TUESDAY, MAY 2, 2006

Proceedings had and testimony
taken in the matters of the ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS,
at City of Novi, 45175 West Ten Mile Road, Novi,
Michigan, Tuesday, May 2, 2006.


Mav Sanghvi, Chairman
Justin Fischer
Cynthia Gronachan
Linda Krieger
Gerald Bauer
Tim Shroyer


Don Saven, Building Department
Thomas Schultz, City Attorney
Timothy Schmitt, Planner
Alan Amolsch, Ordinance Enforcement
Robin Working, ZBA Recording Secretary


Machelle Billingslea-Moore, Certified Shorthand



Case Number Page

3 06-027 6

4 06-033 27

5 06-034 48

6 06-036 55

7 06-037 65

8 06-038 76

9 06-039 88

10 06-042 96




1 Novi, Michigan

2 Tuesday, January 10, 2006

3 7:30 p.m.

4 - - - - - -

5 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

6 e.) We are in session again.

7 And try to recommend approval

8 of the Minutes of March 7th, 2006.

9 Have you had an opportunity to

10 look at the Minutes?

11 Are there any changes to the

12 Minutes, deletions?

13 MEMBER FISCHER: Motion to

14 approved as submitted.


16 MEMBER SANGHVI: All those in

17 favor of approval of the Minutes, please signify

18 by saying Aye.


20 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

21 e.)

22 All right. Now the Minutes

23 are out of the way. We'll get on with the

24 business.




1 Before we do that, this is the

2 segment for the public remarks. If anybody

3 wants to address the Board, which is not

4 pertaining to any case on the agenda

5 tonight, they are welcome to do so at this

6 time.

7 Seeing none --



10 MEMBER GRONACHAN: I would like

11 to approach the Board, if I could.

12 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

13 e.)


15 Sanghvi.

16 Good evening.

17 Such a handsome group. I

18 never saw you guys from this side before.

19 My name is Cindy Gronachan.

20 And as the audience here knows that I've

21 have been on the Zoning Board for five

22 years. And I wanted to officially give in

23 my notice to my fellow Board Members this

24 evening, this will be my last meeting. I




1 resigned on Sunday to -- in front of the

2 Council. I'm moving to New York State,

3 which is my home State, and I wanted to take

4 a minute to thank all of you for your

5 camaraderie the years that we had to work

6 together, the friendships that were made.

7 The memories that I take with me -- the

8 boxes are packed, but what went on in front

9 of the Board and in any executive sessions

10 with the attorneys and with Don, and

11 learning with the residents, that will

12 always be in my heart. And I wanted to let

13 you guys know that.

14 And the one thing I don't want

15 you to ever forget is that we're here for

16 the residents, so remember that; and that

17 less is better.

18 So thank you as -- for being

19 my cohorts in crime, and I wish you all the

20 best. And thank you for the reception this

21 evening.

22 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you,

23 Miss Gronachan.

24 I'll reserve my comments about




1 your departure at a later time.


3 yeah, because I don't have the oil can, and I'm

4 out of Kleenex.


6 MEMBER SANGHVI: All right.

7 Let's call the first case, Case Number: 06-027,

8 filed by Larry D. Craighead, architect

9 representing Sam's Club at 27300 Wixom Road, Novi

10 Promenade.

11 MR. PLUMMER: May I approach,

12 Mr. Chairman?

13 My name is Doug Plummer, and I

14 represent Larry Craighead, architect, for

15 the signage, the five signs that we are

16 applying for.

17 MEMBER FISCHER: Point of order,

18 Mr. Chair, shouldn't he be sworn in?

19 MEMBER BAUER: Would you raise

20 your hand.

21 Do you swear or affirm to tell

22 the truth regarding this case?

23 MR. PLUMMER: Yes, I do.

24 MEMBER BAUER: Thank you, sir.




1 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

2 MR. PLUMMER: And it's for the

3 Sam's Club located on Wixom Road. And what

4 we have before you is a -- I think I can put

5 this up for you guys. You've got the

6 photographs there in front of you. And we

7 are looking at having five signs on front of

8 the facade. There is a ten foot by ten foot

9 diamond sign. We have the main sign that's

10 right above the vestibule, which is -- as

11 you're looking at the perspectives, it's

12 right above the exit/entrance sign; which is

13 our main Sam's Club sign located above the

14 vestibule.

15 We are asking for also, in

16 addition to that, a ten foot by ten foot

17 diamond sign, which is, as you're looking at

18 your perspective, it's the front elevation.

19 If you look to the right of that front

20 elevation, is the ten by ten Sam's sign;

21 that's exterior illuminated.

22 We're also asking for a five

23 foot by five foot ancillary sign which has

24 additional characters for the store, for




1 optical, pharmacy, and One-hour Photo. And

2 also we're asking for the entrance/exit

3 signs, which you'll also see on the

4 vestibule right below the Sam's sign. And

5 then off to the left of the Sam's Club, the

6 vestibule entry, you'll notice -- it's kind

7 of in light white letters -- it's flatbed

8 loading area.

9 We feel that these signs,

10 particularly the sign that's on the front

11 elevation, the Sam's sign, the ten by ten

12 that's on the right elevation as you're

13 coming down Wixom Road, you really don't

14 even know it's a Sam's Club until you

15 getting to the -- Huntington Bank where we

16 got the traffic light, and also the entry

17 into the Target Store.

18 So we're asking for customers

19 coming down Wixom Road to be able to

20 understand and know that this is a Sam's

21 Club. And obviously, that's going to effect

22 sales for the Sam's Club if that sign is not

23 placed on the front of the building.

24 We also want the ancillary




1 signs -- the Optical Pharmacy and One Hour

2 Photo to further enhance what's required --

3 what's available inside the Sam's Club; and

4 also, that would effect sales if we did not

5 have those signs on the front. In addition

6 to that, the entrance/exit signs merely

7 provide a means for customers as they come

8 around to the front vestibule of the

9 building to be able to know that that's the

10 entry and exit to the Sam's Club.

11 And last, is the flatbed

12 loading area, which, as you can see in the

13 rendering, you can see a car that's parked

14 up underneath that area; that's where

15 customers would be notified by the signage

16 to know that that's where they pull in

17 underneath the canopy to load up their

18 merchandise from the Sam's Club.

19 Again, all these signs, if we

20 don't have these would effect the sales of

21 the Sam's Club and further would enhance the

22 effect the tax that Sam's pays for their

23 merchandise -- the customer would pay for

24 their merchandise.




1 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

2 Does anyone in the audience

3 wish to address the Board regarding this

4 case?

5 Seeing none, now I will inform

6 the Board that there were 17 notices mailed;

7 zero approvals, zero objections.

8 Building Department?

9 MR. AMOLSCH: Just a point of

10 clarification. I believe the gentleman

11 asked (unintelligible) vestibule sign. They

12 are not -- this sign was already approved as

13 there one sign permitted. They are asking

14 for variances (unintelligible.)


16 MR. SAVEN: Mr. Chairman, I'd

17 also like to point out that on the front

18 elevation, just below the perspective

19 elevation has given you height requirements

20 or height of the building gives you a little

21 bit better perspective to the facade.

22 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you

23 Mr. Saven.

24 I will open it to the Board




1 for discussion.

2 Mr. Shroyer?


4 Thank you, Mr. Chair.

5 First of all, sir, would you

6 put your smaller copy rendering on the other

7 side?

8 MR. PLUMMER: Oh, Yes.

9 MEMBER SHROYER: So that way our

10 audience can see what we are discussing, as well.

11 It's a very attractive

12 building. I'd like everybody to see it, or

13 at least part of it.

14 MR. PLUMMER: I'll try to get

15 it.

16 Right there, this is the one

17 that is not (unintelligible) the variances.

18 This is the one that's on the

19 (unintelligible.)

20 MEMBER SHROYER: The first

21 question I would have is in (unintelligible) you

22 stated about the sign to the right that's clear

23 at the end of building.

24 MR. PLUMMER: Yes, sir.




1 MEMBER SHROYER: (Unintelligibl

2 e.) from Wixom Road, traffic northbound, etc.


4 MEMBER SHROYER: How is that

5 different than the north side of the building

6 from being viewed from Grand River?

7 MR. PLUMMER: Well, you can

8 get the view of the -- if you're coming

9 southbound on Wixom, you can see the Sam's

10 Club sign that's right above the vestibule

11 as you're headed -- actually if you're

12 headed southbound on Wixom Road. If you're

13 headed northbound on Wixom Road, you can't

14 even -- you can't even tell that it's Sam's

15 Club at all. So, that's the reason that we

16 are asking for the additional signage.

17 In fact, I was there just

18 tonight, and they do have a little banner

19 right now in the location where we're asking

20 for this sign -- this one here -- and this

21 front sign. And if that sign was not there

22 you could -- I mean, it's just a massive

23 building. You can't even tell what it is

24 until you get -- the reason for this is




1 that, the vestibule is at an angle. It's at

2 about a 45 degree angle to Wixom Road. And

3 really the only opportunity that you get to

4 see that it's a Sam's Club is after you pass

5 through that traffic light going northbound,

6 past the Huntington Bank.

7 MEMBER SHROYER: I understand

8 that.

9 What I'm trying to ask is, for

10 example, the westbound traffic on Grand

11 River --

12 MR. PLUMMER: Uh-huh.

13 MEMBER SHROYER: -- are they

14 going to have difficulty seeing the building? I

15 mean seeing the building, obviously. Are they

16 going to be able to see your signage?

17 MR. PLUMMER: Yes, I believe

18 so. I believe they will.

19 MEMBER SHROYER: (Unintelligibl

20 e) I had a little bit of difficulty. I didn't

21 know if perhaps there was another big box

22 building that was going to be blocking the view

23 or --

24 MR. SCHULTZ: If I may through




1 the Chair. I believe that the main part of the

2 center is complete and (unintelligible) out box,

3 sort of closer to the road is what's left.


5 Thank you.

6 I also wanted to ask -- the

7 flatbed loading area sign --

8 MR. PLUMMER: Yes, sir.


10 understand the need for that. I mean, it's

11 obvious when somebody's trying to enter or exit,

12 the need for those signs. But to me, it's

13 obvious that that area is used for loading and

14 unloading.

15 Why do you think there's a

16 need for a flatbed loading sign?

17 MR. PLUMMER: Well, it's a

18 sign that's out on the front canopy, the

19 overhead canopy; and we really designate

20 that area for a drive-thru lane as a canopy.

21 And customers can basically drive through

22 from the rear of the club through going

23 toward the front vestibule. And so we feel

24 that we wanted to designate on the front of




1 the building that there is a loading area

2 that customers can use to pull up through

3 underneath the canopy, and put their

4 merchandise in their vehicles.


6 other part of the question I had regarding that

7 is to me it's a little misleading. I don't have

8 a flatbed. I have a car. To me, it would make

9 more sense to say loading area, than flatbed or

10 any other type of designation (unintelligible)

11 would indicate it's a truck, a straight bed truck

12 or something along that line. I don't know if

13 that can be discussed during this, because the

14 request came in as flatbed loading area.

15 Can we discuss verbiage?

16 MR. SCHULTZ: Any the context of

17 how many words (unintelligible) to meet the

18 purpose of the request.

19 MEMBER SHROYER: Would you be

20 open to changing the wording on that sign?

21 MR. PLUMMER: Something I

22 would have to get with Walmart on and find

23 out from them, through the Sam's Club, get

24 their -- this is typically what they have




1 put in in a lot of the new Sam's Clubs that

2 they're building across the Country.

3 MEMBER SHROYER: I would have

4 thought it would be to their advantage

5 (unintelligible.)

6 This is the only question I

7 had, Mr. Chair.

8 I am not opposed to any of

9 these variance requests.

10 MEMBER SANGHVI: Member Bauer?

11 MEMBER BAUER: On that flatbed

12 area --

13 MR. PLUMMER: Yes, sir?

14 MEMBER BAUER: -- you have a car

15 coming out --

16 MR. PLUMMER: Yes, sir.

17 MEMBER BAUER: (Unintelligible)

18 sign is up there going the other way. You are

19 going to have troubles.

