(248) 347-0475


Meeting called to order at 7:32 p.m. by Chairperson Weddington.


PRESENT: Members Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley, Vrettas, Chairperson Weddington


ABSENT: Members Capello, Churella, Watza


ALSO PRESENT: Planning Consultant Brandon Rogers, Engineering Consultant Victoria Weber, Traffic Consultant Rod Arroyo, Assistant City Attorney Paul Weisberger, Landscape Architect Linda Lemke, Water Resources Specialist Susan Tepatti, Director of Planning & Community Development Jim Wahl, and Staff Planner Steve Rumple








Chairperson Weddington asked if there were any additions or corrections to the Agenda? Under Matters for Discussion, Item 1 she added Free Seminar Schedule and Item 2, the Capital Improvements Program Memorandum dated February 13, 1998 from Khanh Pham.





Moved by Canup, seconded by Hoadley, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the Agenda as amended.





Yes: Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley, Vrettas, Weddington

No: None





Jonathan Brateman, 42705 Grand River spoke in regard to the TC-1 Ordinance. He stated there was a cap of 7,500 square feet for retail and there are certain projects that could be possible for this use of the cap were raised to 15,000 square feet. He stated the uses would be furniture type related uses that he thought would be very well served in the TC-1 District. Secondly, Mr. Brateman spoke about the practice of veterinary medicine being limited to the B-3 zone. He stated the amount of vacant B-3 land is very limited. He thought it was within the spirit of the law to try to get a variance on OS-1 zoning, it would have to be proven that the land could not be used for any other use except Office. Mr. Brateman welcomed the Implementation Committee to explore it.


Chairperson Weddington asked if anyone else would like to address the Commission? Seeing no one she closed the Audience Participation and announced there would be a second following the mid point break and a final before adjournment.





Steve Rumple, Staff Planner announced he has received a letter from Enriko Sasson of the Solomon Group. Mr. Rumple stated there is a requirement in the Site Plan Manual which states if the applicant has a negative letter, they can still appear before the Planning Commission but they have to put their request in writing. The letter dated February 13, 1998 stated, following our phone conversation and receipt of Linda Lemke’s letter, I wish to remain on the Planning Commission hearing scheduled for February 18, 1998 at 7:30 p.m. regarding Society Hill, SP95-44E.






1. APPROVAL OF THE JANUARY 21, 1998 MINUTES (Action Summary Available Only)


Mr. Rumple stated at the January 21, 1998 meeting the new sound system was installed with new microphones, etc., however, they forgot to hook up the recording machine and the meeting was not recorded. He stated he was able to put together an Action Summary based on notes that he had taken from the meeting and after discussing it with Mr. Wahl, it was concluded that he would draw out his resources to come up with a more adequate set of minutes that will reflect what took place at that meeting. He suggested it might be appropriate to make a motion to remove the Approval of the January 21, 1998 Minutes from the Agenda.





Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Bononi, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To postpone approval of the January 21, 1998 minutes until a more complete set is submitted.





Yes: Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley, Vrettas, Weddington

No: None








Presentation by Bud Scott and Jonathan Brateman


Bud Scott, Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce thanked the Commission for the opportunity to present the report. He acknowledged the members of the Committee who worked very hard on the report. Mr. Scott presented the update of the original report entitled Novi at the Crossroads which was issued in August 1995. He felt the implications for Novi’s future are serious and the City would encourage development of the Industrial Commercial tax base or the residents would have to pay higher taxes to provide basic health and safety services for the citizens.


Jonathan Brateman referred to the first table in the report and he stated there was a trend that occurred from 1989 until 1996 when the SEV of residential went from 47% to 58%, commercial went from 30 to 23 and industrial went from 10 to 8. He stated a diversification of the tax base is what is trying to be accomplished. He reviewed the second and third tables. Mr. Brateman stated he worked together with the Planning Commission on some Ordinance changes and he looked forward to the development of the NCC parcels. He stated he was trying to work cooperatively with the City to say that there is a trend that is going on toward greater proportion of residential than commercial/industrial in the City. He stated he is trying to bring high quality, good uses to the City.


Mr. Scott stated although the updated information still reaffirms the continuation of the trend of residential construction out pacing commercial/industrial construction, he recognized the efforts made by the Novi City Officials since the original report. The changes included the commitment to revise the Site Plan Manual, the creation of the OST Ordinance, modification of the NCC Ordinance, the appointment of the Economic Development Coordinator, Greg Capote, the revitalization of the City of Novi Economic Development Corporation. The Chamber was very encouraged by these actions and thanks the City for the energy spent on making the changes. Mr. Scott stated the Economic Development Committee makes the following recommendations: 1) Redesign the Light Industrial Zoning District; 2) Identify new appropriate Light Industrial Zoning Districts; 3) Continue to emphasize the OST Ordinance and the proper placement of that district; 4) Streamline the building process in the City of Novi; 5) Address traffic issues including roadway improvements on a community wide basis; 6) Continue to simplify and modify the Novi Site Plan Manual. He stated the City needs to empower and designate one individual who can assist developers with the Novi building process. Once the changes have been made, he thought a joint strong marketing effort needed to be conducted to change the peoples perception of the building process in the City of Novi. The Chamber feels these changes are necessary to ensure the City of Novi is an informative community in which to reside in the years to come. Mr. Scott looked forward to further address these issues at the Economic Summit that has been organized for March 14, 1998.








