Employment Opportunities Event Calendar
Pay Online Pay Utility Bill
Town Logo

Plan Commission Meeting Minutes and Recordings 2020

Meeting Minutes

01-07-2020 Plan Commission

January 7, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Tuesday, January 7, 2020, at 7:00 p.m. and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Yolanda Cardona, Jon Gill, Donna Little, Nancy Wohland, and John Kennedy. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer. Mr. Eberly noted that he excused Mr. Kraus from this meeting since there were no petitions in front of the board.

(Note: One appointee was unable to accept the position; the Town Council will be appointing a replacement at their January 8, 2020 Special Meeting.)

Mr. Kennedy declared a quorum.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Gill made a motion to approve the December 4, 2019 meeting minutes; seconded by Ms. Cardona. Motion carried unanimously.

ELECTION OF OFFICERS:

President:
Mr. Birlson nominated John Kennedy; Mr. Gill seconded the nomination. Hearing no further nominations, Mr. Kennedy called for a roll-call vote: Mr. Birlson, aye; Ms. Cardona, aye; Mr. Gill, aye; Ms. Little, aye; Ms. Wohland; aye, Mr. Kennedy, aye. Nomination carried unanimously; Mr. Kennedy was elected the President.
Vice President:
Mr. Gill nominated Bob Birlson; Ms. Cardona seconded the nomination. Hearing no further nominations, Mr. Kennedy called for a roll-call vote: Mr. Birlson, aye; Ms. Cardona, aye; Mr. Gill, aye; Ms. Little, aye; Ms. Wohland; aye, Mr. Kennedy, aye. Nomination carried unanimously; Mr. Birlson was elected the Vice President.
Executive Secretary:
Ms. Wohland nominated Donna Little; Mr. Gill seconded the nomination. Hearing no further nominations, Mr. Kennedy called for a roll-call vote: Mr. Birlson, aye; Ms. Cardona, aye; Mr. Gill, aye; Ms. Little, aye; Ms. Wohland; aye, Mr. Kennedy, aye. Nomination carried unanimously; Ms. Little was elected the Executive Secretary.
Appointment of Recording Secretary:
Mr. Gill made a motion to appoint Margaret Abernathy to be the Recording Secretary; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.
Appointment of Plan Commission Member to the BZA:
Ms. Cardona made a motion to appoint Nancy Wohland to the BZA; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Mr. Kennedy called for a roll-call vote: Mr. Birlson, aye; Ms. Cardona, aye; Mr. Gill, aye; Ms. Little, aye; Ms. Wohland; aye, Mr. Kennedy, aye. Motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

None was had.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. PLAN COMMISSION TRAINING
The members of the board, Mr. Eberly, Attorney Decker, and Mr. Panczuk briefly introduced themselves and spoke a bit about their backgrounds.

Mr. Eberly provided the members a hard copy of the Town’s Zoning Ordinance, Subdivision Control Ordinance, and Comprehensive Plan and noted that those are available electronically.

Mr. Eberly conducted a training session utilizing a PowerPoint Presentation; Key points included:

  1. IC 36-7-4-100 through 1699 contains the Indiana Code regulating the Plan Commission’s actions. The Zoning Ordinance and the Subdivision Control Ordinance contain the local regulations.
  2. Duties include preparing and amending the Comprehensive Plan, Zoning Ordinance, and Subdivision Control Ordinance; approving or denying plats of subdivision; making recommendations to the Town Council on rezoning requests and impact fees; and assigning addresses to a plat, which is typically done by a developer’s engineer and reviewed by Mr. Kraus and Mr. Eberly to ensure correct address order.
  3. Primary plat approval; adoption of or amendments to the Comprehensive Plan, Zoning Ordinance, and Subdivision Control Ordinance; and rezoning all require a public hearing. Note, ordinance changes and rezones require a recommendation to the Town Council, who then makes the final decision.
  4. Public hearings require public notice to be advertised in the Times and Post Tribune; letters to be sent to adjacent property owners within 300 feet of a subject parcel; and a sign posted on the property at least 15 days prior to the public hearing. St. John’s requirements exceed the State’s, which only requires a 10-day notice, publication in one newspaper, does not require a posted sign, and adjacent property owner notification is left up to the municipalities.
  5. Site plan approval and secondary plat approval only requires a public meeting not a public hearing. As long as the secondary plat substantially conforms to the primary plat, that approval is a ministerial act.
  6. General public comment and public hearing comments both require a person interested in speaking to state their name and address and speak only to the board itself.
  7. Actions taken at the meetings must receive a vote of the majority of the Plan Commission membership; thus at least four members must vote to approve or deny any request.
  8. Continued or deferred public hearings do not require public notice to be made anew, it is considered noticed by virtue of being deferred or continued at the original public hearing.
  9. The Plan Commission has exclusive jurisdiction over subdivision platting.

Multiple scenarios were presented to reinforce the topics covered, then a QA session ensued.

Mr. Kennedy advised the board members to take time and sit with Mr. Eberly if they have questions on any agenda items. He cautioned that the job can be difficult at times because the board must follow the rules and regulations set forth and make hard decisions that may conflict with public opinion.

Mr. Eberly explained the difference between a Study Session and a Regular Meeting.

Attorney Decker provided materials to the board to help prepare them for situations they may encounter. He explained concrete standards and how they apply to decision making for primary plat approval; advised approving a plat that meets all the requirements is a ministerial act; and noted if the Town Council fails to act within 90 days on any recommendation from the Plan Commission, that proposal is defeated.

Attorney Decker advised, while there is no statutory prohibition for a Plan Commission regarding ex-parte communications, it is best to avoid it and further advised that a conflict of interest should be disclosed if a member has or may have either a direct or indirect a financial interest in any matter in front of the board.

Mr. Panczuk stated his policy on ex-parte communication is to share information that is already public knowledge or to discuss what has been discussed in a public meeting. Mr. Panczuk advised using Mr. Eberly’s petition summaries of agenda items for guidance, cautioned that rezoning can have a very significant impact on the town, and asked the members to study plats carefully to ensure those plats follow our ordinances. He stressed that he is not a fan of waivers and that consistency with adhering to our rules helps developers know what to expect.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Gill made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously; the meeting adjourned at 8:43 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

01-15-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

January 15, 2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Special Meeting to order on Tuesday, January 15, 2020, at 7:00 p.m. and led all in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: Nancy Wohland. Mr. Kennedy noted that Ms. Wohland informed him she would not be present. A quorum was attained.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

A. 2020-0001 REZONING OF 111 +/- ACRES EAST OF CLINE AVENUE BETWEEN 101ST AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE – Rezone from R-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
Mr. Eberly advised that all notices are in order. Mr. Kennedy advised that this public hearing is for rezoning 111 +/- acres east of Cline Avenue and between 101st Avenue and 109th Avenue; the petitioner, St. John Plan Commission, is seeking to rezone 111 +/- acres of land that was annexed into town on January 1, 2020 from R-2 PUD to R-1 Single Family; the land had been zoned R-2 PUD as part of the annexation that was approved by the 2019 Town Council.

Mr. Panczuk recommended that the Public Hearing be deferred until the March 4, 2020 meeting due to ongoing litigation. Mr. Kennedy advised the public that the comments for this rezone will be had when the public hearing is continued due to the litigation; however, anyone wishing to speak will be able to do so during Public Comment.

Ms. Cardona made a motion to defer this Public Hearing to the March 4, 2020 meeting; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

B. 2020-0002 REZONING OF 40 +/- ACRES ON THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF WHITE OAK AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE -- Rezone from RC-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this public hearing is for rezoning 40 +/- acres on the northwest corner of White Oak Avenue and 109th Avenue; the petitioner, St. John Plan Commission, is seeking to rezone 40 +/- acres of land that was annexed into town on January 1, 2020 from RC-2 PUD to R-1 Single Family; the land had been zoned RC-2 PUD as part of the annexation that was approved by the 2019 Town Council. Mr. Eberly stated that this Public Hearing would be ready to proceed as well; however, this matter is similar to the first matter and would likely need to be deferred as well. Mr. Panczuk confirmed the same.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer this matter to the March 4, 2020 meeting; Ms. Cardona seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

None was had.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Mr. Kennedy advised the public on the three-minute time limit and opened the floor for Public Comment.

