WEDNESDAY, MARCH 1, 1995 - 7:30 P.M.


(810) 347-0475



The meeting was called to order by Chairman Clark at 7:30 P.M.



ROLL CALL: Bonaventura (Present), Capello (Absent-Excused), Clark (Present), Hoadley (Present), Hodges (Present-arrived late), Lorenzo (Present), Mutch (Present), Taub (Absent-Excused), Weddington (Present)


(7) Present (2) Absent-Excused

(Capello & Taub)


A quorum being present, the meeting was in session.



ALSO PRESENT: Brandon Rogers - Planning Consultant

David Bluhm - Engineering Consultant

Rod Arroyo - Traffic Consultant

Dennis Watson - Assistant City Attorney

Linda Lemke - Landscape Architect

James R. Wahl - Director of Planning

Steve Cohen - Planning Clerk





The Planning Commission pledged allegiance to the Flag.





Member Lorenzo said she had two requests that evening. She said the first would be to request that they adhere to their Planning Commission presentation and public comments rules limiting the remarks to 10 minutes for each Petitioner and 3 minutes for members of the public due to their long Agenda.


Member Lorenzo then indicated she would like to make a motion.


It was,


Moved by Member Lorenzo

Seconded by Member Bonaventura



To suspend the Planning Commission rule that would interfere with adjournment of their meeting when Petitioner business was still pending on the Agenda.





Member Bonaventura asked for clarification from Member Lorenzo on what the motion means. Member Lorenzo said her motion means if it was midnight and the Commission chooses to adjourn, they don't have to stay until 1:00 PM if there were still items on the Agenda.


Chairman Clark said she was saying then that she wants to adjourn as opposed to continuing even though there were items still on the Agenda and she replied yes. A vote was then taken.


(voice vote) (5) Yeas (1) Nay-Hoadley





Member Bonaventura said under Matters for Discussion, he would like to discuss a letter from Fried, Watson and Bugbee dated February 17, 1995 and it was in relationship to the Master Plan. Chairman Clark said that would be Item #2 under Matters for Discussion.


It was,


Moved by Member Lorenzo

Seconded by Member Weddington



To approve the Agenda as amended.


(voice vote) Motion Carried Unanimously





Mr. Cohen indicated there were three letters regarding the Orchard Hills West Subdivision. He indicated the first letter was from Tony D. Marroni of 41608 Chattman Drive, Novi, dated February 26, 1995. He said the letter stated:



"Dear Mr. Taub,


As you are aware, the land located northwest of Chattman Drive and Meadowbrook Road is being considered for development. This is a DNR designated wetland.


It is important that you fully understand the implications and effects this will have on this area. Having been a long term resident of this area and having built two homes in Meadowbrook Lake, I am aware of the numerous problems associated with development of this area.


Flood Plain: This area acts as a retention basin for the Middle Rouge River. There is standing water to a depth of 2 feet. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources under the Flood Plain Regulatory Act, 1929 P.A. 245 as of March 8, 1984 stated the 100 year flood elevation is at 840 feet elevation. Parts of Chattman Drive and Meadowbrook Road are at 838 feet elevation. Much of proposed construction area is at 837 feet. Many nearby basement windows are below this elevation. By permitting construction and eliminating this natural retention area, you will be guaranteeing property damage and flooding.


Deforestation: Many of the existing trees are very old and irreplaceable. Trees are important not only for aesthetic value, but also they clean the air and help eliminate erosion. The soil of this area consists of peat and other "weak" soils which cannot support the weight of building. To build foundations, larger than normal areas must be excavated and refilled with rock, resulting in greater tree loss. Trillium is a protected plant by the State of Michigan. This area has both White and Red Trillium and Trout Lily on it.


Wildlife: This area provides one of the last remaining areas in Novi for habitation of such rare animals as beaver, deer, fox, pheasant heron, and more common animals such as skunks and wood chucks. Heron is a protected bird.


Meadowbrook Lake: Construction upstream of the lake will cause additional runoff of undesirable home chemicals such as lawn fertilizers and pesticides. These highly toxic chemicals will reduce oxygen in the lake, causing fish death and increased algae growth. By permitting construction in this area, you will be guaranteeing the increase of pollution of the lake, fish will die, water will smell. The flood plain and peat soil act as a filter for the lake.


Congestion and traffic: Meadowbrook Road is not designed to handle the traffic of another subdivision. We, the current residents, need a reprieve from the constant growth and increasing social demands put on this area.


This proposed subdivision is not in the best interest of the citizens of Novi. A much better use of this land would be for the city to purchase it and use it as a park. Since the soil is not suitable for building and much of it is in a flood plain, it has little commercial value. However, the city needs an East area park and should plan for green areas in its development.


This project will have a major effect on us. We homeowners and our children all use this area for walks and admire its beauty. Should you have any questions about this information, please do not hesitate to call. Better yet, call any of the agencies listed below. Development of this area will result in violation of numerous laws. These agencies may not even be aware of this potential threat.


Sincerely yours,


Tony D. Marroni"


Mr. Cohen indicated Mr. Marroni has listed six different agencies to contact at the bottom of his letter.


Mr. Cohen then indicated the next letter was from Glaine E. Stewart of 23605 W. LeBost, Novi, dated February 26, 1995, resident since April, 1976. He said the letter stated:


"Dear Planning Commission Members:


I would like to urge you to vote against the possibility of another subdivision being built south of 10 Mile and West of Meadowbrook. The area in question, I believe, is among other things a rain water retention area. Our ditches now fill to the top during medium to heavy rains and if this area is filled in, I believe our roads will be washed out. There are also deer and many other animals living in the area in question.


If this new subdivision is built, Meadowbrook will become more dangerous than it already is. At times it is almost impossible to enter Meadowbrook from Malott. Just last Friday about 5:00 PM, I had to sit through 6 lights at 10 Mile to turn west off of Meadowbrook.


I believe all building should be slowed way down in Novi. I can't understand why Novi is still allowing unlimited building when the roads are so busy it is becoming dangerous to get around town at times and we still have a form of water rationing in effect. It seems like someone should say enough is enough.


Thank you for allowing me to express my feelings on this issue even though I cannot attend this meeting in person.


Respectfully yours,


Glaine E. Stewart"


Mr. Cohen said the last letter was from Mr. John Love of 23680 Meadowbrook Road, and he wrote on the actual Public Hearing Notice the following:


"I think it is about time Novi stops building so many houses and strip malls and leave some land. The roads are so crowded. It's terrible the Planning Commission can't see the mess they are creating."





Mr. Ned Nagaar of 40760 Ladene in Novi was present. He said he had prepared a text which he would read to everyone and it could be available for record if they so desire. He indicated some of the Commissioners will remember him and his project, Blooming Day Child Care, which was brought before them on November 2, 1994. He then read his letter.


"Dear Sir:


Today I received lengthy minutes of the Commission's meeting of November 2, 1994 and have now fully realized as to what really happened that night. In the meantime, I have done enough research in the area of the various concerns and have collected data from various agencies and sources. Suffice to say that in about every category of concerns you raised, the data in his possession reflected views totally opposite of what was proposed and agreed that night.


For example, residential versus commercial usage - My research shows that over 90% of national franchise operations of child care is located on residential zoned properties. There was also parental preference of a facility located in a residential setting compared to a commercial set-up with parking lots and concrete and very little greenery around. Relative to declining property values - there has not been documented cases of property value decline at least looking from the City's assessed value history of adjoining properties.


Noise Level - decibel level created by certain number of children playing was no where close to noise level from moving traffic. It further becomes a moot point when you find out that the very people complaining may not be staying home because they were also at work and are away during the same time frame and so on and so forth, and he has enough information.


The reason he is here today is two-fold. One, I have accepted the decision of the Commission at least for now and being a very small middle-class business person, I do not have legal means to fight this big City Hall. But more importantly, assuming that the decision you took was fair and right, I have my own doubts and reservations and he wanted them to know that he fully intended to watch every action of this Commission relating to that piece of property in the future to make sure that you stay within the options you have elected for yourself, that is, not approving any special land use and hoping for a builder to build a small subdivision of 6-7 houses. Obviously based on the comment of that night, a child care center or a 7-Eleven or anything else will create a traffic gridlock at 9 Mile and Meadowbrook, is out of question.


I would like these comments to be part of today's Agenda. Thank you very much and good luck."


Chairman Clark then closed the first Audience Participation.





1. Approval of the December 21, 1994 Minutes.



2. Approval of the January 18, 1995 Minutes.



3. Approval of the February 1, 1995 Minutes.


It was,


Moved by Member Bonaventura

Seconded by Member Weddington



To approve the Consent Agenda.





Member Lorenzo indicated she had a few corrections to the Minutes of December 21, 1994 and January 18, 1995.


Member Lorenzo discussed the December 21, 1994 Minutes first. She referred to Page 32, fourth paragraph down where it stated, "Member Lorenzo said she understood and that was what she was looking for right now, a further explanation." She said explanation should be exploration.


Member Lorenzo said on Page 33, paragraph three, sixth sentence it stated, "use the retaining wall approach in order to minimize the wetland." She said the word disturbance should be added after wetland.


Member Lorenzo referred to Page 55, the first paragraph, fifth sentence, the "he" should be "she."


Member Lorenzo indicated regarding the January 18, 1995 Minutes she also had a few corrections.


Member Lorenzo referred to Page 56, the seventh paragraph, first sentence, and it stated, "Member Lorenzo said she would be willing for another postponement," and she said that sentence should read, "to make a motion for another postponement." She said the words to make a motion should be added.


There were no other corrections and a vote was taken on the first two Minutes:



1. Approval of Minutes of December 21, 1994 as corrected.

2. Approval of Minutes of January 18, 1995 as corrected.


(voice vote) Motion Carried Unanimously



3. Approval of February 1, 1995 Minutes. (No corrections made.)


(voice vote) (5) Yeas (1) Abstention





Member Hoadley said he could vote yes on the first two Minutes but would abstain on the last one of February 1st as he wasn't in attendance at that meeting.






1. Orchard Hills West Subdivision, SP94-09A - Property Located South of Ten Mile Road, Westerly of Meadowbrook Road for Possible Tentative Preliminary Plat Recommendation to City Council and Woodlands Permit Approval.


Mr. Jeffrey Brown, a partner with Berger Lewiston Associates, Limited Partnership-the Petitioner, was present. He indicated the site encompasses 14.658 acres and was bounded by Orchard Hills Elementary School to the north, the existing Orchard Hills Subdivision to the east, vacant land to the south, and the Novi Ridge Apartments to the west.


Mr. Brown said they were seeking to develop the land for a single family residential subdivision in accordance with the City's R-4 One-Family Residential Zoning District. He said the subdivision would contain 43 lots, each a minimum of 80 feet at the building line and each a minimum of 10,000 sq. ft.


Mr. Brown said the plat and Woodlands Permit Application have been recommended for approval by each of the City's various Consultants and accordingly they seek the Commission's recommendation for Tentative Preliminary Plat Approval in regard to the Preliminary Plat, as well as their approval of the Woodlands Permit Application. He said he would be happy to answer any questions.





Mr. Rogers reviewed his report of February 15th and stated he recommended approval of this single family residential subdivision. He indicated it was in an R-4 District and only a portion of the property was being proposed for a subdivision and the bottom two-thirds of the property that extends out to Meadowbrook Road, was not included. He said if that was going to happen, they would need a lot split at some time before the Final Preliminary Plat was approved.


Mr. Rogers said relative to the screening requirements adjacent to Orchard Ridge Apartments, if anyone has driven down there, there was an existing brick wall and towards the end, it becomes a cyclone fence, and that would be reviewed for sufficiency in screening a multiple family area from a single family district.


Mr. Rogers said the Woodlands Application Permit was pending and his recommendation of approval was subject to five conditions, which were: (1) The engineer's signature on his seal. (2) Revision of side yard setback dimensional standard in Notes. He said they now have a total of side yards of 25 feet and they call it out as 10 and 10. (3) Establishment of a parcel split and Sidwell number for area "Not Included." (4) Review of screening requirements along west side of site. (5) Approval by City's Street Naming Committee of proposed Golden Lane street name. He indicated that was the north/south road on the westerly end of the site, and the other two streets Borchart Drive and Aspen Drive, were continuations of streets in the Orchard Hills Subdivision.


Mr. Bluhm indicated he has also reviewed the Tentative Preliminary Plat and the Applicant proposes extension of water and sewer into the site from the west, stubs that were left to the property line. He said the Applicant was also proposing a storm sewer to collect the storm water and his plans indicate discharge to a ditch which exists along the eastern part of the subdivision, basically behind Lot 26.


Mr. Bluhm indicated storm water would not be detained as the creek river through there has the capacity to handle the flows. He said there was a ditch that would carry the storm water into the creek and all the easements were there, so there was not a problem.


Mr. Bluhm noted that they have had some recent conversations with the Applicant regarding the need for a sedimentation basin to collect sedimentation from the subdivision and that would likely be necessary at the outlet point. He said some concerns were raised about the area to provide the sedimentation basin. He said at that time, they brought up options as to alternate methods to direct the storm water to the creek.


Mr. Bluhm said one of those that he felt merited some future consideration was to provide a storm sewer between Lots 18 and 19 to the existing detention basin and if they look at the southwest corner of the property, there was an existing detention basin which basically detains the flow from the apartment to the west.


Mr. Bluhm said there was the potential that that could be used to pass the water from this subdivision through to provide sedimentation and then outlet into the creek from there, thereby reducing the needs to disturb other areas.


Mr. Bluhm said there were some practical difficulties from the fact that that was a private easement, and they would have to get approval from the owner of that property, but he would like to have them explore that as the Final plans begin to unfold here. He said he had no further comments and recommended engineering feasibility.


Mr. Arroyo said he has also reviewed the Tentative Preliminary Plat proposal. He said access to this proposed subdivision was from two existing subdivision streets to the east, Borchart and Aspen Drive. He said from those internal streets, they would then gain access to either Meadowbrook Road or Ten Mile from the subdivision streets that were existing. He said there would be no new proposed access roads to either Meadowbrook or Ten Mile Road.


Mr. Arroyo said the road layout that was proposed in this proposed subdivision appears to be acceptable and appears to meet the Design and Construction Standards in terms of traffic flows with roads being 28 feet wide within a 60 foot right-of-way. He stated he recommended approval of the Tentative Preliminary Plat.


Chairman Clark indicated they have a letter from Daniel W. Roy, Captain, Novi Fire Department, that indicates this plan has been reviewed and approval was recommended.


Mr. Chris Pargoff was present and he indicated the particular parcel in question has a regulated woodlands on the southern boundary of the parcel and they have indicated that they were going to remove a certain number of trees that would be bonded for replanting. He noted his recommendation would be that it be replanted throughout the lots on the subdivision.


Mr. Pargoff said there were approximately 30 trees that he has identified as being much closer to the building envelopes and that may be effected by the deposition of back-fill soil from the digging of the basements, and those were the ones identified in his letter.


Mr. Pargoff said also the planting detail provided by the developer would have to be revised to conform to the new standard as set forth by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. He said once those conditions were met, he did recommend approval.


Ms. Lemke was present and reviewed her letter of February 22, 1995. She said as Mr. Pargoff stated, there were woodlands on this site in the southern portion of the woodlands, and she referred to the drawing and stated it was the area indicated by the dark green line, which was the regulated woodland area and was approximately 4.5 acres.


Ms. Lemke said this was quite a distance away from the Middle Rouge River which was indicated on Ms. Tepatti's plan. She pointed out the Middle Rouge River and also the site. She indicated the Middle Rouge River was off the Applicant's property and she pointed out the Applicant's entire property line. She also pointed out the area that a lot of the letters have addressed that night.


Ms. Lemke referred to the woodlands plan and pointed out the regulated woods in the dark green line. She said the light green area were the upland woodlands that were being saved and again the dark green woodlands were off the site, but they were all part of this one system, which she pointed out. She indicated they were removing as part of the wetland/woodlands area, basically the back of the lots.


Ms. Lemke said the remainder of the trees on this site were scattered areas. She said the site was very hilly which was why a lot of the trees were proposed to be removed for the lots. She said they were not a complete woodlands area and there were a lot of trail systems that have been put through the woodlands and a lot of openings in the woodlands.


Ms. Lemke said there were 30 trees off the site but there were a lot of trees up there that were not part of the regulated woodlands.


Ms. Lemke put up a plan for everyone to see and stated the first plan that came in had significant intrusion into that lower area that was part of the wooded wetland that continues on toward the Middle Rouge River and basically it had a road going right through it and connected to the road in the easterly adjacent subdivision, Sycamore Drive, and then another road that went through and connected to the adjacent subdivision, which was Borchart Drive.


Ms. Lemke said they could all see the difference now in this alternative plan that has been proposed. She pointed out there was one road coming in from Aspen Drive, coming down Golden Lane, turning basically where the hill was located out on the site. She noted the highest point on the site was at the cul-de-sac area. She also pointed out how they turn and go up and avoid the wooded wetland, which was part of the original property but now has been pulled out of that property. She said then they come over to Borchart Drive and connect with the Borchart Drive.


Ms. Lemke said so the alternative, which she asked for in woodlands, was a superior alternative.


Ms. Lemke said she had some reservations as far as Final Engineering and that was why they would see that one of her four conditions was that she review the Final Engineering plans for grading and drainage impacts on the trees and woodland areas to be preserved.


Ms. Lemke said she didn't have any reservations about the alternative as this was definitely a better alternative than what was proposed previously, and the replacement trees were about 163 trees and those again were scattered trees on the site with the exception of some around the units. She indicated she would like to review those again really carefully so they could save as many as they could around the units.


Ms. Lemke said she was recommending approval with her four conditions listed in her letter. She said she would be happy to answer any questions.


Ms. Tepatti reviewed her letter and stated there was a large forested wetland complex in the southern end of the site and as Ms. Lemke stated, that wetland has basically been removed from the parcel at this time and it was part of a very large extensive system that follows the Rouge River and was in her opinion, a very high quality wetland with some very poorly drained soils. She said a person probably wouldn't be able to walk through the area as it was extremely mucky in the spring and at this time of year.


Ms. Tepatti said the Wetlands Permit for this project was considered a minor use permit and the only impact that they were proposing was a storm water discharge as Mr. Bluhm mentioned in the eastern end of the site. She said the Applicant's original plan had a road crossing that went straight through the middle of this wetland and the original wetland boundary was shown differently and she stated they met in the field and evaluated the wetland and that was the resulting boundary, and therefore, the Applicant revised his plan to completely avoid any impacts to the wetland by the roadway or home construction.


Ms. Tepatti said there were some buffers within the rear yards of the lots and those would be reviewed as the house plans were developed to determine if there were going to be any impacts to the buffers.


Ms. Tepatti said again as Mr. Bluhm mentioned, the storm water discharge was going to be evaluated during the future engineering plans and there would be some type of sedimentation basin water quality treatment required before discharge to the river and there was a definite swale that extends to the river so they don't expect there to be any additional water going to the forested or emergent wetlands on this site, so they don't expect any impacts in that way.


