TUESDAY - JULY 11, 1995




The Meeting was called to order at 7:32 p.m., with Chairman Antosiak presiding.





PRESENT: Members Bauer, Harris, Antosiak, Harrington,

Brennan, Reinke, Baty (alternate)




ALSO PRESENT: Donald M. Saven - Building Official

Greg Capote - Staff Planner

Alan Amolsch - Ordinance Enforcement Officer

Nancy McKernan - Recording Secretary





Chairman Antosiak indicated we have a quorum. The Meeting is now in session. The Zoning Board of Appeals is a hearing board empowered by the Novi City Charter to hear appeals seeking variances from Novi Zoning Ordinances and their application as enforced and reviewed by the building department. It takes a vote of at least four (4) Members to grant a variance request. We have a full Board tonight, therefore, any decision made will be final.






Member Reinke indicated since we have 2 cases by the same petitioner; Case No. 95-063 and 95-070; I would move that Case No. 95-070 be moved up and combined with 95-063.


Seconded by Chairman Antosiak,




Chairman Antosiak indicated we will amend the agenda to handle Case No. 95-070 immediately after or concurrent with Case No. 95-063.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Bauer,







PAGE 2 JULY 11, 1995





Moved by Member Bauer,


Seconded by Member Reinke,








Chairman Antosiak indicated this is the Public Remarks portion of our Meeting. All comments related to cases before the Board this evening will be heard at the time of that case. However, if anyone in the audience would like to address the Board on any matter not related to a specific case; this is the time to do so. Is there anyone in the audience who would like to come forward and speak to the Board?


No one wished to be heard.





Continuation of case filed by The Kensington Corporation requesting a use variance to allow for the construction of two (2) separate buildings of light industrial use, which are not permitted in the OS-2 zoning district for property located at 46700 Grand River Avenue. The property is currently zoned OS-2 (Planned Office District).


Wilfred Brunk, attorney for The Kensington Corporation was present.

Wilfred Brunk indicated this is a continuation of a presentation which began at last month's meeting. During the process of our presentation several members of the Board asked for additional information as to what the marketing efforts were with regard to the sale or lease of this property over the past 5 years. I have provided some exhibits along with my cover letter, which indicated that the property had been under listing with Signature Associates; a general informational brochure on the typical approach that Signature Associates utilizes when they are marketing properties; and I have attached copies of the only 2 offers which were received with regard to the property over the course of that 5 year representation until they recently received the offer to purchase which was the purpose for our request to be allowed to construct the 2 additional buildings.


Wilfred Brunk indicated I think that you will see that when you review the purchase offers that the only offers that were received were lease offers with purchase options which were exercisable only REGULAR, ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

PAGE 3 JULY 11, 1995


at the option of the lessee and that the lease offers for the property provided a fairly modest compensation to the property owner. Barely sufficient to cover the real estate taxes with no return on the investment.


Wilfred Brunk indicated this a 19.2 acre parcel, it has been used for more than 25 years for the same purposes that we seek to use it in the future; which is heavy equipment repair and storage. We would ask for the ability to construct 2 additional buildings on the property to continue that use.


Wilfred Brunk indicated of the buildings that are going to be constructed, one of the concerns that was expressed was that "why are 2 buildings necessary? Why can't it be done with one building?" We have gone to the purchaser and he has indicated to us that the reason for separate facilities is because the type of repair operations for the heavy equipment requires different buildings with different ceiling heights and different inventory of parts, and different mechanics to work to work on the bull dozers and the heavy earth moving equipment. That is the reason for requiring 2 structures as opposed to a single structure to augment the use.


Wilfred Brunk indicated if you look at the entire project as a whole, we are not talking about adding 2 fairly good sized buildings on a small parcel; this is a 20 acre parcel in size. It already contains 3 buildings that total just over 10,000 square foot in size and the 2 buildings that we are being asked to allow to construct would total approximately 20,000 square feet.


Wilfred Brunk indicated I emphasize to you that it would not change the character of the use of the property; nor would it put the property out of character with all of the surrounding properties. They are all essentially being used for heavy and light industrial purposes.


Wilfred Brunk indicated I did bring with me, it wasn't capable of reproduction, an example of the marketing brochures that were prepared by Signature Associates and distributed to potential purchasers. (copy handed to Board)


Wilfred Brunk indicated I am ready to answer any questions that you may have to assist you in making a decision.


Chairman Antosiak indicated as I mentioned at the last meeting, there was a total of 17 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was a total of 2 written responses received voicing approval. Copies in file.






PAGE 4 JULY 11, 1995


There was no audience participation.





Building Department had no comment.


Member Bauer inquired by adding these 2 buildings it puts you at the advantage of selling the property for the million two; is that correct?


Wilfred Brunk indicated yes, it does. This is the only viable offer that has been received during the time that the property has been offered for sale. During the time that it has been offered for sale there have been several zoning changes with regard to that strip of Grand River, as I am sure that you are well aware.


Member Brennan indicated if your request were granted, then we have now doubled the use of this property in a nonconforming state and it probably makes it ever so likely that it would ever be developed under the zoning that it is, which is OS-2. There is probably some concern by some Members on this Board that the planning people in this community have suggested that is what that should be. Granting the variance would make it ever so likely that it would ever get that way, which is a problem that some of us are probably dealing with.


Wilfred Brunk indicated I can understand your concern, and I think it is a valid point that you are raising. But, I think that if you also look at the history for this particular strip of Grand River and the office zoning district which has been imposed upon it, there has not been any development which comports the zoning ordinance so perhaps this was not a wise zoning application for this particular strip of land. It has long been used as industrial property and it appears that will be its continued use in the future.


Member Reinke indicated I think until the whole area changes and I think that economics is going to govern and demand what goes on out there, for right now I think that the current usage is going to stay what it is. To put 2 additional buildings there, I don't think they are really going to be a problem for the area as far as usage. So, I see no real problem with the petitioner's request.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated I am looking at your brochure. What is the date of this brochure?


Wilfred Brunk indicated I believe that if you will look on the back cover that was a 1994 publication.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired is it your representation to the Board that this property has been continuously listed with


PAGE 5 JULY 11, 1995


Signature for the last 5 years?


Wilfred Brunk indicated yes.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired what have the listing prices been over those 5 years?


Wilfred Brunk indicated I believe that the asking price for the property originated at a million 475, I believe and the asking price has not changed with the years. But, all offers have been solicited.


Member Harris indicated I do have a problem with granting a variance for a party that is going to end up purchasing, without having an idea as to what those buildings are in fact going to look like, used for....we have some general idea. It is a significant change in the nonconformity and although I believe that economics do in fact drive these kinds of issues I guess I am still not convinced that the property couldn't be used. I think that currently is probably the operative there. Is there more information that you can tell us about what these buildings would actually look like or appear like. I know that we saw the drawing in terms of where the foot prints would be, but compared to the other buildings; the type of construction, the exterior look to these....


Wilfred Brunk indicated there have been no architectural renderings prepared because the purpose of our coming to the Zoning Board of Appeals is to find out whether we could get your approval for the construction of buildings as a conceptual matter. The preparation of a site plan and taking the site plan for review by the appropriate boards would be the next step as opposed to creating a site plan and taking it for approval and then you would still have to look to the Zoning Board of Appeals to find out whether you can even construct. It is similar to the approach that was presented last month by another petitioner; where conceptually we are asking can we be allowed to do this? Any construction on the property would be required to comply with the zoning ordinance with regard to setback and site plan development and site plan review.


Member Harris indicated the difference in my mind with a speculative variance, which in fact would be in my mind, is that you would no longer be the owner of the piece of property and that any commitment made; that commitment would change hands along the way. Are you prepared, to represent the Waterland Trucking Service if that is the company buying it; or has in fact has agreed or empowered you to mae the kinds of commitments you would be making for Kensington?


Wilfred Brunk indicated I do not represent Waterland Trucking Company in any capacity. They are the prospective purchaser and I


PAGE 6 JULY 11, 1995


represent only the Kensington Corporation. I would like to answer your questions in a positive manner but I cannot make any representations on behalf of Waterland Trucking; I simply have no authority to do so.


Member Harris indicated I appreciate your telling me that. But, I do have a problem with granting a variance to a petitioner that in essence is not here before us.


Member Reinke indicated as far as building wise, it would have to meet all codes that everybody else has to meet. I can't see really where that could be a potential problem. It is going to be a vehicle service type of building which is going to be similar to the building that is there in existence now, a pole type nature to service vehicles whether they be trucks or whether they be earth movers, back hoes or whatever they would be. That is really not going to change. It is an industrial nature. The nature of it is not changing. When the economics change in that area that will change the usage of it.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated my differing opinion with Mr. Reinke is that City Council which represents the government of this City has spoken as to what the projected future use of this property is; which is office, not the industrial expansion that is proposed here. My difficulty isn't whether or not you should be permitted to continue that use and that is not even before us, the issue is whether you should be allowed to double the size of that use. I have a major difficulty with that.


Wilfred Brunk indicated the only response that I can make is that the use of the property in terms of equipment storage and repair would not change. We would simply have 2 additional buildings with which to conduct some of the operations under cover as opposed to out in the outside world. The storage of heavy equipment and machinery on the property has been allowed, and will continue to be allowed as a grandfathered use. The only question is can some of the repair activity actually take place under cover as opposed to having the equipment or machinery stored out in the open. I don't know that this type of a use would increase traffic or density or congestion.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired how do you distinguish, if you can, your situation from that of your neighbor to the east and your neighbor to the west and your neighbors 2 down who will have similar difficulties marketing the property as office zoned, and they come to us and say that "we want a variance just like you gave him, because if we double our structure size and double our usage we can then sell the property as a more attractive, economic proposition. Why are you different from everyone else up and down that strip?



PAGE 7 JULY 11, 1995


Wilfred Brunk indicated I don't that the situation is marketedly different. Every person who has property on that strip of Grand River in the industrial corridor is going to face the same difficulties when they try and sell their property or when they try to utilize it as is mentioned by Mr. Reinke. The economics are not driving the office market. This property has been used historically as industrial and that does not appear to be changing.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated perhaps the purchase price is the difficulty and not the usage.


Wilfred Brunk indicated I am sure that if the purchase price was zero, someone would step forward and buy it. I am not sure that was the intent of the City commission in rezoning the property, to take the value of every property owner along this strip.


