The Plainfield Plan Commission met on Monday, March 5, 2007 at 7:00 p.m. In attendance were Mr. Matrana, Mr. McPhail, Mr. Brandgard, Mr. Gibbs, Mr. Kirchoff, Ms. Whicker and Mr. Satterfield.
ROLL CALL/DETERMINATION OF QUORUM
Mr. James administered the roll call.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Mr. Kirchoff made a motion to approve the February 5, 2007 Plainfield Plan Commission minutes as submitted. Second by Mr. Brandgard. Motion carried.
OATH OF TESTIMONY
Mr. Daniel administered the Oath of Testimony.
Ms. Whicker reviewed the Guidelines Governing the Conduct of Public Hearings. We have a continued petition that has been requested for April 5, 2007.
Mr. James said we have been working with the petitioners on this plan for several months. It has been to DRC twice and I believe they may have made a change in the architect but they have submitted revised plans and we are going to take those back to DRC in March and we expect them to be back before the Plan Commission in April 5th and they will have to do a re-notice on DP-06-031.
Mr. Brandgard made a motion to approve continuing DP-06-031, GPS Development to the April 5, 2007 meeting. Second by Mr. McPhail. Motion carried.
Mr. James said the next petition is PUD-06-001, Bay Communities, LLC. We had a productive joint work session last Thursday night and we felt we got a lot done. At least we got issues out on the table, the remaining issues, and the representatives are here tonight and they feel we can go forth and get these issues worked out and submit revised plans. Iím going to recommend that we schedule a special meeting for March 15th. It will be Thursday, March 15th at 6:00 p.m.
Our first case tonight is DP-07-004. The petitioner is Tim Dora. This request is for a 10,150 square foot expansion to the existing Holiday Inn Express at 6296 Cambridge Way. They are doing the expansion to add 60 suites, a 3,400 square foot meeting room and indoor pool. But to do this expansion as proposed some additional improvements are needed. They have to do a shared yard incentive and they have to amend the plat and when they amend the plat, they are going to create another lot that is currently vacant to the west and then the plans for that vacation, this newly created lot, is to build another hotel but they are going to share the yards. So, we have to use the shared yard incentive for that.
The Staybridge Suites has just been completed to the north and when that was being planned and proposed, we also redid the street network at the end of Cambridge Square and we punched a cul-de-sac through to Clarks Creek Road. So, when those plans were being developed, I think some right-of-way was exchanged needed to punch the cul-de-sac through to Clarks Creek Road. In exchange for that right-of-way I think the Town agreed to allow parking in the old Clarks Creek right-of-way, which isnít needed anymore. That was taken to the Town Council last week and they did agree to proceed with an encroachment agreement to allow the 22 parking spaces needed for this plan in the right-of-way. Also, they have to do perimeter landscaping along that east perimeter that would be in the right-of-way. They would need permission to do that as well.
Another approval needed is they have to vacate an existing utility easement that would be in line with the proposed expansion. So, we have to vacate that easement and then create another easement to the east for a water line and that would be done with the amended secondary plat.
They also need two variances. One variance would be so that they donít have to have a required loading space. If a retail center is over 10,000 square feet, one loading space is required. When the existing Holiday Express was developed, a loading space was not required so they donít have one on site now. They use the cul-de-sac and to get all of the parking they need for the expansion they just donít have enough room to add a loading space. They would need a variance to not have a loading space and then also Iím going to say a variance for the side yard setback. If that gets vacated back to the Holiday Inn, then the setback would be the required 10 feet so we went ahead and recommended that they go ahead and get that variance as well.
So, this request went to the DRC back in February and DRC recommended approval with some stipulations. Here is the site. Here is the existing Holiday Inn. Here is the cul-de-sac, which now has a connection through here and the improved Clarks Creek Road. Here is the old right-of-way, which isnít needed anymore. Some day it could be vacated but right now it is not going to be vacated. So, they are going to proceed with the encroachment agreement. Surrounding zoning is General Commercial and over here on the other side of the old Clarks Creek Roadway we have a wooded thicket that is zoned Agriculture. This is where they are going to create the new lot and where they are planning another hotel just to the north where the Staybridge Suites is soon to open and then you have the Thomas Chaetae Winery that is on this site over here.
This is a photograph of the existing Holiday Inn and this is what they are proposing with the expansion. This is the west elevation and the east elevation and then the north and south I believe. So, they are going to upgrade the existing facade of the existing hotel. I think they are going to do a lot of work to it and make it more attractive. This is the building material percentage that complies with the building material percentage. If it is 50% EIFS, then the secondary material has to be at least 20% brick and all elevations comply.