Property located west of Novi Road, between Twelve Mile Road and Twelve ½ Mile Road seeking Preliminary Site Plan Approval, PD-1 Option, Woodlands and Wetlands Permit Approvals.


Joseph Galvin appeared on behalf of Enriko Sasson and he introduced Bob Leighton. Mr. Galvin presented a revision to the Society Hill plans which were previously approved and granted an extension in August 1997. Mr. Galvin asked the Commission to substitute the plan he was presenting with the plan that was previously approved because the revised plan is a better plan and it meets a number of issues that the Commission raised when the initial plan was presented.


Specifically, Mr. Galvin stated the height of the buildings to be constructed was an issue, secondly, the scale of the buildings on the site was also an issue. Each of the elements have been changed on the new plan and more of the Planning Commissions requirements and requests have been addressed. He said there were no reasons stated in the Consultants reports which would cause the Commission to recommend to the City Council that they not approve the plan as a substitute. Mr. Galvin asked the Commission to recommend approval of the revised plan.


Brandon Rogers, Planning Consultant stated various criteria for a PD-1 Option review have been met. The Master Plan designates the site for PD-1 Option eligibility, utilities are available at the site. The impacts on utilities, traffic and compatibility with natural resources were also reviewed and found acceptable. In regard to the Impact Assessment report, there were a couple of details that should be adjusted. All preliminary application data are provided. The proposed project proposes 310 dwelling units in 25 buildings consisting of a mix of two and three bedroom units. The site area is 25.07 acres which would allow up to 1,560 rooms, the revised plan shows fewer than those units and is in compliance. The apartment floor space sizes comply with the standards of the Ordinance and the buildings comply with the setbacks. Certain buildings are not oriented at least a 45 degree angle to adjacent property lines which include Buildings 1, 2, 3, 24, and 25. Buildings 9, 10 and 11 also do not comply but are set off about 500' from the west property line. In regard to parking, there are 730 spaces provided and 698 are required. The parking lots observe the required 20' setback from the property lines. A 5' sidewalk is proposed along 12 ½ Mile Road subject to further review for woodlands impact. In regard to the Phasing Plan, Mr. Rogers stated Phase I was to include the construction of road curbs, gutters and base coat of paving, all utilities, soil erosion measures, tennis courts, detention basins, entryway and detention landscaping, the Clubhouse and parking areas. The other 24 phases are individual building pads and perimeter areas. Mr. Rogers recommended PD-1 approval and Preliminary Site Plan approval subject to Planning Commission waiving orientation of Buildings 1, 2, 3, 9, 10, 11, 24 and 25 from strict compliance with the 45 degree building orientation. And compliance with Woodlands Permit conditions.


Mr. Rogers referred to the original plan which showed a stub street. The stub on the new plan is called out as an optional future access, about 45' south of the prior location. The future access leads into the three isolated RA parcels. Mr. Rogers also referred to the street stub at the east end of Carlton Forest Subdivision which would have to be provided for the internal road system which connects Society Hill through the other parcels, into Carlton Forest. Mr. Rogers recommended that the street stub be identified on the plan and shown as such as was shown on the originally approved plan and delete the reference to optional future access.


Rod Arroyo, Traffic Consultant stated the access is primarily from one point onto Novi Road. There is a secondary access proposed to Twelve ½ Mile Road which would not be open to the public, it would be for emergency access only. There are two optional stub streets, one to the to the west and one to the property directly to the south of the project which could also provide some benefits in terms of internal connections between developments. A traffic study has been submitted and updated information has been provided. A project of this size which is a 310 unit development is forecast to generate almost 2,000 trips per day, approximately 155 during the morning peak hour and 185 during the afternoon peak hour. Novi Road is a five lane road north of Twelve Mile Road. Twelve Mile Road is currently being designed as a six-lane boulevard however, funds for construction have not yet been secured. Deceleration lanes and tapers are not warranted for this project. Mr. Arroyo reported on the impact that the project would have on the Twelve Mile and Novi Road intersection. He conducted an evaluation of the p.m. peak hour which is currently a Level of Service "E" and with the added traffic from the development, it would remain at a Level of Service "E". Mr. Arroyo recommended approval of the Preliminary Site Plan subject to comments in his letter dated January 22, 1998.


Victoria Weber, Engineering Consultant stated the site consists of two access points, one from Novi Road and the other from Twelve ½ Mile Road with an internal private drive. Water service will be brought to the site by tapping into an existing 36" main on the east side of Novi Road as well as looping the water main through the site to connect to an existing 24" water main on Twelve ½ Mile Road. Sanitary service will be provided and extended from an existing 8" stub at the southwest corner of the site and a sanitary sewer stub will be left off at the north edge of the site for future service for future development. Storm water will be collected in an on site storm sewer system and will be routed to two separate detention basins. The reason being, based on the topography of the site, the northern 1/3 of the site will be draining in a northeast type fashion and the southern 2/3 of the site will be draining to the southeast. There will be temporary sedimentation features and permanent water quality controls contained in the basin. Ms. Weber pointed out that the water main shown on Twelve ½ Mile Road was mislabeled, it should be 24". Ms. Weber recommended that the 36" water main along Novi Road not be tapped but instead, the water main be looped around the site. A 12" water main stub should be provided to the western property line and also to the southern property line for future developments. In regard to storm sewer, the applicant will need to verify that the storm sewer along Novi Road has enough capacity for the additional flow. Oil and gas separators will be required in the last structure prior to discharge into the detention basins. A 5' concrete sidewalk is being required along Twelve ½ Mile Road frontage. There were some issues with grading around the rear of a few of the buildings where it was too steep, these items can be addressed at the time of Final Site Plan. Ms. Weber recommended approval of the Preliminary Site Plan.


