Granville Board of Zoning & Building Appeals Minutes
September 11, 2008
Members Present: Jean Hoyt, Amber Mitchell (Chair), Jeff Gill, Fred Ashbaugh, and
Member’s Absent: None.
Also Present: Alison Terry, Village Planner, Assistant Law Director, Allison Crites, Kevin Reiner, Bill and Carrie York, Debbie Troutman, Garret Moore, and Nancy Recchie.
Oath of Office: Rob Montgomery was administered the Oath and Office and appointed as a member of the Board of Zoning and Building Appeals.
Election of a new Vice Chair:
Mr. Gill made a motion to appoint Fred Ashbaugh as Vice Chair.
Mr. Ashbaugh accepted the nomination.
Roll Call Vote: Gill (yes), Ashbaugh (yes), Montgomery (yes), Hoyt (yes), Mitchell (yes). Motion carried 5-0. Fred Ashbaugh is appointed Vice Chair to the Board of Zoning and Building Appeals.
Description of Procedure:
Ms. Mitchell explained the proceedings of the board and that the meeting is not a public hearing, yet that the meeting is open to the public and it is a quasi judicial proceeding.
She stated that the BZBA has thirty days to make a decision and any appeals are heard by Village Council. Any witness offering testimony or presenting evidence at a hearing shall be placed under oath prior to offering testimony or evidence.
Jeff Darbee and Nancy Recchie, 1125 Newark-Granville Road, Application #08-112
Open Space District (OSD)
The request was for approval of a variance to reduce the required side yard setback on the west side of the property from fifty feet (50’) to fifteen feet 10 inches (15’10”) and the required rear yard setback on the north side of the property from fifty feet (50’) to twenty-one feet (21’), for a 3-season room addition.
Ms. Mitchell swore in the following people who wished to testify:
Alison Terry, Nancy Recchie, and Bill York
Nancy Recchie stated that they purchased the home with plans to use it as a summer home and they hope to use it more this coming Fall and next Spring. She explained that the building pre-dates the zoning and setback requirements and they did obtain a lot split when they acquired the property. Ms. Recchie stated that the property is zoning Open Space District.
Bill York, 100 Pren Tal Way, stated that they are the relevant neighbors who will be impacted by this application. He stated that the addition will not move towards the direction of the Goldblatt’s or the Pfau’s home and it will only come closer to his property. Mr. York stated that there were trees removed so there are no trees between the proposed porch and his property, except some trees that are located on his lot. Mr. York suggested that the applicant find a different direction to expand the porch. He also stated that the proposed addition will double the size of the porch. Ms. Recchie stated that it will not double in size. Mr. York stated that something smaller could possibly be done. Mr. York explained that the property is a sloping piece of land and the structure will appear to get taller and taller because it is further off the ground. He went on to say that it is not a high priority area since it will be located in the back of their lot. He also stated that he currently has a view of torn screens and ladders located in the rear of the property. Mr. York stated that they request that the applicant change the plans and not come so close towards their property or consider painting the structure a dark brown or green with some landscaping. Ms. Recchie stated that they do plan on doing some landscaping for shielding. Mr. Gill asked Mr. York if his primary concern is sound or visual affects. Mr. York answered that with Ms. Recchie and Mr. Darbee he is not worried about sound, but he also wants to consider that they may not always be the people who own the property. Mr. York stated that they want to be good neighbors and their first choice if the structure is expanded is to have the addition across the back width rather than the length. Ms. Recchie stated that they would like to continue the one story roof line and she stated that it is much more costly if they change the roof line – plus they would lose windows in their living room and kitchen that offer natural light throughout the home. Ms. Recchie explained that they did have a tree fall on the property this past summer and they are in the midst of having this cleaned up. She agreed that the loss of the tree increases exposure and their home is more visible. Ms. Recchie added that they are certainly willing to plant evergreens, but it may take a few years for them to grow. She added that they have no plans to sell the property. Mr. Gill asked if a darker color and landscape screening would help. Mr. York stated yes. Mr. Montgomery asked if there is a reason the applicant is requesting to have the structure in the back, rather than on the side. Ms. Recchie stated that the lighting for the interior of the home would be affected and she would prefer to not change the gable roof. Mr. Gill stated that it sounds as though there is a developing compromise. Mr. Ashbaugh asked if the newly proposed porch is the size of the existing home. Ms. Recchie stated no that the porch is 16’x32’. Ms. Hoyt asked if the BZBA can approve with condition that additional landscaping be put in. Ms. Terry stated yes. Mr. Gill asked what the ramifications would be if in one year there are no evergreens installed. Assistant Law Director Crites stated that their office would take action because it’s a violation of the permit that was issued. Ms. Terry added that a Certificate of Occupancy is required for the structure and they would issue a temporary Certificate until the evergreen trees are planted. Mr. York asked Ms. Recchie if there is a shade she would be willing to change the paint color to. Ms. Recchie stated that they would probably have to do a green color since the roof is green and she stated that the body of the building would still be white. She later stated that they could use same color as the stable doors – a green color. Ms. Recchie stated that she would have no problem accommodating Mr. York’s request to paint the structure a dark color and add additional landscaping. Mr. Ashbaugh stated that the motion to approve the application could specify that the applicant must paint the structure a dark color and install landscaping. He added that Ms. Recchie could plant smaller trees which cost less. Mr. York stated that dark purple is a dark color and he would hate to see this as the chosen color on the structure. Ms. Mitchell stated that Ms. Recchie has verbally said that she would be using an existing green color already located on the stable doors. Mr. Gill added that he would hate to specify a color in the motion because it would be hard for the Village to oversee/manage. Assistant Law Director Crites cautioned against specifying a specific hue.
