REGULAR MEETING OF THE NOVI PLANNING COMMISSION
WEDNESDAY, MAY 1, 1996 AT 7:30 P.M.
COUNCIL CHAMBER - NOVI CIVIC CENTER - 45175 W. TEN MILE ROAD
Meeting called to order at 7:30 p.m. by Chairperson Lorenzo.
PRESENT: Bonaventura, Bononi, Capello (arrived late), Hoadley, Hodges, Chairperson Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington.
ALSO PRESENT: Planning Consultant Brandon Rogers, Engineering Consultant David Bluhm, Traffic Consultant Rod Arroyo, Assistant City Attorney Dennis Watson, Landscape Architect Linda Lemke, Water Resources Specialist Susan Tepatti, Director of Planning and Community Development Jim Wahl, and Planning Aide Steven Cohen
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there were any changes or additions to the agenda. Member Hoadley stated that he wanted to add an item under Matters for Consideration; Scheduling of a Public Hearing for the Cellular Communications Towers.
PM-96-05-082 TO APPROVE THE AGENDA AS AMENDED
Moved by Weddington, seconded by Vrettas, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve agenda as amended.
Chairperson Lorenzo called for an oral vote and asked all those in favor of approving the Agenda as amended please signify by saying aye; those opposed say no.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-082 - MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Yes: Bonaventura, Bononi, Capello, Hoadley, Hodges, Chairperson Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that Item 1 under Public Hearings; Zoning Map Amendment 18.542/Society Hill, SP 95-44C, the applicant respectfully requested in writing that the item be postponed until May 15, 1996. In order for the applicant to meet the deadline for the May 15 meeting, the information would have already had to have been submitted to the consultants for review and this has not been done as of yet. Steve Cohen, Planning Aide, stated that the applicant is expected to bring plans in on Friday, May 3, 1996. Therefore Chairperson Lorenzo stated that next date would be the June 5, 1996 meeting. Chairperson Lorenzo asked the Commission to entertain a motion to postpone until June 5, 1996.
PM-96-05-083 TO POSTPONE THE PUBLIC HEARING FOR MAP AMENDMENT 18.542/SOCIETY HILL SP 95-44C TO JUNE 5, 1996
Moved by Weddington, seconded by Hodges, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To postpone the Public Hearing for Map Amendment 18.542/Society Hill To June 5, 1996.
Mr. Galvin asked to speak on the motion. He stated that his understanding from the last meeting with staff was that if he was able to file the necessary changes to the plans by May 3, he could then be placed on the May 15, 1996 agenda. He stated that with the changes that are being made he believes that he can make it for the May 15 meeting and respectfully asked that the motion be amended.
Steve Cohen, stated that his understanding is that the applicant may address the engineering concerns during the May 15, 1996 meeting but added that the woodlands issues may not be able to be addressed.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that it was her understanding that in conjunction with the engineering, there were questions relating to trees and wooded wetlands.
Member Hodges stated that she would like to support the June 5, 1996 date. She felt that exceptions could be made as necessary, but because this is a large plan she feels that it is necessary to give the staff and the consultants the time due. She further stated that rushing the process would not benefit anyone and that we need to stick to the ordinances.
Member Hoadley supported Member Hodges comments.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-083 - MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Yes: Bonaventura, Bononi, Hoadley, Hodges, Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington
Seeing no one, Chairperson Lorenzo closed the first Audience Participation stating that there will be a second Audience Participation after the midpoint break and a third before adjournment.
Member Weddington stated that she received one lengthy letter from an anonymous concerned citizen. The letter addressed the proposed expansion of the Novi-Northville Montessori Center. The letter was in opposition of the expansion stating that the building and the proposed expansion are too large for the size of the lot. There was also concern about the drop-off plan, the safety of children, current maintenance of the facility specifically cleanliness and fire hazards. Member Weddington stated that the letter will be on file for anyone who wishes to read it in its entirety.
Member Bonaventura stated that the Rules Committee should look into the acceptance of anonymous letters, stating that there is the possibility of misuse.
Member Vrettas supported Member Bonaventuras statement. He feels that the Commission would be falling into a dangerous practice with the acceptance of these types of letters.
Member Hoadley opposed stating that he would hate to restrict that. He feels that we would be denying timid citizens an opportunity to express their point of view.
Member Hodges stated that the City does accept letters from citizens who are non-residents of Novi and if we can accept these comments, she feels that anonymous should also be heard.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked the Commission to entertain a motion to send the issue of anonymous letters to the Rules Committee.
Member Bonaventura stated that he is not looking for a motion, however he will bring the issue up at the next Committee meeting.
1. Approval of the April 3, 1996 Regular Planning Commission Meeting Minutes.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there were any corrections or changes to these minutes. Seeing none she entertained a motion to approve the minutes as presented.
PM-96-05-084 TO APPROVE MINUTES AS PROPOSED
Moved by Member Vrettas, seconded by Bonaventura, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the April 3, 1996 Regular Planning Commission Meeting Minutes as presented
Chairperson Lorenzo called for an oral vote and asked for all those in favor of approving the April 3, 1996 Minutes, please signify by saying aye; those opposed say no.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-084 - MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Yes: Bonaventura, Bononi, Hodges, Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington, Hoadley
1. ZONING MAP AMENDMENT 18.551
Property located south of Nine Mile Road between Novi Road and the CSX Railroad. Possible recommendation to City Council for re-zoning from Light Industrial District (I-1) to General Business (B-3) or any other appropriate zoning district.
Brandon Rogers, Planning Consultant, referred to the maps attached to his report which reflected the areas behind Border Cantina, Big Alís Oil Change and Novi Auto Wash. Mr. Rogers reported that this area adjacent to the CSX Railway is presently vacant and zoned Light Industrial (I-1). This half acre parcel has been requested by petitioner Dennis Krestel for re-zoning from I-1 to B-3 district for the purpose of allowing off-street parking expansion.
The property along Novi Road is zoned B-3. The property east of the Railroad is zoned R-4 District. This particular triangle of parcel is recommended in the Master Plan for Land Use for Light Industrial use. Mr. Rogers stated that the property could not be used for parking to serve Border Cantina if it is zoned I-1 District, this is what triggered the request to petition for B-3 District.
The zoning district boundary between the I-1 District and R-4 District runs down the center line of the railroad easement which is 200 feet wide.
It was Mr. Rogersí opinion that parking to serve the existing businesses along Novi Road is a preferable use than making the property developable for industrial use as it is presently zoned and planned. Mr. Rogers stated that he reviewed the ordinance and concluded that the P-1 District may be more suitable, a recommendation to Council could be something other than B-3 District.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that to her, understanding the ordinance in order to rezone it to P-1 requires a conceptual drawing to accompany the zoning application for parking.
