REGULAR MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF NOVI
MONDAY, JULY 26, 1999, AT 7:30 PM
COUNCIL CHAMBERS-NOVI CIVIC CENTER-45175 W. TEN MILE ROAD
Mayor McLallen called the meeting to order at 7:39 p.m.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
ROLL CALL: Mayor McLallen, Mayor ProTem Crawford, Council Members DeRoche (absent), Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid (arrived 7:40 p.m.)
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Member Schmid arrived at 7:40 p.m.
Mayor McLallen advised there is a request to add Number 11, Amendment to Mongolian Barbecue License Agreement under Matters for Council Action – Part II.
Member Lorenzo advised she would request that Council add Ethics Committee Status Report under Mayor and Council Issues.
CM-99-07-173: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Agenda as amended
Vote on CM-99-07-173: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
Mr. Kriewall stated that it is his pleasure to announce that Kathy Smith-Roy, has been selected as the new Finance Director, replacing Les Gibson who will be retiring on August 20, 1999. She has worked for the City since 1991 as the Controller. She formerly worked for Plante Moran as a Certified Public Account, has a Bachelor of Accountancy from Walsh College and an MBA from Eastern Michigan University. She is Vice-President of the Michigan Municipal Finance Officers Association.
Kathy Smith-Roy said she is grateful for the appointment and looking forward to a long career with Novi.
PUBLIC HEARING - Vacation of Chapman Drive
Mayor McLallen indicated several letters have been received with regard to the vacation of Chapman Drive. A majority is in favor of the vacation. She proceeded to open the meeting to comments from the audience.
James Korte – Shawood Lake, stated Chapman Drive, which is an alley/road, should remain as is until major development happens. He sees no reason to vacate the road. He feels it does not make sense to vacate a road that has no existing problems and to it is an area that the City will be purchasing back at a future date to develop the greater site. Therefore, it is so little of nothing but to the three houses which have been using it for a back entry for years.
Herb Schreer – 1805 East Lake Drive, said he was not present to challenge the previous speaker on the problems of Chapman Drive. There are numerous problems with trash, rodents and it needs to be cleaned up. The Council should have all the letters that state all the problems. The majority of the residents in the area would like this alley vacated. He hopes the majority will rule.
Peter Hoadley – said the Senior Housing Committee started approximately fourteen years ago. He served on the Committee for the last six years and worked hard to get the development where it is today. They were able to obtain free land. There is a huge demand for senior housing in the community. Surrounding communities all have senior housing. He urges the Council to approve the senior housing.
Richard Bond – 46700 Nine Mile, said he has a concern about the Decker Road Judgment and wanted to know what is the Council’s contingency plan, the total costs, how the City is covered with insurance, what should the tax payers expect as the worse case bottom line and how does the City plan to finance the matter. He would like to know who would answer his questions.
Mayor McLallen replied that the Council does not respond to questions at this time. Much of this information has been put forth previously and they would be happy to provide the information again.
Lynn Paul – 45761 Willingham, said she is a taxpayer and is very concerned about the Parks and Recreation Department. She would like to receive a list from Dan Davis or someone on the Council on what improvements are planned for the fiscal year 1999-2000. The Capital Improvement Plan is currently planning a Yorkshire Park and has appropriated $5,000 to this new park. This is a new park and she questions why it is going to exist when the existing parks are currently in bad disrepair. The number one safety concern she has is with the Spirit of ’76 Park. It has a large slide with no cushioned material. She has seen three children injured on the slide. That park is not highly used but she uses the field a lot. The State Law requires that all parks new and improved to exceed consumer product safety recommendations, with fall zones so children do not hit each other, age appropriate parks and signs to say what this park is used for and what age level would be appropriate for this park. Cushioned material is needed to be present under this area for safety issues, twelve inches or more, with proper height cushioned to be maintained. No bolts and concrete footers should be exposed.
CONSENT AGENDA (Approval/Removals)
Member Lorenzo removed Items F and L. Member Schmid removed Item K.
CM-99-07-174: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Schmid, CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Consent Agenda with the removal of F, L and K
F. Approval of Resolution appointing JCK & Associates, Inc. as Novi’s Municipal
Civil Engineer, Surveyor, Architect and Environmental Consultants
City Manager on the Building Authority
Vote on 99-07-174: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION – Part I
Mr. Nowicki said that last year the City was approached by one of the property owners abutting Chapman Drive asking for vacating of the roadway. After staff and consultant review of that portion of Chapman, it was determined that the roadway is used on occasion by some of the residence in the area and should not be vacated.
Mayor McLallen asked if Chapman goes all the way to East Lake Drive. Mr. Nowicki replied that there is no connection to East Lake Drive and that it is a dead end small roadway.
Mayor McLallen said there are a number of issues brought up in the letters received from residents and the speakers regarding the level of City maintenance and enforcement needed if it stays a City road. She asked if there has been any response to those questions. Mr. Nowicki said regarding the level of maintenance, the road is graded on an as needed basis. Since the road does not receive a lot of traffic, the level of maintenance that is required is far less than a roadway that has a lot of traffic. It is a dead end road and not utilized for access to East Lake Road, therefore, when it comes to snow removal, it is one of the last roadways on the list. There were some concerns about speeding and he does not see how that could be possible since it is a very short street.
Member Lorenzo indicated that she would like to see this matter postponed because she has not had an opportunity to review the packet of letters and information distributed to Council at the meeting tonight. She feels it is premature for Council to make any kind of decision and would like an opportunity to read the material presented, contact residents and look at the situation before making a decision. Some of the letters received were not written until today and she questions why this matter was placed on the Agenda since Council did not have all the information. Mayor McLallen replied that two weeks ago, Council announced that they would hold a public hearing on this date. A notice was placed in the newspaper and residents notified, therefore, Council has to follow-through with that announcement.
Member Mutch said that she has no objection to postponing action on this matter. One of the issues that came up in letter after letter, was the suggestion that the road is unsafe for other reasons. She feels there may be some police issues. She would like to have input from the Police Department as to how many calls they have received, what kind of calls are they receiving and is this fact.
Member Kramer feels that clarification should be given concerning the City’s maintenance responsibility. Even though it is an alley, should the grass be cut once a month or should a grader run down there once in awhile. He feels time is needed to absorb the material presented and look at the issues raised by homeowners in the area before making a decision. He would like to look extra closely at the property owners immediately affected.
99-07-175: Moved by Kramer, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:To postpone the request for consideration of Resolution vacating Chapman Drive within the Chapman Walled Lake Subdivision from Endwell to East lake Drive until the August 9, 1999 Council meeting with information requested to be provided
Mayor McLallen said that she wanted to make it clear that the subject of the vacation is a very short portion of Chapman Drive and some of the allegations may be referring to the portion of Chapman that is not subject to the vacation.
Member Schmid said that some of the allegations received note that there are problems with parking, cars, drinking and crime. Mr. Nowicki replied that he would contact the Police Department to find out if they can provide Council with the requested information.
Member Kramer said that when this matter is brought back before Council, he would be expecting to discuss the whole Chapman Road. While the subject is the vacation of the short portion of the road, if there are issues dealing with the entire road, he would like to discuss the whole Chapman Road.
Member Mutch said that Council received a group of letters stapled together and one separate letter from Mr. Adams, and asked if they were all grouped as letter of approval and asked the City Clerk if she stapled them all together? The City Clerk said her staff did staple the letters all together and they all came in the same envelopes today. The other letter came in singular, separate from the others.
Vote on CM-99-07-175: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,
Dennis Neiman advised the Council of the resolution which authorizes the Mayor and the City Clerk to execute a contract lease between the City and the Novi Building Authority. The Building Authority approved the lease and authorized the Chair and Secretary to sign the lease on the condition of the approval from the Council. Bids taken on the project have been reviewed and analyzed. The bond issue has been sized predicated upon those bids with capitalized interest. Upon the approval of Council the project could be under construction this fall. The process has been long and a number of people, like Kathy Crawford has worked years on the project.