Member Brennan indicated I would just like to make a further comment of what I said earlier. The City has gone through a series of changes; there are a number of horse farms that are now subdivisions. There are industrial sites that are being converted for other purposes. Certainly as the City expands, which it has done and will continue to do, some of these industrial sites will change. In time what may have been a gravel pit will become a very popular lakeside residential community. So, things change. The plan for the City is that area and that parcel will be office, that is the way that it is zoned, that is the way that is planned and along with some other Board Members I have a difficult time in looking at expanding or doubling the nonconforming use as it is today.


Member Bauer indicated I know that the Planning Commission and their projection was going to do Grand River. I was just wondering if they had in mind any changes in this OS-2, OS-1.



Greg Capote indicated no there is no mind set either from the administration or from the Planning Commission or any of the sub- committees from that body to propose any changes in the OS-2 ordinance with the exception of the PD4 option as underlined in only some of the areas that are zoned OS-2 and that being the OS-3 proposal as of late.


Moved by Vice-Chairman Harrington,


Seconded by Member Harris,







PAGE 8 JULY 11, 1995





Mark Churella is requesting a variance for frontage on a public street to construct a single family residence at 21075 Cambridge Drive. A variance ia also requested to allow two (2) one-family dwellings on the property.


Mark Churella was present and sworn.


Mark Churella indicated we purchased the parcel of property last year, 3 1/2 acres on Cambridge Drive a private drive in Novi. The parcel is 21075 Cambridge Drive. We have been working with an architect since last year in September; anticipating the construction of a new single family residence there. The single family residence will be approximately 7600 square feet. In addition to that the basement structure will be approximately 5500 square feet of which 3300 will be an exposed lower level. The house will be on the 3 1/2 acre parcel approximately 150 feet back from the centerline of the front lot line. There is an existing structure on that parcel currently; it is a small home that is approximately 1400 square feet constructed in 1933. A revision was made to that house and renovated in 1977.


Mark Churella indicated we are looking for 2 things. One: we do not abut a public thoroughfare and have 150 feet of access and we would need a zoning variance to allow us to build on a private drive. Number 2: the existing residence after having it inspected and looked at, in our architects mind and in my wife, Leslie's and mine it would make an appropriate pool house for the estate that we plan on building. We would ask that you would allow us to consider that house as an outbuilding and use that as a pool house along with the new dwelling that we plan to build.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 13 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was one written response received voicing approval. Copy in file.





There was no audience participation.





Don Saven had no comment.


Member Bauer inquired the 2 dwellings that you also want to have there, are they garage and the existing two story home?


Mark Churella indicated there is an existing garage connected by a small breezeway to the existing residence that is on there. It is a garage that would approximate one car. It is a small wood


PAGE 9 JULY 11, 1995


structure which is also in good repair. We would look to use that as a storage shed for whatever implements that we would have; lawn tractors and such.


Member Bauer inquired so your 2 dwellings would be your home plus the pool house, so to speak?


Mark Churella indicated there is another small dwelling. It is the pump house that appears on that parcel that houses the existing well as well as a Detroit Edison transformer. That s also a part off this property. If it would help anyone out, I do have photographs of the buildings as well as the out buildings, if you would care to,


Member Brennan inquired you mentioned a pool, it is not shown on the layout; where do expect that, is that just north of this existing 2 story residence?


Mark Churella indicated yes, we have 2 options for the pool. We met with the landscape architect today; a Mr. Carl Johnson, from the firm of Johnson, Johnson and Roy and he had shown us a couple of options. One would be to set the pool off to the side. directly in front of the pool house which would be to the southwest corner of the parcel. It is not to the immediate southwest but it is where the tree line is. One of the concerns that we have with this parcel of property is the fact that there is some monument oak trees that were planted that are upwards of almost 100 years old to the front. There are 4 groupings of very large pine trees which are almost 100 feet in height to the front of the parcel. We had approximately 30 apple trees that are over 50 to 60 years old; we have removed the apple trees and most of them were in very poor shape. We have been able to keep 5 of the apple trees on the parcel. Our plan would be to locate that pool pretty close to that even though it is not indicated on the site plan right now.


Member Brennan inquired does the garage stay with the plan?


Mark Churella indicated yes, the garage as I mentioned is attached with a breezeway to the existing structure. We didn't see any reason at this point to want to destroy the garage structure. It appears to be very good storage. It is not that we are going to have great demand to ever park a car in that garage. The new structure has a 4 1/2 car garage that will be built with it. But, it just seemed like even though we couldn't find any significant historical value to this parcel or to the house itself, it has been around for a long time. It has a real interesting country flavor to it and frankly it is very nice back there. It is secluded to the back parcel or the back portion of the parcel. We just felt that it would be appropriate to look to retain it and to use that as a pool house as opposed to leveling it and then coming back at a later time to ask if we can construct an out building for the


PAGE 10 JULY 11, 1995


same purpose.


Mark Churella indicated in addition, if it would be of any benefit, I do have renderings of what the elevation of the new house looks like if you would like to see that in comparison to what we are going to keep.


Member Bauer inquired what is the square footage of the new home?


Mark Churella indicated the new home is 7600 square feet, excluding the basement. The basement will have an additional exposed lower level that will be finished off and there will be 3300 square feet finished in the lower level. In addition to that there is space over the garage area which will not be completed at the point of the original construction, which would serve as an additional in-laws quarters or guest quarters if you will and that will be approximately 620 square feet.


Don Saven indicated I would like to have Mr. Churella indicate to the Board what our phone conversation was this afternoon relative to your intentions with the house or your never intentions with this secondary home, please.


Mark Churella indicated in my discussion with Mr. Saven today, it was directed that our intentions are never to use this house as a rental dwelling. We do not plan to make this sort of investment on the estate to have a tenant in the back of us. It is specifically to be used as an out building or a pool house. There are no plans to use this as an additional income bearing source for us. Nor at any time do we plan on coming back to ask for a split of this property. We purchased the parcel of property for a couple of important reasons. Number one we support the idea of the estate sized lot of 3 and 1/2 acres. Number two we enjoy the seclusion that is provided back there. Number three the woodlands that we have and even though this particular parcel and when the gentleman that represents the City in regards to the woodland issue came out, none of these trees are platted on the City plat. This parcel of property shows there is no trees on any of it and yet it has some of the most important trees, in our opinion, in most of the City. Some of the oldest and most valuable. The entire woodlands area immediately behind the proposed pool house structure is going to be preserved which is pretty close to 3/4 of an acre. It is a natural woodlands buffer. Again, it is our intention just to keep the parcel in the state that it was or to maximize as many of the original trees as possible.


Member Harris inquired of Don Saven. Does the well house building count as a detached structure?


Don Saven indicated if we are asking about the unit that is 9'9" by 10'6"; that would be a detached structure.


PAGE 11 JULY 11, 1995


Member Harris indicated that would have to be considered.


Don Saven indicated for the total accessory structure, yes.


Member Harris indicated it is a significant looking building compared to some of the things that we have seen before us.


Member Harris inquired what would the hardship be in this situation that you are asking us to consider in order to maintain this separate second dwelling?


Mark Churella indicated I feel that the deliberate hardship would be to have to pay for the cost of demolition, which would range from anywhere 9 to 15,000 dollars from the people who came out to give me that cost estimate. Then to reconstruct a pool house of relatively the same size would probably cost in excess of 50 or 60,000 dollars. I feel that in order to put this house in order as a pool house it would be relatively inexpensive in comparison to having to demolish it and then to come back and to ask to rebuild this with almost the exact same type of structure.


Member Harris indicated that is assuming that you would find an agreement from this Board to have a pool house built.


Mark Churella indicated that is correct.


Member Harris indicated I, at this point, find it difficult to accept that the second residence is appropriate or that any hardship actually exists. Economics set aside, because that is not one of our conditions for hardship. I really see no reason for to support the second request or the request for the second building. I do believe that it is appropriate to grant the variance that you are not on a thoroughfare just based by the nature of the neighborhood that you live in.


Member Reinke indicated if you are not going to grant that, he doesn't need the second thoroughfare.


Mark Churella indicated maybe I am missing one point here. My understanding was that I needed the variance just even to build the new house on the parcel as one issue; the next issue is the fact that this existing residence which is one there which is causing no hardship to anybody currently, you are asking to demolish a perfectly good structure that can be utilized as an outbuilding, pool house. Many times my understanding is in the City of Novi that you have made the statement that you are looking for RA residential lots of not less than one acre. You are looking for the fact that people are going to make substantial investments in Novi to build estate sized properties. I would hold out to you that in the adjoining communities of Bloomfield Hills, West Bloomfield that as opposed to the exception the norm is that many


PAGE 12 JULY 11, 1995


of these homes have detached dwellings that our pool houses, that our structures that would be in conformity with what I am looking to do. The investment that I am looking to make on this parcel of property, even though the financial concern of having to remove it and then coming back to this governing body to ask for that variance. It appears to me to be a very reasonable thing. On a parcel that is 3 and 1/2 acres, that is very well situated for an out building, a pool house, to be allowed to have such. I am not looking at a tract house development here. I am not looking at an encroachment on neighbors property. I am looking at a 3 and 1/2 acre parcel in which I feel that it is very valid to be able to retain such a dwelling as a pool house.


Member Harris indicated I understand each of those points. My sense is though is that this is a self created hardship and in fact on its' own merit doesn't arise to the level of a variance for the second dwelling. I do believe, as I said, that the need to have a thoroughfare variance in order to build the principle house that you are looking to build is appropriate based upon the private drive. I still see no basis for the second.


Member Baty indicated I disagree with that. Looking at the size of the home that is proposed to be constructed versus the existing structure; it is not much different than your average sized home with a child's play house out back. It seems appropriate and it does seem like a waste to me to knock the building down and then to reconstruct it. It doesn't seem very efficient.


Member Brennan indicated my comments were along the same line. It is a common sense decision for me and I agree with the petitioner. He intends to build a pool. He intends to have a pool house. Why demolish a perfectly good dwelling, because we won't grant a variance? He is going to construct a pool house in the end anyway. Additionally I would suggest that if there some concerns about what may happen to this property in the future or their future plans or what may change that we tie any agreements to ownership of this particular parcel to this particular person. If it changes hands, it automatically comes back before this Board. I think that he has presented a logical case. It makes sense. I don't have any problem with it.