Ms. Tepatti said so her department has no problem with the plan pending future engineering review and looking at the issue for the storm water discharge and basin.


Chairman Clark said he would take comments from the Audience now and as the Commission had indicated earlier, they had asked that members of the Audience who wish to address the Commission on this item that evening, confine their remarks to three minutes since they have a large Agenda.





Mr. Ron Knox, President of Orchard Hills Homeowners Association, was present. He indicated he was a resident of 41860 Quince and he has had concerns from his membership. He said first of all, they didn't receive a notice in the mail until Saturday, so they had very little time to prepare and it was also in the Novi News on Thursday.


Mr. Knox said there was nothing mentioned about when they build the homes, how they were going to bring in the heavy equipment. He indicated their streets were blacktop and haven't been repaved in over 20 years and they were scheduled for repaving in 1999 and they were afraid that the construction of this was going to affect their quality of life and their streets.


Mr. Knox said also with the 43 homes, they were adding about 200 vehicle passages up those two streets and he has asked in the past that Borchart, Tamara and Woodland Creek have a four-way stop sign and with that many more vehicles and bus stops, the residents feel that was necessary and should be included.


Mr. Knox said they mentioned the water release and what they have now in that area was the homes on Sycamore Drive were flooded in the spring because there was a ditch back there that hasn't been dredged in over 20 years from what the neighbors tell him, besides the river, and the fear was that when they put those homes in there and the water was going to be released in a concentrated manner into the Rouge, they would get a larger and faster current build-up and have a more concentrated wetland. He said also there was no mention of the values of the homes.


Chairman Clark indicated they would ask the Petitioner to address that matter shortly.


Mr. James Karlavage of 41976 Quince Street was present and he indicated this was the first Commission meeting he has ever attended. He said he was happy to say that he was a proud resident of Novi since 1989 and he was very satisfied the way the City runs and operates and the City took care of a few problems he did have previously.


Mr. Karlavage stated that unfortunately, this subdivision was an extension on their subdivision Orchard Hills. He said where he lives he borders the school. He said he didn't have a problem with progress especially if the homes would be worth a higher value as that could only mean more value to their existing homes.


Mr. Karlavage said he was looking at the Master Plan on a couple of items and he didn't know if it was just preliminary for the Master Plan, but he was reading a few things about roadways and separation of through-local traffic, and he felt that on Borchart Street, as in front of his house, they were handling somewhere from 200-400 vehicles a day.


Mr. Karlavage said he was almost hit himself as was his son in his car because they live on Quince on that ramp and they had the road repaired and now it sounds like a ski run for the people dropping off their children and picking up their children, and there was also a daycare there.


Mr. Karlavage said basically on Quince and Ten Mile he never plans on leaving his house from the hours of 5:00-6:30 PM because it would be impossible to make a left turn off of Quince and he would have to go right and go out of his way if he wanted to go to the Town Center or to the shopping center and would have to use alternate routes.


Mr. Karlavage said as far as leaving out through Meadowbrook, that would be almost another impossible situation during the hours he has mentioned because of the rush hour traffic.


Mr. Karlavage said with those 43 homes, he figured 2 cars per each household and they would be interjecting another 90 automobiles in the subdivision and he didn't believe the roads and the traffic situation there was capable of handling this in a safe and orderly manner and that was what it says here and it says through/from local traffic as to permit efficient safe traffic flow.


Mr. Karlavage said another item he wanted to bring up too was the value of the homes and then it also says here, neighborhood identity. He said regarding their neighborhood identity, they have open channels and have no sidewalks or ranch homes and their properties were a bit larger than the 80 x 125 foot lots and as they come in here with the 80 x 100 foot lots, he would assume that they would have to be two-story structures to even make it worthwhile to build in this City for the price of the land.


Mr. Karlavage said regarding neighborhood identity, he felt they would drastically reduce the identity of the neighborhood that they have and he didn't think they were going to plan on putting sidewalks in the older part and they would have to cover up the open channels and put in drains and put in sidewalks and he didn't think they would do that, so he didn't know whether the neighborhood identity would be there at all.


Mr. Karlavage said the only other comment he had was regarding the road conditions and they were deteriorating and they have been pretty much put on the back burner. He said the subdivisions in the Meadowbrook and Ten Mile area, in his estimation, were one of the first subdivisions in this great City and they seem to get by-passed for the newer more updated subdivisions and he didn't want to see the older subs get left behind and forgot about. He then thanked the Commission for their time and he hoped they would take into consideration what the residents have to say.


Ms. Mary Bohme of 41911 Aspen, Orchard Hills Subdivision, was present. She indicated she has been a resident of Novi for ten years. She indicated she had several concerns, the first being in their packet on Page 1 of Mr. Rogers' February 15th letter, the last paragraph states concerning berms, "However, where the proposed subdivision abuts any portion of the cyclone fence, the landscaped berm will be required. North of the proposed subdivision is the Orchard Hills Elementary School. No screening berm is required since the school's parking lot is north of the School's buildings."


Ms. Bohme said that was an incorrect statement because all the parking lots there were east of the building, so looking at the plat, it looks like Plats 1 and 2 and possible 3 would abut that parking lot directly.


Ms. Bohme stated her main concern was the Orchard Hills Elementary students who walk to school as there were no sidewalks and most of the children walk up a small path. She said she lived right on the dead-end and she lived next to proposed Lot 43. She stated the children walk up that path everyday, which avoids them walking down Aspen or walking down Borchart and going to Tamara and then walking up Tamara to Quince, where all their bus traffic was and where all the parents who drive their children to school were. She said there were millions of cars there all morning long and the children would have to go that way in order to get to school or walk to school in someone's backyard in the new subdivision.


Ms. Bohme said another concern she had was the wetlands and she asked would Orchard Hills have the same or similar drainage problems that Briarwood was having now and was continuing to have and as has been mentioned in the past, the ditches get full when it rains and the river overflows and they do get a lot of water problems and they would not like to see those similar problems happen at Orchard Hills Subdivision.


Ms. Bohme said also there was a natural run-off that was next to her house that runs north and south and it was between the old subdivision and the proposed new subdivision and she asked what was going to happen to that natural run-off and would sewers be put in and she felt that needs to be looked into.


Ms. Bohme said it has also been mentioned that they were concerned about the sizes of the homes and would they be similar or consistent with the homes that they have now at Orchard Hills.


A gentleman spoke next (did not give name or address) and indicated he agreed with all the people who have spoken thus far. He said he felt this proposal would create a great amount of damage and depreciate the value of people's homes in this area and subdivision. He said he hasn't seen anyone on the Commission or the presenters that have come up here who actually live in that subdivision. He said he lived on Silvery Lane which was bordering up against this new proposed area.


This gentleman stated they would gridlock this subdivision by putting those additional houses in and he felt Mr. Knox has a precise figure of about 200 cars additional in there, and the roads would not support it.


This gentleman indicated he had a friend with him that evening who lives on Borchart and he wasn't going to be able to get in and out of his house as it was hard for him to do so now with the traffic that they have. He felt this Commission has to realize that they were getting to the point where they were over-building this area and he moved in this area about 18 years ago and one of the big attractions to the area was the wooded area that he could go back into and that was the reason why he bought his house.


This gentleman indicated they have wild animals and deer back there and the kids and people both enjoy it. He felt they were going to dig up trees that were doing fine where they were at and he was getting real disappointed with the DNR and he didn't think they were sticking up for the residents anymore. He said he had to plead to the Commission why invest money into building parks as they have a natural park back there and they all enjoy it and like to go out there in their evenings, walk with their dogs and they have something there that was great so why disturb it.


This gentleman said the streets were not going to support the big machines coming in and they were going to disturb the land fill. He said the people who have water problems now were going to drown no matter how much care they take when they start knocking down those natural berms and disturbing the lay of the land. He said his neighbors have put hundreds of dollars in their homes to waterproof their basements so they stay above water.


This gentleman felt they were going to disturb that and flood those people out and they were not helping the people who live there and from his standpoint, he hoped the Commission would take concern. He said he enjoyed his house and they were going to drive him out of it.


Mr. Fred Beyea of 23615 Silvery Lane Novi was present. He said he would support everything that has been brought up that night. He said he bought his home about ten years ago on Silvery Lane and it was at the bottom of the hill and his neighbor who was just up speaking, lives above him and his backyard comes toward the house and the street comes down towards his house. He said he loves his house but it really shouldn't have been built there.


Mr. Beyea said it was a wetland area and he was concerned about more people going in there because water would find a place to go. He said in one of the letters from JCK of February 23, 1995, it was mentioned about the wetland being mostly forested with very poorly drained soils subject to frequent flooding. He said this was a truism and there was a ditch behind his house and behind the gentleman's house who just spoke.


Mr. Beyea indicated that ditch behind his yard was a large sanitary pipe and if that gets plugged up in the spring, his whole yard gets flooded because all that water was filled up from the rains.


Mr. Beyea said when it rains, it wasn't so much what happens immediately next door to him, but it was what happened maybe a half mile up the hill, so when that lady came up there that night and spoke about where the location was going to be away from the wetlands, she was probably right, but that water was not going to stay up there and it would come down.


Mr. Beyea said right next to him was the flood proposed protected area and he was concerned about the future of that area as well because he wasn't sure where they were proposing to protect it, how they were going to protect it, what they were going to do with it, but right now he was concerned about the traffic, flooding, and grading and the reports that he has received that were addressed to the City, really do not answer those questions, at least not for him.


Mr. Beyea felt the plan was better than the original but it still does not satisfy his concerns and he felt some of the concerns of the people up there. He said another matter was trying to get out of his subdivision that night onto Ten Mile Road which was very difficult and from their Master Plan that he just picked up that evening, the daily traffic volumes on Ten Mile Road were from 15,000-20,000 cars per day and he asked what was that going to do to alleviate the existing situation.


A gentleman by the name of Terry of 41626 Chattman was present. He indicated he lived on the north side of Chattman, east of the creek or the Middle Rouge River and he didn't know if he was correct in assuming that what he heard was there would be water added to the Middle Rouge River and if he was correct in assuming that there would be additional water flow into the Middle Rouge River, he was concerned that the increased water level was not only going to effect his property and the added erosion that would be added to what he was already experiencing, but what was going to happen to the level of Meadowbrook Lake.


Terry said he had a situation where he has experienced some erosion problems currently due to increased water flow when there was snow melt-off, rains, etc., and the City bears no responsibility for the damage to the land after the increased water flow. He said additionally, there was a bridge that crossed the creek on Chattman Drive that was not being maintained. He said increased water flow coming through that creek area would do more damage to the bridge.


Terry said he would like to know if he was responsible since the City has told him that he was responsible for maintenance of the creek on his property and was he going to be responsible for the additional maintenance that was going to come upon him due to the increased water flow.


Terry said he was a new resident to Novi and this area to him was phenomenal and the woods were very appealing and they were the most beautiful part of Meadowbrook Lake and the adjoining subdivisions and he would hate to see those go.


Mr. Nastasi of 41940 Quince was present. He said he would address the same problem discussed already which was the traffic. He said in the morning when he leaves for work, he has to wait for the people there who were dropping off their children to get out of his own driveway and he has the same problem when he gets home and he could not get back into his driveway because the people were flying down from the school because they were in a hurry to get home and then in the evening, he and his wife would like to walk their dogs and since there were no sidewalks and all they have were the roads, it was like a battle ground.


Mr. Nastasi said if they plan on putting another 90 cars into their subdivision, they can't walk as it was now and what were they going to do with another 90 cars and another group of people who were flying through the subdivision.


Ms. Vickey Rose of 41548 Woodland Creek was present. She indicated she was on the corner of Sycamore and Woodland Creek and she was a new resident and moved in, in June of last year and she said she searched far and wide to arrive here at Novi and she loved it, but she laughed to her husband on one of those first heavy rains in the summer that they had because she understood why the street was named Woodland Creek because there was rain water down near the corner where she lived.


Ms. Rose believed her house was at one of the lower points of the subdivision and she was very concerned about potential flooding. She would beg the Commission to please examine every opportunity to prevent any such things to all the homeowners in the area. She said she has other objections that have already been mentioned, but the potential flooding in particular was a very big concern.


Ms. Rose said there was standing water in their ditches and she tries to maintain them and she has contacted the City to do whatever they could to keep them up to whatever standards they need to operate properly.


Ms. Rose said the concern she would like to convey to each of them was to prevent any potential damage by water.


Mr. John Burkhardt of 41455 Chattman in Meadowbrook Lake, was present. He said he wanted to raise both a procedural concern and also add to some of the information that has been provided.


Mr. Burkhardt felt the Commission would have been disappointed if anyone was with him last Sunday as he talked with his neighbors and they were reacting to the one page notice that they received describing this action and this meeting. He said he was discouraged because the general approach that was taken was once again, the residents were put on very short notice to respond to something that feels like they were under siege.


Mr. Burkhardt said their neighborhood has been before the Commission many times and they probably also sense that they feel as if the cards were stacked against them whenever they bring issues to them.


Mr. Burkhardt said there was a great deal of talk about the fact that they might as well go and get themselves a lawyer because that was where it was going to end up anyhow and that discouraged him a great deal. He felt it was a waste of resources and he didn't think they needed a lawyer to understand what was being said here that evening and they don't need Planning Consultants to know that it rains in the spring and that when it does rain, the water goes some place.


Mr. Burkhardt said he would like them to consider the process by which actions of this sort come to the resident's attention. He said if all of their Planning Consultants have been working on this issue for some time as has been obvious by the fact that they have reviewed plans and spent time with the developer and issued reports, it seems to him that the residents could have been given information in time to respond along with that.


Mr. Burkhardt said the City could have been more reasonable and the resident's response to the change could have been more measured if they were coming along at the same time they were, in their understanding of the project. He said he seriously hoped that they would reflect on not only how long in advance they learn about those things, but the general relationship between their procedures and the interests of citizens as those things were considered in the future.


Mr. Burkhardt said substantively, he felt Mr. Tony Marroni's letter did an excellent job of laying out some of the concerns that were felt by both existing subdivisions, but they don't need lawyers to tell them that in a few weeks the spring rains would come and the ditches in Meadowbrook Lake would fill and would stay filled for a couple of weeks and that the swale that runs along side of his property and the woodlands and the lake would become a creek.


Mr. Burkhardt said they don't need to know that when he moved into his home he had to get special insurance to guard against the floods and he fought that but he was very glad that someone persevered because he has had to make claims twice in the seven years he has been there because the water does come in and it does cause damage.


Mr. Burkhardt said they don't need the opinion of a botanist to know that that was a fragile area back there and all a person has to do was to walk out there on a spring evening and realize that something very special exists which would be threatened by this.


Mr. Burkhardt said they don't need to be an environmentalist to know that the real threat to Meadowbrook Lake and to the whole Rouge River system was not increasing the industrialization but increasing urbanization. He said when those folks move into this new subdivision, they were going to want to put chemicals on their lawn just like everyone else does and those things were going to run off into the lake and hasten its death.


Mr. Burkhardt said it was almost incomprehensible to those residents who live there that the City would consider building back there. He said he really hoped that they would hold themselves to a standard of reasonableness, both in their procedures and to also give the residents enough time to respond and don't make them change their schedules in three days' notice to be here in force, and then also respond to some of those issues that have been raised that evening. He said he would hate to think that they constantly have to be on guard to protect their interests when all they were trying to do was maintain a dialogue with the people who represent them.


Mr. Steve Barnes of 41841 Aspen, one of the new access roads proposed, was present. He said he was wondering if he could get some questions answered at this point from the developer in terms of the type of development proposed.


Mr. Barnes said a particular concern he had was approximately how long they were basing the sale and the completion of the development.


Mr. Brown replied he would like to use this opportunity to discuss the type of homes and the prices, etc. He said what they were projecting were houses ranging in size from 2,200 sq. ft. to approximately 2,500 sq. ft. and homes like that would cost in today's dollars about $200,000 to $225,000. He said regarding how long it would take to sell those homes, it would depend on where the market was at the time and it could be anywhere from a year to two years.


Mr. Brown said they would be two-story homes substantially of brick and certainly in keeping with the standards set by the existing Orchard Hills Subdivision.


Mr. Barnes felt that answered one of the concerns he had because when a person gets into a home of 2,000-2,500 sq. ft., they would start thinking about seeing somewhere between 8-10 cement truckloads per house, times 43, times 2 trips, which translates to approximately 700 cement trucks going down two streets in his subdivision and that was not including the block, the lumber, the brick, the drywall, etc.


Mr. Barnes said all of those vehicles would be multiple axle vehicles traveling down Aspen Drive and traveling down Borchart Drive. He said he wondered if someone could tell him what 700 cement trucks were going to do to a road that was 20 years old and how quick it would happen.


Mr. Barnes said he didn't see anything in any of the write-ups about what was going to happen to their roads. He felt if those vehicles were to be traveling through the woods, the City would probably have 10 committees up there that would be talking about the trees that were going to be cut down or destroyed.


Mr. Barnes asked what about the 25-50 children that were in their subdivision that were 8 years old, 4 years old, 12 years old, riding their bikes down their streets because Orchard Hills has no sidewalks and they now have at least 1500 to 2000 trucks over 1 1/2 to 2 years coming through their subdivision and no one has addressed the biggest resource they have, which was their children.


Mr. Barnes said everyone was concerned about a tree or a woodchuck, but what about his family and the families of his neighbors and no one has addressed that at all, and he felt that needs to be considered.


Ms. Joan Mackniesh of 41585 Woodland Creek was present. She said although the residents have been asked not to reiterate things that people have already stated, she felt strongly about the fact that if there had not been a death in her family, she would not have received any notice, and she did own the property and she found it extremely interesting that all the other information concerning payment of taxes reaches her but there was no notice to her other than a coincidental talking to a friend in the Meadowbrook Lake Subdivision.


Ms. Mackniesh said she has lived on both sides of this woods so she was in a unique position and she has lived on Chattman for 20 years and also the end of Woodland Creek for approximately 6 years and she just wanted to support everyone in terms of what they have said and she just wanted to go on record that there has not been adequate preparation for them to respond to those issues.


Ms. Nancy Tituskin of 41810 Aspen was present. She just wanted to also say that the traffic was nuts in that subdivision and the people that drive down there to drop off their kids, drive too fast and they don't live there and they don't care. She also wanted to say that she lived in one of the higher points of the subdivision and their backyard was a flooded mess every time it rains, and they were at a high point in the subdivision so she didn't know what kind of problems those people deal with that live in the lower point.


Ms. Tituskin said she was also very upset that they didn't get any notice until just a few days ago. She said they were not just dealing with people's backyards and houses, etc., but they were dealing with their futures and they just moved in a few years ago and they want to plan a family and now she felt she had to consider selling her house and moving because of this and it was just not fair.


Ms. Tituskin said she felt the City should have some consideration about this and think about their lives and not just the trees and the street and the water, but to think about the residents' lives that they plan and the money and work they have put into their homes to keep them nice. She said they try to be good citizens and pay their taxes and do everything they were suppose to and then they get this thrown at them at the last minute and they couldn't even make any decisions as to what they have to do.


Ms. Tituskin said she was begging the Commission to please consider their families and their futures when they were deciding this issue.


