we ought to talk about that before we send him off to the Plan Commission just to see if there isn’t approval needed to do that.
Mr. Scott Kennedy at 729 Willow Pointe said the addition was needed because as Mr. Carlucci said there is a lot of landscaping after the house was in and platted. By looking at the plat through lines and numbers there looked like there was enough room to have a turn around
on the side. This was originally a side load garage that could have
either come to the entrance drive or could have had enough turn around pad, which is what I had proposed before we had gone to the addition of the additional garage, to bring a turn around pad out and bring it on to the inner street. But with the landscaping and stuff that is there that sends all of the traffic out too close to the sidewalk. One of the concerns we had after we measured off for a pad was we are basically coming up to the trees and the landscaping that are right by the public sidewalk. So, that was a concern. The only option that was left us was enough room to create a front load two car and then with the statue of the house a two car would be a failing sale point. So, I elected to try to put an additional bay on the side of 12 feet. We are initially three feet inside the building line now so the encroachment would actually be closer to eight and a half feet over that, which still leaves approximately 36 feet from the edge of the addition to the curb. So, there is still a substantial amount of area there in that area.
Mr. Higbee said there is a difference between how much you are
encroaching over the building line and how much of a setback variance
you are into. The setback is only required to be 30 feet. Do you see
what I’m saying?
Mr. Kennedy said the plan also shows that line coming over the utility and drainage easement. That is not true. It is still outside
the 25 foot utility and drainage easement. So, it is not an
encroachment into that area. The other thing that Mr. Higbee mentioned was these are both front loading garages to the west, which come out on the internal street. There is no side door or anything. I know it looks a little weird now with the big opening on the side of it because we left it with the ability to come out. Both of these doors go to the west, the internal street of the subdivision so there is no drive coming out to the south of that.
Mr. Higbee asked, there is no door on that side either?
Mr. Kennedy said there is no door. The door will be on the front with the other. It will be a traditional front load garage is what it will end up being.
Mr. Carlucci said those are always the toughest lots of a subdivision to sale anyway because it is right as you come in. Any corner lots you have to discount the lots just to sell them because people don’t want to live right there. You are saying that you have a two-car garage and another bay, a smaller bay.
Mr. Kennedy said yes.
Mr. Carlucci said just to be competitive with all of the other houses there.
Mr. Kennedy said right.
Mr. Carlucci said you said there was a 35 foot building line and a 30 foot setback.
Mr. Higbee said right.
Mr. Carlucci said so what he is coming out with actually encroaches both.
Mr. Higbee said yes. It goes over the building line and into the
required setback but the required setback is not required to be as far back as the building line is. It is 30 feet from that street so he is only encroaching around five feet and not eight feet into the setback. That is what is under the Zoning Ordinance. That is what the variance is for. The building line issue is the vacation issue that I mentioned earlier. That is a different number and a different document. That is associated with the plat and the Plan Commission in my opinion but we can talk about that later.
Mr. Matrana said at this time we need a motion or more
Mr. Cavanaugh said I don’t know if anybody else has had an opportunity to look at the property that we are talking about but I did earlier this evening. Frankly I can’t see any issue giving up the five feet. Mr. Carlucci is right. It has nice landscaping around it. I don’t see any detriment in allowing this so I would move to approve
BZA-04-018 subject to the following condition:
Subject to substantial compliance with the plot plan file dated May 25, 2004.
Second by Mr. Blevins. Roll call vote called.
Mr. Monnett – yes
Mr. Blevins – yes
Mr. Cavanaugh – yes
Mr. Haase – absent
Mr. Matrana – yes
4-ayes, 0-opposed, 1-absent. Motion carried.
OLD BUSINESS/NEW BUSINESS
Mr. Monnett made a motion to adjourn. Second by Mr. Cavanaugh.
Mr. Rick Matrana, President