Applicant Dennis Krestel, Guido Associates, Inc., 24350 Orchard Lake Road, Farmington Hills, is representing the opponent and referred to the drawing he submitted. He stated that the area in question is designated, and that it is an ideal location for parking as it is quite isolated. The elevated railroad is a 100 foot right-of-way, just to the east of that is a 10-12 foot berm that protects the Riverbridge subdivision. There is a floodplain zone to the east side. The proposed 27 parking spaces are to the west of the floodplain. The only extension of any pavement into the floodplain has to do with access or aisle ways. This parking plan coupled with the existing parking plan of 72 spaces would meet ordinance requirementsí for any future expansion to the building. Mr. Krestel stated that he feels the land is most ideal for parking because of the location and the floodplain.
Chris Schultz, 21530 Novi Road, introduced himself as the attorney for Joseph Widak, the owner of the property in question. Mr. Schultz stated that at this time he has a lease application with the applicantís client to lease the property. He suggested the property be rezoned to B-3 so as not to preclude him from future use and development of the property. Mr. Schultz stated that P-1 is very restrictive and he would like to keep his future uses open so he recommends B-3.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there was anyone else who would like to address this Public Hearing. Seeing no one else she closed the Public Hearing and turned the matter over to the Commission for Discussion.
Member Hoadley stated that he did not think P-1 zoning could be considered because it was never advertised as such and he doesnít have enough information stating why it cannot remain industrial to even make a judgement on it.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that it was her understanding that parking, as being proposed, is not allowed in I-1.
Member Hoadley argued that the point he is trying to make, is that there is no information from the consultants or the Planning Department as to why it cannot remain I-1. It is Master Planned I-1. There is not enough evidence to make the proper judgement.
Brandon Rogers, referred to Page 2 of his report. He concluded after reviewing the requested purpose for the rezoning for off-street parking that this small triangular parcel can be used for parking if the floodplain area is not filled. Mr. Rogers stated that to squeeze in a small industrial use with the setback and the screening requirements seems to be less feasible.
Member Hoadley reiterated his comments regarding not having enough information as to why it cannot remain I-1 zoning.
Member Bononi stated she feels the question is more basic. She feels that the petitioner is asking for a parking use in a B-3 zone which is not a permitted principle use in this zone. If this site is to be used for parking, than P-1 is the appropriate zone usage because in that zone, parking is an allowed principle use. She stated that if the applicant wants B-3, that is his right, but she feels that it has been correctly interpreted by Mr. Rogers as the best and permitted use.
Member Hodges asked Mr. Rogers how the rezoning to P-1 would not constitute spot zoning. Brandon Rogers stated that the P-1 District Statement of Intent clearly indicates that it is for the parking of private passenger vehicles incidental to a principle use. It must be located adjacent to the non-residential district.
Member Hodges referred to the letter from the City Attorneyís office, it clearly states that because of the fact that the railroad easement is there, the property does abut a residential property. She stated that there is no evidence of a need for additional parking for Border Cantina and lastly, if a property owner cannot be heard over the recommendations or consultant concerns, she does not feel that we are giving the property owner the respect that is necessary. Member Hodges stated she cannot support this rezoning for these reasons.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that there are several options that can be taken but would like to take some action.
Member Hoadley stated that he is not opposed to rezoning to B-3 or P-1, he does not feel that there is proper evidence.
Member Capello asked Mr. Rogers if this property were zoned P-1, would there be a landscape berm required between the P-1 District and the residential district. Brandon Rogers responded that it would, unless it is waived for an alternate screening technique by the Planning Commission, which could be a wall or existing vegetation. Mr. Rogers further reported that this site has no regulated wetlands or woodlands on it.
Member Capello added that as the property sits now, it is to nobodyís benefit zoned as I-1. It is not buildable because of the configuration of the property size. He felt that it would benefit both the property owner and the residential district to have it rezoned to P-1, and add a berm and landscaping. For these reasons Member Capello made a motion for a positive recommendation to City Council regarding Zoning Map Amendment 18.551 to rezone the property from Light Industrial (I-1) to Vehicular Parking District (P-1). Motion was seconded by Member Weddington.
PM-96-05-085 TO SEND A POSITIVE RECOMMENDATION TO CITY COUNCIL TO RE-ZONE SUBJECT PROPERTY FROM LIGHT-INDUSTRIAL DISTRICT (I-1) TO VEHICULAR PARKING DISTRICT (P-1)
Moved by Capello, seconded by Weddington, CARRIED (6-3): To send a positive recommendation to City Council to rezone subject property from Light Industrial District (I-1) to Vehicular Parking District (P-1).
Member Vrettas stated that he has no problem supporting the rezoning from light industrial but he does have a problem rezoning to P-1 because the land owner would like to go with Local Business District (B-1) to give him better options. At this point he does not have a strong feeling toward either of the zonings.
Member Markham stated as she understands the ordinances, if a separate parcel were rezoned to B-3, it would not be a principle permitted use and therefore to rezone it and allow parking is really in violation of the ordinance. If parking is what is wanted with this piece of property, the appropriate zoning would be P-1.
Dennis Watson, stated that P-1 would limit the use of the property to a parking use. If it were rezoned to B-3, they could actually have a commercial use on the property.
Member Weddington agreed with Commissionerís Markham, Bononi and Capello. To further persuade the other commissioners, she stated that Border Cantina is one of her favorite restaurants and the last time she was there she had to park in the driveway. She stated that parking is sorely needed in this area, the unique situation here, is that this parcel is perfectly suited for parking, she stated that it is not well suited for anything else due to the current structure. She stated that she feels P-1 is the appropriate zoning at this time. For these reasons she supports the motion as stated.
Member Hoadley asked that since the owner of the land was opposed to P-1, would this become a City initiated rezoning if went with P-1. Dennis Watson replied that it does not make it a City initiated rezoning and if he understood the owners representative, they were not protesting a rezoning to P-1, rather, they preferred B-3 over P-1.
Member Hoadley asked the property ownersí attorney to clarify whether or not they are protesting the rezoning to P-1. Mr. Schultz stated that at this time Border Cantina has not purchased the property in question for rezoning, but they have repeatedly stated their intention to buy the piece of property. If Border Cantina buys the piece of property, they will be back in for a lot split. It was the opinion of Mr. Schultz and the property owner that B-3 is more suitable because it would be a continuously B-3 zoned piece, and in the event that Border Cantina does not buy the piece of property, it would not restrict the use of the property. It was Mr. Schultzís preference that the property be rezoned B-3 as opposed to P-1.
Member Hoadley stated again that he is not opposed to P-1, but he feels that the property should be rezoned B-3, which was what was applied for.
Rod Arroyo commented that if the property is rezoned to P-1, because this is an accessory district, it can be accessory parking for business or industrial. Therefore, if the sale of the property never takes place, and it is rezoned P-1, the land could eventually be used as parking for the industrial development to the north.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that if there is no one else, she will ask Mr. Cohen to call the roll and again the motion is to send a positive recommendation to City Council to rezone from I-1 to P-1.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-085 - MOTION CARRIED
Yes: Bononi, Capello, Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington
No: Hoadley, Hodges, Bonaventura
2. VICíS QUALITY FRUIT MARKET AND SPORTS TAVERN, SP94-02N
Property located south of Grand River Avenue, between Novi Road and Meadowbrook Road for possible recommendation to City Council for Revised Preliminary Site Plan and Revised Phasing Plan approval.
