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Planning and Zoning Meeting Agendas and Minutes

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Planning and Zoning Commission Meeting

Meeting Agenda

Meeting Minutes

RECORD OF PROCEEDINGS

MINUTES OF THE PLANNING AND ZONING COMMISSION MEETING
CITY OF BALLWIN – 300 PARK DRIVE
October 3, 2005

The meeting of the Planning and Zoning Commission was called to order by Chairman Michael Boland at 7:00 p.m.  Members in attendance were:

PRESENT                                                                ABSENT 
Chairman Michael Boland                     Commissioner Ed Montgomery 
Commissioner Sue Heath                    Commissioner Jim Keefe 
Commissioner Frank Karr                   Alderman Jimmy Terbrock 
Commissioner Jeff Medler
Commissioner Ron Kadane 
Commissioner Tim Reisel  
Commissioner Don Walters 
Mayor Walt Young 
Assistant City Administrator Tom Aiken 
City Engineer Gary Kramer 
City Attorney Lou Lucchesi

Approval of Minutes

Mayor Young requested that the minutes of the September 6, 2005 meeting be amended for clarification.  Paragraph 3, page 3 was amended to read: “He said that the Commission should bear in mind that the Strategic Community Plan recommendation for this parcel is no longer applicable because of the changing economics of private recreational uses.  This change in the neighborhood had not been anticipated when the Plan was approved in 1997.” 

A motion was made by Commissioner Kadane and seconded by Commissioner Karr to approve the minutes of the September 6, 2005 meeting of the Planning & Zoning Commission as amended.  The motion received unanimous approval from the members present.

SUB 05-4—Subdivision Petition—Chavanel Subdivision (148, 152, 154 & 156 Barker Lane)—McKelvey Homes LLC, 218 Chesterfield Towne Centre, Chesterfield MO 63005—James G. Brennan, President

Mr. James Brennan, President of McKelvey Homes LLC, addressed the Commission, requesting approval for a 14-lot single-family subdivision on a four-parcel site of approximately 8.73 acres commonly known as 148, 152, 154 and 156 Barker Lane. 

Mr. Brennan introduced Jim Hall, president of Hall, Halsey & Associates, who described the community plan.  Mr. Hall described the site and surrounding neighborhood and zoning.  He stated that the site plan showed 14 detached single-family homes with lot sizes ranging from a minimum of 20,000 square feet up to a maximum of 33,500 square feet.  The average lot size is 22,453 square feet.  The petitioner is not requesting a change from the current zoning (R-1).  The developer is proposing a 50’ wide public right-of-way with 26’ of pavement, accessing off of Barker Lane and terminating in a cul-de-sac at the eastern end of the property.  A sidewalk is planned on both sides.  The street will meet all of Ballwin’s requirements for streets.

Mr. Hall said that the proposed stormwater detention basin will be on the northwest corner of the site, which is the lowest point on the parcel.  The petitioner feels that this is the best placement for the detention basin, not only from an engineering standpoint, but an aesthetic one.  He said the landscaping around the detention basin would be such that it would be hidden from the street.   Mr. Hall stated that the maintenance of the detention basin would be the responsibility of the subdivision trustees.

Mr. Hall spoke about the landscaping of the site, stating that the landscaping plan that was submitted showed many mature trees that will be retained, especially along the southwestern portion of the site.  Trees will be removed from the interior of the site.    The developer intends to comply with the 15’ no-grade zone on the perimeter of the site, extending the width up to 10 additional feet in some areas.

Mr. Hall showed a possible plan for incorporating a stub street, as required by ordinance, and its subsequent extension into the adjoining property.  He said, however, that would be disruptive to the landscaping and grading.  The petitioner feels that their plan represents a better development for the site.

Mr. Hall introduced Mr. Dan Wind, of Wind Engineering, who stated that the placement of the detention basin next to the street would be more beneficial in placing the sanitary sewer system and how it serves the homes in the development as well as the surrounding homes.  Mr. Wind stated that the detention basin is much larger than the City requires, because of MSD regulations.  He said that the proposed subdivision plan allowed the creek on the western side to remain in its natural state, rather than having to accommodate a stub street, which would require that the creek be piped.  Mr. Wind also stated that putting in a stub street would require significant grading.

Commissioner Kadane asked about moving the stub street closer to Barker Lane, between Lots #1 and #2.  Mr. Wind stated that if the connection of streets were placed there, it was uncertain how the southernmost portion of the neighboring parcel would be accessed.   He did acknowledge that less grading would be needed if that change were made.

Commissioner Kadane then asked about the retaining wall in the southwest corner of the site.  Mr. Wind stated that maintenance for the retaining wall would be the responsibility of the subdivision trustees. 

Chairman Boland asked if the retaining wall for the retention basin would be concrete.  Mr. Wind stated that it would be a decorative block wall.  Commissioner Walters asked what the drop would be from the top of the wall.  Mr. Wind stated that the lots would be five feet higher than the bottom of the wall.

Mr. Brennan addressed the Commission again, describing the style of the homes that will be built, stating the minimum size is 2200 square feet, up to more than 4,000 square feet.  He said that while the floor plans may be the same, no two exteriors are alike.  Mr. Brennan estimates that the prices will start in the high $400s, and go up to the $800s, because they do allow people to customize their homes. 

Mr. Brennan stated that they will make any changes to plan that are required by the City of Ballwin.  Commissioner Kadane asked about the grading plan for Lots 12-14, and how it will affect the trees there.  Mr. Hall agreed to modify their grading plan to save those trees.

Commissioner Medler referred back to the sketch showing the possible cul-de-sac on the adjoining property to the west.  City Planner Tom Aiken stated that what is shown is the right-of-way line, not a pavement line. 