Mr. Brian Shea of 41921 Quince was present. He indicated they have lived there for about ten years. He said as past president of their subdivision, he thought the Commission might be interested to know that they have a prohibition against two-story dwellings in their subdivision covenants. He said he didn't know how the City Ordinances honor those things, but that was a fact. He then said he wanted to voice his opinion against this proposal as well.


Mr. Phil Superfisky of 24811 Christina Lane was present. He said he received his notice on Saturday. He said his notice and the notice in the paper identified a substantially larger piece of property than 14 acres. He said he was curious as to what they were going to do with the rest of the property and would that be dedicated over as a park or was there future development planned because a lot of the comments that night were really relative to that property.


Mr. Superfisky said he just saw the large map of about 50 acres and he didn't realize they were only talking about the 14 acres up in the corner, but he would like to know what was going to happen with the rest of that property.


Ms. Lynn Kocan of 23088 Ennishore Drive was present. She said she couldn't help but ask Mr. Watson wasn't there a requirement in the Ordinance that states that notice has to be received a minimum of five days before a public hearing and that has to be binding and a notice in the paper was not good enough.


Mr. Watson said he didn't think there was, and he felt the requirement was that the notice be sent within that period of time, but he would check the Ordinance and let her know during the meeting.


There being no further Audience Participation, Chairman Clark closed the Public Hearing.





Member Lorenzo said she had several questions and concerns regarding the drainage and the woodlands and the wetlands, which all seem integrated in that sense.


Member Lorenzo said if she was understanding it correctly, the storm water discharge before it gets to the Rouge River was going via a creek.


Mr. Bluhm said yes. He said if they look at the back of Lot 26 there was an end section and just beyond that, there was a ditch that he believed probably drains some of the water that drains from the existing development there. He said they were intending to use that to drain further to the south to the actual Rouge River, which he would guess at about 200 feet from that.


Member Lorenzo asked if there were two separate discharges and was one a storm sewer discharge, and Mr. Bluhm said no. He said there was one discharge that was discharging to the storm sewer and if they look at where the existing detention basin was on the plan, they could see a discharge point, but all it was doing was picking up some drains and it was not a discharge for the subdivision water and not intended to be.


Member Lorenzo said she was confused. She asked regarding the discharge into the wetland, where does that come in and was it the creek into a wetland into the Rouge River or was the creek part of the wetland.


Ms. Tepatti then explained that the discharge was proposed to go into an existing swale, which was separated from the western wetland, a large wetland, by a real small piece of upland and some trees, so the swale itself was shown on the plan and discharges directly into the river through more existing wetlands.


Member Lorenzo said then the creek falls into a swale, and Ms. Tepatti said no, it was not a creek and the discharge goes straight into what she called a swale or ditch and there was no creek and then it discharges directly to the Rouge.


Member Lorenzo asked where were the wetlands in association with this and Ms. Tepatti said the wetlands were directly west of the swale or ditch, and then also to the south and this ditch cuts a little bit below the existing wetland and the wetland wraps around the river basically.


Member Lorenzo said regarding the minor use permit for discharge into the wetland, where was that discharge into the wetland going to take place and Ms. Tepatti said it was the discharge that was going into the swale and she considered that to be a discharge to the wetland.


Member Lorenzo said so it was a discharge into a swale that was associated with a wetland and Ms. Tepatti said yes.


Member Lorenzo then said in terms of the additional storm water that was going into this whole system, do they know at this point what type of impact this would have on the forested area, the trees involved there, and has there been any evaluation of that impact.


Mr. Bluhm said the developer has not performed a detailed analysis because that was typically not done at this point in time, and there would be an impact directly into the ditch area and if the water could be totally confined to the ditch and discharged directly to the creek itself or to the Rouge River itself, then the actual storm event flood water should be very minimum in its effect.


Mr. Bluhm said so the key here was to try and get that discharge as close to the Rouge River as they could without allowing it to spread out into that wetland. He said that area was very low and flat and the closer they could get the water to the Rouge before they allow it to spread out, the better they would be all the way around and that would be one of the things they would be looking for as they progress with the plans.


Member Lorenzo said so it hasn't been determined exactly how much of an impact it may have on the existing trees and Mr. Bluhm said if they confine the water to the ditch, there would be no impact other than the trees directly associated with the ditch. Member Lorenzo said if that was the case.


Mr. Bluhm said that was one thing that they were going to be requiring of them, that they confine that water to the ditch area.


Member Lorenzo said in terms of detention, was there any on site detention being accounted for in this subdivision and Mr. Bluhm said no not in this area and the existing lake detention regional basin was in line and the easements up stream were all in place.


Mr. Bluhm indicated one of the gentleman who spoke earlier spoke of some problems with the culvert crossings at one of the public roadways and that may want to be taken up with the DPW to make sure that those were left open to a certain degree and he was correct that some of the maintenance was a responsibility of the homeowners too.


Member Lorenzo said so all of this water was going to be generally discharging into this whole wetland/Rouge River complex and Mr. Bluhm said yes that was correct and Member Lorenzo asked undetained and Mr. Bluhm replied that was correct.


Member Lorenzo asked if they have determined at this point whether this was going to increase existing flooding problems for those people and Mr. Bluhm said no nothing has been performed as far as an analysis of the incremental increase that they would see and when they consider the amount of water that was going through the Rouge River and the additional water that would be generated by this subdivision, it was a very minor amount and the Rouge River carries an incredible amount of water.


Mr. Bluhm said obviously there was some concerns with having the water go through this system and go the creek itself and it appears that it does back up and it would be virtually impossible to determine exactly whether they were going to get a 3" increase in the water elevation due to this or a 2" increase. He said he could almost be assured that it would be very minimal, but the goal in this was getting the water to the Rouge River so that it could be discharged properly to the Regional Basin downstream.


Member Lorenzo said while she appreciated his position as an engineer, he also has to appreciate her position because she has been in this position, and while a couple of inches of water to someone who was not involved in this situation may seem minimal, a couple of inches of water to a homeowner who was trying to maintain their property, was significant.


Member Lorenzo said if this causes any increase in existing flooding problems, she couldn't see how they legally could allow that to happen.


Member Lorenzo felt there was going to need to be some way of controlling this water in this subdivision to ensure that those people who were already burdened with flooding problems, would not be burdened with an increase because of other development in the area, and maybe they bought into that problem and that may be a pre-existing condition on their property, but they shouldn't be burdened with an increase because of another development.


Member Lorenzo said if the Commission does make a positive recommendation to the City Council, she would like that to be looked at very closely and seriously because she could not support such a project.


Member Lorenzo said additionally in terms of the flood plain elevation, she noticed on the site plan that the contour elevations were as of 1990. She asked were the base flood elevations going to increase due to all this additional runoff and Mr. Bluhm said no the base flood elevations would not increase and Member Lorenzo said there would be no increase in the flood plain then, and Mr. Bluhm indicated that according to all the regulations which define the actual flood plain elevation or the base flood elevation, this kind of an impact, the discharge associated with this project, would not meet the criteria that would indicate an increase in the base water surface elevation.


Member Lorenzo said so that flood plain line was going to remain exactly as it was and Mr. Bluhm said correct.


Member Lorenzo said on Lot 20 was she correct in seeing a very small portion of a flood plain line, and Mr. Bluhm said yes it was at the very southeastern tip of the lot. He said he believed that was under the jurisdiction of the DNR and would have to be encompassed by a flood plain easement on the Final plat.


Member Lorenzo said regarding ground water/sump pumps, where would they be discharging and Mr. Bluhm said the Ordinance requires them to discharge to the storm sewers and then ultimately to the area or to the Rouge River.


Member Lorenzo said so what they were saying then was in essence, it was both the surface drainage and the ground water drainage that would be dumping into this forested wetland.


Mr. Bluhm said they couldn't say ground water and they really have to establish where the ground water elevation was. Member Lorenzo said sump pump drainage then.


Mr. Bluhm said as was in some other subdivisions, a good deal of those lots were going to be quite a bit higher than the existing wetland and his suspicion was that a good deal of them would be walk-outs that were adjacent to the wetland.


Mr. Bluhm said the lowest floor in those cases were typically going to be above the wetland elevation which would obviously be above the ground water elevation, but it was a valid concern and it was something that they were going to have to look at a little further as this progresses.


Member Lorenzo said if it was determined that they were going to have an impact, then the Council may want to consider requiring some kind of detention basins.


Mr. Bluhm said that was always a consideration and there were really two alternatives here. He said if it couldn't be assured that the water first of all, when directed, was as close as possible to the Rouge River and couldn't be defined in the Rouge River, then the other alternative was to request detention on site and there were some options for them available there too, but those were the two possibilities.


Member Lorenzo then asked Mr. Rogers about Lot 20. She said if that lot was changed so that the small corner portion of the flood plain was not actually on that lot, would they still meet the square footage requirements. Mr. Rogers said all of the lots have at least 10,000 sq. ft. and it was interesting that Lot 20 was not so indicated in square footage but Lot 19 next to it has 10,000 sq. ft.


Member Lorenzo said Lot 20 appears to her to be a little larger and Mr. Rogers said it was and they all meet the 10,000 sq. ft.


Mr. Rogers said he would add that in his report, in the last paragraph, since there was no public water supply and since some of those lots were below 12,000 sq. ft., whatever they do eventually to recommend this, there was a requirement that they make it a condition that before the approval of the Final Plat, that there would be indeed a water supply system for those lots that were under 12,000 sq. ft., and that was an Oakland County Health Department rule.


Mr. Rogers added that Lot 20 was larger than 10,000 sq. ft. Member Lorenzo asked if it appeared to him that they could cut that small corner off and Mr. Rogers said yes very easily. Member Lorenzo said she didn't see any reason to burden a potential homeowner with a flood plain easement if it was unnecessary.


Mr. Rogers said Lot 21 next to it has 10,587 sq. ft., so they probably have about an 11,000 sq. ft. lot there.


Member Lorenzo said she had two other questions and one was in terms of the questions that the homeowners asked. She asked was it true that all of the construction vehicles would be accessing through those two roads and she asked Mr. Arroyo that question.


Mr. Arroyo said yes, as far as he knows, but he has not seen any other proposals to bring any type of road in and that could be a question for the applicant, but as far as he could tell from looking at the plans, they would have to come in from the existing subdivision streets.


Member Lorenzo asked from his prospective, was that a feasible alternative in terms of an alternate access/a temporary road connection.


Mr. Arroyo said it would have to be compared with what alternatives might be out there as to the impact on the roadways themselves and that would probably be best addressed by Mr. Bluhm in terms of the capability from an engineering standpoint and were the roads going to be able to handle the construction traffic.


Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Arroyo about the placement of stop signs and would that be a DPS responsibility and Mr. Arroyo said yes, Mr. Bruce Jerome, the DPW superintendent, would be the person responsible for reviewing any requests for stop sign placement, particular in an existing subdivision.


Member Lorenzo said so possibly they could recommend to Council that they have Mr. Jerome or Mr. Nowicki evaluate that situation in terms of additional stop signs and Mr. Arroyo said yes.


Mr. Bluhm said there was no doubt that as the roads deteriorate out in the existing subdivision, the addition of the heavy equipment was really going to accelerate that. He said in addition, they would have the mud and debris that would be kicked up by vehicles that were coming in to develop the area. He said it was a good idea to have them consider alternatives, either possibly to the west or to the north to see if they could provide some other temporary construction routing, at least while the bulk of the subdivision development was going on.


Member Weddington said she agreed with most of Member Lorenzo's concerns. She said she had another question for Mr. Arroyo about the visibility of traffic maneuvering along the corner where Golden Lane and Borchart Drive run into each other there, and she understood that was a high point in elevation and she asked was there any visibility concern there with that road turning at such an angle.


Mr. Arroyo said that was typically something that was reviewed at the time that the engineering drawings were submitted and the details in terms of the road profile were provided. He said it was not typically evaluated now, but if the Commission would like that addressed, he was sure they could try to at least give a preliminary analysis and JCK would likely have some comments regarding that too. He said but typically the engineering drawings were what would provide the details in order to evaluate that and certainly it would have to meet City standards in terms of site distance.


Member Weddington said she also had concerns about the management of the water in this area and they have not done a very good job in the past of managing the water and she would be very uncomfortable approving this at this point until she had some assurance that the water could be managed and would not have any adverse impact on the conditions. She said as Member Lorenzo said, one or two or three inches wasn't a lot in the large scheme of things, but when that was in a person's house or basement or even in their yard, it was a major concern and she knows that from personal experience.


Member Weddington said she shared the concerns about the traffic volume and she felt they were trying to shoe-horn another subdivision into an already congested, very densely populated area.


Member Bonaventura said to Mr. Rogers that a comment made by one of the residents was about the berm at the north part of the site up against the school property and a portion of that does come up against the school parking lot, and Mr. Rogers said when he walked that area, it was very difficult to precisely locate those proposed lots which would abut the parking area at the east side of school building, however, if Lot 1, 2, etc., abut this area, then a 4 1/2 foot screening/landscaped berm would be required per Ordinance.


Mr. Rogers then said if the applicant seeks a waiver of the berm in lieu of a 4 1/2 foot brick-on-brick wall, the applicant has to come to the Planning Commission for that waiver. He said he made a note on the plan to flag that issue when it comes in.


Mr. Rogers said it raises a question since those proposed lots were 116 to 122 feet deep. Ms. Lemke could easily figure out what a 4 1/2 foot berm requires on a 3 to 1 slope and Ms. Lemke replied 28 feet with a 2 foot crown.


Member Bonaventura said that would take up quite a bit of space and Mr. Rogers said that would be a part of the rear yard for certain. Member Bonaventura asked if it would be the same for the west side up against the RM-1 and Mr. Rogers said yes, and for the most part, there was at least a 4 1/2 foot brick wall and it has been there a number of years and there was a driveway just to the west of that wall and it was not shown on this plan and it comes down a considerable distance, but then the cyclone fence kicks in and that was not a screening requirement and they would have to address the berm at that location.


Member Bonaventura asked the Petitioner has he contacted or made an attempt to contact the Homeowners Association of Orchard Hills and Mr. Brown replied he petitioned the City as directed by the Subdivision Ordinance.


Member Bonaventura asked Mr. Arroyo if he was correct in assuming that this development of 43 homes would generate 430 daily trips per day and Mr. Arroyo said approximately that was true.


Member Bonaventura said concerning the property split, it hasn't happened yet and Mr. Rogers said no it hasn't, but the City Assessment Department would definitely want to see that started.


Mr. Rogers said they should keep in mind that if this was platted, each of those lots would have its own sidwell but the part that was called, Not Included, which was easily 65% or 70% of the site, could be retained as a separate sidwell number in the future but right now it appears to be one big parcel.


Member Bonaventura said he had a lot of concerns about this project and his main concern was the 430 daily trips generated by 43 homes. He said it seems like the east side was getting clobbered lately with the final build-out of an already congested area. He said the problems they have on Ten Mile were well-known and as one person has mentioned, it was not just this side of town.


Member Bonaventura said in Novi they basically were held captive between 5:30 and 6:30 in the evening in their homes because if they want to run up to the store or the Town Center, they might as well wait until 7:30 as it would take them just as long.


Member Bonaventura said he has a problem with that because they were talking the welfare of their citizens and talking about existing residents and he has a lot of respect for the existing residents and he wished this Petitioner would have had some respect for the existing residents, because a respectful thing to do to a new neighbor, especially when you want to start off on the right foot, would have been to obviously petition the City, which was his right, but also to contact the existing neighborhood and go over the future plans.


Member Bonaventura said this project has a lot to do with what was going in on Ten mile and he personally didn't think that this neighborhood could handle 430 trips per day and he didn't think Ten Mile could handle one more car per day.


Member Bonaventura then said he would like to ask this Planning Commission to make an attempt, and he would be saying this a lot in the future to be part of the solution and not part of the problem.


Member Bonaventura then said he would make a motion:


It was,


Moved by Member Bonaventura

Seconded by Member Weddington



To send a negative recommendation to City Council for Orchard Hills West Subdivision, SP94-09A.





Member Hoadley said to Mr. Bluhm that it would appear on the drainage, if he was correct in reading the elevations, that this land naturally drains from Lots 8 and 9 down toward Lots 17 and 18 and was he correct. Mr. Bluhm said yes he was generally correct and it was northwest to southeast.


Member Hoadley asked if there was any natural drainage from the center of the subdivision towards the east that would impact the adjacent subdivision. Mr. Bluhm said currently yes and as he stated, it goes northwest to southeast, and those areas that exist right now, do drain towards the lots that would abut this but most of that was picked up in swales and the ditch and then discharged south.


Member Hoadley said regarding the preliminary as it was currently engineered, was there going to be any impact on the adjacent lots and Mr. Bluhm said no, they would be required to pick their storm water up and discharge it to the south.


Member Hoadley said he was saying there was no possible impact and Mr. Bluhm said there was none that was allowed by Ordinance and they would have to make sure that all that water was picked up.


Member Hoadley asked if Mr. Bluhm was also saying that he felt there was no need for a detention basin and Mr. Bluhm said it was his opinion that there was not, as long as assurances could be made that the water could be directed as close to the creek as possible to the Rouge River because detention was provided downstream.


Member Hoadley said from an engineering standpoint, how did Mr. Bluhm intend to filter out the affluents that would be picked up, such as road tars, fertilizers, etc., that they wouldn't impact the creek and the ecological system.


Mr. Bluhm indicated the sedimentation basin was going to pick up some of that and the natural swales would pick up the bulk of whatever else would be required and they have pretty good methods of collecting those areas and reducing those affluents.


Member Hoadley asked where was the sedimentation basin going to be and Mr. Bluhm said they would have to provide the sedimentation basin at the outlet which would be at the back of Lot 26 under the current plan.


Member Hoadley said it was not on the plan and Mr. Bluhm said it was not on the plan at this time, but the DNR typically was laying out the requirements for sedimentation basins and the City currently has no Ordinance that requires sedimentation basins so the developer was not required to show it.


Member Hoadley asked Mr. Rogers was there any alternative access/ egress to this and it looks like it was landlocked to him so would there be another access to the main thoroughfare without going through the subdivision.


Mr. Rogers said he has looked at the plan and it would mean traversing the school property at the edge of Orchard Ridge Apartments and they couldn't cut into the Orchard Ridge driveway, and it was not that well-paved a driveway, but it would mean slicing off temporarily a construction route on the west edge of the school playground site.


Mr. Rogers said he didn't know for sure whether the school owns the parcel to the north that abuts Ten Mile but it strikes him that they may, but that was the only location and they couldn't go down into Meadowbrook Lake Subdivision and they couldn't cross the Rouge River that easily.


Mr. Rogers said the only place would be along the west edge up to Ten Mile Road and they would have to get the approval of the School District.


Member Hoadley said so there was no available land for another access road and Mr. Rogers said that was the only one.


Member Hoadley asked the Petitioner how would he intend to mitigate the questions that the Audience has presented in regard to the storm water, road impact, deterioration of their roads, etc.