Member Lorenzo commented that the project is strictly a financial arrangement. Has the Building Authority actually chosen a contractor for the project? Mr. Klaver said the successful bidder and general contractor is R. Lockwood Company. This process was preceded by a pre-qualification process, which means the only accepted bids from qualified contractors that had specifically developed senior housing. The R. Lockwood Company has tentatively awarded the project subject to Council approval on the lease and appropriate funding.
Member Lorenzo asked if the Building Authority already approved a construction contract or is that an element yet to come? Mr. Klaver said it has been conceptually approved it subject to reaching a final contract and approval of the funding. Member Lorenzo said the construction contract to actually build the facility will come before Council at another date. Mr. Klaver said no. The construction contract would be between Lockwood and the Building Authority. Member Lorenzo commented she has a concern. She wants to make sure the Building Authority is clear that the City wants to avoid any situations similar to the Ice Arena.
Member Lorenzo asked if the Building Authority is responsible for choosing the Management Company or is this going to be a Council action? Mr. Watson commented that the contract of lease that may or may not be approved, provides for the Building Authority, the City will convey the property to the Building Authority and the Building Authority will construct the senior housing and then the City will operate the senior housing. Member Lorenzo commented that Council would choose a management company to manage the facility? Mr. Watson said that is correct. Member Lorenzo commented it is important to communicate to the senior community that according to the current information that Council has been given, the lowest rental rates that includes an operation and management fee would be $605.00 per month. She wants the senior community to know and be comfortable with the numbers.
Mayor ProTem Crawford commented he would like to make a motion to accept the contract for the senior housing project. The process has been going on since early 1980’s. Throughout these years there has been a continued need and desire. The complex will have amenities and extra built-in features that would not be found in other apartments on the same costs.
CM-99-07-176: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Kramer, CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: For approval of Contract of Lease of the City of Novi Building Authority
Member Schmid asked what are the ramifications from the former Council going with the Building Authority? Mr. Neiman said, at the time, it was felt that most of the facilities built, throughout the state, had gone through the Building Authority Financing. It achieves a lower interest rate and allows communities to take advantage of expertise that may be present in the community.
Mr. Bendzinski added if the Building Authority Act 1 is read, the reasons for the establishment of the Authority Act in 1948 was for the purpose of constructing housing in municipalities.
Member Schmid asked about Bonding and if the City of Novi is in a position to sell bonds at a reasonable and good rate? Mr. Bendzinski stated the City of Novi enjoys favorable ratings, statewide and nationally. The City is rated in the second best category, the AA category, by two of the three rating agencies. The best is AAA, with about twenty-five Cities and/or Counties nation wide with an AAA rating. The AAA rating is almost equivalent to the United States government with the ability to print money. The rating is high because the City has been administered very well over the last twenty-five years and the legislative body has made sound policies through the years. When the process was started in March, after the sale of the general obligation bond issue, a conversation was had with both rating agencies. The rating agency was told the City was going to proceed with approximately $19,000,000, general obligation, limited tax, building authority bond for the purpose of Senior Housing. Would this have any ramification on the Cities rating? At that time, the rating agencies opinion was no. About a month ago, when the project was moving forward, and the possibility of selling bonds was a reality, the rating agency was called to schedule a meeting in New York, or the City of Novi. They asked why the City was concerned? Mr. Bobby replied it was because of the $40,000,000 judgment, under appeal, various bonds that are outstanding, and the City is going to issue $19,000,000 additional bonds. The rating agency indicated the likely hood of being down graded is very slim. They also asked where the judgement stands? Mr. Bendzinski responded we are probably twelve to eighteen months away from going to court.
Mr. Neiman added the rating agencies are the most dispassionate and objective folks. They rate the City in a comparative fashion with other communities around the country. The City has received two upgrades in the last five years and received no indication the upgrades are in jeopardy.
Member Schmid stated one of the difficulties we have had with the Senior Housing in the City of Novi is the affordability. If is a very difficult situation to build a building and have the rents pay of the construction and upkeep costs and have the costs affordable. The other problem had been location. There have been some delays, but this Council feels they have overcome the obstacles.
Member Mutch stated the issue is so complex it is difficult being succinct. This issue has become a priority for her after being elected to the City Council. She has heard from many residents who hope to move into it, from the people who are working hard to make it happen and those who had concerns about construction and costs. The information presented at an earlier meeting this evening has all been presented at prior meetings. She is very comfortable voting at this Council meeting, it is long overdue. Restating Member Schmid’s conclusion, defining affordable let alone achieving it is difficult. We are not building another apartment complex. This is a unique opportunity for the City to create a gathering place and/or service center, a place that is more than a building. She is pleased to be part of the Council that is moving this forward and hopes there is a majority of Council supporting this.
Member Kramer commented Members Schmid and Mutch have covered most of the positive aspects of the community. He would like to underline that it has been an ongoing thoughtful process which has been open and involved in the community over a long time, Council was prepared to bring this forward. The linch-pin allowing the housing to move forward, was the land donation. He too is very pleased to be able to present this proposition to the citizens.
Vote on CM-99-07-176: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,
Mayor McLallen thanked the Senior Citizens for their patience, Staff and Building Authority for the long hours they have invested to make sure it is done correctly.
3. Request for approval of Resolution establishing West Park Drive as the street name for the new roadway known as the Taft Road Extension and renaming West Road from the new roadway intersection to Pontiac Trail.
CM-99-07-177: Moved by Crawford, seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the street name West Park Drive for the new roadway known as the Taft Road Extension, and the renaming of West Road from the new roadway intersection to Pontiac Trail.
Member Mutch wanted some assurance from someone on the Street Naming Committee that the name will not be confusing when we have West Road and West Lake Drive in this area. Looking to the future there may be a pathway through the North Novi Park possibly called Parkway, Park Road or something close. Mayor McLallen asked if there was a contest to name the road? Mr. Kriewall responded the committee started with a contest, and the names were thrown out, none where appropriate. Ms. Hannan replied the Street Naming Committee reviewed the name and is familiar with Member Mutch’s concerns, they also discussed it with Police, Fire and Dispatch. They have made certain to identify each of the homes located in the area. After much discussion they agreed there shouldn’t be much conflict from a safety standpoint. The committee felt there would be less confusion because of the connection with West Road. Mr. Kriewall responded the residents living on West Road wanted to retain some element of West in the name. Member Mutch asked why it is not just West. Mr. Kriewall answered the road going east/west stays West Road, this road continues into Wixom. Member Mutch asked if West Park Road would be differentiated from the other in the numbering system? Ms. Hannan responded Mr. Saven would be handling the numbering.
Vote on CM-99-07-177: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch and Schmid
Member Kramer asked when will the road be opened? Mr. Kriewall answered at this time it looks to be sometime this fall, within the next thirty to forty-five days. They are ahead of Schedule.