Member Reinke indicated looking at the size of this home; this configuration is not going to change. What he has laid out here, he has a natural setting for a pool in the configuration between the house and the existing structure which he would change to conform over to a pool house. With the investment that this gentleman is making, I don't think there is a question in his mind that the existing structure is going to adapt along with his main principle structure. I can totally support the petitioners' request.



PAGE 13 JULY 11, 1995


Member Bauer indicated we could also tie it in, if we do go along with it, that the structure will not be used for any rental purposes.


Don Saven indicated I would just like to make a comment. If it is the intent of this individual to keep the structure as a pool structure then I would strongly suggest that if you do go through an approval that it be an accessory building. I think that would probably handle the situation better than being 2 dwelling units.


Member Brennan inquired for the purpose of resale? So it can't be designated as a residential site?


Don Saven indicated that is correct.


Mark Churella indicated prior to your vote, there is one last thing. Prior to sending this to the Zoning Board of Appeals, we had put together the entire building plan and submitted it to the City of Novi and Mr. Saven's office. It has since gone through the review, through your consultants JCK and the Building Department. They are at the point now where I believe they are relatively close to being satisfied with either today or tomorrow and I would ask at this point that you would also consider to waive the 5 day waiting period prior to me being able to pull a building permit.


Moved by Member Bauer,


Seconded by Member Brennan,




Discussion on motion:


Member Reinke inquired do we have to add the pump house to this motion?


Don Saven indicated I believe that I would. Strictly for the fact just as a coverall in this particular situation. Only because in looking at the garage sizes relative to the RA zoning district and this being also an accessory structure, recognizing this now as an accessory structure. I think we should cover that particular area. Take into consideration all shown structures on the plan.




Member Harris inquired just for the sake of clarity, even though I don't support the motion, is the garage although it is detached considered part of that structure or is that a separate accessory


PAGE 14 JULY 11, 1995


structure as well?


Don Saven indicated the garage is considered an accessory structure and it tabulated in the sum total of all square footage for the accessory structures. That is why I wanted to make sure...


Member Harris inquired so there are 3 accessory structures?


Don Saven indicated that is correct.


Member Harris indicated I am not sure the motion considers that.


Member Bauer indicated you are allowed one.


Don Saven inquired in this particular case are you talking about a detached accessory structure and that is covered, I believe, in the R4 and R3 zoning district. The RA and R1 is allowed to have more than just one.


Member Brennan indicated the garage is not a separate building, that is attached to the house.


Don Saven indicated this garage as shown on the plan is part of the principle building itself.


Member Brennan indicated I think that Jerry is talking about this garage here.


Don Saven indicated that is considered one.


Member Harris indicated I think that the motion also failed to address the commitments about the use of the building. I would like to see that included.


Member Bauer indicated it is an accessory building, it can't be used as a residence.


Member Harris indicated I understand that, but there were several other commitments that......


Don Saven inquired do you have the pictures? Let's take a look at them one more time, to be sure.


Member Brennan inquired of Member Harris, what specifically do you have in mind?


Member Harris indicated that it would be used as a pool house, that it wouldn't be used for guests, that it basically be used as represented.


Member Brennan inquired of Mr. Churella, do you have any problem


PAGE 15 JULY 11, 1995


with that?


Mark Churella indicated no, I have no problem with that.


Member Harris indicated and that it be limited to this petitioner only.


Member Bauer indicated I have no problem with that.


Mark Churella inquired the last comment, that it is limited to this petitioner only; does that mean at some time in the future if I ever go to sell this house that person who purchases the house has to come back here or I would have to tear that house down prior to selling it? I am just a little confused. My plan is to live here, but, when he said that I was just wondering. Does this mean only for as long as I am alive?


Member Brennan indicated as long as you own that piece of property.

Mark Churella indicated as long as I own that piece of property, the minute I sell that piece of property the person that purchases that piece of property will need to come back in front of this body in order to get.....


Member Brennan indicated only if they have another use intended for it.


Mark Churella indicated I understand, that is fine.


Member Brennan inquired is that correct?


Member Bauer indicated no, they would have to come back before this Board.


Member Harris indicated if it is limited to this petitioner then the variance ends when this petitioner is no longer the owner. That is why I asked if that was to be considered. It was one of the conditions that was cited at the table.


Member Reinke indicated I don't think that this is something...if we are allowing this usage and the usage is going to stay the same; what do we really need to address?


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated I concur with Mr. Reinke, I don't think needs to be a part of the motion. There is no harm or evil that would be avoided by including that; other than the fact that someone else may own the property.


Member Reinke indicated that is right. The usage is not going to change. The main concern here is that this is not going to be a rental property. That stipulation, I think, should hold.


PAGE 16 JULY 11, 1995


Mark Churella indicated I would be glad to put that stipulation in, that it is not my intention to have this as a rental property.


Member Reinke indicated as far as to say that it is for him only and that if somebody would buy it would have to come back, I see no reason for that.


Member Bauer inquired an accessory building cannot be used for residential purposes, can it?


Don Saven indicated that is correct.


Member Bauer indicated then we don't have to limit that.


Don Saven indicated for a point of clarification, I just wanted to view the drawings to indicate that there is a connection between the garage and the existing structure that is to be used as a pool house. If I was to take a look at that, if it was to be considered an accessory structure I would probably looking at it as a unit. If it was detached I would have thought of it as being something else.


Member Bauer indicated then there is nothing else to add.


Moved by Member Bauer,


Seconded by Member Reinke,




Discussion on motion:


Nancy McKernan inquired what about the road frontage?


Don Saven indicated that would be the first part of the variance.


Chairman Antosiak indicated as I understand Mr. Bauer's motion it was to include both the accessory buildings and the allowance of not being on a public road.




Chairman Antosiak indicated your request for a variance has been granted. The 5 day waiting period will be waived.





John Flanagan is requesting a variance to the Home Occupation Ordinance, Section 210c to allow for the retail sales of fire arms


PAGE 17 JULY 11, 1995


in his home located at 23948 E. LeBost Drive.


No one was present at this time. Case will be recalled at the end of the meeting.





Lorna Penn is requesting a variance of 71 inches to allow for the construction of a deck and a 2'4" side yard setback variance to allow for the construction of a boat house on the existing garage at 1929 West Lake Dr.


Kenneth Penn indicated we also have 2 replies that were dropped off at the house.


Kenneth Penn was present and duly sworn.


Kenneth Penn indicated on 95-063 the requested variance on the deck first of all. The deck is to be aligned with the front of the house. It keeps the lines of the structure the same and it is actually the only place that we have to put the deck since we can't move the house. It is just right out front or the lake side of the house. The front of the house is 3'4" from the fence line. The existing fence line that is there now. The house kind of tapers, it doesn't run true with the fence line. The actual deck will be 12' wide and 20' long, which conforms with the front of the house. The side yard variance, from what I understand, is the only problem that we have and like I said the deck runs consistent with the actual front of the house or the lake.


Kenneth Penn indicated I was at the ZBA last year when we built the garage and there were 2 existing sheds (accessory structures) and the ZBA recommended that both of them be removed. One of them is down at this time. We called it a boat house for the reason that we need the storage area for all of the activities that consist of living on the lake. We need a secured area to lock items up. Fishing boxes, fishing poles, cushions, skis, knee boards, tubes and anything that deals with the lake. This is the area that we were using in our old shed and the ZBA recommended last year that instead of a separate accessory structure beside the garage that perhaps we could incorporate both of them and this would be the plan to take care of that.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 35 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was a total of 4 written responses received voicing approval. Copies in file.


Kenneth Penn indicated I also have one from the Phelps.


Chairman Antosiak indicated you can bring that one forward. This is another approval. Copy in file.


PAGE 18 JULY 11, 1995





There was no audience participation.





Don Saven inquired of Mr. Penn. On your proposed deck, does it project out any farther than the adjacent structure? I would assume that would be to the south as the gentleman indicated that he didn't have any problems there.


Kenneth Penn indicated to the south, the 1927 property no it doesn't proceed beyond the front of that house.


Don Saven indicated basically he is keeping things in line with the existing structures that area there right now.


Member Reinke inquired on the proposed boat house is this something that is going to be new, or are you moving the existing shed onto the garage?


Kenneth Penn indicated this will be all new. The pitch in the roof will match the existing pitch of the garage, it will be sided the same vinyl siding as the garage and the old one will be totally demolished and removed.


Member Reinke indicated with the proposed deck since it is not protruding out of the side of the house, the addition is not protruding into the side yard further than the existing building, the boat house is not protruding more than the existing garage. I have no problem with the petitioner's request. I think it is a great improvement to the area.


Chairman Antosiak inquired you said one of the existing sheds has been removed already and the other one will be removed if the boat house is constructed?


Kenneth Penn indicated it will be removed regardless, that was with the ZBA approving the garage last year.


Moved by Member Reinke,


Seconded by Member Bauer,









PAGE 19 JULY 11, 1995


Lorna Penn is requesting a 8.92' side yard setback variance to allow for the construction of an addition at 1929 West Lake Drive.


Kenneth Penn indicated maintaining the basic structure of the existing house, the proposed addition is at the other front of the house. It is basically going to be a family room style addition. Right now our basic living quarters are approximately 570 square feet on the ground floor with an additional 150 square feet which is a utility room, giving a ground floor square footage of 720 square feet. The addition which is 12 by 24 would be another or an additional 288 square feet on the ground floor, giving 1008 square feet of living space on the ground floor. There is also a second story which is 415 square feet.


Kenneth Penn indicated it boils down to that it is just basic, our family is getting bigger, we need more room, we are running into each other and it is a small family room addition off of the back of the house.


Kenneth Penn indicated the Farrington's whose address is immediately next door and I carry on conversations quite a bit, the address is 1931 and they have no problem with it at all. They are real good people to work with and I am sure that there will be no further problems anywhere down the line. We have a good understanding and if there is we will work them out. That is the way that we have been so far, and it has been working out real well.


Chairman Antosiak indicated notices were sent to the same 35 people and the same 4 responded with approvals. Mr. Penn has given me another response from Gary Phillips 1905 West Lake, copy in file.





There was no audience participation.





Don Saven indicated to Kenneth Penn. Number one the 13 inches in your overhang, should the Board decide to approve the variance, that you minimize the overhang to a minimum of at least 6 inches and that you control the roof run off. Gutters to be installed on that particular side. Also the fact that based on the fact that side is located pretty close to the property line you are going to take into account some additional fire protection that is necessary on that wall. I just want you to be aware of that.