20 MR. PLUMMER: There -- the

21 entrance sign is on the back side of the

22 canopy area. I see what you're saying. We

23 do have arrows -- we do have arrows.

24 MEMBER BAUER: It's very




1 confusing.

2 MR. PLUMMER: We do have

3 arrows that would be underneath the canopy;

4 yellow arrows that would be down on the

5 pavement, showing the direction of the flow

6 for traffic going underneath the canopy.

7 MEMBER BAUER: You're going to

8 have them going the other way, too.

9 MR. PLUMMER: Okay.

10 MEMBER SANGHVI: Ms. Gronachan?


12 Mr. Chair.

13 I believe that this request

14 for these signs needs a little more work and

15 some tweaking, if you will. I understand

16 the purpose for your request, and I can

17 support them; but I don't think that we need

18 to conform with the rest of Sam's Clubs and

19 Walmart, with all Due respect.

20 I think that this property is

21 pretty unique and the topography and the lay

22 with Grand River and Wixom given that it is

23 the sole purpose of having this many signs

24 is for identification. However, these signs




1 also could increase or decrease safety.

2 And you have confusing writing

3 on that overhang. I think it should be

4 customer pick up, and it should be on the

5 other side. If it's truly identified

6 what -- where you want that customer to go

7 to pick up this thing, flatbed loading is --

8 I was looking for a truck. I was -- I went

9 through all those pictures. So, if I'm

10 confused, I can just imagine driving -- and

11 if you've never heard about my driving,

12 that's good -- but I was confused. I was

13 worried about a customer going through and

14 trying to figure out where they're going to

15 pick something up. Help your customer out.

16 Let them know what it is. Flatbed pick up

17 just doesn't cut it. So I would have

18 customer pick up, pure, plain and simple.

19 The other thing is, this --

20 the blue sign with the photo and the

21 Optical, and the One Hour -- the pharmacy,

22 optical, and one hour photo, can you explain

23 to me what the purpose of that sign is?

24 MR. PLUMMER: It's to identify




1 in the Sam's Club what the specialty

2 departments are in this particular Sam's

3 Club.


5 I will not be supporting that

6 sign, and the reason why is because people

7 that go to Sam's Club are repeat -- return

8 people -- business and they know that you

9 have One Hour photo; you have pharmacy. And

10 anybody that's a Sam's Club fan, they know

11 these things. I don't see a need for that.

12 I thought maybe it was like over a door

13 where -- headed them in where you could do

14 one hour pharmacy, and the one hour --

15 excuse me, one hour photo and the pharmacy

16 where you could streamline your picking up

17 your prescriptions.

18 I don't see the purpose of

19 this. It's an advertisement sign in that

20 case, and I don't feel that there's a need

21 to duly offer identification. So given the

22 fact that I won't support that, I think you

23 need to work on this customer pick up. And

24 if Walmart needs to approve that, then




1 that's fine. But, I don't know if the

2 Board -- what the Board wants to do; but, I

3 do believe that you need some signs, I just

4 need -- I think that you need to do some

5 work.

6 Thank you, Mr. Chair.

7 MEMBER SANGHVI: Mr. Fischer?

8 MEMBER FISCHER: Thank you,

9 Mr. Chairman.

10 I love cases like this. You

11 get five different options and everyone

12 likes something, doesn't like something.

13 The Board's all over the place.

14 As far as sign A, the sign on

15 the right hand side there facing Wixom Road,

16 I can see the need for that. This is a

17 large building. And the same with the exit

18 and entrance sign, (unintelligible) get

19 confused figuring out which are which. I

20 don't think I'm too dumb of a person, but

21 given the size of the building, I can

22 definitely support those.

23 And I echo what Mr. Shroyer

24 said concerning the loading area. We're




1 looking at these. We need to see what -- we

2 need to grant relief, but we need to see --

3 use as little as we can. And I think the

4 loading area avoids confusion, meets the

5 needs of the business. And so I think that

6 nothing more than loading area is needed in

7 that case. And I'll also echo Member

8 Gronachan's comments regarding sign B.

9 This is a membership type of

10 business, correct?

11 MR. PLUMMER: Yes.

12 MEMBER FISCHER: I believe that

13 the pharmacy and the optical or whatever's on

14 that sign, is something that needs to be

15 marketed. People are going to know about it when

16 they sign up to get the membership. I think it's

17 a (unintelligible), if you will. It's definitely

18 not necessary, and I don't see the practical

19 difficulty there.

20 With that said, thank you,

21 Mr. Chair.

22 MEMBER SANGHVI: You're welcome.

23 Ms. Krieger?

24 MEMBER KRIEGER: Mr. Saven has a




1 comment?

2 MR. SAVEN: Basically, it'll

3 just be a matter of interpretation on the flatbed

4 issue here. Most of you, including myself, which

5 shop at places like this, we do have a cart.

6 Maybe considered what you they call a flatbed

7 cart. (Unintelligible) load up because you're

8 buying in bulk and things of that nature, that

9 particular cart could possibly be the flatbed

10 loading area they're alluding to, possibly.

11 MR. PLUMMER: It could be.

12 MR. SAVEN: I don't know whether

13 or not we need to make the interpretation

14 (unintelligible) lot of verbiage there.

15 MEMBER SANGHVI: Anybody else?


17 MEMBER KRIEGER: (Unintelligibl

18 e) I'm sorry.

19 Another -- if the applicant

20 would be willing to table it, if you want to

21 have a more concise request, or that we

22 could deal with the sign A through D, each

23 one separately.

24 MEMBER SANGHVI: Would you like




1 more time to discuss (interposing)

2 (unintelligible?)


4 (Unintelligible) the item five, which is the

5 flatbed loading area, if that were to say

6 customer loading area or loading area,

7 whether or not that would be considered?


9 Anybody like to make a Motion?

10 MEMBER GRONACHAN: I'll make a

11 Motion.

12 In Case Number: 06-027, filed

13 by Larry D. Craighead, architect

14 representing Sam's Club, I move that we

15 approve the -- Sign A, Sign C, Sign D, Sign

16 E, with the change of customer loading area.


18 MEMBER GRONACHAN: I'm not done,

19 but thank you for your support.

20 MEMBER KRIEGER: I'm sorry. I

21 still second.


23 the Petitioner's testimony indicated that

24 this is an unusually shaped building, the



1 size of the building, and the topography,

2 along with the safety concerns.


4 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

5 The Motion has been made and

6 seconded.

7 Any further discussion? Any


9 MR. SAVEN: Just a question to

10 Alan any regard to the change (unintelligible)

11 square footage within that particular realm of, I

12 believe it was 14.19 feet. That would be okay,

13 correct?

14 MR. AMOLSCH: (Unintelligible)

15 sign, yes.

16 MR. SAVEN: (Interposing.)

17 (unintelligible.)

18 MR. AMOLSCH: Just don't make

19 it any bigger.

20 MEMBER SANGHVI: Pretty good.

21 Any further discussion?

22 MEMBER FISCHER: Is this a

23 denial of Sign B (unintelligible) separately?





1 separate.


3 MEMBER SANGHVI: Okay. Motion

4 has been made; seconded.

5 Please call the roll, please.


7 Gronachan?


9 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


11 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?


13 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?


15 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


17 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


19 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

20 six to zero.

21 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

22 e.)

23 MEMBER GRONACHAN: Now, in Case:

24 06-027, filed by Larry D. Craighead, in regards




1 to Sign B, I move that we deny the request for

2 this variance based on the fact that this would

3 be a marketing purpose, and not identification.


5 MEMBER SANGHVI: Motion has been

6 made and seconded.

7 Any discussion?

8 Member Fischer?

9 MR. SCHULTZ: Member Fischer

10 first.

11 MEMBER FISCHER: The maker of

12 the Motion could make some type of comment that

13 the Petitioner has not established a practical

14 difficulty for this sign, as well?


16 noted.

17 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

18 e) amended and seconded.

19 MR. SCHULTZ: Just a comment to

20 incorporate, if I may through the Chair, that

21 this is a destination area; and that's key to the

22 lack of practical difficulty from the

23 conversation.

24 MEMBER GRONACHAN: Based on my




1 previous comments made into the record, as the

2 lack of purpose of this sign and that it is a

3 designation location.


5 MEMBER SANGHVI: All right.

6 Will you please call the roll.


8 Gronachan?


10 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?


12 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?


14 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


16 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


18 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


20 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

21 six to zero.

22 MEMBER SANGHVI: Well, sir, with

23 (unintelligible) most of your signs have been

24 approved.




1 Please see the Building

2 Department.

3 Thank you.

4 MR. PLUMMER: Thank you very

5 much.


7 MR. PLUMMER: Thanks.



10 Moving along.

11 Moving along.

12 Next case, Case Number:

13 06-033, filed by Patrick Ziarnik at 1601

14 West Lake Drive. Mr. Ziarnik is requesting

15 two side yard setback variances for the

16 construction of a covered porch located at

17 1601 West Lake Drive.

18 He is seeking a seven foot six

19 inch north side yard setback variance and

20 also a combined total side yard variance for

21 seven feet three inches. The property is

22 zoned R-4, located on the south side of

23 Pontiac Trail and east of West Park Drive.

24 Are you Mister --




1 MR. ZIARNIK: Yes, I am, Pat

2 Ziarnik.

3 MEMBER SANGHVI: Will you please

4 be sworn in by our secretary.

5 MEMBER BAUER: Do you swear or

6 affirm to tell the truth regarding this case?

7 MR. ZIARNIK: I do.

8 MEMBER BAUER: Thank you.

9 MR. ZIARNIK: Good evening.

10 My name is Pat Ziarnik. As indicated, I

11 live at 1601 West Lake Drive. I'm here

12 tonight to request approval to construct

13 essentially a porch extension on our

14 existing porch. It involves two variances

15 that were previously described.

16 What we're really asking for

17 is an open air porch. It's nothing really

18 anymore than just a canopy that's supported

19 by two columns. And it measures eight feet

20 wide and four feet deep, just so that you

21 have an idea of what I'm talking about.

22 This doesn't show up real

23 well, but this is part of a larger addition

24 that my wife and I are putting on our house.




1 This basic addition right here, falls within

2 all the Code setback requirements and ratio

3 of building to lot size requirements and all

4 that sort of thing. So we opted to move

5 ahead with that basic construction, because

6 it didn't involve any potential variances.

7 And we've, in fact, received building

8 permits to proceed with that, and that

9 construction is underway.

10 What we're in front of the

11 Board here tonight for is to add this little

12 porch extension. And another view of this,

13 is right here. What we're looking to do on

14 the porch extension is simply extend the

15 existing porch. It's eight inches -- I'm

16 sorry, eight feet wide, four inches -- or

17 four feet deep. And it would connect to an

18 existing porch. This is an open air porch

19 right now. It's open on this side, on the

20 west side and on the north side. It's

21 enclosed. This is the entry to the house

22 right here on the -- on the east side and

23 south side.

24 We're also putting on this two




1 story addition. And the reason we're doing

2 that is my wife's mother, my mother-in-law,

3 is elderly and she's going to be moving in

4 with us. She needs daily assistance, and

5 she can't walk stairs. So we thought an

6 alternative would be to move her in our

7 house. We'd take one of our rooms; expand

8 it a little bit and add a bathroom and a

9 walk-in closet. You in effect create a

10 mother-in-law's suite, to enable her to live

11 in a more accommodating manner.

12 So that's the reason we moved

13 ahead with the basic addition. The -- once

14 again, all we're asking the Board's

15 permission to do is to build this little

16 porch extension. It's just an open air

17 porch; just simply a roof canopy supported

18 by two columns.

19 And the hardships we've got

20 are really two. First of all is the

21 narrowness of our lot. We're on Wall Lake.

22 Our lot is only 45 feet wide, so virtually

23 any kind of construction we do is going to

24 run (unintelligible) some of the setback




1 requirements and so forth. So we've got

2 that issue; but probably more importantly is

3 the placement of our house on the lot line.

4 At one point, effectively this

5 point right here in the house, we're inches

6 from the north lot line. And so you can see

7 that any (unintelligible) construction we do

8 is going to require variances basically.