Ms. Weber stated the Phasing Plan was reviewed and it is recommended for approval. All roads and utilities will be put in with Phase I. Ms. Weber stated it is also recommended that the Woodlands Plan be recommended for approval. There were some concerns about the grading around a few of the buildings and in regard to the location of the tree fence, it may require some revisions which can be addressed at the time of Final Site Plan.



Linda Lemke, Landscape Architect referred to the new site plan. She stated the woodland is of very high quality, the area is also a good high quality habitat area. The woodlands occupy almost the entire site. The woodlands go off the site to the along the property line into the south. In comparing the plan to the previously submitted plan, there is very little difference in the areas saved or removed. Ms. Lemke stated in the Final plan, with the four provisions in her letter dated February 09, 1998, she felt it was a better plan. The four provisions included; 1) the use of retaining walls throughout the project to save areas adjacent to buildings on sides and near rear patios to reduce excessive grades; 2) the use of retaining walls and increase areas in islands; 3) the use of retaining walls to reduce side slopes by detention pond along Novi Road; 4) planting replacement trees in disturbed areas adjacent to the buildings at the side and rear in close proximity to create the effect that the buildings are emerging from the woodlands. Ms. Lemke stated these four items would make the plan better than the previously submitted plan.


Ms. Lemke expressed concerns about the placement of the proposed detention pond on the northern portion of the site. She stated she would need additional data on the area it was proposed for, with the drainage going to the west and it is possible that the location will change because she was concerned about flooding in an area of the wooded wetlands. Ms. Lemke stated she would also like to see all down spouts on the building attached to the storm system.


Ms. Lemke stated the reason she denied the plan in the past as well as her reasoning for denying it again was because she felt there were still other alternatives. Because of the high sensitivity of the quality of the woodlands, the type of species and the topography, any impact on the woodland will be a high impact. There are other design alternatives which could be done, they are; 1) eliminate excess parking spaces; 2) eliminate connection between the north and south; 3) eliminate number of units and buildings, particularly in the northern section of the site; 4) provide connection between the two woodlands and wetlands, providing a contiguous uninterrupted natural area. Some information is still required which includes; 1) additional locations of protective fencing; 2) detail of protective fencing per City standards; 3) planting detail and; 4) wildlife culvert should be provided on road to west and north of Building #6.


Currently, there are 1,849 trees surveyed on the site that are 8" d.b.h. or greater. The plan shows the removal of 987 trees 8" d.b.h. or greater, using the replacement formula, there would be replacement of 1,562 , 2 ½" trees. The previous plan indicated the removal of 1,019 trees with a required replacement of 1,611, 2 ½" caliper trees. The exact number of trees to be removed and replacement trees would be determined at the time of Final. In summary, Ms. Lemke did not recommend approval for the Woodlands Permit and she noted her five conditions in her letter dated February 09, 1998.


Susan Tepatti, Water Resources Specialist stated the site contains a couple of large wetlands, one lies along Novi Road while the other two lie in the western boundary of the site. The wetland along Novi Road is two acres and connected to additional wetlands on the east side of Novi Road. The project requires a Wetland Permit due to a few impacts. In the southwest corner of the parcel, they are proposing to extend the sanitary sewer and it will impact 740 square feet of wetland, the wetland can be restored to the original condition after construction. There are tennis courts proposed to impact a portion of the wetland setback, storm water is proposed to be discharged to the northern wetland after it is routed through a detention basin.


Ms. Tepatti stated there were eight conditions of approval: 1) A revised DEQ permit must be approved for the development; 2) Engineering plans shall be reviewed for the routing of sump discharges to wetlands; 3) A Soil Erosion Permit shall be obtained, and Certified Storm Water Operator shall be utilized on site for inspections; 4) Retaining walls shall be utilized where necessary to reduce setback impacts; 5) If feasible, a wildlife culvert shall be installed beneath the road to connect the two habitats at the north end of the site; 6) The second tennis court shall be omitted or moved east if feasible to reduce setback impacts; 7) The wetland impact impacted by the sanitary extension shall be restored; 8) The detention basins shall include sedimentation controls and shall be designed to act as water quality basins on a permanent basis.