Mayor McLallen reviewed the history of this issue. She also stated Children’s World Learning Center has gone through all of the appropriate reviews, public hearings, and discussions. Due to a citizens concern during the construction phase of this project the issue of the dumpster was brought to the Planning Department. It was determined the site plan and site planning process had been followed. The issue of the dumpster had not been raised at that time. There were subsequent meetings on site with the developer and some of the adjacent property owners they walked the site and tried to determine if there were other areas where the dumpster could be placed. Those discussions led to the fact that the most suitable places for this dumpster to be moved to would require the site plan be resubmitted for the site planning process. The developer of the daycare center has chosen not to do this. Council is being asked what other recourse there is, if any, to this issue. Mayor McLallen stated she did drive to the site, they are almost ready to open their doors. They are in the final phases of landscaping. There is a brick wall that runs northerly off of Ten Mile Road, along the adjacent property lines, that appears to be five feet in height. The dumpster is located near the northerly end of the wall with a brick housing. North of the daycare center is a small subdivision under construction. The issues brought to Council are from the homeowners that live east of the property. There is protection for the homeowner’s under the Ordinance, without an occupant, these are yet to determined. The Mayor stated that she drove to two daycare centers in her neighborhood, one being Rainbow Rascals on Eight Mile. She walked around the dumpster and found it to be extremely clean, the top locked down, and the gates closed. The other she visited was Pathways to Learning on Meadowbrook. It is separated from the neighboring homes by evergreen buffer and a berm. This site too was immaculate; there were a total of six trashcans, the tops secured and no odors. The staff visited other daycare centers in the community and checked the complaint records for all of the daycare facilities. The question is how to give the citizens a level of comfort that their interests are protected and at the same time have a Development that has done everything the City has asked them to do to this point according to the Ordinances.
Member Lorenzo sympathizes with the residents in this matter. She understands how the plans can be confusing to residents not familiar with reading site plans. In her opinion this is something the City also needs to rectify in the site plan manual. The plans need to be clearly marked with these types of items. She would like to see this change done immediately. She asked the City Attorney what Council’s options are in this situation?
Mr. Watson responded that he did not think Council could direct them to go back through the site planning process, the development has already completed the process once and started construction. The one exception would be if there were circumstances of them being in violation of one of the regulations. This instance is not the case.
Member Lorenzo asked to discuss " the Planning Commission shall consider the following factors in exercising its’ discretion where the location of activities on the site including the arrangement of buildings is such that the activities may create noise, order, or other nuisances." Would this be something that the Planning Commission should have looked at more clearly in terms of the dumpster? Mr. Watson stated she would have to question whether she would have exercised her discretion the same way the Planning Commission did at the time. The fact that other persons may exercise that discretion differently does not give rise to the level of making that determination void. The first alternative may be the applicant may be willing to voluntarily go back through the process and make some changes. Another alternative is to police this on a regular basis, and watch for specific violations. Either enforce those on a ticket basis or Zoning Ordinance as a nuisance persay, which means it will go to Circuit Court. There is no guarantee the Court will agree.
Member Lorenzo asked if the applicant is willing to go through the process again, could the Council waive the fees? Mr. Watson responded they could look at that issue. He does have some concern about using City funds for private benefit. It also may not be a concern, it may be considered remedying an anticipated nuisance. Mr. Watson would like to check into this further. Member Lorenzo believes there have been instances where Council has waived resubmittal fees.
Member Schmid asked Mr. Arroyo what other locations could the dumpster be where it would not interfere with residential? Mr. Arroyo explained the options are very limited. One, there is frontage on two public roads, essentially two front yard. They would need to meet appropriate set back requirements. Two, there are several site features on this site, a detention area, also Ordinance requirements that state "dumpsters shall be located in a rear yard", which limits where it can go. Also there are parking requirements, the daycare center is at the number of parking spots required and the accessibility for the waste trucks to get in and empty the dumpsters. He did not feel there was any reasonable alternatives. Member Schmid asked where would there be an alternative site? Mr. Arroyo asked if he meant meeting city ordinance requirements? Member Schmid answered yes, even if there may be a variance involved. Mr. Arroyo responded with a possible variance from Zoning Board of Appeals and Council, towards the front of the building was discussed. It also would need to be cleared with the Fire Department; they have an access pad. Also in front of the parking lot, in the front yard, requiring variances. One other location next to the building, where the parking lot starts to make a turn, this would cost two parking spaces. The spaces could not be created at the end of the lot. The spaces would not be accessible in the location where the dumpster is now located. Member Schmid commented if the Council could accommodate homeowners it should be done. He does not want to see the homeowners go back through the process of site plan to change the site of the dumpster. Could the dumpster be moved? Mr. Arroyo said a procedure would have to be followed according to the ordinance. Member Schmid mentioned people come to Council asking for waivers and wonders if that can be done. Mr. Watson said this issue is a special land use, which calls for specific procedures to be followed. The Zoning Ordinance does have provisions for variances, which goes to the Zoning Board of Appeals. This issue would have to go the Zoning Board of Appeals because Council cannot grant a waiver. Member Schmid asked if the ZBA could grant a waiver? Mr. Watson said they might grant a variance on the location issue and procedural issues.
Member Mutch commented Council would like to do something but she is concerned that Mr. Finnamore, who represents the daycare center, said he is not interested in any changes. If this is not true then let us work with the representative of the daycare center. Mr. Pham said it is true. When the concern was brought to his attention he was open to suggestions. However, when he was given the outline of what would have to be done and was told the City would work with him, he felt there was no problem. Member Mutch asked Mr. Watson what options exists when the owner is showing no interest for change? Mr. Watson said the option is rigorously enforcing the performance standards in the ordinance. This means having it reviewed on a regular basis for violations for the performance standards. Member Mutch said legally there are no other options? Mr. Watson said the other option is by a directive requiring the owner to go back through the process. Member Mutch asked if the City could require the owner to go through the process? Mr. Watson said he does not believe that can be done. Member Mutch said there seems to be a couple of options that might be able to be done. The first would be to have the attorney research the possibility of having the property owner go back through the process. The other option being Council formally contact the property owner to encourage a meeting to find a satisfying resolution. When this issue went through the Planning Commission was it discussed at all? Mr. Pham said the minutes were reviewed and no reference to the dumpster location was found. Member Mutch invited residents to contact a Council Member if a concern arises that the resident might need a simple answer for.
Member Kramer commented the Council is responsive to the concerns about the daycare center dumpster. He said it is unfortunate that the situation came forward at this late date. The business followed the city ordinance requirements to this point. There is willingness on part of the Council to make adjustments should there prove to be a problem. He supports the discussion with the enforcement of the operation of the facility and continue to talk to the property owner to see if he is willing to make adjustments in the site plan. Mr. Watson will continue reviewing the situation.
Mayor McLallen commented the Planning Commission and Planning Department are recommending the issue. The recommendation goes along with the performance all consultant recommendations. There is a request for Council to waive building setbacks and a request to waive sidewalk requirements and permit the continuation of existing five foot concrete sidewalks with the exception of frontage in the new area. A request for Council was sent to the ZBA requesting a variance for parking lot screening and an approval of a variance from the Construction Board of Appeals to allow for openings in the wall facing the City park property. The last request is for the elimination of a westerly connection into the pre-existing business that is not part of the Novi Town Center called Soft Cloth Auto.
Matthew Quinn came before Council representing the Lender Company, Aetna Life Insurance, managers and owners of the Novi Town Center. The last time these persons meet with Council, the components of a development agreement were discussed for the development of the Novi Plaza and the Urban Space Park. Many people have worked to come up with the final language of the documents. All the terms have been agreed upon now it is a matter of putting it all together into one document.
The reason persons from the Novi Town Center came to Council was for a revamping of the center so it could keep up with new development that is occurring within the City of Novi to stay competitive. This consisted of upgrading the four main entrances along with placing art pieces along Grand River and Novi perimeters of the shopping center areas. There is to be redevelopment of the main intersections so that these would stand out and have access into the Novi Town Center instead of the traffic congestion that now exists. With the upgrading of these entranceways and the entire perimeter of the Novi Town Center, the Center will maintain the landscaping and be expanded even more.
Mr. Quinn commented besides the upgrading of the perimeters for the entranceways, a proposal of three new buildings. A retail building with 8,000 square feet adjacent to Discount Tire and two building pads with square footage of 8,000 and 7,000 adjacent to the new park. One of the buildings probably will be a restaurant and the other would be a multi-purpose retail with some food orientation.
