March 17, 2008
Present:Ms. Newsom Council & Staff Present:
Ms. Alexander Les Smith, Mayor
Mr. McCullough Carol Rudi, Councilman
Mr. Garnos Scott Wingerson, Assistant City Manager
Mr. Shevling David Ramsay, City Attorney
Mr. Whitton Chris Helmer, Planning Specialist
Ms. Abbott Melinda Mehaffy, Economic Dev. Admin.
Chairman Hill Becky Jarrett, Administrative Assistant
Absent: Ms. Babich
Item 2 on the Agenda: Pledge of Allegiance.
Chairman Hill led the group in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mayor Smith presented each Planning Commission member with an acrylic plaque depicting the new community center. He stated that on behalf of the City Council he would like to thank them for their role in the community center becoming the jewel of the Northland.
Item 3 on the Agenda: Approval of the January 22, 2008 minutes.
MOTION: By Ms. Newsom, second by Ms. Alexander to approve the January 22, 2008, minutes as submitted. The minutes were approved as submitted.
Item 4 on the Agenda: Communications from the Audience.
Item 5 on the Agenda: PUBLIC HEARING: On a request for a Special Use Permit at 7508 N. Oak Trafficway. Owner/Applicant: Antonio Scire. File #1312.
Mr. Helmer began by reporting that the purpose of this special use permit is to allow the applicant to operate a business outside of the allowed zoning. In reviewing this application, the main issues are with following the regulations in the Zoning Ordinance for setbacks. There are other deviations from current City code involving the gravel drive as well. Mr. Helmer stated that the other issues largely fall on uncertainty of the site and lack of a site plan submittal regarding signage and other land development improvements. Mr. Helmer added that another consideration of the Planning Commission this evening is appropriateness of land use and long-term viability and economic success of the corridor. He said that staff is not recommending approval of this application and that he would be glad to answer any questions at this time.
Chairman Hill called the applicant to come forward.
Salvatore Scire, 811 NE 81st Street, Kansas City, Missouri, 64118, addressed the Commission. Mr. Scire stated that he is the owner's son. He stated that his father has been the owner of this piece of property and has operated it under the name of Springtime Garden Center for twenty-five years. In the last several years it has been operated under a family member under North Oak Garden Center and now his father would like to rechurn ownership and the business operator of the location. He has several years of experience in garden center; however, the City does have some standards that they would like his father to meet. The driveway is one issue. It is a business opportunity for his father…and then with the business and as it progresses and as business funds become more available land site development opportunities are something that they do seek to improve upon. Mr. Scire said that he knows that one issue was a fence that was knocked over. It was an auto claim accident and his father has already repaired it. Right now the business is unoccupied and the land is unused. Providing a business here locally for Gladstone residents will improve people's outlook on N. Oak and the whole City of Gladstone. If there are standards… working with the City his family feels that is something they would like to accomplish and slowly, year in and year out that is something they would work with.
Ms. Newsom asked if there was a plan. She remembers when the Ryan's came forward they had a drawing and a plan of how they intended on developing the business over a period of time.
Mr. Scire said no, there is not a set plan right now. Their goal right now is to re-open the location and make this a successful year and then with their downtime they would also like to work on land development. He said there is a small building that they are using as customer cashiering. They would like to perhaps build a permanent site on that, but that would be in the future. It is a business opportunity for his family and it would be something…they are just hoping for a successful year in profit and then for the next year they can look forward to utilizing that money that they have grossed to seek those land developments.
Chairman Hill asked for those in favor to come forward. There was no response. He then called for those in opposition. Again there was no response.
Chairman Hill said he wanted to confirm with Mr. Helmer that there were no plans submitted with the application.
Mr. Helmer replied that what the Commissioner's received in their packet is all the application consisted of, which was a staff report.
Chairman Hill asked what the term of the special use permit is.
Mr. Helmer said that the Ryan's were operating under a five-year request and that was after a one or two-year permit. Staff did not move forward with a time request because of the recommendation being denial.
Chairman Hill closed the public hearing.
Ms. Abbott said that they had some lovely flowers up there even though they were not up to code she would have said it was an asset to the community, but that was the Ryans. This is a different ownership. She would imagine the sales tax was a fair amount.
Ms. Newsom said she really enjoyed the Ryan's Garden Center. When Anna and her husband came forward they had a plan and they had dreams of what they wanted to do with the property. They had it written down with time frames. Her understanding is that health conditions did not permit them to keep it open this last year and that is a loss to the community. Ms. Newsom feels that if the community is to move forward and match the vision of what people want they need to see a plan in place and some sequential idea of what is going to take place before they would issue a special use permit. Without a written plan she cannot be in favor of it.