The BZBA reviewed and read aloud the following Findings of Fact during their discussion of Application #08-112:
a) That special circumstances or conditions exist which are peculiar to the land or structure(s) involved and which are not applicable to other lands or structures in the same zoning districts. Each member of the BZBA agreed that this statement was true. Mr. Montgomery stated he agreed because of the new zoning that was imposed after the structure was in place.
b) That a literal interpretation of the provisions of this Zoning Ordinance would deprive the applicants of rights commonly enjoyed by other properties in the same zoning district under the provisions of the Ordinance. Each member of the BZBA agreed that this statement was true.
c) That the special conditions and circumstances do not results from the actions of the applicant. Each member of the BZBA agreed that this statement was true. Mr. Gill stated that they did not create the situation and they are therefore asking for a variance.
d) That the granting of the variance will not confer on the applicant any undue privilege that is denied by this Ordinance to other lands or structures in the same zoning district. Each member of the BZBA agreed that this statement was true. Mr. Gill stated a “slightly more equivocal true” response to the statement. Mr. Montgomery noted that there is also a garage at the corner of the lot line.
e) That the granting of the variance will in no other manner adversely affect the health, safety and general welfare of the persons residing or working within the vicinity of the proposed variance. Each member of the BZBA agreed that this statement was true.
Mr. Gill made a motion to approve Application #08-112 with a qualification that the applicant agree to paint the structure a darker earth tone and for the color to be reviewed by village staff; And that appropriate plantings to include evergreens be brought to bear over the next year which will accomplish the overall purpose of screening the addition from the adjoining property. Seconded by Mr. Ashbaugh. Roll Call Vote: Ashbaugh (yes), Gill (yes), Montgomery (yes), Hoyt (yes), Mitchell (yes). Motion carried 5-0. Application #08-112 is approved with the above stated conditions.
Keith and Courtney McWalter, 223 East Elm Street, Application #08-113
Village Residential District (VRD), Architectural Review Overlay District (AROD)
The request was for approval of a variance to reduce the required eastern side yard setback from ten feet (10’) to nine feet (9’) for installation of a generator. Kevin Reiner, Firmly Planted, is representing the owners of the property – Keith and Courtney McWalter.
Mr. Heim swore in the following people who wished to testify:
Alison Terry, Garret Moore, Debbie Troutman, and Kevin Reiner.
Kevin Reiner, Firmly Planted, stated that he is representing the property owners – Keith and Courtney McWalter. He stated that the generator was originally proposed to be placed on the other side of the structure, but they decided that they would like to tuck it into the nook depicted on the drawings. Mr. Reiner stated that the manufacturer recommends that the generator be placed three feet away from the structure. He added that the generator will be used to keep the pipes safe. Mr. Reiner stated that a more aesthetically pleasing fence has been approved and it will help shield the generator. Mr. Reiner added that the property owners certainly want to accommodate the neighbors any way they can and they will also shield the generator with some boxwoods. When asked by the Planning Commission, Mr. Reiner explained that the generator will need to run once a week for fifteen minutes and this can be pre-programmed in the system. He also stated that there are noise buffer panels on all sides.