Mr. Quinn explained the two commercial buildings as mentioned, the easement areas for the outdoor setting areas with this one totally being within the City owned property. The other is 50% within the City property. The Novi Town Center group would like to maintain the existing sidewalk, which is one of the variances. Along the Grand River and Novi perimeter the group is asking the typical cement sidewalk be placed adjacent to the right-of-way. The other problem with any extension of the bike path is several groups own some of the property. The location of the buildings adjacent to the park, nicely fit and follow the recommendations of the consultants in creating the downtown atmosphere. That is why they are pulled so close to Grand River and Novi Road and into the park. That is why the Novi Town Center group needs Council to grant a front and side yard variances. The Planning Commission supported recommending these variances to Council.
Mr. Quinn said one thing that created some interest in the Planning Commission hearing was the shared driveway with the car wash coming in off Grand River. The driveway comes in and there is an entranceway into the Novi Town Center parking area, which currently does not exist. Also, at the other end of the car wash there is an access that would be used as basically an emergency escape route for cars that come into the car wash and too tall to go through the car wash. There will be a double stack road into the car wash that will eliminate the backup of traffic onto Novi Road. An agreement was made with the property owner of the car wash for allowing them to stack; an access would be available to enter the site for the restaurant. The traffic should be the same because vehicles already have to turn left into the car wash travelling south on Novi Road. If this is a concern of the Council, because the Novi Town Center group really does not have the support of the Planning Commission or the City Consultants, but the group still thinks it is important enough to monitor. He would like to see approval of the layout with this site plan and grant a six month or year review period so the consultants can monitor the entrance. If the entrance shows difficulty then the parties would agree at the end of the review period to terminate the access lane. The Novi Town Center group would like to have a 30 day notice even before six month period is up to close the access and later do the appropriately landscaping.
Mr. Quinn commented on the structure of the buildings. The park will be in the direct center with two buildings being on either side of the park. All the facades have been reviewed and approved by the Planning Commission and the consultants. With the three new building pads, the most important element is the park. Aetna is committed to $400,000 for soft and hard costs in the development of the park. The City of Novi would build the fountain after the rest of the park has been completed because of the fund raising mentioned previously. If the landscaping can be done under the $400,000, Aetna will donate the balance toward the fountain cost. The cost of the fountain is in the bidding stage so the final figure is not known. The fountain that was decided upon by the AdHoc Committee is a 40 foot diameter fountain with six 6 foot bubblers in front and three other bubblers at 8, 10 and 12 feet going through the top.
Mr. Quinn commented the Aetna Company is winning because it is seeking three new building pads that they do not currently have approval for in the Novi Town Center Plan. The City of Novi is winning because the open space requirements of the Novi Town Center Plan will still continue to be met. There will be three new viable businesses in the City producing a tax base and it is a location that will improve visibly.
Member Mutch commented on the shared drive with the car wash and would like an explanation on how the drive would have the ability to double stack. Mr. Quinn explained when the first lane is backed to Novi Road, a second lane would be started that goes to the entrance of the car wash also. The employees would alternate between the lanes by going to one and then the other. Member Schmid commented the car wash is getting additional land. Mr. Quinn said that is correct. Member Mutch said someone would have to be at Novi Road to tag the vehicle in order to go to the other lane. The practical side of procedure does not seem to work for her. Mr. Quinn said the worker who collects the fee would be responsible and have the manpower to handle the situation. The rear emergency exit would be chained. The reason it is chained is because if a vehicle enters and for a number of reasons has to exit the car wash, the exit could be unchained for the vehicle to exit instead of turning against the traffic to go to Novi Road. Member Mutch said that is the same problem that exists at the present time. Mr. Quinn said the chain accesses is safer way to exit.
Member Mutch commented on the entrance closest to Novi Road. How does this lane fit in with double stacking? Mr. Quinn explained the lanes would be stacked the most on the winter weekends and the restaurant will not be open during the morning. Member Mutch said her concern is if a vehicle is coming off of Novi Road at a time when there is double stacking, are people going to have a problem going in or out? Mr. Quinn said a vehicle cannot go out because it is one way. Member Mutch asked if a vehicle is travelling north on Novi Road, will the driver be able to see that the lanes are double stacked before they arrive at the car wash? Mr. Quinn said he believes that should happen. The driver would have to make the decision to wait in line or go to Crowe Drive. Member Mutch said there could be continued stacking on Novi Road. Mr. Quinn said that is possible.
Member Mutch commented she is an advocate of sidewalks and does not see anything to be gained by switching construction materials in the middle of the area. She suggests that maybe the sidewalk design and construction materials may need to be addressed in the Novi Town Center requirements. The point mentioned by Mr. Quinn about the sidewalk construction material may have some merit because different materials could be used for types of purposes.
Member Mutch had questions about the park and fountain area. If this is City property, who actually handles the bidding and does the construction even though Aetna is supplying the money? Mr. Quinn answered this will be handled by the Administration. What is being anticipated is, that Aetna will be bidding all of it privately. The City has the right to review the costs. The idea is this will be built at the same time the landscaping of the other buildings. There is a benefit and cost saving in being able to bid a larger project. Member Mutch said the City would like to have some say in the process.
Member Mutch does have a continued concern about the driveway at the car wash. She sees the need of accessing that in a way that allows people who are travelling Novi Road to avoid getting onto Grand River and turning left. She is not in full support of the solution presented.
Member Schmid commented he thought the car wash would have three lanes. There would be two stacking lanes and a driveway. He agrees with Member Mutch that there are viable concerns. Are there any possibilities of having a third lane? Mr. Quinn said there is not enough space. He said the Novi Town Center is allowing the car wash to come on their property. Member Schmid commented to add another 10 feet. Mr. Quinn said there is not enough land.
Member Schmid said he does not like the chain gate because it looks tacky. It appears the car wash owner wanted it. Mr. Quinn answered it was part of the negotiations. Member Schmid believes a chain is an eyesore and does not fit into the quality area that is being developed.
Member Schmid questioned if it is required to have brick pavers especially in front of the park? Mr. Quinn commented there will be cement sidewalks up to the brick splash and then there is the curve line.
Ralph Nuvia from the Design Team said currently there is a 5 foot sidewalk coming from the car wash and a 3 foot brick strip stops at the gas station site. There has been talk about continuing the brick. One of the issues is there is a 5 foot sidewalk along Grand River until the change of the design standards for Grand River. A possibility if an 8 foot walk is required, is to place it back a foot outside of the right-of-way. This way the development could occur at one time at one expense.
Member Schmid asked Mr. Quinn what are hard and soft costs? Mr. Quinn said there is a significant amount of money in designing. Member Schmid commented it would have to be designed regardless. He thought the $400,000 was hard costs to build the facility and the Novi Town Center group would pick up the soft cost. Mr. Quinn said the soft costs are the design costs. Member Schmid would like an estimate of the cost because he is concerned about the cost of the park project. Mr. Quinn answered he cannot make a guess. Member Schmid again commented the cost could be heavy and the City would have to pick up the cost.
Member Kramer commented he believes by stacking lanes it will help the car wash business. He does not think the extra lane will effect traffic. He wants to know the plan of the Novi Town Center group if Council decides to agree with the City Consultants and Planning Commission? The current plans show an extra 10 foot space to the car wash in exchange for the entrance. If the entrance is denied, does the group take the 10 feet back and move the landscaping up and readjust the parking lot?
Craig Hessie from the Linder Company said their intention is to be good neighbors with the car wash and proceed with an agreement to have a stacking lane regardless of whether or not that there is a curb cut placed as part of the agreement made this night.