9 We've tried to comply with the Code

10 requirements, but because of the placement

11 of the house and because of the narrowness

12 of the lot, it's virtually impossible to do

13 that.

14 Now, I guess at some point

15 there were some objections received, and I'd

16 like to speak to that. It's been more

17 frustrating to us, because apparently

18 there's been concerted underground efforts

19 to undermine(sic) (ph) our attempts here.

20 And what I will tell you is my wife and I

21 have spent considerable time -- we spent --

22 weeks ago, we sent out notices to all of our

23 neighbors within 300 feet of our property.

24 We explained what we were




1 trying to do; why we were doing it; provided

2 them with elevations and drawings, and we

3 solicited their input. We said, please, if

4 you have any comments, questions, concerns,

5 get back to us and we'll try to address

6 those. And we didn't receive any comments

7 from anybody or the comments we received

8 were all positive.

9 And in addition to sending out

10 notices to all of our neighbors, we

11 contacted many of them personally. We

12 contacted our immediate neighbors to north

13 and west and the south. Spoke to them. We

14 were assured that they had no problems with

15 any of the proposed construction. And we

16 found out yesterday that one of the

17 neighbors who originally said she had no

18 problems with this whatsoever, is now

19 saying, she has -- she objects to our going

20 ahead with this.

21 And furthermore, we found out

22 from Robin earlier this evening that, in

23 fact, 4:00, today the Board received

24 three -- four more objections to our




1 proceeding with this. And so it's very

2 frustrating for us. We've done whatever we

3 could to alert our neighbors as to what we

4 were doing and why we were doing it; and

5 asking their help and their support; and

6 asking them to bring any issue to us. And

7 we didn't receive any comments until just

8 recently.

9 With respect to the one

10 neighbor who has -- that we know has voiced

11 a concern, I will tell you that we spoke

12 with her before we even submitted a variance

13 request. We talked to her weeks ago. We

14 explained what we were doing. She assured

15 us that she was in complete support of this.

16 I have talked to her several times in the

17 intervening weeks. At each time she

18 indicated she had no problem whatsoever with

19 our plans, and in fact, as recently as this

20 past Saturday, she assured me that there was

21 no problems with anything we were doing, and

22 she was in complete support of it.

23 And then I learn surprisingly

24 yesterday afternoon, this very neighbor,




1 that she was, in fact, objecting to our

2 going forward with this porch enclosure or

3 porch expansion. And, so, obviously, I'm

4 frustrated and -- I'm just frustrated with

5 the situation. We talked with the one

6 neighbor that voiced a concern to us. And

7 we talked probably 20 minutes or a half

8 hour; weren't able to resolve our

9 differences. So we -- the wife and I

10 decided to come before the Board; didn't

11 have enough time to plan any additional --

12 there wasn't anything else we could do. We

13 didn't have time to look at other creative

14 solutions to the potential problem.

15 As we understand it, there are

16 problems expressed relative to the Fire

17 Code, the Novi Fire Code. And I don't know

18 what the Fire Code provides. What our

19 neighbor has advised us is that you must

20 have ten feet between your property line

21 and -- between the two houses, and we have

22 that. We've got 12 feet between our

23 neighbor's house and this proposed porch

24 expansion. So I don't see that as an issue.




1 MEMBER SANGHVI: Are you still

2 continuing?

3 MR. ZIARNIK: Oh, yeah, if I

4 can.

5 MEMBER GRONACHAN: I'd just like

6 a point of order here. I would like to hear what

7 the objections are first, before the Petitioner

8 goes on and on about it. I think he's putting

9 the cart before the horse. It might speed things

10 up.

11 MEMBER SANGHVI: You made your

12 case already (unintelligible) sir?

13 MR. ZIARNIK: Well, I have

14 some additional comments, but

15 (unintelligible) going to hear the

16 objections.

17 MEMBER SANGHVI: (unintelligibl

18 e.)

19 MR. ZIARNIK: I assume you

20 have those.

21 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

22 e) we don't know that, okay. We'll come to that

23 in a moment.

24 Does anyone in the audience




1 here wish to address this Board regarding

2 this case?

3 Seeing none, I'll tell you

4 that (interposing) (unintelligible.)

5 MR. ZIARNIK: (Interposing)

6 can I -- can I -- excuse me. Can I just say

7 one final comment?

8 MEMBER SANGHVI: Please hold

9 your horses for a moment, please.

10 MR. ZIARNIK: Sure.

11 MEMBER SANGHVI: 65 notices are

12 mailed; six approvals and four objections.

13 I think I'll ask the secretary

14 to (unintelligible.)

15 MEMBER BAUER: One objection.

16 It's always been our position that any

17 variance proposal that request a side yard

18 setback of less than five feet be denied.

19 House and permanent structure are becoming

20 increasingly too close together. In the

21 Fire Code is ten feet between structures

22 then putting the difference between

23 neighbors is the only reasonable solution.

24 We've had fires in the neighborhood




1 recently, and this is a concern for us.

2 Another objection. We are

3 objecting to the north side yard setback

4 request to build within two and a half feet

5 of the property line. (unintelligible)

6 consider requests for anything under five

7 feet, because of the ten foot Fire Code

8 between the houses. And ten feet

9 (unintelligible) should always be shared

10 equally between property owners.

11 Objection. Fire Code

12 determines a minimum of ten feet between the

13 homes. This must be distributed evenly

14 between properties, and no more than a

15 minimum variance of five feet per house to a

16 lot line. (Unintelligible) owner to

17 (unintelligible) six inches place a burden

18 of (unintelligible) of -- on the neighboring

19 owner. This is not only unfair, but

20 (unintelligible) violates the property of

21 the neighbor with -- looks like seven feet

22 four inches.

23 Objection. I'm objecting to

24 the setback on my side of the home because




1 it violates the Fire Safety Code of five

2 feet on each side of the lot line, or ten

3 feet between houses. I will not approve two

4 and a half feet, but I will approve a five

5 foot setback; if they would like to move the

6 porch over two and a half feet.

7 Approval. We own the property

8 directly to the south. We fully support the

9 additions and request the Board approve

10 these variances.

11 Approval. I fully support

12 this request for variances. Pat and Pam

13 communicated with me and other neighbors on

14 this request and asked for our input. This

15 request (unintelligible) perfectly

16 reasonable continuing the improvements

17 within the neighborhood.

18 Approval. We fully support

19 the requested variances. This property is

20 always well maintained, and the proposed

21 addition will enhance the neighborhood.

22 Approval. We have no

23 objections to the proposed request. The

24 yard setback due to the (unintelligible.)




1 This is a very old neighborhood. We -- some

2 of the properties have only one foot

3 setbacks.

4 Approval. Pat and Pam are

5 excellent neighbors. I'm sure that their

6 additions will be done tastefully, and will

7 add to the renovation in our neighborhood.

8 Approval.

9 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

10 Building Department?

11 MR. SAVEN: The audience first?

12 Just a couple issues that I

13 want to bring to the Board's attention.

14 Number one, as it was brought out, this is

15 an open air porch. This is not an

16 enclosure. This is an open air porch.

17 Number two, the existing building sits very

18 close to the property line, as it exists

19 right now. And Number three, there was a

20 fire in the general vicinity where there was

21 a loss of life. Based upon that concern, I

22 can see how the neighbors can have a issue

23 in regards to the Fire Codes.

24 Fire Codes are presented based




1 upon the issue of how close you do get to

2 the property line, not (unintelligible) to

3 the distance between the buildings; but

4 actually getting to that property line. And

5 there are things that you can do to restrict

6 the spread of flames by virtue of adding a

7 little more protection (unintelligible)

8 maybe overhang (unintelligible) construction

9 issue that needs to be looked at so the

10 spread of fire will not be there.

11 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

12 (Unintelligible.)

13 Member Gronachan?


15 member Chair.

16 I have no problem with this

17 request and I can support it. Why I wanted

18 to save you some time and effort is because

19 I kind of thought what the objections were

20 going to be, so I wanted to hear them out.

21 I think what the residents are missing is

22 that these are extremely narrow lots. And

23 configurations and the lay of houses are

24 rather difficult. You can't pick up the




1 house and move it over. It's already on the

2 property line.

3 I don't feel that adding this

4 porch is going to increase or decrease --

5 increase a fire hazard or decrease any

6 safety. Given the comments that Mr. Saven

7 said about aiding additional protection on

8 the overhang to cut down the spread of

9 fire -- I know that there's other building

10 things that can be done. I'll leave that to

11 the experts. But based on the information

12 that we have in front of us, and your

13 testimony I would be in support of this

14 request.

15 Thank you.

16 MEMBER SANGHVI: Mr. Fischer?

17 MEMBER FISCHER: Thank you,

18 Mr. Chair.

19 Mr. Saven, is it part of the

20 building -- the Michigan Building Code or

21 whatever that materials are used -- what are

22 the overlying factors?

23 MR. SAVEN: The overlying issues

24 are opening protectives, opening protectives as




1 they get closer to the property line. So that if

2 there was a window or something along

3 (unintelligible) particular lines -- that

4 depending on how much square footage are involved

5 with those openings (unintelligible) restricted

6 for these openings (unintelligible) based upon

7 how close (unintelligible) to the property line.

8 The closer you get to the

9 property line, the more protected material

10 that you use; whether it's fire retardant

11 treated lumbar or something along those

12 lines. These things are options that

13 builders or owners may have at his deposal.


15 And will those be mandated by

16 some other (interposing) (unintelligible.)

17 MR. SAVEN: In this particular

18 case with the overhang (unintelligible) brings it

19 on back to that covered porch area. It's only a

20 small porch. I would assume two sheets of

21 plywood are probably going to end up being what's

22 going to be used?

23 MR. ZIARNIK: I was going to

24 say that we're perfectly willing to do that.




1 That's not an issue.

2 MEMBER FISCHER: I just want to

3 make sure that there's some type of other entity

4 or State regulation or something like that.

5 I would have to echo Member

6 Gronachan's comments for the second case in

7 a row, which always bothers me.

8 I want to commend you for

9 working with what seems like the majority of

10 your neighbors. We always like to hear

11 that. That's very important to us. And

12 especially when they get up and root for

13 you. That's quite the accomplishment. And

14 what confuses me about some of the other

15 comments is that this looks like it's just a

16 complete extension of the current porch.

17 Do you know by chance, the

18 current porch, how close that is to the lot

19 line?

20 MR. ZIARNIK: It's about two

21 feet six inches, which is what the extension

22 would be.

23 MEMBER FISCHER: Okay. And then

24 that's what it looks like on the map I'm looking




1 at; therefore, it doesn't seem like it's much

2 more of a variance request than what's currently

3 there. And also there's a north corner, so I

4 guess it would be the house.

5 How close is that to the lot

6 line?

7 MR. ZIARNIK: If you're

8 talking about from here to the lot line,

9 it's ten feet.

10 Oh, that. It's essentially

11 right on the lot line. I mean, it maybe a

12 few inches off the lot line, but that's

13 about it. It's essentially right there.

14 MEMBER FISCHER: I think this

15 request is quite minimal, given the fact that the

16 existing porch is that close, as well as other

17 areas, which are closer. I think there's one

18 other thing? Given obviously, the narrowness of

19 the lot. It's always a tough area to work in.

20 Can you explain a little more

21 the porch. It's not enclosed. What

22 exactly -- will it be just an overhang?

23 MR. ZIARNIK: It's simply an

24 overhang, you know, that extends from the




1 existing second floor, and it will be

2 supported by two columns. And that's --

3 it's -- you know, it's eight feet wide,

4 which is the width of the current porch, and

5 it extends out four feet. It's really only

6 decorative. I mean, the only purpose is so

7 that the addition doesn't look as boxy as it

8 otherwise would. It makes it a little more

9 attractive for ourselves and for the

10 neighbors.

11 MEMBER FISCHER: So given those

12 comments that I made, I would be willing to

13 support this case, as well.

14 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

15 Ms. Krieger?

16 MEMBER KRIEGER: I am also in

17 support (unintelligible) previous speakers, that

18 the applicant is willing to construction the

19 (unintelligible) expansion for fire protection,

20 that he said he would do that; and regarding the

21 narrowness of the lot, and that it's also not

22 going to be enclosed.

