The Meeting was called to order at 7:30 p.m, with Chairman Antosiak presiding.




Present: Members Brennan, Antosiak, Meyer, Reinke, Bauer, Harrington

Sanghvi (alternate)


Absent: None


Also Present: Donald M. Saven - Building Official

Alan Amolsch - Ordinance Enforcement Officer

Nancy McKernan - Recording Secretary


(Due to technical difficulties with the sound system many parts of the tape of the Meeting are not audible.)


Chairman Antosiak indicated we have a Full Board present this evening. The Novi Zoning Board of Appeals is a Hearing Board empowered by the Novi City Charter to hear appeals seeking variances from the application of the Novi Zoning Ordinances. It takes a vote of at least four (4) Members to grant a variance and with a Full Board present any decision made tonight will be final.



Approval of Agenda


Chairman Antosiak indicated there is a change to our Agenda this evening. Case No. 98-009 filed by A & M Custom Homes has asked to withdraw their case for consideration. Are there any other changes? Hearing none, by voice vote all in favor of the amended Agenda; please say aye. All ayes. Agenda Approved as amended.


Approval of Minutes


Chairman Antosiak indicated we have the minutes of the March 7, 1998 Meeting for approval. Are there any changes proposed to those minutes? Hearing none, by voice vote all in favor of approving the minutes as written; please say aye. All ayes. Minutes approved.


Public Remarks


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 each case is heard. However, if anyone in the audience would like to address the Board on any matter not related to a specific case before us, this is the time to do so. Is there anyone in the audience that would like to come forward?

Tamara Murphy, 1107 South Lake Dr. I was before the Board at the ZBA Meeting in January. I received a variance to put an addition on my house. I have had problems with the architect and getting the plans drawn up. I am about 2 weeks away from it and my variance expired yesterday. I am asking the Board for an extension of the variance.


Chairman Antosiak: How long?


Tamara Murphy: About one month. The architect says that in about 2 weeks he should have the plans and Mr. Saven says it will take about 2 weeks for the Building Department to approve the plans for the permit.


Don Saven: I believe that is a reasonable time frame. I was notified of this about 2 days ago and I suggested the applicant come to the meeting tonight.


Member Brennan: We want to be sure to get you what you need, is a 1 month extension safe? Can you use a little more to be safe?


Tamara Murphy: I would feel comfortable with 2 months. The architect has assured me that in 2 weeks he will have the plans to me; but I have been assured before. So I would feel more comfortable with 2 months.


Member Brennan: Why don’t we save you a trip and our time and suggest maybe a couple of months extension.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Harrington,




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried


Case No. 98-015 filed by Pucci Building Co., representing James Kukuzke


Continuation of case filed by Pucci Building Co., representing James Kukuzke, requesting a 6' setback variance to allow a pool to remain 4' from a proposed construction at 41416 Glyme.


Frank Pucci was present.


Frank Pucci: Mr. Kukuzke is on vacation and cannot be present tonight. I think that we tabled this pending a letter from the attorney as to the court liability of the City of Novi and the Zoning Board. Did you receive that letter?


Chairman Antosiak: There is a copy in the record.


Frank Pucci: I received the letter and basically it states that the City is immune and the Zoning Board is immune.


Chairman Antosiak: I think that was the reason that we did table the request. Are there any other questions of the petitioner?


(Tape inaudible.)


Chairman Antosiak: Mr. Brennan has raised a concern because he has a personal friend who experienced an injury in a similar situation; jumping off a roof.


Member Brennan: I asked for the City Attorney’s interpretation and I guess it is not exactly what I wanted, but I guess that is what he is required to give us. My position really hasn’t changed. I have some personal issue with it and I won’t support it. You might have other support from the Board, but I am not going to change my mind just because the City Attorney says that I can’t be sued.


Member Harrington inquired of Mr. Brennan: Was your concern the liability aspect as it may reflect on the City or was it other issues?


Member Brennan: My concern was that I didn’t want to participate in approving a variance that I knew from personal experience might cause personal accident and whether we are protected or not protected by law, my gut tells me that this just isn’t a smart thing to do. That is exactly my position.


Frank Pucci: Let me interject here, if it looks like it is going to be a negative situation the homeowner would be able to approach the Board next month. He really wanted to be here, but had no way to get out of his commitment. To me the issue is one of personal property and what is happening inside the person’s property really isn’t a may have a point there, some jerk may jump off of the roof but we can’t...or how far are we going to carry ordinances to protect people in their own homes.


Member Brennan: Except that you are asking for a variance to the ordinance.


Frank Pucci: I know that, but this is his own personal property and again I would rather have him address you on those issues.


Member Brennan: Are you asking for another extension?


Frank Pucci: I would like to get it over with, this has been dragging on since December.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Roll Call: Yeas (3) Nays (3) Meyer, Harrington, Antosiak


Frank Pucci: Do we table this until next month?


Member Brennan: We have a tie vote.


Chairman Antosiak: Is there any discussion from the Board? I am presuming that a motion to approve the variance would be of the same result.


Member Harrington: There is some sense that the homeowner would like to meet with the Board personally and had difficulty coming today. I wasn’t here last month, I would like to see the homeowner, I read the minutes but that is not the same thing. (Tape inaudible) ......I would not object to tabling the case.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: The best thing and the most mutual for the Board and the petitioner is that we table this until next month.


Member Meyer: I had mentioned at the previous meeting that the gentleman has lived here since 1976 and I really believe that we should do everything that we can to work with them and their effort to stay in the City.


Member Harrington: One of the areas that I will ask the homeowner about and sometimes it would be helpful if they know of this earlier; I will be inquiring of the homeowner what the existing liability of the insurance policy is and possibly about the affordability of an umbrella policy. (Tape inaudible)


Frank Pucci: That wouldn’t really address your concerns would it? A rider on the policy? It wouldn’t be transferrable from homeowner to homeowner.


Member Harrington: Those are the questions I am going to ask and there may not be an answer.


Chairman Antosiak: Then I would move that this matter be tabled to the May meeting, all in favor please say aye. All ayes. Case is tabled to the May meeting.



Case No. 98-018 filed by A.M. Kowal


A.M. Kowal is requesting an interpretation of a variance of the ordinance to allow the existing temporary building to remain on site for the storage of a helicopter, for property located at 1185 South Lake Drive.


Andy Kowal was present and duly sworn.


Andy Kowal: Actually I would like to correct this. I am asking for a variance and an interpretation of the variance. I applied for a permit to temporarily store my helicopter or a boat on my property and I also had a carport in which to store it underneath. The City said that I needed a permit for that. So I applied for a permit for that. They denied both items on the basis that they said a recreational vehicle is allowed to be stored on my property within the place that I want to store it except that they didn’t consider this a recreational vehicle. That is the interpretation of the variance that I would like. The second thing was the carport storage which consisted of 8 pipes supporting a tarp like cover. That was denied on the basis that it is a structure. As a civil engineer, I don’t consider this a structure. It is not attached to the ground, but your definition of a structure in the zoning ordinance does comply with that so I would like a variance on that. The way a structure is defined in your zoning ordinance it says it is anything that is set on or attached to the ground, and under that definition a tree would be a structure and a car would be a structure or anything that you would put any place would be a structure. Under that definition I need a variance.


Andy Kowal: What I presented for you in preparation for this is .......(tape inaudible). If you go back to the first page there is a definition of a recreational vehicle. According to Black’s Law dictionary it defines a vehicle as any moving support or container fitted or used for the conveyance of bulky objects or it is a means of conveyance or it is that which is used as a means of conveyance, transmission or communication. Webster’s dictionary defines recreation as refreshment of strength or spirit after work, a means of refreshment or diversion. Both of those definitely apply to the use of a helicopter.


Chairman Antosiak: May I interject here? We all have copies of the materials that you submitted. So I would encourage you that if you have anything to add to those materials or if there is anything specifically that you would like to point out to us, to do so, but I don’t think that it is necessary that you read everything that you have submitted to us.


Andy Kowal: Very good. Thank you.


Member Meyer: I think it would be prudent if you would share with us why you see this as a hardship as you have outlined. That is the heart of this discussion. You have to indicate to us why we should grant the variance.


Andy Kowal: It is a hardship because first of all there is a registered heliport on my property, and a permit that was granted by the Federal Aviation Commission when I moved into that property in 1981. This is my homestead and as my homestead and I have been there for a long time, I think that I have a right or I think that I should be able to store my valuable property on my property. It is definitely a hardship if I have to put this out some place in the public while I am trying to either have the helicopter renovated or so. That is the essence of the hardship.


Member Meyer: Where is the helicopter now?


Andy Kowal: It is out at Wixom Airport. Wixom Airport, we sold about in September of last year and that is going to be turned into industrial land. Therefore all of the hangars out there have to be torn down. When they are knocked down, I want to store it at my home.


Member Meyer: Is this something that we have looked at before? Heliports?


Chairman Antosiak: Not to my recollection.


Andy Kowal: If you will allow me to explain, when I moved into my house in 1981 your zoning ordinance allowed a heliport on the land and I specifically bought that site where I could land. I live on Walled Lake and I land across the street from my home on the lake frontage.


Member Meyer: One more question, I might have overheard or mis-heard, were there objection letters?


Chairman Antosiak: We haven’t gotten to that yet.


Andy Kowal: I don’t think that there is anyone who objects. Basically as far as my helicopter goes I took them all for a ride and bribed them. They shouldn’t object. As far as the structure goes and storing it on the property no one objected except one person who lives in the senior citizen home and he showed up at the original hearing which was held to see if they would allow me the storage of the helicopter on my property and in the storage under the carport. They did not and that is why I am here.