Mr. Ashbaugh presented paperwork he printed off of the internet that stated the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards - NFPA – 37 – Paragraph 4.1.4. Mr. Ashbaugh said that the information states that these generator units are supposed to be five feet away from the house. He went on to explain that these standards normally only apply if a community adheres to NFPA standards. Mr. Reiner stated that they are working with Clay’s Electric and their recommendation was to have it three feet away from the home and he stated that this was also the manufacturer’s recommendation. Mr. Ashbaugh asked if Licking County adheres to these standards. Ms. Terry stated that they allow generators, but she is not certain if they adhere to the NFPA recommendations. Mr. Ashbaugh stated that some people are putting their generators far away from their house. Ms. Terry stated that she could research what the building department recommendations are. Ms. Terry stated that the applicant could choose to table the application so they can further research the information. Mr. Reiner asked if the county standards have been implemented here in Granville. Ms. Terry stated that all of our work goes through the Licking County Building Department. Ms. Mitchell asked if there would be any liability on the Village if the variance is approved and the generator were to catch on fire or catch another structure on fire. Ms. Terry stated that she is aware of no liability on the Village by approval of the variance. Assistant Law Director Crites stated that the BZBA Board can address any safety factors when reviewing the criteria. Mr. Montgomery asked the applicant if they ever considered putting the generator behind the house. Mr. Reiner stated that they did consider putting it to the east of the home. Ms. Hoyt questioned if the NFPA standards take precedence over the building code. Mr. Ashbaugh stated that in some municipalities he would think the NFPA standards prevail. Mr. Reiner agreed he would like to table the application to gather more information.
Garret Moore, 207 South Pearl Street, stated that his main concern with the generator is the noise. He said that his bedroom is on that side of the property where the generator would be located. He went on to say that there would not only be one generator but also two air compressors and this will undoubtedly be very loud. Mr. Moore stated that a neighbor around the corner has a generator that cycles once a week and he hears it. Mr. Moore went on to say that the request for generators will come before the Village more and more and he asked them to please consider the noise and safety. Mr. Ashbaugh asked Mr. Moore if he would prefer to see the generator installed in the rear of the home. Mr. Moore stated that he would prefer it to be located on the west side and this is probably twenty to thirty feet away from the house on the west side.
Debbie Troutman, 205 South Pearl Street, stated that her concerns are similar to what Garret Moore stated. She stated that the back yard is quite substantial and larger than the area on the side of the home. She went on to say that a variance would not be required if the generator were to be placed in the rear. Ms. Troutman stated that Kevin Reiner and the McWalters have been fantastic working with the neighbors. She stated that they have a patio outside and she feels her living quarters would be impacted by the installation of the generator on the east side. Ms. Troutman stated that she feels it could be located elsewhere - even by the outbuilding in the far corner of the lot and this would be out there away from the neighbors. Ms. Hoyt asked if there is any existing AC unit in this location now. Ms. Terry stated that there was one and now there are two. Mr. Ashbaugh asked if Ms. Troutman feels moving the unit would be more appropriate. Ms. Troutman stated yes. Mr. Montgomery asked if a variance would be required if the unit were placed in the rear. Ms. Terry stated that if the applicant moves the generator then it wouldn’t require a variance and they could have the applicant withdraw the application. Ms. Hoyt asked if it would be costly to rearrange the plans to place the generator elsewhere. Mr. Reiner stated that he didn’t think so and he would like to check with the certified electrician. Mr. Ashbaugh stated that the generator would have to be within thirty feet of the panel – if there is not an extension. Ms. Terry reviewed the plans and showed the BZBA potential locations. Mr. Montgomery asked if a variance would be required to place the generator on the west side. Mr. Reiner stated no. Mr. Montgomery stated that if the county does enforce the NFPA standards then the applicant may need to look at putting the unit in the back or west side of the house.
Mr. Montgomery moved to Table Application #08-113. Seconded by Ms. Hoyt.
Roll Call Vote: Montgomery (yes), Gill (yes), Ashbaugh (yes), Hoyt (yes), Mitchell (yes). Motion carried 5-0. Application #08-113 is Tabled.
Finding of Fact
The Board of Zoning and Building Appeals found the request to be consistent with The Granville Codified Ordinances Chapter 1147, Variances and Chapter 1165, Open Space District, and hereby give their approval of the application.
Mr. Gill moved to approve the Findings of Fact for Application #08-112. Seconded by Ms. Hoyt.
Roll Call Vote: Ashbaugh (yes), Gill (yes), Montgomery (yes), Hoyt (yes), Mitchell (yes). Motion carried 5-0. The Findings of Fact for Application #08-112 are Approved.
Approval of the Minutes
August 14, 2008
Mr. Gill made a motion to approve the minutes as presented. Seconded by Mr. Ashbaugh.
Roll Call Vote: Gill (yes), Hoyt (abstain), Ashbaugh (yes), Montgomery (abstain), Mitchell (yes). Motion carried 3-0. The minutes are approved as presented.
Motion to Adjourn
Mr. Ashbaugh made a motion to adjourn. Seconded by Mr. Gill. Motion carried 5-0. The meeting adjourned at 8:20 PM.
October 9, 2008