I did have a few issues when we went to DRC but the plans have been revised since DRC and all plans comply with Gateway Corridor standards and the Town Council has agreed to pursue the encroachment in the right-of-way to allow the 22 parking spaces. There was a concern at DRC with the timing of the planned hotel to the west. When that would be developed, they recommended doing some perimeter landscaping on that west side until such time that west side does develop. So, they have agreed to do a temporary landscape easement with a Level 2 perimeter landscaping on the west side and then also since the existing building was done before our current gateway standards there wasnít a lot of landscaping and they recommended that they add some landscaping to the existing building. So, they have agreed to do that. They have added it to the landscaping plan and it was not required by ordinance but they have gone above and beyond what is required and they have agreed to do that Level 1 foundation landscaping to the east foundation of the existing building. But then they still need the two variances from the BZA so if this request gets approved, it will be subject to the two variances from the BZA. Hopefully, I have given you a quick summary of what they have proposed to do with this plan and I believe there are some representatives here who would be glad to answer any questions that you might have.
Mr. Jay Gibson said Iím a civil engineer with CDG Consulting, Inc. representing Tim Dora and Dora Brothers, Inc. We are the civil site engineers for the project. I believe Mr. James hit on all of the key issues of the project and I will address any questions that you may have.
Mr. Brandgard said I want to make sure I understand the renderings you have given us. If I look at this correctly, the additional is going to be a four-story where we currently have three.
Mr. Donald Cassel said Iím the architect. The addition will be I think about five-story so we are adding an additional story.
Mr. Brandgard said I certainly like the new look.
Ms. Whicker asked, is there anyone in the audience who would care to speak on this matter? Being no one coming forward I will close the public portion of this hearing and open it up for discussion or a possible motion.
Mr. McPhail said I will just make a quick comment. This property owner has been real good to work with. I think Staff was able to see, not the details of the building plan, but the expansion plans a couple of years ago when they were planning the Staybridge Suites and Staff met with the owner and worked out the right-of-way to punch that road through knowing there would be a parking issue when he go ready to do this expansion. So, that has been all worked out and hopefully BZA will understand that when it gets there and everything goes through but they have really been cooperative with the Town to get that part of our traffic flow worked out there. That is one of the reasons that the parking issue came up and it wasnít a surprise to Staff at all. I think they have a good plan here and hopefully they will get through BZA without too much problem to get that taken care of.
Mr. Gibbs made a motion that the Plan Commission approve DP-07-004 as filed by Tim Dora requesting Architecture and Site Design Review approval for a 10,150 square foot expansion to add 60 suites, a 3,400 square feet meeting room and an indoor swimming pool to the Holiday Inn Express at 6296 Cambridge Way located within 600í of a Gateway Corridor finding that:
1. The Development Plan complies with all applicable Development Standards of the district in which the site is located.
2. The Development Plan complies with all applicable provisions of the Subdivision Control Ordinance for which a waiver has not been granted.
3. The Development Plan complies with all applicable provisions for Architectural and Site Design Review for which a waiver has not been granted.
4. The proposed development is appropriate to the site and its surroundings.
5. The proposed development is consistent with the intent and purpose of the Plainfield Zoning Ordinance.
And that such approval be subject to the following conditions:
1. Substantial compliance with the site plan, landscape plan, photometric plan, trash enclosure plan and light fixtures submitted file dated February 26, 2007 and building elevations file dated February 27, 2007.
2. Final approval of the encroachment agreement by the Town Council to allow parking and landscaping within the Clarks Creek Road right-of-way.
3. Variances are granted by the BZA to not require a loading space on site and to reduce the side yard setback for the east perimeter from 10í to 0.5í.
4. The existing utility easement is vacated by the Town Council.
Second by Mr. Brandgard. Roll call vote called.
Mr. Satterfield Ė yes
Mr. Matrana Ė yes
Mr. McPhail Ė yes
Ms. Whicker Ė yes
Mr. Brandgard Ė yes
Mr. Gibbs Ė yes
Mr. Kirchoff Ė yes
7-ayes, 0-opposed, 0-absent. Motion carried.
Ms. Whicker said our next petition is DP-07-005.
Mr. James said this is a request by Premier Properties USA to amend the sign standards for the Metropolis PUD. The proposed amendments are to:
* Allow signs in the medians to identify landscaping along Perry Road and Metropolis Parkway.
* Allow raceway supports on a case by case basis when no other type of support is applicable.
* Allow box signs on a case by case basis for corporate logs.
* Allow wall banners to promote special events within the Metropolis.
* Allow tag lines on a case by case basis not to exceed 40% of the total sign surface area with individual letters.
* Allow administrative review of signs without a public hearing at the Plan Commission for signs internal to the Metropolis.
So, this is the Metropolis PUD. This is the lifestyle center basically right in here but the Metropolis PUD covers all of this in the purple. It is just on the west side of Perry Road down to about where it cuts across over to the old Galyanís headquarters.
