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Planning and Zoning Meeting Agendas and Minutes

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Planning and Zoning Commission Meeting

Meeting Agenda

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Meeting Minutes

RECORD OF PROCEEDINGS
MINUTES OF THE PLANNING AND ZONING COMMISSION MEETING
CITY OF BALLWIN – 300 PARK DRIVE
October 5, 2009

The meeting of the Planning and Zoning Commission was called to order by Chairman Mike Wind at 7:00 p.m.  Members in attendance were:
 
PRESENT                                                                    ABSENT
Chairman Michael Wind                               Commissioner Pat Buehrle
Commissioner Pat Apel                               Secretary Frank Karr
Commissioner John Schwent                    Alderman Jimmy Terbrock
Commissioner Mark Weaver 
Commissioner Chris Wright 
Mayor Tim Pogue  
Assistant City Administrator Thomas Aiken 
City Engineer Gary Kramer 
City Attorney Robert Jones 

Approval of Minutes

A motion was made by Commissioner Weaver and seconded by Mayor Pogue to approve the minutes of the September 15, 2009 meeting of the Planning & Zoning Commission as submitted.  The motion re-ceived unanimous approval from the Commission members present. 

SUE 09-6 – Special Use Exception Petition (Front Yard Parking)
  Westridge Elementary School, 908 Crestland Drive, Ballwin MO  63011
  Petitioner:  Mr. Arthur Floyd, Rockwood School District, Eureka MO 63025

Mr. Steve Smith, project manager of Glenn Construction, addressed the Commission.  Glenn Construction manages all matters related to construction and permitting for Rockwood School District. 

Mr. Smith said that the parking lot project is being paid for with savings from the Rockwood School Dis-trict’s 2009 summer projects, which were funded by the 2008 bond issue.  He said this is a small parking lot that is being built on soil that is in good condition.  It will not carry the heavier vehicles such as buses and delivery trucks.  Mr. Smith said that using pervious pavement and meeting MSD’s requirements would add over 50% to the cost of the project.  He said that the Rockwood School District is unable to commit to that amount for this project.

Chairman Wind asked if the savings from expenses not incurred, such as the cost of building a detention basin, were considered.  Mr. Smith said that the recommendations of the petition review report did not require detention.  Mayor Pogue said that the district was requesting a detention waiver and Ballwin ordi-nances can require detention at first drop.  He said Alderman Suozzi indicated to him that Cherry Hills subdivision has had flooding problems with this creek in the past. 

Mayor Pogue said that the reasons Mr. Smith gave for not using a pervious surface are the very reasons this site would be ideal to do so.  Mr. Smith said that in order to use the pervious surface, they will have to build a “tub” full of gravel to put the pavement over.  Mayor Pogue said it would have to go 18” deep, approximately 8-10” more than for a standard asphalt parking lot.
Mr. Smith said that he understands pervious surfaces are going to become the standard, and future project planning will have to take that into consideration.  He said at the time of application for this special use exception, the petitioner was not aware that it would be required for this project.  The budget was set at that time and cannot be increased.  Mayor Pogue asked if the district has looked into the cost of providing detention.  Mr. Smith said they have not, because they didn’t know it would be required.  He said it is a small parking lot and will only add a small amount of additional runoff.  Mayor Pogue said it is additional runoff into an area with existing problems.

Mr. Smith respectfully disagreed. He said this petition is still pending before the Commission, and re-quested a positive recommendation.  He said the petitioner will follow the recommendations of the peti-tion review report to add trees, use 4” of asphalt, and complete the swale to the City’s satisfaction.  These are the conditions under which the petition was initiated. 

Chairman Wind reopened the public hearing and asked if there were any proponents wishing to speak in favor of the petition.  There were none.  Chairman Wind asked if there were any opponents wishing to speak in opposition to the petition.  There were none, and the public hearing was closed.

Mayor Pogue made a motion to recommend denial of Petition SUE 09-6 to the Board of Aldermen due to the lack of storm water control. Commissioner Apel seconded the motion. A voice vote was taken with the following results:  Aye – Wright, Schwent, Apel, Pogue; Nay – Wind, Weaver.  The motion passed 4-2.