Craig Hessie addressed the emergency lane with a chain. He said there is a significant amount of money being spent on the project. He is not going to let the chain fall into disrepair. The car washer operator himself is spending a significant amount of money on his building and one of the groups will take care of the chain. Member Kramer commented the additional laneage is good for business but is not convinced it would help the traffic condition.
Member Kramer commented there is another entrance to the shopping center on the north side of the car wash called Crowe Drive. Are the setback and stacking and all the traffic engineering really correct to add traffic in the location? Mr. Arroyo said it is much better to do it at the Crowe location than at the car wash location. Mr. Arroyo said the entrance into the Wonderland Plaza is a concern. He explained the center turn lane is the same for the Plaza on the west and the car wash on the east side of Novi Road. It is not a good situation.
Member Lorenzo asked if there is a third lane and right turn only, how would that impact the traffic situation? Mr. Arroyo asked why would there be the third lane? Member Lorenzo answered at the car wash. Mr. Arroyo said if there is a third lane more cars could be stacked and that might have a minimal impact on the right turn in but it is not going to have any impact on the left turns. Member Lorenzo asked about the queuing situation on Novi Road? Mr. Arroyo does not believe it is necessary given the fact the car wash will be doubling the stacking at the car wash. He anticipates with two stacking lanes there would not be very many days where traffic would be stacked on Novi Road. Member Lorenzo asked would a third lane with a right turn only help the situation? She is very concerned about the left turns. She asked Mr. Arroyo if any entrance is allowed off there, then left turns in, will it be a bad situation? Mr. Arroyo said yes and it raises a situation where there will be an increase of left turns. Member Lorenzo commented she is in favor of trees and landscaping but with a situation like this, if it meant an extra 10 feet with the loss of landscaping and it would do some good, she would say give another waiver and get a third lane. She wanted confirmation that a third lane with a right turn only is not applicable. Mr. Arroyo said he sees the control as limited. Member Lorenzo said for the record she is opposed to the left turn under these circumstances.
Member Lorenzo commented the park was originally going to include the fountain and then the design got to costly. Is that correct? Mr. Quinn commented the group was committed to a budgeted amount around $400,000. A fountain that was costing about $35,000 within this budget and Council did not like the way the fountain looked so that was when the AdHoc Committee got together and a sketch of the fountain was done at the meeting. The group is waiting for the cost estimates to come. Member Lorenzo commented she does not want the tax payers to have to pay anything. She is not in support of using any money from the General Fund for the fountain. Mr. Quinn stated when the AdHoc Committee gets together would they look at bid costs. Member Lorenzo asked who authorized the bid process? Mr. Quinn said Council has not authorized anything. Member Lorenzo asked what engineering estimates have been received? Member Kramer said the cost of the fountain will be coming. Member Lorenzo wanted it to be clear that no money should be spent that Council did not authorize concerning the fountain.
Member Kramer commented the AdHoc Committee was formed to propose an alternate fountain design that was more with the vision that Council had for the park. It was not the intention of the committee to spend any more. The concept is that the fountain would be at an appropriate scale and affordability. These figures have not been presented at this time. If the amount is too high, then the design will have to be reviewed and see whether adjustments can be made. The overage over the Linder money that is allotted for the construction, was conceptually going to be raised by sale of brick pavers in the community with support from civic groups. This will be brought back to Council when there is a proposal. Member Lorenzo commented she would have been content with the original design proposed and have Linder fund the fountain.
Member Lorenzo said she has some concerns about the storm water management on the site and it has been a concern since the beginning. The storm water flows into storm sewers, which flow directly into a stream and the Middle Rouge River. Other than a standard gas and oil separator, Mr. Bluhm has advised her that there will not be any other type of water quality control measures such as a pretreatment basin. On surface water in addition to gas and oil, there is salt and chemicals. She is also concerned about the water quantity going into the stream and what effects is that going to have on the stream, river and any adjacent properties in terms of flooding during a 10 or 100 year storm. The only way she would support the preliminary plan is if these issues comes back for final approval because she would like to see what will be proposed to address the water quality and quantity issues before final approval. If there is just a standard gas and oil separator she could not support dumping all of the surface water into the stream and Middle Rouge River without any other type of treatment.
Mr. Quinn stated the Novi Town Center group will do everything the City of Novi Ordinance, DNR and EPA requires. The group will comply with any rules or regulations that have to be followed and does not believe that is a necessity to come back to Council because City Engineering Department is certifying that the group is complying with all the local, state and federal ordinances. Member Lorenzo said if she approves this now and it is not addressed by final, she could not approve the final plan. If it being handled administratively, then obviously Council is giving someone else that authority and in that case she could not support it at this time.
Member Lorenzo commented Mr. Bluhm said technically, accordingly to Novi Ordinances, the site accumulatively would require on site detention. Mr. Bluhm stated the site is impervious. A good portion of retail B is an existing parking area. Up to 70% of the site is already impervious. When the Novi Town Center was originally developed, the storm water detention was addressed down stream, into the Rouge River and into the Trans-x / Ten Mile and Novi Road basin area. A and B was already addressed and a lot of the site is impervious so the issue of having to store on site has been addressed down stream and not required on site. Member Lorenzo said earlier Mr. Bluhm told her in terms of acreage, technically that would be required. Mr. Bluhm said that referred to impervious surfaces and about 70% of the area is impervious and additional storm water will not be added to the system. This is part of the Novi Town Center and was already addressed in the down stream conveyance system and the regional basin down stream from the location. Any additional areas beyond the 70% that are already impervious would have been addressed a time long ago.
Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Bluhm if he knows in terms of quantity how much water this will be adding to the stream and Middle Rouge? Mr. Bluhm stated the engineer could provide the quantity but this outlets into the Middle Rouge and the Middle Rouge is very large. Member Lorenzo commented on the terms of quality of the water. How is this going to impact the stream? Mr. Bluhm stated the quality of water is always an issue. The Amoco site has been given the "ok" sign from the DDQ as far as contamination levels. The sites A & B do not warrant, by themselves a sedimentation basin but together they would. The best thing is to get the storm water off the site as fast as possible to not allow the water to go into the ground water and have the potential to irate anything remaining in the Amoco site. This was an overriding need as opposed to providing a separate basin on site. Member Lorenzo asked if that is an expert opinion? Mr. Bluhm stated it was a practical matter. Member Lorenzo stated she would like to hear from an environmental specialist to determine how much of contaminants may remain.
Mayor McLallen commented Member Lorenzo stated her concern clearly and within the ordinances those concerns will have to be addressed.
Mayor ProTem Crawford made a motion but wanted clarification on the sixth recommendation, which the elimination of the westerly connection to the Soft Cloth car wash. Does this mean the traffic would not come from parking into the stacking lane or would this connection be eliminated? Mr. Quinn commented there would not be an access from the car wash into the Novi Town Center. The motion dies from lack of support.