So, this is the median sign they are proposing. They want to do this to identify tenants that have paid for the cost of maintaining landscaping within the medians. I will show you these locations later. Wall banners would have large temporary banners and DRC has recommended that we add some language to put a time limit on it so we added 14 days prior to the event and that the banners must be removed within 48 hours after the event. The banners are not to exceed 30% of the facade of the elevation where it is placed. For these median signs they have some little red dots here. This is the PUD boundary and this is where it cuts across over to the old Galyanís headquarters. So, we can only approve it for locations within their PUD so it would be this one right here and then this is Perry and the Metropolis Parkway intersection. These are within their PUD so this would be allowed in three locations along the Metropolis Parkway. Again, that is what they are proposing for the medians. They are about six square feet, three by two. The other amendments are a box sign for corporation logos. These have been approved in the past with Starbucks, etc. These would only be for corporate logos and for a box type sign on a case by case basis. Then for the raceway mount this is a type of raceway right here. Really what it does is just provide structural support when there is no other way really to put individual letters across the facade like that. Again, that would be on a case by case basis.
Then DRC recommended approval with the following stipulations:
* We decided that more study was needed for these median signs to determine size and type and it should be limited to businesses paying for maintenance of medians. Maybe this is something that we can do on a Town wide basis to help beautify these medians and to pay for the cost of maintaining these medians. But we would need to do this with some standards and place a limit on how many could be placed and locations, etc.
* They agreed to allow the raceways and box signs and tag lines on a case by case basis only for stores internal to the Metropolis. These stores cannot be seen from the Gateway Corridor. That would be for Perry Road and the Metropolis or Main Street.
* Then the banners can be placed 14 days prior to the event but then they must be removed within 48 hours after the event and they canít exceed 30% of the facade where they are hanging.
* Also they agreed to allow administrative approval without a public hearing but Staff still has the option to take these before the Design Review Committee to get their comments and recommendations and also bring it to the Plan Commission. It would eliminate the public hearing process to help expedite things and it also gives them a little flexibility when they are dealing with tenants.
So, language has been revised to address DRCís comments and is this revised language acceptable to the Plan Commission? Box, raceway and logo signs have been approved in the past by the Plan Commission. And then median signs if you donít like this idea and you think we are getting a little carried away on signage, I have included an exclusion in the motion so we can take that out of the motion. I told Steve Medders with Premier that I would leave it in the report to get it on the table and maybe start a discussion about it and get some thoughts about it. So, with that I will turn it over to Mr. Medders if you have some questions for him.
Mr. Steve Medders with Premier Properties at 5252 E. 82nd St., Indianapolis, IN 46250 said I appreciate letting me answer any questions you may have on this. It looks like the one item that has not been resolved or that we are still going to look at in the future is the median signage. I have something to pass out here. We are not set on that particular sign that said Metropolis. If you have any questions on that, we really would like to work with Staff and DRC and the Plan Commission on offsetting everyoneís costs, not only ours but the Townís, for the future medians that are going to be landscaped on Ronald Reagan and Airtech and Metropolis Parkway extending eastward. Again, we would like to work with the DRC to come up with something that would work for everyone.
Mr. Brandgard said the ďadopt the medianĒ or the ďlandscapingĒ having a sign for those who are volunteering to take care of a certain area of road or that is pretty common but the signs arenít near as large as what you are proposing although I like the design of your sign but it is a little bit overkill I think.
Mr. Medders said we spoke with the Design Review Committee and it was indicated that the signs need to be smaller, however, the signs adjacent to the Metropolis Shopping Center, because of the interesting design of the center itself, those signs might be a little bit different. However, we did say whatever size the Town decides upon we donít need the Metropolis word on the signage as long as our tenants would be on there and again this allows actual groups to put their name on the sign and go out and do the landscaping or even hire a landscaper if the group prefers. It has safety guidelines, which are important. It also has the type of plantings that would be most likely to survive a median planting and that is something I think we would be glad to work with the Town to incorporate.
Mr. Brandgard said I think the other thing is this is usually for volunteer groups to take care of an area and it can be that they are either out there doing it themselves or they pay for somebody to do it. But what you have presented this time looks more like small billboard advertising rather than Iím volunteering to do this I think. I think the fact we are considering moving this over to the wayfinding area is good. This is something that is workable for the whole Town because there are several organizations already out doing this type of thing along the roads and they are not recognized and we ought to have some way to recognize them.
Mr. Medders said Staffís comments and DRCís comments indicated to make the signs smaller. They have been saying that perhaps the signs could be complimentary to the Metropolis.
Ms. Whicker asked, would it just be the tenant that would be able to and not any volunteer group or organization?
Mr. Medders said not necessarily but unfortunately the landscaping that we have incorporated is over $150,000.00. So, we could hire a professional landscaper to take care of it, however, if, for example, Old Navy says we want to have our name on there and here is the money to help offset those costs for the professional landscaper to maintain that median, they would have the right to have their name on there for a certain time period. So, if the Boy Scouts of America wants to come and do it, in our particular case I donít know if that would work or not. But if they wanted to, for example, adopt another median and they wanted their name on that particular median, then they could do that without having to contribute money that they could do themselves.
Mr. Kirchoff said when I read your proposal, it appears it is a way to get advertising outside of the mall. (Inaudible).
Mr. Medders said think about your future landscaping maintenance costs for your medians. We were trying to beautify Plainfield like they did in Indy to help the site.
