April 7, 2003



Item 1 on the Agenda:  Meeting called to order – Roll Call.


Present:            Ms. Abbott                           Council & Staff Present:

                        Mr. Bone                            Councilman Carol Rudi

Mr. Kiser                                     Councilman Shirley Smith

Mr. Dillingham                    Councilman Wayne Beer

Mr. Evans                           Scott Wingerson, Assist. City Manager

                        Chairman Hill                           David Ramsay, City Counselor

                          Mr. Kiser

                        Ms. Newsom

                        Mr. Revenaugh

                        Ms. Wild                


Absent:            Ms. Alexander        

                        Ms. Lowe

                        Mr. Steffens           


Item 2 on the Agenda:  Pledge of Allegiance.


Chairman Hill led the group in reciting the Pledge of  Allegiance.


Item 3 on the Agenda:  Approval of March 17, 2003 Minutes.


Mr. Wingerson stated that Ms. Alexander called and said she would not be able to attend the meeting, but she did have a correction to the minutes.  One page 3 where she spoke of the additional lighting on Antioch, she had stated “planned” lighting along the Antioch curve.


Ms. Newsom made a motion to approve the March 17, 2003 as corrected.  Mr. Revenaugh made the second to the motion.  The motion was carried.


Item 4 on the Agenda:  Communications from the Audience.




Item 5 on the Agenda:  PUBLIC HEARING:  Consideration of a Special Use Permit, 5940 N. Flora.  Applicant:  Creative Kids Learning Center.  (#1189)  City Council Public Hearing April 28, 2003.


Chairman Hill called on Assistant City Manager Scott Wingerson for the staff report.


Mr. Wingerson reported that the applicant is requesting to change ownership on the Special Use Permit, since they are non-transferable by ordinance.  The facility has been a day care for approximately 25 years and operating under a special use permit since 1997.  All the conditions in the draft ordinance are they same as previously approved by  the City Council except the ownership has  changed.  The recommended term is five years. 


Mr. Dillingham asked that regarding the five years, is that the way it was on the prior permit.


Mr. Wingerson answered that it was for five years and only four of those years had passed, so it would be a new five year term.


Chairman Hill asked if anyone representing the applicant was present.


Tina Dillon, 7511 N. Kentucky, Kansas City, Missouri addressed the Commission.  Ms. Dillon explained that she is in the process of trying to purchase Creative Kids.  She would like to continue to keep it in Gladstone and keep it a part of the community.  She would like to run it the same as it is with some improvements.  It needs to be painted and the yard needs to be cleaned up.  It will still be a licensed facility for under 50 children in a residential area.


Gay Byrom, 1764 Claywoods Parkway, Liberty, Missouri addressed the Commission.  Ms. Byrom stated that not only is she her realtor handing this transaction, but she is also her friend.  She knows that Tina’s heart is with kids.  Tina has an elementary education degree and has been a director at a daycare.  Her desire now is to not only be a director, but a director at a daycare that she owns.  Ms. Byrom hopes that the Commission extends this special use permit.


Mr. Evans enters the meeting at approximately 7:37 pm.


Chairman Hill closed the public hearing.


Ms. Abbott made a motion to approve the Special Use Permit for Creative Kids Learning Center.  Mr. Kiser made the second to the motion.


Roll Vote:            Ms. Abbott             Yes                               

                        Mr. Bone               Yes     

                        Mr. Kiser               Yes     

                          Mr. Dillingham            Yes     

Mr. Evans              Abstain         

Chairman Hill            Yes     

                          Ms. Newsom                      Yes

                        Mr. Revenaugh            Yes

                        Ms. Wild                Yes


                        (Yes-8, Abstain-1)








Item 6 on the Agenda:  Communications from the City Council and City Staff.


Councilman Beer reminded everyone to vote tomorrow.  He also stated that he is here tonight as a member of the Gladstone American Legion Post 626.  He told the story of the blue star service banner that was designed during WWI to recognize families that had members of their families on active duty.  The American Legion has now undergone an effort to resurrect use of the blue star banner.  He encouraged anyone who has family on active duty to contact him and he will be sure that they are presented with a blue star banner.


