OSHTEMO CHARTER TOWNSHIP

ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS MINUTES

July 20, 1998

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Agenda

PEOPLE’S CHURCH - SITE PLAN AMENDMENT TO ALLOW FOR USE OF APPROX. 846 SQ. FT. OF EXISTING CHURCH BUILDING AS A PUBLIC PRESCHOOL (KALAMAZOO CO. HEAD START) - 1758 N. 10TH ST.

RETZ, PAUL - VARIANCE FROM 10’ SIDELINE SETBACK RE: ACCESSORY BUILDINGS - 3493 N. VAN KAL AVENUE

KECK, EUGENE - VARIANCE FROM 20’ SIDELINE SETBACK RE: ACCESSORY BUILDINGS - 3420 SOUTH 9TH STREET

HOSPICE OF GREATER MICHIGAN - SITE PLAN AMENDMENT - PROPOSED INSTALLATION OF 40’-HIGH FREESTANDING TV ANTENNA, AND ADDITIONAL MODIFICATIONS - SE CORNER MAPLE HILL DRIVE & CROYDEN AVENUE

SEE MAP _____________________________________________________________________________

A meeting was conducted by the Oshtemo Charter Township Zoning Board of Appeals on Monday, July 20, 1998, commencing at approximately 3:00 p.m. at the Oshtemo Charter Township Hall, pursuant to notice.

MEMBERS PRESENT:

Brian Dylhoff, Chairperson
Thomas Brodasky
William Saunders

MEMBERS ABSENT:

David Bushouse
Lara Meeuwse

Also present were Mike West on behalf of the Planning and Zoning Department, Scott Paddock, Ordinance Enforcement Officer, Robert C. Engels, Township Attorney, and approximately five (5) other interested persons.

CALL TO ORDER

The Chairperson called the meeting to order at 3:05 p.m.

MINUTES

The Board considered the minutes of the meeting of July 13, 1998. Mr. Brodasky moved to approve the minutes as submitted, and Mr. Saunders seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

PEOPLE’S CHURCH - SITE PLAN AMENDMENT TO ALLOW FOR USE OF APPROX. 846 SQ. FT. OF EXISTING CHURCH BUILDING AS A PUBLIC PRESCHOOL (KALAMAZOO CO. HEAD START) - 1758 N. 10TH ST.

The next item was the application of Allene Dietrich, representing People’s Church, for site plan amendment to allow for use of approximately 846 sq. ft. of the existing church building as a public preschool (Kalamazoo County Head Start). The subject site is located at 1758 North 10th Street and is within the "R-2" Residence District zoning classification. Ms. Dietrich is past president of the congregation. She believed that the addition of the Head Start program classroom would provide a valuable social and educational function for the County.

The report of the Planning and Zoning Department is incorporated herein by reference.

The Chairperson noted that the change in use was for only a portion of the church building, and Mr. West stated, if there was expansion beyond what had been requested, People’s Church would have to come back for further approval. There is plenty of parking.

The Chairperson said that operation of the Head Start program would be from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

There was no public comment offered, and the public hearing was closed.

There was no discussion by the Board members.

Mr. Brodasky moved to approve the site plan amendment to allow for the use of approximately 846 sq. ft. of the existing church building as a public preschool with the following reasoning:

(1) That no exterior or interior changes or modifications to the subject site are proposed.

(2) That the applicant proposes the use of the previously approved building, access drive arrangement, on-site parking facilities, outdoor lighting, dumpster/enclosure location and landscaping/greenspace arrangement.

(3) That no additional on-site signage is proposed.

(4) That the previously approved parking arrangement is adequate to accommodate use of the subject site.

(5) That the site plan amendment is subject to the review and approval of building plans, along with site inspections, by the Township Building Department and Fire Department to insure compliance with all applicable codes and regulations.

Mr. Saunders seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

 

RETZ, PAUL - VARIANCE FROM 10’ SIDELINE SETBACK RE: ACCESSORY BUILDINGS - 3493 N. VAN KAL AVENUE

The next item was the application of Paul Retz for variance approval from the 10' sideline setback requirement as it applies to accessory building established by Section 64.200 of the Zoning Ordinance. The subject site is located at 3493 North Van Kal Avenue and is within the "AG"-Rural District zoning classification.

The report of the Planning and Zoning Department is incorporated herein by reference.

Mr. West referred the Board to the survey map, which shows the location of the proposed 30’ x 40’ x 10’ pole building. A residence was constructed on the subject property in 1992. The survey shows a proposed 5’ setback from the west property boundary line.

Mr. West cited past decisions dating back to 1986 and indicated that appeals were generally granted when the setback abutted a utility right-of-way, the request involved the extension to a pre-existing-building line and/or the request was in character with the surrounding area.

The applicant was present. He pointed out that there is a 6’ porch on the front of the pole barn and, in order to accommodate that, he would need to cut down more trees if the setback was more than 5’. He said the west property line is the County line. The pole building is 19’ from grade to the peak. Based upon the applicant's representation of building orientation, Mr. West concluded that a 14' setback from the property line would be required by Ordinance.

The applicant stated that there is a utility line approximately 150’ from the property. The right-of-way for the power line goes across the west side of the property, and the power lines are in Van Buren County. The applicant’s property does not abut the power line. A Van Buren County neighbor owns the acreage that is between the applicant’s property and the utility right-of-way. The applicant noted that, in the northeast, the property drops off quickly and becomes very marshy, which makes it difficult to locate the building to the northeast.