Andy Kowal: Quickly, I just want to go through here and to convince you that there are 8 different copies of Michigan Helicopter Association Monthly Newsletters. In each one of them, they have articles about enjoying your helicopter and it is, I think, from all of them it is all for recreational use. The first one shows a picture of a recreational vehicle pulling a helicopter and that is the way that guy travels and enjoys life. The next one is about visiting a restaurant. The next one is about visiting with your helicopter at Mackinac Island. I just wanted to leave the impression with you that the recreational vehicle is strictly for recreational use. I myself stated that the only reason I use it now is to travel back and forth up north. It saves a lot of time and a lot of bother with traffic.


Andy Kowal: The next thing in the material that I gave you is a picture of the structure; the zoning ordinance defines this as a structure. I state on there that there is absolutely no screws, bolts or any attachments of any kind to the ground. This simply stands on its own and has a tarp on the top of it. This is one that is shown. I purchased it from Powell and Powell Supply in North Carolina and not included with the package is an engineering bulletin which I called and requested from them which shows that it is sound and stable without being attached to the ground or without any of the bolts or screws that usually are a part of a structure.


Andy Kowal: Also attached is the City of Novi minutes of the meeting that we had in which the temporary use and the structure were denied.


Member Meyer: According to this you haven’t had the helicopter in the air since 1994?


Andy Kowal: Yes right, that is when I contracted cancer. When I was well and ready to fly again there was only 50 hours left on it before it has to be sent back to California for renovation and it wasn’t cost economical to do that. That renovation costs somewhere between $65,000.00 and $80,000.00; and I just don’t have cash right now.


Andy Kowal: The reason that this is attached is because Mr. Morrone, who "chaired" the meeting; definitely said that it would be allowed if it is considered a recreational vehicle. The ordinance does state that. It states this on page 3294.


Chairman Antosiak: Sir, we have all of that.


Andy Kowal: What was not attached and I will go through quickly, and I have about 7 or 8 copies if you would like to see them of other handouts. (copies given to the Board)


Andy Kowal: The front page is simply a document that shows that there is a registered heliport on my property. The other pictures are shown in there only for the reason that it shows that there is a great need to store property within the 10 feet property line of the lakes area of the City of Novi. It consists of about 30 pictures which I took and each one of them shows either one of two things. It shows a recreational vehicle parked within the 10 foot side yard of their property or it shows a shed or a storage thing within the 10 foot area. These are both exactly what is being denied from me. I took the pictures to show that there is a great need to allow people to store their recreational vehicles within the side yard setback.


Chairman Antosiak: Before we go to the Public Comments I will briefly summarize the variance request that is before us. The first is an interpretation as to whether the canopy or the structure is a structure and subject to regulation under the ordinance. The second interpretation to determine if the helicopter is a recreational vehicle. The third is to consider the storage of the helicopter as an accessory use. The fourth is to allow the continued use for longer than 6 months. The fifth is to allow the existing structure, if in fact it is a structure under the ordinance, to remain 2 feet from the property line.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 63 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was one written response received, voicing objection. Copy in file.




George Keller, I am the person that Mr. Kowal referred to at the last session that was opposed to this. I am a resident of South Pointe Condos, next door to this property. I am appearing today on behalf of the Board of Directors of South Pointe Condos which represents 44 owners. I am the administrative assistant. A couple of things that bother us about Mr. Kowal; he has been the kind of neighbor who has a lot of debris on our property. We have been coming to the City since September of 1996 complaining about it.


George Keller: Here is a prepared statement I would like to read to you. The Board of Directors of the South Point Condo Association, located at 1127 South Lake Drive, representing 44 co-owners that oppose granting a variance to any existing structure to be located closer than 6 feet to our property line as Section 2503.8 dictates. We would like to be good neighbors and would go along with Mr. Kowal’s request for a temporary use permit to house the helicopter but have it 6 feet from our property line; if we could be assured that he would honor the 6 month permit. His letter to the City dated 1-293-97 had him building decorative walls from concrete that was actually on our property. Well, he never built a decorative wall and the debris is still there. So we couldn’t go along for a 2 foot deal because debris is all over our property right now. We recently complained with a letter from 3-26-98, that the debris has not been removed from our property and it is an eye sore to anybody entering our complex. We could go along with the request with the above stipulations on the 6 foot requirement. If you find a helicopter is a recreational vehicle and he clears the debris that is on our property that we object to; before he begins any additonal structure; we would like the City to police that factor and we would like the City to take a look at what is there right now. We think that after a couple of years that some action could be taken on the debris. That is our petition.




Don Saven: It appears that you have covered all of the concerns that we had and that Mr. Morrone has outlined. Those are the conditions that we must look at.


Andy Kowal: Can I reply to Mr. Keller? Last May or last spring or at the end of 1996 I completed a bunch of brick pavers and I replaced most of my driveway with brick pavers and removing the concrete when I was not home the person with the excavating machine pushed the concrete where I told him to except he pushed it back to far and it was on their property. I removed all of the concrete off that property and I don’t know of any debris on his property today except for a bunch of wood that I told them was cut down by Detroit Edison and was stored on their property because there is a tree growing there. Edison comes by there and cuts down the trees every once and awhile that interferes with their wires. They also just came by last month and there is more debris in the form of chopped wood on that property that is not mine. There is some branches that were from my yard that I will take off of there. All of the broken concrete has either been buried or it is on my property and it is on the area that forms a walkway or driveway instead of brick pavers it is broken concrete pavers and it is very attractive. It is where the helicopter is going to be stored. All I can say about everything else is that I have been there since 1981 and my house has always been considered one of the most attractive in the neighborhood. I work on the outside grounds myself, it is my hobby and they have always been very well kept. I would be pleased to meet with any kind of enforcement officers and to go over the problem and if I am violating anything or I have any debris on the property I will take it off.


Andy Kowal: Here is a picture of the helicopter.


Chairman Antosiak: There is a copy of it in the packet.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan: There are 2 issues. One is the helicopter a recreational vehicle? Two is the device a structure?


Member Brennan: I don’t consider a helicopter a recreational vehicle. The device is used to protect, so it is a structure.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I agree with Mr. Brennan, whether you call it temporary or not it is a structure. It is setting there, it is taking space, whether it is tied down to the ground or not. If you put a shed in there, that may not be tied down to the ground but it is a structure that is taking space. That is the only way that I could consider this. Again, to classify a helicopter as a recreational vehicle it is not a common use and I don’t see where it fits that classification.


Member Harrington: Do I understand that the last time that you actually used this transportation device for recreational purposes was in 1994?


Andy Kowal: Yes.


Member Harrington: And due to your own personal medical situation you probably will never be able to fly that vehicle again?


Andy Kowal: That is not true.


Member Harrington: You don’t have a licence right now.


Andy Kowal: I do have a license.


Member Harrington: Are you cleared to fly?


Andy Kowal: Yes.


Member Harrington: Were you cleared to fly when you had the meeting with the City?


Andy Kowal: Yes.


Member Harrington: Do I understand that the problem is created because you did have affordable storage at the Wixom Airport but that is no longer available?


Andy Kowal: That is right. We sold that property and it is no longer there.


Member Harrington: Have you looked into storing this somewhere else?


Andy Kowal: No.


Member Harrington: Do you have a garage on your property?


Andy Kowal: Yes.


Member Harrington: Is the helicopter smaller than a boat?


Andy Kowal: It is the same size as a car.


Member Harrington: Then there wouldn’t be any problem storing this in your garage?


Andy Kowal: No, except that the rotor would have to be taken off.


Member Harrington: But you have taken it off before and that hasn’t been a problem?


Andy Kowal: No, that is no problem. It was discussed at the meeting and they said that it could only be stored in the garage if it was considered a recreational vehicle. I have gone through a great deal of effort and I don’t know what else to do, except to bring the whole Michigan Helicopter Association here and tell you what the Robinson R-22 Helicopters are only used for personal travel and for recreation. That is what they are made for.


(Tape inaudible.)


Andy Kowal: That was temporary at that time and my license was renewed but it wasn’t given back to me at that time because I had a high sugar count. Since that time I had my doctor and have taken additional tests and sent them into the FAA and I am waiting for the release of my medical certificate.

I have a license but my medical certificate is being temporarily held until the FAA looks through the new sugar test.


Member Harrington: I guess that what I was asking and I didn’t understand the technical stuff, but you can’t fly now; can you?


Andy Kowal: No, but I have both licenses and tomorrow that could change.


Member Harrington: Or maybe never.


Andy Kowal: No, it isn’t never because my blood sugar was only temporarily high and it is not temporarily high any more. My doctor sent in proof to the FAA that it is not too high to fly.


Member Harrington: OK, back to where I was going. Will the helicopter fit inside of the garage?


Andy Kowal: Yes.


Member Harrington inquired of Don Saven: Is there anything precluding the storage of this helicopter inside of the enclosed space?


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Harrington: So if it is a recreational vehicle he can store it inside of his garage; but if it is not a recreational vehicle he cannot.


Member Meyer: The gentleman has done a service of providing us with definitions of what a recreational vehicle is.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I really don’t think that you can classify a helicopter as a recreational vehicle, because a recreational vehicle is something that a common person could utilize and use without special requirements. I don’t think that a helicopter would fall into that classification.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Harrington: Is a helicopter considered an airplane?


Andy Kowal: No, it is an aircraft or rotor craft.


Member Meyer: There is no other place that you can park this vehicle than at your home?


