Agendas and Minutes

Planning Commission (View All)

Planning Commission Mtg

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

September 9, 2014
Chair Richard Kaplan called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m. in the Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 East Main Street.
Commissioners Present:   Staff Present:
Troy J. Brown, Jr.
Michael Dawkins
Richard Kaplan
Debbie Miller
Melanie Mindlin
Tracy Peddicord
Lynn Thompson
  Bill Molnar, Community Development Director
Maria Harris, Planning Manager
Amy Gunter, Assistant Planner
April Lucas, Administrative Supervisor
Absent Members:   Council Liaison:
None   Mike Morris, absent

Community Development Director Bill Molnar announced OSF is holding an open house on September 22 to consider changes to the brick area outside the theater. He also noted the August 22, 2013 Transportation Commission minutes that were handed out and commented on the Commission’s review of potential improvements to North Mountain Ave. He clarified the City’s Public Works Department has been evaluating this area and there are a number of recommendations from the Transportation Commission reflected in the minutes. Mr. Molnar stated several of the improvements have already been completed and the Public Works Department is scheduled to resurface the area in early November and will re-stripe the road at that time. He added rumble strips are being considered as well.
Normal Neighborhood Plan Working Group: Commissioner Kaplan announced the next meeting will be on September 18 and a panel of representatives has been asked to provide testimony to the Working Group. He provided a summary of the discussion topics from the prior meetings which included: open space and conservation areas, the railroad crossing and East Main Street improvements, financing options, density, and the street network. Commissioner Kaplan noted an alternate plan has been presented that shifts the density to the south by the railroad tracks, provides moderate density in the interior, and retains the neighborhood serving commercial along East Main Street. He stated this plan would reduce the overall density and therefore the City would need to determine where they will make up the difference.
Mr. Molnar stated if the Council shows interest in the revised plan, he will advocate that the alternate plan come back to the Planning Commission for review and comment.
Downtown Beautification Committee: Commissioner Dawkins provided an overview of the approved improvements, including: historical markers, a new “Welcome to Ashland” sign, replacing tree wells, replacing street lights with LED lights and retrofitting them with water for hanging baskets, adding a sculpture near Earthly Goods, and improving the landscaping at the corner of Winburn Way and North Main and the parking lot at the corner of Lithia Way and Pioneer Street.

Approval of Minutes
1.  August 12, 2014 Regular Meeting.
Commissioners Brown/Dawkins m/s to approve the Consent Agenda. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed 5-0. [Commissioners Mindlin and Thompson abstained]
No one came forward to speak.

Approval of Findings for PA-2014-00710, 143 Nutley.

Ex Parte Contact
Commissioner Dawkins stated he went by the site again. No ex parte contact was reported.
Commissioners Dawkins/Brown m/s to approve the Findings for PA-2014-00710. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed 5-0. [Commissioners Mindlin and Thompson abstained]

Approval of Findings for PA-2014-00967, 572-582 Fair Oaks.
Commissioner Dawkins stated he went by the site again. No ex parte contact was reported.
Commissioners Miller/Dawkins m/s to approve the Findings for PA-2014-00967. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed 5-0. [Commissioners Mindlin and Peddicord abstained]

PLANNING ACTION:  #2014-01354 & #2014-01355
SUBJECT PROPERTY:  1016 Clear Creek Drive