Mr. Kirchoff said you knew what your costs were coming in and you donít need to try to slip it in the system.
Mr. Medders said I hope you donít think we are trying to go around and circumvent that. We are just trying to defray some of those costs.
Mr. Satterfield said if I understand correctly, the people that want to put these signs up, will pay you the fee and there will be a professional doing the landscaping; it will not be volunteers doing it.
Mr. Medders said in our particular case due to the extensive landscaping we would maintain it by professional landscapers. The advertising of Old Navy, for example, thatís just an arbitrary name, would help pay the landscaper to take care of it. It would not be the Old Navy employees taking care of that.
Mr. Satterfield asked, would that be on an, i.e., one year contract?
Mr. Medders said that is something that we need to work with the Town on I believe as we go forward. I would assume that it would be six months.
Mr. Brandgard said moving to the other signs internal to the Metropolis I think you had come in awhile back and we had told you to go back and come back with a plan for signage so we donít have to look at everything all of the time. I think you have done a pretty good job with that.
Mr. Medders said we worked diligently with Staff and the DRC to make sure everyone is happy. We donít want taglines, we donít want raceways. It is if it just cannot be accommodated architecturally on that particular construction method then we would come in as a new business on the Plan Commission and ask for approvals.
Ms. Whicker asked, on the height of the median signs are those inches?
Mr. Medders said that is correct; 40 inches I believe.
Mr. McPhail said I would certainly like to see us take this median sign and put it in the wayfinding sign program. I think there is some common ground that we can come to where any place in Town if we have somebody that wants to maintain it, that they can be recognized. Iím like Mr. Kirchoff and I donít want a billboard sign out there but I think a nice attractive small sign that says this median is maintained by Old Navy or the Boy Scouts of America or whoever and to be uniformed throughout the Town in terms of size and maybe the style of the Metropolis would be a little bit different to blend in but certainly not size wise. I think it needs to be part of the wayfinding sign so we can cover it for the whole Town and take it out of this PUD. The PUD was created for development and not the roadways really so I think that is a crossover and I really can see keeping them separated but I do think there is common ground that we can work out with the wayfinding sign program to take care of the medians.
Ms. Whicker said as you researched the ďadopt the medianĒ program in Marion County, did you have the measurements?
Mr. Medders said they did not on their website. They did have a link to click on to adopt a median. It is not very difficult. They just lead you through the steps and you volunteer to take care of a median. I would be glad to research that further and come up with those dimensions. That is a rather small sign and a bit tacky in my opinion. I think it could be made to look nicer than that.
Ms. Whicker asked, are there any comments on the wall banners? They would be advertisement for what events?
Mr. Medders said they would be advertisement for upcoming events, Easter Bunny, Thanksgiving events, whatever the mall decides to schedule as a special event leading up to a shopping event such as Motherís Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, etc. It would go up two weeks prior to that event and come down within 48 hours after the event and it will not exceed 30% of facade of the elevation where it is placed.
Ms. Whicker asked, would it be toward the Metropolis information rather that specific to the tenants?
Mr. Medders said that would be scheduled events for the Metropolis; no tenants.
Mr. James asked, would this be only internal to the Metropolis or would they be seen elsewhere?
Mr. Medders said they are planning the banners going on the back side of the two level towards the Wal-Mart and also towards the Metropolis Parkway.
Ms. Whicker asked, is there anyone in the audience who would care to speak on this matter? Being no one coming forward the public portion of this hearing and I would entertain discussion from the board or a possible motion.
Mr. Brandgard made a motion to approve DP-07-005 as filed by Steve Medders for Premier Properties USA, Inc. requesting final detailed plan approval to amend the Metropolis Sign Standards finding that:
1. The Final Detailed Plan satisfies the Development requirements and development standards as specified in the PUD District ordinance establishing each district.
2. The Final Detailed Plan accomplishes the intent set forth in Article VI of the Plainfield Zoning Ordinance.
3. The Final Detailed Plan provides for the protection or provision of the site features and amenities outlined in Article 6,C.,2. of the Plainfield Zoning Ordinance.
And that such approval be subject to the following conditions:
1. Substantial compliance with the Metropolis Sign Package Submittal file dated February 23, 2007 subject to the following exception:
a. Median signs shall not be approved with this request.
Second by Mr. McPhail. Roll call vote called.
Mr. Satterfield Ė yes
Mr. Matrana Ė yes
Mr. McPhail Ė yes
Ms. Whicker Ė yes
Mr. Brandgard Ė yes
Mr. Gibbs Ė yes
Mr. Kirchoff Ė yes
7-ayes, 0-opposed, 0-absent. Motion carried.
Ms. Whicker said next on our agenda is TA-07-001, Zoning Ordinance Amendment.
Mr. James said we looked at this back in January and proposed amendments to the Plainfield Zoning Ordinance to amend some sign standards. There are basically six amendments.
* The first amendment would remove the sign hierarchy for freestanding identification signs along Gateway Corridors for single-use sites. By doing that the only type of freestanding sign allowed for new construction for a single-use site would be a ground sign. They would be limited to six feet in height.