SUE 09-4 – Special Use Exception Petition  (Site Plan Amendment)
  U-Haul, 14767 Manchester Rd., Ballwin MO  63011
  Petitioner:  Mr. Stephen D. Langford, 12060 Lusher Rd, St. Louis MO 63138

Mr. Mark Doering, president of Doering Engineering, addressed the Commission, requesting approval for the petition.  He introduced Mr. Steve Langford of U-Haul corporate headquarters in St. Louis. 

Mr. Langford presented the petition to the Planning & Zoning Commission.  He said the original special use exception was requested ten years ago.  He said this was a new venture and the first in West County for U-Haul.  The original SUE allowed for 25 parking spaces, which has proven to be insufficient, espe-cially during the summer months.  Mr. Langford said he received a citation in May for having too many vehicles on the property in violation of the SUE.  At that time, he decided to proceed with the petition for a site plan amendment. 

Mr. Langford said the proposed 21 additional spaces, along with the current improvements, represents about a quarter of an acre, which leaves a majority of the site undeveloped.  In addition to the 21 new parking spaces in the back, Mr. Langford is requesting a restriping to allow three additional spaces in the front.  Mr. Langford said there are five homes that are adjacent to his property.  He said he met with the four neighbors who would be most impacted by the proposed parking spaces to address their concerns.

Mr. Langford said this location is the only one that serves the residents in West County.  The closest U-Haul locations are in Overland, University City and at Kingshighway and I-44.  He talked about U-Haul Corporation’s sustainability initiatives and how much greenhouse gas would be generated if people had to travel to these other locations.

Mr. Doering described the site and said the petitioner is requesting a total of 53 parking spaces and stor-age of a maximum of 65 units.  No additional lighting will be installed.  Mr. Doering said that it is impor-tant to U-Haul Corporation that sustainable pavement be used for the proposed parking lot.  The petitioner proposed installing a 6-8” thick gravel base, topped with a geomesh plastic, and then covered with a layer of clean gravel, all tamped and rolled in.  Stormwater would run through the gravel lot.  Any runoff not absorbed into the ground would run to the underdrain system and be directed to the storm sewer or deten-tion basin.
Mayor Pogue asked if the petitioner is now proposing a compacted gravel parking lot instead of a paved parking lot.  Mr. Doering said yes, but it is much more than that.  He said he will provide the specifica-tions for what is being proposed.  Mayor Pogue asked Planning Director Aiken about ordinances regard-ing parking lots.  Mr. Aiken said that Ballwin’s current ordinances do not allow granular parking lots.  The ordinance would have to be amended to allow what Mr. Doering described. 

Mr. Doering said that stormwater detention will be provided per Ballwin and MSD standards.  He said there is an underground detention basin on the site.  Mayor Pogue asked if the petitioner has the calcula-tions showing that the detention basin is adequate for the amount of additional runoff that will be gener-ated by the proposed asphalt parking lot.  Mr. Doering said he does not.  He said if it needs to be ex-panded, the petitioner will do so.

Mayor Pogue asked Mr. Langford if it is correct that this U-Haul store received three citations on May 22, 2009.  Mr. Langford said that is correct.  Mayor Pogue asked about the status of those citations.  Mr. Langford said he has been to court twice, and the judge has given him a continuance for the result of this Planning & Zoning Commission meeting.  Mayor Pogue said that Mr. Langford is currently not in com-pliance, because there is an illegal storage unit in front of the building.  Mr. Langford said he will have it removed immediately.  Mayor Pogue said that with this U-Haul store’s history of non-compliance, what assurance does the City have that the additional parking will ensure compliance in the future?  Mr. Lang-ford said that he now has ten years of history on which to base his parking needs, and the addition of the proposed parking lot will absolutely be adequate.

Chairman Wind asked what the average number of units is moving in and out of the site in a week.  Mr. Langford said 25 units.  Commissioner Weaver asked if all the units are in good working order.  Mr. Langford said they are.