Kenneth Penn indicated yes, absolutely. That is one of the reasons there is no window on that side also, we met with Terry about a month ago and he informed us on the fire wall.



PAGE 20 JULY 11, 1995


Don Saven indicated it is important that you take that into account and the roof run off.


Member Baty inquired which neighbor was it that said about the 4 foot, the next door neighbor or???


Chairman Antosiak indicated Gary Phillips, 1905 West Lake. I would presume that might be 2 houses down.


Kenneth Penn indicated that is probably 4 or 5.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Reinke,








Yvonne Cox is requesting a variance of 63 inches to allow for the continued placement of an existing deck in the side yard at 24344 Pine Cres in the Meadowbrook Glens subdivision.


Ken Cox was present and duly sworn.


Ken Cox indicated there is an existing deck on this home that was built in approximately 1972. Yvonne Cox bought the place in 1977 and the deck was existing at that point. We are requesting to refurbish the deck; it is getting old and rotten. Just to replace what is existing there at the time. It has an existing permanent gas grill on the outside edge of this if we were to have to take this apart. The doorwall facing on the north side originally was built into the house at about 3 feet above grade. Obviously, the deck was probably put on when the house was built. We are just asking to replace what is existing there.


Ken Cox indicated I have a letter from surrounding neighbors that is notarized if you would like to see it.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 41 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was one written approval received. Copy in file. Mr. Cox has just given me a statement from Mr. Ernie Swindlehurst, copy in file.






There was no audience participation.


PAGE 21 JULY 11, 1995





Don Saven indicated I have no problem with it.


Member Harris inquired are you planning on rebuilding the deck in the exact same place as the current one exists?


Ken Cox indicated that is exactly what is planned to do. As on the print, that is what is existing and that is what will be replaced.

Member Reinke indicated I don't like it. It is undersized for the entrance door coming out to this deck is, I don't know how else you can deal with what it is other than what is there. I think it was poor planning and building design. But, the design is there and we have to work with what is there.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Bauer,








Daniel Love is seeking a variance to allow a fence to be placed in the front of the home, which is not normally permitted, for property located at 1533 East Lake Rd.


Daniel Love was present and duly sworn.


Daniel Love indicated I am here to request a variance to put a fence in the front of our house. We have always had this problem ever since the kids have been old enough to play out in the yard. The way that our house is placed we have about 7 feet behind our house for any kind of a playing area if you would say. We wanted to put everything up front for them to play. But, the problem is every time you turn your head for a few seconds they were either on Lashbrook or East Lake Drive playing out there. Lashbrook isn't as bad, but when you get on East Lake Drive it could be real dangerous for the kids.


Daniel Love indicated these are my 2 daughters, and they like to play whenever it is nice. It gets hard without some way of keeping them in the yard.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 36 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was 2 written responses received


PAGE 22 JULY 11, 1995


both voicing approval. Copies in file.





There was no audience participation.





Don Saven indicated I am just looking at this plot plan and it is amazing that Chattman Drive was not vacated. Wouldn't that certainly be a hardship! But, the condition that I have is that I have no problems with it providing that he would put the fence back from his property line approximately 5 feet. I would take a look at that if the Board so chooses and that would give him some area for his children to pay.


Member Reinke inquired so you are talking about that it would be 20 feet from the building edge rather than the 25 that he has listed here?


Don Saven indicated he is on a corner lot which makes things extremely difficult for him to do anything. He has shown what I can see is approximately 27 feet from his house. So, if he kept it back it would be 22 foot. That is just a suggestion, because the fact that there is a right of way involved and being more specific about the right of way to be concerned that he is off of that particular area.


Daniel Love indicated we are just going up to the edge of the deck. We won't be going in the area near East Lake Drive for visibility or that stuff.


Member Harris inquired the area that you have drawn on this plan with the dotted lines, is that the area that you would like to put the fence? That would come out basically along the side of the driveway out to Lashbrook and along Lashbrook to your property line and then back to the back and across the back to the house again in the back corner?


Daniel Love indicated yes.


Member Harris indicated I think that what Mr. Saven is talking about is along Lashbrook; that it would need to be at least 5 feet back from the property line for public safety.


Don Saven indicated I would prefer to be more comfortable in that area because bringing the fence right up to the property line is not a good condition. Any work that would have to be done in the right of way, there is a chance of damage. The visibility of the 25 feet corner visibility is there.



PAGE 23 JULY 11, 1995


Member Harris indicated even though this house is addressed on East Lake Drive, the front yard that we are talking about here is the front yard on Lashbrook and putting it there. Just so there is clarity to what we are talking about.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired of Daniel Love. Do you have any pets like dogs?


Daniel Love indicated no, not right now.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired would it be your plan to also use this fenced in area for pets?


Daniel Love indicated I don't project a dog in the real near future, with me being a partner in the store; we don't have the time for animals. The kids keep my wife busy enough, she would like to; she would like to rest for few minutes without having them go out in the road.


Member Baty inquired what is the reason the yard couldn't be fenced in the that I understand this hardship?


Don Saven indicated I think that if you take into account the front building line, the front building line is established on a corner lot the same on both streets, so he would have to come back 30 foot on each side or where the front building line is established by the existing structure. He does have a very minimal area for placing a fence.


Daniel Love indicated it is very tight. All the houses around there are real tight.


Don Saven inquired do you have a door on that side?


Daniel Love indicated no. In the back part of our house, we have a doorwall but we have kind of a big drop. When we built the house it really wasn't for that lot. But we like the cape code style.


Member Brennan inquired you don't intend this to be a cyclone fence?


Daniel Love indicated is going to be a picket fence. It is going to look nice. We will keep it painted all of the time. We have done a lot of stuff every year to the house and to improve the area.


Member Harris inquired what is the distance from your lot line at the street to the outside edge of the sidewalk, do you know the distance from the sidewalk that runs from your porch to your driveway?


PAGE 24 JULY 11, 1995


Daniel Love indicated I am not sure, I just know from the house to the street is 27 feet, but I am not sure.


Member Reinke indicated I think that we have a consensus here that it is going to have to be 5 feet back off of the property line. The thing is if he is dealing to the property line of 27 feet the maximum he can come from the house is 22 feet. That is it.


Member Harris indicated I was just looking at how much space there was with the line of the sidewalk.


Member Reinke indicated that is really immaterial, because they are going to fence that in with a gate.


Daniel Love indicated we are running the one fence along the driveway and then at the sidewalk we will have a little gate right there to go to the driveway and stuff. It will go right along the driveway on the east side.


Member Brennan indicated I will make a brief comment and then a motion. I think that the petitioner has demonstrated some hardship given the family condition and the layout of the property and the close proximity to the lake. I would have the same concerns, I have 4 kids myself.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Reinke,




Member Reinke indicated we need to state in the motion that it be at minimum 5 feet back from the street property line.








Heather Haritash is requesting a variance to allow a fence to be placed in the front yard in line with the garage and not the house as required.


Heather Haritash was present and duly sworn.


Heather Haritash indicated I am requesting to include the property behind my garage to be fenced in. I live on a corner lot. It creates a hardship because I am considered to have 2 fronts. I


PAGE 25 JULY 11, 1995


would like to fence in the property and if it according to the zoning code the property would be very small and I want to create a safe environment as well as a large enough play area for my children. I also feel that I am penalized because my car is detached, if it was attached to my house then the fence would have to 30 feet from the street. But, since it is detached you are taking the setback distance from the house.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 31 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was one written response received voicing approval. Copy in file.





There was no audience participation.





Don Saven indicated again this is another corner lot situation. It also applies to the corner clearance of 25 feet and that will still be maintained.


Member Reinke indicated I will abstain from voting in this case, because I am within the Notification area. I would like to make a comment that I support the petitioner's request because they have 2 front yards. The existing fence line will not protrude any further than the existing garage that will not go into the side yard or the second front yard that they have. There is a building up there, we are getting more traffic in there all of the time. It is really creating a problem with young kids being out in the road before you can snap your fingers. I can see that they need this kind of relief for this situation.


Chairman Antosiak indicated I don't believe that you are required to abstain from voting just because you are in the Notice area.


Member Reinke indicated I am offering to do that; but I will leave it to your directive.


Chairman Antosiak indicated since Ms. Baty is here we will allow her to vote.


Member Bauer indicated I don't have any problems with this.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Bauer,





PAGE 26 JULY 11, 1995






Anthony Ferrazza is requesting a front yard setback variance of 6.5' and a side yard setback variance of 3.6' to allow for the construction of a garage at 41150 McMahon Circle.


Anthony Ferrazza was present and duly sworn.


Anthony Ferrazza indicated I am asking for a side yard variance and a front yard variance to put up a garage. I currently have a carport up there. My house is on a slab, I have no basement. I have no place to put my vehicles. I have kids and no place to put their bikes, where they can be safe.


Anthony Ferrazza indicated as far as the variance is I would like to keep my addition looking the same as the other homes in the subdivision that have 2 car garages. All the ones up and down the street have roughly 6 foot side clearance and as far as the front they match with what I want to do. As far as it protruding out more than the existing house, I would wish that my garage line up with the existing overhang on my house which protrudes 3 foot forward from the house. I would like to keep everything in line as to not make it look any different than any of the other homes in the subdivision. If the garage were not compatible with the rest of the houses on the street then it would bring down the value and if the garage would be smaller it would be a normal functioning 2 car garage; I need all of the space that I can get over there.


Anthony Ferrazza indicated I have made a lot of improvements on the house since I purchased it. It was a rental home for many years and when I purchased the home it was more or less like a jungle in the back. It looked really bad to say the least. I have since put up new siding, new windows, new landscaping and my neighbors are very pleased with what I have done. I would like to put up a garage and complete the house along with a utility room to go behind the garage. I currently have my washer and dryer in the kitchen and it makes it almost impossible to utilize the kitchen. You can't even have a little kitchen table where the family can eat, just because the space isn't there.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 50 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was 1 written response received with a conditional approval. Copy in file.





There was no audience participation.





PAGE 27 JULY 11, 1995


Don Saven indicated there is 2 things. One, do you have any other accessory structures on the property?


Anthony Ferrazza indicated I have a little shed in the back yard.


Don Saven inquired how big is that shed?


Anthony Ferrazza indicated 10 by 10 or 10 by 12.


Don Saven inquired is any portion of that addition going to be used for an addition or is it all going to be the proposed garage?


Anthony Ferrazza indicated part of the principal building also.


