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PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES

JULY 26, 2005


1. CALL TO ORDER AND ROLL CALL: Chair Balen called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. Chair Balen and Commissioners Cutter, Milligan, Meatzie and Power answered the roll. Commissioner Perry was excused. A quorum was present.
2. CITIZEN COMMENTS AND CONCERNS: None.
3. COMMISSION COMMENTS AND CONCERNS: None.
4. MINUTES: The Commission considered the minutes from the June 28, 2005 meeting. Commissioner Meatzie moved to approve the minutes as presented. Commissioner Milligan seconded, and the motion carried unanimously on a voice vote.
5. CORRESPONDENCE: None.
6. PUBLIC HEARING - Case File 1-S-PC-05, Land & Sea Investments, LLC: Chair Balen opened the public hearing, calling for abstentions, conflict of interest, bias, or ex parte contact. None were declared.
  Staff Report: Mr. Lewis reviewed his written report, noting that there had been three letters received in regard to the application. One letter concerned storm drainage, another cited concerns regarding sewer size and capacity, and the third was in regard to general concerns about the development, including traffic impact and police/fire protection. The latter two letters were distributed to the Planning Commission at the meeting, and Mr. Lewis indicated he had responded to the letter regarding storm drainage separately. Mr. Lewis stated that the sewer capacity had been originally designed for a buildout of 280 lots, and this application combined with the existing subdivisions only came to 210 lots. Additionally the City was currently working on the South Sewer project, which is also intended to increase capacity and alleviate loading on the sewer system. In regard to the park and park assessment fee, the City had determined that the property the applicant had designated for park purposes was not desired by the City, and the full park assessment fee of $52,402.68 would be required. Mr. Lewis noted that the applicant had asked to pay the park assessment fee in phases, and the City has agreed to allow this. A revised final page of the staff report had been distributed to the Commission to show this breakdown. He indicated the applicant anticipated beginning Phase 1 this year, with Phase 2 in 2006 and Phase 3 in 2007.
  Applicant’s Presentation: Dawn Pavitt, representing Land & Sea Development, LLC, addressed the Commission. She reviewed the application and noted that the developers were local people with an interest in the community. The property which had been designated for park purposes would either become an additional lot, or would be incorporated into the existing lots in Phase 3. She noted that the design was intended to provide connecting access to parks and open space in a pedestrian-friendly manner. The applicant was not asking for any variances to the City’s Code requirements, and the streets would be designed to emulate the existing streets, which were 50' wide with a 35' driving surface, and curbs, gutters and sidewalks included. Mr. Lewis confirmed that the City’s Transportation Plan identified Range Drive as a Class “A” collector street, even with the anticipated full build-out of the abutting properties. Ms. Pavitt asked to submit the information from the Transportation Plan into the record.
  Chair Balen cited a concern regarding the length of the as-yet unnamed street ending in a cul-de-sac in Phase 2 of the proposal. Commissioner Power echoed the concern, noting that it could be a potential problem as residents at the end would have no means of exit in case of emergency. A brief discussion ensued regarding the park property and whether it would be an additional lot or would be incorporated into the existing lots in Phase 3.
  Opponent’s Presentation: The following persons addressed the Commission regarding concerns about the proposed subdivision: Juli Dahl, Jerry Hughes, Scott Perkins, Kay Englund, Lynette Sproul, Norm Streeter, Rita Abbott, Robert Anderson, Rosemarie DeSola, Alan Canfield, Barbara Davis, Lois Golden, Jeff Mullican, and several other citizens. The concerns expressed included access by school busses and safety of children, ability to negotiate cul-de-sacs by emergency vehicles as well as residential traffic, impact of additional traffic on Range Drive, whether the land would be completely cleared or trees left, and whether a green belt or buffer zone would be provided.