23 Thank you.

24 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.




1 I just wanted --

2 Mr. Shroyer, go ahead.

3 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you,

4 Mr. Chair.

5 I just wanted to ask if,

6 indeed, this was denied, what are your

7 plans?

8 MR. ZIARNIK: You know, if it

9 was denied, I assume we'd just live with it

10 as it is. It's going to look like an

11 obvious addition, but the only other

12 alternative I can see would be to completely

13 reorient, you know, the entry to the house,

14 and that would be prohibitively expensive.

15 I would -- just my wife forced me to do it.

16 I wouldn't do it. I don't think we have too

17 many other alternatives, given where the

18 house is.

19 MEMBER SHROYER: That's what I

20 was trying to look at. It's about 12 foot wide

21 and the (unintelligible) four foot wide.

22 (unintelligible) try to move it over to meet the

23 requirement, then you'd really have to re-center

24 the front door. And that really --




1 MR. ZIARNIK: We'd have to

2 engage architects and it would be very

3 expensive; and I just could not support it

4 myself.

5 MEMBER SHROYER: Well, to me,

6 along with the new addition that you have in

7 the front of the house, to me it's building

8 up the property values of all of the homes

9 in this area. And now if your house wasn't

10 basically touching the side yard already,

11 you know, that might be a different issue.

12 But you've already gone over as far as you

13 can. (Unintelligible) you can't pick up the

14 house and move it over six feet or whatever.

15 So, I guess I have to agree

16 with my previous cohorts in crime here, and

17 I will be supporting the Motion.

18 Thank you, Mr. Chair.

19 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you,

20 Mr. Shroyer.

21 Mr. Fischer?

22 MEMBER FISCHER: I would move

23 that in Case Number: 06-033, filed by Patrick

24 Ziarnik at 1601 West Lake Drive, that this Board




1 approve the variances requested; given that the

2 Petitioner has established practical difficulty,

3 and that he has shown the minimum variance

4 necessary have -- will be used, given the current

5 existing porch.

6 The size and configuration of

7 the lot also proves that there's practical

8 difficulty, and that substantial justice to

9 this property owner and neighbors has been

10 shown with the conditions to -- the comments

11 that the Petitioner made about fire

12 protection, are part of the Motion in the

13 record.


15 MEMBER BAUER: Second.

16 MEMBER SANGHVI: A Motion has

17 been made and seconded.

18 Any further discussion?

19 Seeing none, please call the

20 roll.

21 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?



24 Gronachan?





2 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?


4 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


6 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


8 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


10 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

11 six to zero.

12 MR. ZIARNIK: Thank you.

13 MEMBER SANGHVI: Your variance

14 has been approved. Please see the Building

15 Department.




19 We'll move on to our next Case

20 Number: 06-034, filed by On the Border

21 Restaurant at 21091 Haggerty Road.

22 Is the applicant here?

23 MR. KUBERACKI: Mak Kuberacki

24 for the On the Border of Novi.




1 MEMBER SANGHVI: Would you raise

2 your right hand and be sworn.

3 MEMBER BAUER: Do you swear the

4 truth regarding case 06-034?


6 MEMBER BAUER: Thank you.


8 name's Mark Kuberacki (unintelligible) On

9 the Border Novi, located at 21091 Haggerty

10 on Eight Mile in the High Point Shopping

11 Center. We just want to get out

12 (unintelligible) request our approval for

13 Cinco de Mayo party this Friday from 2:00

14 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.

15 MEMBER SANGHVI: Are you done?

16 MR. KUBERACKI: What's that?

17 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

18 Anybody in the audience that

19 would like to make a comment about this

20 case?

21 Seeing none, Building

22 Department?

23 MR. SAVEN: Oh, yeah.

24 Just to bring it to the




1 Board's attention, the Cinco de Mayo at On

2 the Border was previously approved by my

3 office on several occasions in the past,

4 which was based upon the fact there was --

5 there was an issue regarding one thing in

6 particular and that was charging admission,

7 okay. At that time, there was fund -- I

8 believe you guys did fundraisers at that

9 time, and we went through all the steps,

10 police, fire, all the necessary requirements

11 for food source and things of this

12 (unintelligible) your liquor license

13 requirement and everything else.

14 And we're doing the same thing

15 right now. The thing that triggers this

16 thing more so than not, I'm making myself

17 explicitly clear today and now. If you're

18 going to charge for this particular issue;

19 you're going to have over 200 attendees, you

20 will go to City Council next year; is that

21 understood?

22 MR. KUBERACKI: Yes, sir.

23 MR. SAVEN: Okay. I just want to

24 make that as a point. That's one of the things




1 that we have to deal with with a temporary use

2 permit. And I can handle certain things within

3 my Department, but when things go by definition

4 and Ordinance, it becomes a very difficult

5 situation. And this particular case I'm bringing

6 it to the Board, timing purposes, and the things

7 that were done in the past (unintelligible)

8 things have changed, so.

9 If you charge admission, over

10 200 attendees, you'll go to City Council,

11 okay?

12 MR. KUBERACKI: Yes, sir.

13 MR. SAVEN: Thank you.

14 MEMBER SANGHVI: Very good.

15 I'd like to mention that we

16 had 12 notices were mailed out; there was

17 one approval and zero objections.

18 Ms. Gronachan?


20 I figure it's my last meeting,

21 what the heck, you know. I'm going to miss

22 the Cinco de Mayo party though. You know,

23 I'm going to have to cancel the move.

24 Mr. Saven, this has gone on




1 for -- consistently for several years?

2 MR. SAVEN: That is correct.

3 MEMBER GRONACHAN: And there has

4 been no violations, no incidences?

5 MR. SAVEN: I have not received

6 any notices for violations or been -- anything

7 been brought to my attention (unintelligible.)


9 parking problems; no -- none of that?

10 MR. SAVEN: None that I'm aware

11 of.


13 Then given that the Border has

14 been --

15 How long have you been in Novi

16 now?

17 MR. KUBERACKI: Eight years.

18 MEMBER GRONACHAN: Eight years.

19 -- been a long time business

20 in Novi, and there has been no history of

21 any problems with this particular event at

22 the business, and that Mr. Saven put the

23 fear of God in you now, because charging

24 over 200 people, you'll be hearing have




1 somebody. I can be in complete support of

2 this.

3 Thank you, Mr. Chair.

4 MEMBER SANGHVI: Mr. Shroyer?

5 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you,

6 Mr. Chair.

7 I'll go ahead and make a

8 Motion in Case Number 06-034, filed by Mark

9 Kuberacki?

10 MR. KUBERACKI: Yes, sir.


12 Border Restaurant, I move to approve the request

13 for a special use approval to permit the

14 placement of a 40 foot by 100 foot tent for Cinco

15 de Mayo on May 5th, whereas this was approved in

16 2004 and 2005 without any significant

17 (unintelligible); and that the applicant has been

18 proactive in hiring (unintelligible) police

19 officers to ensure patron and pedestrian safety.

20 Also, the applicant has a full

21 understanding of his agreement with the

22 statements made by the Building Department.


24 MEMBER SANGHVI: All right.





1 Go ahead, Mr. Bauer.


3 (Unintelligible) liquor license permit, says

4 100 by 70 (unintelligible) 100 by 40.

5 MR. SAVEN: Just an additional

6 issue, you need to obtain the appropriate

7 permits for electrical and (unintelligible)

8 prior to the opening.

9 MR. KUBERACKI: Yes, sir.

10 MEMBER FISCHER: (Unintelligibl

11 e) how big is your tent going to be?

12 MR. KUBERACKI: The tent

13 itself is a structure of 40 by 100. The

14 State of Michigan when I applied for the

15 license had (unintelligible) overflow of --

16 for -- just overflow on the side, that's

17 additional about 30 feet. So they needed to

18 know for the liquor license if we had an

19 overflow, and it came out to be 70 feet

20 altogether.

21 MEMBER BAUER: All right.

22 MEMBER FISCHER: All right.

23 Just a friendly amendment or something --

24 discussion, are we going to put a time on




1 Saturday that they need to have this thing down

2 by?

3 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

4 e.)

5 MR. SAVEN: It should be

6 immediately after; (unintelligible) difficult

7 situation, but immediately after.

8 MR. KUBERACKI: Yes. It's

9 actually -- I do have it set up by 9:00 a.m.

10 the next morning.

11 MEMBER FISCHER: Oh, okay.

12 I didn't expect you to do it

13 that night or anything. I just didn't want

14 it out there Saturday, and all of a sudden

15 I'd be out there on a Saturday night

16 drinking away.

17 Thank you, Mr. Chair.

18 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

19 Please call the roll.

20 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?



23 Gronachan?





1 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?


3 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?


5 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


7 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


9 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

10 six to zero.

11 MEMBER SANGHVI: Your permit has

12 been granted. (Unintelligible) the Building

13 Department.

14 MR. KUBERACKI: Thank you.



17 Case: 06-036, filed by Garnish Restaurant 25875

18 Novi Road. And Garnish Restaurant is requesting

19 one sign variance to allow placement of an

20 additional wall sign at 25875 Novi Road, Suite

21 170.

22 Please state your name.

23 MR. CURZ(ph): Jason Curz,

24 Garnish Restaurant.




1 MEMBER BAUER: Would you raise

2 your right hand, please.

3 Do you swear or affirm to tell

4 the truth regarding case, 06-036?

5 MR. CURZ: I do.

6 MEMBER BAUER: Thank you, sir.

7 MEMBER SANGHVI: Please proceed.

8 MR. CURZ: Okay.

9 Good evening. I'm Jason Curz

10 on behalf of Garnish Restaurant. When we

11 first started as a franchise restaurant, we

12 looked at a lot of cities around. We chose

13 Novi because we were excited about the

14 potential growth. And before I get into why

15 I'm here tonight, I'd just like to thank the

16 City. They've been exceptionally wonderful

17 to work with as far as getting all of our

18 permits everything else, as for as for the

19 building.

20 The reason I'm here tonight is

21 because, I'm requesting a sign variance at

22 the City Center Plaza. Garnish Restaurant

23 is located on an end cap corner of the

24 Plaza, facing both Novi Road and Grand




1 River. After speaking with my partners and

2 they've spoke with Alan, it was stated that

3 typically, corner lots -- hard corner lots

4 get two signs without having to apply for

5 variances. Obviously, an example is the

6 Fidelity Building across the street on the

7 southeast corner of Novi Road and Grand

8 River.

9 Our position on that shopping

10 plaza, because it's the end of the Plaza --

11 which is what we did choose -- it is behind

12 a gas station; and obviously the landscaping

13 shopping plaza. The reason we're requesting

14 the sign variances is because of the

15 hardship we will face based on the fact that

16 we are losing the visibility of any

17 potential customers heading south on Novi

18 Road.

19 The reason for that is, the

20 speed limit being 45 miles an hour. By the

21 time they can see our sign off the road,

22 they've already blown by the entrance to the

23 plaza. Obviously, we have the visibility

24 from the south side, but we are looking to




1 place a sign so that anybody on the Grand

2 River side, heading east or west can see

3 that we do, in fact, have a restaurant

4 there.

5 Because visibility in any

6 restaurant -- because a restaurant,

7 obviously, is an impulse business, versus a

8 Sam's Club or destination -- we feel

9 obviously that that would impact our sales,

10 if obviously our customer base can't see

11 that we're there until they pass us.

12 Because of that, we are

13 requesting a 5O foot -- 50 square foot sign

14 erected on the side facing Grand River

15 Street. Obviously, the allowance goes up 64

16 feet. And all we're looking for -- since

17 obviously it's not a marketing ploy -- is

18 just a 50 foot sign.

19 MEMBER SANGHVI: You done?

20 MR. CURZ: That's it.

21 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

22 MR. CURZ: Thank you.

23 MEMBER SANGHVI: Would anyone in

24 the audience like to address the Board regarding




1 this case?

2 Seeing none, there were 49

3 notices mailed; zero approvals, zero

4 objections.