Chairperson Weddington announced she has received a letter from Michael W. Evans, Fire Marshal for the City of Novi Fire Department which states the above plan has been reviewed and approval is recommended with the following items being corrected on the next plan submittal: 1) Provide 2 additional hydrants in the internal parking drive near buildings 18 & 13; 2) Show the location of the Fire Department Connection on all buildings with automatic fire sprinkler systems. A hydrant shall be located within 100' of the FDC; 3) No parking will be allowed on any street. Provide "Fire Lane - No Parking" signs in accordance with Section 15, F-311.0 of the Code of Ordinances; 4) Gates are not permitted across any private or public streets, a variance is required; 5) All roads are to be paved prior to construction above the foundation and shall be noted on the plans; 6) All water mains and fire hydrants are to be installed and in service prior to construction above the foundation and shall be noted on the plans; 7) The building address is to be posted facing the street throughout construction; 8) The multi-residential building shall be numbered.


Chairperson Weddington announced it was a Public Hearing and opened the Matter to the Public.


Andrew Mutch, 24541 Hampton Court felt it was unfortunate that the area was designated for high density multiple family residential in a highly environmental sensitive area. He stated the plan would not comply with the underlying zone of RM-1 because it exceeds the density requirements, therefore, the applicant is getting the benefit from using the PD-1 Option. The benefit to the City would be the reduction in the size of the footprint which is intended to preserve more woodlands and wetlands. Mr. Mutch thought there could be areas of compromise between the City and the developer which would preserve more woodlands and wetlands as this was his understanding of the Option.


Debbie Bundoff expressed concern regarding the plan being considered as a new plan submittal and the one year extension the applicant received last year. She also expressed concern with the buffer between PD-1 and the existing RA. She stated there are adjacent RA properties that need to be buffered from this high intense use. She expressed concern with any drainage that goes to the south or southeast because she abuts the property and over 1,000 feet of land. Ms. Bundoff expressed concern regarding any run-off from the parking area, also the buildings to the south and the tennis courts as they are very close to the property line with no buffering. She was also concerned about lighting for the tennis courts at night. In regard to the Traffic Study that was submitted in 1996, she was concerned as to how accurate that information was, now that the roads have been improved and more traffic has been added with the addition of new developments. She stated that three densities were mentioned by the petitioner, 270, 301 and 310. Ms. Bundoff questioned the exit from the site onto Novi Road. The width of the exit in comparison to the adjacent property owner and their curb cut. She stated the map does not show how close or far it is located. She was concerned about this because it was estimated that 45% of the traffic coming into the site would be from the south which meant there would be some stacking and would not allow her to get in or out of her driveway for possibly a 2 hour period. Ms. Bundoff stated she owns an active farm and wanted the petitioner to market the development acknowledging that it is next to an active farm.


Chairperson Weddington asked if anyone else would like to address the Commission? Seeing no one she closed the Public Hearing and turned the Matter over to the Commission for Discussion.





Member Csordas asked the petitioner the reason the site plan was changed if the previous one was already approved?


Mr. Galvin answered there were 2 reasons; 1) the comments that were received from the Commission; 2) Mr. Sasson became familiar with the housing designs after going through the process. He stated they found something that the City liked, it was beneficial to them so they came back with a plan which they believed to be better from the Commission’s perspective.


Member Csordas asked what plans were in store for the remainder of the woodlands and wetlands? He asked if the petitioner would be able to develop additional acreage there?


Mr. Galvin answered, no. He stated it was a practical matter and it would not be developable.


Member Csordas stated there were not acceleration or deceleration lanes at the gated entry or at Twelve ½ Mile Road. He asked Mr. Arroyo if this made sense?


Mr. Arroyo stated there would be no entry from Twelve ½ Mile Road except for emergency vehicles, all other vehicles would use the Novi Road entry. He stated there would have to be a physical barrier. He stated in the past there was a proposal for a secured entry with a gated entrance. In regard to Novi Road, typically when there is a five lane road section, the outside lane acts as a decel lane. In this case, the majority of traffic will be coming from the south and making left turns in. Right turns in will be fairly low, therefore, he did not believe there would need to be a decel lane.


Member Csordas asked if the entrance to Twelve ½ Mile Road would be blocked off?


Mr. Arroyo answered it would likely be a gravel entry or a paved, one lane entry with treatment to ensure it would not be used by visitors or residents.


Member Csordas asked how far was the curb cut to the south of the gated entry?


Mr. Arroyo did not know without looking it up.


Member Csordas asked if the driveway would be on the north end of the property?


Mr. Arroyo stated the drive would be near the north end of the property, adjacent the property to the south.


Member Csordas asked if separation of the driveway met the City code?


Mr. Arroyo answered, yes.


Member Csordas asked Ms. Lemke where the replacement trees would be planted?


Ms. Lemke answered they would try to put as many of them back on the site as possible and the remainder would have the option to be placed in the City’s Tree Fund or planted on another property that was owned by the applicant within the City of Novi.


Member Hoadley felt very strong that the property was being over built. He did not know why the density was being increased, he stated he liked the building configurations better than in the past. He took exception to Mr. Arroyo’s report in regard to the entrance on Novi Road, he thought Ms. Bundoff’s comments should be considered. Member Hoadley agreed with Mr. Mutch that this should be a compromise. He thought there were better alternative plans than this one. He stated he would like to see the cuts to the adjacent properties shown on the plans. Member Hoadley stated there were so many holes in the presentation that he would like to postpone it for 45 days so the applicant can make some revisions. He stated the gatehouse should be moved further to the west at least one car length, otherwise he would like to see an acceleration/deceleration lane. He explained he would like to see an acceleration lane because there would be a lot of right turning traffic in the morning.