Mr. Brodasky inquired about moving the building 10’ east, and the applicant stated that he would have to put in fill and take out a large tree. The Chairperson noted that the 150’ access to the property located immediately to the west of the subject site would have to come off Van Kal.

Mr. West stated that the 150’ area is in Almena Township and he is not sure what Almena Township requirements are for road frontage.

Mr. Brodasky was concerned about setting a precedent as the Retz property does not abut the right-of-way.

The Chairperson stated that relief could be possible if the property between the subject site and right-of-way was nonbuildable.

The applicant stated that the proposed location lines up with the driveway, and that is why he wants the building located there rather than somewhere else on the property. He said he could live with a 10’ setback but he would have to drop the porch.

Mr. Saunders inquired if the applicant knew who owned the property to the west.

The applicant said he did know who owned the property and had attempted to purchase it, but the owner did not want to sell.

Mr. West suggested that the relationship between the subject site's western boundary and the right-of-way may provide the Board with additional information for consideration. If the Board was in agreement, Mr. West suggested tabling the item to the meeting of August 3, 1998, to allow for time to acquire property information from neighboring Almena Township.

Mr. Brodasky stated that he would like the additional information.

The Chairperson stated that the Board now would have trouble granting a variance but, if it was found that the property immediately west of the subject site was unbuildable, there could be a different result.

Mr. West stated that staff would get the information from Almena Township.

There was discussion about possibly turning the building, but to do so would result in a greater setback requirement.

Mr. Brodasky moved to table the variance request to the meeting of August 3, 1998, with the Board having information at that time regarding the disposition of the property between the applicant’s property and the utility right-of-way.

Mr. Saunders seconded the motion, and the motion carried unanimously.

 

KECK, EUGENE - VARIANCE FROM 20’ SIDELINE SETBACK RE: ACCESSORY BUILDINGS - 3420 SOUTH 9TH STREET

The next item was the application of Eugene Keck for variance approval from the 20’ sideline setback requirement as it applies to accessory building established by Section 64.300 of the Zoning Ordinance. The subject property is located at 3420 South 9th Street and is located within the "C" Local Business District zoning classification.

It was noted that the applicant had requested that this matter be tabled to the meeting of August 3, 1998, to allow for proper noticing of the variance request.

Mr. Saunders moved to table the variance request to the meeting of August 3, 1998.

Mr. Brodasky seconded the motion, and the motion carried unanimously.

 

HOSPICE OF GREATER MICHIGAN - SITE PLAN AMENDMENT - PROPOSED INSTALLATION OF 40’-HIGH FREESTANDING TV ANTENNA, AND ADDITIONAL MODIFICATIONS - SE CORNER MAPLE HILL DRIVE & CROYDEN AVENUE

The next item was the application of Larry Harris of L.L. Harris & Associates, representing Hospice of Greater Michigan, for site plan amendment for the proposed installation of a 40’-high freestanding TV antenna, and additional modifications to the originally approved site plan. The subject site is located at the southeast corner of Maple Hill Drive and Croyden Avenue and is within the "R-4" District zoning classification.

Mr. West stated that there were two modifications being requested from the original site plan. The first was the exclusion of a portion of the previously approved asphalt walkway along the west side of the building. The Township Fire Department looked at the site and determined that the elimination of that portion of the asphalt walkway would not compromise fire protection.

The second amendment was to allow for the location of a 40’-high freestanding television antenna within the southeast portion of the site. The antenna is not deemed a communications tower under the Zoning Ordinance. Mr. West noted that Chi-Chi’s and Carlos Murphy’s had made similar requests under the same provisions in the Ordinance, their requests having been granted.

Larry Harris was present on behalf of Hospice and explained that the amendment regarding the asphalt walkway was caused by the discovery of extremely thick layers of topsoil in that area. It had been discovered that topsoil had been placed in the parking area prior to acquisition of the site. That topsoil had to be removed and replaced when the building was approximately 70% complete. This was at great expense to Hospice.

The intention of the pathway was to have an 8’-wide area along which a resident’s bed could be pushed to allow the residents to appreciate the natural view in that area. It had never been contemplated that it would be needed for fire protection. Mr. Harris stated that Hospice might come back in the future and ask for the asphalt walkway to be approved.

The request for the location of the television antenna was for location in an area where there were more trees, which would be better for both Hospice and the neighbors.

The Chairperson noted that all setbacks were way beyond what was required.

There was no public comment offered, and the public hearing was closed.

Mr. Saunders moved to approve the site plan amendments to allow for the proposed installation of a 40’-high freestanding television antenna and the elimination of a portion of the asphalt walkway on the west side of the building, with the following conditions, limitations and notations:

(1) That no changes to the previously approved access management and/or on-site parking and site circulation arrangements were proposed or approved.

(2)    That the proposed television antenna shall not be utilized for any form of signage.

(3) That the proposed television antenna setbacks comply with Ordinance standards.

(4) That no changes to the previously approved dumpster, outdoor lighting and/or on-site signage         were proposed or approved.

(5) That no changes to the previously approved landscaping arrangement were proposed or            approved.

(6) That variance approval has not been requested.

(7) That approval is subject to the review and approval of the Township Fire Department.

Mr. Brodasky was concerned about the 40’ height of the antenna and queried whether it should be restricted to television antenna only.

Mr. West stated that the antenna design and height were very limiting for potential co-location of additional antennas.

The motion was seconded by Mr. Brodasky and carried unanimously.

 

ADJOURNMENT

There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 3:50 p.m.

Minutes Approved:
August 3, 1998