Councilman Rudi added that the American Legion does accept donations.  She also reminded everyone to vote tomorrow.


Councilman Smith said that in three years she has maybe missed one or two meetings but that she has really enjoyed coming to the Planning Commission meetings.  They are really the “heartbeat” and future of the City.  At the next meeting, the Commission will have a new City Council liaison.


Item 7 on the Agenda:  Communications from the Planning Commission Members.


Ms. Abbott said it was nice to have Becky back.


Mr. Evans apologized for his tardiness.  He encouraged everyone to vote tomorrow.


Ms. Newsom reminded everyone to vote tomorrow.


Mr. Dillingham welcomed Becky back and congratulated her.


Chairman Hill asked Mr. Wingerson what the status was of the dance studio and their sod. 


Mr. Wingerson replied that Chairman Hill is referring to Classical Ballet at 64th Street and N. Prospect.  He explained that for the longest time they had trouble obtaining permits from the Missouri Department of Transportation to install stormwater detention facilities underneath the parking lot on the east side of the building.  That work has since been done and they are being very slow at restoration.  Staff has worked with them endlessly on the erosion control to keep the mud off of N. Prospect and the side street.  Mr. Wingerson said that last week they were measuring for sod. 


Chairman Hill said that his concern is that we haven’t had much rain and the few times it has rained there has been significant silt on N. Prospect.  He closed by reminding everyone to vote.


Ms. Abbott asked Mr. Wingerson what the City is going to do about the Bell’s driveway.  There was water in their driveway this morning.  She asked if the builders are going to replace the drive because they were supposed to.


Mr. Wingerson answered that he is not sure of the current status, but that he will find out and give her a call. 




Item 8 on the Agenda:  Other Business:  Detached Building Ordinance.


Mr. Wingerson reported that there was a memo in the Commission’s packets dated April 2, 2003 regarding detached buildings.  This is a follow-up to a study session that came before the City Council.  The purpose of the memo was to continue the thought process.  Primarily the Council is interested in five areas which are outlined in the memo.  The first one has to do with a method of calculating the maximum size of a detached building as a percentage of lot area to address issues of scale and equity.  Second, the Council would like to exclude gazebos from the definition of detached building.


Mr. Wingerson explained that the third point is that the Council would the Commission to consider increasing the side and rear yard setback requirements based on size.  Mr. Wingerson cited some examples.  Fourth, the Council suggested adjusting the definition of maximum height to reduce the likelihood of two-story or 1 ½ story structures.  Finally, the Council asked the Commission to consider applying side yard setbacks to the placement of concrete or asphalt.  Currently, a driveway or patio may extend to the side property line.  The entire ordinance also needs some general “cleaning up” which will be done when it reaches final stages.


Mr. Wingerson also made reference to a letter that Ms. Abbott presented to the Commission earlier tonight that provides some additional information.  (see attached)  He mentioned that Ms. Abbott may want to go over her letter.


Ms. Abbott said that she didn’t see any point in elaborating on the letter she passed out.  She really feels that we have a percentage of lot size now and it’s not working.  She expressed her feeling that the City needs a stricter code regarding the size of a detached building.  If anyone wanted anything larger than 144 square feet, they can always ask for a variance. 


Mr. Wingerson said that he wants to be as clear as he can be on the five points that the Council brought up.  What Ms. Abbot just referred to is a lot coverage requirement.  A percentage of the entire lot can be covered by structures.  Currently that amount is 30%.  He agrees that it is not satisfactory.  What was suggested in September, and is an option for the Commission to consider, was to scale the size of a detached structure to the size of the house.  Mr. Wingerson cited some examples.  If a lot has a house that is 900 square feet, and the scale amount is 10%, that lot can have an accessory building that is 90 square feet.


Mr. Wingerson added that regarding Ms. Abbott’s point number three which suggests that staff doesn’t have the time to investigate these applications.  He remarked that staff would rather investigate the applications on the front end rather than process a variance request that involves board and community volunteers, significance expense to the applicant and a significant more amount of staff time than calculating the lot square footage or size of a building. 