Andy Kowal: No, not right now. The other thing that I would like to say is that after 6 months I would like to store my boat in that same location there. I have given you copies of 30 other boats or recreational vehicles that are stored on property right now and everyone of them is within the side yard setback.


Member Harrington: And not one of them has a canopy structure from North Carolina such as you have ordered and constructed over it. None of the pictures have that.


Andy Kowal: That is true, except that some of them have built up sheds there in which they are sticking out of them. They build sheds there.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I think that is an issue that has to be addressed on an individual case basis as to whether they meet the ordinance or they do not meet the ordinance and that is the function of the Building Department and really has no justification on your case.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan: What is before us is 5 issues. I think that we should discuss them one at a time.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Harrington,




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Vice-Chairman Reinke,




Roll Call: Yeas (4) Nays (2) Meyer, Antosiak Motion Carried


Member Brennan: Then item number 3 is not relative and is a moot point. Correct?


(Tape inaudible.)


Chairman Antosiak inquired of Don Saven: If as we have determined the helicopter is not in fact a recreational vehicle per the ordinance, can it be an accessory use?


(Tape inaudible.)


Chairman Antosiak: I believe this would still be an issue.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Discussion on motion.


Chairman Antosiak inquired of Don Saven: If in fact it is interpreted that this is not an accessory use would that preclude the storage of this helicopter on the property?


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Harrington: It would preclude the storage of the aircraft in the garage also, is that right?


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Harrington: If we have determined that it is not an accessory use which would preclude the storage on the property, then can we grant a variance to our own determination to allow him to store it in the garage. I think that he ought to be able to store it in the garage. I think that we have the discretion to allow him to store it in the garage.


Chairman Antosiak: We would need to find it an accessory use.


Member Harrington: But that would let him store it any where.

Member Meyer: He hasn’t decided whether it will be an aircraft or a boat.


Member Sanghvi: I know we are looking at the variance; but we do live in a free country. Every man’s home is his castle. Apart from the accessory things about the debris and all of that with the neighbor, which should be removed and taken out of the realm. But, if you go back and look at the history of the steam engine and the first time that it rolled down the road - people objected to that. Every time the definition of a recreational vehicle is going to change over the period of time, we are the threshold of the 21st century here and even though a helicopter may not be as common as we would all like to see it; it is still exists for medical, recreational and others. This gentleman has a heliport license and we should find a way to help him to store this until the time that he can fly or he can sell it. I think that it beholds on us to find a way to help him rather than to hinder him with this difficulty.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: As Mr. Harrington has said, if the petitioner came back and said that he wanted to store it in the existing garage I wouldn’t have a problem with it. But, to say that you are allowing an accessory use and that you can store it anyplace on the property, I disagree with.


Member Meyer: Is there a motion on the table?


Chairman Antosiak: There is a pending motion as to whether or not the storage of the helicopter is an accessory use.


Roll Call: Yeas (5) Nays (1) Meyer Motion Carried


Member Brennan: In reference to item number 4, I now believe this to be a moot point.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan: Now that we have determined that this is a structure........what about the boat......the structure is 2 feet from the property line, it is similar to other applicants.......there is storage problems there.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Discussion on motion:


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Harrington: Why do you need this 2' from the property line?


Andy Kowal: Because I would have to cut down trees on my property to move it elsewhere.


Chairman Antosiak: The picture shows that it is right up against the tree at the side.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Meyer: I think that we should respect what the neighbors have indicated, they feel that this particular ordinance number section 2503.8 does indicate that it should be at least 6 feet and I think that we should hold to that.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I am at a loss. The gentleman wants a structure to store a helicopter, you say that you have a boat that you want to store there also or that you might have a boat?


Andy Kowal: I have a boat. My boat is up north and I would like to bring it down here and store it here. Especially during the summer and fall.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I misunderstood you, thank you for the correction.


Member Harrington: I am looking at this picture here and do I understand that the 2 feet is between the fence and the back poles? Is there a side fence?


Andy Kowal: There is no fence there.


(Tape inaudible.)


Roll Call: Yeas (4) Nays (2) Meyer, Reinke Motion Carried


Chairman Antosiak inquired of Don Saven: Is this temporary use permit as to the structure or as to the storage?


(Tape inaudible.)


Vice-Chairman Reinke: Now, we have passed a variance to allow an accessory structure to be located closer to the property line. This building must meet City Code, is that correct?


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan: Should we move on the 6 months to allow for the storage of a boat?


Andy Kowal: The use of that structure would be on a permanent basis at the end of 6 months for my boat.


(Tape inaudible.)


Chairman Antosiak: He wants to go beyond the 6 months. Is that correct, Mr. Saven, that under the ordinance Mr. Kowal would have 6 months?


(Tape inaudible.)


Chairman Antosiak: You are seeking to use this..........


Andy Kowal: A temporary permit now, and I am advising you that at the end of 6 months I will move to have it permanent.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: In section 3004.3 a temporary use permit, I think should be left at the City’s discretion for a use of 6 months and then we would review it at that time. So no action would be required of the Board.


(Tape inaudible.)


Don Saven: I have a concern about the use variance.....would prefer that the Board initiate something....there is a concern from the Building Department. (tape inaudible)


Chairman Antosiak: Then I would propose that item 4 be tabled until the next meeting following the expiration of 6 months. If Mr. Kowal desires the continued use of that structure for storage of a recreational vehicle he could come back and present his case at that time. If he decides that he doesn’t want to continue the use would expire and he would not have to return.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I would like to raise a point. He can apply and get a temporary use permit for 6 months. Why do we even need to hold it open? If he decides that he wants to do something at that point in time to make it permanent to make it comply with the ordinance then we could deal with the whole issue at that time. I really see no reason to hold this open.


Chairman Antosiak: I would only be holding this one item open, which is the extension of the 6 months.


Member Harrington inquired of Don Saven: Is there a temporary use permit, right now that has been issued?

Don Saven: No.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Sanghvi: Would there be a problem issuing a temporary use permit?


Don Saven: Based on the fact that he received the setback requirements, probably not. But once again we will be going through the same issue.


Chairman Antosiak inquired of Don Saven: Do you feel that we need to decide whether or not he can get a 6 month temporary use permit?


Don Saven: I think so, because he basically indicated and I can only do 6 months. If he comes back before us with the issuing of wanting to use this on a more permanent issue, he will be back before us again.


Chairman Antosiak: The point that I am getting at, if walks into your office tomorrow with the variance that we have granted?


Don Saven: He could not, without going back before another hearing. A temporary use hearing.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I have no problem in approving a request for a 6 month temporary use permit but I would not go any further than that.


Moved by Vice-Chairman Reinke,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried.


Andy Kowal: Thank you, but I also asked you for a variance on the definition of the word structure, or a variance to allow a structure there. But, the point is moot. Thank you.



Case No. 98-019 filed by Mary Kuzdrzal, Stanley & Delphine Rzepka


Mary Kuzdrzal, Stanley and Delphine Rzepka wish a rehearing to allow a reduced front yard setback and projecteion which did not show up on the first engineered survey and was not a part of the ZBA Appeal Case No. 97-102, on December 2, 1997.

David Rzepka was present and duly sworn.


David Rzepka: We are here tonight to request from the Board to grant a variance for the front yard setback. Back in December of 1997 we presented in front of the Board a proposal for requesting a variance on the side yard setbacks. The Board at that time had granted approval for that. In prepartion for that meeting at that time, my father and I had hired David B. Smith and Associates Land Surveyors to do an initial survey on the property in order to be assured of what we were requesting from the Board would be correct. At the time the variance was not required for the front yard setback because according to the survey the front of the house was going to be 30 feet off of the property line and be in a line with the adjacent property owners on the north and the south.


David Rzepka: After we were granted that variance we continued with the building process as far as assembling the documents that are required for the City of Novi Building Department. We had hired Kostecke and Associates out of Wixom to complete the site drawing that is required by the Building Department which depicts the various things as elevations, driveways, the house the property lines, adjacent structures on adjacent property. Through their investigation Kostecke and Associates found out the David B. Smith and Associates had made an error in the location of the front property line. Kostecke and Associates spent a tremendous amount of time as far as surveying the property and they did locate the existing monuments from when the initial subdivision was platted back in the early 1900's. Some of the monuments were 2 or 3 feet below the grade but they did find them and they were able to close the survey within the tolerances that they are required to do so.


David Rzepka: This brings us to the point in case which is that the house has not changed locations from what was presented to the Board back in December, but based on new information from a correct survey now it indicates that the house does not meet the front yard setback as required by the City of Novi.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 32 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was one written response received, voicing approval. Copy in file.




There was no audience participation.




Don Saven: Just the fact that the building itself, as pointed out, is in the same location as it was initially when they came before the Board.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan: We appreciate the honesty. The scope of the project has not changed. I would have no objection.


Chairman Antosiak: Just for the record it is a 5.7 foot setback variance on the front yard, and a variance of 12 feet for the proposed deck that is projecting into this setback.


Member Brennan: Did the original plan have a deck?


David Rzepka: Yes, and the deck does not go any farther than the adjacent deck on the adjacent property.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Harrington,




Discussion on motion.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: A question. I understand and I really appreciate the petitioner coming back before the Board for the request. House location; I really don’t have a problem. The only problem that I have is that I think that the deck needs to be shortened up and not extend 12 feet out into the front yard projection.


Chairman Antosiak inquired of Don Saven: The way that the variance is phrased on the letter, it is really an 8' variance and not a 12'? The deck is 12'.


(Tape inaudible.)


Don Saven: A porch or unenclosed deck can project only 4' into the front yard.


(Tape inaudible.)