Mr. Brown said to answer the question that was asked of Mr. Rogers, they own the land north of the school, the ten acre parcel fronting Ten Mile Road, and if there was any way by which they could bring a construction road south from Ten Mile Road to Orchard Hills West, he would certainly do so.


Member Hoadley asked about a permanent access road and Mr. Brown said if there was room and the City was willing to approve that, it would be something they would be willing to discuss.


Member Hoadley said Mr. Brown has heard all the concerns and obviously there was a major problem here and 407 odd trips was definitely going to impact their subdivision. He then said he would be supporting Member Bonaventura's recommendation.


Member Hoadley felt this could be done better if it has to be done at all and he realized that the Petitioner has a right to develop his property if feasible, but he didn't think it was feasible under the plan he brought to the Commission that evening.


Member Hoadley said he certainly did not feel they should run that many trucks and/or cars through someone else's subdivision that has its limitations with no sidewalks, etc. He said he didn't hear him say he would address the resident's concern about the sidewalk and their safety and health but possibly another access road from a different location would eliminate a lot of their concerns.


Member Hoadley said he was also concerned about the water and he would suspect that they would be looking at a detention basin and if they don't own that land due south where it shows on the plat- the potential detention basin, he asked was there any possibility that they could acquire that land. Mr. Brown said he wasn't sure which land he was speaking of.


Member Hoadley explained it was the land directly south of Lots 18, 19 and 20. Mr. Brown said that was part of the existing parcel and he owned that. He said if the City would like them to build a detention pond in that area, that was something they would look at.


Member Mutch said in the area that was not included, she knows that the southern part of that toward Meadowbrook Road was heavily wooded. She asked if those woods extend all the way up to the property line in a way that would preclude them from having a temporary roadway to access the site for construction.


Mr. Brown indicated that may be a possibility. He said they haven't explored the different options for access. Member Mutch asked if it was wooded all the way up to the property line and Ms. Lemke indicated it was and Member Mutch said then it doesn't matter if Mr. Brown was willing or not.


Mr. Brown said if the City would prefer, he could still put the road in and it was the City's decision as to how they would like to bring in an alternate route.


Member Mutch said it would appear to her being somewhat familiar with this area, that there was no way that he could access on the west side of the school property if safety was a concern with children just within a subdivision and there was no way the school district acting responsibly would allow construction traffic on the perimeter of their play ground.


Member Mutch said obviously it couldn't go through the apartment driveway for the same reason that Mr. Rogers alluded to. She felt the access to the site itself was a major problem. She said she had a little more faith in the problems concerning discharge and drainage only because she knows that they have residents here who would demand that the Ordinances be met and that the requirements be met.


Member Mutch said so if it were to proceed, she wouldn't have as much of a problem with that, but she didn't see any reason of accessing their site for the purpose of construction. She said if they could take it and complete it and put it there, that was another story, but that would not happen either.


Member Mutch said someone had mentioned that Orchard Hills Subdivision had restrictions on the size of buildings and they often get residents coming and saying that they live in single level homes and don't want two-story homes backing up to them, but it appears to her, looking at the plan they submitted, that Lots 1, 43, 27 and 26 were the only lots that would abut any existing residential in Orchard Hills and those would abut side to side.


Member Mutch said she wasn't sure about Lot 1 which was up on Aspen, but for Lots 43 and 27, it would appear that their east perimeter would abut what must be the rear of the lots that were on Silvery Lane and the same for Lot 26.


Member Mutch discussed the concern about two-story homes in this area and this was not an area that anyone in Orchard Hills has to go through themselves as this was at the end of their subdivision. She felt those four homes probably would not be that much of a problem and most homes do not have windows on the side if the only view to the side was their neighbor's back yard, so she didn't think that was much of a concern as it might first appear before they actually see how the lots were configured.


Member Mutch felt the Public Notice may be misleading for people when they are near a single piece of property like this and they get the Public Notice, and she wasn't saying that Mr. Brown was misleading them. She just felt in general that it was misleading when a person sees this enormous area outlined in the public notice and they think someone was coming in and building a subdivision that was going to entirely fill that area. She said if most of the area that they were familiar with was treed or under water, of course, they were going to have major concerns that people might be proposing to build there.


Member Mutch said that was obviously not the case here. She felt some good questions have been raised with regard to the drainage that would occur just because some of it would be paved over and some of it would have construction on it which was obviously not there right now, and that has to go somewhere, and she felt Mr. Bluhm has answered some of those questions.


Member Mutch said with regard to notice in general, she felt some good points were made. She said the Consultants have a required amount of time in order to review plans and they have to be submitted so they have time not only to review them, but to review the Ordinances that must be met and to prepare written comments for the Commission.


Member Mutch said the Commission doesn't have as much time as a person might think to review them themselves, and they receive their packets on Fridays so if the residents received notice on Friday or Saturday, the Commission had about as much notice. She said on the other hand, the Planning Commission had the packet and anyone who got notice on Friday or Saturday probably was not able to get the actual information in terms of a site plan or the back-up material until Monday.


Member Mutch said a good point was made that there was not a lot of time for those who might be directly effected to respond in a way that was focused and factual and helpful to them.


Member Mutch felt one thing to point out was that this was a public hearing, a public hearing where what was on the Agenda was possible and she emphasized possible, a tentative, preliminary site plan recommendation for site plan approval. She said the whole purpose of a public hearing was to get the information.


Member Mutch said a number of people came forward and spoke to the Commission as if the Commission brought this project forward or that the Planing Department had somehow encouraged it and brought it forward. She said this was, as the Petitioner pointed out, a plan that the developer has every right to come forward with and of course, the Commission has every right to accept or reject what he was proposing.


Member Mutch said there was nothing automatic about the fact that it was on the Agenda, and the only thing automatic was the Petitioner has a right to have the Commission hear what he has to say, and the Commission in turn has a right to hear what everyone has to say about it. She said so this was in a way, not just an opportunity to express opinions, but it was a fact-finding process.

Member Mutch said they hear from the Consultants but they also hear from those residents who live in the area and know what the differences might be between a map that was prepared in 1990 and what was out there today in their backyards, sideyards, etc. She felt it was important that they come, but she felt it was almost as important that they understand that there was no decision made before the residents get there and that their input helps in that decision-making process.


Member Mutch felt that night was one of the more productive public hearings that she has been a party to because the comments have been focused and she has been able to make a list of more than a dozen specific concerns, some of which have been answered by Consultants and some of which were not. She felt so at this particular point, some of the questions that have not been answered were not answered because it was still preliminary and that those were questions that were answered much later in the process if it moves forward.


Member Mutch said relative to the other questions, they have received some answers too and the answers were not answers that would lead her to support it, so people were to be commended for participating, but this was not a done deal before people get here, so regarding the criticism from some speakers that the Commission was doing this to them, the Commission wasn't doing anything yet until they have a vote.


Member Hoadley called the question but Chairman Clark indicated Member Lorenzo had raised her hand for a few more comments and he would allow her to speak first.


Member Lorenzo said she had a question and then some comments. She said to Mr. Watson in regard to the administrative wetland permit, does the Commission have discretion to add a condition in terms of permanent sedimentation basins.


Mr. Watson said actually as to that permit, they don't, but they might make that a part of their recommendation as to the plat itself, but the actual approval of the wetlands permit was done administratively. He said they might suggest to the people making that administrative decision, that they look into that issue as well.


Member Lorenzo said she would appreciate it very much if they would do whatever they need to do to try to make that a permanent basin.


Member Lorenzo then indicated she would not be supporting the motion, even though she very strongly shared Member Bonaventura's and Hoadley's concerns about traffic and she had some very deep concerns about the engineering and the subdivision drainage.


Member Lorenzo didn't think that they could deny solely on the basis that it creates additional traffic because any type of development was going to create additional traffic and even a public park creates additional traffic.


Member Lorenzo said this was zoned for R-4 Single Family homes and that was what was being proposed and they meet all of the square footage requirements. She said in terms of a subdivision being located in this area, she felt they seem to conform with all of their basic Ordinance requirements for that and she didn't think they could deny solely on the basis that it creates traffic, and she felt that sometimes those types of comments, even when made by some Commissioners could be misleading because they have limited control and the Commission doesn't have absolute control as a Planning Commission or as a City Council to just say no, to just deny and they don't have that type of control.


Member Lorenzo said so it was very misleading to the public to make anyone think that they do, because they don't, regardless if they personally like it or not, or regardless if the public personally likes it or not.


Member Lorenzo said in terms of the engineering concerns she has, she was aware that this was preliminary and the detailed engineering was normally done between now and Final engineering, so she was not going to support the motion for those reasons, even though she had very strong concerns about the various elements of this project.


Chairman Clark said to Mr. Watson that there was a question directed to him relative to notice and he asked if he would answer that question.



Mr. Watson said the question raised was whether the notice sent to neighboring property owners has to be received at least five days in advance of the meeting or whether it has to be sent within that time period. He said the wording of the Ordinance was that the notice shall be sent not less than five days before the day of the meeting. He said in other words, it doesn't necessarily have to be received, but it does have to be sent within that time period.


Mr. Watson said Mr. Cohen has indicated that the notices were mailed on February 23rd, last Thursday, so it would have been six days in advance.


Chairman Clark first reminded the Commission that a yes vote was a vote to send a negative recommendation to City Council on this matter.


Mr. Brown asked to make one brief comment. He said he was very sympathetic to the number of the issues that were raised by the abutting homeowners. He said nevertheless, the State Plat Act and the City's Subdivision Ordinance were very specific in their requirements and they have met all those requirements in addition to getting the recommendations of approval from all the City's Departments and Consultants and therefore, they feel as a matter of law, they were entitled to this approval.


Member Bonaventura said as a point of order, he knows the motion has been called, but the Chairman gave the Petitioner 30 seconds so he wondered if the Chairman would allow him 30 seconds for discussion and Chairman Clark said he would only indicate that he has refrained from comments himself, even though he didn't have the opportunity on the first round to speak because the question had been called, but he did allow Member Lorenzo to speak.


Member Hoadley said he would withdraw his calling the question.


Mr. Watson pointed out that even though a question was called, if there was any Commissioner that still desires to debate the issue, that it would require a second to the motion to call and a two-thirds vote to cut off debate.


Chairman Clark then asked if there was a second to call the question and there was none and Member Hoadley withdrew his calling the question.


Member Bonaventura said there were comments made by a previous Commissioner about commenting on the 430 trips generated and the 430 trips generated might be deceptive as far as being able to send a negative recommendation to Council. He said in his mind, the extra 430 daily trips has to do with the health, safety and welfare of the existing community and that was one of the things he was suppose to play close attention to as a Planning Commissioner.


Member Bonaventura said the problems on Ten Mile were well known and there were discussions on correcting those problems, and the City's infrastructure was inefficient and he personally believed that this had to do with the health, safety and welfare of this community.


Member Bonaventura said also as far as the lack of planning as far as a construction route, he personally could not send a recommendation to City Council on this plan that hasn't been well thought out in that regard.


Chairman Clark then said he would place his comments on the record very briefly. He said the Petitioner was correct that he owns the property and if he complies with the laws in the Ordinances, he has the right to develop the property. He said their function here, since this was a proposed preliminary plat, was simply to make a recommendation to the City Council, so the members of the Audience should understand that the Commission does not have the final say or the last word in this regard and this was still a matter that Council would ultimately decide, although they do look to the Commission for some direction because they do sit here as a Planning Commission.


Chairman Clark said he shared all the concerns raised by members of the Commission. He said he was concerned with the traffic and the water and how the runoff would be dealt with and how the water would be retained so he could not support this project.


Chairman Clark said they have one situation in this community that was well-known with Briarwood and he felt one Briarwood in any community was one too many. He said he was only speaking for himself, but he felt the Petitioner has a flavor for the concerns of the other members as well.


Member Mutch said she had another comment regarding the addition of traffic. She said if they look at the Master Plan, particularly in the southeast part of the City, they would see that there was very little yet to be developed land and what was left was primarily single family residential. She said if the primary reason for not developing this particular area, was because of the addition of traffic to the roadways, then someone ought to be looking at rezoning it so they were not misleading property owners, those who currently own it and those who might potentially buy it, from thinking that they could develop it as single family residential under the current zoning.


Member Mutch said this was an R-4 zoning with a proposed development that would meet R-3 requirements from what she saw, which puts it at a less dense level and they need to figure out what kind of traffic was permissible or preferable right on down to 0 traffic if they was what they want and then work to rezone it, whether that happens at this end or it happens from the community.


Member Mutch felt but to constantly have people coming in wanting to do something with their property, whether it was a single property owner with one small lot or a large proposed subdivision and saying they couldn't add traffic to the roads that they have planned to accommodate that traffic, makes no sense to her.


Member Mutch said if the traffic was a problem, then they should rezone what was yet to be developed so they have some legal reason for denying those things.


Member Mutch said she had some concerns that she has already expressed, but it seems to her that if they were going to take it down to no traffic and have it a nature preserve, then the community at large and not just the surrounding neighborhoods, ought to be lobbying the City Council to purchase the property and keep it that way and that would take it off the tax rolls. She said it would also keep it in a way that the City was not paying for road improvements and other things that people were saying were a problem, and it certainly would not adversely effect the health and safety of the surrounding community. A vote was then taken.



ROLL CALL VOTE: Clark (Yes), Hoadley (Yes), Hodges (No), Lorenzo (No), Mutch (Yes), Weddington (Yes), Bonaventura (Yes)


(5) Yeas (2) Nays





Chairman Clark said this was a negative recommendation to City Council.


Mr. Watson indicated on the Agenda was Woodlands Permit Approval so he would suggest a motion regarding that. Chairman Clark asked for a motion to postpone action on the Woodlands Permit request at this time.


It was,


Moved by Member Hodges

Seconded by Member Lorenzo



To postpone action on the Woodlands Permit request at this time.


(voice vote) Motion Carried Unanimously


The Commission then took a ten minute break.





There was none so Chairman Clark closed the Audience Participation.



2. Mini-U-Storage, SP95-10 - Property located north of Grand River Avenue, westerly of Haggerty Road for Possible Special Land Use, Preliminary Site Plan, and Woodlands Permit Approval.


Mr. Matt Quinn, attorney appearing on behalf of the Petitioner, was present. He said with him that evening was Mr. Bob Bradley who was the Vice-President of the Dahn Corporation and also present was Mr. Rick Hofses from Ziemet-Wozniak, engineers on the project, who would be addressing the Commission also.



Mr. Quinn indicated the Dahn Corporation was a national business involved in management and construction of commercial properties and in the Detroit area, they have 3-4 current mini-storage facilities in the area and they were also currently involved in looking for other sites in the Detroit Metropolitan area.


Mr. Quinn indicated this site that they have found in Novi was the subject of this public hearing and it was on Grand River west of Haggerty Road and sits in an industrial area zoned I-1 on all the sides and it sits next to the Intech project. He said in the rear of the project, it abuts another mini-warehouse storage facility that has its entrance out on Haggerty Road.


Mr. Quinn indicated they were there requesting Special Land Use Approval, Preliminary Site Plan Approval and Woodlands Permit Approval. He said in regards to the site, the site was 4.98 acres altogether, and, of course on a Special Land Use, the first thing they would note was the requirement for a mini-warehouse facility to have 5 acres and they acknowledge and would request that when the Commission approves this Special Land Use, that they make it subject to the ZBA granting the variance for that two hundredths of an acre and they would proceed to the ZBA to obtain that.


Mr. Quinn said regarding the Special Land Use, as far as the Consultants' letters were concerned, they meet all the requirements of the Special Land Use. He said some of the after-thought ideas of Mr. Rogers has been subsequently addressed by Mr. Bradley's letter to him, so he believed that for the Special Land Use, everything was now met and they would expect and request approval subject to the Consultants' letters.


Mr. Quinn said as far as the Preliminary Site Plan was concerned, he believed they have a favorable recommendation from all the Consultants and their engineer would have a few comments regarding some of the Consultants' specifications and requirements after they have had the opportunity to address this Commission.


Mr. Quinn said regarding the Woodlands Permit, he believed that on this site, the total site was going to be used and once they give the right-of-way back to the County and they have the setback, they end up with 4.54 acres of useable space. He said they were going to use the entire site and they were going to build ten buildings there for warehouse facilities and pave the rest of the site, therefore, basically all of the trees were going to come down.


Mr. Quinn said they have the ability to replace more than 100 trees around the site and they were proposing that they pay the required amount into the City's Tree Fund. He said so as far as the Woodlands Permit was concerned, they believe that there was no other alternative other than to use the site and they would be using the site and they would replace and then they would pay.


Mr. Quinn then said he would be available for any questions.





Mr. Rogers reviewed his letter of February 20, 1995 and he indicated that since this was the type of use that was a Tier 3, Section 1903 type of use, it requires Special Land Use approval by this Planning Commission and there was also a provision that this use not abut any residential and he indicated it doesn't.


Mr. Rogers said the acreage requirement was called out in his report and they would need a variance from the ZBA. He said it has access to a major thoroughfare and the setbacks, the lot coverage, the length of buildings, and all the dimensional things have been complied with. He said the three items of written statement that he called out, Item 6, 8 and 11 in the first list of conditions, have been answered to his satisfaction by a letter from Mr. Bradley of the Dahn Corporation dated February 27, 1995.



Mr. Rogers said the architectural style of the building was a gable roof and the mix of the facade materials appear to be suitable, but would be reviewed in greater detail at the time of Final site plan review.


Mr. Rogers said regarding the general standards on traffic impact he would defer to Mr. Arroyo. He said the utility services were at the site and the Fire and Police services were a short distance away.


Mr. Rogers said regarding the impact on environmental assets or features, obviously the significant one that night was the Woodlands Permit and this was a total removal except along Grand River and maybe on the perimeter where some trees were being retained he believed.



Mr. Rogers noted this site goes back to American Self-Storage another self-storage facility that fronts onto Haggerty Road that this Commission reviewed 8-9 years.


Mr. Rogers indicated he recommended Special Land Use approval subject to the site size deficiency being reviewed and the written statements which have been submitted.


Mr. Rogers said regarding the site plan, there were a number of items some minor that should be added to the Preliminary site plan or the Final site plan if it comes in. He said in the conceptual architectural drawings, the orientation of the different facades, the west side and south side, got twisted a bit and the north arrow was not in the correct direction, so Item 2 and 3 could be resolved at the time of Final site plan review.


Mr. Rogers said they want to see the 2 foot contours, not spot elevations extended further around the site and of course on the site plan itself they require the seal and signature of Mr. Hofses or the engineer of record.


Mr. Rogers said all setbacks were complied with and regarding the parking, while individual spaces were not shown on the site plan, it was customary on their 3-4 other self-mini warehouse facilities, to have those parking spaces at the door bays of each unit and he has talked with Mr. Hofses and they would be shown and could be shown to meet the off-street parking requirements.


Mr. Rogers said there was some visitor parking and handicapped parking up near the Manager's quarters. He said the marginal access road does kick in on the west part of the frontage on Grand River and it comes back to Grand River having been extended in front of Intech of Novi and Novi Technology Center, but at this point on the Master Plan of Land Use, the marginal access road only takes about a third of that frontage and space could be provided for it.