* The other amendment removes pylon signs as a permitted freestanding sign in the General Commercial District for a single-use sign.
* The amendment removes the height standard for a pylon sign.
* Provides standards for sidewalk signs within the Town Center District. This would be a new standard. This past fall we had some businesses in the Town Center District that had been putting out sidewalk signs and we donít have standards for those. Knowing they need all of the help they can get to promote their businesses we thought it would be a good idea to look into creating some sign standards for sidewalk signs only in the Town Center District. We have done that and with this amendment we would include these sidewalk sign standards into the Plainfield Zoning Ordinance.
* Another thing we thought we needed to take care of was to put in an amendment and some language to deal with legally established nonconforming signs and a way to get rid of these signs. That is the intent of the legally established nonconforming article of the Zoning Ordinance is to some day get rid of these. But we really didnít have the mechanism other than if Mother Nature took care of it or if they were destroyed in some other fashion. So, what this does is it puts an expiration date on the sign. If the sign is not used within six months, it has to be removed. It cannot be used again by another business to occupy that site.
* The last amendment adds some language to the definition of an identification sign. This would prevent the use of price or cost in a sign except for a gasoline or filling station where they would advertise the price of gas.
So, those are the amendments before you tonight. With that I would be glad to answer any questions that you might have.
Mr. Kirchoff said (inaudible).
Mr. James said the way that it is now if a business is empty for a year or two years, they can still use that sign.
Mr. Kirchoff said I understand that but question is as I read it if it is not used for six months, we expect the owner to come and tear the sign down.
Mr. James said it has to come down.
Ms. Whicker said so the cost would go to the owner and not the new tenant.
Mr. Kirchoff said (inaudible).
Mr. Daniel said I donít think it is so much the issue of the cost. I think the old Galyan sign is the most recent example where there is nobody in there and that sign is a nonconforming sign.
Mr. Kirchoff said I thought our issue was when the furniture store came in, they used a nonconforming sign. I thought our issue was we are going to let the new person use it and at that time it would come down. (Inaudible).
Mr. Daniel said I doubt if you could get the furniture store to take it down. It is ultimately going to come back to the owner of the property.
Ms. Whicker said so it would eliminate the reuse of a nonconforming sign exceeding six months of vacancy.
Mr. James said that is correct.
Mr. McPhail said if a business comes in within three months of somebody leaving, they could do it. If it sits there vacant for six months, it has to go. I think it is a great idea because we are not going to get rid of nonconforming signs.
Mr. Brandgard said we have that same issue with that tall liquor sign.
Ms. Whicker asked, is there anyone in the audience who would care to speak on this matter? Being no one coming forward I will close the public portion of this hearing and entertain a motion.
Mr. McPhail made a motion to approve TA-07-001: Zoning Ordinance amendment for sign standards. Second by Mr. Gibbs. Motion carried.
OLD BUSINESS/NEW BUSINESS
Wayfinding Sign Program Update
Mr. James said the first page is a schedule. We have been able to stay on schedule with our consultant and we have been getting a lot done in the last couple of months. In fact, we hope to bring a proposal to the DRC next week to have DRC take a look at what we have put together so far. Hopefully, we will have something to bring back to you next month to look at maybe approve and get this wayfinding program implemented and have it ready to go when the construction is done for SR267 and Ronald Reagan Parkway.
The second page is a map. It has the proposed locations, the red dots, and we created some districts; the Interchange District, the Industrial District, which this isnít the latest map. This district has expanded. We have the Town Center District and we have also created a Parks District and then the U.S. 40 Commercial District and All Points Midwest we feel like that should have its own identity separate from Airtech and Airwest. So, we have some locations picked out.
The next page shows the points of interest for each sign. We have created a hierarchy of signs. At the top of the hierarchy would be our points of interest sign where we show the main points of interest and we prioritized these points of interest. For example, Splash Island would be high on the priority list; industrial parks and the Metropolis and the Plainfield High School would be high on the priority list. The second type of sign would be your district sign where you would show directions to sites within that district. An example of this would be like Splash Island, Plainfield Parks but we would break down the park and show directions to each park. This is the sign hierarchy. The main sign, which you would see first showing points of interest back here is an example of what it would look like with four inch letters on a black background with an arrow. I think it really stands out. It will give you an idea of the size of that sign. Then you would have your district sign, your secondary sign, which would show locations within that district. These are gateway signs. This would be the gateway into the Town of Plainfield, which could be right here, U.S. 40 our north gateway and then one on our west gateway and one down here or maybe even one along the interstate here. We have looked at potential locations along the interstate too to let motorists and travelers know when they have arrived in Plainfield.
The last sign would be your destination marker. One would be placed in the Town Center to let travelers and motorists know that they have reached that destination. Then we talked about taking it down as far as the street level maybe with different types of street signs within that district but I think we sort of moved away with that. And then we have another box here for the median signs. I have asked Schmidt and Associates to take a look at that and see what they can come up with for the median signs. So, we are going to go through with that and see what they come up with. These are other examples of the primary sign and the points of interest sign. We narrowed that down to five points of interest per sign with points and lettering. Again, that is what it would be like back in the back. We did have the mileage but we took that out. That would allow us to have our larger letters.