Chairman Boland asked if the developer put in the stub street, would the lot sizes remain the same.  Mr. Hall replied that the average size of the lots would be smaller, but would still be at least the minimum 20,000 square feet.

Commissioner Kadane asked if the stub street is mandated by ordinance.  City Planner Aiken said that is it.  Chairman Boland said that he would like to hold the public hearing and then hold more discussion afterward.

Chairman Boland declared the public hearing opened and asked if there were any proponents to speak in favor of SUB 05-4.  The following residents addressed the Commission:

Steve Durst, 200 Barker Lane, owns the adjoining property on the west side, which is subject to a stub street.  He and his wife are comfortable with the proposed subdivision as presented, and don’t feel that the lack of a stub street will hinder future development on their property.  He would like a fence or a similar physical separation along his shared property line.

Mike Shepard, 144 Barker Lane, owns the adjoining property east of the proposed development.  He is concerned about the loss of trees and the runoff.  He would prefer a vegetation buffer rather than a white vinyl fence. 

Mel Cole, 151 Barker Lane, lives directly across the street from the proposed stub street.  He prefers that the detention basin be next to Barker Lane; he would rather look at the landscaping than the side of a house.  He is willing to provide an easement for the sewer line, and has spoken to the developer about connecting onto the sewer line.

There were no other proponents.  Chairman Boland then asked if there were any opponents to speak against the petition.  There were none.  Chairman Boland declared the public hearing closed.

Commissioner Kadane asked City Planner Aiken if this Commission has the authority to waive the stub street requirement.  Mr. Aiken stated that there is no language in the code that gives the Planning & Zoning Commission any discretion to do so.  He said that unless it can be demonstrated that the adjoining property cannot be developed, the ordinance requires the stub street.  At Commissioner Walters’ request, Mr. Aiken read the applicable code sections.

Mayor Young asked if the intent of the ordinance is that it must be presumed that the adjoining parcel will be developed or that it is possible, but may never happen.  City Attorney Lucchesi said that the Zoning Commission must follow the letter of the law in making its recommendation to the Board of Aldermen, who would have the discretion to make the decision on the stub street.

City Planner Aiken stated that, from a planning perspective, interconnecting to smaller parcels is imperative to minimize the number of cul-de-sacs.  He said cul-de-sacs are problematic for the City to maintain, as well as for the provision of emergency services.  Mr. Aiken stated that not requiring a stub street would be setting a precedent for other parcels in the City.

Commissioner Medler asked Mr. Brennan about the issue of the white vinyl fence bordering 144 Barker Lane on the east.  Mr. Brennan stated that the standard indentures for McKelvey prohibit any fence other than white vinyl when properties are adjacent to a busy street or an undesirable view.  He said that there is a natural buffer on that side of the property and that they plan to add more.

Commissioner Karr stated that while a stub street would not be aesthetically pleasing at this point, it does have the potential of enhancing the value of the adjacent property when it is connected through.  Mr. Brennan stated that it is better for the builder to provide as many cul-de-sacs as possible, and they would like for their plan to be considered as submitted.  He then stated that Mr. Wind informed him that the elevation change is 9’ rather than 5’.  City Planner Aiken asked if it was a natural drop or if it was designed that way.

Commissioner Walters asked about putting money in escrow in lieu of the stub street.  City Attorney Lucchesi said that under the ordinance, the Planning & Zoning Commission cannot recommend approval of the proposed subdivision without the stub street.

Commissioner Kadane made a motion to recommend to the Board of Aldermen that petition SUB 05-4 not be approved, because it does not conform to Section 25-102 of the Zoning Ordinance requiring a stub street; however, the Commission feels that the plan is acceptable from an aesthetic, grading, and tree preservation standpoint.  Commissioner Heath seconded the motion.  A roll call vote was taken with the following result:  Ayes – Boland, Kadane, Heath, Reisel, Karr, Walters, Young.  Nays – Medler.  The motion passed with a vote of 7-1.

Z05-4—Zoning Ordinance Change—R-4 Recreation Fees—City of Ballwin

City Planner Thomas Aiken addressed the Commission, at the request of the Board of Aldermen, recommending that the R-4 district provisions be modified to eliminate the developer’s option to dedicate 15% of the land to the City for recreation and require them to pay a fee in lieu of the dedication.

Commissioner Medler made a motion to recommend approval of petition Z05-4 to the Board of Aldermen.  Commissioner Reisel seconded the motion.  The motion received unanimous approval from the members present.

Planning & Zoning Commission Appointees to the Comprehensive Community Plan Steering Committee

Chairman Boland confirmed with City Planner Aiken that the firm Arcturis has been engaged by the City to work with the Comprehensive Community Plan Steering Committee.  Mr. Aiken said that Arcturis has been approved by the Board of Aldermen subject to negotiating a scope of work. 

Chairman Boland stated that two members of the Planning & Zoning Commission would sit on the Committee along with two members of the Board of Aldermen and eight residents of Ballwin.  He said that as Chairman of the Planning & Zoning Commission, he felt it would be appropriate for him to sit on the Committee.  Mayor Young made a motion to recommend that Mike Boland and Frank Karr be appointed to the Committee.  Commissioner Kadane seconded the motion.  The motion received unanimous approval from the members present.

City Planner Aiken handed out brochures for Planning & Zoning courses, and said that there was money in the budget if the members of the Commission would like to attend one or more of the course modules. 

Adjournment

 A motion was made by Commissioner Kadane and seconded by Commissioner Medler to adjourn the meeting.  The motion received unanimous approval.  The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 p.m.

Michael Boland, Chairman
Planning & Zoning Commission