Jim Chen of Evergreen III, Inc., presented Phase II of the Main Street project. He stated that the size of the building has been changed from the original site plan due to the development of the market situation, as well as the demand from the potential tenants. The three major tenants are a micro-brewery instead of a sports bar, an oriental market, and a pet food store which are all located on the ground floor. The upper level is currently proposed as office space and there are no tenants. Mr. Chen further stated that there will be no changes to the site itself.
Brandon Rogers, Planning Consultant, stated that this is a permitted use in the TC-1 District. The most significant change from the prior use is the introduction of a micro-brewery pursuant to the amendment to the zoning ordinance allowing such use. Mr. Rogers further advised that he has provided a chart in his report that follows the guidelines for off street parking under the shared parking policy in the TC-1 District and determined that Phase II would require 221 spaces, including handicapped spaces. Mr. Rogers further advised that he has counted 250 spaces in the Phase II plan. (End of tape)
Mr. Rogers advised that Ms. Tepatti will comment on the replacement of the retention basin as there is an opportunity to tie into a storm sewer running through Main Street Village south along Trans-X. Mr. Rogers further advised that if the retention basin were to remain, there would still be 225 spaces available in the Phase II plan.
Mr. Rogers added that while the landscape plan for a preliminary site plan is customarily done at final site plan, he has had Ms. Lemke review the landscape requirements and most of her concerns have been resolved.
Mr. Rogers reported that the additional pedestrian lighting has been included and brick paving has been added in the most recent plan. Mr. Rogers further advised that the proposed building facades are drive it EIFS material on certain panels, with basically brick on all sides, and that certain metal panels are painted. Mr. Rogers also stated that there are a few courses of split faced block along the west side of the building, but he did not feel that this is a compatible material to the other materials that are being used. He suggested that perhaps this could be reconsidered and that a more ornamental material used.
Mr. Rogers also noted that there are two rooftop signs, one 4' x 36' and the other 4' x 38', advertising the micro-brewery. One is proposed for the north edge of the building near Grand River and the other is on the west side of the building at the south end. Mr. Rogers concluded by recommending preliminary site plan approval, with the condition that the phase plan revision includes the detention area within the Phase II boundaries.
Mr. Cohen advised that Mr. Bluhm had a prior commitment and he will arrive shortly.
Rod Arroyo, Traffic Consultant, advised that the access remains the same as it has been since Phase I. Mr. Arroyo reported that the primary access serving the building will be from Grand River through an existing driveway that currently serves Vicís property. Mr. Arroyo stated that an additional point of access is provided off of Market Street with a secondary point at the south end of Market Street. Mr. Arroyo indicated the existing volumes along Grand River are included in his report and that he has reviewed the shared parking with Mr. Rogers. Mr. Arroyo concurs with the changes that were recommended in Mr. Rogersí letter and further recommends approval of the preliminary site plan, subject to the clarification being made on the final site plan.
Linda Lemke, Landscape Architect, reported that they have worked very hard with the developerís landscape architect, Michael J. Dul and Associates, Inc. on this difficult site and she believes that they have developed a well prepared landscape plan.
Sue Tepatti, of JCK, commented that there are no direct wetland impacts involved with this portion of the development. However, Ms. Tepatti further advised that there is an existing sedimentation basin to the west of Vicís Market which is required to be permanent in nature. Ms. Tepatti further stated that there is also a temporary detention basin on the Tavern property and a small sediment basin to the south of the parking. In addition, Ms. Tepatti reported that the small sedimentation basin that is currently in place is connected to two catch basins that are existing in the parking lot and will remain in place as a permanent fixture. She then advised that it may also get some additional plantings enhancement and more incorporation into the existing mitigation area once the construction is completed. Ms. Tepatti reported that when the detention basin within the Tavern parking is taken off-line, the storm water will still be routed to the west into the existing large permanent sedimentation basin which is currently receiving the Vicís run off and will be headed south through the wetlands to the regional basin.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if that meant that all of the storm water will then be routed to a sedimentation basin prior to discharge into any of the wetlands? Ms. Tepatti replied that was correct and that it would be routed either to a small portion of the site in the south or to the majority of the site in the west. Chairperson Lorenzo further asked if both sedimentation basins are also water quality basins? Ms. Tepatti replied that was correct. Chairperson Lorenzo asked if Ms. Tepatti is saying that the one to the south will also be enhanced later on? Ms. Tepatti replied that they are currently waiting for more revisions to the Main Street Village plans which are incorporating some adjacent areas to the small southern sedimentation basin into their mitigation areas and they will be adding some plantings there.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked the Commission if they would like to wait for Mr. Bluhm or begin the Public Hearing? Chairperson Lorenzo stated that before the Public Hearing begins, she has a letter from Daniel W. Roy, Captain of the City of Novi Fire Department recommending approval. Chairperson Lorenzo opened the floor to the public for any comments. Seeing no one, she closed the Public Hearing and turned the matter over to the Commission for Discussion.
Member Hoadley stated that the packets were deficient in information regarding the wetlands. Chairperson Lorenzo interjected that Ms. Tepattiís report is a verbal report and as she understands it there were no direct impacts to the wetlands. Ms. Tepatti concurred. Member Hoadley asked if there are going to be some water added to the wetlands? Ms. Tepatti replied that he was correct and there is currently a storm system in place. Member Hoadley stated that three projects are now going to interdict the wetlands and he is wondering why the packet is deficient in regards to the previous information on Main Street Village in which there was a big debate over the amount of water going into the wetlands there. Member Hoadley believes that the Commission should have the opportunity to re-review the decision making process used for Novi Village.
Member Hoadley also stated that he is still as concerned with the parking as he was when it came before Commission for Vicís Market. Mr. Hoadley further stated that if the employees of Vicís Market were still parking in the proposed Phase II area, there is no information in the packet addressing the additional 75 cars and therefore, he questions the adequacy of the parking.
Mr. Chen reported that there had been a recent survey on the parking for Vicís Market. The survey was for the whole Main Street project and has been submitted to Rod Arroyo for review. Mr. Chen also reported that the parking demand at Vicís has stabilized and has dropped about 30%. Mr. Chen further advised that cars are no longer parking on the Phase II site.
Member Hoadley again stated that the information regarding parking should have been in the packets for the Commissionerís review. He then commented on the shared parking between Phase II and Vicís Market. He feels that there may be a need for more parking than originally proposed and stated that there is not enough information to make a judgement on it.
Member Hoadley reiterated that the City is proposing 220 parking spots and that Mr. Chen is providing 250. Member Hoadley advised that this would eliminate the detention area and he is not necessarily willing to do that. Member Hoadley went on to state that the situation is different from the Sports Tavern in that the foot print has been expanded by 15,000 square feet. It seems to Member Hoadley that it might require more parking than originally contemplated for shared parking. Member Hoadley further stated that people are not going park away from the projects, which means that the two projects will not lend themselves to any additional parking requirement that the balance of Main Street is going to have. Member Hoadley believes that the parking for these two projects will have to stand on their own and the Commission has to decide whether there is adequate parking for that situation. Member Hoadley is not certain that he has enough information to make a good judgement on that. Member Hoadley would like to look at the total use of what the development is going to be and he is sure that there is a formula for determining appropriate parking requirements.