I just wanted to update you on the progress that has been made with this program and we are moving right ahead and we hope to have a program ready to bring back to you to review next month.
Ms. Whicker asked, what is the difference between the white and black arrows verses the red and white or the grey and black?
Mr. James said they are just different alternatives just to see what they would look like. We thought the red background stood out better.
Ms. Whicker asked, in the parks would they be Plainfield Parks or would they be the specific individual parks?
Mr. James said once you are in the Parks District they would be the specific individual park. That would be with the secondary district sign. With the primary sign we would just point it to that district; that is what that is for. If you would like to look this over and have any comments or suggestions for me, feel free to let me know I would be glad to pass them onto Schmidt.
Ms. Whicker asked, was there a specific Parks District that was outlined on the map?
Mr. James said yes. It was mainly the district south of Main Street. Franklin could be identified within the Town Center maybe since it is sort of separate off from the other parks.
Mr. Daniel asked, has there been any work done with the Township in trying to work these signs in with Hummel Park, etc.?
Mr. James said I donít believe there has been any contact with them. I think the thought is that any sign that is currently there would remain and then we would try not to duplicate signs.
Mr. Kirchoff said we are working on one of our projects on Reeves Road and we are reconfiguring the main entrance into Hummel Park so it could be very timely.
Mr. James said with that I will use that as segway into the temporary wayfinding sign program.
This was approved by the Town Council last year. Premier has been the force behind this and I think they were probably one of the forces behind the wayfinding program as well. They wanted to get some signs in as soon as they could to help with, not only the Metropolis, but also to assist in the wayfinding program for some Town points of interest or other entities. They have proposed about 10 locations. I rode around with Mr. Medders last week and we looked at these locations; where would be the appropriate place for them; put them at the intersection. This is a breakdown of where they would go at the intersection but we still need to do a little more work. We have to make sure we donít interfere with any utilities or other items that might be at that location. If you remember for those that were on the Town Council when a resolution was done and it was brought to you, they had a tall metal framed type sign. It was nothing like what you just saw that we are considering for wayfinding signs. They werenít very temporary either. They wanted to put them in a concrete pier so we thought that caused more conflicts at these locations with utilities and the fact that they would be less temporary. Iíve been working with Mr. Medders and I think I finally talked him into just doing something wooden or painted. I showed them what we came up with as a proposal for the permanent wayfinding signs and they would like to do something that would really resemble permanent signs and then these would be just wooden posts. They would be put in the ground and they would be more temporary. This would also make it a much easier transition into our permanent signs. They would like to get these in the ground just as soon as possible knowing that they are temporary and they could only be in place for four or five months until we get the program finalized and we can get them in coordinated with the opening of the roads, when the new road projects are completed. So, I wanted to bring that to you tonight and show it to you and then Mr. Medders could answer any questions that you might have. Mr. Medders also needs to know that we still have to get an approval by INDOT and that may not happen in time to get them in the right-of-way for INDOT roads. So, for the time being we may be able to do it only for the Plainfield streets and the Plainfield right-of-way.
Mr. Brandgard said as a quick comment if you have to get INDOT approval to put a temporary sign up and then you are going to come back in a couple of months to go after a permanent sign approval, I donít think INDOT will take that scenario too well. Really the final master plan is supposed to be available six weeks from now. So, I think as close as we are Iím not sure we need to go the temporary route. By the time you get them up you are going to be ready for the permanent signs.
Mr. Medders said we explored that option and Chris White was very adamant about getting these in place even if it takes you six weeks to start your program. It will take two weeks after approval by the time Plainfield has these installed. We have already had them priced by Sign Craft. We want to utilize, not only Metropolis, but the other points of interest within the Town and he is willing to put up that cost to get those signs in there. He feels it is very important to get that visibility from the roadways to, not only the Metropolis, but the other points of interest.
Mr. Kirchoff asked, can you go back to the locations? (Inaudible).
Mr. Medders said Highway 40?
Mr. Kirchoff said that is INDOT.
Mr. Medders asked, what other ones are INDOT?
Mr. James said probably SR267.
Mr. Medders said the Metropolis Parkway, for example, there is some right-of-way that Mr. Belcher has talked about. So, that might be the Town of Plainfield I believe. These locations were indicated that we would like to have the signs and as Mr. James said we drove around and tried to pick the best corner of that particular intersection to place a sign.
Mr. James said we are having a meeting with INDOT March 19th and we want to take that opportunity to introduce the program to INDOT and get some initial feedback at that time.
Mr. Medders asked, is Six Points Road a State Road?
Mr. Brandgard said no.
Mr. McGillem said like you said I think it is going to be difficult to get approval from INDOT for a temporary sign. (Inaudible).
Mr. Medders said (inaudible).
Mr. McGillem said (inaudible).