David Rzepka: The deck actually projects 9 feet from the face of the outer most elevation of the home; where the deck ties in the house.


(Tape inaudible.)

Member Meyer: I agree with Mr. Reinke. I appreciate the petitioner coming back to us and to try to make sure that he is doing this correct and being within the spirit of the ordinance.


Member Brennan: My point again is the clarification, if you look at the dotted line layout of the house; the projection of the deck would be approximately a foot beyond the existing wall of the adjacent houses.


(Tape inaudible.)


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I understand that point, but the original house is way to close to begin with. Now this is a chance to change that. What I am saying is that I agree with the house setback further than the original home was. What I am saying is that the deck is going out further than the existing house foot print was, which is making it encroach closer to the road than what was there. That is the part that I can’t support. I don’t think that there is a reasonable hardship to do that.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan: Possibly the deck could be at 10' instead of 12'.


(Tape inaudible.)


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I didn’t say that, I said that the deck is to close. The lot is overbuilt to begin with and by protruding the deck out closer than what the original house was, it is just intruding into the front yard to far.


(Tape inaudible.)


Roll Call: Yeas (5) Nays (1) Reinke Motion Carried


David Rzepka: At this time I would like to ask the Board that we waive the 5 day waiting period.


Chairman Antosiak: So moved, Mr. Saven is indicating that this is not a problem. All in favor, please say aye. Five ayes, one nay (Reinke). Five day waiver is granted.


Case No. 98-020 filed by Raymond Ott


Raymond Ott is requesting a side yard setback variance and a lot coverage variance to allow for a ten (10) foot expansion of the rear portion of the existing garage located at 1425 West Lake Dr.


Raymond Ott was present and duly sworn.


Raymond Ott: I have an existing 2 car detached garage that is presently 2 feet from the side property. What I would like to do is to expand the back of the garage out further to get additional storage space maintaining the existing lines of the garage and continuing that 2 feet back. So what I am looking for is a variance to continue that 2 feet from the side property line. I also need a variance for the lot coverage; the ordinance allows for 25% and with the proposed addition I would be at 28%.


Raymond Ott: The reason that I am considering expanding my garage is because of limited storage space in both my home and my garage. My home was built in 1943, roughly; it is on a crawl space so I do not have any storage below. I do have limited storage in the attic because of the roof line and because there is a ceiling fan; so there is a small storage in the attic. I do have a closet in each of the 3 bedrooms and I do have a closet in one bathroom and then a closet on the main floor. None of them are walk in closets, they are roughly between 3 feet to 7 feet closets.


Raymond Ott: My existing garage is a 2 car garage, with no space for storage. When you pull the car in, you are right up against the back. So, I can have no storage up against the back wall and I have limited storage on the sides depending upon how the car door opens. The rafters of the garage are 2 feet apart and because of how the rafters are shaped you can only slide items in every 2 feet.

Raymond Ott: What I have been doing is that I have been parking only one car in the garage and using the rest for storage. I have been putting some of my items that you normally put in the garage in my house and I have been taking my house items and storing them at friends or relatives homes. What I am trying to do is to avoid storing stuff on the property, on the side of the house or in my yard, etc.


Raymond Ott: This leads to the point that what I am trying to do is to maintain some of the property values, at least from my standpoint. When I look at a neighborhood and the appearance of the home and how the yards are kept all factor into the property values. Neighborhoods that have nicer homes and well kept yards certainly their property values are higher. Many of the older homes in the lakes area and mine included, have very limited storage space and you see a lot of stuff just stored out in the yard and on the sides of the home and to me it is kind of unsightly and it is not very fair to the neighbors. I am one of those and I don’t want to be, so what I would like to do is to have a clean yard and to be able to park 2 cars into the garage and to be able to bring stuff home from other peoples homes that are storing my stuff.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 28 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was a total of 4 written responses received, all voicing approval. Copies in file.




There was no audience participation.




Don Saven: Just a couple of things, number one; your electrical service to the house, where is it located in reference to the new construction?


Raymond Ott: It is on the opposite side of the house.


Don Saven: The other issue is how far is your neighbors’ garage from your property line?


Raymond Ott: The neighbors garage is atleast 6 feet.


Don Saven: One of the things as far as building codes are concerned is that the closer you get to the property line the more fire protection is required. Did anyone discuss this issue with you?


Raymond Ott: No.


Don Saven: You are going to need to provide fire protection if the Board so grants this variance.


Raymond Ott: Would I not already have fire protection on the existing garage?


Don Saven: Probably not. It would depend upon when it was built. I just want you to be aware of that should the Board approve the variance.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan inquired of Don Saven: Would he have to have fire protection for the entire structure?


Don Saven: I would like to see it done for the entire structure, but I cannot enforce that. The existing structure could remain as is, but the new structure would have to meet the fire codes.


Vice-Chairman Reinke inquired of Don Saven: What basically are you talking about with the fire protection or the fire rated walls?


Don Saven: Basically he is going to end up using some type of drywall type "c" or whatever on that side of the wall. Depending upon what you are going to use on the exterior skin, it is going to be your architect who will end up designing that.


Raymond Ott: The exterior siding will be the same.


Don Saven: The chances are that you will have an undercoating of something there or will apply it to the inside of the garage.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: With the response and especially with the most affected neighbor who does not seem to have a problem with the additional construction and the addition is going closer to the existing house so it is not going closer to the road. I understand the storage problem that the petitioner has, I really have no problem with the petitioner’s request.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Brennan: I agree, there is not negative input from the neighbors.


Moved by Vice-Chairman Reinke,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried


Case No. 98-021 filed by Frank Pellerito


Frank Pellerito is requesting avriance for temporary use approval to allow farming on property currently zoned I-2 (general industrial); located at Twelve Mile and Wixom Roads. Sidwell numbers 5022-18-200-002 and 5022-18-200-004.


Frank Pellerito was present and duly sworn.


(Tape inaudible.)


Frank Pellerito: The harship is that I have owned this property for 4 1/2 years and this property was a part of the "grand plan" that did not succeed. We are trying to develop this property. It is heavy industrial. We could put heavy storage, etc. there, but that is not the best use for the property.


Frank Pellerito: Presently we are farming adjacent property because of the inability to develop. We are requesting to farm to help pay taxes. In RA and R1 variances are not need to farm. This is I-2 and we do need a variance for this.


Frank Pellerito: The planners are hindering me from developing this property. We needed woodland surveys and wetland surveys.

Frank Pellerito: We are hoping to have a soy bean crop in this I-2 area. (An arial map was shown of property in question.)


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




(Tape inaudible.)


Kenneth Anderson, 27047 Wixom Road. I have a couple of questions. Number one, what is the time limit on the variance and does it automaticall revert back to the present zoning? I think he answered what he was going to grow there, soy beans.


Frank Pellerito: Soy beans would do the best on the property.


Kenneth Anderson: My biggest problem with it is that they always want to put apartments there and everybody knows that we have more than enough apartments in Novi. I am hoping that this isn’t some kind of a scheme to get more there. Do you own this property right now?


Frank Pellerito: Yes, I do. The I-2 property is the property that wraps around the asphalt, Cadillac Asphalt, it is not near the homes.


Kenneth Anderson: That is basically my question.


Chairman Antosiak: I think that I can respond to the first two. The length of the variance will be whatever the Board determines the length to be. There is no length that is specifically requested in the zoning request, we have granted in a similar variance on another parcel in Novi for a period of either one or two years. In answer to the second question the property remains zoned I-2, the variance would be the permission for the owner to use the property differently than zoned as we approve it for that time period we approve. If the variance is for one growing season or until the end of this year, it ends at the end of the year. It does not change the zoning.


Kenneth Anderson: With those answers, I myself, do not have any problems with this.


Frank Pellerito: At this time, maybe I should request a 2 year variance. I am hoping that I won’t have to use the second year.




Don Saven: I believe that on the table there was some information packets available for you, one from JCK and Associates dealing with the application for farming which is a letter dated April 2, 1998 and in summary it indicates while there is no objection to the farming I would like to see it confined to non-wetland areas while also preserving the setbacks and in discussion with Mr. Pellerito he has stated that he has no objections to this restriction and it is basically dealing with the second paragraph which our office has no objection to the farming activities on the property as long as the activity is out of the wetland areas as well as the 25 foot wetland setback; if the farming needs to cross wetland areas in order to access upper areas I would like to review the application to determine the impact for possible permit requirements and that was from JCK and Associates.


Don Saven: We also have Eric Olson here tonight, I had asked him to come regarding the woodlands issue if there is any questions in regard to those particular issues. Mr. Pellerito was before the woodlands review board and they could not act on it because they were concerned about the wetlands. It was kind of bouncing back and forth and I think that this is basically a good time to bring Eric up to clarify the issues.


(Tape inaudible.)


Eric Olson: Last December Mr. Pellerito came in front of the woodland review board and asked to farm on his property. He needed a woodland permit, because there is regulated woodlands on his property. At that time the woodland review board decided to have Mr. Pellerito come up with a map showing where the trees where on the property and the wetlands. We referred this to Sue Tepatti over at JCK and Associates to look at the possible wetland impact that this would have. There are areas on the site that can be farmed. The other obstacle that the woodland board had was that this property did need a ZBA variance.


Don Saven: In terms of the plans submitted, the area that is in yellow, the I-2, that is the area that you are looking to farm; is that correct?


Frank Pellerito: That is the area that I need the variance on. I am here for the variance of that. I have other property, additional and adjoining property, that I wish to farm that I don’t need the variance for that. I just need the approval from......