Rod Arroyo, stated that the issue of shared parking was something that was proposed for this project since day one. Mr. Arroyo reported that the TC-1 ordinance allows for shared parking to be considered by the Planning Commission. On May 3, 1995, Mr. Chen received approval for a shared parking formula and as long as he followed this formula he would be able to move forward. Mr. Arroyo reported that this was the basis for the comments and the table that were submitted by Mr. Rogers and himself for the shared parking arrangement. Mr. Arroyo reported that he is comfortable with the formula and that Mr. Chen has followed it. Mr. Arroyo further reported that the proposed parking is consistent with the approved formula. Mr. Arroyo advised that the developer is not proposing to use parking spaces from the Main Street development and that everything shown on the site plan is going to be serving the Vicís building and the proposed building.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if the formula and proposal are to be considered conservative in terms of the number of parking spaces?
Mr. Arroyo replied that he and Mr. Rogers believe that it is consistent with what is reasonable, what is based on the national standards, and what is based on the study that was done at the time.
Dave Bluhm, of JCK, reported that a great deal, if not all, of the utilities have been installed as they were approved with the original site plan. Mr. Bluhm further reported that water mains and sanitary sewer services that currently service the site and stubs are in place to service the Phase II building. Mr. Bluhm added that the storm sewers are also in place on the site. According to Mr. Bluhm, the storm sewers collect drainage from Vicís and the proposed Phase II and then dump it into temporary detention basins in two locations. Mr. Bluhm advised that one exists just south and west of the building and the second location is at the SW corner of the Main Street/Market Street area. Mr. Bluhm further advised that both basins function to serve both phases of the development. Mr. Bluhm stated that from there, the storm water is directed into the wetland that is on the west side of the Main Street Village proposal. Mr. Bluhm advised that as a result of past plans, the City has initiated improvements to the down stream conveyance channels into the regional C&O Basin approximately one quarter mile down stream. It is the intent with this development to eliminate detention from these two basins and to convey the storm water through the Main Street Village site and through the storm sewers that will be put in by the City or with the Main Street Village project. Mr. Bluhm further advised that all detention for this area and other areas in the Main Street location will be provided in the C&O Basin. Mr. Bluhm reported that it is their opinion that instead of having several basins handling storm water, it makes more sense to have the regional facility handle the storm water for this area. In addition, Mr. Bluhm stated that he believed that on the original preliminary plan, that the southwest basin (Main Street/Market Street) was intended to be used for sedimentation and for permanent water quality upon completion. Mr. Bluhm advised that Mr. Rogers has mentioned that the parking on the basin immediately on the site is not necessary and therefore, it can remain for sedimentation and water quality purposes as another measure to protect the downstream wetland area before it goes into the conveyance channel to the regional storm water system. Mr. Bluhm added one additional component and advised that there is a small sedimentation basin immediately south of the site which is intended to pick up the storm water flows from the building itself for the development. Mr. Bluhm reported that the sedimentation basin will be there on a permanent basis and will function as a water quality basin that directs small flows to the existing wetland directly south of the development. Mr. Bluhm concluded by stating that he recommends approval.
Member Vrettas would like to make a motion to send a positive recommendation to City Council for the revised preliminary site plan and the revised phasing plan. Member Capello seconded the motion.
PM-96-05-086 TO SEND A POSITIVE RECOMMENDATION TO CITY COUNCIL FOR THE REVISED PRELIMINARY SITE PLAN AND THE REVISED PHASING PLAN
Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Capello, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To send a positive recommendation to City Council for the Revised Preliminary Site Plan and Revised Phasing Plan.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that it has been moved and seconded to send a positive recommendation to City Council for the revised preliminary site and the revised phasing plan. Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there was discussion on the motion.
Member Weddington reiterated her original concerns about Vicís when it first came in as a "whale of a building and a sea of parking." Member Weddington is glad to see that this building is at least being moved closer to Grand River, but she still has a number of concerns. She stated that from the earlier concept discussions, she understood that this would be a pedestrian oriented development and she just doesnít see it developing as a downtown pedestrian friendly environment. Furthermore, Member Weddington stated that the types of proposed uses are not well integrated with each other and they border on the types that might be found in strip malls. Member Weddington also expressed concern about the facades on all sides of the building and she does not want the view from any direction to be short-changed. Member Weddington concluded by stating that she is also concerned with the proposed large signage and trusts that the ZBA will look closely at it.
Before proceeding, Chairperson Lorenzo asked Member Vrettas, who made the motion, if he would like to bring this back for final. Member Vrettas replied that based upon what Member Weddington has just stated, that he would, conditional upon his seconder.
Member Capello asked if it is brought back for final after City Councilís action? Mr. Watson advised that the Commission is actually making a recommendation to Council to bring it back and that will be up to the Council as to whether they do that or not.
Member Capello agreed with Member Weddington that this facet of Main Street is similar to a strip center and that they have been trying to avoid that. Member Capello advised that positive things have happened as a result of the Town Center Steering Committee and that initially, Phase II did look like a strip center. Member Capello further advised that by doing these various steps, they are hoping to bring in different facades to get a different picture while driving down Grand River. Member Capello stated that hopefully when the SAD begins and the Grand River improvements come into effect, the parking lot is not going to be as obvious as it is now. Member Capello advised that this was all that could be done with this particular piece of property in trying to fit Vicís into the downtown district. Member Capello believes that the rest of Main Street will not take form like this particular part of it.
Member Bononi expressed two areas of concern. One is that the applicant is assured that he will have enough parking spaces for this use so that the development will be successful. Member Bononi stated that her concern is based on how much the parking has been cut down. Her second concern is about the lack of wetlands information submitted. She strongly believes that for what is being proposed, there should have been a wetland application from the standpoint of the impact on the wetlands and that the project is a multiple site area which will be drained partially by way of wetlands at least some of the time. In addition, Member Bononi is concerned that the detention basins have only been sized as far as capacity to accommodate a ten-year storm event and that there is a possibility for potential flooding to the existing wetlands. Member Bononi advised that there are often storm events that are more intense in the ten-year storm. Member Bononi referred to the review standards in Section 12.174 of the wetland ordinance, which states that the following standard shall govern the granting or denial of a permit. Member Bononi is mostly interested in the proposed activity and that it shall not threaten public health or safety by increasing flooding, erosion, siltation, pollution, or storm water run off volumes. Secondly, Member Bononi sited Section 3 which states that the proposed activity should not necessarily alter the natural grade or soils of any wetland or watercourse or alter the flow of surface or sub-surface water to or from the wetland at any season of the year. Member Bononi stated that it doesnít take much to conclude that the wetland area, especially the area to the south, has the potential to be adversely affected. Member Bononi further believes the application shows a lack of sensitivity to this. Member Bononi advised that it is not known whether or not the applicant was required to have a permit. Member Bononi also stated concerns regarding the route that the storm water will take once it has been detained and/or treated in the sedimentation basins. Member Bononi believes that the ultimate site is almost one half mile away and asked what will happen to all of the water in the interim? She also asked what the capacity is for these two developments, not to mention what the additional development will generate?