Don Saven inquired how much of that is going to be part of the principal building?


Anthony Ferrazza indicated 12 feet, which will be used for a laundry room basically. Washer, dryer, wash tub.


Don Saven inquired will that be the 12 foot by the 22 feet?


Anthony Ferrazza indicated yes.


Don Saven indicated so technically that is going to leave you with approximately 546 square feet for a 2 car garage.


Anthony Ferrazza indicated right now, with my family we can't sit at the table and have a dinner. There is just no room with the washer and dryer being there.


Don Saven indicated I am just curious because of what was mentioned by the Willowbrook Association for the fact that they would look at the request for a 2 car garage. Were they aware of the laundry room?


Anthony Ferrazza indicated I did get a plan stamped by the President of the Willowbrook Community Association.


Don Saven inquired can I see the plan, please.


Anthony Ferrazza gave the plan to Mr. Saven.


Don Saven indicated I was looking more or less at a floor plan, and this does not show me that. We should enter into the record that a portion is going to be used for a laundry room. We don't want to have any problems down the road.


Member Baty inquired 22 by 24 is standard sized?


Don Saven indicated it is pretty hefty, it would give him room to


PAGE 28 JULY 11, 1995


maneuver. I wouldn't have any problems with that.


Member Brennan inquired do you expect to have a wall separating the garage area from the laundry room area?


Anthony Ferrazza indicated yes.


Don Saven indicated that would be required by code, with a step down.


Anthony Ferrazza indicated there would be a 4 inch step down from the laundry room to the garage.


Member Harris inquired of Don Saven. The plan that you looked at, does that have the Willowbrook approval on it?


Don Saven indicated the plan that I have viewed right here, does have the approval of the Willowbrook Association, it was signed on 7-11-94 by Ann Marie, with a lot of J's and Z's


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Discussion on motion:


Member Reinke indicated this has got to be one of the world's worst laid out subdivisions that we have. There are not basements. The lots are small. We have always had a problem. It looks like he has done an excellent job of trying to utilize space. It has really been a problem there. I hope the Building Department doesn't approve any more subdivisions like that.


Anthony Ferrazza indicated the garage would be sided the same as the siding on the side of the house and on the front of the house. I want to keep everything looking good.






Continuation of case filed by Allied Signs, Inc., representing the Novi Hilton requesting a variance to replace the two (2) existing


PAGE 29 JULY 11, 1995


directional signs at 22111 Haggerty road. Proposed signs are to be 8'1" x 6' (48.75 sq. ft.) in area and 7'10" in height.


Randy Schmitt was present and duly sworn.


Randy Schmitt indicated I am sure that you are all familiar with the hotel. It has had 2 existing signs out at the entrance driveways along Haggerty Road for quite awhile. The intention here is to update the signage to the new Hilton approved logo, the new corporate identity. Additionally the hotel has restaurants in it and would like to advertise the restaurants on the signage. We will have Hilton as well as the 2 restaurants.


Randy Schmitt indicated I have an additional handout here, that wasn't part of the additional package. Copies handed to Board.


Randy Schmitt indicated the intention is to give us good visibility. A corporate type of identity sign. It is a routed out face as it should state on the colored rendering or the original drawings that we submitted. The only thing that will illuminate on the signs are the copy area themselves. It is a typical routed out corporate identity signage.


Randy Schmitt indicated in keeping with the signage in the area, it is a ground mount signs, 2 of them. The copy area itself if very small. The hotel square footage ID is 12.5, taking into account just the ID portion of it or the lettering portion of it. The restaurants are 6.5 square feet. The rest is background area.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 10 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was no written response received.





There was no audience participation.





Building Department had no comment.


Member Bauer indicated I have no problem with these signs, if you take the one down off of your building. I cannot see having the three signs.


Member Harris inquired of Alan Amolsch. What is the actual square footage difference between the old sign and the new sign?


Alan Amolsch indicated the original signs which were approved by the Board were 2 by 10 or 20 square feet and 5 feet tall. I don't believe that they are 5 feet tall, but that was the variance at the time. So you are looking at more than double in size and the


PAGE 30 JULY 11, 1995


height is 7'10" that they are proposing.


Randy Schmitt indicated if we take into account the topography of the property over there which I wouldn't want to be overlooked. It is very, very hilly along Haggerty Road there. It is a very large property and it is a multi-use property with the restaurants and the hotel. With that it is close to in keeping with the spirit and the intent of the ordinance; if you take a look at the landscaping and the trees that have grown up over the years one sign is only visible as you are travelling down Haggerty Road in a southbound.

The north sign is really going to really only be visible from southbound traffic. But, if you take into account the hills and the topography over Haggerty it is a difficult place to see the entrances. There is no doubt that the building can be seen from many different angles, but as far as an ingress and egress situation the size of these signs and the height of these signs though they may be taller than the ordinance is in keeping with the intent being a ground sign but would still give us the ability to get the copy above any landscaping.


Member Harris inquired what is the current height of the old sign?


Randy Schmitt indicated honestly, I think that Alan had stated that it was approved at 5; I don't believe it to be 5. I didn't put a tape on it, but I would guess it closer to 4 foot.


Member Harris indicated my sense is that you could do this new sign within that 5 feet, although it may be a little difference in square footage but that you don't need the 7 foot height to do it. What we are adding is not just the Hilton change, we are adding the restaurants and sports edition; with these 2 signs there are 3 signs on the Hilton. One on the wall and 2 on the ground. I do believe that you need the 2 at the entrances, but I am not convinced that they need to be over 7 feet high. I think that we could do this within the 5 foot height and just deal with this as a square footage as opposed to and possibly a verbiage, but certainly the square footage rather than a height variance.


Randy Schmitt indicated part of our problem would be conforming with the Hilton's requirements as far as the layout of the signs. I realize and I just wanted to state that; these are conforming to their identity package. They try to keep them below the 8 foot mark and I guess that is where their measurement comes in at 7'10" because many height requirements are 8 foot and lower.


Member Harris inquired are you representing that Hilton is indicating that the DaVinci Market and Sports Edition are required in their sign?


Randy Schmitt indicated their new identity, yes.



PAGE 31 JULY 11, 1995


Member Harris inquired that requires the restaurant and the Sports Edition to be?


Kirk Brown, director of sales and marketing at the Novi Hilton, indicated from my understanding is that not only is the hotel to be represented on a sign but also the outlets that we have inside. It is very difficult when you are attracting patrons to a restaurant and they hear the DaVinci's or hear the name Sports Edition and then they look around and they see Chili's and they see Big Boy and they see Koyoto's and they don't see any sign of the restaurant or the lounge that is inside. Consequently Hilton is requiring us to put those on the sign so that they can be user friendly.


Member Harris indicated I understand that, it is then Hilton's request. My concern is still that you could do this on a sign that is less than 5 feet tall and I would be prepared to deal with a sign of approximate size to what you are asking for but shorter. I do believe that you could still put the information that is showing here on a sign of approximately the same width but of height that was lessened. I think the issue of topography is one you are going to address in terms of the sign location. Particularly the north sign as to whether or not it is in the best location on that side of the driveway. That is one Board Members opinion on this one.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated that is actually two. I concur with Mr. Harris. I am sympathetic to the traffic and the configuration and congestion problems in that area. Very familiar with it. But, I also think that if you could come closer to living within the ordinance and my sense is that perhaps you ought to think about going back to the drawing board and coming back next months if you feel that perhaps you could meet your objectives with a different configuration on the sign.


Member Reinke indicted we always seem to come along with the idea that bigger is better. I am not really in agreement with that sign. I concur with Mr. Harris and Mr. Harrington both on that presentation.


Member Brennan indicated there are corporate identities and have been in this City for many years that had to make some changes to how they laid out their signage in order to meet this ordinance. That is something that has been historically very seriously enforced. If you can get closer to it; it would probably be a little easier.


Member Harris indicated just something that has no bearing on what you put on the sign, but troubled me somewhat; that the Hilton which insisted upon Novi being in it's sign when they came is now deleting it in the verbiage.



PAGE 32 JULY 11, 1995


Member Harris indicated with that, my proposal would run along the lines of would you be interested in tabling this for another month in order to look to do something within the parameters. As I said, I would find support for a replacement sign with the updated corporate logo with that information but I do believe that there is a precedent for a 5 feet height in the City and it think that we need to address it's location and it's topography or that the Hotel needs to address that, but within that framework I think that we could find some room to work on.


Randy Schmitt inquired as far as square footage goes, I am getting the jist on the 5 foot area, is there something close to what we have here considering the background area would be a routed out face type of sign? I know that we take into account the entire background when figuring square footage for the City.


Member Harris indicated we went from 20 square feet to a 48 square foot request on this sign and we are talking about a height reduction but it is not the square footage increase that bothered me nearly as much as the height change. In the old sign you really weren't at 5 feet; I would guess that you are at 3 1/2 or possibly 4 feet so there is was still at least that range in there. I think that you are not far out of the ball park if you take the top 2 feet off of this in terms of square footage that I would find acceptable. But, for me it was the height and the overall look of the sign and the location.


Randy Schmitt indicated we would then ask the Board to table this to the next available meeting.


Member Reinke inquired are we giving the petitioner a mis-direction in saying that he should look at the height and we are going to possibly increase the size of the sign? I don't know if the Board

is going to increase the size of the sign.


Member Harris indicated I think that all I am saying is that I would continue to entertain a larger square footage sign within the parameters of it being under 5 feet. That is only one Board Member's opinion.


Member Reinke indicated the thing is if they are not at the 5 foot height now, why couldn't they possibly go to the 5 foot height and live within the ordinance.


Member Harris indicated maybe they can.


Member Reinke indicated that is a possibility. I just don't want to mis-lead the petitioner.


Member Bauer indicated they are talking about 2 signs now, not just one.


PAGE 33 JULY 11, 1995


Member Harris indicated that is right, we are talking about 2 signs to replace the 2 signs that exist there.


Member Bauer indicated you are talking 40 square feet, against 90 some square feet.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Vice-Chairman Harrington,






Chairman Antosiak indicated your case has been tabled until the August Meeting.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicate I do have a request; if you could bring with you to the next meeting when this comes up again, whatever letter you got from Hilton telling you that your sign has to look like that. I would be interested in seeing that.





Planet Neon, representing Concentra Occupational Health Centers is requesting a variance to change the verbiage on the existing sign at 40000 Grand river Avenue. This sign was granted under Zoning Board of Appeals Case No. 94-039 and the Board has continuing jurisdiction over this sign.