5 Building Department?

6 MR. AMOLSCH: No comment, sir.

7 MEMBER SANGHVI: No comment from

8 there.

9 Board, any comment?

10 Go ahead, take the lead.


12 I have no problem with this

13 request. I --

14 Alan, what is the standard

15 size of a sign? Just refresh my memory

16 for -- for the first building sign? Is it

17 40 square feet?

18 MR. AMOLSCH: Those TC

19 (unintelligible) 1.25 square feet per lineal

20 foot to a maximum of 65 square feet.

21 Different than any other part of the City.


23 don't have a problem with this is because you're

24 right. By the time you go by this building, you




1 can't see it. And it's -- given the location of

2 this particular -- your store front, given the

3 location of your store front, I think it is

4 important to have it on -- where it is, and so

5 that people can see it. A lot of times when

6 you're driving down Novi road it is very busy,

7 it's very congested. You can't catch what

8 businesses are in there.

9 So I think you did a very good

10 job on your presentation, and we always

11 appreciate positive comments to the

12 City of -- regarding the City of Novi, and

13 I think you should tell all your business

14 partners, as well.

15 Thank you.

16 That's all.

17 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you,

18 Ms. Gronachan.

19 Anybody else?

20 Mr. Shroyer?

21 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you,

22 Mr. Chair.

23 I agree with the previous

24 comments. I do have a couple questions.




1 First of all, I assume all the signs that

2 are in the windows are going to go away?

3 MR. CURZ: That's right.

4 MEMBER SHROYER: It's kind of

5 overkill (unintelligible) checked out the site.

6 You know it's there now.

7 Driving along Grand River

8 Road, (unintelligible) indicate this was

9 somebody (unintelligible) restaurant's

10 there. I still wouldn't know there's a

11 restaurant. I think it might be a grocery

12 store or a what-not shop or something.

13 Where does it say restaurant or food or

14 anything along that line? I don't know --

15 is this a franchise?

16 MR. CURZ: It's a start-up

17 franchise, yes.

18 MEMBER SHROYER: I wonder if

19 their marketing department has carefully looked

20 at this. Because if people don't know that

21 Garnish is a restaurant, they're not going to

22 stop to eat anyway. I think most of your

23 advertisement is going to be through word of

24 mouth or somebody from the City goes there for




1 lunch and starts telling their friend or

2 whatever, and then you start getting more and

3 more business and repeat business.

4 One of the questions I did

5 want to ask, if I may, Mr. Amolsch, am I

6 correct in remembering there's not a sign

7 (unintelligible) side of (unintelligible?)

8 MR. AMOLSCH: The sign

9 (unintelligible.)

10 MEMBER SHROYER: (Unintelligibl

11 e.)

12 MR. AMOLSCH: Oh, no, there's

13 not. They only have one sign.


15 basically a corner lot, as well, at the other end

16 of the complex.

17 MR. AMOLSCH: It's not a

18 corner lot. It's a multi-tenant building,

19 and doesn't have (unintelligible.)

20 MEMBER SHROYER: I understand.

21 (Unintelligible) a thoroughfare, as well. They

22 may come back and look for a sign on that side so

23 people can see (unintelligible) Panera Bread.

24 I'm not opposed to this. I




1 was just asking this question because

2 (unintelligible) even with the sign there.

3 Just food for thought.

4 I don't have anything else,

5 Mr. Chair.

6 MEMBER SANGHVI: Any further


8 Making a Motion?

9 MEMBER FISCHER: (Unintelligibl

10 e) further comments.

11 It is the corner store of the

12 multi-tenant building, correct?

13 MR. CURZ: Correct.

14 MEMBER FISCHER: And how many

15 doors do you have?

16 MR. CURZ: We currently have

17 two.

18 MEMBER FISCHER: One would be

19 under each of the signs; is that correct?

20 MR. CURZ: Yes, that is

21 correct.

22 MEMBER FISCHER: Given those

23 facts, I would be willing to support and probably

24 make a Motion.




1 Just one quick comment on the

2 verbiage. I would agree that you might not

3 know exactly what it is, but my philosophy

4 has always been for the Board to look at the

5 case and not necessarily what exactly the

6 Petitioner is trying to put up there. And

7 that's -- it's up to them. I'm concerned

8 about the size. I'm concerned about the

9 esthetic looks and the safety of the

10 residents.

11 And so that's why I'm not too

12 concerned about what they want to put up

13 there as long as it matches my tie.

14 Given that, I'd like to make a

15 Motion in Case Number: 06-036, filed by

16 Derrick Stein, Garnish Restaurant, that we

17 approve the variance has requested, given

18 Petitioner has established a practical

19 difficulty, and for identification reasons.

20 That's it.

21 MEMBER BAUER: Second.

22 MEMBER SANGHVI: Seconded.

23 Any other comments?

24 Please call the roll.




1 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?


3 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?



6 Gronachan?


8 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


10 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


12 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


14 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

15 six to zero.

16 MR. CURZ: Thank you.

17 MEMBER SANGHVI: Your variance

18 has been granted. Go and see the Building

19 Department.

20 Thank you.

21 MEMBER FISCHER: Good luck.



24 Case is 06-037, filed by Beaner's Coffee at 31208




1 Beck Road, Shoppes at the Trail Plaza.

2 (Unintelligible) state your

3 name and address and be sworn in by our

4 secretary.

5 MS. KOZINSKI: Jenene

6 Kozinski, the owner of Beaner's Coffee,

7 31208 Beck Road.

8 MEMBER BAUER: Would you raise

9 your right hand.

10 Do you swear or affirm to tell

11 the truth regarding Case 06-037?

12 MS. KOZINSKI: Yes, I do.

13 MEMBER BAUER: Thank you.

14 MS. KOZINSKI: Thank you.

15 I'm here to ask the Board for

16 a temporary use permit for outdoor setting

17 in front of my coffee shop. I'm asking to

18 be allowed to put three to four tables out

19 in front of the store. They're a temporary

20 nature to be brought in nightly

21 (unintelligible.) And I'm also asking for

22 a number of chairs to be seated at each

23 table, as much as the City will allow me to

24 do.




1 Mr. Saven has visited the

2 location and as I told him, I will put in as

3 many as you will allow me to put in; no more

4 than four tables. If it's three, it's

5 three. And I will place them where you want

6 me to place them, as long as they're, you

7 know, according to Code, nowhere close to

8 the curb where the traffic is flowing.

9 There are -- there is an ample amount of

10 area in front of the building.

11 Forgive my crude pictures, but

12 you can see the brick area, that's where I'm

13 proposing to place the tables. And

14 unfortunately, (unintelligible) you can see

15 the extension of the curb and how far is

16 goes down. But there's plenty of space. I

17 know that some of the issues with placing

18 outdoor furniture at this building

19 (unintelligible) with the canopy and

20 placement of the furniture under the canopy,

21 I'm not proposing to do that. The canopy

22 doesn't even extend in front of my store.

23 So that's not something that I'm looking to

24 do.




1 And I presume at some point

2 the landlord is going to have a tenant

3 neighboring me who wouldn't want my

4 furniture under there any way. So that's

5 not what I anticipate doing. I just hope to

6 have furniture surrounding the tree bed; all

7 very tasteful furniture; four tables,

8 aluminum, 31 inches wide. The umbrellas are

9 hunter green, no logos; no big B on there.

10 Not to worry about that.

11 My hardship is, at this pint,

12 nowadays, the average coffee shop consumer

13 does anticipate, does expect to see outdoor

14 seating. They want to -- there's two types

15 of customers in a coffee shop. The kind

16 that are coming in to grab a cup of coffee

17 on their way to work; the other one wants to

18 sit there; (unintelligible) on the lap top

19 for awhile; work on his homework from

20 school, whatever it maybe, and they'd like

21 to be able to sit outside. And there's not

22 a day that guess by since the weather has

23 turned, I don't have a customer coming up to

24 me, when are you going to get outdoor




1 seating.

2 I have girls putting out a

3 blanket on the patio when I come to work

4 every day, sitting outside. So I'm trying

5 to start up in the City. Beaner's is a

6 chain, but not really well-known in Novi. I

7 do have those struggles. And it would be a

8 further struggle for me not to have outdoor

9 seating. That's what they expect.

10 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

11 Does anyone in the audience

12 wish to address the Board regarding this

13 case?

14 Not seeing anyone, there were

15 16 notices mailed; zero approvals, zero

16 objections.

17 Building Department?

18 MR. SAVEN: I met Ms. Kozinski

19 the other day and we went over the areas

20 where the placement of these particular

21 tables would be. She does have ample enough

22 room. It's no different than the adjacent

23 building which (unintelligible) a variance

24 for I believe about a month ago or a month




1 or two ago; same principal, where all the

2 applicants in this area are aware that they

3 cannot have tables underneath the canopy.

4 (Unintelligible) concerns regarding

5 (unintelligible) of this nature, based on

6 the use of that building and also

7 construction of the building.

8 So what she proposed seems to

9 be quite adequate for what she intends to

10 do. (Unintelligible) keep it away

11 (unintelligible) follow the same procedures.

12 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you, sir.

13 (Unintelligible) Mr. Fischer?

14 MEMBER FISCHER: Mr. Saven, in

15 this type of case, can you explain to me exactly

16 why this typically comes to us in a very

17 simple --

18 MR. SAVEN: (Unintelligible)

19 it's a use not permitted in this particular -- it

20 is an outdoor application, and everything's

21 supposed to be enclosed within a building.


23 makes much more sense. I couldn't agree more. I

24 think everybody expects to be able to sit outside




1 now.

2 My only concern is with table

3 number four.

4 Don't know if you have

5 pictures, by chance, with you?

6 MS. KOZINSKI: I do. And I

7 know you're concerned. Mr. Saven had the

8 same concern. This was the one closest to

9 the north curb, right. And we'd talked

10 about maybe either eliminating that or

11 placing it on the other side.

12 MR. SAVEN: That's correct.

13 MEMBER FISCHER: Yeah, I think

14 if it was almost near number one and two, that

15 would be fine. I have absolutely no problem with

16 this at all.

17 You will take care of

18 (unintelligible) compliance?

19 MR. SAVEN: Absolutely.

20 (Unintelligible) accessibility to the building,

21 making sure we have accessibility from the

22 parking lot (unintelligible) entrance,

23 (unintelligible) the walk area and all those

24 issues were discussed with the applicant.




1 They're well aware of it.


3 I would --

4 MEMBER SANGHVI: Any comments?

5 MEMBER FISCHER: -- make a

6 Motion in this case, Number: 06-037, filed by

7 Jenene Kozinski of Beaner's Coffee to approve

8 this case as submitted.

9 Would it be applicable,

10 Mr. Attorney, to put anything -- I know you

11 don't like continuing jurisdiction, but

12 anything giving Mr. Saven the ability to

13 move things around, take way a table, if

14 necessary.

15 MR. SCHULTZ: Through the Chair.

16 I think that would be entirely

17 appropriate (unintelligible) duties as the

18 Building Official to make sure that

19 (unintelligible) compliance.

20 MEMBER FISCHER: As a condition

21 of this variance request, I would include that

22 Mr. Saven does have jurisdiction to comply with

23 access rights and other compliance issues. This

24 would be for dates May 3rd, 2006 through November




1 30th, 2006.


3 MEMBER SANGHVI: May I make an

4 observation?

5 MEMBER FISCHER: I'd love for

6 you to.

7 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

8 e.)

9 MEMBER FISCHER: Yes. Mr. Saven

10 or (unintelligible.)

11 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

12 e) going downtown looking (unintelligible.)

13 MEMBER FISCHER: An official of

14 the Building Department given the direction from

15 Mr. Saven.



18 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

19 Yes, Mr. Shroyer?

20 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you,

21 Mr. Chair.

22 Mr. Schultz, if I may, there's

23 probably six, eight, maybe as many as ten

24 locations in this City that may be looking




1 at similar type activity. Where do we stand

2 in regard to consistency, and should we try

3 to adopt something or should we try to set

4 up -- set guidelines even to the point of

5 the dates that (unintelligible) requested

6 the seating I believe are different than the

7 dates whether granted a couple weeks ago or

8 couple months ago in the previous case.