Member Bononi also believes it is important to know who the owners of the property to the south of this property are because they could also be affected by the drainage situation. Member Bononi further stated she has concerns about how this wetland area can be expected to handle this discharge and that the Community Impact Statement does not give a lot of information. Member Bononi sited page four of the Impact Statement and stated that there are several comments concerning environmental concerns. Member Bononi advised that it states that ecologically, the development will not affect the area environments since the subject site has been prepared with infrastructure resulting from previous site plan approval. (End of tape) Member Bononi went on to state that the number of wildlife designations that are shown in the statement only include small birds and mammals. Member Bononi reported that there is no mention of amphibians, plant life, or any of the effects that storm events could have on trees and shrubbery. Member Bononi is not satisfied that the wetlands issue was even addressed and reiterated that she is disappointed that there is not a formal application.
Sue Tepatti responded that there was a formal application made under the original Vicís Market plan and there was a wetland permit issued that covered the storm water discharges in the construction of the basin. Ms. Tepatti asked the Commission to recall that at earlier meetings, the sedimentation basins were required to remain permanent in nature and turned into water quality basins. Ms. Tepatti also advised that the issues were also discussed at length with regard to the Main Street Village project. Furthermore, Ms. Tepatti stated that she, Dave Bluhm, and the engineers have met with the developerís wetland consultant and reviewed the issues in detail regarding the effects and whether or not water should be detained in the wetlands, on basins, or in flow through situations. Ms. Tepatti reported that those issues have been addressed and the reason this plan did not require a permit is that the permit has already been issued and the impact to the wetlands are already in place. Ms. Tepatti concluded by stating that the storm water discharges that require a permit have already been constructed and the basins are already in place, constructed, and vegetated.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked Mr. Bluhm to address some of the drainage issues, particularly in regards to back water effects. Dave Bluhm reported that the requirements for the detention are ten-year storm events as per the Design and Construction Standards and anything beyond that is intended to naturally flow into areas that are low wetlands. Mr. Bluhm further reported that the developer is meeting those standards. Mr. Bluhm advised that there were some concerns when they began evaluating this regional detention concept as opposed to individual site basins. Mr. Bluhm reported that he, Linda Lemke, Chris Pargoff, and Sue Tepatti looked closely at whether the impacts to improving the regional storm water system, that is the over land flow and the storm sewer flow down to the basin, were going to be more of an impact than the site basins would be. Mr. Bluhm reported that they collectively determined that this was the correct route and that it follows the storm water master plan. Mr. Bluhm further reported that they felt it was a win-win situation.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked what the impacts would be to the wetlands, in terms of flooding beyond a ten-year storm? Mr. Bluhm replied that the conveyance channel for the regional basin is designed to handle a one hundred-year storm. Mr. Bluhm stated that the temporary basins on site for Vicís are only designed to handle a ten-year storm. Mr. Bluhm further advised that the regional conveyance channel and the storm sewers that take the water to the regional basin and the regional basin volume is designed to a hundred-year storm.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there will be increased water and a negative impact in the wetlands from storms greater than a ten-year? Mr. Bluhm responded that as in any conveyance situation there will be a short duration increase in storm waters. Mr. Bluhm further stated that at the point where the storm water is released from the site, there is an open body of water that is very extensive. Downstream from that, there is also a channel that will be improved to handle the water that will be deposited into that wetland area. Any rise in that wetland will be very short duration and will be very shallow within 2-3 inches and not more than 4-5 hours in a heavy downpour and the water level will regain its natural elevation in very short order. Mr. Bluhm further explained that because the conveyance channel is designed for a 100-year storm, it actually enables it to carry that water away and with a 10-year storm, the water is detained in there and it is held back.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that therefore, the wetlands are not being used as detention or retention areas, but as flow through areas. Mr. Bluhm replied that is correct.
Member Hoadley disagreed with Rod Arroyo in regards to shared parking. Member Hoadley asked the Commission to recall that the original plan called for 2,051 spaces. Member Hoadley further reported that Mr. Chen added another 400-500 spaces to that figure, but the area that he is servicing is at the other end of Main Street. Member Hoadley asked how this cannot be considered as an expanded footprint when the original shared parking was for a 3,000 square foot building and it is now a 45,000 square foot building? He also stated that if the retention basin is kept on the site it would reduce the parking down to 225 spaces and he has not heard anything yet that would make him want to pave it. Member Hoadley reported that no information has been provided in regards to the Main Street Village impact and although it was discussed, he had forgotten about how that was going to raise the water table in the wetlands. Member Hoadley further stated that Vicís and the proposed project will raise it more. Member Hoadley advised that although there was not a vote at a Town Center Steering Committee meeting, they reviewed the sign issue and one of the comments made by many of the committee members was that the roof signage for the micro-brewery would not be acceptable. Chairperson Lorenzo interjected that the signage is not part of their review and that it is a Building Department function. Member Hoadley replied that it is a part of the facade tonight and he does not know if that has any impact if the Commission approves it with the sign on the roof or not. Chairperson Lorenzo replied that they are not approving the sign. Member Hoadley asked if it was part of the motion? Chairperson Lorenzo replied that it is not. Member Hoadley concluded by stating that there should be further discussion regarding the paving of the retention area before he can make a vote.
Sue Tepatti stated that the current existing sedimentation detention basin is in operation on this property and has been looked at by Dave Bluhm, the engineers, and herself regarding whether it should be temporary or permanent in nature. From the sedimentation basin standpoint, the existing basin to the west, would be adequate to handle the sedimentation and water quality concerns on a permanent basis. Ms. Tepatti advised that
the basin will be in place during part of the construction until the downstream improvements are made and after construction is complete, there should not be any sedimentation concerns as it is more a water quality situation.
Member Hoadley asked why it is required in the first place? Ms. Tepatti replied that it is more for a detention basin than a sedimentation basin at the current time and Dave Bluhm can comment on that.
Member Hoadley asked if the original approval required that the detention basin be permanent? Dave Bluhm reported that the detention was to be temporary and he believed that it was always intended to be permanently maintained as a water quality basin and once the downstream improvements are made, it will no longer be necessary for detention. Mr. Bluhm further stated that they donít feel that it is necessary for sedimentation or water quality either, but it can continue to be used that way if necessary.
Member Hoadley asked if that was a condition of the original approval for Vicís and for the Main Street Village? Mr. Bluhm responded that it was a part of the original plan as a temporary detention basin. Member Hoadley replied that if that information was in the packet, he would not have had to ask these questions.
Member Hoadley asked Mr. Chen if he was certain that 250 spaces are all that he is going to need in regard to parking, based on the increased footprint. Mr. Chen answered that based upon what they are designing right now and the different studies that have been reviewed, he is very certain that the parking is adequate. Mr. Chen further stated that they have been working diligently and conservatively with the Cityís consultant in regards to the parking and have compromised in good faith.