Chairman Wind asked if the petitioner agrees with the petition review report recommendation to plant trees and shrubs between the fence and the sidewalk.  Mr. Langford agreed to do abide by those recom-mendations.  Chairman Wind asked if the petitioner is proposing any sort of barrier to keep traffic out of the proposed lot when the business is closed.  Mr. Langford said there was no plan to do so, but he would be willing to put something in place if it is seen to be needed.

Chairman Wind opened the public hearing and asked if there were any proponents wishing to speak in favor of the petition. 

Walt Young, 634 Lemonwood Drive, said he supports the proposal.  He feels the petitioner needs the proposed additional parking.  He asked why the pervious surface proposed by this petitioner is not acceptable when the previous petitioner was asked to provide a pervious surface.  Mayor Pogue said that this proposal is for compacted gravel rather than pervious asphalt or concrete.  Mr. Young feels that requiring a pervious surface without having it in the ordinances is unfair to the petitioners. 
 
Chairman Wind asked if there were any opponents wishing to speak in opposition to the petition. 

Ronald Reed, 132 Timka Drive, is opposed to the petition.  He said the petitioner has been out of compliance with the provisions of the SUE from the beginning.   

Jess Newton, 110 Timka Drive, said making a left turn onto Manchester Rd from U-Haul is danger-ous.

Wally Zuchowski, 103 Timka Drive, said he lives across the street from U-Haul and the fence does not block the view of the vehicles on the lot.   He feels that U-Haul should not be allowed to have a gravel parking lot when residents are not allowed to have gravel driveways.

There were no other opponents, and the public hearing was closed.

Mr. Doering said that U-Haul had more business than was projected when they first opened in Ballwin, and now know that the proposed lot will fill their needs.  He said the Planning & Zoning Commission should defer to the City Engineer in regards to the paving surface.  He said the fence would be continued at a level that will conceal the units parked on the lot.  He asked that the Commission vote on the petition on its merits as a site plan.

Chairman Wind asked Planning Director Aiken if there have been non-compliance issues brought to the City about U-Haul over the last ten years.  Mr. Aiken said there have been issues from the beginning.  He said there have been many verbal communications with the managers over the years, which resulted in short-term compliance.  The instances of non-compliance always occur again.

Mayor Pogue said he appreciated the petitioner looking into using a pervious surface for the proposed lot; however, what they are proposing is not allowed at this time.  If the petitioner does not use a pervious surface, it still needs to demonstrate that the underground detention is adequate for the additional amount of runoff.

Mr. Doering said that the Planning & Zoning Commission does not have the expertise to verify his calcu-lations regarding detention and stormwater runoff.  That is the responsibility of the City Engineer and MSD.  He said the petitioner is seeking conceptual approval at this meeting, and will meet all the standard of the City of Ballwin and MSD for stormwater runoff.

Planning Director Aiken said that Mr. Doering has worked in Ballwin before and knows that this is not the way petitions are handled in Ballwin.  The Planning & Zoning Commission is not giving conceptual approval; the Commission will not have another opportunity to look at this site plan.  It is routine practice that calculations are done per Ballwin and MSD standards and submitted to demonstrate that detention will be done or is currently sufficient.  If further adjustments need to be made per MSD at the final ap-proval stage, it will be resolved at that time.  Mr. Aiken urged the Commission to be satisfied that all re-quirements are met before making a recommendation on the petition.

Chairman Wind said he would like to get the question of the pervious pavement resolved before the Plan-ning & Zoning Commission forwards the petition on to the Board of Aldermen.  City Attorney Jones said right now the plan shows 8361 feet of new asphalt.  Is this not the petitioner’s plan?  Mr. Doering said it was the initial plan; however, in light of the importance of sustainability to both the City and U-Haul Cor-poration, the petitioner is open to revising the plan accordingly.

Mayor Pogue made a motion to table Petition SUE 09-4 until the November meeting of the Planning & Zoning Commission to give the petitioner time to prepare the necessary stormwater computations and decide what it is proposing. Commissioner Wright seconded the motion, which received unanimous ap-proval from the Commission members present.

Adjournment

A motion was made by Chairman Wind and seconded by Mayor Pogue to adjourn the meeting.  The mo-tion received unanimous approval, and the meeting was adjourned at 8:20 p.m.

 Michael Wind, Chairman
 Planning & Zoning Commission