9 Help me out here.

10 MR. SCHULTZ: Through the Chair.

11 I guess we kind of avoid

12 having the ZBA adopt consistent rules and

13 things like that in a formal way. It's

14 obviously important to be consistent in your

15 decisions, but each case is a little bit

16 different; each case has different physical

17 characteristics; each owner has different

18 needs in terms of when to have seating like

19 this.

20 I think, you know, there are a

21 number of these, and they seem to come kind

22 of regularly. It's always (unintelligible)

23 looking -- to have long term set goals and

24 policies. You do it in the Ordinance,




1 rather than here at the table. So, I think

2 maybe we can (unintelligible) it came up and

3 see if the Planning Committee wants to take

4 a look at the Ordinance for outdoor seating.

5 (Unintelligible) policy (unintelligible)

6 start there, rather than here.

7 MEMBER SHROYER: I have the same

8 issue (unintelligible) come up later, in regard

9 to outdoor sales, (unintelligible) Home Depot

10 (unintelligible.)

11 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

12 Yes, Mr. Saven?

13 MR. SAVEN: In a general

14 comment, an issue like this -- one of the things

15 that Board in the past (unintelligible) the fact

16 that -- one, to see how the business did operate,

17 was it's kept neat and clean in an orderly

18 fashion at all times. (Unintelligible) what the

19 Ordinance was and not try to take advantage of

20 the situation for more than or whatever. And

21 that, so-called continuing jurisdiction, have a

22 look-see, make sure that things were okay.

23 We set it up on principal of

24 one year, two years, three years, four




1 years, based upon how well the business did;

2 and looking at this as an incentive to keep

3 things in an orderly fashion. I thought

4 that worked pretty well over the period of

5 time. And, yes, I do agree with you. We do

6 have a lot of these businesses. It's a

7 chain, it's an inherent chain that the

8 Ordinance has to deal with constantly. And

9 sometime (unintelligible.) And it's nice.

10 I don't mind sitting outside, enjoy a cup of

11 coffee. It's a nice and new

12 (unintelligible) with any other issue, you

13 know, that's all I could tell you.

14 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

15 e) your Motion?


17 (unintelligible.) I think it was supported by

18 Member Krieger.

19 MEMBER SANGHVI: Please call the

20 roll.

21 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?


23 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?





1 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?



4 Gronachan?


6 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


8 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


10 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

11 six to zero.

12 MS. KOZINSKI: Thank you.

13 MEMBER SANGHVI: Your variance

14 has been granted.


16 Moving along, next Case

17 Number: 06-038, filed by Dykema Gossett,

18 PLLC, representing Sam's Club at 27300 Wixom

19 Road, Novi Promenade.

20 MS. HUNTER: Hi. My name is

21 Sandy Hunter and I'm with Dykema Gossett,

22 representing Sam's Club.

23 MEMBER BAUER: Do you swear or

24 affirm to tell the truth regarding case, 06-038?




1 MS. COTTER: Yes, I do.

2 MEMBER BAUER: Thank you.

3 MS. COTTER: Thank you.

4 As I noted, I'm Sandy Cotter.

5 I'm with Dykema Gossett's Lansing Office.

6 First of all, I wanted to express my

7 appreciation to the Building Department

8 Staff. Sarah and Alan, in particular --

9 while, I have never in person met you, I

10 really appreciate you taking my calls on

11 this rather unique situation that I have

12 before you this evening.

13 What we do have are two sign

14 variance requests, and these requests are

15 made to comply with the Michigan Liquor

16 Control Commission January 2006 Order;

17 through which it approved the issuance of

18 liquor licenses that will allow Sam's Club

19 to sell beer and wine, as well as spirits

20 for take out at the Club.

21 The license that allows for

22 the sale of spirits is actually limited by a

23 quota that's set forth under Michigan law.

24 So there are only a certain amount of




1 licenses permitted per local unit of

2 Government. And in Novi, you all have 16 of

3 these licenses authorized, and 12 of them

4 are presently issued.

5 We are an applicant for one of

6 the remaining four. The Liquor Control

7 Commission has a policy where if a liquor

8 license is issued to a membership club, such

9 as Sam's or Costco, or any of those

10 club-type businesses, then that Club must

11 make sales of alcohol to the general public.

12 You don't have to be a member in order to

13 purchase alcoholic beverages at a Club in

14 Michigan; and in many other States, as well.

15 We can't refuse those people entrance into

16 the store.

17 And so to promote that policy,

18 the Liquor Control Commission as part of

19 their Order of Approval, wants us to put

20 certain signs in place, so that the general

21 public is made aware of the policy, and

22 knows that they can come in to make the

23 purchases of beer, wine, or spirits. At the

24 same time, the Commission also recognizes




1 that it's policies, which are not set forth

2 in Michigan law, but they're granted some

3 ability to have discretion the issuance of

4 liquor licenses and the conditions that

5 those licenses are used under.

6 They cannot supersede local

7 Zoning laws and regulations. So if you deny

8 us, I have to take it through the Appeals

9 process, and I would like for the ability to

10 put those signs in and Sam would like to

11 (unintelligible) general public of it's

12 ability to come on the premises to make

13 these purchases; but at the same time, the

14 Liquor Control Commission would not then --

15 not issue the licenses to us.

16 I feel that I have to make you

17 aware of the whole story there. So that's

18 the purpose of that.

19 I would be happy to answer any

20 questions that you might have. The other

21 thing that I had discussed with Sarah before

22 is maybe you could see your way

23 (unintelligible) of thing. We could have

24 the sign that would be on the wall, even




1 though we might not be able to put the sign

2 up at the store entrance -- parking lot

3 entrance.

4 The Liquor Control Commission

5 staff with whom I've been working with

6 really believes that it's the wall sign on

7 the store that is more informative; and the

8 generally most accepted by the local units

9 of Government, as well.

10 So under full disclosure,

11 that's the whole story.

12 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

13 MS. COTTER: Thank you.

14 MEMBER SANGHVI: Is there anyone

15 in the audience that wishes to speak regarding

16 this case?

17 Seeing none, I'll inform the

18 Board there are 17 notices mailed; zero

19 approvals, zero objections.

20 Building Department?

21 MR. AMOLSCH: This matter came

22 up (unintelligible) come up before, a new

23 thing. I conferred with Mr. Schultz on the

24 and he said this sign did not fit in any




1 category. (Unintelligible.)

2 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

3 Well, I'll open it to the

4 Members.

5 Ms. Gronachan?

6 MEMBER GRONACHAN: I think that

7 this sign is unique. This particular request, I

8 should say, is a unique request; and that is, it

9 clearly a regulation. It's not -- it's not

10 advertising. It's not site location. It's not

11 drawing in. If anything, it's making sure that

12 people who walk in the door and try to buy

13 alcohol must have these requirements -- be 21

14 years of age and have proof of age at the time of

15 purchase.

16 So I have no problem with

17 this. I think that it serves a regulatory

18 purpose, and it might also contribute to a

19 safety -- avert some sort of confrontation

20 in the store, if somebody comes in and

21 they're not of age or there's some sort

22 of -- it makes -- it keeps those attempted

23 buyers out the door, and not walking in

24 trying to buy alcohol if they're not 21 --




1 not that I've ever did that.

2 I'm just getting my ID next

3 week (unintelligible) New York State.

4 Thank you.

5 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

6 Mr. Fischer.

7 MEMBER FISCHER: Thank you,

8 Mr. Chairman.

9 I somewhat agree, I somewhat

10 don't agree. I personally feel that one

11 sign is stating regulation. I feel that two

12 signs then becomes advertising that anybody

13 can come and buy alcohol in the store. So I

14 do see the need and I see a practical

15 difficulty for the wall sign, as you had

16 stated; but I don't think that the

17 Petitioner has established difficulty for

18 the second sign. And I don't think that it

19 really could be established.

20 So I would be in support of

21 one sign, and that would be -- it would be

22 up to the Petitioner to say the wall sign.

23 I'd be up for one sign, either one.

24 Thank you, Mr. Chairman.




1 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

2 Anybody else?

3 Yes, Mr. Shroyer?

4 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you,

5 Mr. Chair.

6 I meant to get to the Sam's

7 Club on Haggerty Road, and I wasn't able to

8 get there prior to the meeting.

9 Where is their sign located?

10 Do they have one in the parking lot or one

11 in the store?

12 MS. COTTER: They just have

13 one on the wall, as well.

14 MEMBER SHROYER: That's what I

15 thought. (Unintelligible) remember ever seeing

16 one in the parking lot.

17 MS. COTTER: I come before

18 Townships and City Boards' rather

19 frequently, and it's always a new issue,

20 they've never seen the issue before. I

21 think we have a Costco in Southwest Michigan

22 that had seen it before. But it's a new

23 question, and most of the local units of

24 Government don't care for the multiplicity




1 of the sign. They would prefer to have one.

2 They also have one on the inside, but that

3 couldn't have the same regulation

4 (unintelligible.) And as I noted before,

5 I'll just restate the Liquor Control

6 Commissions' preference is for a wall sign.

7 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you,

8 Ms. Cotter.

9 I want to ask Mr. Schultz

10 (unintelligible) with this being the first

11 time it comes before the Board, and it's not

12 addressed directly in any of our Ordinances,

13 if we go one way or the other, are we in

14 jeopardy of setting any type of precedence?

15 MR. SCHULTZ: Through the Chair.

16 Same answer we usually give.

17 Each parcel is different. This particular

18 building was actually before you earlier in

19 the meeting (unintelligible) sign variances.

20 You know, from my perspective, this is a

21 wish list on the part of the Liquor Control

22 Commission. They don't tell you that you

23 have to approve the sign. They want people

24 to know they can come to a Sam's Club at get




1 in the door for certain purposes.

2 So they can ask for huge

3 signs, if they wish, not what's necessarily

4 best for you as part (unintelligible)

5 committee. So I think, all these issues are

6 fair game, recognizing that there is a

7 legitimate purpose to putting some kind of

8 notification (unintelligible) 36 square

9 feet. That's a pretty good sized sign. The

10 Petitioner (unintelligible) very candid with

11 you.

12 If you go through your normal

13 process of what's reasonable for this

14 building with the signs that exist and all

15 that, it would probably help the Petitioner,

16 as long as they get something.

17 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you,

18 Mr. Schultz.

19 With that being said, I

20 believe I'm in favor of the Sign A, the

21 first sign, which is inside, the one

22 interior one. In favor of an exterior sign;

23 I would like to see it consistent in size

24 with the other exterior signs that we




1 approved earlier in the day.

2 I'd have to go back and figure

3 Outs what that was.


5 that.

6 MEMBER SHROYER: We denied that.

7 Never mind. (Unintelligible.)

8 Thank you, Mr. Chair.


10 MEMBER FISCHER: I move that in

11 Case Number: 06-038, filed by Dykema Gossett,

12 PLLC, representing Sam's Club at Novi Promenade,

13 that we grant the wall sign, Sign A, given that

14 the Petitioner has established practical

15 difficulty as this is part of the regulation of

16 the Michigan Liquor Control Commission; and that

17 we deny Sign B, given that the Petitioner has not

18 established a practical difficulty, in that it

19 would be an overage and an abundance of the same

20 message delivered in the first approved sign.

21 MEMBER BAUER: Second.


23 seconded.

24 Any other comments?




1 Please call the roll.

2 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer

3 --

4 MEMBER SHROYER: I'm sorry. I

5 just want to make a clarification, because I

6 referred (unintelligible) Sign B. And I was

7 referring to letter, the inter-office

8 correspondence dated January 11th, 2006. And I

9 just wanted to make sure that that is not

10 confused with the cover letter that addresses

11 Sign A as a wall sign and Sign B as the ground

12 sign.

13 MEMBER FISCHER: In the Motion I

14 stated, Sign A, the wall sign, is approve; Sign

15 B, the ground sign, for a point of clarification

16 as part of the Motion, that's fine with me; if

17 the seconder --


19 MEMBER SANGHVI: Please call the

20 roll.

21 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?


23 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?






2 Gronachan?


4 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


6 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


8 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


10 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

11 six to zero.