Ms. Newsom mentioned a structure that has been erected on N. Prospect, just north of the fire station.  To her, it flies in the face of everything we are trying to do in Gladstone.  She asked Mr. Wingerson what regulations would we have in place if all this were passed to prevent something like that from being accepted.


Mr. Wingerson answered that first and foremost is the need for a building permit, which does not exist on that property.  That is the first tool.  The second being that the building is painted a dark blue on pressed board and the roof pitch is extremely high.  All the mentioned areas would be addressed in the proposed ordinance.  Unfortunately if the resident does not get a building permit we would be in the same situation as today.


Ms. Abbott had a hypothetical questions.  She would like to build a garage in her back yard.  She comes into Community Development with a sketch of her lot, which is 105’ X 90’.  The house and the garage are drawn on the sketch.  The house is 1450 square feet, her garage would be 144 square feet.  Ms. Abbott asked if that in that situation if she would be issued a permit at the time the application was submitted. 


Mr. Wingerson answered that she would need reasonable documentation showing that she is the owner of the property and that the measurements are somehow correct.  She probably would be issued a building permit over the counter; however, upon inspection if it was found not to comply or the application was mistaken in some way, it would be taken up at that time.  Either a variance would have to be applied for and granted or the structure would have to be relocated or whatever else would need to be done to make it comply.


Mr. Dillingham asked if the variance would go to the Planning Commission or the Board of Zoning Adjustment. 


Mr. Wingerson said that the way it is set up now it would be an appeal to the Board of Zoning Adjustment unless the Commission and Council would authorize a review period that involves a public hearing. 


Chairman Hill explained his thoughts.  On the first item, as far as utilizing some method.  His suggestion would be to have some kind of two-step restriction where a lot that is a certain size or below has a set size building that they can have as an out-building.  That way it simplifies enforcement because most residential lots would fall into that category.  Chairman Hill said that regarding gazebos, he feels that they can be excluded as long as they are under a certain size.  He commented that regarding the setbacks, if you qualify for the larger building, then the setbacks should definitely increase.  One way to resolve the issue of concrete driveways and patios would be to have the setback requirement apply to the concrete if there is an out-building. 


Chairman Hill asked Mr. Wingerson if he was wanting to come back with a draft ordinance for the Planning Commission to submit to the City Council.


Mr. Wingerson said that there is some more work to do and it is up to the Commission on how to proceed.


Chairman Hill suggested that possibly Mr. Wingerson could go to the City Council with some of the general ideas that have been presented tonight and see if that resolves their concerns.


Mr. Wingerson answered that he will get a memo to the City Council for their review noting the Commission’s ideas.


Ms. Newsom asked Chairman Hill if what he was proposing when he was talking about the driveways, is it if a driveway is leading to an out-building that it is okay to encroach upon the side yard setback. 


Chairman Hill answered that no, that was not was he was saying.  He stated that his thought was that if the garage was in the residence, then you would not look at if the driveway encroaches upon the side yard setback.  However, if someone’s going to building an out-building with a driveway leading to it, then the setbacks would apply.


Ms. Newsom said that a concern of hers is that when people pour a driveway to their side yard property line to park an RV on, it becomes very close to their neighbor’s house.  It could end up being parked there all winter long, impairing accessibility to the home for fire protection.  In addition, it would not be very appealing to look at.


Mr. Wingerson said that is a very valid point to look at.  From a zoning standpoint, it is an issue that staff talks with residents quite often about to help them resolve conflicts.  Open space is an important part of a neighborhood.


Mr. Dillingham asked that if we have a restriction on the lot and someone is building an out-building, wouldn’t another driveway really be pushing it.  He asked if the concrete would be included in the restriction on the size of the lot.


Mr. Wingerson answered yes.


Chairman Hill reviewed what the next step would be.  Mr. Wingerson would put something together to present at the next City Council study session.  Based on their feedback, then he can put together a draft ordinance, if there are still concerns with the Council, Mr. Wingerson can bring those concerns back to the Commission.


Item 9 on the Agenda:  Adjournment.


Chairman Hill adjourned the meeting at 8:12 P.M.



Respectfully submitted:


______________________________________    Approved as submitted _____

Becky Jarrett, Recording Secretary


______________________________________    Approved as corrected   _____

Brian Hill, Chairman