Mr. Rogers indicated he recommended Preliminary site plan approval subject to the Special Land Use being approved, the missing application data being provided, and the documentation of the parking bays along the edges of the mini-warehouse buildings and also that the building facade orientations be properly oriented and also subject to the requirements of a Woodlands Permit.


Mr. Bluhm said he has also reviewed the Preliminary site plan and the applicant proposes a single access drive from Grand River to the site and the applicant was also proposing sanitary and water leads to the Manager's Unit from Grand River. He said in addition, a water main would be extended from the west to service the buildings internally for fire protection with fire hydrants primarily.


Mr. Bluhm said the applicant was proposing storm sewers through the entire site and there was quite a bit of impervious area with the parking lots and then the buildings themselves that would generate quite a bit of storm water from the site. He said that was to be discharged to Grand River where a fairly large storm sewer would collect that and disperse it on the north side of Grand River to the east to Haggerty Road into the Ingersol Drain.


Mr. Bluhm said the Ingersol Drain at this point in time has capacity problems, surface flow capacity problems, so they were requesting that the developer detain on site preferably in the parking areas for the development.


Mr. Bluhm said one additional comment they have on the plan was that the Fire Department at Final may want to look at water mains of 12" diameter for industrial zoned areas. He said beyond that, the plan demonstrates engineering feasibility and he was recommending approval.


Mr. Arroyo said he has also reviewed the Preliminary site plan and they have a few minor comments and one deals with the driveway location on Grand River and insuring some consistency between several of the drawings showing a direct alignment with the existing office access road on the south side of Grand River. He said the comment that Mr. Rogers has made regarding the marginal access road, they have echoed that indicating that there may actually be a need for a slight modification to show that going further to the east.


Mr. Arroyo said his final comment deals with the Fire Department and he suggested that if they were looking for access around the entire site, there could be some minor modifications in the locations of the buildings to provide for circulation but he has noticed in the review that they have not identified that as an issue so they must be satisfied, so he was recommending approval subject to the minor items they have identified being resolved on the Final site plan.


Chairman Clark indicated that they do have a letter from the City of Novi Fire Department under the signature of Daniel W. Roy, Captain indicating this plan has been reviewed and approval was recommended with the following seven conditions: (1) To provide a fire hydrant at the entrance from Grand River Avenue. (2) Provide fire hydrants to meet the 300' maximum spacing for fire hydrants in commercial developments. Show the following fire department notes on all future plans. (3) All roads are to be paved prior to construction above the foundation. (4) All weather access roads capable of supporting 25 tons are to be provided for fire apparatus prior to construction above the foundation. (5) All watermains and fire hydrants are to be installed and be in service prior to construction above the foundation. (6) The fire hydrants shall be protected by a minimum (6) inch curb, guard posts made of 4 inch steel pipe, 8 feet in length installed vertically to a depth of 4 feet and the pipe be filled with concrete. Or, any other acceptable method may be used. (7) Fire prevention practice during construction shall be in accordance with the adopted Building Code and Fire Prevention Code.


Mr. Chris Pargoff was present and he indicated the fact that the entire site was going to be used was an indication that the regulated woodlands would all be removed. He said there were several items in Ms. Lemke's letter that need to be addressed, however, there were some other items that since the entire site would be cleared, may be waived, in particular, the types of ground cover and shrubs that currently exist since none of them would be in existence at the end of the project if the Planning Commission chooses to accept the Preliminary Plat.


Mr. Pargoff said he would then defer to Ms. Lemke on the details she wishes to have included in the Woodlands Plan.


Ms. Lemke said this site was approximately half wooded and she pointed out the area of woodlands and stated the trees that were in this portion of the site southerly towards Grand River were basically Elm and then they have a woodlands that was of good quality, not wonderful and it was the remains of the woodlands that encompass the American Self Storage to the north. She said basically it consists of Maple and Oak and was probably about a medium age stand of trees but it was isolated.


Ms. Lemke said her February 20, 1995 letter requires more information which Mr. Pargoff briefly discussed. She said really the major concern here was that no alternatives have been presented per Section 37-29, 4A, which was the major requirement of this Ordinance.


Ms. Lemke felt Mr. Quinn summarized it by saying that no alternatives were planned by them, but still the Ordinance requires them to explore alternatives, but that doesn't preclude them from coming in and saying there was no other way they could do it, and that this was their only alternative. She said but in her opinion, there were always other alternatives and certainly removing some of those buildings would be an alternative to preserve the woodlands.


Ms. Lemke said in summary, she was not recommending approval of this plan for a Woodlands Permit.





Mr. Rick Hofses, engineer for the project was present. He said he received the Consultant's letters in the last week or so and he didn't think there wasn't anything in there that they were not able to address in the Final engineering plans, but there were a few that he would like to point out right now.


Mr. Hofses said in Mr. Rogers' letter he talked about the requirement for 91 parking spaces and they were confident that they could get those, and in fact, on the plan on the right, there were 9 parking spaces adjacent to each of those buildings indicated by the red marks and that would continue throughout the site and using this method they could get 102 spaces on the site and that was with only parking along one side of the building and if more spaces were required, they would stripe them off on the other side. He said they do not feel that parking was a problem.


Mr. Hofses said regarding the retention issue raised by JCK's comments, he was confident that they could provide the retention required in the parking and in the pipes on the site. He said regarding the water main size, he would adjust as required by the Fire Department and the City's engineers. He said regarding the drive alignment opposite, which was brought up by Mr. Arroyo, they would do a field check on that and the intention was to line the drives up directly and they would field measure the drive across the way and they would align directly across from it.


Mr. Hofses said hydrants would be provided according to the requirements of the Fire Department. He said in summary, nothing has been brought up regarding engineering items that they feel they could not meet in the final engineering.


Mr. Hofses said Mr. Bradley of the Dahn Corporation was present and would like to address the Commission.


Mr. Bradley said he was the Executive Vice-President of the company and has been with the company for 17 years and they were the owners and operators of self-storage properties in 8 states and more specifically 5 in the Detroit metro area. He said he didn't want to rehash everything that has been said, however, he would like to address the one issue regarding the attempt to meet the criteria for the woodlands application.


Mr. Bradley said they did have Leighton Engineering do a preliminary study of some of the options that they may have to help mitigate the loss of some of the trees. He said the intention was to go around the perimeter and there was a 10 foot landscape strip around the entire property and where possible, they would utilize the existing trees in that area in addition to this cluster down by the driveway.


Mr. Bradley said all those other trees that they could see as represented by circles would be installed and he thought there were about 100 or so trees that they could bring back onto the property in that fashion and then they hope to contribute to the Woodland Fund to compensate for the balance of the property and to comply with their Ordinance in that respect.


Chairman Clark closed the Public Hearing.





Member Hoadley said he was somewhat familiar with mini-storage projects because he tried to develop one himself years ago. He said proper drainage of the roadways between the buildings was a problem of mini-storage units and he asked how did they intend to drain them.


Mr. Bradley said that would probably be best answered by his engineer, but they have an on-site drainage system designed and it was a retention system with a catch basin and the engineer's drawing was not there, but as Mr. Bluhm mentioned, they were going to retain on site through this catch basin system.


Member Hoadley said regarding the fencing, one of the problems that this type of business has was theft, burglary, and robbery and in all the studies that he has done on it in the past, it was a major problem and it does effect their infrastructure in policing. He felt one of the ways to address those concerns was with adequate fencing, such as barbed wire on top of the fencing, the height of fencing, and adequate lighting. He asked Mr. Bradley if he could address those concerns.


Mr. Bradley said first of all on the entry gate, they have a computerized entry system and a tenant would punch in their code and it would open the gate and record their entering on the property and it also de-activates the alarm in their unit so the tenants could go to their unit and go in and out and then when they close their particular door and when they exit, there was another keypad which would ring on their unit and there would also be a record of that transaction.


Mr. Bradley said in terms of the fencing and security, their proposal was a chainlink fence with a 6 foot chain link fence around the perimeter and they also use infra-red beams corner to corner basically to pick up anyone who may decide they want to get in their property and it would activate an alarm.


Member Hoadley asked what was the height of the beams above the fence and Mr. Bradley said it would vary and they would usually have a recommendation made on that and they would be offset from the fence and they were usually in the landscape area so that the trees don't interfere. (tape was inaudible at times)


Member Hoadley said what he found in his studies was that the potential burglars would bridge those fences with a u-shape ladder scenario and they just would walk right over the top of it and the fence would be no deterrent at all and unless the beams were in the right place or unless they have barbed wire high enough, it didn't seem to deter them.


Mr. Bradley said anyone who wants to enter a property, if they were good enough, would do it, however, with the individual alarm units they feel that was quite a deterrent and if someone opens or cuts a lock or bashes a door in and gains entry in that fashion, the alarm would go off and the alarm company would be called and the police would be called.


Member Hoadley asked about lighting, and Mr. Bradley indicated there would be lights on the buildings and the driveways and they were motion sensitive so they wouldn't be on all night and if a dog gets on the property or someone jumps over and they start to pass underneath the sensor, it would activate the light and it would light up the aisleway.


Member Hoadley asked if it was a 24 hour operation and Mr. Bradley said it was a limited hour operation and there was a Manager's Unit up front who controls the people coming in and out, in addition to the computer activated entry system.


Member Hoadley asked if there was any possibility of damaging any ecological system with the discharge water there and Mr. Bluhm said they took a look at the drain that runs along the north side of Grand River that discharges into the Ingersol Drain and has water quality devices built into it, and those were routinely evaluated at the time of final to determine if they were going to be adequate for this site and if they were not, they would recommend at the final plans, that they would incorporate some type of an oil and gas separator, but all indications now show that that wouldn't be necessary because of down stream devices.


Member Hoadley asked if this was CBS construction and Mr. Bradley said they would be all masonry block buildings with brick facades on the end of the buildings and the Managers Unit and the front areas were all brick and had a gable roof system.


Member Hodges asked if the Manager's Unit was a residence and Mr. Bradley said yes, they live on the premise and the accommodations were of two-bedrooms, which were very nice and, modern, with approximately a 300 sq. ft. office area that was located in the front of the residence and they live there and that was part of their job.


Member Hodges said another comment that was made was that there would be no retail activity on site and Mr. Bradley indicated that was correct. She said often times facilities like this offer for sale storage boxes and things like that. Mr. Bradley said when he wrote his letter, he understood it to mean retail activity for the general public. He indicated they would offer locks and boxes and pay for people who enter who were customers and many times they give that stuff away as part of a promotional situation, but they don't advertise and they don't encourage the general public to come and buy anything from them.


Member Hodges said the reason she asked was because she has purchased boxes at facilities like this and not had a unit. Mr. Bradley said they don't promote it and they don't have a display and they put them in a unit and if someone needs a box, they do it more as an accommodation from a tenant standpoint, and they would sell it to them, but the only thing that they really display actively was the box and they make it available for the tenant and that makes it more convenient that driving down to a local store to buy one.


Member Hodges asked what was the length of an angled parking space and Mr. Arroyo said a typical parking space was approximately 20 feet in length and that was their general standard in terms of providing for a space 9 x 20.


Member Hodges said the reason she asked this question was if they allow for additional slanted parking on the sides of the building, would there be enough space to do a turnaround, and if she understood the position of the parking spaces, they would be opposite the opening doors.


Mr. Bradley said yes and that was really a technicality in terms of their requirement for as many spaces as they were asking for on the site and the demand for spaces on this type of property. He indicated he operates over 60 properties nationally and to be honest, this requirement for 91 spaces was fairly excessive based on the average mini-storage in the community.


Mr. Bradley said most of their properties of this size would have 3-4 parking spaces and that was it and that serves the need for that particular facility. He said they were just striping those spaces in the driveways in order to comply with the Ordinance for 91 spaces, but if there were 91 people on the site in a given day, that would be extremely excessive, let alone at the same time.


Mr. Bradley said the trip generation on a project like this was about 2.13 trips per 1,000 sq. ft. of building area, which equates to 160 trips per day and a trip was an in and an out, so that was only 80 cars per day.


Member Hodges said her concern was if she was parked in one of those locations and someone wished to access their unit, was that possible if she was directly across from their unit and could a car pass with her parked there and could two cars pass plus a car be parked there.


Mr. Bradley said they don't consider parking as loading and if they were in a certain unit, they would park there and do their thing and if someone was parked directly next to you, you would not have left your vehicle and you would be right there so as a good neighbor and as a normal operating situation on a day-to-day basis, common courtesy would be that you would back up six feet to let that person access their unit, if in fact, coincidentally two tenants were next to each other at the same time. He added the chances of that happening on a regular basis or a daily basis or a weekly basis was fairly minimal.


Mr. Bradley said to answer their question about circulation, their experience was that those drive aisles were 25 feet and most of their projects were 20 feet and there was more than adequate space for maneuvering for the Fire Department and they would not approve this based on their comments, and he didn't think they would approve their plan had they disagreed with the width of the driveway and the turning radius.


Member Hodges said she understood that but with the addition of the parking spaces, now it becomes a concern. Mr. Bradley said from a practical matter, it just wouldn't be used and there were stripes on the pavement and they were complying with the regulation. He said they just recently built a 100,000 sq. ft. self-storage property in Southern California and they have four parking spaces of which one was handicapped and that was multi-story.


Mr. Bradley said he has been in this business for 22 years and the situation she was referring to does not occur that often or enough to be a problem.


Member Lorenzo said when Mr. Bradley was asked about retail sales, he had answered that he did not encourage the public to come to him for boxes and various other items, but she asked would he sell to the public if a member of the public came to him.


Mr. Bradley said to be honest, he didn't want to mislead anyone or misspeak about the situation, but it was really an accommodation and if someone walked in and said they had to have a box, he would sell them a box but if the Commission wants to restrict that even further than what he agreed to, he would agree to that. He said but practically speaking, they don't advertise it and they don't have truck rentals but if someone walked off the street and wanted to buy a box, they would sell them a box, but it was not a practical matter. He said if they want to place a restriction on that item, he could live with that.


Member Lorenzo said to Ms. Lemke, they had spoke earlier today and as they have indicated that evening, the whole northerly portion of this site was of a good quality woodlands such as Maple and Oak, and obviously ideally, it would be nice to have all five buildings removed from that area. She said in a compromise situation, if they were to remove three buildings, which three buildings would be impacting the woodlands the most.


Ms. Lemke said it appears from the woodland survey if they started from the western property line and discounted the first building and took out the next three buildings, that would be the area of the larger trees on the site.


Member Lorenzo said so the most easterly and most westerly buildings were not where most of the impact would be taking place then and Ms. Lemke said as far as the size of trees, that was true; as far as woodlands, it would impact from the property east to west and it would impact the understory and the trees that were there and whether they were large or small trees, but basically if they look at just the center of the woodland area, that was where the largest trees of oak and maple were located.


Member Lorenzo said she had some major concerns with this because one of the considerations that they look at for issuing Special Land Use approval were impacts to the natural resources on the site. She said it doesn't seem to her that in trying to maximize the use of this property, that any consideration has been given to the quality woodlands that Ms. Lemke was referring to on the side there, the large oaks and maples.


Member Lorenzo said she would be willing to approve the Special Land Use subject to the removal of those three buildings that Ms. Lemke just referred to, but with all 10 buildings in place, she could not possibly support this. She said she would make a motion at this point.


Mr. Bradley first asked if he could address that point. He indicated there has been a lot of thought and effort put into the design of this property and the woodlands they were referring to were completely isolated and the property was developed completely on all three sides, and they have been very sensitive to the Woodlands Ordinance and feel that they have offered in terms of additional planting of trees and the contribution of the fund, to comply with that. He said to remove buildings from this design was not economically viable and they just wouldn't be able to do the project.


Member Lorenzo said she could appreciate his position, but she would like to make her motion.


It was,


Moved by Member Lorenzo



To grant Special Land Use Approval to Mini-U-Storage, SP95-10, subject to all of the Consultants' comments and recommendations and subject to the removal of the three buildings that she previously referred to on the north side of the property.





Member Bonaventura asked for clarification and Member Lorenzo had stated the north side of the property and would that be to the east or west and it was stated to the west.







Member Mutch said to Ms. Lemke looking at the same area and the removal of those three buildings because they were on that particular horizontal, which was actually a north and south alignment and the way the trees were set up, that was what they would have to remove, but she asked if they were east and west aligned, would that make any difference.


Ms. Lemke replied no not in this instance with all the pavement, but there were other alternatives that could be explored and the developer could shorten the buildings and Member Mutch said from which end, and Ms. Lemke replied from the north end and Member Mutch said to keep the trees on the north perimeter then and Ms. Lemke said yes.


Ms. Lemke further stated of course she was not speaking from an economic position as to whether that would be economically feasible to shorten the buildings but that would be an option to save additional woodlands.


Member Mutch said what she was inquiring about was where the greatest concentration of trees were and if they were going to avoid building anything where that was with the least disturbance, then they have an area that was more toward Grand River away from the northern perimeter as opposed to necessarily being in the center and Ms. Lemke said that was correct.


Member Mutch then referred to a comment that was made in response to some questions such as "this was just a technicality and we are doing it to meet the Ordinance." Mr. Bradley said he didn't think he said that and Member Mutch replied he had referred to the striping and had said, "it was only a technicality and we are doing it to meet the Ordinance requirements for additional parking."


Member Mutch said she hoped that Mr. Bradley appreciated the fact that it was their Ordinance. Mr. Bradley said absolutely and he was not trying to demean the Ordinance in any way and he was just indicating from an operator's standpoint and having the history they do in this business, that there was very little demand for more than several parking spaces.


Member Mutch said she was certain he was right and a person doesn't see crowds of people going in and out and she could appreciate that his practical experience with this type of use was more enlightening than what might be required, but unfortunately that was what they have. Mr. Bradley said he understood and they were willing to comply with everything in the Ordinance.


Member Mutch said the other concern she had was something Member Hodges already raised which was that whether the people were there to use the parking or not once it was striped, and when they use it that would be what they use and they would park where that striping was. She said she didn't hear anything from Mr. Arroyo on whether in his opinion, once that striping was in place, did it create a safety problem for cars. She asked if someone was already parked and someone else wanted to travel down that lane, let alone park and have access to a nearby unit, would that be a problem just to drive through.


Mr. Arroyo said obviously they were going to have to meet the parking standards that were in their Ordinance and if they were providing angled parking, there was a minimum aisle width requirement adjacent to that angle parking and if they have a problem from a width standpoint and meeting that, then the option would be to provide for parallel parking.


Mr. Arroyo said the Estate Storage proposal was a parallel parking proposal that was in at their last meeting and that was another option which would narrow the width that would be necessary to provide for both the aisle and the parking area. He said for them to provide anything less than that, they would have to go before the ZBA and state their case there, but they would have to meet the Ordinance requirement and they would have to design the facility accordingly.


Member Mutch said regarding the suggestion that was made that night with the red dots for the additional parking, that was not something that he has reviewed yet then and Mr. Arroyo said that was correct and Member Mutch said that was why he couldn't answer her question more completely and Mr. Arroyo said that was correct.