Don Saven inquired of Eric Olson: I just want to clarify by adding a couple of questions here. One of the areas of concern was that there was a plan that was presented regarding all of the trees that were on the property?


Eric Olson: I got a quick look at that and the woodland review board has not reviewed it in detail. When Mr. Pellerito comes back before the woodland review board that would be the time that the board would look at that and at that time we would need to know exactly which areas are going to be proposed to be farmed. Previously we had rough sketches and we did not know the impact of the trees were; but if the plan that he has presented shows these areas on it; it will be easier for us to determine.


Don Saven: The condition that is before you is with only the I-2 district.


(Tape inaudible.)


Don Saven: As far as the wetlands are concerned please review Ms. Tepatti’s report which indicated

that she does not have any problems with it as long as you maintain a 25 foot buffer area.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Sanghvi: Clarification. This area is zoned industrial and it has wetlands on it?


Don Saven: Farming is not permitted in an industrial district and that is why he is here. That is the only reason, obviously.


Frank Pellerito: If I may say something, if I was to try to use heavy industrial on that parcel there would be 1000 people in this room.


Member Brennan: You have answered all of the questions that I have outlined. It is your property, adjoining property is going to be farmed, it will be for a 2 year duration, if you are agreeable to meeting the wetlands and woodlands I have no problems with this.


Member Meyer: Do I understand correctly that you are willing to farm around the trees and around the wetlands?


Frank Pellerito: I am willing to farm around the trees that the woodland review board tells me that I have to.


Member Meyer: I looked at the map and it sure seems like there is a lot of interesting little dots all over the map. Good luck.


Frank Pellerito: I think that there may be 3,747 trees on that property.


Moved by Vice-Chairman Reinke,


Seconded by Member Bauer,



Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried


Case No. 98-022 filed by Library Sports Pub & Grill


Library Sports Pub & Grill is requesting a variance to allow for temporary outdoor seating for property located at 42100 Grand River Avenue from May 7, 1998 thru September 30, 1998 and from May 7, 1999 thru September 30 1999. Refer to ZBA Case Nos. 96-020 and 97-023.


Alan Barnett was present and duly sworn.


Alan Barnett: We would like to request a variance for the erection of the barrier, the replacement of the table and chairs for the service of food and beverage as in previous years. So as to not to consume the Board’s time extend this for a 2 year period to include 1998 and 1999.


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.




Don Saven: Will this be the same layout that you had previously?


Alan Barnett: Yes, identical.


Don Saven: We haven’t received any complaints that I am aware of regarding this particular issue. I would just advise the Board that you may want to put this up for continuing jurisdiction if you are going to go for the 2 years.


Chairman Antosiak: For the Board’s benefit I will state that the previous variance was limited to this petitioner and was under the continuing jurisdiction of the Board and that the applicant must insure through the Building Department that all public safety and welfare issues would be addressed.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried


Case No. 98-023 filed by Frank Morandy


Frank Morandy is requesting a 21.77' rear yard setback variance and a .3' side yard setback variance to allow for the construction of a garage for property located at 25731 Strath Haven in the Pioneer Meadows Subdivision. The property is zoned RA.


Frank Morandy was present and duly sworn.


Frank Morandy: First good evening and thank you for the opportunity to be here and hear my request. What I am requesting is a zoning variance that would allow me to add to the rear of my existing garage actually. I think the Notice is misleading, it makes it sound as if it were a free standing garage. This is an attached garage to my residence. At present our subdivsion is under the zoning district RA, which leads to a lot of questions in peoples minds as to why that is. Being that as it may, it restricts my ability to add to my garage other than up. If I am not mistaken the RA zoning is one acre and we are a 1/4 acre lot subdivision which is probably 95% built.


Frank Morandy: The proposed addition along with the present lot area coverage of my residence will not violate the 25% rule. Prior to learning of the Notice of Public Hearing mailing that goes on with the appearance here; I conducted my own survey and petitioned my neighbors and I received no objections from them. (Copy given to the Board.) I would like to state that these people are the 8 immediate neighbors of my residence; 3 are across the street, 1 on each side and 3 in the rear.


Frank Morandy: The reason for my request to build this is that I have a classic car worth many thousands of dollars and I also have a boat. Of course I keep that car under cover in my existing garage. My boat stays outside, which I would rather have inside for cosmetic purposes. Being that I keep the custom car in the garage, my everyday car sits outside.


Frank Morandy: On the Notice it also mentions that I would be requesting a .3' side yard variance which is only a continuation of my existing garage. I am not building to that point it is only a continuation. There are other residents in the sub with conditions that are similar to mine.


Chairman Antosiak indicated that there was a total of 25 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There were 2 written responses received, both voicing approval. Copies in file. Petition also given to the Board with 8 signatures, voicing approval.




There was no audience participation.




Don Saven: Just really quick; .3' is pretty small. One of the things that we are dealing with here is that this is a RA Zoning District. This is a constant problem for that subdivision and I do want to point that out to the Board. Our zoning requirement for RA is one acre as the gentleman has indicated and most of the lots are a 1/2 acre or less.


Frank Morandy: That would be 1/4 acre or there about.


Don Saven: He is continuing that garage along the same line that is in existence.


Member Brennan: The existing house as it sits, the setback is 44 feet so did he have a variance when the house was built, or did the zoning setback change at some point in time?


Don Saven: I believe that it was no an RA district at one time, but it was rezoned.


Frank Morandy: That has been rezoned Our subdivision, if I am not mistaken, has been rezoned 3 times since I have lived there and that has been since 1970. We are running to keep up with the times.


Member Brennan: My only other question is that I believe that Pioneer Meadows has a pretty active homeowners association, did you go through and get an approval?


Frank Morandy: Yes sir, I did. It was noted on the permit application.


Member Brennan: We always take into consideration the adjoining homeowners interest and you certainly seem to have the full support of everyone around you and it seems to be a reasonable request.


Chairman Antosiak: I didn’t find that notation.


Frank Morandy: It is a handwritten note on the building permit application on the top.


Chairman Antosiak: Yes, it is here signed by Diana Canup. There is also a note in here that when it was built it was zoned R3.

Vice-Chairman Reinke: I think that the petitioner’s request for what he wants to do is really having a minimal impact. It is going to the rear yard, the side yard is a continuation, therefore I have no problem.


(Tape inaudible.)


Moved by Vice-Chairman Reinke,


Seconded by Member Bauer,




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried


Case No. 98-024 filed by Larry Lax, representing Meadowbridge Park, Unit 7


Larry Lax, representing Meadowbridge Park, Unit 7, is requesting variance to Novi City Code, Section 2509.7 "LANDSCAPE PLANTING BUFFERS ABUTTING THE RIGHTS OF WAY", to allow for the construction of unit 7, in Meadowbridge Park at Eleven Mile and Bridge Streets.


Larry Lax was present and duly sworn.


Larry Lax: We are requesting a variance. The variance basically calls for 20 foot buffer with a 36 inch high planting. This is the last building that is going to be in here at the Meadowbridge Corporate Park. This site has 2 retention ponds on the site. One is to the north side and fronts the 96 expressway and one on the south side of the property. These are retention ponds that service the entire project. They gather storm water for the entire complex. These areas do provide an extended buffer and existing landscaping which is a positive element and has been certified by Linda Lemke, the landscape consultant. Basically we have a 60 foot buffer area for the majority and is substantially greater than the 20 foot wide greenbelt and the 36 inch high berm that is required. It is an existing condition and we feel a very positive element to our landscape plan. But it does adjust from the ordinance and we want to make the best of the situation. So we intend to supplement on the 60 foot line area to substantially increase the presence of the landscape in that area and we ask that there is the eastern corner of the northern berm which is on the top of board in front of me. The eastern corner of this portion of the greenbelt provides a combination of a berm and the required plantings which does narrow to a 15 foot greenbelt in that far eastern part. But, since the entire complex of buildings along the whole frontage of the 96 expressway maintains an average of 10 foot greenbelt without berms we feel that this greenbelt buffer meets the intent of the new and amended ordinance.


Larry Lax: On the south retention pond along Bridge Street, which is at the bottom of this board, we also provide a 60 foot natural greenbelt which contains a number of existing plantings; shrubs and deciduous evergreens and trees. We also intend to supplement that with additional plantings. The combination of the existing and proposed plant materials exceeds the affect which would be provided with the 20 foot greenbelt and berm. Therefore, we are requesting a variance to grant us the use of the existing natural features and plant materials which exceed the required setbacks and do meet the intent of the landscape ordinance and far exceed the landscape buffers provided in any area.


Chairman Antosiak indicated there was a total of 13 Notices sent to adjacent property owners. There was no written response received.




There was no audience participation.




Don Saven had no comment.


Member Brennan: I am always persuaded by Ms. Lemke’s recommendations and she approves of the plan.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Vice-Chairman Reinke;




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried.


Case No. 98-016A,B,C,D,E,F & G filed by Jon Sarkesian, representing Hagopian World of Rugs


Continuation of case filed by Jon Sarkesian Architects, representing Hagopian World of Rugs, requesting A) a wall sign 20' x 4'6" (90 sq. ft.) with the verbiage "HAGOPIAN RUGS * CARPET * HOME ACCENTS", B) a wall sign 17' x 3'9" (64 sq. ft.) with the verbiage "HAGOPIAN RUGS * CARPET * HOME ACCENTS"; C) a wall sign 16'9" x 3'10" (64 sq. ft.) with the verbiage "HAGOPIAN RUG OUTLET"; D) a ground sign 3'4" x 10 3/4" (3 sq. ft.) with the verbiage "HAGOPIAN (with directional arrow)"; E) a ground sign 6'8" x 10 1/2" (6 sq. ft.) with the verbiage "<RUG CLEANING DROP OFF RUG OUTLET>"; F) a wall sign 6' x 7" (3.5 sq. ft.) with the verbiage "RUG CLEANING", G) banners or pennants (unspecified number) of a solid color possibly with a logo to be placed on the building for property located at 43223 Twelve Mile Road.


