Planning Board Public Meeting Minutes 20140430

The following minutes are a summary of the Planning Board meeting of April 30, 2014. For more detailed information, interested parties may request a CD recording of the meeting from the Board Secretary for a fee.

Call to Order & Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act: Chairman Nalbantian called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. The following members were present: Mayor Aronsohn, Councilman Pucciarelli, Chairman Nalbantian, Mr. Joel, Mr. Reilly, Ms. Dockray, and Ms. Peters. Also present were: Gail Price, Esq., Board Attorney; Blais Brancheau, Village Planner; Chris Rutishauser, Village Engineer, and Jane Wondergem, Board Secretary. Ms. Bigos and Mr. Hurley were absent.
Public Comments on Topics not Pending Before the Board – There were no comments at this time.
Correspondence received by the Board – There was no correspondence to report.
Approval of Minutes – The October 29, 2013 minutes were adopted as drafted.
Discussion re: COAH Rule Update – Mr. Brancheau and Ms. Price explained that COAH released a set of procedural and substantive rules and there will be a public hearing held on the rules in July. Mr. Brancheau said some of the changes included were that the default set aside was established at 10%, and the period of the obligation was extended from 2018 to 2024, an economic feasibility study required as part of the housing plan, adjustments to the obligation allowed for lack of developable land and other significant changes. Mr. Brancheau said action will be required by the Village to address the plan. There will need to be further discussion.
7:13 p.m. – Mr.  & Mrs. George Halwagy, 313 West Glen Ave., Block 1607, Lot 3 – Minor Subdivision application – Kathryn Gregory, Professional Planner for the applicant, addressed Mr. Brancheau’s amended report dated April 30, 2015. Mr. Brancheau had added comments regarding the retaining wall and the minimum combined side yards violation. Ms. Gregory explained that the combined side yard violation is due to the irregular shape of the lot
Ms. Price marked the correspondence from Charles Sarlo, Esq., dated April 16, 2014, as Exhibit A-6. The memorandum from Mr. Brancheau providing amended analysis, dated April 30, 2014, was marked as Exhibit B-3.
Councilman Pucciarelli asked for a “no build zone” along the 10’ side yard for Lot 3.02. Mr. Sarlo said the applicant would agree and stipulated that it would be a condition of approval.
The Board members asked for clarification of the major changes from the prior application. The Board members asked if the deck on the house on lot 3.02 would be removed. The applicant said it would be. The Board members asked if the shed would remain on Lot 3.02. Mr. Sarlo said the applicant would remove or relocate the shed, whichever the Board says is appropriate. The Board members asked if a sidewalk would be provided, or if it should be required, on Morningside. Mr. Brancheau said the Board could require that a sidewalk be provided. The Board members asked if the size of the proposed dwellings were consistent with the neighborhood. Ms. Gregory said they were.
Mr. Rutishauser arrived at the meeting at 7:30 p.m. Ms. Price asked Mr. Rutishauser regarding the need for a sidewalk on Morningside. Mr. Rutishauser said the sidewalk would be problematic in that location due to the location and that there are no other sidewalks in that area. There was Board discussion regarding the sidewalks.
Mr. Brancheau asked if the applicant is stipulating that the homes are to be built in accordance with the plans submitted. The applicant said he would agree to that condition.
Chairman Nalbantian asked about the shed. Mr. Brancheau said the ordinance has different setback standards for a shed than for a dwelling, but a shed needs to be separated by the dwelling by a certain distance and what the applicant is proposing requires a variance.
The Board opened the meeting to the public for questions.
Michael Tumarinson asked about the height of the proposed new dwelling. Mr. Sarlo said the site plan shows the height to be 30 feet and that complies with the ordinance.
The meeting was closed to the public.
Mr. Rutishauser said, regarding his report, that he would want concrete curbs along the Morningside Road frontage and that the applicant needs to replace and restore the sidewalks on the Glen Avenue frontage. Mr. Brancheau said the code requires a locking manhole cover, Mr. Kuros, the engineer, said they would comply. Mr. Sarlo said they would stipulate with all of Mr. Rutishauser’s comments from his report dated April 15, 2014 except that they want to keep the sewer lateral location on Glen Avenue and they will agree to accept the maintenance responsibility for that sewer lateral. Mr. Rutishauser and Mr. Brancheau asked that the applicant reduce the turnout width of the driveway from 30 feet and set back further from West Glen Avenue. Mr. Sarlo said the applicant would reduce the driveway to 15 feet if the Board recommends that. Mr. Kuros said the turnout needs to close to West Glen. The County Planning Board will also review the plan.