Member Schmid stated that there was an indication that Council was advised that it is not the intention of the Town Center group to move all the plant material. Ms. Lemke commented the look the group is going for is a very formal one with hedges and plant material. There are a number of brick walls. The large shrubs along Grand River will be removed with some of the trees. They are looking for an open look to the Center for more visibility. It is a more formal, urban look than what is present at the site now. Member Schmid commented he was under a different impression. The petitioner said he apologizes for the confusion. It was not the intention for all the shrubs and trees to be removed from the Center. The entranceways are going to be opened up and remove some of the trees where openness is desired. The formal look is primarily at the entranceways and the signage will be changed to make a more permanent look. Member Schmid wanted clarification that the intent is not to move all the plant material but a proposal to prune the mature plantings properly and remove some of the shrubs along the entrances. He commented when driving by a year from now he will not be seeing a totally different look but be seeing the mature trees that are there now except near the entrances? The petitioner said that is correct. Member Schmid is concerned. To cut down many mature trees is a mistake because it takes away from the attractiveness of a downtown. The Center is going to close some of the large shrubs that give the site a mature and almost informal look because they are large and rambling. The Center is now looking for a repetitious pattern in many areas and especially at the entrances. Member Schmid said he thought the City had an agreement with the developer to try to maintain most of the maturity and open up the entrances but other than that the maturity of the trees where it would look mature as opposed to a new development. Ms. Lemke said she does not want Member Schmid to be disappointed with the final results. She explained there would be some mature trees that will be removed. Member Schmid wondered if Ms. Lemke would be disappointed? He does not necessarily want to see this come back for final. He commented that he has never seen a plan come forward where there was so many requirements that were not noted. There are many things that are not noted on the preliminary that led him to believe that several things have to be worked on in the future. Mr. Arroyo said there are issues that need to be resolved. Member Schmid mentioned Mr. Arroyo and Ms. Lemke have stated several issues and wonder if that is usual or unusual? Mr. Arroyo explained that it is not that unusual because typically the major issues are addressed up front.
CM-99-07-178: Moved by Schmid, Seconded by Crawford, CARRIED: To approve the Preliminary Site Plan for the Town Center Shopping Center – SP-99-18A as presented with provisions by the Consultants and Planning Commission with the elimination of the westerly connection
Member Mutch commented she has a couple of questions. Does it mean with this motion that only western entrance from the stacking lane into the parking is eliminated? Mayor McLallen said to clarify Member Schmids’ motion includes all trans movement between the car wash and the Town Center sites with exclusion on the westerly line. Mayor ProTem Crawford said why take out the westerly entrance if it is only a problem a couple times of year? If it is only a problem a few times a year he believes there is an advantage in having the westerly entrance. Member Schmid said the traffic consultant’s recommended against it and the involvement with the use of one property owners’ lot to get into another lot.
Mayor McLallen asked Mr. Watson for clarification on the motion. The maker of the motion intended one idea and the second member does agree with the clarification. Mr. Watson said once a motion is seconded it is on the table. Mayor McLallen again stated that the motion prohibits any trans-movement between the car wash and the Novi Town Center property including the emergency entrance, which means the easterly and westerly entrances are eliminated.
Member Mutch commented the way into the restaurant areas would be through Sony or Crowe Drive. It would be nice to have the access from Novi Road for right hand turn. She does think that unless there is some other way to accomplish this, it is not going to happen. She does not think it is going to be safe enough for all the reasons that have been outlined. It is doubling the problem instead of solving it.
Member Mutch commented on the sidewalks around the Novi Town Center. Previously, when the issue was before Council, the issue was raised about internal sidewalks. How will people get from location to the other within the Center by walking through the parking lot or cross from the sidewalk that is already there to another sidewalk that will access these buildings? Mr. Arroyo said by crossing the parking lot at the traffic lane. Member Mutch asked if there is a sidewalk along with building? Mr. Arroyo said there is a walk system by the buildings. Member Mutch said on the recommendations for Council Action, the waiver is to permit continued use of 5 foot sidewalks with the exception of frontage along the new development sites. Does this means there will not be a sidewalk or it will be a different way? Mr. Arroyo stated it would be an 8 foot concrete for three paths and taper into the 5 foot sidewalk.
Mayor ProTem Crawford stated he does not care either way about the emergency access but the other entrance does have merit. It was mentioned one of the reasons to close the westerly access is to prohibit potential left hand turns for southbound traffic. If a vehicle wants to get to the restaurant it would be easier to turn onto Crowe Drive. The north bound traffic is being increased because not allowing a right hand turn the vehicle would have to be on Grand River and turn left on Sony Drive. Mr. Arroyo explained some of the options with the most efficient way probably would be coming into Crescent Boulevard and travel down Ingersol and enter the site. Mayor ProTem Crawford commented the concern is the increased potential of left hand traffic coming into the car wash site? Mr. Arroyo said yes. Mayor ProTem Crawford asked if there is going to a lot of cars trying to come in this way? Mr. Arroyo stated that because this is so close to the site people will learn the route and there will be the potential for the conflict with the drive. Mayor ProTem Crawford said this is a good project but he reluctantly supports.
Member Lorenzo said she would like to an amendment to the main motion to have this come back for final do the storm water issues along with the landscaping issues. The amendment to the motion dies with lack of support.
Mayor McLallen commented this is a significant project within Novi. There have been major changes in the look of the area to a more sophisticated appearance. The motion as it stands will allow it to be extremely successful and believes that not going there as far as the entrance will save the City and Linder Company and partners future problems. She supports the motion as it stands.
Member Mutch commented on people travelling south or north bound on Novi Road were to use Crowe Drive, this may have some impact on the businesses but people will get used to the direction to travel. The gain will be for the businesses that are in the interior of the site because people will learn what is available when patronizing the restaurants.
Vote on CM-99-07-178: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Mutch,
Mr. Patrick Burnett came before Council to ask for a memorandum of understanding or a letter of intent to put in writing some of the points that have been discussed with City Administration concerning the eventual transfer of properties between the Library Board and City of Novi. The Library and City of Novi is separate by ownership, funding, management and accountability to the public this is why the agreement needs to be made.
Mr. Burnett said planning has been done for a couple of years and the Library have determined to serve the community in the near future an 80,000 square feet is needed for a library. The current location is overcrowded and there is some urgency in moving forward. Some ideas that were discussed where to expand the current site or remove the building and construct a new facility. Two factors have arisen to change this direction. One is the City and the School Board are looking for additional properties. The current building is in good condition and can be used for other purposes. The second reason concerns the cost. The cost to build on new property verses building on the current property is relatively the same. There is no valid reason to stay on the current site.
Mr. Burnett commented a number of sites have been evaluated but a site suggested by the City Administration has been considered. The site is located on Taft Road, which is owned by the City of Novi. The Library would like to move forward with some investigations on that site. The Library is following a planning process that the American Library Association suggests and a schedule has been established. In order to keep on the schedule, some appraisals and engineering and environmental studies need to be done. The Library is also engaging in a public information and input program to help make some of the discussions. For these reasons, going public and spending public funds, it is felt that it would be worthwhile to have documentation. The Library is not asking for the property or the price this evening but discussing the eventual exchange when the conditions have been met on buildability and development ability and availability of funding and coming to terms with the City on the two properties.
Member Kramer stated the discussion has happened with the Library Board over the last year. He understands and supports the library use of the property. The memorandum of understanding states that the Council intents to transfer to the board and the board intents to transfer to the Council the Library. There has only been light discussion on the current library property to be used by the City and he requests that the City Manager give Council an assessment of what is the value and benefit to the City in the use of the library facility.
Mr. Kriewall explained the base office needs are being stranded through the next few years and currently office space is limited for new hirees. There are some future uses that could be transferred to that facility. Some possibilities are moving the entire Parks and Recreation Department or the Novi Youth Assistants to obtain more office space in the Civic Center. The possibility of doing Senior Citizen programming in the building along with the potential of the theater and other groups use the building. Mr. Klaver has also met with the Novi School Board and the Novi Community Education Department might like to have half of the building. The public should be used for a public purpose and between the schools and City the needs are coming rapidly. Member Kramer commented he is in support of the issue but felt it should be confirmed by Administration.
Member Schmid said he is in support of relocating the Library and the use of the current property for other purposes. He asked Mr. Kriewall for a brief history of the current library property. Mr. Kriewall said the property is 7 acres, which is owned by the Library Board. The Library Board handled the bond issue back in the 70’s and constructed the building except for the easterly wing. The City made an arrangement to enter the building for approximately 10 years and a bond issue was done to complete the eastern portion of the building. Member Schmid asked if it was a City bond issue? Mr. Kriewall said yes. Member Schmid commented the City built a portion of the building. Mr. Kriewall stated the City finished the east portion of the building. The City was in the building for 10 years and at the time of leaving the library, the library needed to expand into the area.