Member Bonaventura asked Mr. Pargoff if there have been any calculations on the amount of the donation to the Tree Fund and Mr. Pargoff replied at this point in time they were not sure how many they were going to be able to replant and they have not done a total, but he believed it may be around $30,000-$40,000 and Member Bonaventura said he was curious as to how their Tree Fund looked now as far as the funds, and Mr. Pargoff replied he believed the estimate he had for it was around $15,000-$16,000.


Member Bonaventura asked could he give him a clue as to what he would use those monies for in the community. Mr. Pargoff replied more than likely they would be used for the area along 12 Mile Road, the boulevard islands that were out there, seed money for grant applications, and also along Decker Road, primarily the road bond issues that they have in place at this time.


Member Hoadley said just to address Member Hodges' concerns and Member Mutch's concerns about parking, he did have some expertise in this because he made a very extensive study and he was going to develop a storage concern very similar to this with about the same amount of acreage and all the studies that he did, indicated the applicant was absolutely correct, and there was very, very little use for parking and as far as getting around, they could make all those roads one-way which was what he was going to do so that they don't have two-way traffic anyway so to him that was a non-issue.


Member Hoadley said as far as the woodland impacts, he felt they have met all the requirements so he would make a motion.


It was,


Moved by Member Hoadley



To grant Special Land Use Approval to Mini-U-Storage, SP95-10; and to also send a positive recommendation to the ZBA to approve this project for the variance, subject to the conditions of the Consultants' letters.




Member Lorenzo said she would make another motion.


It was,


Moved by Member Lorenzo

Seconded by Member Weddington



To deny Special Land Use for Mini-U-Storage, SP95-10 due to the concerns both of parking and the woodlands intrusion.





Member Bonaventura said he would vote against the motion when it comes up for a vote. He indicated he was a big supporter of protecting woodlands and what they were doing was almost heart-wrenching as far as ripping out the woodlands and replacing it with concrete, but he has considered what he believed to be a true number of 80 trips per day.


Member Bonaventura said he was looking at what the burden of the community would be and he sees a burden of loosing a woodlands but he also saw a woodlands that was surrounded by concrete. He said he also saw the advantage to the community and the benefit to the community of having a substantial sum of money of $30,000-$50,000 being put in a tree fund, which has now $15,000 in it according to the City Forester, which would give the City quality trees and nursery trees and aesthetically pleasing trees.


Member Bonaventura indicated as much as he disliked their approach as far as not necessarily following their Ordinance and coming in with options, he still felt that it would be beneficial to the community to go the route of tree replacements.


Member Mutch said she has come to a similar conclusion, but she felt rather than voting to support this motion since she didn't support the previous motion, it appears to her to be more of a matter of lacking the documentation that other alternatives were considered. She said what Ms. Lemke has said was that they may consider alternatives and document that and then come back and say after considering those alternatives, this was still the only way they could go and Ms. Lemke may not agree with him in the end, but the requirements for the Commission was that he do at least that much.


Member Mutch said what she would like to see was that Mr. Bradley has the opportunity to do that and if they choose not to do that, and come back, then he has the same risk in terms of the way the vote may go, but she wasn't ready to vote to deny it because that was the only issue really that was keeping her from supporting it.


Member Mutch said she was agreeing with Member Bonaventura that the benefit to the community was really there if it was approved, despite the fact that those trees would be gone. She said where she disagreed with Member Bonaventura was that it was an area surrounded by concrete and that may be true, but Intech she believed was to the west and the people who work in what was a rather nice complex there, may enjoy having trees to look at.


Member Mutch said if they happen to be perimeter trees and they were dense enough, then that would be great and she felt they would prefer to see the trees rather than the storage units and obviously if the woods were left, then that would be even better, but she felt they often overlook the fact that there were people who spend all day in this community working here and helping it to be a thriving successful community, so why shouldn't they have the benefits that they were looking for in zoning and planning decisions.


Member Mutch said also some of those people live elsewhere in the City so she felt they should be looking at benefits for them as well and that was the only part she disagreed on. She felt they should consider that when they were looking at those things, but she didn't feel it should be outright denied so she wouldn't support the motion.


Member Weddington said she was looking at the benefit to the City and this was one of the main gateways to the City, their main road and here they were destroying some trees and what little bit of amenity was there and paving over every square foot with concrete, acerbating more water problems, and she was still uncomfortable with the water management there.


Member Weddington said the Woodlands Ordinance was a preservation ordinance and here they have a few trees and putting a few samplings some place here doesn't do anything and it just doesn't compare, and she didn't care how many there were, it doesn't compare to large mature trees and she was looking at this area of the City and she felt they must have a mini-storage unit for every man, woman and child, dog and cat in this City and she didn't see where this was going to give them the benefit that they would like to see.


Member Weddington felt there could be other uses put to this property that would be beneficial that would conform with the Ordinance, so there was no way she could support the special use as this was proposed. She felt it could be re-worked perhaps but there were other considerations in her mind. She said to her, five acres was five acres, and she would be real surprised if the ZBA would find any hardship in this case to grant a variance at all and that was why she supported the motion and she wanted to see something else happen with this property that would be economically feasible for the developers.


Member Mutch said she agreed that Grand River in particular and especially close to Haggerty Road was an entry into the City and they should really be keeping an eye on what happens along there. She said when she first looked at the Agenda and saw another storage facility, she had to look at it more closely because they just had one at their last meeting and another one a few meetings before that.


Member Mutch said unless her ability to visualize from the site plan was way off the mark, it appears to her from Grand River itself, despite the angle of the road, they were not seeing the storage facilities, and they were also not seeing the trees, although they may see the trees above, but they really wouldn't see much of that either if it was saved and it was to the back of the property and it wasn't up near the road.


Member Mutch said so she didn't think the storage units were what they see and they see the Manager's Office, the part at the front, unlike Haggerty Road where they see quite a bit of what was there.


Member Hoadley then called the question.


Chairman Clark said the motion was to deny the Special Land Use.



ROLL CALL VOTE: Lorenzo (Yes), Mutch (No), Weddington (Yes), Bonaventura (No), Clark (Yes), Hoadley (No), Hodges (No)


(4) Nays (3) Yeas





It was then,


Moved by Member Hoadley



To grant Special Land Use to Mini-U-Storage, SP95-10 and to send a positive recommendation to the City Council subject to a variance by the ZBA for the 2 points of an acre and subject to all the Consultants' recommendations.





Chairman Clark said the motion for Special Land Use with a positive recommendation to the ZBA would not go to City Council and the Commission would have the last word on the Special Land Use, so they would decide that, so he asked for a second to the motion for granting Special Land Use approval.


Member Bonaventura asked for clarification on the recommendation to the ZBA.


Chairman Clark said he was suggesting that they make a positive recommendation to the ZBA in terms of the variance they would need since this was less than five acres.



Mr. Watson said Member Hoadley had said a positive motion to the City Council and Member Hoadley said he meant the ZBA. Mr. Watson said the project would not go to the Council at all. Member Bonaventura said that answered his question.




Chairman Clark suggested given the concerns that were expressed here that night and the issues raised by Ms. Lemke regarding the pursuit of other alternatives, he would suggest that someone may wish to make a motion to postpone the matter.


It was then,


Moved by Member Mutch

Seconded by Member Hodges



To postpone Mini-U-Storage, SP95-10.






Mr. Watson asked if the purpose of the motion to postpone was to have the Applicant bring back additional information on the lack of other feasible and prudent alternatives and Member Mutch said yes and Member Hodges said yes.



ROLL CALL VOTE: Mutch (Yes), Weddington (Yes), Bonaventura (Yes), Clark (Yes), Hoadley (No), Hodges (Yes), Lorenzo (Yes)


(6) Yeas (1) Nay)





It was asked if there was a date and Chairman Clark asked Mr. Cohen if this could be placed on the next Agenda in two weeks and Mr. Cohen said that Agenda was pretty tight and he asked Ms. Lemke if that would be enough time to review and Ms. Lemke replied it would depend on what comes in.


Mr. Cohen said he would suggest the first meeting in April, April 5th.


It was then,


Moved by Member Lorenzo

Seconded by Member Hoadley



To postpone Mini-U-Storage, SP95-10 until the meeting of April 5, 1995.





Member Bonaventura said they have run into a problem on the Planning Commission that they were getting a backlog and rather than turn into the "Novi McPlanning Commission," he felt what they should have was "first-come, first-serve." He said if this person has been up here that night and his project was being postponed, he would think that the proper thing to do would be to put him to the next meeting at the top of the list.


Chairman Clark said except there were other items already scheduled and what Mr. Cohen was saying was that the possibility of getting them on that very next Agenda was very remote.


Chairman Clark said he had no problem if he was suggesting that they be the first item for consideration on that subsequent Agenda, which would be the first meeting in April.


Member Bonaventura asked was he right in his thinking that it was this Planning Commission that approves the Agenda and not necessarily the Administration and the Administration does the framework for it but it was the Planning Commission that approves the Agenda, and Chairman Clark said correct.


Member Bonaventura said as far as the next Agenda, he hasn't seen that as yet and Chairman Clark said that was his whole point and he felt the Planning Department would know better what items were on the proposed Agenda than the Commission, since they were working with it everyday and he didn't want to presume to micro-manage what goes on in the Planning Department in terms of trying to accommodate all of the projects and all of the developers that come into the community and he was sure everyone would love to be first.


Member Bonaventura said to the Chairman that he was absolutely correct, but for instance, a motion was made at the beginning of this meeting that if the Commission goes to midnight and they get up to the end of Novi Pavilion and they have Aspen Woods and Federal Express waiting, he thought what was going to happen was at midnight, they shut the meeting down and he felt the proper thing to do would be to take Aspen Woods and Federal Express and put them to the top of the list at the next meeting.


Member Bonaventura said they were getting over-booked here and he didn't know if it was their fault or whose fault it was, but they don't have enough time to accomplish what they need to.


Chairman Clark said they have to remember though that they could never anticipate how many people may come out when they have a public hearing. He stated they have had some public hearings where they have expected a large number of people to be there or a handful or no one shows. He stated they have had some projects come before them for public hearings that they thought were relatively straight-forward and clean in terms of minimal or no perceived problems, but then find the Audience filled with residents who wish to address them on those items, and there was not much they could do about that other than to follow their normal procedure and accommodate those people and give them a fair and equitable hearing.


Member Hoadley said he philosophically agreed with Member Bonaventura and what was fair was fair and if they don't get through the Agenda that night, they should be at the top of the list at the next meeting, and if a recommendation needs to be made, he would make it.


Chairman Clark said his point was well-taken and from what Mr. Cohen was saying, the first conceivable meeting that they could get them on was April 5th and he had no problem given the discussion that they have just had if Mr. Cohen wants to put that as the number one item, so they would not have to wait a length of time and he asked Mr. Cohen if there were any problems doing that.


Mr. Cohen said he didn't mean to complicate things, but they could fit them on the 15th possibly, but it depends if Aspen Woods or Federal Express were going to be on the 15th and if they have those two projects, it would make it tight because they have two Public Hearings for sure and they have one project and another recommendation for a waiver from an applicant. He said so there were 4 items for sure on the next Agenda and then 6 items with Aspen Woods and Federal Express and then 7 items with Mini-U Storage.


Chairman Clark stated but they may get through one of the other items that evening.


Member Mutch said she was in agreement with Member Bonaventura. She said the Commission approves the Agenda at the beginning of the meeting and as they did that night, they could set some conditions on that either by time or project or whatever, so they presumedly were in some control along the way.


Member Mutch said if the Commission by their actions, either by ending the meeting early or by some other decision, put something on a future Agenda, it seems to her that they should be dealing with those as unfinished business versus someone else who was coming up for the first time.


Member Mutch said granted their Agendas were already complicated by the fact that Public Hearings require public notice specific to a date, so those items would be on that Agenda and they would have to deal with them that night.


Member Mutch said there were other people who have been told at previous meetings that that would be the first meeting they could be on, so they were expecting to be on that Agenda and she felt in this particular case, that was where she would refer back to this particular project, and as a Commission, they had a motion to approve that failed and they had a motion to deny that failed and it was by their action or the way they went about this, that it was coming back because they chose to postpone it or to allow the decision to be postponed.


Member Mutch said it seems to her only fair that it come back at the next possible opportunity even if that means that it was the last item and she didn't care what, but it seems to her that it should be on there somehow as unfinished business.


Chairman Clark said there was another alternative that he could propose given the fact that they have several items, some of which they may not get to that night and if the Commission was amenable and if the Council Chambers was available, they could have a meeting next Wednesday night to deal only with those items that they were not able to address that night so that when they come to the next regularly scheduled meeting, they have no backlog.


Chairman Clark said that would mean very simply that nothing else was to be added to that Agenda other than any other unfinished items from the meeting that evening so that every Petitioner has a full and fair opportunity to be heard.


Member Mutch felt given the time and what they still have left on their Agenda, that was probably a good idea and one that she would support. However, she said there was one other way they could deal with this particular project, which was they have approved a postponement for the purpose of them providing the documentation on an alternative and as Ms. Lemke indicated earlier, the review may or may not be extensive.


Member Mutch said if they come back with an alternative that does indeed remove or relocate the buildings, everyone has to look at it because it was a different plan and that was going to take more review time, more discussion time, and generate more questions.


Member Mutch said if it comes back as being they have looked at everything and this was what they were going to go with, that may require something different and Chairman Clark said they could decide at that time how they would act.


Chairman Clark asked if there was support for a meeting next Wednesday and Member Hoadley said he would be glad to make special meetings, but he couldn't do it on the alternate Wednesdays as he had a commitment every other alternate Wednesday other than the Commission meeting Wednesday.


Member Bonaventura said he was getting confused. He said they had a special meeting last Wednesday and then their regular meeting before that. He then stated he has been on the Commission for two years and he has not missed a regular meeting and that was because he committed himself to this and volunteered for it and felt when a person does such a thing, they don't miss meetings. He said as far as he was concerned, just get in line and wait and the Commission would get to them.


Chairman Clark asked for a show of hands for anyone available for a meeting next Wednesday and there were about four members.


Member Hodges said she had one comment and she felt they have to remember too when an Applicant comes to be heard before the Planning Commission, they have to see that Applicant within an X number of days. She said the Clerk does not have the authority to tell them to get in line or sorry they got bumped, but by Ordinance, they were to hear those people or at least put them on the Agenda, and if they make other arrangements once they were on the Agenda, they could do that.


Mr. Watson said Mr. Rogers could correct him if he was wrong, but for site plans, he didn't think there was a particular requirement, and there were requirements for subdivisions and that was to consider it, but he didn't believe there was a time requirement.


Mr. Rogers said the practice in other communities was they may have to get in line and wait and he was thinking of Sterling Heights and Milford Township but for Novi, he didn't think there was a law that says they put it on.


Member Hodges commented they were humans and they have time constraints and after they put in a 16 hour day, they make mistakes, and she didn't think that was fair to the Applicant, however, she would like to have them come back and have a chance to meet with the Consultants and work it out and make it a feasible plan, whatever time was necessary and she wanted to see something positive happen.



Chairman Clark asked if there was an alternative day next week that everyone might be available and that was discussed briefly but there was no consensus. Chairman Clark then said since there was no consensus, the motion was to table this item until the first meeting in April, April 5, 1995 and Member Hoadley said he would like to see it placed first on the Agenda. A vote was then taken.



ROLL CALL VOTE: Weddington (Yes), Bonaventura (No), Clark (Yes), Hoadley (Yes), Hodges (Yes), Lorenzo (Yes), Mutch (Yes)


(6) Yeas (1) Nay-Bonaventura





Chairman Clark indicated he has been apprised that for one of the items on the Agenda, Federal Express, that would be a relatively short item and they do have representatives who have come that night from out of state, so he would ask those people to present their project next, but first Mr. Cousineau of Aspen Woods asked to speak.






4. Aspen Woods, SP94-36B - Property Located South of Eleven Mile Road, easterly of Beck Road for Possible One-Family Clustering Option, Preliminary Site Plan, Woodlands Permit and Wetlands Permit Approval.


Mr. Ray Cousineau asked if Aspen Woods could be tabled to the next available meeting simply so he could appear before a full Commission and that might also help expedite the Commission's reviews that evening.


Chairman Clark said he was asking just to be tabled until March 15th then and Mr. Cousineau said that would be fine.


It was,


Moved by Member Hodges

Seconded by Member Lorenzo



To table Aspen Woods, SP94-36B to the March 15, 1995 Regular Planning Commission meeting.


(voice vote) Motion Carried Unanimously


Mr. Cohen indicated Mr. Cousineau would be number one that night under Matters for Consideration.


Member Mutch said Mr. Cousineau had said he wanted to appear before a full Commission and he should understand there were no guarantees. The Commission then discussed Federal Express.



5. Federal Express, SP94-24 (E and F) - Located at the northeast corner of Meadowbrook Road and Eleven Mile.


The Petitioner was present and indicated he appreciated the Commission's indulgence in taking his project out of order that evening. He indicated he has come from Indianapolis and he appreciated the Commission recognizing that.


The Petitioner indicated they were there with a Revised Preliminary site plan approval and a Final site plan approval, which have met the recommendations of their Consultants after working with them on various submittals since their appearance here in October. He said additionally there was a request for approval for a variance on the facade which also was recommended by the Consultants.


The Petitioner then indicated he would be happy to answer any questions. He indicated they would like to begin this facility as soon as possible and Federal Express was anxious to make a move and be into this new facility prior to their most busy season which occurs the beginning of next November.





Mr. Rogers said this particular plan was requested to be brought back for Final for the Commission's review and one change that was quite noticeable was they had a driveway up to Meadowbridge Drive, which was the industrial subdivision to the north and they were not able to consummate that use of a private road for a second access, so what they have there was a circulation around the building and into the building from the east end for the various traffic and then it goes south to Eleven Mile and comes along back to Meadowbrook Road, north or south, up the interchange.


Mr. Rogers indicated the setbacks were complied with. He said he thought Eleven Mile was an industrial collector road and then they have the 40 foot setback on Meadowbrook Road from the future right-of-way.


Mr. Rogers said so in his letter of February 20th and in a subsequent memo of February 24th, they find that the plan was acceptable and he was pleased that Mr. Necci's report was there that evening on the facade adjustment because they were within 300 feet of Meadowbrook Road and the material mix was a little less liberal. He indicated he recommended approval of the Final site plan.


Mr. Bluhm indicated he has reviewed the Revised Preliminary and there was a letter dated December 20th and then their most recent Final site plan review about a week ago, February 22nd, and then he also has provided a letter dated today on the table where they have reviewed the berming aspects of the plan that was in question when the Planning Commission looked at it some time ago.


Mr. Bluhm indicated the berm appears to meet all the engineering requirements for Final site plan, however, he would like to recommend that any approval that was given be contingent on the Final site plan coming back to them for further review administratively because they do have some other issues regarding engineering that were somewhat minor but that need to be addressed still.


Mr. Arroyo said he has also reviewed the Revised Plan and as Mr. Rogers indicated from a traffic standpoint, the key modification was the elimination of the secondary access to Meadowbridge Drive because all access would now occur off of Eleven Mile Road and the applicant was now showing a passing lane since virtually 90-95% of the traffic entering this site would likely be left turns from Eleven Mile into the site.