APPLICANT:  Rick and Judy Lindeman and Urban Development Services, representing Mark Newberger Exempt Trust
DESCRIPTION:  A request for modifications of the Aleph Springs Subdivision approval (PA #2008-00183) which involved: a 12-lot, 15-unit Performance Standards Subdivision; Site Review approval for a two-story, six-unit residential building; an Exception to Street Standards; Tree Removal Permits; and Lot Line Adjustments. The modifications requested include: 1) partitioning the property at 1016 Clear Creek Drive into to two separate single family residential parcels; 2) Conditional Use Permit and Site Review to allow for an accessory residential unit approval for one of the newly created parcels. COMPREHENSIVE PLAN DESIGNATION: Single Family Residential; ZONING: R-1-5; ASSESSOR’S MAP: 39 1E 09AA; TAX LOTS: 1608 and 1702.
Commissioner Kaplan read aloud the public hearing procedures for land use hearings.
Ex Parte Contact
Commissioner Kaplan stated he made a site visit and knows the applicants, but was not aware of the details of their application and has not discussed it with them. No ex parte contact was reported.
Staff Report
Assistant Planner Amy Gunter presented the staff report. She explained the Aleph Springs subdivision was originally approved in 2006 and came back in 2007 with modifications; final plan approval occurred in 2008. Ms. Gunter stated the applicant is requesting to modify the 2008 approval and take one of the lots originally approved for six units and create two single family lots.
Ms. Gunter reviewed the site and stated the proposed density complies with the subdivision requirements and both lots meet the minimum lot size requirements. She added the street improvements have already been completed and stated the majority of the infrastructure has already been installed. Ms. Gunter reviewed the proposed conditions for approval and noted the typographical error in the trash enclosure condition and stated this would be corrected. She added staff will also add a condition that required the flag drive to be signed as ‘no parking’.
Ms. Gunter concluded her presentation and stated the application meets all criteria and staff is recommending approval.
Applicant’s Presentation
Mark Knox/485 W Nevada and Rick Linderman/550 W Nevada: Mr. Knox stated they have no issues with the two conditions mentioned by staff. He clarified only one of the lots will develop immediately and voiced his appreciation for the applicant’s willingness to provide a path to the Havarah. Mr. Knox stated this application meets the coverage, density, and trip generation requirements as well as all of the items laid out in the original subdivision approval. He asked for the Commission’s approval and stated they are available to answer any questions they may have.
Public Testimony
Mark Decker/998 Clear Creek/Stated this will be his new neighbor and stated he has reviewed the plan and supports this proposal. Mr. Decker noted he is on the board of the Homeowners Association and stated reducing the density is the right thing to do. He voiced his support for keeping the path to the Havarah and stated the HOA supports this application.
Commissioners Kaplan closed the hearing and the record at 8:00 p.m.
Deliberations & Decision
Commissioner Brown noted a typographical error on condition 4(b) and stated the word “on” in the first sentence should be removed.
Commissioner Miller voiced concern with the industrial style design of the proposed residence and stated it seems incompatible with the neighborhood.
Commissioners Dawkins/Peddicord m/s to approve Planning Action #2014-01354 and #2014-01355 with the conditions of approval recommended by staff. Roll Call Vote: all AYES. Motion passed unanimously.

Identification of ULUO Key Amendments – Council Request.
Mr. Bill Molnar explained the City Council held a meeting on the Unified Land Use Ordinance (ULUO) and while it was noticed as a public hearing and first reading, the Council determined they needed another meeting to review the key amendments more thoroughly before they took a vote on the ordinance. He stated Mayor Stromberg asked each city councilor to identify the items they felt needed to be discussed more in depth and asked the Planning Commission to provide a list as well. Mr. Molnar clarified these should be items the Commission feels would be of most interest to the community.
Planning Manager Maria Harris provided a brief overview of the Staff Memo and explained she grouped the key amendment suggestions into two categories: conserving land use and resources, and improving the planning application process.
The Commission reviewed the key amendment list contained in the Staff Report and the full amendment matrix, and offered their suggestions for which items should be included on the list to the Council. Commissioner Brown asked if the Commission could have additional time to analyze the full amendment matrix and provide recommendations for key amendments at a future meeting. Staff indicated due to the Council’s meeting timeline, there is not adequate time to bring this item back for further discussion. Commissioner Mindlin stated the Commission has spent a lot of time working on this and believes if there was something substantive missing from the list they would have remembered what it was, and feels the Staff Report accurately captures the more significant items. The Commission continued their discussion of potential key amendments and agreed to recommend the following items for further City Council review:
  • Allow cottage housing in single family residential zones
  • Add solar orientation standards for street and lot layout in residential zones
  • Increase the affordable housing density bonus and maximum density bonus in multi-family zones
  • Change in approval process for accessory residential units
  • Change in side yard setback abutting residential zones
  • Increase in allowed building height in commercial zones
  • Building separation in large-scale non residential development
  • Accessory residential unit review process
  • Change in threshold for public hearing for non-residential basic site review applications
In addition to putting forth the list of amendments, staff was asked to elaborate in their memo to the City Council the policy objectives behind the recommended changes, and to provide both the existing and proposed code language.
Meeting adjourned at 9:00 p.m.
Submitted by, April Lucas

Administrative Supervisor

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