Member Schmid commented on the language of the document. Mr. Watson stated the City directed the City Attorney to draft a Memorandum of Understanding. He said he took the document from the Library as a draft but not the completed form.
Member Lorenzo would like an analysis of the worth if Novi Schools purchases the property from the City of Novi if a trade was made for the Taft Road property. Mr. Kriewall mentioned the Library Board owns the current property. Member Lorenzo said if the Library trades the property to the City and the City takes the current library property, the City could sell it. Mr. Kriewall said that could be done. Member Lorenzo stated the City may need money in a couple of years and she is looking for any other sources of money without having to go back to the taxpayers. Mayor McLallen stated the appraisals would be done by and at the expense of the Library. Member Lorenzo strongly suggests the Library do some outreach programs in the neighborhoods adjacent to the property and get them involved in the development of the property. She also suggests that a Ten Mile Road access be available to the property. Mr. Burnett commented those are good suggestions.
Mayor ProTem Crawford commented several potential sites have been viewed throughout the City but if the City of Novi enters into the memorandum the City locks into the Taft Road site. He does not disagree with the potential uses for the current library site but he is reluctant to enter a non-draft memorandum because of the concerns that have been raised previously on the use of the Taft Road site.
Member Mutch commented she is aware of the time the library has put into researching all the possibilities and through the entire process the library has been involved with the community. There have been conversations going on in the community and it seems most of the feedback has been positive. Mr. Burnett mentioned the library talked to Council at a March meeting and it was reported in the paper on the site. Member Mutch would support the idea of negotiating options on the use of the property.
CM-99-07-179: Moved by Mutch, Seconded by Kramer: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To direct the City Attorney to draw up a formal Memorandum of Understanding between the City of Novi and the Novi Library Board with comments discussed
Vote on 99-07-179: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Ms. Debbie Bundoff voiced concerns regarding the Novi Town Center park in allowing the massive over build on the site in order for a park to be a developed. It is a minor benefit to the City. The people who have paid through the purchase of that property, concessions given to the property owner and business that was there along with giving them other sites and businesses throughout the City that would not have been allowed on the properties otherwise. The Novi Town Center can build sites that would not have been allowed and yet, still limit that they may or may not complete that site at their cost to build the park. The development wins because it gives the look to the restaurant and the other retail businesses. The entire park does not need to be built if it is not within their entire budget.
BREAK at 11:28 p.m. until 11:45 p.m.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION – Part II
CM-99-07-180: Moved by Lorenzo, Seconded by Kramer, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To adopt as presented for I Reading
Vote on 99-07-180: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Mr. Kriewall recommended that Item #7 be retitled to Economic Development Road Fund Grant Match.
Member Mutch asked if there was anything more Mr. Kriewall could say to reassure voters as to how the money is going to be spent. Mr. Kriewall explained by labeling it Economic Development Fund Grand Match, it is a specific grant category tied to economic development and new business and industry. The money cannot even be used for the Ten Mile Road Project because it is a totally different grant channel. Member Mutch asked what types of road projects that have been talked about might fall into the category? Mr. Kriewall stated the primary target is the Grand River widening from the CSX bridge to Beck Road but does not want to get to specific because it could be used somewhere else.
Member Mutch commented on the Beck Road Interchange. When that was first proposed a specific amount would be the City share of 6 million and that amount was not to be cash but property that Providence was willing to donate as right-of-way that in affect was the Citys’ share. Mr. Kriewall commented there is still hope that may happen but there is no guarantee. Member Mutch stated when it shows up in the road program as the City’s share in dollars, the City has to be prepared to pay in case Providence or the state does not allow this to become local share. Mr. Kriewall commented he has no doubt Providence would donate the land but there is some question whether the state is going to consider that a local match.
Member Lorenzo said she brought up Item #7 as a potential concern at the last vote on the issue. She would like the language ‘to be determined’ to read ‘to be determined by City Council’. Mr. Kriewall commented that would be good language.
Member Kramer commented it would be additionally helpful if the description read ‘by State Economic Development Road Fund Grant Match’. He recommends this because it is a state fund.
Member Kramer likes the comment section of the road project chart because it clarifies that sidewalks and bike paths will be included. Do the Road Projects include the landscaping, lighting and signalization? Mr. Kriewall answered it depends on the project. Member Kramer commented the most important priority is the intersection improvements to get traffic flowing through the City. It is listed in the second season but would like to see that in the first season. He believes the intersections are where the citizens are going to receive the largest benefit. Mr. Nowicki commented there are 7 or 10 different intersections that are going to be spread out so it in can be moved into the first year but the entire process will take about three years. Member Kramer commented to give the citizens relief in travelling through the City, it is very important. Mr. Nowicki said it could be moved with the understanding that this year expenditures would continue. Member Kramer said he would support the resolution with the revisions that have been discussed.
Mayor ProTem Crawford said if opportunities present themselves, then the project would be done. He does not accept and will not vote for the resolution for Item #7 saying Economic Development Fund Road Grant Match to be determined by City Council. Every one of the projects is to be determined by Council. To include that language is out of place and he will not vote for it for this very reason if it is included.
Member Schmid asked Mr. Nowicki if Delmont Drive is to be built in 2000. What if something comes up and it is not built? Mr. Nowicki said Council would be informed. Member Schmid asked if the list given to Council is a priority list? It is a tentative plan and if it were not followed Council would be informed. Mr. Nowicki said that is correct.
Member Schmid asked if the Economic Development Fund is coming back to Council? Mr. Nowicki said yes because whenever the City submits for a grant it has to come before Council.
CM-99-07-181: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Mutch, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: For Approval of Resolution adopting the 1999 Roadway bond Program with comments from discussion
Mayor McLallen mentioned under the Economic Development it reads State and wonders if there are other grant possibilities available? Mr. Nowicki agreed some opportunities could be missed if it is entitled just as State Economic Development Grants. Mayor ProTem Crawford wanted clarification that it will read Economic Development Fund Road Grant Match.
Member Lorenzo stated she still believes the language should include ‘to be determined by City Council’. She commented the public will read the document and some clarification might be needed for residents to understand that it will be reviewed by City Council.
Member Lorenzo commented on the development schedule and would say the Nine Mile Road improvements would be more important than Meadowbrook Road improvements in terms of residents in this community actually seeing and feeling the differences being made. Mr. Nowicki commented that line item is a grant so it has to be submitted and awarded.
Member Lorenzo wanted a reason why there is not a left turn signal at Nine-Mile and Novi Road? Mr. Nowicki said it has not been installed yet. Member Lorenzo asked about Beck and Nine Mile? Mr. Nowicki said that is the way it was designed because the warrants were not there to support a left turn signal. There is one at Novi and Nine Mile Road and that is scheduled to be bid and constructed through the Road Commission of Oakland County as will Taft and Twelve, West Road and South Lake Drive and Eleven Mile and Beck Road. Member Lorenzo asked when would these be in place? Mr. Nowicki said the signals should be in place this fall.
Member Mutch commented the City has a Public Information Director and she would expect whatever is done this evening, the information will be brought to the community. Mayor ProTem Crawford commented that information should be developed in a brochure to inform the community. Mr. Nowicki extended an offer to any homeowner’s association or civic group within the community, who would like an explanation on the road bond program to contact himself or the Civic Center to schedule a meeting.
Vote on CM-99-07-181: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Mr. Nowicki commented the funding is derived from the 1M road millage along with Act 51. In the programs, the projects are primarily associated with maintenance.