Jim DeBoer (10655 Bell Street, Crown Point) – Mr. DeBoer spoke in support of rezoning the 111-acre subdivision from R-2 to R-1, stating that 350 homes is better than over 700 homes. He disapproves of R-2 zoning due to the small lot sizes, increased traffic, and the lack of green space or trails.

Dennis DeVito (10341 Silver Maple Drive): Mr. DeVito read from two prepared remarks. Said prepared remarks are attached hereto and made a part thereof as Exhibit Nos. 2020-01-15-PC1 and 2020-01-15-PC2.

Nick Crnokrak (10656 Bell Street, Crown Point): Mr. Crnokrak stated that he was prepared to read for parts A and B but will reserve those comments for the March 4th meeting and thanked the board for giving the public an opportunity to address them. Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Crnokrak would consider turning in his prepared remarks so the Plan Commission members can read them ahead of time. Mr. Crnokrak agreed to do so. Said remarks are attached hereto and made a part thereof as Exhibit No. 2020-01-15-PC3.

Kevin Chase (10647 Cranberry Drive): Mr. Chase thanked the board for having the courage to take this back on and reverting it back to an R-1. He stated that there are issues at Cline Avenue and US 231 and this subdivision will make it a worse safety issue if it is allowed to go through.

James Guritz (7715 W 101st Avenue, Crown Point): Mr. Guritz stated that the 111 acres is behind his house and that there is a problem with flooding because of the existing Gates of St. John subdivision that should be handled before developing more land. He asserted that less houses would be better but no houses would be best. Mr. Guritz stated that he is concerned with traffic; however, his biggest concern is stormwater.

Donald Barman (7910 W 109th Avenue): Mr. Barman stated that the drainage issue started when Lotton installed a storm sewer into their field tile on the Barman Farm property. He thanked the board for reconsidering this matter and is opposed to R-2 zoning. Mr. Barman stated that the traffic is a mess at Cline Avenue and US 231 and indicated that there isn’t enough ingress and egress for what is proposed. Mr. Barman offered his assistance to the Plan Commission.

Having no one else wishing to speak, Mr. Kennedy closed Public Comment.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Gill made a motion to adjourn; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously; the meeting adjourned at 7:24 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

01-15-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting Exhibits.pdf
01-15-2020 Plan Commission Study Session

January 15, 2020 Plan Commission Study Session Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Study Session to order on Wednesday, January 15, 2020, at 7:28 p.m.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: Nancy Wohland. Mr. Kennedy noted that Ms. Wohland informed him she would not be present. A quorum was attained.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. 2020-0003 WHITE OAK AND 109TH DEVELOPMENT – Introduction of RC-2 PUD Single-family Development Plan – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a discussion regarding the development of 40 acres of property on the northwest corner of White Oak and 109th Avenue. The petitioner plans to introduce an RC-2 PUD single-family development plan.

Mr. Tim Kuiper, on behalf of John Lotton, LBL Development, LLC, described the property. Subdivision plans were filed on December 31, 2019 for single-family homes in an RC-2 PUD development that will consist of 78 lots. Mr. Kuiper indicated that discussion has been had with staff about installing a trail in lieu of sidewalks leading into the Olthof Subdivision; otherwise, they will put in sidewalks along 109th Avenue and White Oak Avenue. Mr. Kuiper asserted that the subdivision meets the requirements of the Subdivision Control Ordinance, the ordinance for the zoning on the property, and the annexation agreement for the property.

Mr. Kennedy asked how many acres are environmentally sensitive. Mr. Kuiper responded that he does not have an exact number but that it is the southwest corner of the property.

Mr. Eberly explained the difference between an R-2 PUD and an RC-2 PUD for the edification of all present and stated that an RC-2 PUD allows a developer to cluster homes in order to avoid environmentally sensitive areas.

Mr. Kuiper stated that they would request permission to advertise at the February Regular Meeting.

B. 2020-0004 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of R2 PUD Single-family Development Plan, Unit 24 and Part of Unit 25 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a discussion regarding The Gates of St. John East; the petitioner plans to introduce an R-2 PUD single-family development plan for Unit 24 and part of Unit 25.

Mr. Kuiper advised that this item, as well as the next two, are all part of what is being referred to as the Gates East lying east of Cline Avenue. Mr. Kuiper noted that this part of the plat, which contains 38.557 acres, lies south of what was approved at the December 5, 2019 meeting and meets the requirements of the Subdivision Control Ordinance, the ordinance for the zoning on the property, and the annexation agreement for the property.

Mr. Birlson asked if this zoning has already been approved. Mr. Eberly responded in the affirmative. Mr. Kraus asked what the big lot in the southwest corner is to be used for. Mr. Kuiper responded that there are currently buildings there that they want to preserve.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there is connectivity to the south. Mr. Kuiper responded in the negative.

Mr. Birlson asked if this is part of the 111 acres. Mr. Kuiper responded in the affirmative.

Ms. Little expressed concern for the lack of green space.

C. 2020-0005 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of R2 PUD Single-family Development Plan, Units 27 and 28 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a discussion regarding The Gates of St. John East; the petitioner plans to introduce an R-2 PUD single-family development plan for Units 27 and 28.

Mr. Kuiper noted that this area provides the northern leg for the bike path and complies with the requirements of the Subdivision Control Ordinance, the ordinance for the zoning on the property, and the annexation agreement for the property.

Ms. Cardona asked if they are seeking Primary Plat approval in March. Mr. Eberly responded in the affirmative and explained that the Public Hearing they are requesting is for a Primary Plat approval of these units.

Mr. Kennedy noted that Mr. Kraus will have to review the plats. Mr. Eberly confirmed the same.

D. 2020-0006 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of R2 PUD Single-family Development Plan, Unit 22 lots 2249 through 2258 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a discussion regarding The Gates of St. John East; the petitioner plans to introduce an R-2 PUD single-family development plan for Unit 22, Lots 2249 through 2258.

Mr. Kuiper stated that this is an amendment to the Primary Plat, approved in December, changing some of the lots as well as the lot lines inside the drainage area.

Mr. Kennedy informed the board that the average lot size equals 11,200 square feet for the entirety of the subdivision, including the property that was already in town and the property that was just annexed into town.

Mr. Kraus advised that area has not been approved yet for those lots and needs to be submitted for review.

Mr. Birlson asked for clarification if each lot had to meet the 11,200 lot size. Mr. Eberly responded in the negative and explained that the 11,200 square feet is the average lot size for all lots collectively.

Mr. Kennedy asked if Lot 2461, the large lot, is included in the average. Mr. Eberly responded in the affirmative and stated that there is also a large lot on the northeast corner of the annexed area that is roughly 7.5 acres that also counts towards the average lot size.

Ms. Little asked how many lots there would be in the entire plan. Mr. Eberly responded that it will be 600 lots, plus or minus. Mr. Kuiper stated that he believes it is 615 lots at this time.

E. THE GATES OF ST JOHN – Revised Letters of Credit for Pods 7E, 7F, 9B, and 17B – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a discussion regarding The Gates of St. John, Pods 7E, 7F, 9B, and 17B; the petitioner has installed additional improvements in these pods and is asking for a reduction in the required Letters of Credit.

Mr. Kuiper stated that they are asking for a review of those pods and a reduction in the Letter of Credit amounts that are required.

Mr. Kraus advised that he has Public Works checking the work to verify it is done and that some of the pods came with a request to withhold signatures on the Mylars until the work was completed. Mr. Eberly confirmed that all the pods except for Pod 7E were going to have the Mylars withheld for signatures until the improvements were installed.