  Applicant’s Rebuttal: Ms. Pavitt responded to the concerns by stating that the School District reviews their routes yearly, the applicant would not be involved in that process. The easement from the existing sewer line, plus the topography would allow for a “green belt” to the property directly abutting the northwest corner. The applicant will have to do necessary grading for roads and lots, the lots would be sold to individual property owners who would then determine placement of their homes and the amount of clearing that would be done. However, there are some restrictions on tree-cutting contained in the proposed CC&R’s, and a buffer zone around the riparian zone has been provided for as well. The proposed hammerhead and cul-de-sacs are designed according to fire department standards. The City’s Transportation Plan identified Range Drive as a Class “A” collector street in consideration of the full potential buildout of the area. The applicant was proposing sidewalks on both sides of the street, and connecting pathways to the City’s park areas. The proposed density of the development was only 38% of the maximum buildout of the area, and there would be a mixture of manufactured homes and site-built homes. Ms. Pavitt confirmed that a geotechnical report would be done on any property that required one.
  Additional questions regarding the removal of trees, the access to the property and the condition of Range Drive, and the City’s refusal of the park property were asked by Linda Mullican, Virginia Hafner, Barbara Davis and Jeff Davis. Ms. Pavitt responded that the applicant would try to protect as many of the trees as they could, and the proposed green belt and buffering of the riparian area would minimize the impact of the development. The applicant would be willing to work with the City in trying to access the property by an additional road from Crestline Drive through the City’s park property if that could be done. In regard to the park property, it was noted that the fees that would be paid would assist the City in developing its existing park property. Mr. Lewis also explained that City staff would be reviewing the phases of the development as well as individual building permits for compliance with Code requirements.
  Deliberations: Chair Balen closed the public hearing and opened the Planning Commission meeting for deliberations. Chair Balen noted that the developer had heard the concerns of the citizens present, and hoped that these would be taken into consideration in the development of the subdivision. Chair Balen indicated that the Planning Commission could recommend that the City Council look at improvements on Range Drive and long-term alleviation of traffic problems. He stated that the layout of the development had good design ideas and elements, and felt it would fit well with the existing developments in the area. Commissioner Cutter encouraged the audience to lobby the Council in regard to improvements to Crestline and Range Drive, cautioning though that property owners along Crestline Drive have encroached into the City’s right-of-way and may be somewhat upset when the City eventually does install sidewalks. He expressed concern regarding traffic eventually accessing the Norwood Heights area from this subdivision and the negative impact that may have on the Norwood/Starr/Highway 101 intersection, and also commented on the length of the long street ending in a cul-de-sac in Phase 2 of the proposed subdivision. Commissioner Cutter indicated he appreciated the fact that the Commission was not asked to consider any variance from the Code in this application. Commissioner Milligan noted that putting another road through to Crestline might not be a bad idea, and suggested that the applicant consider widening the path into the park area to 20'. She noted that the mixture of manufactured and site-built homes were much-needed in the area, as affordable housing was becoming more scarce. Commissioner Meatzie indicated that he remembered when Range Drive was only gravel. He had no concerns regarding Phase 1, and indicated he would like to see additional access to Crestline Drive as part of Phase 2, though that may not happen. Commissioner Power wondered if the Commission would receive updated plans for Phases 2 and 3, and Mr. Lewis responded that the first step was the tentative approval, each phase would have to come back to the Commission for final approval.
  Commission Cutter moved to approve the subdivision application, including the recommendations contained in the staff report. Commissioner Milligan seconded, and the motion carried unanimously on a voice vote. Consensus of the Commission was to have Chair Balen sign the findings when they were drafted.
7. DISCUSSION/ACTION ITEMS:
  A. Planning Report: It was noted that the written report was contained in the packet materials.
  B. Other Issues: Nothing further.
8. ADJOURNMENT: At 8:35 p.m., there being no further business to come before the Commission, the meeting was adjourned.
Respectfully submitted,
Reda A. Quinlan, City Clerk
APPROVED by the Planning Commission this 23rd day of August, 2005.
SIGNED by the Chair this 23rd day of August, 2005.
Samuel Balen, Chair