Edmund Hagopian was present and duly sworn.


Chairman Antosiak indicated the petitioner made their request at the prior meeting and has put up mock up signs in the month between the meeting.


Chairman Antosiak: I believe that the petitioner stated their case very thoroughly at the last meeting and we suggested tabling until tonight so that we could review the mock ups.


Member Brennan: I have no problem starting this off. You swayed me a couple of ways and you dissuaded me in other ways. I agree that based on your comments from last meeting that this is topographically and geographically an odd shaped building with a lot of different characteristics. I am persuaded that you need some signage on the Twelve Mile side, on the westerly side; I am however, not in agreement with regard to the sign sizes of A, B & C. I think that they are significantly large. I think that the mock ups portray that. I drove by again tonight I was comparatively looking at the setback condition of your building with respect to others and comparable signage and my impression is that those 3 signs in particular and starting with A, B & C are too large.


Edmund Hagopian: We had a feeling that someone might have that problem. These signs are really actually smaller than others in the area. The sign that faces Novi Road is about 90 square feet. The Baronette has a sign that is 130 square feet. Lazy Boy has a sign that is over 100 square feet. So actually they are not much larger but smaller than others in the area. We also have a situation with our signs that the letters underneath our logo are approximately 12 inches and if they were to get any smaller they would not be visible or readable.


Member Brennan: One might argue though whether you need that visual verbiage under the name.


Edmund Hagopian: I think that it denotes what we sell and every retailer needs to do that. That is our logo and making those letters smaller would actually require them to made box style and they could not be illuminated individually. It would be a totally different type of signage then. Plus you wouldn’t be able to read them either. I think that when you look and I brought pictures too, but when you look at the sign on the building it looks proportionate. Actually I think it looks rather small. You don’t want a sign that you can’t read. Our intention is not to have a sign that is overwhelming to the building. I think that you can see from the photographs that we could easily have asked for a larger sign. We went down to the smallest sign that we felt could be legible and have statistics to back that up as well. Really I think that in order to make this store successful I think that those signs are probably small.


(Tape inaudible.)


Chairman Antosiak: Board Members, perhaps it would be best to address these signs in their order.


Member Harrington: I would just like to make some general comments. For orientation purposes is sign A the Novi Road sign?


Edmund Hagopian: It is the Twelve Mile Road sign. Sign B faces the ring road. Sign C is the Novi Road sign.


Member Harrington: I drove over and inspected the signs, I feel that they are large. I have a problem with the size of the signs. I don’t believe that those signs require the words Carpet and Home Accents. I don’t want to tell them what to put on their signs......tape inaudible............

I do agree with the Twelve Mile Road sign, I don’t agree with the size. I do agree with the ring road sign, but I don’t agree with the size. I am not convinced on the Novi Road sign is necessary.


Member Brennan: For a point of clarification, we did touch on this last month "B" and "C" are the 2 entrance ways. There are 2 separate entries into the store.


Member Harrington: So the purpose would then be to funnel the people to the entranceway but not to attract the people from Novi Road. So for all practical purposes the sign could be smaller.


Member Meyer: I looked at the signs today. I feel, too, that they are too large. I do believe that there is a way in which to very aesthetically advertise or identify the store and to do a good job of it with a smaller sign.


Edmund Hagopian: The issue of the letters is a big concern. I think that everyone in this room would agree that when you say the name Hagopian you think of rugs; and to state that home accents or carpets is something that doesn’t need to be advertised; I can’t disagree with you more. I think that our name is synonymous with rugs and I think that puts us at a disadvantage when we try to sell other products. We have to advertise that in order to justify 30,000 square feet. This store is really much to big for a local store.


Member Meyer: That is why I just made a clarification with my own use of the term; this is regarding identification and not advertising.


Member Bauer: I went by there twice and the sign on Twelve Mile Road it just hits you; it is there. I can’t see 90 square feet on that. I had to go around the parking lot because I couldn’t stop on Novi Road to see the other one and the one into the ring road, you are only picking up the people who are driving and it just doesn’t have to be that big.


Edmund Hagopian: We have based our proportions on very objective reasoning and we are not subjective about the size of the signs. There is a legibility issue from certain distances on those smaller letters. We can argue about whether those letters are needed, I think that they are. You can’t execute that logo with a smaller sign. That is the difficulty that we came up with. Certain of those signs could be bigger, we could have come in here with a bigger proposal; but we are using standards that we feel are very quantitative. We are not using arbitrary rationale and we are also looking at businesses that around the perimeter that have similar exposure. The sign from Lazy Boy and underneath the name Lazy Boy it says Furniture Gallery. Lazy Boy is synonymous with the recliner and I don’t know if furniture gallery is any different than carpets, rugs and home accents. I think that we are doing things the way that they should be done and our request is reasonable.


Member Brennan: Along the same line, right next to the sign that you reference is a sign that says Gorman’s and that is all that it says and it is closer to 40 square feet and it is very legible.


Edmund Hagopian: They have a little bit of a different situation there. They don’t have a slope or the topography.


Member Brennan: Let’s step back one, we are looking at not only size of signs but number of signs. I gave my impression that I felt that because of the building layout that you have some justification in the number of signs and I don’t know if the rest of the Board has that same feeling. We are a long way to even coming to agreement on size, let alone number.


Edmund Hagopian: I guess that I am addressing the size because it seems to be a bigger issue. We can address the number, I have a lot of opinions about the number of signs too. But, I think that our case for the number of signs is extremely strong. We have 2 front doors and one of them does not face Twelve Mile Road. That is a pretty powerful case. Twelve Mile is the most prominent facade of the building. Those signs haven’t been up but 3 or 4 days and we have been getting calls at our Birmingham store, there was immediate response. It is critical for a retailer to have the proper signage. Twelve Mile Road is imperative and the ones over the front doors are part of the package; we have 2 front doors so we need 2 signs. I don’t know how you want to deal with this, but I think that the size issue and the numbers are reasonable considering the hardships that we are facing there.

Chairman Antosiak: I agree with Mr. Brennan, I think that in talking about the first 3 signs and the variance request, I think that the number is appropriate. I think size is inappropriate. I don’t personally wish to get into a discussion about what you say on your sign. I think that you have the right to decide what you think that you need to say. But I think that we have an obligation to decide what from the sign perspective is in the best interest of the City. Hopefully this will be something that assists you in providing an identification for your store. I can easily see where Mr. Harrington could conclude that perhaps Hagopian Rugs Carpet and Home Accents was more like advertising than identification. So I for one am not going to engage in discussion of what you say on your signs, I think that it is appropriate for us to look at it in the context of what size of signage is required and I think that we have the right to set size that we believe is important and you may have to decide what you say within that size. I don’t know where we are going to conclude on this yet. That is my feeling. I would b happy to hear the feelings of other Board Members so that we can move towards a resolution.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: In going around the store and making circles around there this week end, I tend to agree that some identification is definitely needed. What is there is large and over sized, especially the one that faces Novi Road which is basically for direction, the size is way excessive. Having directions for where you drop off this or that is just adding clutter.


Edmund Hagopian: We felt that the directional signs were important based on our experience with doing this kind of business. We want to limit customer mistakes. Without signage you are not doing your community a service, you are not directing them in the right way to go. I am not going to add a dollar to my pocket just to make my customers happy, I think that it is important that when you have a building of this complexity that you make things clear. Why would you want people to drive around being confused? If we can avoid that and you can clarify that with less signage, that is fine with me. We have worked on this quite a bit and I think that we have gotten it down basically to what is allowable with the signs that are directional. We have changed the format of one of those signs but basically the amount of square footage is in line, it is just at a 90 degree angle as opposed to back to back. The ordinance does allow for a sign that is back to back, it just wouldn’t work on the property. Again, I have no interest in doing anything but making my customers to get where they want to go.


Chairman Antosiak: I, for one, was not troubled with the directional signs. I thought that they were probably needed for the area and the general traffic problem around the ring road.


Member Meyer: I could only go with 2 signs in identifying the business and those 2 would be at the entrances. I believe that identification signs could be helpful. I do not approve of the banner or pennant type of signs.


Member Sanghvi: From the information that I see it is not just one business but 4 different kinds of businesses involved in the same building.


Edmund Hagopian: We have different products, not necessary different businesses.


Member Sanghvi: My problem is really with the banners and the pennants. How large should they be? (Tape inaudible.) I have no questionable objection with any of the large signs, it is the question of how large should they be? Aesthetics should enter here. Maybe you would like to come up with some smaller signs so that everybody is happy and there could be a compromise.