Rod Arroyo responded to Member Hoadleyís comment regarding the increased size in the footprint of the building and how it affects the parking. He stated that the beauty of the shared parking formula is that it is flexible and as they have increased the size of the footprint, they had to provide more parking to account for the increase. Mr. Arroyo advised that the plan does include more parking than would have been required than if they had come in with their smaller footprint. Mr. Arroyo reported that there is adequate parking and the applicant has gone beyond the minimum. In addition, Mr. Arroyo stated that he has just has done some rough calculations by considering the size of the proposed building and treating it as a worse case scenario as all retail and then applied one of the most generally recognized national standards for parking. According to his calculations and without any credit for shared parking, Mr. Arroyo reported that the parking exceeds the national standard.
Member Hoadley asked Mr. Arroyo how he can rationalize his statement given that this development combined are about 120,000 square feet when there are 125,000 square feet of commercial development on Haggerty Road requiring 600-800 parking spots. Rod Arroyo rationalized by responding that the current ordinance requires too much parking and there will be a recommendation to change the standard with a zoning ordinance revision.
Member Bonaventura asked if the Town Center Steering Committee has discussed this matter? Chairperson Lorenzo responded that they have had one brief meeting about the plans, but they had not been presented to the consultantís for review. All the Committee had was a basic preliminary site plan with no . . . .
Member Capello interjected by stating that is not a fair statement. He further advised that the plans have been in front of them several times and although the final plan has not, variations of the plan have come before the Town Center Committee for years.
Member Bonaventura asked if the Committee concentrated basically on the site plan or possibly on the facade or architecture style, or both? Member Capello stated that they looked at everything and furthermore, they were looking at the site plan because that really drove the facade. Member Capello advised that if it were a rectangular box, the facade looked like a strip center.
Member Bonaventura asked if the revised preliminary site plan included a sketch of the facade? Brandon Rogers answered, yes, for all four facades.
Member Bonaventura asked if the materials have been reviewed and are they acceptable?
Mr. Rogers replied that he has included that in his report with some exception to the nominal use of split face block, but it can be easily remedied.
Member Bonaventura commented that the plan is basically how he envisioned Main Street to be, but asked if at this point on the preliminary, do they have to come in with this? Mr. Rogers replied that they do and the facades will be reviewed again at final. Mr. Rogers advised that depending upon what the Council does, they will be fine tuning the facades.
Member Bonaventura likes the detail of the plan and the different facades from building to building that simulates being constructed in different years and the industry style of the brewery. Member Bonaventura asked if the flagpoles in front of Vicís Market are a part of the revised preliminary site plan. Mr. Rogers replied that they are not shown on the site plan. Member Bonaventura asked if that issue has ever been resolved. Mr. Rogers cannot recall if it went before the ZBA or not. Chairperson Lorenzo interjected that she believes that is a separate issue. Member Bonaventura replied that is what he is asking Brandon and that the flagpoles were never on the original site plan. Mr. Rogers replied that they should be on the final plan. Member Bonaventura asked if someone should be advised?
Mr. Rogers replied that this is a preliminary site plan, but perhaps Mr. Chen knows.
Member Capello commented that Town Center Steering Committee has specifically asked Mr. Chen if he is going to build the buildings consistent with these types of architectures and he continually says that he is.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that if there are no more questions, she will ask Mr. Cohen to call the roll and again the motion is for a positive recommendation to City Council for revised preliminary site plan and revised phasing plan for Vicís Quality Fruit Market and Sports Tavern, SP 94-02N.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-086 - MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Yes: Capello, Hoadley, Hodges, Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington, Bonaventura, Bononi
Chairperson Lorenzo announced that the Commission will take a ten minute break.
Chairperson Lorenzo opened the floor for Audience Participation
An unnamed gentleman, spoke in regard to the widening of Ten Mile Road. He expressed his concern on Ten Mile Road from Meadowbrook Road to Novi Road, when he pulls out onto Ten Mile Road, before he can get into the middle of the road, there is a car right on his tail. He also expressed concern in regard to a pond located in the Orchard Hills Subdivision where he resides. He stated that if he were to build a pool in his backyard, he would have to fence it in and wanted to know why there is no restriction to have a fence around that pond. He stated that when it rains the water sits in the pond for days at a time at least 2-5 feet deep. He stated that if a small toddler drowns, let the minutes show that the City of Novi was warned due to his statement today.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that he could contact Jim Wahl in the Planning and Community Development Department tomorrow morning to discuss his concerns. She also asked the man to see Steve Cohen before he leaves this evening and give him his name.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there was anyone else who would like to address the Commission. Seeing no one she closed Audience Participation and moved into Matters For Consideration.
MATTERS FOR CONSIDERATION
1. NOVI PLACE SP 94-30E
Property located north of Eight Mile Road west of Haggerty Road for possible Final Site Plan approval.
Norman Hyman, 2290 First National Building, Detroit, representing the petitioner. Mr. Hyman stated that a number of changes have been made in the plan to meet conditions imposed by the Planning Commission body and to meet comments and suggestions made by the consultants. He made reference to Member Hoadleyís concerns regarding the traffic movements at the Chiliís drive and the suggestion that movements into or out of the drive should be restricted. Mr. Hyman stated that he has taken Member Hoadleyís suggestion and has gone one step further to restrict movements both in and out. He stated that as he understands it, a general understanding was reached and that all of the conditions of the consultants had been complied with.
Brandon Rogers, Planning Consultant, stated that he found all requirements to be answered. Facade plans for the free standing restaurant had been provided, although the name is still uncertain, the phasing plan has been indicated in a clearer fashion, site line drawings have been provided, and facade materials comply with Section 2520 of the ordinance. Mr. Rogers recommended Final Site Plan approval and Phasing approval.
Dave Bluhm, of JCK, stated that all of the minor comments that he had at the previous meeting have been addressed and the engineering plans are acceptable for approval. The applicant has provided the mitigation plan necessary and stated that Sue Tepatti will go into detail regarding that. He stated that he is currently putting the finishing touches on reviewing the easement document that will provide the area for mitigation, and with minor revisions, it will be in place. Beyond that, Mr. Bluhm is recommending approval.
Rod Arroyo, Traffic Consultant, stated that he has also reviewed the Final Site Plan and addressed a few key comments. As a condition of the Preliminary Site Plan approval, the Hilton entryway is one way in only and this has been shown on the Final Site Plan. At the suggestion of the Planning Commission, the applicant has moved forward with discussions with the Road Commission for Oakland County about a traffic signal at the Hilton location. There is also an alternate plan which would provide for two-way movement to the Hilton drive and a reconstruction of that with the traffic signal if the Road Commission approves the signal. The staff of the Road Commission has indicated that they are going to make a positive recommendation that a signal be placed at that location, but it is up to the Board of Commissioners to approve it. Mr. Bluhm stated that this looks very positive. The applicant is now recommending a right-turn in and right-turn out with appropriate signage for the Chiliís entryway. In addition, Mr. Arroyo stated that there were concerns regarding internal signage to encourage people to exit Orchard Hill Place Drive from the site rather than trying to go through Chiliís or other alternate locations. He stated that the internal signage has been included on the plan which he believes conforms with what was asked for with the Preliminary Site Plan. Mr. Arroyo recommended approval of the Final Site Plan.