Mr. Birlson inquired if Public Works was doing due diligence when reviewing the infrastructure. Mr. Kraus responded in the affirmative.

F. 2020-0007 JOHN TSAHAS – Combine Two Lots to Create a One-Lot Subdivision in Lake Hills at 10351 Lakeside Court
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a petition by John Tsahas; who will be seeking permission to combine two existing lots in Lake Hills into a one-lot subdivision at 10351 Lakeside Court.

Mr. Tsahas explained that Lake Hills’ covenants require a side-loading garage. They had originally purchased Lot 5, which was not wide enough; so they purchased Lot 6 in order to combine the lots to build a home with more space and a large yard.

Mr. Eberly explained that the Town does not allow secondary structures on a lot without a primary structure or a house to straddle the common property line.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there is a driveway issue that needs to be addressed. Mr. Eberly responded that Mr. Tsahas will have to decide which street will be his access street, Lakeside Court or Winding Trail. Mr. Tsahas responded that they are thinking of angling the home on the corner and have the driveway on Lakeside Court.

Mr. Eberly advised that it is best to have a house facing the street that it is addressed on in the event of an emergency to make it easier for first responders to locate the residence. Mr. Eberly further advised that on a simple petition where it is a one-lot subdivision, Primary Plat and Secondary Plat can be approved in the same meeting. The Secondary Plat would not be signed until 30 days after the Primary Plat is signed.

Mr. Kraus advised that it is coming in for Primary Plat approval but will be reviewed as a Secondary Plat because it is in an existing subdivision that has had all of its engineering review completed.

G. DISCUSSION – Plans to Update the Comprehensive Plan, Zoning Ordinance, Subdivision Control Ordinance
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a discussion regarding plans to update the Comprehensive Plan, Zoning Ordinance, and the Subdivision Control Ordinance.

Mr. Eberly advised that there are conflicts in the Zoning Ordinance, that they would tackle this a bit at a time would be, and that it may take most of the year to complete the project. The plan is to bring the Zoning Ordinance in a few sections at a time with recommended changes including explanations for those changes. Both Mr. Kraus and he have things they would like to see changed in the Subdivision Control Ordinance. The Subdivision Control Ordinance is going to be a little easier to tackle with less changes proposed, so they will likely start with that.

Mr. Eberly explained that the changes will be discussed at Study Sessions until they are ready to put together an ordinance that Attorney Decker will draft it in the proper legal form, then they will hold a Public Hearing on those changes, and then make a recommendation to the Town Council asking them to adopt said changes.

Mr. Eberly noted that the Comprehensive Plan was last updated three years ago; typically they are looked at and amended every five years and sometimes as few as every ten years for communities that are not growing rapidly. Mr. Eberly noted that they would start the process at the next Study Session.

Mr. Panczuk stated that he believes the Comprehensive Plan is fresh and doesn’t need to be updated yet. The proposed changes to the Zoning Ordinance and Subdivision Control Ordinance are revisions to eliminate conflicts, give clarity, and create more concrete standards.

Mr. Panczuk commented that the Subdivision Control Ordinance dictates how a subdivision should be built, including specifications for street widths, sidewalk widths, etc. Mr. Panczuk would like detention areas to be excluded from lots; easement encroachments to be excluded from smaller lots, or a minimum setback, giving concrete standards for safety purposes because the Vector Pipeline is only approximately 15 feet away from some residences. Mr. Panczuk would like to see wider sidewalks be a concrete standard instead of a discretionary request of the Plan Commission.

Mr. Kennedy requested that we make the wider sidewalks a concrete standard but made with asphalt.

Mr. Birlson stated that he would like to see public comment put in front of a public hearing. Mr. Kennedy, et al, explained that there is comment for Public Hearings before any action is taken.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 8:13 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

02-05-2020 Plan Commission

February 5, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Wednesday, February 5, 2020, at 7:00 p.m. and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Jon Gill; Michael Gillette; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney. Absent: Yolanda Cardona; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison.

Mr. Kennedy declared a quorum.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Gill made a motion to approve the meeting minutes for January 7, 2020, Regular Meeting; January 15, 2020, Special Meeting, and January 15, 2020, Study Session; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

None was had.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. CONTINENTAL – Extension of PUD Zoning Approval – (Petitioner: Hickory Terrace, LLC/Michael Tiller)
Mr. Kennedy advised that Continental is seeking a 6-month extension on its PUD Zoning Approval.

Mr. Michael Tiller, representing Hickory Terrace, LLC, stated that he is present to request a 6-month extension for their PUD development. He noted that development is continuing and that they would be back later in the year to plat more lots.

Attorney Decker stated that the Primary Plat and the Secondary Plat were approved; and in his legal opinion, once those approvals are made, PUD zoning approval would not require any renewal. He added that it is within the ability and purview of the board to give that comfort measure to the developer as an assurance that development can continue.

Ms. Wohland made a motion to grant the PUD Zoning Approval extension; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

B. 2020-0003 OAKRIDGE ESTATES – Notification of Public Hearing for Primary Plat on March 4, 2020 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy and Mr. Eberly explained that the Plan Commission used to require any petitioner asking for a public hearing to seek permission to advertise; however, requesting permission to advertise is an action that does not require a motion, a second, and a vote. Mr. Kennedy advised that the notification for Public Hearing on March 4, 2020, for The Gates of St. John East applies to items B, C, D, and E.

Attorney Tim Kuiper noted that he is providing notice that they will be present for Public Hearing on March 4, 2020, for this item and the following three agenda items and to answer any questions the board may have.

Mr. Eberly stated that Mr. Lotton proposed that we find a creative way to find connectivity through the extension of a bike path/walking path through the development as opposed to sidewalks in front of the development that wouldn't connect to anything in the current condition. He stated that the process of determining how that would happen is ongoing and that they are hoping to tie into the Silver Leaf development. Discussion ensued regarding possible ways to connect a pathway and the surrounding properties.

Mr. Kennedy asked how many acres of environmentally sensitive land there is. Mr. Lotton responded that they are not impacting any of the wetlands at this time. Mr. Kennedy asked if the property in the far southwest corner would stay untouched. Mr. Lotton responded in the affirmative.

C. 2020-0004 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Notification of Public Hearing for Primary Plat for Pod 24 and Part of Pod 25 on March 4, 2020 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
Mr. Eberly stated that he has asked Mr. Lotton to provide a stub to the south as required by the Subdivision Control Ordinance and that Mr. Lotton indicated he would do so.

Attorney Kuiper stated that they would be happy to provide a stub and cautioned against allowing the stub to become a thoroughfare in the future.

Mr. Kennedy stated that they are concerned with the need for more access points and that there have been complaints about the traffic on Cline Avenue.

D. 2020-0005 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Notification of Public Hearing for Primary Plat for Pods 27 and 28 on March 4, 2020 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
Mr. Eberly advised that this parcel is north of the 108 acres that are already in town. The lot-size analysis shows the 220-acre development exceeds the 11,200 square-foot average in its entirety, with an average 11,695 square feet as currently proposed, that it must meet per the Zoning Commitment.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there are sidewalks Attorney Kuiper responded in the affirmative and reviewed the path of the bike trail for the board members.

E. 2020-0006 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Notification of Public Hearing for Replatting of Pod 22, Lots 2249-2258, on March 4, 2020 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the long, linear lots would be replatted during this Public Hearing.

Mr. Eberly noted that lots do extend into the detention pond, which is not a concern for the Town of St. John because the HOA will maintain it.