Member Hoadley asked Ms. Lemke what buildings she would like to see removed to make it less intrusive on the woodlands?


Ms. Lemke suggested removing anywhere from all of the buildings in the northern half, to some of the builidngs in the northern half, to removing the road that connects the southern half from the northern half and removing building 6 or 7, or redesigning that area so there is a contiguous flow between the two wooded wetland areas.


Member Hoadley thought there should be some compromise in it. He stated a secondary access was needed, therefore, the road could not be eliminated. He thought Building 11 could be compromised to accommodate the tennis courts. He asked Mr. Galvin what he proposed to do in regard to both site and noise intrusion for the adjacent property owner in regard to the tennis courts?


Mr. Galvin stated he has not thought about this issue.


Member Hoadley asked him to consider removing part of Building 11 so the tennis courts could be moved both east and north out of the wetlands. He reiterated that he would like to see the stub streets designated on the site plan and stubbed in, he stated he would like to see the treatment for the road on Twelve ½ Mile Road. If it was going to be a full access, he recommend paving Twelve ½ Mile Road to it. However, if Twelve ½ was not to be paved, then there would have to be a provision on the site plan as to how he would be eliminating traffic on that road. Member Hoadley wanted to see these items on the plans before he would make a recommendation. He stated if he had the opportunity to, he would recommend a postponement of the project which would allow the petitioner to address the concerns of the Consultants and Commissioners.


Member Bononi asked how the ground coverage including building footprint and impervious surface of the development compared with the initially approved plan?


Mr. Galvin stated he did not have the calculations.


Member Bononi asked if she understood Mr. Rogers letter to state that the building footprints were greater than the previous?


Mr. Rogers thought he mentioned that there were 25 buildings versus 10. He stated they had more surface parking on the previous plan and on this plan they have an inside garage system. He stated he did not compute lot coverage.


Member Bononi asked how many stories maximum in the two zones with a PD Option could be built on site?


Mr. Rogers answered, at least three and up to five.


Member Bononi found this to be a very reasonable design alternative and was interested in hearing whether the applicant had any plans to pursue it? She asked the applicant if he had any idea how much earth would be moved in order to accommodate the complex?


Mr. Galvin stated it could not be calculated until they had a Final Site Plan with Final Engineering. He stated some rough calculations could be done and in that regard, Ms. Lemke’s design specifications spoke to the use of retaining walls, so there are things that can be done to mitigate it and also preserve more of the woodlands.


Member Bononi stated she would like more information in regard to the amount of earth movement. She realized that the applicant did not have to give that information at this point, however, there are two other important mitigating factors which include wetlands and woodlands and in order for her to have the information she needs to make that decision, she would need an estimate of cubic yards of earth the applicant is talking about. Member Bononi asked if the architectural plans were stock?


Mr. Galvin answered they were not stock, they were designed for the buildings as he understood it. He stated the stock part of it is the back to back and the townhouse over the plat design, which allows the economist to permit the buildings to be rented or owned.


Member Bononi asked if the architect would have site supervision?


Mr. Galvin did not know what the contract was between Mr. Sasson and the property owner.


Member Bononi expressed concern with the traffic situation on Twelve Mile Road with regard to improvements on the road as it currently exists. By approving this project along with others down the line, without any guaranteed projected funding or even a date for improving the road, Member Bononi said she just did not understand it. She did not believe in building something and then build improvements around it. She spoke of public safety, quality of life for the existing residents which seemed to be a vanishing point. The fact that the Commission would approve this project with Twelve Mile Road being in the condition that it is, was unbelievable to her, she stated it was a planning problem. Member Bononi commented on the woodlands. She stated the fact that Ms. Lemke has reservations, not to mention the alternatives in her letter, were of great concern to her. She was also concerned that the applicant comes forward with their application with that burden. She agreed with Member Hoadley that there were lots of alternatives and she believed that there were creative ones that could make a difference. Lastly, Member Bononi said trees were very important to her and she believed that the woodlands were vitally important to the City. She believed the applicant had the right to develop it, but she was talking about the extent and the fact that the applicant was not making any more woodlands.


Member Bononi used the information submitted with the application and by using her formula, if she picked up all of the trees to be removed from the site, like a bundle of straws, she would get a diameter of 929'. She stated then they would be replaced with 2 ½" diameter caliper trees with a circle that is only 230' in diameter. Member Bononi believed there were positive and creative things that could be done. She stated she would not support a recommendation for this application, however, she would support and second a motion to postpone, to give the applicant a chance to address particularly the woodland items.


Member Vrettas commended the applicant for trying to work with the City. He thought it was a clash of cultures. He thought there needed to be a compromise in a win/win situation. He stated more work needed to be done and suggested taking a postponement to work with Ms. Lemke. He asked the applicant to be patient and work with the City and it would work out.





Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Bononi, WITHDRAWN





Member Hoadley stated he would like the petitioner to take a look at what has been said in good faith because it was meant that way. He thought the plan was improved but thought there was too much parking, he thought there should be 301 units, the gatehouse should be moved so there would be more stacking and it should be shown on the plan how the applicant proposed to close off the northern cut, he thought the applicant should meet with Ms. Lemke to come up with a revised plan that she could support more than the current one. He asked Mr. Galvin to consider moving the cut on Novi Road further to the north if possible so it does not intrude on the adjacent property owner. He asked for an animal culvert to be shown on the site plan.


Chairperson Weddington shared the concerns of the Commission. The only improvement she saw was that there was less parking area, therefore, in terms of impervious area, she was not sure that there was any impact at all. She commented on Member Bononi’s calculation of 929' of trees and stated it was equal to three football fields. To say that 50% of the trees are being preserved, 50% are also being destroyed. The Standard of Review in regard to woodlands and wetlands, is that there is no other feasible alternative. She believed there were other feasible alternatives that have not been presented to the Commission. She stated until she sees that none of them work, she could not support it. She believed the applicant could put forth a plan that all of the Commissioners could support but she needed to see significant improvement in the animal habitat, core reserve area as they are irreplaceable areas of the City.


Chairperson Weddington asked Ms. Weber if there was any adverse impact in the difference between the 36' main to the 24' main and if there was still adequate pressure?


Ms. Weber stated there has not been any calculations and there should not be any problems that she could foresee.


Chairperson Weddington thought the comments of Ms. Bundoff needed to be taken into account. She stated the plan shows 20' from the tennis courts to the property line. She advised the applicant to put a buffer or screening, at the very least and consider what will be done about the lighting. She hoped the comments could be addressed so the Commission could give approval to the project.


Mr. Galvin reported that Mr. Sasson asked, rather than to postpone, he asked that the Commission vote on the merits as it is before them. He stated they understand and they are caught in a time trap. He stated they came with what they believed was a plan that gave more than the prior one. They thought it would please the Commission. He stated they went through the alternatives and it would not accomplish anything positive and it would have a number of negative impacts. Mr. Galvin stated if they had not spent the time that they previously did to get to the first plan, they would not be as fearful as they are. He stated it is an observation made by experience. For these reasons, Mr. Sasson respectfully requested that the Commission vote on the current motion to approve, approve with conditions or deny to the City Council so that they will not be bogged down with it in July.


Mr. Weisberger pointed out that the Ordinance requires if an applicant requests action on an approval or denial, it shall be voted upon.


Member Hoadley withdrew his motion.


Chairperson Weddington pointed out a number of actions, she stated the Commission could deny or attach conditions. She pointed out if there is a recommendation to approve, the previous plan should be extinguished and any new plans should be substituted for the old ones.







Member Bononi asked Mr. Weisberger if that decision was rooted in a State Land Use Law of any kind or if it was a unique regulation of the City of Novi?


Mr. Weisberger could not answer.


Member Bononi thought it was very important to know the answer to her question.


Member Hoadley stated he did not want to send a recommendation one way or the other because he thought it was something that could be approved. He thought the petitioner should withdraw his request because the next thing he was going to do was to recommend that the Commission does not grant a Woodland Permit which will delay it anyway. Member Hoadley respectfully requested the petitioner to withdraw his request because he would not gain anything from it.


Chairperson Weddington stated the petitioner has already presented his request and thought the motion should be voted on, she asked if there was a second to the motion?


Member Hoadley stated if a motion must be made, the Commission would be better off making a positive recommendation taking into consideration, all of the conditions and comments of the Commissioners and Consultants.


Chairperson Weddington asked Member Hoadley to articulate his additional conditions to make sure they are incorporated.


Member Hoadley stated he wanted the wildlife culverts shown on the site plan, as well as the stubs to adjacent property owners, show the cut to Twelve ½ Mile Road and how it is going to be dealt with to eliminate access/egress other than emergency, the gatehouse should be moved back at least one car length, tennis courts should be moved to the west and north with a possible elimination of part of Building 11, along with the concerns of Ms. Tepatti and Ms. Lemke in regard to the detention pond run-off including the run-off onto Ms. Bundoff’s property. Along with all other recommendations of the Consultants.





Moved by Hoadley, seconded by Vrettas, FAILED (2-4): To recommend Preliminary Site Plan approval subject to all of the Commissioners and Consultants recommendations.





Yes: Csordas, Hoadley

No: Bononi, Canup, Vrettas, Weddington





Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Bononi, CARRIED (4-2): To send a negative recommendation to City Council.





Yes: Canup, Vrettas, Weddington, Bononi

No: Csordas, Hoadley



Chairperson Weddington announced there was also the matter of the woodlands, wetlands and the PD-1 and Phasing.





Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Bononi, CARRIED (4-2): To send a negative recommendation to City Council on the PD-1 Option and Phasing Plan.





Yes: Vrettas, Weddington, Bononi, Canup

No: Csordas, Hoadley





Moved by Hoadley, seconded by Vrettas, CARRIED (5-1): To postpone Woodlands vote for 45 days pending resolution of the issues raised by the Woodlands Consultant and Commissioners.





Yes: Hoadley, Vrettas, Weddington, Bononi, Canup

No: Csordas





Moved by Vrettas, seconded by Bononi, CARRIED (4-2): To send a negative recommendation to City Council for Wetland Permit approval for Society Hill, SP95-44E.