Mr. Arroyo said the passing lane would then allow for through-traffic to by-pass the left turning traffic. He said he found that the internal layout was acceptable and he was recommending approval.


Chairman Clark indicated they do have a letter from the Novi Fire Department dated February 6, 1995 from Mr. Daniel W. Roy, Captain indicating that this plan has been reviewed and approval was recommended.





Member Bonaventura asked if they have taken care of the overhood doors facing Meadowbrook and Eleven Mile Road. Mr. Rogers said that was a requirement they may recall when the Planning Commission reviewed the Preliminary site plan, to dress up and make attractive the perimeter and he would like Ms. Lemke to review what has been done pursuant to that request of the Commission.


Ms. Lemke said they have had several letters going back and forth to the Petitioner and this was about the third one before they finally approved it and they have added a 3 foot berm along Eleven Mile Road and they planted it quite heavily in front of the doors with spruce 15 feet on center and the junipers would grow to 10 feet and then they have mature canopy trees, Norway Maples, right up adjacent to where the doors were and that would give a third dimension of screening.


Ms. Lemke said those were planted very close together and they could see them on the plan and that was about the size they would be when they go in and in another ten years, they would totally fill in so that meets the requirements of the Ordinance and she was satisfied with the screening.


Member Bonaventura mentioned opacity and does that mean visually being able to see through such berming and Ms. Lemke said that was correct. He asked does it meet that and Ms. Lemke said it meets that, but they wouldn't have instant opacity because they have to have room for plant materials to grow since they were a living entity so if they planted those right next to each other, say 5 feet next to each other, then they would crowd each other out and they would lose lower branches, so this was still close, about 15 feet apart. She said they were still going to grow together somewhat but it would allow them a little bit more air, a little more space to grow and develop rather than crowding right from the beginning.


Ms. Lemke said the 3 foot berm would provide them their opacity at eye level as they were driving by immediately, which was why they usually require a combination of the berm, than the lower shrubs, and in this case the junipers and then an evergreen screening. She said also a lot of times they would require a third level, which would be their canopy trees which would provide that screening on a higher level.


Member Bonaventura then thanked Ms. Lemke and said that was one of his main concerns.


Member Mutch asked if the signage on this was still going to say Federal Express or were they switching to Fed Ex and the Petitioner replied that would be up to the tenant, but it would probably be the new logo. Member Lorenzo asked if it was still purple and orange and the Petitioner said yes.


Chairman Clark said he would entertain a motion and there were several items before them and one was relative to Revised Preliminary Site Plan Approval and Final Site Plan Approval and then the Section 4 Waiver Approval.


It was then,


Moved by Member Hoadley

Seconded by Member Hodges



To grant Revised Preliminary Site Plan Approval, Final Site Plan Approval, and Section 4 Waiver Approval subject to the Consultants' recommendations to Federal Express, SP94-24 (E and F).



ROLL CALL VOTE: Weddington (Yes), Bonaventura (Yes), Clark (Yes), Hoadley (Yes), Hodges (Yes), Lorenzo (Yes), Mutch (Yes)






3. Novi Pavilion, SP95-03A - Property Located south of Grand River Avenue, easterly of Novi Road for Possible Preliminary Site Plan Approval.


Mr. Chuck Fosse of Wah Yee Associates was present. He said he was representing the Novi Pavilion project that evening. He said the building was situated on the south side of Grand River Avenue adjacent to an auto parts store and a doctors office. He said it was located with the maximum setback from the centerline of Grand River with just a minimum amount of parking located in front of the building, just two bays of parking and then the circulation was directed to the back with the additional amount of parking in the rear.


Mr. Fosse said that was located with a zero setback from the east property line and it was approximately 150 feet by 90 feet in total and it was planned to have three mixed tenants. He said there would be approximately a 7,000 sq. ft. retail tenant, a 2,800 sq. ft. office tenant and a 2,250 sq. ft. of bank or financial institution. He said this would just be a walk-in bank and there would be no drive-up facility involved.


Mr. Fosse said they have the required pedestrian path and landscaping adjacent to Grand River, as well as the buffers around the back and the additional interior landscape in the rear parking. He said behind the building was a continuous area that was designated as the loading space for the building so the loading zone requirements have been carried out there.


Mr. Fosse said one thing that has been revised on this site plan which was a bit different from the packets that they have, was they were two spaces above the minimum parking requirement and at the suggestion of the Steering Committee, they deleted two spaces along the west side of the building and put in two more landscape islands and trees to help break that up and soften that facade.


Mr. Fosse said the other item that they have changed in the packet that was indicated here was they were also suggesting that they would do some color patterning in the concrete walk-in front to break up the monochromatic effect of that sidewalk.


Mr. Fosse said the elevation as they see it was presented on this board and the north elevation or front elevation which faces Grand River has two main elements, one that represents the retail portion of the building and an element that represents the office and bank portion of the building and it was further delineated by the awnings over the bank area.


Mr. Fosse pointed out the west elevation. He said the east elevation which was at the zero property line, of course has no openings whatsoever and was rather simple. He said the south elevation which faces the other parking field and the loading area was again a rather simple elevation, but as they would notice, all of the elevations have a continuous roofline which was there for decorative reasons, but it also serves the purpose of screening all the rooftop equipment so the rooftop equipment would be screened from all four sides.


Mr. Fosse said the materials that would be used would be face-brick, and they were suggesting two different colors of face brick, a dark reddish brown color and then the bands and the base of the building would be done in a lighter brick, a contrasting brick, to give the linear feel.


Mr. Fosse said the material here and the small facias would be a synthetic plaster or a dryvit type of material. He said the roofing material would either be metal roofing or shingles and it could be a combination of the two, but right now the way this was rendered, it was shown as metal roofing.


Mr. Fosse said after they met with the Steering Committee last week, they had some other suggestions for them to consider and in the meantime, they have prepared a modified elevation for them to look at. He said one of their main concerns was they wanted to see more variety in the north elevation that faces Grand River. He explained what they did was to introduce a strong focal point or dominant element which they felt goes another step in breaking up this building and breaking it down into a smaller scale and making it look more like three units rather than one large unit.


Mr. Fosse said other than that, this elevation was pretty much the same except they have articulated the bank windows with smaller panes of glass and they have shown a different break-up of glass here for the office and then a fairly large continuous glass at the retail section. He stated also on the west elevation, they were suggesting there could be some windows and that probably wouldn't be the final location of the windows.


Mr. Fosse said what they would like to do was to reserve that until they get to the point of working with this tenant and locate those windows in strategic areas where they were with the interior layout, but there would be windows along that wall and then they could see the two trees that have been added on that side.


Mr. Fosse referred to the east elevation, which was a fairly blank elevation but that was the zero lot line and it was possible that someday another building could be built immediately adjacent to that, so he felt it made sense to keep this facade fairly simple and it was also because of the relationship with the adjacent existing building that it was also quite thoroughly screened from view.


Mr. Fosse said he has turned the finished materials around the corner so if they do turn the corner, it doesn't look unfinished, so other than that, it was a fairly simple elevation.


Mr. Fosse said then on the south side, they have articulated the roof a little differently as they could see and they have also added awnings over the service doors and again those may move a bit, but he felt small touches like that help soften that elevation and help make it look more like a functioning elevation rather than the rear of the building.


Mr. Fosse said that brings them up-to-date and he would be happy to answer any questions.





Mr. Rogers said this was the second submittal of this site plan and the first time they have seen it, and the Town Center Steering Committee reviewed it last week and it meets the Ordinances. He said they have set the building back properly and they have only one tier of parking, an aisle and two rows, so they don't have a big parking lot in front and they have provided the sidewalk and they now have compliance with off-street parking. He said the setbacks were complied with also. He said this was only a Preliminary site plan so the detailed facade and landscape plan would be done subsequently.


Mr. Rogers said he must draw their attention to the Minutes of this Town Center Steering Committee of February 22, which Mr. Cohen has presented here and they spent a lot of time on how to make this look like something other than a strip mall and give it identity and he was seeing a lot of good changes in the designs.


Mr. Rogers said they have broken up the roof-line and he liked the bell tower and they have considered the window treatment. He said regarding the rear elevation facing south towards "Main Street," he felt ultimately when this development has access to the south to maybe a common parking facility, this would be the primary entrance and they may find improved doorway access from the south to the merchants.


Mr. Rogers said this building would have dual frontage facing Grand River and facing Main Street, which be the action street, so the motion of the Town Center Steering Committee was to send a positive recommendation to the Commission subject to the facade concerns being addressed by the applicant. He felt in the week he has had, he has come a long way and maybe by the time the Final site plan comes in, they would see even further details.


Mr. Rogers indicated he recommended approval of the Preliminary site plan.


Mr. Bluhm indicated he has reviewed the Preliminary site plan and water and sewer would be brought in from Grand River and they would be providing storm sewers and detention on site in the parking areas and they would discharge it to the storm sewer again on the south side of Grand River.


Mr. Bluhm said beyond that, he had some additional minor comments but the plan demonstrates engineering feasibility.


Mr. Arroyo said he has also reviewed the Preliminary site plan and as previously mentioned, there was one primary point of access from Grand River and then a potential future secondary access down to the Main Street project and in terms of the access to Grand River, Grand River currently has a four-lane section adjacent to this project, one west-bound lane, a center turn lane and two east-bound lanes, consequently because the project was of a modest size, the Road Commission may not require a deceleration taper there and that would avoid some of the problems given the number of driveways in that area may actually be a little cleaner.


Mr. Arroyo said that issue would be resolved prior to the Final coming back before the Commission.


Mr. Arroyo said in terms of one of the previous plans, he was looking for off-street loading in the rear yard as required in the district, which was now provided in this plan and he was recommending approval of the Preliminary site plan.


Chairman Clark said they have received a letter from Daniel W. Roy, Captain Novi Fire Department dated February 10, 1995 indicating that the plan has been reviewed and approval was recommended.





Member Mutch said the buildings were proposed for three tenants but she asked was there any possibility that it would be a single tenant and it was stated no. She said the reason she asked was related to the facade and to the access doors because it was said the placement would be dependent upon how it was used, and she could see that if there was going to be a single user, that might even effect the front facade or the Grand River facade.


Member Mutch said regardless of whether it was one or several, she would want to see that break-up if that has occurred. She felt the changes were not only an improvement on the design of this particular structure, but it was also compatible to the new construction that was going on that was part of the Main Street project and she felt it would be a nice addition.


Member Mutch said regarding the east elevation's blank wall, she didn't see that as a problem given what was currently located next door. She said she did like the return, the detail coming around and she felt that was a very good addition.


Member Mutch said regarding the possibility of having a bank in the end unit, she was wondering about all the glass in the front and the windows on the side, and she felt banks nowadays were pretty well closed up for security reasons.


Mr. Fosse replied they still have windows as they were basically offices and he didn't think that amount of glass was going to be a problem and Mr. Rogers commented there were no drive-ups.


Member Mutch said having a bank with that much window, she would hate for it to be a target. She asked regarding the windows on the side and the retail facade on the front for the bank part, could that change.


Mr. Fosse said as he stated, they would work with the particular tenant and he felt it could change although he didn't think it was going to be a problem, but he felt they would be able to have windows on two sides.


Member Mutch asked if he could tell them what types of retail or office just in general would they be looking at. Mr. Fosse indicated possibly a Kinko's in the retail space. She asked if they were talking about a Kinko's that was open 24 hours and it was stated that most of them were open 24 hours and she added that would not be a problem for her.


Member Lorenzo commended the Petitioner and she felt he has come very far in one week and being one of the members of the Town Center Steering Committee, she knows what they have put him through last week and she appreciated his efforts.


Member Lorenzo said personally the only area she saw as still needing a little dressing up was the east elevation and to her from the naked eye, it just seems that a gable on the opposite side would really dress that up quite a bit, in addition to some landscaping as he has shown on the west elevation. She said she didn't know what the consensus would be of the Commission, but she would like to see a gable added there and some additional landscaping. She said other than that, she would support the project.


Member Weddington said maybe she was looking at the wrong place, but she thought there was a 10 foot side yard setback or did they get a variation in the TC-1 and Mr. Rogers said no not in the TC-1 and the TC-1 Main Street spoke to contiguity, one adjacent to another and that was the difference from the TC District, which has a 50 foot front yard and 10 foot side yard. He said there was a different schedule.


Mr. Rogers referred her to Page 3213 of the Ordinance. He said on the arterials, it was the right-hand column and for those buildings, it was a 0 lot line and they would have to get a construction easement to build this building by stepping on the adjacent property and they were aware of that and that would be Dan's Auto and then they have some greenspace of their own before they get to their driveway.


Member Weddington said she shared Member Lorenzo's feelings on this, but she did have a question about the south side of the building and as this area develops and if the Main Street concept takes off as many of them hope that it does, it was very possible that the orientation of this building and the use may shift around from Grand River to the opposite side. She asked were there plans or was there flexibility in there to allow easier access in and out of the building for customers, most of whom were going to be parking on the south side anyway. She said they were going to have to walk through the parking lot all the way around to the front entrance.


Mr. Fosse discussed that matter briefly. (tape inaudible)


Member Weddington asked what would that do to the shipping/receiving type truck deliveries and Mr. Fosse discussed that matter briefly. (tape inaudible)


Member Weddington said he would work that out with the tenants as they sign on then and Mr. Fosse discussed that matter briefly. (tape inaudible)


Member Weddington then indicated she was concerned about most of the parking being in what appears to be the rear of the building at this point and having them walk around through the puddles, through the parking lot to enter the building on the far side.


It was then,


Moved by Member Lorenzo

Seconded by Member Hoadley



To grant Preliminary Site Plan Approval to Novi Pavilion, SP95-03A subject to all the Consultants' recommendations and with further consideration of a gable on the southeast elevation and additional landscaping in that area, and to be brought back to the Commission for Final.





Member Mutch asked about the east facade and where would they put the landscaping and Member Lorenzo replied up against the building, wasn't there some room for some plantings.


Mr. Fosse then indicated that was on the neighbor's property and if they want to landscape it that was fine, but that was not on their property. Member Lorenzo thought there would be some room for planters or something.


Member Mutch said that brings to mind a question, which was the adjacent property was the auto repair business and she asked did that mean they were parking cars that were being brought in for repair right up against their building and she thought they went to their lot line.


Mr. Fosse said he didn't think they were paved up to the property line and Member Mutch said they don't park only where it was paved. Mr. Fosse said this was a fairly accurate representation of the pavement that was there and Member Mutch asked him if he was concerned about it and he replied no.



Member Lorenzo then said she would amend her motion to delete the landscaping since it was not feasible and a vote was taken.



ROLL CALL VOTE: Bonaventura (No), Clark (Yes), Hoadley (Yes), Hodges (Yes), Lorenzo (Yes), Mutch (Yes), Weddington (Yes)


(6) Yeas (1) Nay





Chairman Clark said they would return to Items 1 and 2 under Matters for Consideration.



1. Proposed FY 95-96 Planning Commission Work Program and Budget.


Report to the Planning Commission from the Planning Studies & Budget Committee, Planning & Community Development Department and Consultants regarding:

*Proposed Planning & Traffic Consultant Services/Retainers.

*Proposed Planning Studies - FY 95-96.

*Proposed Planning Commission Budget - FY 95-96


Recommendations to City Council and Administration (City Manager and Finance Director):

* Determination of Planning Study Priorities.

* Recommended Planning Commission Budget for FY 95- 96; (July 1, 1995.)



2. FY 94-95 Planning Commission Work Program & Budget

Recommendations for Commission, Consultant, Staff Actions regarding:


Master Plan 1995-2000

A. Futuring: Report from Planning Consultants-Commission Review of Alternatives Methodology.

B. Planning Practice: Panel Discussions, Workshops - Commission Decisions.

C. Master Plan Program: 1995-2000: Commission Review of Research Actions; Report from the Environmental Planning Committee.


Mr. Wahl said he would indicate that the Planning Commission has spent a considerable amount of time already through the Planning Studies and Budget Committee. He said it was an advantage having that Committee and the arrangement was that they were able to spend some time when the Commission as a whole was tied up with the Agenda, with other priorities, so they have been through this proposed $247,869 Budget over the past 60-90 days.


Mr. Wahl said they started by reviewing last year's work, going through Goals and Objectives, outlining exactly what it was that this Budget and Work Program were intended to accomplish. He would note that it was really part of an ongoing planning process, and the planning doesn't start and end with the approval of a Master Plan, but continues on during the period between those approvals which has been approximately a five year time-frame and they were just starting into the next update of the Master Plan.


Mr. Wahl said on Pages 3 and 4 of the Budget, there was a rundown of the proposed line items, both this year's existing Budget and the proposed Budget. He said that really breaks down essentially into three areas: Consultant Services, Planning Commission Administrative Functions, and Planning Studies priorities.


Mr. Wahl said the Consultant Services, which were outlined, were for only two Consultants, the principal Planning Consultant being Brandon Rogers and then Birchler/Arroyo, who provides both Planning and Traffic Consultant Services to the Commission.


Mr. Wahl said regarding the other Consultants that service the Commission, including the City Attorney and JCK Associates, funding for those Consultants was located in the General Fund and do not fall under the Planning Commission Budget. He said it should be noted that both the Traffic Consultant and the Planning Consultant do provide services to other City Departments, to the City Council and to the Administration upon request and as he indicated, their services were documented in their letters.


Mr. Wahl said for those not familiar with the retainers, years ago they used to essentially have billable hours and then the request for work would be paid for on an hour-by-hour basis and over a period of years, that expense increased and then the City decided that the best way to deal with it was to have some consistency in budgeting and therefore, it was put on an annual retainer.


Mr. Wahl said in Mr. Rogers' letter for example, he has shown what services were provided last year and in essence, the City received according to his billing rate, $41,0000 worth of services but he was compensated in the amount of $33,000 and that was just the way the retainer works and there may be a greater or lesser amounts of work depending upon the demands on their Consultants.


Mr. Wahl said the three retainers that were outlined in their Budget for Traffic and Planning Services then come to a total of $80,000 within that Planning Commission Budget and that was what the proposal was that was before them.


Mr. Wahl said obviously the retainers and the budgeting for those Consultants was up to the City Council, but they could obviously amend or otherwise effect that with their own recommendation to the City Council.


Mr. Wahl continued on with the Planning Commission Administrative Functions, and stated those were support services to them and the organizations they belong to. He indicated there were the incidentals of Printing and Publishing and Zoning Map Amendments that go forward to City Council, and the City Imitated Rezonings. He said the Conferences and Workshops were the major item there and that was for the Michigan Society of Planning Officials primarily and the American Planning Association. He said those administrative amounts come to $11,000.


Mr. Wahl said regarding the Planning Studies Priorities, those were very important planning functions of the Commission. He indicated Mr. Rogers has been working on the Appendix and just how the planning process has worked and how it was intended to work. He said in July, that would be part of a package which was part of this year's Work Program that explains the Master Plan Program from 1995 through the year 2000, when presumedly they would review and approve and update the Master Plan once again.