John Palochak was present and duly sworn.


John Palochak indicated we would like to take the existing sign that has been approved by the Board and replace it with our new name, Concentra Occupational Health Centers; it is currently Suburban Medical Centers. It will be the same size, shape and design of the sign. Just the name will be changed.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 14 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was no written response received.




There was no audience participation.





Building Department had no comment.


Member Bauer indicated there is only the change in the verbiage.


PAGE 34 JULY 11, 1995


Member Reinke indicated I don't see a problem.


Member Harris indicated this was the sign that Suburban Medical worked very hard on trying to get into the existing and I see that this is just simply a change in the name of the business and I really have no problem with it.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Reinke,








Planet Neon, representing Library Sports Pub & Grill is requesting a variance to allow a second sign on the south elevation of the building 8' x 3'6" (28 sq. ft.), for property located at 42100 Grand River Avenue.


Alan Barnett was present and duly sworn.


Alan Barnett indicated in our case the variance we are requesting is two-fold. Number one is basic visibility and the other the prevention of a potential driving hazard. We have had 3 instances so far where people have been unable to just locate us as our only sign faces east. People heading eastbound on Grand River have driven right past it, not being able to see any sign; then hitting Haggerty Road and knowing they have gone to far and then coming back. The other the prevention of a potential driving hazard, as you are heading east on Grand River in order to see the sign while you are driving you need to look back, taking your eyes off of the road. It is far out of the peripheral vision of any driver.


Alan Barnett indicated the sign facing south would be a simple glance on the south to be able to locate our building and that is why we are requesting a second sign.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 12 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was no written response received.





There was no audience participation.






PAGE 35 JULY 11, 1995


Building Department had no comment.


Member Bauer inquired is this the same sized sign that was up for Shield's?


Alan Barnett indicated yes.


Alan Amolsch indicated no, it is larger. The original variance for Shield's was a 16.3 square foot sign, 2'4" x 7'. This sign is 28 square feet.


Member Harris inquired of Alan Amolsch. Did you say 16.3 square feet?


Alan Amolsch indicated that is correct.


Member Brennan indicated as I recall, this building sits on the corner of that development and my first thought is that you have a fairly large sign already. Does the possibility exist to put that on the corner of that building so it is visible from either direction?


Alan Amolsch indicated yes, they can put the sign and the ordinance was amended recently to allow that situation for a corner business in a shopping center; they can have their sign facing the major thoroughfare that it is on.


Alan Barnett indicated then we would only have one sign.


Alan Amolsch indicated that is correct. That was not true under the previous variance for Shield's.


Member Brennan inquired is this sign already up? I have noticed that there is some construction going on, so....


Alan Barnett indicated no.


Alan Amolsch indicated they have received their permit and erected their sign at the front of the building. This is for the second sign on Grand River.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated it is true, is it not, that when you come in an easterly direction on Grand River and in fact that when you approach your establishment you are at the top of a hill and then you are going sharply down a hill and that increases the difficulty of recognizing your establishment as well as the danger

of doing your look, see.


Alan Barnett indicated very much so. Even as you are heading westbound on Grand River where our existing sign is, it is currently covered by the beautiful trees coming out of the parking


PAGE 36 JULY 11, 1995


lot. So even that is difficult to see.


Member Harris indicated I could support a second sign, but probably no bigger than the last time. I think it would then be the petitioner's choice whether he put his large sign on the south elevation and the small sign over the entrance to his business or not in terms of the location of it. But, I do believe that there is in fact and was at the time that the Shield's variance and it continues to have some site line problems. We also know that we had significant discussion about the signage for this center, the business center sign that is there with it and I think that a continuation of approximately the same square footage as the Shield's variance previously would do.


Member Bauer indicated I agree.


Member Reinke indicated I would support that.


Member Brennan indicated for my own clarification, the Shield's restaurant had one sign...


Alan Amolsch indicated they had 2 signs and the additional sign was approved by the Board. Under the old ordinance they could not locate their sign on Grand River, they could only have it on the front of the business. Under today's ordinance they can, if they so choose to erect their one sign that they are permitted on the Grand River side.


Member Harris indicated I would ask the petitioner his reaction to be able to live within the 16.3 square foot for the second sign.


Alan Barnett indicated that would be fine.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Bauer,








Clif Seiber, representing "Deer Run" is requesting a variance to allow the placement of a 6' x 2' (12 square foot) entrance sign located at Deer Run and Garfield Roads. Entrance signs are permitted only for subdivisions. Deer Run is not a platted subdivision.



PAGE 37 JULY 11, 1995


Clif Seiber was present and duly sworn.


Clif Seiber indicated I am representing Robert Langan, the owner of this 54 acre parcel located on Garfield Road between Nine and Eight Mile Roads. This parcel was presented to the City Council a couple of years ago for development. It turns out that because of the zoning; the zoning for this parcel is RA which is one acre lots, and Novi's subdivision or wetlands ordinance prohibits any platted lot to contain wetlands within it. This parcel has quite a bit of wetlands on it and the upland areas meander throughout the parcel. We found that it was therefore impossible to plat this parcel under the City's wetlands ordinance requirements and under the zoning of the RA one acre minimum requirement. We therefore, chose as an alternative rather than to plat this parcel to subdivide it per the plat act which allows up to 4 splits of 10 acres or less or as many splits of 10 acre lots as you can provide for on your parcel, so it is dictated by the size of the parcel. Therefore, we divided 10 acre lots on this development. We took the 2 splits here, which are approximately 1 and 1/2 acre lots, the rest are all 10 acre lots (C, D, E and F) and F is actually a 20 acre lot which could be split into 2 parcels providing for a total of 7 lots on this development.


Clif Seiber indicated last fall the City Council accepted this roadway, it was built to City standards and dedicated to the City and now that road belongs to the City of Novi. Once that was accomplished we then wanted to market these 10 acre lots and found that the sign ordinance provided for signage for platted subdivisions only. We are, therefore, before you tonight asking for a variance to allow us to install a sign at the entrance for this 7 lot development. I will be glad to answer any questions that you may have.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 27 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was no written response that was received.





Cindy Gronigan, I represent the Garfield Road Homeowners Association. There are 22 homes on the road, no one answered your letter because they sent me instead.


Cindy Gronigan indicated I have 2 pictures that I would like to present to the Board. The sign is already in existence. It is already there. No one filed for this permit prior to the installation of the sign.


Cindy Gronigan indicated we as residents of the Garfield Road once again come before you as another committee in regards to this vacant land. This sign is not offensive in any manner; but, the


PAGE 38 JULY 11, 1995


residents feel that since this is not a subdivision why do we need to be subjected to a subdivision sign. There are simply lots that are going to be marketed and homes will be built on them. However, because this is a country setting and Garfield Road has fought to keep that country setting. We would like Garfield Road to remain that way without this sign at the end of this new road called Deer Run.


Cindy Gronigan indicated we would like this sign removed since it serves no purpose and since there is still problems with the vandals and the party goers, which I am sure is not your concern but the City of Novi and the police department will back me up on this; we feel that this sign only attracts people from coming into this vacant land and trashing this property.


Cindy Gronigan indicated the biggest thing is and I understand that Mr. Langan is here tonight; I had no problem with the sign nor did any of the other residents. But, once again, it was something that was done first and then the permit was gone after and that is the problem that we have. This is not a subdivision. He is trying to give the allusion of a subdivision and we don't want that allusion. We would like you to ask the owner of the property to remove that sign. Thank you.





Alan Amolsch indicated I was going to mention that the sign was already up, but now you already know that.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired when did the sign go up?


Clif Seiber indicated I believe that was in April. We received a violation from Mr. Amolsch and I believe that it was in April sometime.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired and when was that sign erected?


Clif Seiber indicated I believe in April; either March or April.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired did someone from the City indicate to you that it was OK to put the sign up? I mean, why did it go up without getting a permit?


Clif Seiber indicated we were under the impression that the sign company that was hired to install that had secured the sign permit. But, it turns out that they had not. Then of course, once the sign went up Mr. Amolsch issued us the violation.


Vice-Chairman Harrington inquired and what sign company gave you that impression that it was ok?



PAGE 39 JULY 11, 1995


Clif Seiber indicated Ventura Sign Company.


Member Brennan inquired of Cindy Gronigan, you said that you represented this Garfield Road Homeowners Association; are you the president of this association?


Cindy Gronigan indicated I am a resident, I live directly across the street from that sign. I do have names that you can verify this information with. Mr. and Mrs. William Galway, Mr. and Mrs. Ray Moross, Mr. Richard Booms, Mr. Mitz is also a resident of Garfield Road and they have all conferred together as we have done in the past to stand together and to represent the Garfield Road homeowners at these meetings.


Member Brennan inquired you haven't brought anything with you in a prepared statement, written that......


Cindy Gronigan indicated to be honest with you this is my first Planning Commission Meeting and no, I did not bring any signatures. However, I am prepared to do that; if you would like to table that I can present those signatures and statements by all of the homeowners. We did do our homework and we took those pictures. Mr. Mitts will verify that we did confer with all of the neighbors and the names that I gave you are the residents nearest to this sign. Mr. and Mrs. Galway's house is in that picture.


Member Brennan indicated I guess the only reason that I asked the question is because there is and this is the ZBA Hearing, but there is a procedure where Notices go out and the Chairman has already indicated that there were no responses at all and yet there is conflicting......


Cindy Gronigan indicated I apologize for that, but we were not familiar with that procedure that we should answer the back, we are more familiar with City Council Meetings where we come and voice. With the vacations that everybody was on, and the time lag and everything that is our mistake because we didn't know the proper procedure. I apologize for the that, but if you would like the signatures and you would give me 48 hours I could certainly produce them.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated the only question that I would have for you is in terms of the number of persons that you are speaking for that have told you "go ahead and talk to the ZBA and voice our objection" how may home sites do you represent?


Cindy Gronigan indicated 7 homes.


Member Harris inquired of Alan Amolsch. Are they allowed a construction sign?



PAGE 40 JULY 11, 1995


Alan Amolsch indicated this would not be allowed a construction identification sign because again it is not a subdivision. Each lot as it is developed can have a 16 square foot real estate sign on it. But, no construction identification sign would be allowed.


Member Harris indicated what I haven't heard is the hardship or the reason why we should do this; other than "we would like to have it".