Yes: Vrettas, Weddington, Bononi, Canup

No: Csordas, Hoadley


Chairperson Weddington announced the Commission would take a 10 minute recess.










An Ordinance to amend footnote (d) to Section 2400 of Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, and to amend that portion of the Schedule limiting height, bulk, density and area within Section 2400 of said Ordinance which pertains to the RM-1 District, to amend the standards pertaining to Multi-family Residential Development.


Paul Weisberger, Assistant City Attorney stated the first amendment to footnote (d) came about after the Zoning rewrite. He stated it clarifies the intent of the zoning rewrite which was to exclude from multi-family density calculations regulated woodlands. The revision coordinates that exclusion with the previously existing exclusion pertaining to dedicated rights-of-way. In regard to the height for RM-1 and RM-2, the story reference has been eliminated. He noted in Mr. Rogers letter that there were some buildings coming in at 3 stories but were still under the 35' height requirement and were going to the ZBA, he believed there were two different sets of BOCA regulations for buildings exceeding two stories.


Brandon Rogers, Planning Consultant added he thought this amendment would help to reduce the number of appeals to the ZBA and expedite approvals.


Chairperson Weddington announced it was a Public Hearing and opened the Matter to the Public. Seeing no one she closed the Public Hearing and turned the Matter over to the Commission for Discussion.





In regard to regulated wetlands and watercourses, Member Hoadley asked Mr. Rogers why areas under two acres was being excluded?


Mr. Rogers stated he could not think of any background reason why it was brought down to less than two acres, it would take out the bulk of the wetlands from the density computation.


Mr. Weisberger suggested looking at the draft and defer questions or concerns to the Environmental Committee.





Moved by Hoadley, seconded by Csordas, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To adopt the Zoning Ordinance Amendments for RM-1/RM-2 as presented.





Yes: Weddington, Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley

No: None

Absent: Vrettas








Member Hoadley stated the Committee met last week and sent positive recommendation to the Planning Commission that Section 1 on the map be Master Planned from RA to OST.


Chairperson Weddington read from the minutes of the Master Plan and Zoning Committee meeting, there was a motion made by Member Bononi, seconded by Member Hoadley to send a positive recommendation to the Planning Commission to amend the Master Plan for Land Use designation of Study Area 1, the area between Haggerty Road and M-5, north of Twelve Mile Road to Fourteen Mile Road, to an Office designation and additionally, to direct staff to inform the City of Farmington Hills of the Master Plan and Zoning Committees positive recommendation to the Planning Commission of the City of Novi. She reported it was supported by all three members of the Committee. Chairperson Weddington announced a Public Hearing would be set for the first meeting in April and at that time the Commission would reiterate the recommendations from the Committee.




Chairperson Weddington announced that Member Vrettas has resigned from the Master Plan and Zoning Committee, therefore, there was a vacancy on the Committee. She stated she was willing to fill the vacancy unless someone else would like to volunteer.





Moved by Hoadley, seconded by Bononi, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To appoint Chairperson Eda Weddington to the Master Plan and Zoning Committee.





Yes: Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley, Weddington

No: None


Member Csordas pointed out that the Capital Improvements Committee did not show him as being a member and he should be added as well as Councilmembers Lorenzo and Kramer. He stated that he had and interest in getting back onto the Town Center Steering Committee. He clarified he was on the Committee in the past when it met at 5:30 p.m. and that time was difficult for him to meet, however, he understood that the Committee was now meeting at 6:00 p.m. and he would like to volunteer to serve on the Committee.





Moved by Hoadley, seconded by Bononi, NO VOTE TAKEN.


Chairperson Weddington was not sure that there was a vacancy on the Town Center Steering Committee. She stated it needed to be clarified that Member Churella was willing to give up his seat on the Committee to Member Csordas.


Member Csordas asked if there were any other vacancies on any of the other Committees?


Chairperson Weddington stated there was a vacancy on the Planning Studies and Budget Committee.


Member Csordas volunteered to serve on the Planning Studies and Budget Committee.





Moved by Hoadley, seconded by Bononi, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To appoint Member Csordas to the Planning Studies and Budget Committee.





Yes: Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley, Weddington

No: None









Steve Rumple, Staff Planner stated the Commission made a motion to ask him to schedule one of three free seminars that were voted as the top three priority, at the next open Planning Commission Meeting. He stated all of the meetings have been full, there was one meeting Agenda that became light at the last minute and he did not think it was fair to call the speaker on the spot and ask them to come in to give a free seminar. Mr. Rumple suggested the Commission could direct him to set up a seminar for the next meeting no matter what the schedule.



(Member Bononi’s comments were not clearly heard on tape, voice was muffled)





Moved by Bononi, seconded by Csordas, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To set up free seminars once a month.


Member Hoadley suggested starting the Planning Commission meeting at 7:00 p.m. giving an additional ½ hour.





Yes: Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley, Weddington

No: None






(Member Bononi’s comments were not clearly heard on tape, voice was muffled)


Member Bononi took issue with one statement of the memo which referred to the Planning Commission role as submitting composites and to be included as... (voice became muffled).


Chairperson Weddington stated she spoke with Mr. Pham and she stated the intent of the Committee was to make sure that they get input from all of the Commissioners regarding projects. They








Presentation by Brandon Rogers.