Edmund Hagopian: I think that is rational thinking. I didn’t come in here thinking about compromise. It is difficult to know where exactly we could cut. The sign on Twelve Mile Road is critical to the life of this business without a doubt that would be a very scary thing if I had to do without that sign. The business wouldn’t work without that sign, period. So the size of that sign right now based on what I have seen in terms of statistics that you can read a 12 inch letter from about 150 feet and that is standing still and not driving, so I would be hesitant to compromise on the Twelve Mile Road sign as I think it would be a big mistake. I feel basically the same way about the ring road, it has a greater setback from the ring road and I have the same sized letters. Where I think that we may be able to make some compromises is on the Novi Road side that is facing Gorman’s; it is visible from the corner and it is not as important and I think that it is a good place for us to work on a compromise. The flags, again, what we are really asking for with the flags is an additional American flag at this point. We have totally rewritten our request on the flags and we are allowed to have two 4 by 6 flags flying your corporate colors and one American flag. That is fine, if you want to compromise we can go back to that but it is in the ordinance and what we are asking for there is one additional American flag to balance out and that was at the recommendation of the Board last time. I would be willing to give up the extra American flag, I don’t think that it matters to anybody here whether it is there or not we are just looking for some balance. So if it takes reducing the size of the sign facing Gorman’s to get this passed I would be very cooperative.


Member Harrington: When do you open?


Edmund Hagopian: We are hoping to open our doors in July.


Member Harrington: Then we have some time to work with you on this issue.


Edmund Hagopian: We are going to get possession of the building and the rent starts on the first of June.


Member Harrington: But you start earning your money to pay the rent when the customers come in, are you targeting July?


Edmund Hagopian: Yes, we are doing the carpeting and once the contractor is done we are going to carpet and put up our displays which are extensive and put our offices in and we feel that will take about a month. If everything goes perfect it should be mid July.


Member Harrington: We have to do something. We do have a window of opportunity here and I will tell you what I would like to see. I would like to see and we have seen the mock-up of what they want; I would like to see a mock-up of sign "A" at 60 square feet, sign "B" at 50 square feet, sign "C" at 50 square feet. Those are interim ranges on the signs. I note with great interest that the proposed variances are over 50% of allowable signage in every case. I would like to bring it closer to what the ordinance permits before I make a decision as to whether or not I am going to hold them to the ordinance. I think with those ranges or if the Board feels that they are picking numbers that seem to make sense; I would like to see them come back next month and review those issues. I don’t feel comfortable simply picking some number that again I haven’t seen. I have seen what they want and my reaction is that Twelve Mile is huge, my reaction to Novi Road was that it certainly is bigger than it needs to be and if that is going to be an entranceway, Sign "C" I am probably more comfortable with that than with the other two. I would like to see if we could get closer to what the ordinance permits. That is my suggestion.


Member Meyer: I have read that all of these signs are going to be illuminated. I would like to see one of them illuminated because I really believe that we were thrown a curve with a certain building down on Eight Mile and Haggerty Road. I would like to see what it looks like illuminated. I would like to see what Hagopian looks like illuminated. I would like to know the color and I want to know if it will be aesthetically pleasing. This is a good gentleman and he means well, but he can’t seem to understand where we are coming from; we don’t want to turn that corner of Twelve Mile and Novi Road into a sign city.


Edmund Hagopian: Really I understand that. First of all most of these signs are not visible and you can see only one of them at a time. So, I think that you don’t have to look at the cumulative affect of the signs, the consumer is only going to be seeing one at a time. Second of all, one of the things that I think is really not appropriate with the banner signs that unless you are trained in this area you are going to have a problem; first of all the style of lettering that we are using with Hagopian is very thin and I don’t know if that issue has even been brought up or thought of. You are talking about how a sign dominates an area, like the Baronette sign, a big block sign and the actual background is illuminated versus a sign like Hagopian where you are using basically a plum colored letter that is very thin and the whole white background goes away. I know that you are looking at the square footage of the sign but you are looking at a very fine lettered sign; the detail and the legibility of a sign like that is completely different than a big K-Mart sign or Sears that has solid block letters but yet you are taking the square footage of a sign like that and you are putting it on a Hagopian sign which is completely different. Then when you are looking at it you see this big white banner that makes the sign look huge. Those two things are just not the case. I know the way that the square footage is measured and if you are not looking at the style of lettering you are missing the boat. This is not a gaudy sign by any means. The fineness of the letters make it a little harder to read and if you don’t have the size you will not have the clarity.


Member Harrington: If every time that one of us speaks we are going to get point and counterpoint we aren’t going to get out of here. I think it would be appropriate for us to continue the Board dialogue and get some feedback and commentary from the speaker; but I would like to hear what the Board says because I don’t want to be here until midnight on these signs if all we are going to do is to take a look at some other time.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I think that Mr. Harrington has brought up a good point, we saw what the petitioner has said that he really feels that he needs. I think that we need to look at something smaller. We might find out and totally agree with him. It is hard for us to visualize and we don’t really want to have you come up with something that is not going to work for you either. I think that at this point in time Mr. Harrington has brought up a good point that if we look at something that needs sizes that he has talked about, I don’t get a true relationship, it proves a point that this is not sufficient that you need to have something more in line with what you are talking about. But until we figure that we can make comparisons it is hard to judge.


Edgar Hagopian: I understand, I don’t mean to be argumentative, I am very passionate about my business. I am passionate about this store and I apologize for causing this meeting to go over.


Member Brennan: With respect to signs D, E and F, I don’t have any real problem with those; they are rather small, they are directional and it is a big complex that you can come in from in a lot of ways. I have no problem with the compromise that we have with regards to the flags; the American flag and the Hagopian flag at both entrance ways. So, I think that we could have some resolution on D, E, F, and G. If you are agreeable to scaling down A, B and C for us to take another look at, you may prove your point in sign A that a sign of 60 square feet that we may see that sign and find that it appears to small for that Twelve Mile side which is big and massive. It may prove itself and the question would be if you want to go another month to take a look at A, B and C.


Edgar Hagopian: I am Chairman of the firm. I would like to make a comment to one observation that was made, we have never done anything that has not been aesthetically pleasing. I want everyone in this room to know that anything that I have ever touched has been at the very highest level of aesthetics. The building that I built on Eight Mile Road is a show place and it is a 30 year old building and you can compare it to any new one and it will stand on it’s own. In Birmingham we took the worst looking building and turned it into a beautiful building. Even a warehouse that we have in Oak Park Industrial Park is an outstanding facility. We didn’t build this building to spend millions of dollars for it to look like the south side of Eight Mile Road. We are very much concerned with aesthetics. I think that it is critical that the success of this building is highly depended on the fact that we are branching into new areas and as my son has indicated we have carpet and we have not actively sold carpet for some 20 years, home accents is a new direction for our firm and it is critically important for people to understand that this cannot be accomplished just by advertising. We spend millions of dollars on advertising and you just cannot accomplish this just simply by advertising. Also I might add that I took a photograph from the parking lot of the mall not even an equal distance from our store to the Sears store, I didn’t take a photograph of the Sears sign but the Sears sign you can see far more clearly from Twelve Mile Road than you can our sign because of the boldness of the letters. My son, pointed that out they are very low profile letters and when you illuminate them you get far less impact than from the bold. Sears stores and the Hudson stores all have 3 sided signs, so there are reasons for it. Out site is a very difficult site. It took a long time for us to develop and a lot of hard work and we are trying to optimize the benefits of that location. We implore you to give this extraordinary consideration because the problems are extraordinary.


Edmund Hagopian: I have just had the opportunity to discuss with our man who is going to be doing the work on the signs and it took it just about a month to get this sign on paper and probably another month to do the sign smaller and then basically he would need about 6 to 8 weeks to actually produce the sign So you are looking at basically 30 days for the temporary, and another 60 days; so that would put us sometime in July. We have the keys to the building and we have no signs for about a month.


(Tape inaudible.)


Member Harrington: You will still have your mock-up and you are getting calls already in Birmingham. I have suggested an alternative here that I would like to see for an area of compromise. If the petitioner has no interest in going along and preparing a rendering because of their own time constraints I am prepared to vote on everyone of these signs. I would like to see the renderings of 60 feet, 50 feet and 50 feet and if this is such an urgent issue maybe the sign person can work overtime to advance this, I really don’t know; but if there is no interest in this I will vote tonight.


Edmund Hagopian: We would like to address some of the concerns.


Chairman Antosiak: I think that we are passed the concern point and I guess we would like to hear comments as to the proposal that was made. I think that we know what your concerns are and you know what our concerns are and what Mr. Harrington is attempting to do is to see if there is a compromise position that would be acceptable to the Board short of voting on everyone of your requests as shown.


Edmund Hagopian: One of the things that we talked about just a minute ago was the possibility of reducing the signs 10%, which would basically take the 12 inch high letters and bring them down closer to a little over 10 inches. He could still make them individual letters which isn’t as obtrusive as having a block, but if you make them smaller they would be more obtrusive because they would have to be in a box. So he can take them down to just over 10 and he feels that he can construct the sign by doing a 10 inch letter individually and that would allow us to reduce the signs on A, B and C by that amount. That would be a compromise.


Member Harrington: I would be delighted to view renderings of both 60, 50 and 50 as well as whatever compromise the petitioner feels would necessary. You could look at one right on top of the other. I could be persuaded. I think that this is a significant sign package, you are looking at 7 variances here. These are more than 50% greater than ordinance allows. I don’t feel comfortable simply approving a sign where I have not seen a rendering on it and I know that the sign is a variation of what was requested. What I hear is let’s make a deal and we can go with 10%, which was not what was presented to us in the first place in order to get a favorable vote tonight. I will vote. But I can’t vote favorably on a 10% reduction that I haven’t seen. I want to see these signs and we have until July to do it. That is where I am at.

Member Meyer: Let’s be very clear, we are asking them to have it ready for us the first Meeting in May.


Member Harrington: Only a mock-up, just like everyone else who sits in this audience.


Member Meyer: His very words were 6 to 8 weeks, so he will have the sign when they open the doors to the public in July. I don’t see what the problem is here. I do want to say that this is 50% over the ordinance and you are willing to come in at 10%. That doesn’t seem like a big compromise to me.