F. THE GATES OF ST. JOHN, PODS 7E, 7F, 9B, AND 17B – Revised Letters of Credit
Mr. Kennedy advised that The Gates of St. John, Pods 7E, 7F, 9B, and 17B are revising their Letters of Credit and read Mr. Kraus' review letters into the record.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to accept the revised Letters of Credit for The Gates of St. John for Pod 7E in the amount of $215,418.80, Pod 7F in the amount of $277,345.00, Pod 9B in the amount of $79,671.35, and Pod 17B in the amount of $71,573.26, as per Mr. Kraus' review letters; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Gill made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to accept the revised Letters of Credit for The Gates of St. John for Pod 7E in the amount of $215,418.80, Pod 7F in the amount of $277,345.00, Pod 9B in the amount of $79,671.35, and Pod 17B in the amount of $71,573.26; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

G. 2020-0007 JOHN TSAHAS – Notice of Public Hearing for Primary Plat on March 4, 2020 – (Petitioner: John Tsahas)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petition would have a Public Hearing on March 4, 2020, and asked what street the petitioner's house would be facing. Mr. Eberly responded that the petitioner would prefer that the house face Lakeside Court and have a Lakeside Court address.
H. GREYSTONE – Replacement Letter of Credit – (Petitioner: CWS Holdings/Michael Tiller)
Mr. Kennedy advised that Greystone Development is changing financial institutions and would be replacing three existing Letters of Credit with one Letter of Credit in an amount equal to the total of the three existing Letters of Credit.

Mr. Tiller stated that they were with Centier Bank and would be changing to People's Bank with one Letter of Credit replacing the current three Letters of Credit.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to accept the Letter of Credit from People's Bank in the amount of $74,080.60 to replace and release the existing Letters of Credit from Centier Bank for Unit 1, Block, 4, in the amount of $20,515.00; Unit 2, Block 3, in the amount of $23,661.00; and Unit 2, Block 4, in the amount of $29,904.60; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Ms. Wohland made a motion to send a recommendation to the Town Council to accept the Letter of Credit from People's Bank in the amount of $74,080.60 to replace and release the existing Letters of Credit from Centier Bank for Unit 1, Block 4, in the amount of $20,515.00; Unit 2, Block 3, in the amount of $23,661.00; and Unit 2, Block 4, in the amount of $29,904.60; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Gill made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously, and Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 7:33 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

02-19-2020 Plan Commission

February 19, 2020 Plan Commission Study Session Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Study Session to order on Wednesday, February 19, 2020, at 7:00 p.m. and led all in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and John Kennedy, President. Also present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: None. A quorum was attained.

NEW/OLD BUSINESS:

A. 2020-0003 OAKRIDGE ESTATES – Introduction of an RC-2 PUD Single-Family Development Plan of 40 Acres on the Northwest Corner of White Oak Avenue and 109th Avenue – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)

Mr. Kennedy advised that Oakridge Estates is an RC 2 PUD, single-family development containing 40 acres on the northwest corner of White Oak Avenue and 109th Avenue.

Attorney Kuiper presented on behalf of the petitioner, John Lotton, and noted that the subdivision has not changed over the last month and a half. It contains 78 lots on 40.33 acres.

Mr. Kennedy inquired about the potential bike path. Attorney Kuiper responded that they would install the required sidewalk but are willing to work on that connectivity, which could be done at a later time without affecting the plat or the engineering.

Mr. Kennedy asked if the width of the sidewalk would be 5 feet. Attorney Kuiper responded in the affirmative. Mr. Kennedy asked how wide the bike trail on White Oak Avenue is. Mr. Kraus responded that he believes it is 8 feet. Mr. Kennedy asked if the bike path were continued, would it be an 8-foot bike path. Attorney Kuiper responded in the affirmative.

Mr. Eberly stated that he had asked the developer to show an option for connectivity to Silver Leaf and displayed possible connections locations on the Lake County GIS.

Mr. Panczuk suggested running a sidewalk along 109th Avenue since there is a dedicated right of way at Silver Leaf.

Mr. Birlson asked what the right of way dedication is on 109th. Mr. Eberly responded that it should match the 50 foot right of way dedication in Silver Leaf.

Mr. Gill suggested running the path on the east side of White Oak Avenue. If it could be run to Patnoe Park, it could tie into the bike trail that goes across to Heartland Park and continue to The Preserve. Discussion ensued.

Attorney Kuiper stated that they were asking if there were alternatives the board wanted to explore, but they are willing to put in the sidewalk, per the Subdivision Control Ordinance. If they have any ideas, they can run them through Mr. Eberly.

Mr. Kraus commented that there is a street that runs through Candlelight Trails and into Homestead Acres named Oakridge, which causes him some concern that there may be confusion between the street and the subdivision. Mr. Eberly stated that there is a similar situation with Summerlin Estates and Summerlin in Mill Creek.

Mr. Gill stated there is a bigger problem with the street named James. Mr. Eberly responded that the name is to be changed. Attorney Kuiper confirmed the same.

Ms. Cardona asked if the petitioner has considered anything in terms of the bike path Mr. Gill described. Attorney Kuiper responded in the negative.

B. 2020-0004 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of an R-2 PUD Single-Family Development for Unit 24 and Part of Unit 25 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that The Gates of St. John East, Unit 24 and part of Unit 25, is proposed as an R 2 PUD development, which is located in the southern end of the development. They will have Public Hearing on March 4.

Mr. Kuiper stated that the only change is a cut in at the south end to create a stub into the Barman property for possible future connectivity.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Eberly if the Subdivision Control Ordinance requires any subdivided plan to provide a stub. Mr. Eberly confirmed that it does and noted that he had a conversation with Mr. Lotton regarding having a stub. The proposed stub provides connectivity without providing a straight shot through the subdivision to avoid creating a raceway from 109th Avenue to 101st Avenue.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Eberly if this plat meets all the subdivision standards. Mr. Eberly confirmed the same. Discussion ensued regarding access points.

C. 2020-0005 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of an R-2 PUD Single-Family Development for Units 27 and 28 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy asked Attorney Kuiper to speak on The Gates of the St. John East, Units 27 and 28.

Attorney Kuiper stated that there are no changes to the plat.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there are curbs, gutters, and a sidewalk on the north side. Attorney Kuiper responded in the affirmative. Mr. Kraus commented that there is no curb.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there would be signage. Attorney Kuiper responded that it would only be what is allowed by sign ordinance. They are not planning anything large.

Mr. Eberly advised the board that there are no regulations in the sign ordinances regarding subdivision signage. That is to be presented to the Plan Commission at the time of Primary Plat Public Hearing so the Plan Commission can render a decision on it.

Mr. Kennedy asked how many signs they intend to have. Attorney Kuiper responded that it would be similar to The Gates where signs are at the main entrances.

D. 2020-0006 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of a Replat of the R-2 PUD Single-Family Development for Unit 22, Lots 2249 through 2258 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy turned the floor over to Attorney Kuiper to discuss the replatting of Unit 22, Lots 2249 through 2258.

Attorney Kuiper stated that it is the same plan and is consistent with the overall design.

Mr. Eberly stated that they must meet an average of 11,200 square feet lot size, and they exceed that amount. With this replat, the average lot size is 11,679 square feet per lot.

E. 2020-0007 JOHN TSAHAS – Continued Discussion Combining Two Lots into a One-Lot Subdivision in Lake Hills at 10351 Lakeside Court
Mr. Kennedy advised that the petitioner John Tsahas is requesting to combine two lots in Lake Hills Subdivision and create a one-lot subdivision at 10351 Lakeside Court. The Public Hearing for this petition will be on March 4, 2020.

Mr. Tsahas stated that he wishes to change two lots that he purchased in Lake Hills Subdivision and combine them into one lot and build one house on the newly subdivided lot.

Mr. Eberly advised that no engineering needs to be completed as it is in an existing subdivision.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Tsahas what street address he would be using. Mr. Tsahas responded that they would like to have the 10351 Lakeside Court address.

Mr. Eberly noted that the setbacks presume the home will have a Lakeside Court address. The minimum front-yard setback is 25 feet; the maximum is 40 feet, and the side-yard setback is 20 feet.