12 MS. COTTER: Thank you very

13 much.

14 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

15 e.)


17 Okay. Moving along.

18 MEMBER FISCHER: Mr. Chairman?



21 respectfully request a five minute break for the

22 Board Members?

23 MEMBER SANGHVI: If it's the

24 consensus of the Board.





2 MEMBER SANGHVI: If you'd like

3 to have a five minute coffee break go ahead and

4 take it.

5 We're adjourned for five

6 minutes.

7 (A brief recess was taken.)

8 (Back on the record.)

9 MEMBER SANGHVI: We'll resume

10 the session.


12 And I would like to call Case

13 Number: 06-042, filed by the Road

14 Commission or Oakland County.

15 I beg your pardon.

16 Is the applicant here?

17 MR. LAFATA: Yes.


19 corrected. Case Number: 06-039, filed by ACO

20 Hardware 41800 West Ten Mile Road.

21 Please identify yourself.

22 State your name and address and be sworn in

23 by our secretary, please.

24 MR. LAFATA: I am Sam Lafata.




1 I represent ACO Hardware nat 41800 Ten Mile

2 Road.

3 MEMBER BAUER: Do you swear or

4 affirm to tell the truth regarding case 06-039?

5 MR. LAFATA: I do.

6 MEMBER BAUER: Thank you, sir.

7 MEMBER SANGHVI: Please proceed.

8 MR. LAFATA: ACO Hardware has

9 been at that location for approximately 21

10 years. For approximately the past 15 years,

11 we've had merchandise displayed outside for

12 sale. We have treated and (unintelligible)

13 to come to us to market for sale.

14 That area, that section of the

15 sidewalk where we (unintelligible) display

16 the merchandise on is ten feet wide. We use

17 approximately four feet of that, leaving a

18 six foot walkway. The front of our store is

19 121 feet. We'd like to accommodate 30 feet

20 of that with season garden merchandise;

21 which is bags of dirt products and bags of

22 cement products.

23 By displaying this merchandise

24 out front, it allows our customers to know




1 what we have for sale, and (unintelligible)

2 of purchasing the merchandise. By us having

3 that merchandise on sale, out front, we're

4 creating a traffic for it, which allow us to

5 obviously have sales and continue to be

6 profitable. And in this market, the way

7 things are in this area, with the big box

8 coming in, we need to have all the sales we

9 can acquire.

10 This is something that we have

11 to better ourselves from them, so customers

12 can come to us, come in, shop, get the

13 merchandise and be gone and not have to

14 stand in line at the big box stores. If we

15 had to remove the merchandise from the front

16 of the building, we would have to stop

17 selling some of the products. We would lose

18 approximately 80 to 90 percent of those

19 sales, because the customer would not go

20 into there because we would not have them to

21 sell to customers.

22 That would create a hardship

23 on us. It would effect our sales; it would

24 effect our profitability.




1 So we're asking for a variance

2 to allow us to continue to have this

3 merchandise displayed out front; seasonal

4 merchandise, bag product; nothing in bulk.

5 It will not obstruct traffic, as far as

6 customers walking on the sidewalk.

7 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

8 MR. LAFATA: Thank you.

9 MEMBER SANGHVI: Anybody in the

10 audience that would like to address the Board

11 regarding this case?

12 Seeing none, we'll move on.

13 36 notices mailed; zero approvals, zero

14 objections.

15 Building Department?

16 MR. SAVEN: Just a couple

17 issues I want to point out. Number one is,

18 this is a B-3 zoning district; number two,

19 if you take a look at the plot plan, they

20 show where they plan on -- where they're

21 planning on putting the products, they have

22 a customer loading zone, which is coming off

23 the rear end of the building. I think this

24 is something they probably thought of, and




1 taking into account where they would like to

2 store; and they are going to maintain six

3 feet of walk way.

4 MR. LAFATA: Yes, yes.

5 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

6 Ms. Gronachan?


8 store always have outside ---

9 MR. SAVEN: (Unintelligible.)

10 (Interposing.)

11 MR. LAFATA: The past 15

12 years, we've had outside.

13 MEMBER GRONACHAN: Well, what --

14 why are they coming in front of us now? Because

15 there's a change in ownership (unintelligible) of

16 the building?

17 MR. SAVEN: Whether it's a

18 change in ownership -- I don't believe that's

19 what it is. I think the timing factor. A number

20 of times they have this particular

21 (unintelligible) only lasts for a couple of

22 seasons before it comes back to the Board.

23 MEMBER GRONACHAN: I would like

24 to make a comment on the record, then. I have --




1 how appropriate that this store be my second to

2 the last case, since I think I probably paid for

3 the first part of the sidewalk at that store

4 redoing my home for 25 years, and what a

5 wonderful store you have.

6 If I couldn't find it, I came

7 to your store. That's a personal point,

8 just not as a Board Member. But as a Board

9 Member and seeing that store, there's never

10 been -- it's always been clean and neat.

11 It's always been easy to identify. I can't

12 think of the countless of times that I've

13 shopped there, and have always seen your

14 items and there is no safety problems. The

15 sidewalk seems to be almost wider there,

16 because of that curb.

17 MR. LAFATA: Correct.

18 MEMBER GRONACHAN: As opposed to

19 the other parts of the sidewalk, which even adds

20 to the added safety to it; and also adds to the

21 ability of being -- of doing this.

22 So I'm in complete support of

23 this. This is a longstanding business in

24 Novi; has repainted, repotted, and replanted




1 probably 50 percent of the homes in Novi.

2 So I have no problem.

3 And in case -- if I'll make a

4 Motion if nobody has anything else to do.

5 In Case Number 06-039, filed

6 by Sam Lafata at ACO Hardware, I move that

7 the Motion for the request for sidewalk sale

8 in front of this hardware store from May 3rd

9 to October 31st, 2006, be approved, due to

10 the testimony given by the Petitioner and

11 the items stated by this Member.


13 MEMBER BAUER: Second.

14 MEMBER SANGHVI: (Unintelligibl

15 e) seconded.

16 Any comments from any Members?


18 I think I go to that store at

19 least once a week; never found it dirty;

20 never found the outside dirty. I think it's

21 great.

22 MR. LAFATA: Thank you.

23 MEMBER BAUER: I'm for it.





1 Go ahead.

2 MEMBER SHROYER: Thank you.

3 I think your manager probably

4 recognizes several of us up here from being

5 in the store every single week. And I fully

6 agree.

7 The only concerns that I had,

8 I addressed them earlier, consistency with

9 the seasonal dates. And, of course,

10 sidewalk safety in providing

11 (unintelligible.) I assume they're four

12 foot. And the six foot buffer for the

13 sidewalk meets all my requirements regarding

14 that.

15 So, I am in full support, as

16 well.

17 Thank you, Mr. Chair.

18 MEMBER SANGHVI: Any further


20 Seeing none, please call the

21 roll.


23 Gronachan?





1 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


3 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?


5 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?


7 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


9 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


11 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

12 six to zero.

13 MR. LAFATA: Thank you.

14 MEMBER SANGHVI: Your variance

15 has been granted. Please see the Building

16 Department.



19 Number: 06-042, filed by the Road Commission for

20 Oakland County for Michigan C-A-T, at 24460 Novi

21 Road, and I'm not going to list all that is

22 written down here.

23 You're going make the

24 presentation, Mr. Schmitt?




1 MR. SCHMITT: I am.


3 MR. SCHMITT: Did I have to be

4 sworn?

5 MEMBER BAUER: Yes. I'm not a

6 lawyer.

7 MEMBER BAUER: Do you solemnly

8 swear or affirm to tell the truth regarding case,

9 06-042?

10 MR. SCHMITT: I do.

11 MEMBER BAUER: Go ahead, sir.

12 MR. SCHMITT: Thank you.

13 Through the Chair.

14 The Road Commission for

15 Oakland County, in conjunction with our

16 Council and the Planning Department -- who

17 has worked outstandingly on this job -- have

18 met recently regarding the proposed right of

19 way acquisition for Novi Road. There's

20 really two projects that you need to be

21 aware of with respect to this.

22 First and foremost, the Novi

23 and Ten Mile intersection -- which you can't

24 actually see on this drawing -- but which




1 was completed in the last year, was the

2 first portion of the road construction.

3 The second portion was from

4 the end of the intersection improvements

5 north, to the Grand River Novi Road

6 intersection, which was also completed last

7 year. This Novi Road gap project will

8 involve a substantial amount of construction

9 in the area; and subsequently, several

10 right-of-way acquisitions.

11 To make a long story short

12 regarding the Michigan Cat property, the

13 Judge in the case has asked that these

14 projects be moved along a little bit quicker

15 than it was moving; and we have been asked

16 by the Road Commission -- Ms. Diane Hersey

17 and Ms. Grazac(ph) are here this evening to

18 bring this forward to the Commission to

19 discuss it.

20 Essentially what you're

21 dealing with is, Michigan CAT has been in

22 the City in this location for decades. At

23 one time they were considering a to the

24 corner of 12 Mile and West Park, that fell




1 through. They sold the property to a

2 developer that currently does have

3 development going on there. So what --

4 Michigan CAT remains on the property to this

5 day.

6 What we're dealing with

7 specifically with the right of way

8 acquisition -- let me show you on this

9 overhead -- this is a -- zooming in on the

10 northern end of the property, you can see at

11 the far left hand side -- this is the

12 centerline of Novi Road as it currently

13 exists. Their property line goes to the

14 center of Novi Road. It's an old platted

15 line. It's been there for -- for many

16 years.

17 The dashed -- the dark dashed

18 line is the proposed 60 foot right-of-way.

19 So the Road Commission for Oakland County

20 has acquiring 60 feet Pete along the entire

21 frontage of the property. As you can see,

22 there are several buildings and several

23 parking lots on the property. Specifically

24 this evening -- I'm going to go through




1 these one by one for you. We're dealing

2 with two buildings; Building A, which is the

3 southern most building, is an office

4 building; and Building B, which is the main

5 building people think of on the site as the

6 -- most of the retail sales and walk-in

7 traffic.

8 The northern most building,

9 although it looks close, is actually setback

10 exactly 160 feet from the centerline. So

11 variance is actually necessary for that

12 building. So Building A, which is 24460

13 Novi Road is currently setback 145 feet from

14 the centerline. This whole property is

15 zoned I-2. So the first thing you need to

16 know is 100 feet of setback is required from

17 the property line along the entire frontage,

18 which is why the northern most building is

19 conforming. They have 100 feet after the 60

20 feet of right-of-way acquisition.

21 So after the acquisition,

22 Building A will only have 65 feet of

23 frontage; Building B is in a similar

24 situation; will have 85 feet of frontage for




1 a portion of it and 96 feet for the

2 majority. Then you get into several parking

3 areas. At the far north end of the site,

4 next to the U.S. Post Office Building, there

5 is a small parking lot of five spaces. This

6 is within the front yard setback. In the

7 I-2 district, there are four specific

8 requirements you have to have. The two

9 we'll be dealing with this evening is the

10 100 foot setback, again; and the requirement

11 that front yard parking be screened by a

12 berm.

13 Given the grades that will

14 exist after the construction occurs, berm

15 construction along Novi road will not be

16 feasible. There's going to be substantial

17 grade changes throughout the length and even

18 existing there are substantial grade

19 changes. So from this parking area, we are

20 requesting a variance to eliminate the berm

21 and a variance for the lack of setback in

22 this case, 40 -- 52 feet in setback is the

23 variance.

24 The main building, the 24800




1 building, as I'm sure you're aware, has a

2 large parking area right in front of it at

3 the bottom of the hill. Again, this area,

4 not feasible to put a berm in due the

5 existing really and proposed grades. And

6 actually this parking area will be setback

7 approximately two to three feet once the

8 acquisition occurs.

9 There is going to be some

10 substantial grade changes in this area, and

11 it's not feasible to move these parking

12 spaces anywhere else. So we're requesting a

13 variance for the lack of setback there, as

14 well. The last two parking areas are a

15 small area to the north of 24460 Novi Road

16 and a small area to the south. Again, same

17 concerns as before. Parking area C does not

18 have the required berm, and is not setback

19 appropriately. And parking area D, no berm

20 and is not setback appropriately for the

21 spaces I've indicated on the plan in front

22 of you. So those seven spaces, I believe.