Member Mutch commented there are residents that find it confusing to distinguish between the 6 year road program and bond issues. She suggested when Mr. Nowicki makes the public presentation and work with Mr. Martin to make the distinction between the millage and Act 51 monies and what that buys for the community and what the road bond program accomplishes. It is also important to address the comments from residents about the incompletion of roads with the last road bond.
CM-99-07-182: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Mutch, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: For Approval of the 1999 six-year Road Bond Program and adopt the authorizing resolution
Member Schmid stated Mr. Nowicki mentioned a grant that was rescinded and then not rescinded. Mr. Nowicki said the City has contracts with the Michigan Department of Transportation totaling just over $600,000 or $700,000 with the total grant being for 1.1 million. Member Schmid said it is still $300,000 or $400,000 short. He asked Mr. Nowicki if he anticipates getting the money back. Mr. Nowicki said he believes there is a good opportunity and chance in that happening. Member Schmid said it should be publicized that there is still $600,000 committed because residents believe the City lost the entire grant. He agrees the public needs to be better informed.
Member Lorenzo commented on the 6 Year Road Program with regard to the subdivision maintenance repairs. Are these actually longer that 6 years or is it 6 years for each subdivision? Mr. Nowicki stated the staff tries to get in and out of one subdivision in one summer between the end of the school year and beginning of the next. How frequently are subdivisions repaired? What are the intervals? Mr. Nowicki said the useable life of pavement that has been repaired is 15 to 20 years. It would be on a 15 to 20 year cycle depending on the condition of the pavement.
Mayor McLallen commented as the 6 Year Road Program reads, there are different subdivisions programmed each year the categories are the same, but the actual surfaces are different. Mr. Nowicki commented an aggressive amount of work has been done in subdivision repairs and that speaks well of the community.
Vote on CM-99-07-182: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Mayor McLallen requested Mr. Arroyo to distribute the summary to Council so the issue could be brought back when Council has had a chance to review the document. The issue will be put on a future agenda.
Mayor McLallen commented this is to permit BD’s Mongolian BBQ to have outdoor eating space on Market Street sidewalk. The City Attorney has drafted and enclosed a license agreement.
CM-99-07-183: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To Approve request for Mongolian BBQ License Agreement
Vote on 99-07-183: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Schmid Nays: None
CONSENT AGENDA REMOVALS FOR COUNCIL ACTION: (Consent Agenda items, which have been removed for discussion and/or action)
F. Approval of Resolution appointing JCK & Associates, Inc. as Novi’s Municipal Civil Engineer, Surveyor, Architect and Environmental Consultants
Member Lorenzo explained the reason the item was pulled is because she believes it is premature because the City has not received the Consultant Review Committee’s final report or JCK’s contract. All of these documents should be forwarded to Council together. Mr. Klaver agreed the issue should be tabled for a future Council meeting.
CM-99-07-184: Moved by Lorenzo, Seconded by Crawford, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To postpone the approval of resolution appointing JCK & Associates, Inc. as Novi’s Municipal Civil Engineer, Surveyor, Architect and Environmental Consultants
Vote on 99-07-184: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Assistant City Manager on the Building Authority
Member Lorenzo commented she wanted to be in the position to vote against this particular issue. With respect for Mr. Klaver, she appreciates all the work that has gone into the Senior Housing Proposal, but feels strongly that financial expertise needs to be on the Building Authority. For this reason she cannot vote for this particular position.
Mayor McLallen commented when this was discussed with the City Manager and put on the agenda, the rationale for this change, was that the position for Finance Director had not been filled. The concern was it would be someone who would be taking a lot of time to learn the City functions. However, the new Finance Director is familiar with the City. Mayor McLallen asked Mr. Kriewall if the rationale for bringing this forward originally is still valid? Mr. Kriewall commented Ms. Smith-Roy is going to be very busy with the position but may attend the meetings. Mr. Klaver has been with most of these projects from the beginning. Mayor ProTem Crawford said he agrees with Member Lorenzo and should continue with the original format. He would not vote to put the Assistant City Manager on the Authority.
Member Mutch asked about a transitional period with the Finance Director position still being there. Ms. Smith-Roy would meet with the Authority but have Mr. Klaver added to the committee. Can this happen? Mr. Kriewall said that would not be a good idea. Mayor ProTem Crawford said leave the Finance Director on the Authority and let the Assistant City Manager attend the meetings on an informal basis.
CM-99-07-185: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To leave the Building Authority with the City’s Finance Director being a part
Member Mutch wanted clarification that Mr. Kriewall was a member of the Building Authority. Mr. Kriewall said he is a member. Member Mutch wanted clarification that Mr. Klaver would continue to have the responsibility to attend and participate in the meetings. She was prepared to vote for him to be added under the circumstances previously described. Ms. Smith-Roy is going to have a lot of responsibilities in addition to this. Member Mutch does not want to lose Mr. Klaver’s expertise but if he does not have a vote he may have other priorities in terms of his time.
Vote on CM-99-07-185: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Member Schmid said he pulled the item. He is a member of the Consultant Review Committee and he was invited to view the proposed fee schedule. He made a recommendation to Council to compare what it is today and what it would be in the future. That did not get accomplished but some information that was available showed some significant increases in Woodland and Wetlands fees.
Member Schmid said looking at examples of what would happen under the new fee schedule, significant dollars has changed from the various consultants. He believes it should be sent back to Consultant Review Committee.
CM-99-07-186: Moved by Schmid, Seconded by Kramer, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To bring the Revised Resolution for the Development Review Fee Schedule go back to the Consultant Review Committee for further review
Vote on CM-99-07-186: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch
Schmid Nays: None
Member Mutch commented the Historic District Study Committee has completed everything up to and including the preliminary report. It is only called a preliminary report because a Public Hearing is required and once that it is held the preliminary report may be revised and then a final report is done which incorporates the comments from the Public Hearing. As required by state law, the report went to the Planning Commission in their last packet and a presentation has not been made yet but will be done in the future. A copy of the report goes to the state, the Historic Preservation Review Board and the state Historical Center. This committee does not have a budget. The report includes records of historic properties, a report by the architect hired by the committee and a report from the committee. Member Lorenzo asked if there would be a copy available at the library? Member Mutch mentioned a copy would be available at the library, newspaper and the City Clerk’s Office because of the expense to reproduce them, the committee is not funded.
MAYOR AND COUNCIL ISSUES
Member Lorenzo asked about the Ethic Sub-committee status report.
Member Schmid commented Mr. Watson is preparing a document to present to Council, which will outline the provisions and ethics of the community.
Mr. Kriewall commented Sprint is approaching the City to potentially locate a cell tower at the rear of the ice arena property. It appears to be a good location and Council actually suggested to Ameritech to look at that site but it did not work for them. It apparently works for Sprint and would like to know if the City is interested in meeting with them.
Member Mutch asked if Sprint has given an indication where the tower would be located. Mr. Kriewall explained it would be along the railroad tracks, in the southeast corner that backs up to an industrial park. Member Schmid commented there is residential development to the west. He is willing to listen but he is not in a position to absolutely say that Sprint can put one up. He is not happy with towers and questions every one that goes up including this one and will encourage homeowners to question them also.
Mr. Kriewall mentioned the Meadowbrook Road Ribbon Cutting Ceremony is tentatively set for August 5, 1999. It cannot be confirmed at this time because the second coat of asphalt has been started and it should be striped this week. The biggest problem at this time is the signage because of all construction in the Metro area. There are not enough traffic control signs available. The City is working with the Walled Lake School on Meadowbrook Road because they would like to host having Council at the same time as the ribbon cutting.
There being no further business before City Council, the meeting was adjourned at 12:39 p.m.
Kathleen S. McLallen Tonni L. Bartholomew
Date Approved: August 23, 1999