Clif Seiber indicated the hardship, I believe, is the fact that we attempted to plat this property. But, because the City's wetlands ordinance prohibiting any portion of the lot being allowed to contain any wetlands we were unable to plat it. By State law we are allowed to plat this property; but, because of the City's wetland ordinance we were unable to do so. As a result instead of developing this 54 acres and securing many lots on it, we had to settle for 10 acre lots. They are large lots and they are going to be nice lots, but 7 lots on 54 acres is quite a hardship. As it is, without a sign it is going to be very difficult to identify this or to market it. At this point, the owner hasn't sold any of these parcels yet.


Member Harris indicated I understand what you are saying about the economics of it, but that is not normally a basis for hardship as we consider it. I still have yet to hear a basis for the reason why, as a hardship. Being able to not plat it is a zoning issue but at the same time we are talking this as we would about any other piece of property that might be located out in that area, which would have a similar kind of claim and there is not a uniqueness to this claim. What I am looking for, I guess, is something that might change that line of thinking.


Clif Seiber indicated I think being unable to plat it is directly the hardship in this case. If we could plat this identical layout; if we ended us with 10 acre lots and were allowed to plat it, then we wouldn't be here tonight. We would have a sign because it would be a platted subdivision.


Member Harris indicated my only point is that I don't believe that is unique to this piece of property and therefore makes the hardship unique to this request. That is my concern.


Member Bauer inquired this date on the map here, is 12-15-88. I don't know if the wetlands were in operation at that time or not.


Clif Seiber indicated yes, absolutely, it was.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Reinke,


PAGE 41 JULY 11, 1995




Discussion on motion:


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated I would, while voting for the motion, my position would be and I think that I am sensitive to the objections of the homeowners and they are not really objecting to the sign but the way it was done. They don't have a problem with the sign. I think a message should be sent that you don't put it in and ask questions later; you ask questions first and then if it is OK you put it in. I would be inclined to reconsideration this matter after a year or 18 months or so, if they have developed problems with people locating this attempted plat that is not a subdivision. If there could be demonstrated at that time some hardship and if the homeowners were to support a sign being put in at that time, I would reconsider this. But under the current circumstances, I am voting no specifically because of what was not done, they didn't follow procedure, they just put it in.






The Maples of Novi is requesting a variance to allow the placement of a construction identification sign 6' x 6' (36 sq. ft.) to be located at the corner of Fourteen Mile and Decker road


Michael Feldman was present and duly sworn.


Michael Feldman indicated I am representing the Maples of Novi, in requesting this construction identification sign at the corner of 14 Mile and Decker where our property and community is located. This sign is essential for a few reasons and there is a hardship that I would like talk about.


Michael Feldman indicated there is a lot of construction activity that is still in the Maples of Novi. It is a large community that will have 750 homes in total and we have approximately 80 units to sell at this time. There is a lot of construction activity still in the trucks and some residents have lived with this for a long time and our main objective and our main goal is to sell the remainder of the 80 approximate homes in this community. Sell them out and complete the construction so that we can have a completed subdivision.


Michael Feldman indicated it is important to the traffic that is generated by a sign like this. There is not any sign at the Maples of Novi that points to construction. There is other subdivisions in the direct area that have new construction and definitely can be recognized as new construction. Our main goal is to generate


PAGE 42 JULY 11, 1995


traffic so that we can sell the community complete and build it out and turn over to all the residents of the community a completed subdivision. That is our case at this point.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 3 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was no written response received.





Peter Hoadley gave a letter to Chairman Antosiak.


Peter Hoadley indicated I come here as a private citizen and I live at 31084 Arlington Circle in the Maples of Novi. I am also on the Board of Directors for the Maple Greens. You have before you a letter addressing our concerns. Frankly the developer was asked to do this at our request. We are experiencing severe hardship there. Some of us have been living there 5 and 6 years, we have been swallowing dirt. We have a lot of children in the area. We still have a lot of construction traffic. We want this project finished sooner rather than later. There is another 80 houses to go. There is a lot of conflicting or competing subdivisions within a half mile of this. We feel very strongly that a temporary sign for perhaps a year, will get them sold out, get them done and get them out of there. We feel that it is a real hardship and if any of you were living there you would understand what we are saying. We have narrow streets with an awful lot of construction traffic and a lot of children. Plus we have a very dirty situation. We can't enjoy the quality of life that we have paid for and we have been living there for several years until they are finished. We would appreciate a favorable consideration. I represent 200 homeowners.


Jan Halaby, 41620 Sleepy Hollow Drive. I am president of the association The Heights of Novi in the Maples of Novi. We are one street, our association is just one street. It is a perimeter road. The amount of trucks; cement trucks, all sorts of utility trucks that come through there is a hardship to us and it is also an endangerment to our children that live out there. They don't have a place to play, they play out in the street. The trucks are there and we would just like to have this project completed so that we could enjoy our homes. Thank you.





Building Department had no comment.


Member Bauer indicated he is asking for a construction sign and he is actually showing a sales sign.


Chairman Antosiak inquired of Alan Amolsch. Would you consider this a sales sign, rather than a construction sign?



PAGE 43 JULY 11, 1995


Alan Amolsch indicated our construction sign ordinance stipulates that somewhere on the sign it has the name of developer, the architects, the construction company or whoever is building the site. We also let them put information as to sales and that kind of information on the sign. The important thing is the sign structure itself. That is what you are looking at as far as sizes go. Real estate signs can only be 6 square feet. Construction signs can be up to 64 square feet. It is just a matter of what you put on the sign.


Member Bauer inquired how high can they go?


Alan Amolsch indicated up to 15 feet.


Member Harris indicated this is really a unique situation that we have the homeowners supporting the petitioner and the sign, where generally we are seeing the reverse. Generally we are seeing them saying take it down, it is an eyesore, it is on our property and we can't get through or whatever. I think it certainly changed my position on this. I was not at all prepared to support a continuation of the sign that has been there when there is 80 units left out of 750. But, based upon the homeowners associations I would certainly be prepared to support a variance request for an additional year in hopes that we can bring this to amiable conclusion for all parties.


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconded by Member Reinke,








Richard Ives, representing Trinity/Bosco Partnership is requesting a variance to allow the placement of a second entrance sign for the two (2) entrances of the Autumn Park Subdivision. One sign will be located at Nine Mile and Autumn Park Blvd. and the other sign will be located at Beck Road and Sunnybrook Lane.


Richard Ives was present and duly sworn.


Richard Ives indicated in the cover letter which I had forwarded to the Building Department, we actually asked for 2 things. The first REGULAR, ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

PAGE 44 JULY 11, 1995


is the placement of 2 signs at each entrance. We have provided you or the Building Department with a copy of the architect's drawing of the layout of the entrance as well as an as-built of the existing walls in the area. The second thing is that we looked for pulling a permit for these signs and the other thing that we found out is that the walls currently meet the setback requirements from the right of way but once we attach a sign to that wall then there is a conflict with the 10 foot setback from the right of way. So there is actually 2 things that we are asking for; the first is the ability to put up 2 signs at each entrance so that the public travelling on Beck Road both north and southbound as well as Nine Mile knows which subdivision they are looking at. The second is whether you allow us 1 or 2 signs, if you stick to the current ordinance which allows us the one sign, by attaching it to the wall we will be out of compliance with the 10 foot setback. I will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 22 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was one written response received voicing objection. Copy in file.





There was no audience participation.





Building Department had no comment.


Member Harris indicated just to clear up one of the comments in the objection; this is a permanent subdivision identification sign that we are talking about, is that correct?


Richard Ives indicated that is right. My only response to the letter is that and if you look at the copy of the plan; it is a permanent sign on the fieldstone wall. It is not a temporary sign and it will be permanently affixed.


Chairman Antosiak indicated this is just a clarifying question. These signs are going on the diagonal walls that frame each entrance to the subdivision?


Richard Ives indicated yes.


Chairman Antosiak inquired what is going on the boulevard median? It looks like another sign base.


Richard Ives indicated no; what we are going to actually have is several bollards for lights and we are going to go back to City Council (we were scheduled initially and JCK hadn't finished their review) if you are interested in a copy of that I have that here


PAGE 45 JULY 11, 1995


for you if you want it.


Chairman Antosiak indicated I just wanted to know what you were going to put in the medians.


Richard Ives indicated the only problem that JCK had with it was that one wing wall does affect a 12 inch storm, and we are either going to relocate the storm or post a bond in case there was ever any maintenance. As far as the site and the bollards they didn't have any problems with it. There will be no additional signs in the median, to answer your question.


Member Baty inquired are there any temporary signs right now?


Richard Ives indicated there is a temporary sales sign on the berm on Beck Road.


Member Baty inquired will that come down, if this would go?


Richard Ives indicated no. It comes down when the sub is sold out. They are allowed that one sales sign as I understand it, by the local ordinance.


Alan Amolsch indicated they are allowed a subdivision business sign for each entryway. They are permitted for one year or until 75% of the lots that are built on. They probably will be back to see you next year.


Member Harris indicated the issue before us is the permanent identification. They are allowed one per entrance and they are asking for 2 per entrance.


Alan Amolsch indicated that is correct. The setback variance is due to the location of the wall itself. It encroaches on the setback as required by ordinance.


Member Harris inquired the wall was OK, but if you put a sign on it is not?


Alan Amolsch indicated that is right; then the wall becomes a part of the sign which makes it a setback variance.


Member Brennan indicated I have some comments on this because I live in the area and there is an existing subdivision that is on the north side of Ten Mile that has already approached me with the same situation. They have angled walls and they built them that way and now to fix their problem of identification they want 2 signs. I think that this is a self created hardship, this is the way that they wanted to lay it out and design it. The sign ordinance was very clear long before they started sticking rocks in the ground. That is my feeling.


PAGE 46 JULY 11, 1995


Member Harris indicated interestingly I live in the same subdivision and across from the same ones and I have a differing view. That differing view is that in each of the single sign subdivisions that have come before us, we have had to grant a variance to put it in the boulevard. We are granting a variance one way or the other. My sense is that we either put them all in the boulevard or we put them on angled walls, but anyway that you do it; it comes back to the ordinance is problematic in the City in the sense that it comes back to us for a variance in either direction. I think a variance or a variety of some angled walls and some boulevard signs is where it comes down for me. I think that you are absolutely right that the ordinance is clear, however, that clear ordinance results in a variance with every subdivision that comes before us.