23 Nine -- I apologize, nine spaces are not

24 setback appropriately.




1 Lastly, there is a display

2 area -- and I'm sure you're all aware of --

3 along Novi Road. This is what you see.

4 There are four pieces of heavy machinery

5 right along Novi Road. It's always been

6 there. It's existing, non-conforming use,

7 because it's in the existing non-conforming

8 situation; because it's in the front yard,

9 which is not normally permitted.

10 So we are requesting a

11 variance to be able to relocate that so that

12 it's outside in the future right of way, but

13 still in the front yard, still in the

14 configuration that you see in front of you.

15 Small gravel pad for up to four pieces of

16 machinery.

17 The question really is why

18 have we gotten to this point. As

19 Mr. Schultz can elaborate on further and the

20 attorneys for the Road Commission, State law

21 allows the applicant -- State law allows the

22 Governmental agency -- my apologies -- to

23 the applicant for variance in the case of an

24 acquisition. That's why the Road Commission




1 is the applicant in this case.

2 The owner of the property,

3 Michigan Caterpillars, Michigan CAT is not

4 requesting these variances. This is not a

5 situation they brought upon themselves by

6 any means. This is a situation that occurs

7 as a result of the acquisition and the road

8 improvements.

9 So to go through some of the

10 standards you may want to look at. On the

11 last page of my memorandum in your packet,

12 outlines the nine specific variances that

13 are being requested by the Road Commission

14 this evening. The effect of these variances

15 will be in the legal realm in many ways.

16 Not to get into the gory details, but once

17 the -- this goes to a Judge and possibly a

18 Jury, they're going to look at the

19 usefulness of the property and the value of

20 the property after the taking.

21 A granting of variances, the

22 Zoning Board of Appeals will in essence say,

23 we recognize these don't conform to the

24 existing standards, however, it's not




1 altering the character of the area. It's

2 not changing. It's not harming the intent

3 of the Ordinance. And should this be --

4 should this building be burned down it would

5 be able to be rebuilt in a similar -- in the

6 exact same configuration.

7 That's really the hardship on

8 the applicant in a situation like this. If

9 we come in and acquire property, that then

10 renders their building non-conforming. And

11 heaven forbid a fire comes in or a truck

12 rams into it and the building collapses;

13 they would need to seek relief from the

14 Zoning Board of Appeals to rebuild that

15 building, because it was not conforming with

16 our Ordinance.

17 What we're doing is getting in

18 front of that problem before it ever occurs.

19 This certainly helps in two ways. It helps,

20 as I said, if a catastrophe ever occured;

21 and it helps, really the financing the

22 Planning Department gets on a regular basis

23 request from property owners that say, we'd

24 like zoning verification that our property




1 is in compliance with current Ordinances.

2 Pretty much every lending

3 institution that I'm aware of requests that

4 from property owners when they refinance or

5 finance property.

6 The second part of my memo on

7 the last page, should the Board choose to

8 grant the variances in this case, I've had

9 several discussions regarding the practical

10 difficulty for these variances. I've

11 discussed them at some length with you this

12 evening. And I'd be happy to discuss them

13 further.

14 As I've mentioned, the

15 attorneys from the Road Commission are here,

16 and Mr. Schultz may have something to add,

17 but that's all I have at this time.

18 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you

19 Mr. Schmitt.

20 There were 14 notices mailed

21 out; zero approvals, one objection.

22 Would you just like to mention

23 it for the Minutes, please.





1 The objection from JD Dinan

2 Company. We own the property at 24400 Novi

3 Road. In the fall of 2005, our complex

4 applied for a variance allowing Classic

5 Collision (unintelligible.) We were met by

6 strong opposition regarding storage issues

7 at our complex and the Board placed a six

8 month review on our application in order to

9 reassess our outdoor storage issues upon

10 receipt of our certificate of occupancy.

11 Therefore we regretfully request that --

12 respectfully request that the same

13 (unintelligible) policy be applied to every

14 business located on Novi Road. Outdoor

15 storage is not permitted.

16 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you

17 Mr. Secretary.

18 Are you going to wear a double

19 hat and (unintelligible) Planning Department

20 comments now?

21 MR. SCHMITT: You know, the

22 Planning Department appreciates the Road

23 Commission coming to us with this. The City has

24 in the past, dealt with similar situations, most




1 notably Twelve Mile. I can say that, you know,

2 we developed a pretty good rapore here and

3 hopefully throughout Novi Road (unintelligible)

4 issues obviously, we would come back to the Board

5 as necessary.

6 But for now, this is what we

7 have. The Planning Department

8 (unintelligible) (interposing.)


10 Department, any comments?

11 MR. SAVEN: Just to point out

12 that if you took a look at those two homes

13 to the north, (unintelligible) relationship

14 to the road (unintelligible) they are

15 depressed or they are lower than the road,

16 and the issue regarding the berm issue maybe

17 (unintelligible) do any good.

18 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

19 At this point, Mr. Schultz, do

20 you have any comments?

21 MR. SCHULTZ: Just briefly.

22 Mr. Schmitt outlined the

23 practical difficulty questions.

24 (Unintelligible) provided you a letter




1 explaining why the Road Commission's the

2 applicant; what your authority is, what kind

3 (unintelligible) on that. We only asked the

4 Road Commission to be here if there were

5 specific questions for them; didn't have

6 them prepare a presentation at all for the

7 Board.

8 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you,

9 Mr. Schultz.

10 Board Members?

11 Yes, Ms. Gronachan?

12 The final hoorah.


14 don't have no oil can and no Kleenex, so let's

15 not do that.

16 Based on the presentation

17 given by our Planning Department and also

18 the material that was in our packets

19 summarizing the variance requests, I am in

20 full support of all of these requests. I

21 feel that the Petitioner should not suffer

22 any type of difficulty. And I would ask

23 that in rendering our decision, that our

24 attorney right or could create our final




1 findings to make it clear, especially since

2 this is going back to court.

3 MR. SCHULTZ: If I may, through

4 the Chair?

5 MEMBER SANGHVI: Please, go

6 ahead, Mr. Schultz.

7 MR. SCHULTZ: That's always a

8 good request. I'd be happy to do that for the

9 board. We kind of anticipated direction, and

10 Mr. Schmitt kind of took that opportunity in that

11 final paragraph in the report that he prepared,

12 where he did address practical difficulty and the

13 reason and our hope was, that the Board -- if

14 it's inclined the grant that, that recitation was

15 sufficient, I think for a Motion.

16 MEMBER GRONACHAN: And you would

17 like that read into the record?

18 MR. SCHULTZ: (Unintelligible.)


20 isn't any further comment, and given the hour, I

21 would just go ahead and make a Motion, if that's

22 all right with the fellow Board Members?

23 Although I lost my paperwork.

24 I need the case number. Okay.




1 In Case Number 06-042, filed

2 by Michigan CAT, filed by Diane Hersey for

3 the Road Commission of Oakland County, I

4 move that the nine variances for the

5 property located at 24460 Novi Road, 24800

6 Novi Road, and 25000 Novi Road, be granted,

7 based on the fact that the practical

8 difficulty standards cover these types of

9 dimensional variances.

10 In this case, the practical

11 difficulty is two-fold. First, the property

12 owner would have severe hardship for the

13 business after the Novi Road widening. If

14 the buildings and the parking are deemed to

15 be non-conforming, this would make financing

16 through banks extremely difficult, and no

17 modification to the property could be made

18 in the future without a variance.

19 The second is the Municipal

20 side of the difficulty. Not granting these

21 variances would be a substantial detriment

22 to the overall public good. As the RCOC

23 would like -- likely not to be able to

24 acquire the right-of-way necessary to widen




1 Novi Road. And we'd have to pay

2 substantially more for it; a cost that would

3 need to be burden on the taxpaying public.

4 I'd also like to add that

5 there is a safety issue. By not granting

6 these variances, there could be an increase

7 of hazards with the road not being repaired

8 properly.

9 The granting of these

10 variances would not impair the intent of the

11 Ordinance, as there is no new construction

12 proposed on the CAT -- Michigan CAT property

13 that would alter the existing conditions.

14 And the character of the area will not

15 change, as the parking and the buildings

16 will still be in the same location as they

17 are today; just closer to the travel portion

18 of the road after construction.

19 MEMBER BAUER: Second.

20 MEMBER SANGHVI: Motion has been

21 made and seconded.

22 Any discussion?






1 Mr. Fischer.

2 MEMBER FISCHER: If appropriate

3 and agreed to by counsel, a friendly amendment

4 just to point out on the record, as well, that

5 the request -- the variance requests are not

6 cause of the -- practical difficulty is not

7 caused by the property owner.


9 already, but sure.

10 MEMBER BAUER: No problem.

11 MEMBER FISCHER: Is that a yes?

12 MEMBER GRONACHAN: Let me sleep

13 on it.

14 MEMBER BAUER: Next case.

15 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

16 Any other comments?

17 Please call the roll.


19 Gronachan?


21 ROBIN WORKING: Member Bauer?


23 ROBIN WORKING: Member Fischer?





1 ROBIN WORKING: Member Krieger?


3 ROBIN WORKING: Member Sanghvi?


5 ROBIN WORKING: Member Shroyer?


7 ROBIN WORKING: Motion passes

8 six to zero.

9 MEMBER SANGHVI: Thank you.

10 Your request is granted.


12 All right. Moving along.

13 Tonight is young and we're

14 almost done here.

15 Before we finish for the day,

16 I have a very pleasant task to perform, and

17 that's to present a special plaque to

18 Cynthia Gronachan.

19 Will you please come here,

20 Ms. Gronachan?


22 MEMBER GRONACHAN: Where are we

23 going?

24 MEMBER SANGHVI: We have done




1 everything we can to make sure you go. And so

2 this is the final (unintelligible.) Joking

3 apart, Cindy, we love you. We will miss you.


5 Thank you very much.

6 MEMBER SANGHVI: Good luck an

7 God bless you.


9 everybody. This is wonderful. This is very

10 nice. I have to go back to my mic in order to

11 give a speech.

12 Fine, okay. I hope that there

13 are a few people at home watching and not

14 just to be able to blow my horn and walk in

15 the bask of the limelight these last couple

16 of days in Novi.

17 Justin said if I cried during

18 the meeting, he would walk out and resign

19 from the Zoning Board of Appeals.

20 (Unintelligible.) But this is the end of an

21 era. And I've been fortunate enough that

22 when he moved here to Novi I got to watch

23 and witness the growth and the challenges

24 that this City faced.




1 And with that experience, I

2 take with me to new area, which is similar

3 to Novi, but I will never forget the lessons

4 that I've learned; the people that I've met

5 and the lives that have touched me, and I

6 hope that I've touched you. And from the

7 comments tonight, I guess I have. I didn't

8 really realize just how much. So I'm very

9 grateful.

10 And I wasn't kidding earlier

11 when I said I have a lot of boxes packed at

12 the house, but what I take with me from

13 Novi, will never be in a box or never on a

14 shelf.

15 Thank you very much.

16 MEMBER SANGHVI: If there are no

17 further comments, (unintelligible) hear a Motion

18 to adjourn?

19 MEMBER FISCHER: Motion to

20 adjourn.

21 MEMBER BAUER: So moved.

22 MEMBER SANGHVI: So moved.

23 All signify by saying Aye.






2 adjourned.

3 Thank you.

4 (The meeting was adjourned at

5 9:40 p.m.)

6 - - - - - -

1 C E R T I F I C A T E


3 I, Machelle Billingslea-Moore,

4 do hereby certify that I have recorded

5 stenographically the proceedings had and testimony

6 taken in the above-entitled matter at the time and

7 place hereinbefore set forth, and I do further certify

8 that the foregoing transcript, consisting of (116)

9 typewritten pages, is a true and correct transcript

10 of my said stenograph notes.



13 ___________________________

Machelle Billingslea-Moore,

14 Certified Shorthand Reporter


16 June 22, 2006.