Mr. Kraus commented that often we do Primary Plat and Secondary Plat approval at the same meeting when a petitioner is taking two lots in an existing subdivision and combining them into one. He further commented that there is usually a $900 minimum fee for preliminary review and another $900 for a secondary review. He will only be reviewing one plat for this, so the Plan Commission may wish to waive one of the review fees. Mr. Eberly commented that he agrees with the waiver as suggested by Mr. Kraus.

Mr. Eberly explained that the Plan Commission would approve Primary Plat and Secondary Plat on March 4, but they would not sign the Secondary Plat until after thirty days have passed.

F. MOONRAKER ESTATE – Initial Discussion Regarding Combining Two Lots into a One-Lot Subdivision in Castle Rock – (Petitioner: Doug Rettig)
Mr. Eberly advised that this is a very similar situation to Mr. Tsahas. Mr. Rettig will be presenting two lots in Castle Rock that are being combined into one, known as Moonraker Estate.

Mr. Doug Rettig, DVG, stated that he has a client who purchased Lots 11 and 12 in Castle Rock and wants to combine them into one lot of just over 2 acres and build a house. All the improvements are in as it is a previously platted subdivision. Mr. Rettig commented that they would like to request both Primary Plat and Secondary Plat approval at the Public Hearing in April.

Mr. Eberly asked Mr. Kraus to confirm that the same conditions, in terms of fees, would apply to this request as the previous petition. Mr. Kraus responded in the affirmative.

G. ANTHONY CASBONI – Rezoning Two Acres Plus of Property at 9541 White Oak Avenue from Open Space to R-1 Single-Family Residential with the Intention of Creating Four 1/2-Acre plus Lots Along White Oak Avenue
Mr. Kennedy advised that Mr. Casboni is petitioning to rezone just over two acres of his property at 9541 White Oak Avenue from Open Space to R-1 Single-Family Residential to create four on-acre lots. Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Casboni to explain what he is proposing to the board.

Mr. Anthony Casboni advised that the petitioner should be AC Group Holdings, LLC, and described the project. He is requesting a rezone from Open Space to R-1 for an approximately 2.3-acre parcel of land located at 9541 White Oak Avenue.

Mr. Eberly advised that the lots exceed the 20,000 square-foot minimum for R-1. Open Space requires a minimum lot size of 2 acres. He further advised that Mr. Casboni shows the property laid out in lots; he is going to leave the platting of the development up to the buyer or buyers, but he has provided a legal description of each lot and does intend to sell the properties that way.

Mr. Eberly noted that he has had conversation with Mr. Kraus regarding a water main on the west side of White Oak Avenue that will serve all four lots; however, the sanitary sewer only runs through the easement along the north side of Lot 1, so sanitary services would have to be extended to the lots south of Lot 1. Mr. Kraus advised that it should be a public sewer if more than one property is being serviced.

Mr. Eberly added that it could go through the proposed utility easement along the east side of the property, or it could be out in the right-of-way. Someone will be dedicating an additional 30 feet of right-of-way off of White Oak Avenue; these lots already reflect that dedication.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Eberly what the White Oak Avenue right-of-way requirements are. Mr. Eberly responded that in some of the older areas, it is probably still 40 feet, but it should be at least 60 feet.

Mr. Kennedy asked how much The Preserve gave. Mr. Kraus responded that he believes it was 50 feet. Mr. Kennedy asked if there is a road classification for White Oak Avenue. Mr. Kraus replied that it is a collector street. Mr. Eberly agreed that it is a collector and could be an arterial road.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Casboni if the corporation would be adding drives to the lots onto White Oak Avenue. Mr. Casboni responded in the affirmative and commented that it would be up to the individual who buys the lots. He is only asking for the rezoning.

Mr. Kennedy explained that the Thoroughfare Plan calls out that the number of private drives onto a collector and minor arterial streets by residents should be reduced or minimized. Mr. Kennedy stated that he would consider White Oak Avenue as a major north-south route through the town and feels the driveway access should be limited. Mr. Birlson concurred that the number of driveways accessing White Oak Avenue needs to be limited.

Mr. Birlson asked if Mr. Casboni owns the property to the east. Mr. Casboni responded in the affirmative and stated that it would be phase two. Mr. Birlson asked why he wouldn't do it all at one time instead of in phases, which would allow the Plan Commission a better chance of eliminating some driveway access on White Oak Avenue. Mr. Casboni responded that this is something his brother started before he passed away and something he would like to get done. The surveyor already platted the lots out in December.

Mr. Birlson commented that he would like for this project to be approached all at once. Mr. Casboni responded that he would like to keep part of his property private for now and sell more of it off as he gets older.

Mr. Kennedy asked if this would be on the March agenda to be announced for Public Hearing at the April meeting. Mr. Eberly responded in the affirmative.

Mr. Kennedy advised the members to keep the Thoroughfare Plan in mind because, sooner or later, they will need to figure out the best approach for White Oak Avenue and what needs to be done with that.

Mr. Gill noted that there is a connection to 96th that goes nowhere.

Mr. Casboni asked Mr. Eberly if the 15-day notice for the papers has a maximum. Mr. Eberly responded that there is only a 15-day minimum.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Casboni if he understands the concerns regarding limited driveway access on White Oak Avenue. Mr. Casboni responded in the affirmative and commented that there are driveways on White Oak Avenue and that this is in the old part of White Oak Avenue.

Mr. Panczuk noted that the Thoroughfare Plan labels White Oak Avenue as a minor arterial road, and at least a 90-foot right-of-way is needed, which is 45 feet per side. Further, he agreed that they should mirror what The Preserve did.

Discussion ensued regarding limiting driveway access on busy roadways.

H. COMPREHENSIVE PLAN, ZONING ORDINANCE, AND SUBDIVISION CONTROL ORDINANCE UPDATES – Discussion
Mr. Kennedy turned the floor over to Mr. Panczuk.

Mr. Panczuk stated that Attorney Decker has created a rough draft which addresses pipeline easements and impact areas to provide a buffer between pipelines and residences or structures. This Subdivision Control Ordinance revision would minimize the risk human activity over pipeline easements and minimize the encroachment of pipelines through lots and onto lots. Pipelines are a safety and general welfare issue.

Mr. Panczuk commented that Attorney Decker had outlined a two-pronged approach to minimize human activity over pipeline easements. One would be to have a minimum-sized lot in a given zoning district. For example, an R-1 lot has a minimum lot size of 20,000 square feet, and only a lot that is greater than 20,000 square feet could have an encroachment with regulations for a certain distance from the building setback line, which is the impact area. There shall be a 50-foot impact area from the edge of the pipeline easement and any building setback lines. Mr. Panczuk commented that this would provide developers a concrete standard in the Subdivision Control Ordinance.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there is 50 feet between the property delineation and a structure or a house if a pipeline easement abuts the property line of a property owner. Attorney Decker responded that the 50-foot impact area is intended to delineate the area, and there would be the setback required for the zoning classification.

Mr. Kennedy asked about pools. Mr. Eberly responded that it is referring to an occupied structure.

Mr. Panczuk stated that the building setback lines are like invisible lines and any pipeline easement would require 50 feet be added to that setback line for the impact area.

Mr. Birlson asked how they arrived at 50 feet. Attorney Decker stated that he reviewed other municipalities that have adopted similar regulations, there is a formula that is used and promulgated by the department of transportation that takes into consideration the pipeline diameter and the pressure being used. He noted that he did not investigate or determine for the Vector or other pipelines, but in general, the calculation for a 36 or 42-inch pipeline that might be at 1000 psi or more transferring natural gas would be much greater than 50 feet. The calculation is called an impact radius area and determines what area around the pipeline would be affected adversely if there were some type of failure.