Mr. Wahl then said that outlines out the planning process has worked in the last five years and how it was projected out each fiscal year to be completed in the year 2000. He said so essentially the items that were in this Planning Studies Outline were not just something that was suppose to happen starting in July and then run for a year, but they were a part of a program of activities that would take place over a five year time-frame.


Mr. Wahl said the idea here was that it was both from the fiscal standpoint and phasing out the costs of the Master Plan and also the way they relate. He said in other words, they were going to do research before they get citizens involved and start answering questions and getting input and they need to have the base data in order to have the discussions, which then lead to policy decisions by the Planning Commission.


Mr. Wahl said so that was part of how the Planning Studies Priorities were arrived at. He said for example, for the Existing Land Use Study, the Housing Stock and Condition Survey, and the Thoroughfare Plan Data Collection and Analysis, those were all standard practice in Land Use Planning and they need to be done. He said they were done for the Master Plan Update in 1993 and they were done for the Master Plan Update in 1988 and they were done for the Master Plan Update in 1980.


Mr. Wahl said so the question was not whether they need to do them, but when they need to do them and the Planning Studies Committee has objectives and has said they need to do them in the coming fiscal year.


Mr. Wahl then discussed several of the other items. He said at the top of the list was Communications and Community Liaison Program, and Town Center Planning, and those have essentially been ongoing planning functions or responsibilities over a period of years and at least from his prospective as a professional planner, those were not things that they just do for one year and then they were finished with them. He said typically a person would not work on a Downtown for a couple of years and then go off and do something else. He said it would be a continuous process.


Mr. Wahl said it would be the same thing with the Zoning Ordinance Review and Update. He said he would even say as far as their Environmental Studies, although those studies were not something they do every year such as a Wildlife Habitat Study, essentially environmental planning was something that has been on the Agenda over a period of years and it just doesn't end at a particular point in time.


Mr. Wahl then indicated those studies come to a proposal of $156,813 and they have received a number of reports and memos in past packets which have shown how the Planning Commission Budget has declined almost annually over a period of years and he didn't have the figures in front of him right now, but essentially 6-7 years ago, the Department's and the Commission's combined total was about 5 1/2% - 6% of the total City Budget when the City Budget was about half of what it was now.


Mr. Wahl said the City Budget has now doubled and the City has grown tremendously and the percent of the City's Budget, which they might look at as a commitment to planning, has declined from 6% to about 3% total, and the Planning Commission was now down to .95% of the total City Budget and that was at $126,000.


Mr. Wahl said when they last met, he reported to the Committee that the Administration had indicated to him that City Council and the Administration and the Auditors had requested that all Departments work on the idea of not greater than a 4% increase in last year's Budget and obviously, there were inflationary costs that were built into the Budgeting process, but the Planning Commission Budget doesn't quite operate like an ongoing Department.


Mr. Wahl indicated there may be particular needs that come along at a particular point in time. He said right now he could tell them that for the site plan process, as they have been experiencing just in the last few meetings, they have 16 new plans in six weeks and several years ago, they might have had 30 for the entire year, so they were at an all-time high in terms of development and in every project that they deal with, it requires thorough analysis, requires information data, requires answers for the citizens and for the developer. He said that was what the Master Plan process was designed to provide.


Mr. Wahl said it was designed to provide them with the tools to make good planning decisions so without those special studies and without the information that they produce, they were much more in the area of opinion and much less in the area of planning practice facts and figures.


Mr. Wahl said he was just trying to make the point that those were not just "pie in the sky" planning dreams, and they were suppose to provide down-to-earth planning information for them to make good decisions.


Mr. Wahl said now the question that the Committee has to wrestle with was this was what they think the City needs for its future, for its planning but what do they do about the Budget. He said of course, the Planning Commission was really not the decision-making body to deal with budgetary matters, but those Commissioners who have been through those work sessions, and typically it has been the Planning Studies and Budget Committee who has met with Council, have gone through the process of discussion as to what were the priorities, what does the Budget allow and what were the Commission's needs.


Mr. Wahl indicated sometime ago, the City Council use to arrive at a figure which they felt was reasonable in view of all the needs of the City and it might be $150,000 and it might be $200,000, but that discussion has changed in recent years with the City Council essentially offering line item decisions on certain studies and voting on them accordingly. He added he was only offering this for their information and for their preparation for those Work Sessions.


Mr. Wahl said the conclusions of the discussions of the Committee was rather than shoot for a particular dollar amount, be it last year's amount, or 4% higher, or $150,000 or $200,000, the consensus of the Committee appeared to be to come back to the Commission and say to them, they see items as the needs for planning and to take that agenda forward to the City Council, have discussion and then see what happens from those conversations.


Mr. Wahl said now recognizing the reality of the Budget process and the information they had received, the back-up to that was each Commissioner's priority in terms of what they thought were the important priorities for planning for the coming fiscal year.


Mr. Wahl said they also had what the Consultants had recommended as professionals for their information. He felt what they were going to do was obviously request to the Commissioners that they haven't got that information, to complete the work, then remove the Consultants and Staff off to the side, and that was just for their advice, and then establish a consensus as to what the priorities were at this point in time from the Planning Commission, so when they would go forward into that hearing, they would have some order of priority in the event that that was important to the discussion.


Mr. Wahl felt that was a summary of what they have gone through in the last 60-90 days for the $250,000 Budget. He said it has been thoroughly discussed and it was part of an ongoing process that they have been working on, and there was not much here that was radically new to any of the Commissioners or even to the City Council, and all of those items have in one fashion or another been before them in a variety of decisions and discussions so he felt they were familiar with them.


Mr. Wahl said they did spend 2 1/2 hours in a work session going over each one of those in detail and so at this point, he felt this was a good summary of what this document was all about. He said he would just make one final remark which was that all of the paperwork here and all the documentation was a culmination of requests over the years from Council or Planning Commission as to wanting a certain type of information, goals and objectives, work descriptions, who was doing what work, and what it was going to cost.


Mr. Wahl said so that was how they arrived at this type of document and it has been changed, amended, added to, and deleted over the years and if for some reason this Commission would like it formatted differently, would like additional information or less information, they could do that, and he felt for purposes of going forward to City Council, this has been an effective document in the past and it has taken away a lot of the technical questions and focused more on whether they need to do this type of work and what were the priorities.


Mr. Wahl said so to that extent, he hoped it answered any questions they have. He indicated he has completed his presentation and he would turn it over to any of the Committee members, Chairman Clark, Member Weddington, Member Hoadley, or Member Taub who all helped to get this document forward. He said also all the Consultants participated in those committee meetings also. He then asked for any further comments.


Chairman Clark said what Mr. Wahl has stated was correct and a number of the members of the Commission were on the Budget Committee and they have debated this and discussed it at length. He said for the numbers that were proposed, he certainly did not think they were unreasonable in terms of the tasks that they were going to be asked to do in the forthcoming year.


Chairman Clark said it was just on the news a few days ago, that the premier spot for development in Oakland County in 1995 would be the City of Novi and Novi would be number one. He said that having been said, they went over the numbers in light of the Master Plan and the Goals and Objectives that they were trying to achieve, not only as a Planning Commission, but also as a City as a whole and that included the City Council.


Chairman Clark said they have long represented to the residents of this City who were here, to those who have come in, to those who have contemplated and were contemplating coming here, that this was a quality community and to achieve a quality community and to maintain a quality community, they must be willing to pay for it.


Chairman Clark said given the development that was now on Grand River, one of the biggest items that they have was the Grand River Corridor, Design and Engineering Study, and they did their rankings and he felt initially, that was certainly not one of the highest items on his priority list, but he re-thought it and reflected on it and just personally now he would probably put it as no. 1 now.


Chairman Clark said if they don't deal with Grand River and do some proper planning on Grand River, which was the central corridor through their City, they would have some serious regrets. He felt if they want quality, they have to be willing to pay for it. He said they cannot buy quality on the cheap, and if they do not pay for quality and pay less, then they would get something less than quality and he didn't think that was what the members of this community expect.


Chairman Clark said they expect quality and were willing to pay for it and they have to be willing to make the expenditures now that would maintain Novi as a quality community, especially in light of the development that was now coming on line on Grand River. He said for example with Vic's, they saw the Novi Pavilion project that night and that was simply going to generate more quality development and also up-grading some of the existing development that was there.


Chairman Clark said they have to be willing to pay for it and Mr. Wahl was correct, they hashed the numbers out and felt it would be appropriate to take the Budget that was proposed and go to the Council and argue vigorously in support of it.


Member Hoadley said he sat on the committee meetings with Chairman Clark, and he thought at the last meeting he attended, he had rated the Grand River Corridor Design and Engineering as no. 1 and still did. He said regarding this particular item, if they have to give up anything, that would be the last thing he would want to give up because he did think it was important to their future and it was going to get more expensive every year.


Member Hoadley said it couldn't be put off and for some of the other items, if they had to put them off, they probably could, but they came up with those nine items out of the 17-18 items which they originally looked at, and they zeroed out a lot of them that they thought they could postpone, but for the ones they have left that were on the list, they all felt were necessary to start on that year.


Member Hoadley said he was not a person who wants to negotiate against himself, and he felt the $247,869 was realistic, and he firmly believed that was what they should go to the Council with and be able to back it up with this report.


Member Lorenzo said she would like to know what they were being asked to do that night. Mr. Wahl explained what they need was a recommendation from the Planning Commission. He said first of all, he has submitted this existing Budget to the Administration for the purpose of them setting up all the computerized information on the Budget process as of early in February.


Mr. Wahl said however they need a policy decision from the Commission as to exactly what it was they were requesting so they could make that a formal submittal and then all of the documentation would be put into those big notebooks that the Council reviews and that information would go forward to the City Council.


Mr. Wahl said it has been the practice of the Administration to take a look at the Budget, and perhaps recommend cuts and it was not like cutting dump trucks or police equipment because the Planning Commission was a decision-making body, not a department.


Mr. Wahl said so he wasn't quite certain how the Manager or Finance Director would deal with it this year. He said last year or a few years ago, they did recommend basically to keep the Budget at what it was the year before.


Mr. Wahl said what he was looking for was a decision on the part of the Commission that this was their Budget and they were recommending it and sending it forward to City Council and the Administration.


It was then,


Moved by Member Hodges

Seconded by Member Weddington



To recommend the Budget to the City Council and the Administration.





Member Mutch said given what was stated about trying to keep to a 4% or less increase, was she right in understanding that would mean if they did that, they wouldn't be requesting more than $131,000 and Mr. Wahl said yes. She said if they were to do that then obviously something like the Grand River Corridor Study was out of the question.


Member Mutch said she agreed with Chairman Clark and Member Hoadley, that it was a critical area in terms of planning. She said it was an area under active change right now and it was not just sitting out like Napier Road was, waiting for future development but everything that happens there impacts the rest of the City in a dramatic way, and she wasn't talking about the facade designs and things like that, but traffic alone was a major consideration.


Member Mutch said when she looked at the study items and tried to rank them, she also looked at them in terms of she would rather not start something at all if they lose the Budget battle, than to do it piecemeal. She said she would like to see the City Council commit to having the Commission do the Grand River Corridor Study, but she also didn't want to do that and sacrifice everything else, which was what the Budget reality would be if they were restricted to a figure of $131,000 and obviously they could do something beyond that.


Member Mutch said but if they throw in $91,000 for Consultants Fees, that does not leave them a lot of money and they may only have $30,000-$40,000 to work with and they wouldn't even get half of the work done that they say needs to be done.


Member Mutch felt Member Lorenzo made some good arguments in a previous special meeting, that some consideration, some weight should be given to the implementation of work that has already been done and she had that in mind when she did her ranking. She said on the other hand, she thought the facts that they were accumulating, as opposed to implementing, were two things hard to balance.


Member Mutch said if they only collect facts and then let them sit there while they go and spend three more years collecting more facts in other areas, that data was not going to do them any good in the end by the time they get around to using it.


Member Mutch said as far as Grand River goes, she was persuaded by their argument, but she would like to see them be successful in convincing Council that that was important and needs to be done to the extent that they would fund this, but not to the extent that the Commission sacrifices other things.


Member Bonaventura said he was also impressed with Member Lorenzo's viewpoint at the last special meeting they had on this matter. He said he felt that it was part of their responsibility to work with Council and in this case, it was part of their job to face facts on what the Budget was going to be and to do some of what he considers to be their work and not Council's work.


Member Bonaventura said if they ever watch the Council in action on the Budget, it was not a pretty sight and it was not an easy job, and he considers them volunteers too, just as the Commissioners were, and he felt they would be shirking their responsibility of what they were suppose to do, which he felt was to bring the Council a predictable number and what they want, so they don't have to guess at it.


Member Mutch said she wasn't sure what was just said and was Member Bonaventura saying that he supports this figure they were requesting and saying it was a realistic estimation of what they think should be done.


Member Bonaventura asked if she was referring to the $247,000 figure and she said yes, and Member Bonaventura said no. He indicated that was not a realistic figure to him. He said idealistically, yes, but realistically no, so his opinion was that they start cutting on their own and give the Council some numbers that they know would be acceptable.


Member Mutch said when he said the Commission should do their job, not theirs, was he saying that part of their job was cutting as opposed to setting priorities and saying this was what they really want to do and then letting the Council make the Budget decisions, whether they cut them or cut elsewhere in the City Budget.


Member Bonaventura said he felt it was part of their responsibility to hand the Council an acceptable Budget and he felt the reality of what those numbers were going to be were obvious from what they know was going on on the Council, going on with the Budget, and what they did last year.


Member Mutch said perhaps he could make a suggestion as to what would put them in the ballpark as to what he considers reasonable. Member Bonaventura asked Member Lorenzo if she would repeat the numbers she had stated last week as he couldn't remember them.


Member Lorenzo explained what she basically did was to pare the studies down to $40,000 precisely and in order of priority, there was the Zoning Ordinance Review and Update, the Thoroughfare Plan and Data Collection Analysis, the Wildlife Habitat Master Plan, and then split the balance between the Town Center Planning and the Communications and Liaison Committee.


Member Bonaventura asked which gave a Budget figure of what and Member Lorenzo said a Budget of $131,000 including the Consultants' fees.


Chairman Clark said he respected everyone's opinion and everyone was entitled to their opinion. He felt though what they would find was they could always come down in negotiations when negotiating with someone, but they couldn't go back up. He said if a person starts by cutting off one of their legs, it was hard to stand if someone was trying to cut off the other one and that was the practical realities of the situation.


Chairman Clark said he couldn't put it any simpler than that, and again it gets back to what he said earlier and he didn't expect everyone to agree with him, and they keep talking on this Commission and they watch the Council meetings as well, and many times they have seen members of the Council say Novi was a quality community and they don't approve something that wasn't quality and the City could not buy quality on the cheap.


Chairman Clark said they would get exactly what they were willing to pay for or they would get something else and what they get then may not be what they want, but they would be stuck with it. He said if they wait to seriously consider for example doing some serious planning on the Grand River Corridor until every parcel was ready to be developed or plans were in front of them to develop it, they may not like what they get, but at that point in time, it would be too late and they would have to live with the consequences.


Member Hoadley said he agreed with Chairman Clark and he has been a negotiator all of his life and you do not negotiate against yourself. He said they have already negotiated against themselves before they came up with the studies that they think were the most essential to the proper planning of this community and he disagreed with Member Bonaventura and he felt they would be remiss to do anything other than present this Budget as they have it in this packet.


Member Hoadley said particularly this Grand River Study and to him, that was the number one priority and if they put it off now, it was going to be $75,000 next year and $85,000 the year after and so on and he would question when would they ever do it. He said also looking back in the Budget history, they have been all over the map and they have had $250,000 Budgets and $300,000 Budgets in the past ten years, so he just felt they would be cutting their throats to do anything other than to go for it. He felt they have to put the ball in the Council's court and if they want to cut it, then that was their prerogative, but for the Commission to cut it in advance was foolish.


Chairman Clark said also they should remember as Member Hoadley just pointed out, it wasn't too long ago where the Budgets were in the range that they were talking about and they were nowhere as busy as they were now and they had their hands full then. He said now they were going to be the busiest community in terms of development in all of Oakland County and they couldn't always be reacting and sometimes they have to take a proactive position because it was in the best interest of their community in the long run to do that.


Member Mutch asked about the process and she agreed with the Chairman that it was part of their job to say those were the things, that in their judgement knowing what they know, were important to the Commission and important to the decision-making process and important to the community that those things be done.


Member Mutch felt it was also important to Council because they depend on recommendations from the Commission that presumedly the Commission has spent a little more time looking at, than they have had the opportunity to do.


Member Mutch said in any case, it seems to her it was part of their responsibility to not only make a request that reflects the priorities that they have, meaning that they think that a certain number of studies should be done and a certain number of Consultants should be retained and the kind of Administrative support that this Commission needs to function, but that it was also important that they do what they could do to persuade them how seriously they think it was for those studies to be done and not just give them a composite priority list.


Member Mutch asked what was the process in terms of this information going to Council and was there an opportunity in a joint session or joint presentation by the Chairman to make the case for the priorities that the Planning Commission itself has established or do they depend upon Administrative presentation.


Chairman Clark said no. He indicated that he and other members of the Commission for the last Budget went in front of the Council and argued for their position and that was what they would have to do this time.


Member Mutch felt they should arrive at some sort of agreement as to what the position was that they would be arguing for, however the majority of the Commission would like to see the Commission represented, and if the Commission chooses to allow for some sort of minority viewpoint that would be fine, and that goes beyond the discussions that were recorded here and she didn't have any problem with that, but she would hope they wouldn't have individual Commissioners arguing against the results of a composite point of view.


Chairman Clark said the Council was going to have their Minutes just as they have Council's Minutes, so they would know what the Commission's respective positions were and also the arguments and concerns of the individual members of the Commission.


Chairman Clark said they have to take a position as a Commission as a whole that they have a motion on the table now to present the Budget as it was presently proposed to the Council for the coming fiscal year, so they have to decide first of all, whether or not they want to support that motion.



Member Lorenzo said as she stated at their special meeting last Wednesday, she may have an individual point of view, but she was certainly willing to support the majority in a team spirit manner. She said the only thing she would ask was that in making their case on this Budget, they request that the Council, if they so choose to make any cuts, would just cut a percentage of the total and let it come back to the Commission to redo their priority list instead of line-by-line item.


Member Hoadley called the question.



ROLL CALL VOTE: Clark (Yes), Hoadley (Yes), Hodges (Yes), Lorenzo (Yes), Mutch (Yes), Weddington (Yes), Bonaventura (Yes)







1. Road Report.

Report by James Wahl, Planning & Community Development Director and Rod Arroyo, Traffic/Planning Consultant Regarding the Ten Mile Road Widening and Taft Road Extension Projects.


2. Discussion of Letter from Fried, Levitt and Bugbee - (Added by Member Bonaventura).

The above two items were not discussed.





There being no further business before the Planning Commission, the meeting was adjourned at 12:25 P.M.







Steve Cohen

Planning Clerk


Transcribed by Sharon Hendrian

March 17, 1995