Richard Ives indicated Mr. Brennan is correct, that is a self made hardship and we take responsibility for not reading the ordinance correctly. Part of that was that we have probably done 20,000 lots in the last 10 years; we are actually a subsidiary of John Carlos the road builder. That was ignorance on my part, both as a City Manager prior to doing this in 2 different communities and having worked as a Planner before that; this is the first one that I have been confronted with this kind of situation. I will be frank, I didn't read the ordinance. I didn't think that it would be a problem, it hasn't been a problem in other communities. We did look at the issue of putting the sign in the median, we felt both for aesthetic and safety reasons that we didn't want to do that. So yes, I did create my problem; but I do think there is another issue above and beyond that and I don't know if it is appropriate for this body but you might want to take a look at your sign ordinance. What we think that we are going to do here really is aesthetically pleasing. When we are done we are going to spend close to $300,000.00. With all the landscaping that we are doing it will be about $100,000.00 on each entrance. What we want to do is to do something that looks nice and the ordinance is there it is our ignorance for not reading it.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




ROLL CALL: YEAS (4) NAYS (2) Harris, Harrington,

Reinke, Antosiak


Moved by Member Harris,


Seconding by Vice-Chairman Harrington,



PAGE 47 JULY 11, 1995







Richard Ives indicated there is one point of clarification, would this also resolve the issue by placing the sign on both walls that we have the 10 foot encroachment into the right of way because now it is considered a sign. Does this motion clarify that issue, also?


Chairman Antosiak indicated yes it does.


Alan Amolsch indicated yes, you are not in the right of way you are only violating the 10 foot setback requirement for the property line.





There was no one present for the case.


Chairman Antosiak indicated a letter should be sent saying that the variance request will be handled at the next Meeting. This case will be last on the agenda.





Member Harris indicated I think that we need to talk again about the August Meeting, as to whether or not we are going to have a Board. Since last month, I have found that I will not be available on August 8 nor would I be available on August 1 which was the original date. I think that there was some question if we would even have 4 individuals here on August 8.


Member Reinke indicated I will be here on the 8th.


Member Baty indicated I will be here on the 8th.


Vice-Chairman Harrington indicated I will be here on the 8th.


Member Brennan indicated I will be here on the 8th.


Chairman Antosiak indicated I will be here on the 8th.


Chairman Antosiak indicated I just wanted to mention a point that seeing another gun case on the agenda for this Meeting; I took the liberty of speaking with Dennis Watson, the City Attorney, to discuss the actual vote requirements that the ordinance requires under the ZBA. The ordinance does require that to approve a


PAGE 48 JULY 11, 1995


variance requires 4 votes, and it is regardless of how many Members are present for that vote. However, to deny a variance requires only a majority of those who are here; for example if there are 5 Members for a Meeting as it appears that it may be for August; 4 votes will be required to grant a variance but 3 votes would only be required to deny a variance. This is a quirk of the ordinance and we see several ordinances that have several quirks. I do also understand from Mr. Watson, that the Home Occupation Ordinance is in implementation or the review committee.


Don Saven indicated it isn't there yet, but it potentially going to be there.


Chairman Antosiak indicated he told me that it was going there. So, I will take him at his word.


Member Harris inquired could we in fact, as a Board, at least see the draft of the revision to that?


Don Saven indicated sure.


Member Harris indicated I think this is one that we have special interest in.


Don Saven indicated it depends how quick it is going to get to the Ordinance Review Board. Sometimes it comes up just before the Board and we are discussing it at that time, that is really not a good situation is a couple of days ahead of time. We deal with a month issue here, but I am sure that we could get some information to you.


Member Harris indicated you might want to consider inviting the ZBA Chair to that Ordinance Review Meeting.


Member Harris indicated I do think that there certainly is a very seated vested interest that this Board has in that among other ordinances, signs being another one.


Chairman Antosiak indicated at least we could help them design something that is clear. Not necessarily going to the content, but at least the clarity and the ease of enforcement.


Member Harris indicated beyond that, I would be very interested in when they do finally come up with whatever it is what they intend it to meet. At this point, the intent of that ordinance is murky.

Don Saven indicated it leaves a lot of speculation.


Member Brennan indicated enforcement is impossible.


Chairman Antosiak indicated in a sense it is clear. It is easy to


PAGE 49 JULY 11, 1995


enforce, but I would not want to enforce it.


Don Saven indicated from a Home Occupation standpoint of view, zoning changes evolve as the time goes. Take a look at right now the hottest thing and it has been one of the hottest things for the last years and that is Day Care and the impact it has on a residential community. Especially for the seniors in this community.


Member Harris indicated there has also been a de-regulation on the part of the State in terms of the size of the license, so that you have got a different set of circumstances that were heretofore covered under the ordinance.


Don Saven indicated and there are other issues that you have to be careful of, too. All I can say is that it does need a lot of work.


Don Saven indicated I have 2 issues under "other matters". Number one, you all received a packet of information from me at the request of City Council and the City Manager that I produce something for you indicating policy and procedures and some general information that needs to be done, going back to the original documentation as far as our Zoning Board of Appeals. I thought that you might want to take a look at that. One of the issues also came up was conferences and training; we do encourage this and it is in the packet of information. When things come up we are certainly going to try and to notify you. If you hear of something please help us along to try to get this stuff to you at least a month in advance. Secondly, the issue was brought up today on the wall relative to where this was placed. We have had nothing but problems referencing subdivisions and what was taking place. These subdivision walls are getting so elaborate, we are not just a pilaster with a notification of this is what it is. What is happening that is that it is coming in with the landscape plans, as part of the landscape feature. This is what brought up this condition with Autumn Park; because this was part of the landscape feature and the wall was indicated on this particular issue. The approval was granted for the landscape feature, but it was not through the Department for the wall thus the Notice of Violation was sent out for the wall and he had to take care of certain issues. I can't issue a permit until everything is all clarified. Fortunately this issue is turned around and we get this ahead of time through our department and a with new policy and procedures that Chris will notify us immediately when a wall is shown on a plan for a landscaping feature which they in turn now know that they have to take out a permit. One, if it involves a sign and two that yes it is a structure. Hopefully, things will change down the road.


Member Brennan indicated just for the sake of some commonality on this Board, if we are looking at future signage in subdivisions


PAGE 50 JULY 11, 1995


laid out in a similar manner I guess that we are going to grant variances. Is that the jist????


Member Harris indicated I think that we gave granted a variance to every subdivision that has come forward. Either in the boulevard or ......


Don Saven indicated if you take a look at the boulevard; the boulevard itself creates more of a problem and from a City liability and a maintenance point of view,............when somebody goes to task for trying to put something forth that is beautiful for a community and that is what these people have done and there is no 2 ways about it; I thought it was fantastic. The thing that got me was what happened if the Board said no. That was one of the first things that I thought of, here is this entrance way sign, elaborate as all get out, and he can put up one and not the other. But he can't even put up the one without a setback requirement. So if he got the setback requirement for the one, he is sitting there with the other one and he can't do it. What the resulting factor was; dis-lodge it or do not attach this thing to the wall itself and put up another sign right in front. If we could try to work something in here, maybe it is something that we should be taking a look at as a change in the ordinance if this is going to be a continuous problem. I don't know, I am not one to sit and judge but I am just saying that if you want uniformity you are looking at something good.


Member Baty indicated I think that you will always find that if there are 2 walls, on either side of an entrance, and you put a sign on one side that people will tend to go for the symmetry and want a sign on the other side. Even if you can see the one sign in both directions, they will always ask for another sign. People like symmetry.


Don Saven indicated I think it is like other things that you brought up as why is this Board being put in these positions, to answer questions relative to certain things that are forced on the Board. These are things that should be taken a look at. If there is a change in these, it would be in the ordinance.


Member Harris indicated my only comment to all of that would be that we have requested that they look at these things. I think that there needs to be some feed back from City Council, to acknowledge that they are or aren't in some direction. We used to meet at least once a year with the Council to exchange ideas of concern. That has not happened in the last couple of years. Maybe that is or isn't the thing to do. My concern would be that when we speak before and I have spoke before the Council on the issue of the Home Occupation, they all nodded affirmatively that we should do something about this and now you are saying that it is moving. But, there really needs to be a more direct line of communication


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back to us from the City Administration.


Don Saven indicated then I think, personally myself, that there should be as far as a direction from the Board with a letter sent to the appropriate departments to take a look at these things and follow up with a letter and that follow up going through those procedures that need to be followed. For example, you want something to be brought up at Ordinance Review Committee it first has to go to City Council saying should we bring this up or not; then it is referred back to the Ordinance Review Committee. Then it is discussed at the Ordinance Review Committee and then brought back to City Council based upon the recommendations that developed.


Member Harris inquired in an issue like we faced this evening; you can build a wall but if you put a sign on it the concept changes. It is very difficult for us to sit here and deal with the merits of whether we should or shouldn't be doing these things. That goes to a technical expertise or a technical level, that there needs to be clarity in it so that we diminish those kinds of things.


Alan Amolsch indicated things have changed over the years. When that sign was originally in the sign ordinance in 1974 that is the way signs were. Somebody put a sign up and plunked it on the subdivision. Now you have these elaborate walls, you have landscaping which when they put all of the landscape in it defeats all of the whole purpose of having an entrance sign because you can't see it when they do put it in. The nature of the whole thing has changed over the years. It is not just a simple sign anymore, it has become a wall, landscaping, fencing and everything else. You can't put them in an island....


Member Baty inquired do we have a formal way of communicating with Council as to our requests?


Chairman Antosiak indicated not really. Mr. Harris, when he was Chairperson, went to a Council Meeting and spoke.


Member Harris indicated our Minutes go to the Council people. You know that we have said in the past that we met with them; approximately once a year at least when the Council met with all of the Boards and Commissions. My sense is that we are appointed to serve at their pleasure and if it is their pleasure not to respond to us, they can do that. I wish it was their pleasure to respond to us, however.


Member Baty indicated maybe we need to do more of a formal petition.


Member Bauer indicated maybe a letter to them.


Member Harris indicated realistically they are building these walls REGULAR, ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

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too, Alan, in all of these beautiful places because the City is giving them beautification awards. You get a beautification award, you put it in your advertisement, "this subdivision won a City of Novi Beautification Award" so there is a cycle to this as opposed to putting the little 4 by 6 wooden sign out there in the past.





Meeting was adjourned at 10:15 p.m.



Recording Secretary