Linda Lemke, Landscape Architect, stated that the landscaping for this site was complex because of the number of tree replacements, as well as tree requirements to meet the standards of the landscaping section of the Zoning Ordinance. Ms. Lemke stated that the plan has gone through many revisions and has now satisfied all of her concerns. She had two concerns about the woodlands, one being the grading around tree #193 and the second being the overhead electric pole by the historic tree. She stated that she is confident that both items can be addressed and would like to make both of these a part of her conditions of which she has four (4). Ms. Lemke stated that she is within "feet" of agreeing with the revised grading around tree #193, the other three conditions are standard conditions for location of protective fencing and bonding. As such, she recommended approval.
Chris Pargoff, City Forester, stated that he is also recommending conditional approval of the Final Site Plan. One condition recommends that the high voltage electric line at the rear of the project remain in its current figuration. This means that the location will be the same, but it may go up and down, depending on the engineering necessary for Detroit Edison to accommodate the current location. The applicant has agreed to work with Detroit Edison to accommodate this request.
Sue Tepatti, of JCK, stated that as everyone is aware, the applicant had an outstanding requirement for the construction of a one (1) acre wetland as mitigation for previous fill many years ago. The applicant has received approval for a wetland mitigation plan and has hired a wetland consultant to prepare it. Ms. Tepatti stated that the engineering department has approved the grading for the site. The wetland bond has been agreed upon and is being posted to cover the cost of that construction. A preservation easement has been drafted and is being drawn up at this time. Ms. Tepatti stated that there are no objections to the proposed plan and have approved it from the wetlands review.
Chairperson Lorenzo noted for the record that she has received a letter from Daniel W. Roy, Captain of the City of Novi Fire Department and that the above plan has been reviewed and approval is recommended.
Chairperson Lorenzo then turned the matter over to the Commission for Discussion.
PM-96-05-087 FOR APPROVAL OF THE FINAL SITE PLAN WITH THE CONDITIONS MENTIONED BY THE CONSULTANTS
Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Hoadley. CARRIED (7-2): To approve the final site plan subject to all of the consultants verbal and written comments.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there was any discussion on the motion.
Member Bonaventura asked Rod Arroyo, what the estimated trip generated per day on the weekend was. Rod Arroyo, reported that retail trips totaled 10, 561 on Saturday and 5,539 on Sunday.
Member Bonaventura asked Mr. Rogers if this project was originally granted special land use in order to develop. Brandon Rogers stated that the retail business and the restaurant were granted special land use approval after meeting certain standards.
Member Bonaventura stated that he fundamentally was against a special land use and that he cannot support this project. He personally thought that the Traffic Consultantsí comments about the traffic improvements with this project than if it were never built, struck him as bazaar. He went on to say that he cannot support a project of this size at Haggerty and Eight Mile Road because of the extreme burden on our community, as well as the surrounding communities.
Member Bononi asked the applicant what the time frame was for constructing the mitigated wetland area. Jeff Sobel, 30800 Northwestern Highway, Farmington Hills, stated that the time frame was worked out in the agreement with the City of Novi. He futher stated that although administration approval was denied at their last meeting, they were granted six months for mitigation. Mr Sobel explained that if mitigation is not completed, there is a bond in place so that the City may step in and complete the wetland if they so desire. Mr. Sobel further explained that the hope is that the owners would find a more suitable piece of property both to them and the City. If none is found or offered, if the City deems it in their best interest, then they will act to create the wetland here permanently.
Member Bononi asked if she understood correctly to say that the City would actually do the work. Mr. Sobel replied, no, but there is a bond in place as a guarantee to stand behind the property owners commitment to construct it.
Member Bononi asked Mr. Sobel why isnít this site suitable for construction? Mr. Sobel stated that this is an obligation of the seller of his property and not himself as the purchaser of the property or an applicant to the City. This was offered as a way of guaranteeing to the City that they have a commitment to have the means to accomplish the wetlands. The mechanisms to put the old bond to use were not there and this time they are.
Member Bononi asked Dennis Watson if the application would have to come before the Planning Commission again when it expires after six months? Or if a new site is selected?
Dennis Watson, stated that he was unsure, but he thought that it would be an administrative approval. He went on to state that this would not happen at the end of six months. At the end of six months, the applicant is either going to have that wetland mitigated at the site or have already had another site approved and be building it there. At the end of six months, the City has funds to construct a wetland and will have that option.
Member Bononi also asked whether or not the status of this mitigated wetland area would be irrevocable from the standpoint of using the site for anything else other than a mitigated wetland? Dennis Watson stated that an easement was provided which authorizes the City to use that site if the applicant fails to do the mitigation themselves. In addition, that same document indicates that once that wetland is created there, it has to be continually maintained solely as a wetland.
Member Hodges suggested that Chiliís name be included on the Shopping Center sign by Orchard Hill Place since there is no left turn at Chiliís for eastbound traffic traveling on Eight Mile Road. Rod Arroyo stated that this is the signage that has been submitted to Wayne County for approval. The Road Commission would never allow the name of a business on the sign. The best compromise would be "shopping center".
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if we could have "shopping center, restaurant" on the sign.
Rod Arroyo answered, probably not because it is too specific. Mr. Arroyo further stated that "shopping center" may not receive approval either.
Member Hodges expressed further concern about the signal sign. She explained that lane indicators tell her that she cannot turn left at that point and that she must travel up the road to turn left. She asked that since there is no left turn at that point, would it be better placed further up the road where one can turn left. Rod Arroyo replied the usage signs are for lane control and they will likely be supplemented by an overhead sign that shows that the center lane provides for left turns in either direction that donít necessarily specify particular locations. Mr. Arroyo advised that one location where left turns into the parking lot are prohibited, there will be a sign that says "No Left Turn."
Member Hoadley commended the developer on the revisions made to address the traffic concerns that he expressed at the last meeting.
Member Weddington once again voiced her objections for the record. As defined in the OSC District, and to her understanding, these uses are not intended as office support type uses and she stated she also shares those concerns expressed by Commissioner Bonaventura. She recognized the improvements that had been made to the roads in the plans, but stated that she still cannot support this project dating way back to the entire use of this parcel.
Chairperson Lorenzo expressed her concern regarding the mitigation. She stated that she is concerned that there will not be enough vegetation planted at the time of mitigation. She stated that she has read through the report and the intent is not to re-vegetate the new wetland entirely, although a number of target species are to be planted, nature will have the final decision on the long-term vegetative colonization of the area. The actual planting of the mitigation area is not anticipated to be complete landscaping, although sparsely vegetated in the first year, density increases with each season and competition could easily eliminate one or more of the target species. Chairperson Lorenzo stated that she understands that there will not be complete landscaping, but she is concerned that it will be too sparse and not vegetated enough to have an established wetland. The whole purpose of this wetland is to compensate for the loss of the previously existing wetland. She stated that she is not sure that this plan, as proposed, is going to accomplish that, at least not for many years.