Brandon Rogers, Planning Consultant explained that Yee Minard was asked to do a survey and Mr. Arroyo and himself were to provide a series of possible questions to Yee Minard to format, code and set up for the survey. He stated his letter dated February 13, 1998 asked Yee Minard to get back to Mr. Rogers at which time a finished format would be brought to the Planning Commission. Mr. Rogers stated it appeared on the Agenda for the purposes of a progress report. He stated the Commission was not being asked to comment on individual questions at this time as the Commission would be getting a professional questionnaire form before the next meeting, which embodied these questions. Mr. Rogers also attached a cost debit that Yee Minard submitted.



Rod Arroyo, Traffic Consultant added that they have been working very hard to try to develop a list of questions that would be representative. He stated the questions would be coming back to the Commission for the opportunity to provide comments before it becomes final.


Member Canup asked how much difference will the survey make?


Mr. Rogers answered, it would help develop goals and objectives which is an intricate part of the Master Plan. He did not know how definitive or effective it would be.


Mr. Arroyo stated one of the requirements of the State Enabling Legislation is when preparing a Master Plan, public input is to be sought out. He stated there are various ways and points in time to do so.


Member Hoadley thought if specific questions were to be asked then the question of what is already planned or master planned should be prefaced. He thought the questions should include some background as to where the City currently stands.


Mr. Arroyo stated Member Hoadley’s concerns are one of the responsibilities of Yee Minard. He stated the whole process is to make sure the questions are formulated in a way that they do not lead people to a certain answer and Mr. Arroyo thought that providing background could be done in a way that might or might not lead people to a certain answer. He stated Member Hoadley’s comments were well taken and he would ask Lee Minard to review it to make sure that they give as direct a questionnaire as possible.


Member Hoadley thought Mr. Rogers and Mr. Arroyo would have to review the questions in depth because Yee Minard would not know what is already on the books to be developed or what is already Master Planned, etc. Member Hoadley thought the questions would have to be prefaced, Mr. Rogers and Mr. Arroyo would have to go over them and then the Commission should take a look at them.


Mr. Rogers stated the questions are not finalized. He stated some background could be put in but he did not want to turn the questions into paragraphs because the people taking the survey would not read them.


Chairperson Weddington stated the Committee also spoke about testing the questions on people who do not have a background of the plans.


Member Bononi suggested the language in question #2 be changed.





Report by Rod Arroyo.


Rod Arroyo, Traffic Consultant gave a brief overview of the process and provided an update on opportunities to obtain some additional training if desired. He stated he was asked by Mr. Wahl to provide the Commission with a briefing on the Subdivision Plat Process.


Mr. Arroyo stated a subdivision or a plat is a proposal to divide land and provide access to the land. Once the plat is approved, the applicant then has to go forward and seek the construction permits to actually construct the building. If it were an industrial plat, the applicant would have to come forward with a site plan for the industrial development. He stated the plat process is very strictly dictated by the State Enabling Legislation and it dictates what the applicant and the local government has to do. The purpose of the approval process for plats is to regulate the division and to protect the public safety and welfare. It protects both the property owners and the property owners to be, as well as the public.



Mr. Arroyo stated the process starts out with a Tentative Preliminary Plat which is the first plat that shows the proposed division of the property, the roadway and other important information that is required. It comes to the Planning Commission for a Public Hearing who makes a recommendation to the City Council. Once a recommendation is made to the City Council, that is the end of the Planning Commission involvement directly with the plat process with the exception of other permits that may be required for approval. The City Council is the body that approves the Tentative Preliminary Plat and they have to do it within 90 days of receiving original submittal. At the same time the City Council is acting, there are a number of different State and local agencies that are reviewing the plat as well. There is the Road Commission, the Drain Commission, DEQ, MDOT, Local and State Health Departments all act within 30 days, once this is done, the Tentative Preliminary Plat is approved.


The next step is the Final Preliminary Plat which is primarily in the hands of City Council. There may be other agencies who will get customary copes but in terms of approval, it rests primarily with City Council.


After that, it gets into the Subdivision Engineering Drawings which is something that is addressed primarily Administratively at the City level through Consultants and Staff. They look at detailed plans for construction of roads and utilities. At the same time, the plans are submitted to various State and local agencies so they can look at the detailed construction drawings to make sure they meet their standards. Once the Subdivision Engineering Drawings are approved and Final Preliminary Plat is approved, the applicant is in a position where they can apply for construction permits for the roads and utilities.


The next step is the Final Plat, the process is to submit it to the County Treasurer, the Drain Commission and the Road Commission. It then goes to the City Council for final action, then to the County Plat Board and the State Department of Commerce. Finally it is recorded with the County Register of Deeds.








(Member Hoadley made a request of the Planning Department, however, his comments were not clearly heard on tape, voice was muffled)




Moved by Hoadley, seconded by Canup, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To adjourn the Regular Meeting of the Planning Commission at 11:00 p.m.



Yes: Bononi, Canup, Csordas, Hoadley, Weddington

No: None


Steve Rumple - Staff Planner

Transcribed by: Diane H. Vimr

February 24, 1998

Date Approved: March 18, 1998