Attorney Decker stated that the 50 feet is not written in stone, and adjustments can be made based on the size and type of pipeline. For the purposes of drafting something, he was focused on the Vector Pipeline, which is the most significant pipeline in the town.

Mr. Panczuk stated that they are trying to set minimal guidelines to minimize human activity over the pipelines and pipeline activity in residents' backyards. Currently, the easement could run right up to your backdoor, and the Vector Pipeline could be 15 feet from your backdoor step, which is the case currently in Three Springs, Phase 3.

Mr. Eberly stated that he thinks we need to keep pipeline easements off of lots regardless of the lot size, because the setbacks remain the same. Someone could set a house all the way against the setback line, which is an unknown at the platting stage. Mr. Eberly stated that he likes the 50-foot buffer, but he believes it will have to be from the property line.

Mr. Eberly asked Attorney Decker if we are using the range of 500 to 1400 pounds as high pressure. Attorney Decker responded that the ordinance doesn't intend to define the standards of what a high pressure line is; however, it is a range he found in his research of natural gas transmission lines. The intent is to try to define a pipeline that has a minimum diameter or radius that would need to be included for purposes of defining what pipeline would be the subject of the impact area.

Mr. Eberly noted that he doesn't know what we will consider high pressure, but we need to know that information before we can regulate it.

Mr. Panczuk asked if the intent of the ordinance was to keep it simple and not differentiate the pipelines. Attorney Decker responded that it was his intent, but there needs to be a distinction drawn between a service line and a transmission line. This is the first draft, and it is important to make a clear distinction between a transmission line, a distribution line, and a service line. The intent of the ordinance is to regulate transmission lines.

Mr. Eberly asked if the term "high pressure" should continue to be used, or if that term should be eliminated and only refer to transmission lines. Attorney Decker stated that it may not be necessary to include "high pressure" to ascertain a minimum pressure above which the ordinance would apply. Using the diameter or radius of the pipeline itself would simplify it.

Mr. Eberly commented that RC-1 and the RC-2 are PUDs, so they will need to be called out as such where the various districts are listed, if we will continue to have those zoning districts. Mr. Eberly further commented that he doesn't know how we could keep the separation if we try to do it according to setbacks because the house can be built anywhere on the lot within those setbacks. He stated that he believes that the intent is to say 50 feet plus the setback, but he doesn't feel it reads that way.

Mr. Panczuk stated that we could strike the entire section about whether or not the easement is in a lot and simply use the setback lines. If the impact area is 50 feet from the setback lines, it would be off the lot. With a 40-foot setback line, the easement would have to be at least 10 feet off of the lot. Mr. Birlson concurred that it should be 50 feet plus the setback.

Attorney Decker noted that if someone has a really large lot, you could easily have the 50-foot impact area beyond the easement for the pipeline and then a setback for the building. Mr. Eberly responded that the setback line is from the property line, not from the house.

Mr. Gill commented that if the distance of the impact area is greater than the lot line, it would only increase the distance between the home and the impact area.

Mr. Panczuk advised that we should not make it a hardship on the developers, because we would run into problems if we did. The idea is to keep it isolated from the home, business, or structure. A large lot with 5 acres might be okay with a pipeline easement at the far back side of the property.

Mr. Eberly advised that the intent is to modify the Subdivision Control Ordinance with this language. The board can grant waivers, so if someone has a 5-acre lot, the Plan Commission can identify the buildable area for that lot and allow a pipeline to be somewhere on the 5-acre lot. For the typical situation, it doesn't work because the building could be anywhere on the property.

Mr. Birlson asked what the ultimate goal is. Mr. Panczuk stated that the goal is to minimize the chance of any incident happening from human activity, trying to create space between where the home is to that pipeline, and minimize impact if anything were to happen.

Mr. Eberly stated that Industrial Districts require a minimum 10-acre lot size, so there may be room on a 10-acre site to allow for a pipeline to run through. Mr. Eberly commented that he likes the idea of a setback plus 50 feet, but it creates a 50-foot area between an easement and a lot line.

Mr. Rettig spoke from the audience and stated that you have to be able to have easements on the lots. If you have a 30,000 square-foot lot, you could have an easement in the back and still get your 20,000 square feet outside of the easement, but they need to own it because there's no other way to do it.

Mr. Eberly asked if he is saying the lot owner needs to own it. Mr. Rettig responded that it's the easiest way. Mr. Panczuk stated that it is the ideal way, which is why he was asking Attorney Decker if there is a different way to calculate it based on structure.

Mr. Rettig recommended having an impact building line so many feet from the edge of the easement that is a no-build zone. Mr. Eberly stated that it would create a different setback.

Attorney Decker stated that if there is a transmission pipeline, we would increase the floating line or minimum setback.

Mr. Rettig suggested calling it an impact building line or an impact zone building line, a different type of line that could run from the edge of the easement or the center of the easement; however, sometimes the easements are not centered.

Mr. Eberly and Mr. Panczuk responded that they like the edge of easement as it is easier to identify. Mr. Gillette concurred that he likes the edge of the easement. Attorney Decker stated that it makes it a clean standard that can be readily apparent to an engineer or developer.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there is an impact zoning in any other community in Northwest Indiana. Mr. Panczuk stated that there are some communities that have these and are very strict; Austin, Texas, has some incredible standards. Attorney Decker noted that Champagne County, Illinois, has adopted an ordinance.

Mr. Panczuk stated that currently the Subdivision Control Ordinance gives the Plan Commission the option of requiring a wider sidewalk on a major artery. On major arteries like US 41, Joliet, Patterson, we would require an 8-foot sidewalk instead of a 5-foot sidewalk. Mr. Panczuk commented that concrete is a better option than asphalt, because it would be very costly for the Town to maintain, and there are numerous deteriorating asphalt pathways around town.

Mr. Kennedy stated that it is nice to have a wider path. While understanding the maintenance cost to the Town, it is more costly to the developer because concrete is more expensive than asphalt. Mr. Panczuk responded that this would only impact the outer areas of the subdivisions along arterial roads.

Mr. Eberly commented that we would select the classification of the roads, which would give us a concrete standard. The Thoroughfare Plan identifies the various types of streets, we just need to select what the applicable roadways are.

Mr. Panczuk addressed the use of detention areas in meeting minimum or average square-footage of lots, stating that it takes control of the lots sizes away from the Town, and recommended changing the Subdivision Control Ordinance to exclude detention areas,

Mr. Eberly advised that Willow Ridge is platted into a wet retention pond that was done that way because the homeowners want to own that lake, and only those who live around that lake can use it, so there could be an instance where you would want to allow that. What you might want to do is make sure you achieve your minimum lot size outside of that detention pond or retention pond. If you plat it into the pond, the buildable area should meet or exceed the minimum lot size for that given zoning district.

Mr. Panczuk commented that we could exclude it and grant a waiver allowing it.

Mr. Eberly asked how you would keep a developer from using it for credit of the lots size when you grant a waiver. Mr. Gill asked if language could be put in there specifying that the detention/retention area cannot be included to meet the minimum lot size requirement, but it can be owned above and beyond the square footage. Discussion ensued.

Mr. Rettig recommended using a gross lot area and having no more than 10% of said lot encumbered by a detention easement.

Mr. Panczuk asked if any other nearby municipalities have anything that we might be able to work from as well. Mr. Eberly stated that Dyer has language in terms of the wet area. They addressed it in Dyer by saying if a minimum of a 15,000 square-foot lot is required, you can't have any portion of that lot in a wet pond and take credit for the lot size. The 15,000 square feet has to be outside of that. There is no language prohibiting it for a detention basin or a basin that is dry most of the time.

Mr. Rettig stated that unincorporated Lake County makes them add the detention ponds to lots, so the homeowners have to mow it.

Mr. Eberly stated that the Town doesn't want ponds anymore, so we require the HOAs to own and care for them, typically as an outlot.

Attorney Decker agreed to investigate other municipalities to see what they do.