Mr. Shevling said he would ditto those comments.
Chairman Hill agreed and added that his concern is that there is nothing being presented tonight to judge whether the applicant would be complying with the basis for them to authorize a special use permit. The other issue is that he hates to take a piece of land that is in a reasonably prime location within the City that could possibly be developed into a higher and better use and continually allow a special use which prevents the ultimate development of that property into a permanent structure. Chairman Hill remarked that he could not favor this type of permit without any commitment to make any improvements on the property.
MOTION: By Ms. Newsom, second by Mr. Shevling to approve the Special Use Permit at 7508 North Oak Trafficway.
Ms. Newsom No
Ms. Alexander No
Mr. McCullough No
Mr. Garnos No
Mr. Shevling No
Mr. Whitton No
Chairman Hill No
The motion failed. (0 Yes, -8 No)
Item 6 on the Agenda: Communications from the City Council and City Staff.
Councilman Rudi said that Councilman Beer could not be here tonight due to out of town company. She also said that Mr. Shevling was present at the last meeting, but it was the night that the Commission met in the conference room, and he couldn't find them.
Mr. Wingerson said that the Commission received at their places a notice for public hearing on April 7th having to do with Tower Plaza and AutoZone. He explained that the text amendment that the Commission considered several months back was ultimately approved by the City Council clearing the way for a site plan revision.
Mr. Helmer said that the first work on the Atkins-Johnson Farm has been completed, which was a complete rehabilitation of the front porch as well as a roof replacement and gutter replacement. The comprehensive plan draft will be forthcoming. An open house-type information meeting will be planned for the final update.
Item 7 on the Agenda: Communications from the Planning Commission Members.
Election of Officers
Ms. Alexander nominated Mr. Hill for Chairman. Ms. Newsom made a motion to cease all nominations and that Chairman Hill be elected by acclimation. Ms. Abbott gave the second.
Ms. Newsom nominated Mr. Shevling for Vice-Chairman. Ms. Newsom made a motion to cease all nominations and that Mr. Shevling be elected by acclimation. Ms. Abbott gave the second.
Ms. Abbott nominated Ms. Newsom for Secretary. Ms. Alexander made a motion to cease all nominations and that Ms. Newsom be elected by acclimation. Mr. Shevling gave the second.
Ms. Alexander commented on seeing a letter to the editor in the Kansas City Star making the point as the highways are widened they are going to not put some of the billboards back up, but they might have some lighted billboards like we have here.
Ms. Abbott asked how permits were issued for the outbuildings at 6403 N. Michigan and 2204 NE 72nd Street.
Mr. Wingerson answered that the house on Michigan actually received a variance from the Board of Zoning Adjustment. This particular project is a poster-child for the First Tier Suburbs Coalition Idea Book developed by MARC. This movement basically says that in order to keep quality people in your community you have to upgrade your housing stock to a period of time that's acceptable to the homeowner. All the modern conveniences: the garages, the offices, the updated kitchen, the master bedroom with a bathroom- all those types of things. That is probably Gladstone's best example of how converting a post WWII home to today's environment can be accomplished.
Mr. Wingerson said that the permits for the project issued at 2204 NE 72nd Street were completely valid and met every requirement of the City. It is set back off the street probably 100' and is actually an addition to the existing home to make a ;L; complex. Part of the story is that the reason the owner built that addition is because of complaints of his R.V. being stored outside. So because he got tired of code enforcement writing him up every couple of months, he built a $100,000 addition on to his house primarily to house his R.V. Mr. Wingerson thinks that when that project is complete and landscaped the scale will come back to something that is more moderate than what it looks right now.
Ms. Abbott also mentioned that her neighbor lives by someone with a lot of clutter in their yard and they were in court a couple of weeks ago for leaving lumber in their yard. She went on to explain that the judge said that there was nothing he could do about the clutter on the front porch because Gladstone doesn't have a clutter ordinance.
Mr. Wingerson said that the Code Enforcement Department is trying to research and develop some language that would make sense from an enforcement standpoint, be constitutional and help the judge enforce anti-clutter. He said that is the third case he has heard of like that.
Ms. Newsom said that Chairman Hill made a statement tonight that might be a good benchmark; which was ;development needs to be permanent and beneficial.; Special use permits have enabled small businesses to do what they can, but sometimes enabling is not always a good thing.
Item 8 on the Agenda: Adjournment.
Chairman Hill adjourned the meeting at 8:10 pm.
______________________________________ Approved as submitted _____
Becky Jarrett, Recording Secretary
______________________________________ Approved as corrected _____
Brian Hill, Chairman