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Agendas and Minutes

Historic Commission (View All)

Historic Commission Regular Meeting Minutes

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Meeting Minutes of

October 5, 2005


Community Development/Engineering Services Building – 51 Winburn Way – Siskiyou Room


Historic Commissioners Present: Dale Shostrom, Keith Swink, Sam Whitford, Rob Saladoff, Terry Skibby, Jay Leighton, and Henry Baker
Absent Members:  Tom Giordano, Allen Crutcher

Council Liaison: Jack Hardesty

High School Liaison: None Appointed
SOU Liaison: None Appointed
Staff Present: Maria Harris, Senior Planner, Billie Boswell, Administration




At 7:04, Chairman Dale Shostrom called the regular meeting to order.





Ms. Boswell said applicant, Bill Emerson asked to have the minutes amended to add “the designer and” added to paragraph two and to add “main cornice and” to paragraph three of the 11 First Street section.  Ms. Leighton moved to approve the September 7, 2005 minutes as amended. Mr. Swink seconded the motion. They were approved unanimously.




Planning Action 2005-01674

Site Review

Ron & Carrie Yamaoka

11 First Street


Chairman Shostrom described the request for a Site Review approval for a three-story, mixed-use building comprised of restaurant space, office space and two residential units.  The proposed building is approximately 4,500 square feet in size, and is located in the Downtown and Detail Site Review zones.  A Tree Removal Permit is requested to remove four trees sized six inches in diameter at breast height and greater.


Ms. Harris explained the request for the 4,536 square foot, 3-story building is subject to Basic, Detail, Downtown and Historic Site Review Standards within in the C-1-D zone.  The project meets the major design details to maintain the pedestrian-friendly alley on Will Dodge Way, a ten-foot public sidewalk, a generous articulated front entrance, strong vertical rhythm and vertical windows. The height is in relation to the building mass.


Staff recommends approval with 27 conditions to include conditions recommended by the Historic Commission and to require Historic Commission review for any future additions of awnings and/or marquees. 


Bill Emerson, designer and applicant’s agent shared colored samples of the brick proposed.  He also provided a copy of a letter from the adjacent property owner giving permission to remove a tree.  He reviewed architectural details of the building and the finishes of stucco and thin-brick at the request of Mr. Skibby.


Since there was no one in the audience to speak, the public meeting was closed.



Chairman Shostrom voiced a strong concern about the building presenting a confusing picture of the true character of the historical era.  Shostrom referred to and read the standard on Imitations from the Historic District Design Standards.  He felt the general public driving by would think it was built in the early 1900’s because of the traditional and richly detailed design elements, the double-hung windows, the finish materials and the proportions.  He felt minor simplifications could be done to the exterior to make it compatible and not confusing.


Mr. Emerson pointed out examples of simplification of the architectural details such as use of arched lintels with rectangular windows rather than arched windows, simplified cornice and frieze, base column detailed with simple inset and plaster lintels rather than brick.


Mr. Skibby felt the use of obviously new brick and stucco materials communicates the structure is a new building. It also includes elements the Historic Commission has approved in other projects.  Ms. Leighton agreed adding the window design and the architectural detail on the alley side would not be seen in old historic buildings.  Leighton added that the brickwork would appear too perfect to mistake the proposed building for a historic structure.  She referred to the Post Office in Jacksonville as a newer structure with traditional details. 


Mr. Saladoff was concerned about the appropriateness of having the accessible elevator access off the alley instead of from the front façade. He added that it was a nice mix of materials and textures.  He qualified the statement by saying that he believes the set of buildings that are being produced look back at history rather than speaking of today.


Discussion followed concerning the architectural details of new buildings in the downtown area of the City of Ashland and whether or not they should mimic the 1900’s-vintage historic buildings or be of modern design but compatible with the old structures.  Some of the Commissioners felt this was a bigger discussion that should be explored at another time. 


Shostrom said he thought this was an important discussion.  He said the proposed building reminds him of the National Bank building at Main and Pioneer.   It is richly detailed and the proportions and materials are very traditional.  He believes that anyone who drives by will think it is an old building.  Shostrom added that he thinks minor simplifications could be made to the exterior to make it compatible and not confusing.


Skibby said he though this design was Ashland.