Mr. Eberly stated that there are some things in the Subdivision Control Ordinance he would like to address at next month's Study Session, like the way we bill developers for our developmental fees. We don't collect that until the secondary plat stage, and we get billings for these developments far before the secondary plat stage, and some of them may never go to secondary plat.

Mr. Eberly stated that when he was at Dyer, they charged 1% at the time of primary plat and the second 1% at the time of secondary plat so that they got money from the developer early on when we were getting billed for review of that development. Perhaps we could bill 1% at primary plat or the time of application 1% at secondary plat. We need to ensure we are charging enough to cover our costs.

Mr. Birlson recommended charging a base price per acre upfront.

The board discussed having the Public Hearing for the Subdivision Control Ordinance in April or May.

Mr. Gill asked if the development standards are going to be reviewed for the Subdivision Control Ordinance. Mr. Eberly responded in the affirmative and noted that the street light standard is another item that needs to be reviewed.

Mr. Kraus noted that the standard was written before LED lights were invented. Mr. Eberly stated that we might need language incorporating using the most recent advancement in lighting, whatever that might be.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 8:35 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

03-04-2020 Plan Commission

March 4, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Wednesday, March 4, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. A quorum was attained.

Absent: Michael Gillette and Donna Little, Executive Secretary.

Mr. Kennedy introduced Mr. Phillips, the new Town Manager for the edification of all.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Gill made a motion to defer the meeting minutes for the February 5, 2020, Regular Meeting; and the February 19, 2020, Study Session; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

Mr. Kennedy turned the floor over to Attorney Decker prior to starting any of the Public Hearings listed on the agenda to address and advise the Board regarding litigious matters concerning many of those items listed.

Attorney Decker advised that the Town of St. John and BLB St. John LLC, are currently involved in litigation. On February 20, 2018, BLB St. John initiated a lawsuit against the Town of St. John in Lake Superior Court. In that lawsuit, BLB St. John sought compensation and a declaratory judgment arising from the construction of a sanitary interceptor sewer line through the subdivision known as The Gates of St. John. On Monday, March 2, 2020, the Court in that litigation held a hearing in regard to certain aspects of the litigation. The Court has requested the parties submit proposed findings and conclusions for its consideration by March 23. The Court is expected to rule after that date, but it is uncertain as to when that ruling will be forthcoming. As a result, the Town and BLB St. John have agreed to defer any action on items A, B, C, D, and E on the agenda.

Attorney Decker stated that in addition Item F, which involves the replat of Pod 22, is arguably also part of that litigation. Its determination may be determinative on the result of the litigation. For those reasons, Attorney Decker recommended the Plan Commission consider approving a motion to defer items A-F, including the Public Hearing to the April 1, 2020 meeting.

Ms. Cardona asked if there is a staggered timeframe that the Court has set for the parties. Attorney Decker responded that it is his understanding that all parties’ submissions are due on March 23, so they were not staggered.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there is a timeframe for a decision after March 23. Attorney Decker responded that he is not aware that the Court indicated that it would rule within a specific period of time.

Attorney Tim Kuiper, on behalf of BLB and LBL, asked to address the board.

Mr. Kennedy asked Attorney Decker if it is all right to allow Attorney Kuiper to speak. Attorney Decker responded that, as the chair, Mr. Kennedy has the option to recognize Attorney Kuiper if he wishes to do so, but he is not required to do so.

Mr. Kennedy permitted Attorney Kuiper to address the board.

Attorney Kuiper stated that he concurred with most of what Attorney Decker said and that he had recited most things correctly. Based upon a prior agreement that was submitted to the Court on January 14, in this matter, it stated that no public hearings would occur where a motion could be made on any items that related to Resolution No. 2020-01-01. That is the 40 acres that is over by White Oak and 109th Avenue and is also the 111 acres that is on top of and below the other things, so Items A-E would be properly continued tonight based upon that agreement of parties.

Attorney Kuiper stated that he has a challenge with Item F; that is a replat of part of that unit that was in town that was rezoned last year that is not subject to the lawsuit. It’s not subject to the annexations, or anything else. It was zoned R-2 PUD. Again, it is not part of the lawsuit, any annexation, or anything else; there is no legal basis tonight to continue that item. He continued that it is proper; it has been posted; it has been noticed in the paper and certified letters were sent out per the Plan Commission’s requirement; so they respectfully request that that item still be heard tonight and that the public hearing be conducted.

Mr. Kennedy questioned whether that was based on the square footage of the development in its entirety. Attorney Kuiper responded that it is. Mr. Kennedy added that it is part of the whole development, which is in litigation, and we don’t know the outcome of that zoning of the additional acreage outside of this unit. Attorney Kuiper asserted that that doesn’t matter to the outcome of this replat because if it is R-1, the density can’t go down. The average would go up.

Attorney Kuiper noted that if we were to proceed on all the items, except for the two rezoning matters, the average across the project meets it right now as an R-2 PUD as they submitted it. It can’t be made any denser, and the ruling of the Court would only make it less dense. Ordinance No. 1695, the Zoning Ordinance the Town Council adopted last year, put it to R-2 PUD with a requirement of 11,200 average lot size across the project. The argument last year is that the other two parcels were not technically in town. Technically, that’s correct; the parcels came in January 1 at midnight. Now that the project is completely in the jurisdiction of the town, Item F is appropriate for your consideration tonight regardless of the outcome of the lawsuit.

Ms. Cardona asked Attorney Decker to elaborate on how Item F is connected that would explain Attorney Kuiper’s position. Attorney Decker responded that his understanding is that the property which was annexed into the Town of St. John last year, which was annexed as of January 1, 2020, is part of a zoning commitment that was made by the developer LBL Development. That commitment provides that the average lot size for all of the lots in the entire development, which consists of 220 acres, would meet an average lot size of 11,200 square feet. The court has not yet ruled on the legal issues concerning the annexation ordinance and the ordinance that annexed the property as R-2 PUD.

Attorney Decker stated that his understanding is that the developer, with the original plat of subdivision, which has been previously approved by the Plan Commission, presented that meeting that criteria. The amended plat is seeking to reduce the size of certain lots and without knowing what the developer intends to do with the other property in the 220 acres, it is difficult, if not impossible, for the Plan Commission to fully understand whether the developer would meet the zoning commitment that meets the 11,200 square-foot average lot size throughout the entire development.

Attorney Kuiper stated that the issue with that is that the lot average could only go up if the Court were to find in favor of the Town. The lot sizes would have to go up, and as presented today, across the entire project, all of those exceed, on average, the 11,200 square feet.

Mr. Kennedy brought the matter back to the Board and advised that the parties agree on Items A-E. The question brought up by the petitioner is related to Item F.

Mr. Panczuk cautioned the Plan Commission that they can only judge on the parcel itself, not judge it on what might happen on the other parcel. Once primary approval is given for this parcel, secondary approval is only ministerial, and there are no guaranties with what could happen with the other parcel. They could sell it; it could be rezoned. Anything is possible, so without primary plat on both, in parallel, they have no true test of the Zoning Commitment and cannot guaranty it will meet the 11,200 square-foot average lot size. The Zoning Commitment binds the two parcels; therefore, you cannot make a true decision on whether the Zoning Commitment has been met, or not.

Attorney Kuiper addressed the board and stated that he understands the attorneys speaking, but the liaison has spoken since that time and he would like a chance to respond.

Attorney Kuiper stated that the board is concerned with the R-2 PUD on these other properties. He further stated that there is no way that anyone, them or any further owner of the property, could come in and get anything less than R-1 at this point in time. There is no way that they can get less than 11,200 square feet across the property. They have submitted fully for the entirety of the project and are exceeding the average lot size as required by the commitment. There is no way legally, physically possible that they can dip below that requirement.