Sue Tepatti, of JCK, reported that what typically happens with the mitigation areas is that, in the past, the Department of Natural Resources accepted plans without any plantings proposed. Typically, what happens is that the area does vegetate naturally, especially when the adjacent land is vacant, as in this case. The plants that will be put in are usually bare root species that have good success rate with a rapid spread. It is typical not to have a massive planting plan. The intent with the species and the amount being put in, is to give the higher quality plants a chance to get a foothold in before the more invasive, aggressive species grow. These plantings are considered a higher quality plant and this gives them more of a chance to get a head start. She stated that she feels the proposed plantings are adequate.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that she just wants to make sure that there are enough plantings so that it looks like the beginning of a wetland and not a large sink hole with water in it with a few plants placed here and there.
Sue Tepatti went on to state that she believes the easement language requires that the area be maintained as a wetland. If the plantings died or had never established, she stated that there would be replantings. She also stated that there wouldnít be approval on that area until it is established and growing with some evidence of success.
Chairperson Lorenzo expressed concern in regard to not seeing a condition that a monitoring program be established. She did read from the mitigation plan that a monitoring program will be established if deemed necessary by the City of Novi and asked if it is
deemed necessary at this time. Sue Tepatti stated that she would say so, but she doesnít believe that it was stated as a condition in her letter and she would like to make that a condition.
Member Bonaventura approved the addition of the condition.
Member Hoadley asked if the City does end up taking over the mitigation, will they have to go out and buy the land, and if so, is the bonding enough to do this? He also asked if the City will have to maintain the wetland. Dennis Watson, responded that the City is not going to buy the land and that they have provided an easement that would be used solely for the purpose of establishing the wetland Mr. Watson advised the maintenance requirement will forever be the responsibility of the applicant.
Member Capello commented that he voted against this project in the past because he did not feel the retail project belonged in this district. He stated that Commission should try to vote on whether the applicant has met requirements within the Preliminary Site Plan and if it is ready for Final Site Plan and not to go back and rehash the issues of should haveís. He stated that the fact is that the applicant has met all the requirements with a few exceptions that the consultants have listed and he does not see anything that the Planning Commission can do but to vote for Final Site Plan approval regardless of his previous objection.
Member Bonaventura is opposed, voting against the motion.
Chairperson Lorenzo restated the motion for Final Site Plan Approval for Novi Place SP 94-30E subject to all of the consultants verbal and written conditions including the wetland mitigation monitoring program. Chairperson Lorenzo asked Mr. Cohen to call the roll.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-087 - MOTION CARRIED
Yes: Hoadley, Hodges, Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Bononi, Capello
No: Weddington, Bonaventura
2. SCHEDULE A PUBLIC HEARING FOR THE CELLULAR COMMUNICATIONS TOWERS TEXT AMENDMENT
PM-96-05-088 TO SCHEDULE A PUBLIC HEARING FOR THE CELLULAR COMMUNICATIONS TOWERS TEXT AMENDMENT
Moved by Weddington, seconded by Vrettas, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To direct the staff to schedule a Public Hearing at the earliest possible date for consideration of text amendment to the ordinance regarding Communication Towers.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked Mr. Cohen to call the roll.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-088 MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Yes: Hodges, Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington, Bonaventura, Bononi, Capello, Hoadley
MATTERS FOR DISCUSSION
1. SPECIAL PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING
To consider having a special Planning Commission meeting on May 29, 1996 to discuss planning issues and studies.
Member Hodges asked for more specific items or a draft list of topics regarding this.
Steve Cohen replied that the main items are the draft reports for the work program studies that are due July 1, 1996. There were also certain items that Commissioners Hoadley, Bonaventura and a few others had at previous meetings that were going to be discussed, along with some Master Plan and Zoning Committee issues.
Member Vrettas asked if any other regular business would be discussed. Chairperson Lorenzo answered that this will be a planning and study session, no site plans, no public hearings, etc. will be discussed.
Member Bonaventura asked Steve Cohen, Planning Aide, if the items that he mentioned were the items that he had on his list for a joint meeting. Mr. Cohen answered no. The issues that he mentioned were raised by Member Bonaventura two meetings ago relating to the Cluster Option and a few others that he was unable to recall.
Member Bonaventura asked about the status of the joint meeting. Chairperson Lorenzo answered that she thought it may be sometime in May or June.
Steve Cohen elaborated further by, stating that it is the Mayorís decision as to a meeting date but the understanding is that once the budget is complete, that will then be a good opportunity to have a meeting.
Chairperson Lorenzo stated that the Chair will entertain a motion.
PM-96-05-089 TO CONSIDER HAVING A SPECIAL PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING ON MAY 29, 1996 TO DISCUSS PLANNING ISSUES AND STUDIES.
Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Hodges, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: Special Planning Commission Meeting on May 29, 1996 at 7:30 p.m.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked Mr. Cohen to call the roll.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-089 - CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Yes: Lorenzo, Markham, Vrettas, Weddington, Bonaventura, Bononi, Capello, Hoadley, Hodges
2. PRESENTATIONS OF CONSULTANTS
Member Hoadley stated for the record that he would like to indicate his support for the position that Chairperson Lorenzo and Commissioner Bononi made. He believes that the Commission should look at changing this format. He stated that he is particularly concerned that the Planning Commission at times, does not get input from the consultants with ideas that may or may not have been discussed with the petitioners. He stated that he would like to see more creativity from the consultants and the Planning Department to give recommendations that are not just subject to ZBA approval. Member Hoadley suggested that some alternative solutions other than subject to ZBA approval might be downsizing a building, revising the parking, revising an intrusive ordinance if approved. He encouraged the consultants to take the comments made by Commissioner Bononi and Chairperson Lorenzo under advisement. He stated that he would like to see the recommendations eliminated all together, except on zoning matters.
Member Bonaventura commented on Rod Arroyoís statement that when there are 4 or 5 consultants with one small problem, that a decision maker can accept the 4 or 5 positive recommendations. However there are 5 or 6 small issues, they can become one big issue that can become a major problem for a project.
Chairperson Lorenzo asked if there was anyone in the audience who would like to participate. Seeing no one, she closed the Audience Participation and entertained a motion to adjourn.
PM-96-05-090 TO ADJOURN REGULAR MEETING OF THE NOVI PLANNING COMMISSION AT 10:30 P.M.
Moved by Capello, seconded by Bonaventura, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To adjourn Regular Meeting of the Novi Planning Commission at 10:30 p.m.
VOTE ON PM-96-05-090 - MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Yes: Vrettas, Weddington, Bonaventura, Bononi, Capello, Hodges, Lorenzo, Markham, Hoadley
Transcribed by: Diane Vimr
May 17, 1996
Date Approved: June 5, 1996