Saladoff said he disagreed with Skibby in that the buildings should always be matching 1900’s style.  He said he would hate to see every future building be a simplified version of the 1900’s.


A suggestion was made to add the date at the base of the building.  The commissioners had a discussion on the appropriateness of using a date to distinguish the style.


Saladoff said he thinks the elevator at the back of the building is not very friendly to people who need to use it.  He added that in an older building, the elevator would have been placed at the front of the building off a lobby.


Mr. Swink, Mr. Whitford and Mr. Baker felt the proposed building would fit in and be a handsome addition to the downtown.  Mr. Baker said the design of building “made him smile.”


Mr. Swink made a motion to recommend approval of the project with the condition that the applicant explore relocating the elevator core to the front of the building for ease of accessibility.


The Commisison discussed the motion.  Shostrom asked if other commissioners were interested in recommending the following conditions including that the brick should be smooth or wire cut rather than tumbled or old-looking, that the windows should not be double-hung and that the columns have a more contemporary treatment such as the base being something like poured concrete to show that it is from this time period.  There was agreement on the language concerning the brick.  Shostrom restated his position that he belived the building was confusing as to the time period and that would be the reason he would not be voting in favor of the recommended approval.

Mr. Swink amended his motion to recommend approval of the project subject to the following recommendations:


1.      Explore relocating the elevator core to the front of the building for ease of accessibility.

2.      Brick should be smooth or “wire-cut” and should not be tumbled or old. Color should be traditional with no antique finish.

3.      Use of a more contemporary treatment such as poured concrete on the column bases.

4.      Provide samples of exterior building materials and colors with submittal of the building permit for review by the Historic Commission.


Mr. Whitford seconded the motion and it was approved 7-1 with Chairman Shostrom casting the dissenting vote.



Planning Action 2005-011307

Site Review

Russ Dale

125 Sherman Street


Chairman Shostrom described the request for a Site Review approval to construct a second residential unit attached to the existing garage.  A Conditional Use Permit is required to expand the non-conforming garage structure.  The garage is located within a foot of the rear property line and ten feet is required.  The new proposed addition would meet setback requirements.


Ms. Harris said the 471 square foot unit would be attached to an existing, non-conforming single-car garage located to the rear of the property off the alley.  The garage would also be enlarged to a 2-car size.  The property is zoned R-2.  A Conditional Use is required because the garage encroaches 9 feet into the 10-foot setback.  Staff recommends approval with 14 conditions including requiring the applicant to submit colors and materials to the historic commission with their submission of the building permit.


Chairman Shostrom pointed out that the patio cover appeared to encroach into the setback.


Russ Dale, owner of the property, explained that the new unit would be compatible with several other small units on the adjoining properties and with the neighborhood in general.  Mr. Dale brought several pictures of the existing units, the garage and the surrounding yards.


Mr. Skibby pointed out that the plans showed 8 inch lap siding.  Mr. Dale said he would prefer to use vertical bat and board siding to match the existing house on the property.  He wants the siding stained, not painted. 


Ms. Leighton was concerned about the small, high windows near the front door.  Mr. Dale said this was to mitigate the view of the existing house and public walkway. 


Chairman Shostrom felt the expansion of the garage and the layout of the new unit would eliminate important functional use of the backyard space that is not typical in historic neighborhoods.  The pedestrian traffic flow through the property is unnatural.  Suggestions were made to change the garage doors to the alley side and flipping the orientation of the ridge of the garage to minimize the front elevation and open up more usable space in the yard. Ms. Leighton pointed out that this would allow the man-door to be relocated away from the new unit’s front door.


Mr. Saladoff felt the close proximity of the unit to the existing house eliminated too much outdoor space and created a “no man’s land”.


A motion by Mr. Skibby and seconded by Mr. Baker stating that the Commission would recommend denial of the Conditional Use Permit for the following reasons:

  1. Architectural incompatibility of the non-conforming garage expansion (width & height) facing Sherman Street.
  2. Scale, bulk and coverage are incompatible with the lot and building layouts found within the historic neighborhood.

The Commission recommends the application be continued and the applicant given time to address the concerns that were raised.  The motion passed unanimously.


Mr. Dale volunteered to postpone the action to rework the design and layout.