Mr. Kirchoff said I wouldnít want to do anything that would offensively impact our perimeter wayfinding signs.
Mr. McPhail said I wouldnít have any problem with moving forward on our right-of-way but we donít want to delay our permanent program with INDOT and we all know how difficult they are to work with sometimes.
Mr. Kirchoff said (inaudible).
Mr. McPhail said I think a meeting with INDOT you will get a real quick feel wonít you?
Mr. Medders said may I suggest that Mr. McGillem, myself and Mr. James work out what Plainfield right-of-ways are available and putting something in those locations so we donít jeopardize anything with INDOT for the permanent signs.
Mr. Kirchoff asked (inaudible).
Mr. Medders said since we are paying for them the Metropolis would be on top and you can decide the sequencing underneath it as you see fit.
Mr. McGillem said (inaudible). The Plan Commission can make a recommendation but I think the Council will have the control over anything in the right-of-way. (Inaudible).
Mr. Daniel said I agree Mr. McGillem.
Mr. James said we did pass the resolution by the Town Council to allow the temporary wayfinding last year.
Mr. McGillem said but I think you need to bring them back (inaudible).
Mr. James said we would do that. We would bring back the locations and the final design of the signs for Town Council approval.
Mr. Kirchoff said (inaudible).
Ms. Whicker asked, would the signs be made and identical? Would they be consistent to the plan that is shown?
Mr. Medders said the signs would be the same. The permanent sign that Mr. James is proposing has actually a little roof on the arch above and there is a gap between the red and the black of the sign but the dimensions are exactly the same. We are painting the posts grey with usually a four by four number so that it will resemble as close as possible the permanent sign.
Mr. Chuck Livengood at 1280 Renee, Plainfield said I think any program that you consider such as putting up signs especially in the outdoors you should take into account a whole maintenance program. I havenít heard anything about that but I would hate to see them just go up and not be maintained at all.
Mr. McGillem said signs that are owned by the Town and maintained by the Town will be the Townís responsibility. These signs here if they are put up, (inaudible). The permanent signs would be maintained and replaced (inaudible).
Mr. McPhail said one of the reasons that the posts are grey is because they are easier to maintain. I certainly think we should recommend to the Town Council that they be able to move forward with these temporary signs working with Staff and installing them in locations that are approved by Staff and not jeopardize the long-term relationship with INDOT. I will make that a motion. Second by Mr. Brandgard. Motion carried.
Mr. James said the next is a business that is proposing putting in an ATM machine at the Murphy Oil site. This is an example of the machines that they put in at Avon. This is exactly what they would put in. They submitted an ILP and I had some concerns about it. One, what it would like and another issue is this an accessory use? It would be an accessory use for a bank but not a gas station but as an accessory use I can approve it with an ILP. The ordinance doesnít require that it is brought to the Plan Commission for a public hearing. I wanted to show it to you tonight and get some comments. This is the site plan. They proposed it back off of U.S. 40. It would be in the rear of the Murphy Oil site but at this location we have some issues. It is in the side yard setback, which you need a variance to put it there and also it is against the flow of traffic. Vehicles would have to maneuver over here and they would be stacking over here and vehicles would be turning in and I didnít like that conflict. I recommended that they put it in this corner over here. If they put it over here, they wouldnít need any variances. They would also be in the flow of traffic and you would have plenty of room for stacking for vehicles right here. They can use the machine and exit right here with the flow of traffic. But the problem with this location is it is right out in front, sticking right out in front where it can be seen. It might be the first thing that you see off of U.S. 40. Here is a view looking at Wal-Mart. It would be about right in here if it was to be placed out front. These are some photos of other ATM machines we are having around Plainfield but these arenít right off U.S. 40 or along Gateway Corridors.
Mr. Brandgard said the one that you showed there in front of J.C. Penneyís we allowed that to go in and today when we are looking at it, I donít think I would have voted to allow that. Sitting out there standing alone doesnít make a bit of sense at all and I think the same thing with this one at the gas station. If it was up against the building and didnít jump out at you so bad, maybe I would consider it but it certainly isnít a use for that venue.
Mr. McPhail asked, isnít this the ATM for National City Bank?
Mr. Brandgard said yes.
Mr. McPhail said because they couldnít get it on the site.
Mr. Kirchoff said it is First National out there by itself.
Mr. McPhail said I donít see an ATM relating to the use of a gas station. I just donít see those two issues related. There are a half dozen of banks within a block of that place or two blocks.
Mr. Brandgard said there is one right next to it.
Mr. McPhail said there are ATM machines in Wal-Mart. I really think it is a use that doesnít fit there and I think we would be opening Pandoraís Box if we allow that there. How many banks are there within a couple of blocks? There are at least four that I can think of plus there is one inside Wal-Mart. There is a bank inside Wal-Mart and an ATM machine inside Wal-Mart. Iím totally opposed to the thing. I donít see how it relates to the operation of the gas station.
Mr. James said thank you for your comments.