Edmund Hagopian: Again, I am using the signs in the area as my bench mark.


Member Harrington: Let me address that issue because the other speaker was talking about that too. I think that it is important that the petitioner understands that if you are new to this area that we deal with literally hundreds of sign cases per year and every Board Member sits for 3 years at a time and most of us are on our second, third or longer terms; so we have a base line of literally thousands of signs that we are trying to deal with and having said that every sign package and every variance request stands and falls on it’s own merits. It has to be that way. It is of interest to us what other signs may be, but it is not a criteria for us as to what everyone else in the City is doing. What is significant to us is what you are doing and how it fits in with what we view City Council intended when they passed the ordinance. That is the data base that we are trying to work with and to compare you to. So, you can come up with 5 which would justify larger signs and if we wanted to spend the time we can name 20 right off of the bat which are much more conservative at ordinance or close to ordinance and that doesn’t even consider all of the people who don’t come to us for variances and can simply just live within the ordinance. We don’t really want to get into and it is not really persuasive to us what Sears or Hudsons or the coffee shop is doing; what is significant to us is what you are doing. That is why we want to work with you and that is why we want to see what your proposals are. If you have a proposal that is 10% less, we will look at it. I sure want to see 60, 50 and 50 because it seems to make sense to me. If you have some other proposal and you go back to the drawing board and you let us know by letter between now and the next meeting that you have reworked this and have come up with something different; this is what you the Board wanted to see but this is what we really think would work for us. We want what works for you the best. We will look at both of them or we will look at 4 of them, whatever.


Edgar Hagopian: I have actually had to do this in Birmingham as well. The issue with me and I agree that I can probably put up a smaller sign, but the reason that I am being so difficult that I am going to have lose the tag line underneath. That is what is the most difficult.


Member Harrington: What is the tag line?


Edgar Hagopian: Carpets, Rugs and Home Accents.


Member Harrington: That is advertising.


Edgar Hagopian: That is not uncommon in signs. Scott Schuptrine, fine furniture. Lazy Boy, furniture gallery, Fretters which is no longer there with appliances. Loosing that is what would be hard to deal with. You are right I could make the sign 20% smaller and it would still say Hagopian and I think that we could all find a compromise. I think that what I am going to have to give up is the tag line. But you know what, maybe I don’t, but that is a big risk.


(Tape inaudible.)


Edgar Hagopian. The mall ring road is why we bought the property. It is a scary thought to drop that. I will do a mock up, if that is what the Board wants. It is going to be very difficult to achieve what I want to achieve.


(Tape inaudible.)


Jeff Heyn from Planet Neon: How do you suggest that we put 3 mock-ups up? I guess what I am saying is that what this man is after is that he is trying to come up with a sign that works with smaller letters. If we place the mock-ups up there and you take a look at them without artibrarily saying what size.....


Member Meyer: That was 60 square feet and 50 square feet; it wasn’t percents, he is the one that brought up the percent.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I really think that if you went with the guidelines of 60 square feet on Twelve Mile and 50 square feet on the ring road it is going to give us a demonstration of the two. Maybe there is someplace in between and maybe it points out that we need to be where you are at. But until we get something that we can relate to that is different than what is there, we can’t really say yes or no. I don’t think that we need 3 signs. I think that if we went up with what Mr. Harrington has suggested it is going to give us "here is what it was, here is what this is, let’s look at this and be realistic about it".


Edmund Hagopian: I think that is what we will do.We would like to be on the next docket.


Chairman Antosiak indicated the case will be tabled.


Member Harrington: I f you exercise your descretion and decide the 60 square feet, the 50 square feet and the 50 square feet and you put something adjacent to it that you think better fits than what is there, because we have seen what is there, if there is something else that you and Planet Neon can work out and put together that you think demonstrates some are a smart guy, you know what I am saying, if you want to put up another sign we will look at them both.

Chairman Antosiak: We will table the request for A, B and C to the May Meeting. Do we wish to address D, E and F (the directional signs) tonight?


Vice-Chairman Reinke: I think that we should hold onto everything.


Chairman Antosiak: Then I would move that in Case 98-016 A thru G be table to the May Meeting, which the date is May 5th. All in favor, please say aye. All ayes. Case tabled.



Other Matters


Greystone Construction, representing Main Street, is requesting an extension of a variance that was granted on November 6, 1997, Case No. 97-083.


Bill Matykowski was present.


Chairman Antosiak: We have a copy of your letter in file, which basically explains why a permit was not able to be pulled within the 90 days following the granting of the variance.


There was no comment from the Building Department.


Bill Matykowski: We are not ready to manufacture the sign, all we need now is the permit.


Chairman Antosiak: The variance expired on February 6, 1998; so it really needs to be extended from that date forward. I would suggest 90 days.


Bill Matykowski: That would be plenty of time.


Moved by Chairman Antosiak,


Seconded by Member Brennan,




Roll Call: Yeas (6) Nays (0) Motion Carried


Chairman Antosiak: We have one other item before the election of officers. I asked Nancy to give you a letter from Ed Kriewall to the Council as well as the response from David Fried, regarding a proposal to change the ordinance authorizing the ZBA to allow the Zoning Board to hear variance requests prior to site plan approval. I would ask that you read this. There will be a Public Hearing on this ordinance at either next Wednesday’s Planning Commission Meeting or the first Wednesday in May.


Chairman Antosiak: I would ask that if you have any opinion that you raise your issues to the Planning Commission who will send a recommendation to amend or to not amend to Council. I spoke to the Planning Commission when they considered this last Wednesday because I am personally opposed to this change and I will speak again at the Public Hearing whenever that will be.


Member Harrington: To the extent that this is a public forum and it has been addressed I won’t go into the merits of the particular ordinance that has been proposed, but I will go on record as being very concerned about opinions which have not been brought or shared with the Members of this Board or at least they have not been made. If there is a perception or a "glaring problem" with ZBA or that something that we are doing is having a chilling affect on development in the community it is news to me. In the years that I have been on this Board I am unaware of a single complaint ever having been made about what we are doing here as a Board in contrast to other areas or procedural aspects of the City. I would also point out that apparently there is a lot of energy behind this and I was informed by a Member of Council that there is a so called fast track that needs to be implemented to assist development. I think that development is great. I am unaware that anyone has ever mentioned to me or come to this Board and in public comment that indicated a particular case that there has been a problem. I don’t think that we should be the scape goat if the real issues involve another area of the City. I would like to know who are these people that feel aggreived and what project is it in the last 10 years that has been particularly affected by the policy of this Board. I am wondering what the real issue is and I guess that I will find that out April 15th or at a Council Meeting.


Don Saven: As long as I have been a Member of this Board I have never run across any delay in a project because of the Board’s decisions. I think that we can all be proud of what we do and how we go about doing it. I think that this is an issue whereby a company or a corporation wants to come to town and seeing how there is a lot of money to be spent this would be the beginning of this process and I think that this is the concern that the City has, right off the front they know that they have a problem. The upfront issue is that we know that there is a problem and we could definitely address it, we are seeing this probably as a concern in major developments.


Member Sanghvi: I don’t think that this is a reflection on the Zoning Board of Appeals and its’ function. It is the way that the system is set up and that is why it needs to change. I don’t want to take offense at this kind of comment.


Vice-Chairman Reinke: My only concern on this is that if something comes to us and then they go through the planning process and now they have more trouble because of what we did ahead of a total review of the project. That is my concern.

Chairman Antosiak: I have some question as to how much authority the Planning Commission or the Council has to undo what we may do. I don’t think that they have any.


Member Sanghvi: I think that should be their concern and not our concern.


Chairman Antosiak: I am concerned from a planning policy perspective to the City, that is why I have the concern. Whatever your opinion, if you have one, I would encourage you to go and give it.


Don Saven: We have been diligently pursuing the issues regarding the TC1 sign ordinance, which you were aware that we were starting to work on back in November. Other issues were cleaning up the sign ordinance as it was adopted back in the 1970's; we have some language in there that needed to be cleaned up and we needed to clean that language up along with the new TCI sign ordinance. It is moving along. It is taking a lot longer than we anticipated. Hopefully we will have this somewhere presentable in the near future. I do want you to know that we are not sitting on it, we are moving on it but there are some very heated discussions in this area. Once we get everything formalized and what we think is going to be presented to Council, I would like you to have a copy to look at for your views.


Chairman Antosiak: The last item on the agenda is the election of officers for the upcoming year.


Moved by Member Harrington,


Seconded by Member Brennan,




Chairman Antosiak indicated we have a motion and a second, if Mr. Reinke has no objection, we will vote. All in favor please say aye. All ayes. Laverne Reinke is the new Chairman.


Moved by Member Harrington,


Seconded by Vice-Chairman Reinke,




Chairman Antosiak indicated we have a motion and a second, if Mr. Brennan has no objection, we will vote. All in favor, please say aye. All ayes. Frank Brennan is the new Vice-Chairman.


Moved by Member Brennan,


Seconded by Member Harrington,



Chairman Antosiak indcated we have a motion and a second, if Mr. Meyer has no objection, we will vote. Alll in favor, please say aye. All ayes. Michael Meyer is the new Secretary.


The new officers are: Laverne Reinek - Chairman

Frank Brennan - Vice-Chairman

Michael Meyer - Secretary


Member Harrington: I would like to congradulate Mr. Antosiak on a superior job this past year.


Chairman Antosiak: Thank you, it has been fun.





The Meeting was adjourned at 10:55 p.m.











Date Approved Nancy C. McKernan

Recording Secretary