After Board deliberation a motion was made to approve the subdivision with conditions. The conditions included but were not limited to: the addition of two windows on the north wall of the garage on Lot 3.01; no encroachment within the 10 foot side yard setback on Lot 3.02; removal of the shed and existing deck on Lot 3.02; relocate the retaining wall on Lot 3.01; revise the driveway design for Lot 3.02 to change the size of the turnaround to 10-12 feet only and move the turnaround area further from Glen Avenue; reconstruct curb and sidewalk along Glen Avenue and include a concrete curb along Morningside Road; no construction on either lot to commence until demolition of the existing second dwelling. The Board voted in favor of the motion with 5 aye votes and 2 nay votes.
8:41 p.m. – Scherrer Enterprises, LLC, 160-166 S. Broad St., Block 3905, Lots 4 & 5 – Ms. Price gave an overview of the resolution and conditions of approval. Ms. Price said that Dr. Scherrer is asking that a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy (T.C.O.) be issued. Charles Collins, attorney for the applicant, explained that Dr. Scherrer’s lease was ending in his current location on May 12, 2014. Mr. Collins said they are asking for recognition that the applicant has submitted plans that are consistent with what the Board had discussed. Mr. Collins said they are asking the Board to grant a T.C.O. that would extend for an appropriate period of time to allow them to complete the required conditions and allow Dr. Scherrer to move his practice into the building. Ms. Price explained the typical process and how that is different from what is being requested. Ms. Price said the Board does not issue the T.C.O., the Board would recognize that a T.C.O. with limitations could be issued by the Building Department. Ms. Price said the provisions would be that no T.C.O. could be issued until the Construction Official was satisfied that the space is acceptable, and that the pavement, striping, signage and lighting is installed, the Engineering Department is satisfied that the site can function without jeopardizing any issues of public health, welfare and safety, and that the time period for finalization of all conditions is 60 days.
Ms. Price went over the modifications to the resolution and the Board had some discussion regarding landscaping issues and the T.C.O. provisions.
The resolution of approval for Scherrer Enterprises, LLC, amended site plan, was memorialized with the discussed revisions.
9:12 p.m. – Chairman Nalbantian announced the resignation of Morgan Hurley effective immediately. Mr. Hurley had been a Board member for 25 years.
9:15 p.m. – Discussion re: Referral of Ordinance #3411 – Amendments to the redevelopment plan for the North Walnut Street Redevelopment Area – Mr. Brancheau said the Council had asked the Board for comments and to submit a redevelopment plan. Mr. Brancheau said the North Walnut Street Redevelopment Plan has been introduced in ordinance form and the public hearing would be held on May 14. Mr. Brancheau asked the Board to review the plan and discuss any issues they may have.
Mayor Aronsohn and Councilman Pucciarelli expressed that this is a great opportunity to get a parking garage downtown and to improve the Franklin Avenue corridor.
Some Board members had concern regarding the 60 foot height being permitted and there was a suggestion that the RFP should provide an incentive or preference to proposals which conform to the existing height limitations. Some Board members had concerns  regarding drive-in banks or drive-in pharmacies as permitted uses and allowing an assisted living facility in the area. Some Board members did not want the parking garage to be available to commuters.
Mr. Brancheau explained that some of the reasons to allow a height of 60 feetare that when using a parking deck to address the need for parking, some space is lost due to ramps, walls, stairs and elevators. Parking is lost when there is retail on the ground floor and that parking spaces would be needed for the Oak Street buildings which use the existing parking lot.
Board members asked if assisted living would have to be above retail, or that mixed use would be required. Mr. Brancheau said that assisted living should not be on ground level, but that entrance lobbies and other amenities could be on ground floor. There was discussion on other uses, besides retail, which could be permitted on the ground floor.
Ms. Price said, regarding the height concern, was that the only way the building could get to 60 feet is if parking is included.
After further discussion the Board authorized Mr. Brancheau to draft a summary of the issues discussed by the Board in a letter to the Council.
Other Business: There was Board discussion regarding scheduling, venues and extra meetings for May and June.
The meeting was adjourned at 10:15 p.m.


      Respectfully submitted,
      Jane Wondergem
      Board Secretary


Date approved: May 19, 2015

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