145 East Main Street

SERA Architects – John Echlin, Mark Knox and David Sheber

Pre-Application comments on proposal for a Mixed-Use Development


Mr. Echlin presented a preliminary design proposal for a 3-story, mixed use building on a small in-fill lot on Lithia Way that is currently used as a parking lot.  There would be retail on the ground floor and residential on the second and third floors, with a rooftop deck accessible only to the residential units.  It is being designed to be symmetrical with a vertical emphasis using a post and lintel construction.  There is a high ratio of glass to wall to highlight views to the North and bring in more natural daylight.  Proposed exterior materials include brick masonry, wood or metal windows and a divided, fixed metal awning.  A private but open railing will be incorporated into the cornice for the roof deck.


Some of the concerns and recommendations pointed out by the Commissioners included:

1.      Every floor of the building has the same level of importance – need to accentuate a definitive base, middle and top.

2.      Too high a percentage of glazing to wall.

3.      Minimal base – carry the base through under the ground floor storefront windows.

4.      Provide more relief on the front façade.

5.      Accentuate the alley entrances to make them more prominent.

6.      Call out materials and provide section drawings.

7.      Show how the side elevation is treated since it will be visible.

8.      Return with some options to the full Commission.


Mr. Echlin arranged to meet with all the Commissioners at the Historic Review Board on Thursday, October 27th from 2:30 to 3:30.  He agreed to provide design drawings two to three days prior to the meeting for the Commissioners to preview.





A. Review Board – Following is the month’s schedule for the Review Board, which meets every Thursday from 3:00 to at least 3:30 p.m. in the Planning Department:


October 6th

Terry, Tom, Keith

October 13th

Terry, Henry, Dale

October 20th

Terry, Jay, Allen

October 27th


Terry, Tom, Sam 

(All Commissioners from 2:30-3:30)

November 3rd

Terry, Keith, Rob



B.  Project Assignments for Planning Actions


PA #2000-120

485 “A” Street (Steve Hoxmeier)


PA #2002-100

142 East Main Street (Earthly Goods)


PA #2004-026

81 Central Avenue (Wes & Lucinda Vail)


PA #2004-018

322 Pioneer Street (Al & Sandra Carlson)


PA #2004-100

80 Wimer (Tom & Kathy Petersen)


PA #2004-102

832 “A” Street (Ilene Rubenstein)


PA #2004-110

150 Church St (Robert M. Saladoff)


PA #2004-115

724 Iowa St (Dave and Jamie Kaufman)


PA #2004-138

234 Vista St (Sid & Karen DeBoer)


PA #2004-150

87 Fourth St (Unitarian Universal Fellowship Church)


PA #2004-154

180 Lithia Way (Archerd & Dresner)



685 A Street (William Reeves)



150 N. Pioneer (Stan Potocki & Bruce McLean)



249 Hillcrest Drive (Russell & JoAnn Manzone)



70 Water Street (Ashland Creek Holdings, LLC)



820 “C” Street (Randy & Helen Ellison)



11 First Street (Ron Yamaoka)



C.     Co-Sponsorship with Conservation Commission for Fall Workshop – No report


D.     Lithia Springs National Register Nomination – Ms. Harris reported she is preparing a grant proposal to fund hiring a consultant to do a pilot recognizance survey of the Quiet Village neighborhood.  Using this smaller section of the City is intended to help formulate the methodology and stay within the confines of the budget.  Chairman Shostrom suggested using the funds to look at the top 70 known historically significant structure instead.  Further discussion was tabled to the next meeting.


E.     Multiple Listing Survey for National Register of Historic Places – No report


F.      Single Family Residential Design Standards – No report


G.     Brown Bag Meeting – No report



NEW BUSINESS – Ms. Leighton told the Commissioners that she was contacted by the Arts Commission to be on a Ad Hoc committee to choose a piece of public art to be displayed at the corner of Lithia Way and Pioneer in front of the Naturals .  The artwork was funded by some local families. The piece chosen was three basalt stone pillars ranging from 4 to 8 feet and imbedded with uplifting words and other artistic items.




The next Historic Commission meeting will be on November 2, 2005 at 7:00 pm in the Siskiyou Room.




With a motion by Leighton and second by Saladoff, it was the unanimous decision of the Commission to adjourn the meeting at 11:05 p.m.


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