The last item tonight is the zoning compliance. We have two invitees tonight. The first is QT Properties LLC on 604 Main Street. It involves the use of banners as permanent signs. Here is a photograph of the banners that they are using. We had several of these locations around Town and I think one issue is are they legally nonconforming signs? But it is on a Gateway Corridor. On a Gateway Corridor you are not supposed to have roof signs and also, roof signs are not allowed by the ordinance anymore, they are supposed to be individual letters. What they are doing is as tenants change, changing out these banners. I wanted to get your comments about these signs.
Mr. McPhail said they certainly donít meet the sign ordinance.
Ms. Whicker said and they change quickly on the businesses.
Mr. Kirchoff asked, what other options are there?
Mr. James said you do individual letters. They can be individual plastic letters. It could be a matter of interpretation on a Gateway Corridor. The Gateway Corridor calls for individual letters. The Town Center can paint them. We are keeping the sign hierarchy for wall signs because that is a situation where you have existing integrated centers with nonconforming signs. That way they would be consistent with the sign type of that integrated center.
Mr. McPhail said we certainly wouldnít allow them anyplace else so why should we allow them there.
Mr. David Brown said my wife and I are the owners of QT Properties. I apologize for not getting here sooner. Iíve had some health issues. In respect to the signs I didnít totally understand. All I got was that they were nonconforming but not what was conforming. One thing I would propose is Iím under somewhat of a confidentiality agreement but I would propose to the group here this evening that within six months the entire property will probably be abandoned. Both I and the adjoining property owner of the old antique home have received an offer from several developers to put in another retail use. So, the likelihood of that continuing to operate as the present facility is limited. I am opened to recommendations but I donít see the purpose of us spending money for a street sign similar to the one near Bassett where the new development went in right there. Iím assuming that is something along the lines of what would like to be seen. If it was our desire to continue to operate, I would certainly see the necessity for doing so but we are under contract to sell the property but Iím not at liberty to say who it is.
Mr. McPhail asked, do you think you would have a resolution by the first of July?
Mr. Brown said most definitely.
Mr. McPhail said based on that I think we ought to give him an extension to the first of July with whatever they are using. If the property hasnít been sold or changed by that time, then we would expect you to meet the standards.
Mr. Brown said the terms of the contract is 120 days with the developer.
Mr. McPhail said I wouldnít want you to spend money if you are going to do that. I make that in form of a motion to give them to the first of July to change the use of the property. If not, then we would expect them to meet all current sign standards. Second by Mr. Brandgard. Motion carried.
Mr. James said our second item tonight is for the property on 140 S. Mill Street. There are unlicensed vehicles, junk and trash on the property. I would like to see some action to get this cleaned up.
Mr. Derald Callahan at 140 S. Mill St., Plainfield said the two vehicles are recreational vehicles and they are back in the garage. We have the trailers back behind an enclosed fence so it is out of sight. The red vehicle out front has a blown motor and it is now in the garage at this point and time being repaired. All the vehicles on the premises are plated and registered. The two-wheel dolly we moved into the yard so that I can get the other equipment in. It is now back in the drive out of the way. I was trying to get lawnmowers done this week. My mother took ill and she is still in the hospital today. They are hoping to be able to release her some time this week to go back home. So, Iíve been in and out of the hospital as well as doing other things but like I said these are recreational vehicles. One of them belongs to a friend of mine. He is in the process of moving today but I do have title to the other one; I just donít have it plated because we donít drive it on the street. It is not applicable to be on the street I guess I could say. It is inside storage unit out of sight. In the same manner we have been approached for someone to purchase the property and we are in negotiations with that at this time. We are supposed to get together Wednesday or Thursday depending on my schedule because I drive a semi truck and my hours vary as to when I get home in the evenings. Iím hoping within the next couple of months or something we will have more information on where that is going.
Ms. Whicker said so the two vehicles with the red flag those are the recreational vehicles.
Mr. Callahan said yes.
Ms. Whicker asked, are they now in the garage?
Mr. Callahan said the red vehicle on the back side has been moved to another location where the gentleman resides and the green one is mine and yes it is inside. We had the hood up because the battery was dead and we were in the process of charging the battery back up.
Mr. James said what was on the agenda was incorrect as far as invitees so some of those might be coming back next month.
Mr. McPhail asked, are you seeing progress on this 140 S. Mill? Is he making some progress of cleaning this up?
Mr. James said Iím not sure. I donít know when Emily took the photographs. I guess those photographs were taken today.
Mr. McPhail asked, what kind of direction are you looking for? If we arenít making progress, we are going to have to do something different.
Ms. Whicker said he said the red truck is in the garage with the motor.
Mr. Callahan said (inaudible).
Ms. Whicker said so it is off the property as well as the RV vehicles.
Mr. Callahan said yes.
Mr. McPhail made a motion that we withhold any fines or anything until next month and get a report from our Planning Director to see if we are making progress. Second by Mr. Brandgard. Motion carried.
Mr. McPhail made a motion to adjourn. Second by Mr. Brandgard. Motion carried.