Mr. Kennedy asked if the replat were to be approved today, would he be at 11,200 or under. Attorney Kuiper said, “For the project, yes.” Mr. Kennedy requested confirmation of Attorney Kuiper’s statement. Attorney Kuiper said, “For the project. Now, the project is the 219.” Mr. Kennedy asked for the section of 108 acres. Attorney Kuiper said, “No, but the commitment is for across the project.” Mr. Kennedy said, “Which part of it is still under litigation.” Attorney Kuiper responded, “That’s correct, but we can’t dip below that average. Last year the issue was the property wasn’t technically annexed in, so we couldn’t guarantee that the property would come in. When we could, it was just ministerial. Thank you.”

Mr. Kennedy brought the matter back to the board and entertained a motion.

Ms. Cardona made a motion to defer Agenda Items A-F to the next regular Plan Commission meeting on April 1, 2020; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

A. 2020-0001 REZONING OF 111 +/- ACRES EAST OF CLINE AVENUE BETWEEN 101ST AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE – Rezone from R-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
As determined by a motion, a second, and a unanimous vote of the Plan Commission, this item has been deferred.
B. 2020-0002 REZONING OF 40 +/- ACRES ON THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF WHITE OAK AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE -- Rezone from RC-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
As determined by a motion, a second, and a unanimous vote of the Plan Commission, this item has been deferred.
C. 2020-0003 OAKRIDGE ESTATES – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
As determined by a motion, a second, and a unanimous vote of the Plan Commission, this item has been deferred.
D. 2020-0004 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNIT 24 AND PART OF UNIT 25 – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
As determined by a motion, a second, and a unanimous vote of the Plan Commission, this item has been deferred.
E. 2020-0005 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNITS 27 AND 28 – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
As determined by a motion, a second, and a unanimous vote of the Plan Commission, this item has been deferred.
F. 2020-0006 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNIT 22 – Primary Plat Approval for the Replat of Lots 2249-5528 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
As determined by a motion, a second, and a unanimous vote of the Plan Commission, this item has been deferred.
G. 2020-0007 JOHN TSAHAS 10351 LAKESIDE COURT – Primary Plat Approval for a One-lot Subdivision in Lake Hills – (Petitioner: John Tsahas)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a Public Hearing for Mr. John Tsahas, 10351 Lakeside Court, for Primary Plat approval for a one-lot subdivision in Lake Hills. Mr. Kennedy turned the floor over to Mr. Tsahas for a brief description.

Mr. Tsahas stated that he is wanting to combine Lots 5 and 6 into one lot, he further stated that no improvements are needed as the infrastructure is already in since it is in an established neighborhood.

Mr. Eberly advised that all items are in order for this Public Hearing to proceed. He further advised that Mr. Tsahas will be seeking both his Primary Plat and Secondary Plat approvals at this meeting with the understanding that the Secondary Plat cannot be signed until 30 days have expired from the date of Primary Plat approval, which is typical for a one-lot subdivision.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for Public Hearing. Hearing none, Mr. Kennedy closed Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the board.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory. The Developmental Fee for this project is $900.00 as there are no associated public infrastructure improvements and is to be paid prior to the Plan Commission President and Secretary signing the Secondary Plat. All public improvements have been installed as part of the existing subdivision.

Mr. Eberly advised that the Developmental Fee has been paid.

Mr. Kennedy entertained a motion to approve the Primary Plat.

Mr. Gill made a motion to grant Primary Plat approval for the Tsahas addition; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Kennedy entertained a motion for Secondary Plat approval.

Mr. Gill made a motion to grant Tsahas addition Secondary Plat approval, withholding signatures for 30 days; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. SHOPS 96 – Amended Secondary Plat – (Petitioner: Bruce Boyer)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Shops 96 for an amended Secondary Plat.

Mr. Bruce Boyer of Boyer Properties, representing the Shops 96 project, stated that there is a minor revision to the plat. Due to the realignment of the proposed 96th Place extension to Joliet Street, there has been a shift in the lot layouts and the outlot layouts. He explained that Lots 1A and 1B were one lot in the original recorded plat and is now being subdivided into two lots, and Outlot 2 used to be Outlots 2 and 3. Some of the lots were renumbered. Lots 3 and 4 in the rear are being combined to one large lot of 8.3 acres of Lot 3, and Lot 3 remains the detention pond lot. Outlots A and B are due to the realignment of the road and the old Lot 5 is being eliminated. Mr. Boyer advised that the Town is buying Lot 5 as per an amendment to the Economic Development Agreement to realign the road and miss all the bad soil areas.

Mr. Eberly advised that Mr. Kraus’ review letter and an email received from Scott Kuchta of Haas & Associates; he further advised that there are enough concerns with the plat that we may have to defer the action on the plat. Mr. Eberly stated that he may be asking the Plan Commission to conduct a special meeting in advance of the March 18 Study Session for consideration of a slightly different plat. Lot 5 has not yet been purchased, and if this plat were to be approved and recorded as is, it may have an impact on the purchase of the property.

Attorney Decker advised that when the plat is recorded it defines the lots within a subdivision. Currently, the Town and the developer have an agreement in place that provides that the Town will purchase what is identified as Lot 5 pursuant to the original plat of subdivision. If the plat presented this evening is recorded, Lot 5 would no longer exist.

Discussion ensued regarding the difference in the lot layout differences using visuals on the media screen in the room.

Mr. Eberly asked Mr. Phillips to speak to the timeline of the purchase of the land from Mr. Boyer by the Town being fast tracked. Mr. Phillips responded that there have been discussions regarding that; however, nothing has been decided as yet.

Mr. Kraus read his review letter into the record which outlined the changes from the original plat and noted that a preliminary review of the plat and finds that it has not received certification from a professional land surveyor; there are several different owners of parcels within the plat area with the names of the representatives not provided, nor which properties they own, which is especially important regarding Outlot A, Outlot B, and/or Lot 4, as ownership of said parcels affect the ongoing redesign of West 96th Place and the detention basin by the Town. The loss of the 230-foot wide detention at the rear of the original Lot 4 may also make redesign of the basin problematic.

Mr. Boyer advised that the certification is done at the time the mylars are presented by the surveyor. He stated that there are different owners and that they weren’t aware names were required as a signature line, but they can provide that on the mylars. He advised that Outlots A, B, and Lot 4 are going to be owned by the Town.

Mr. Kraus asked Mr. Boyer if there is any place that says which one the bank owns, which one the Town owns. Mr. Boyer responded that SJ-96 owns everything, and that he will be signing as SJ-96 as the ownership entity.

Mr. Birlson asked which lots the Town will own. Mr. Boyer responded that the Town will own Outlot A, B and Lot 4.

Mr. Boyer explained that the loss of the 230-foot wide detention pond at the rear of the old Lots 3 and 4, currently Lot 3, was provided at the last minute of the previous plat when there was discussion that the retention pond might have to be shifted farther to the west due to some wetland issues, which were resolved by off-site mitigation. The detention pond is fully within Lot 4.

Mr. Kraus advised that there is a problem building the berm for the detention basin, and they are looking at the drainage easement as a possible place to have additional detention and make the original basin smaller. Mr. Boyer stated that there has been no discussion of that in any meeting he has been in over the last two years. He further stated that he has no knowledge of what Mr. Kraus just referenced.

Mr. Birlson asked if Lots 1A and Lot 1B would have separate driveways. Mr. Boyer responded in the negative. Mr. Birlson asked if the Town is comfortable with the findings of the questionable soils. Mr. Eberly stated that there are still a couple of borings that we are waiting for the result. Mr. Boyer stated that there were four soil borings completed today.

Mr. Boyer stated that before they prepared this plat, they had meetings with members of Haas to ensure the alignment they are showing is what Haas said they would follow. He further stated that Mr. Rettig received the coordinates and the plotting to verify what they did is what the Town Engineer asked them to do, and if it is an incorrect alignment, it is news to him.

Mr. Kennedy asked Attorney Decker if there is a question regarding the plat with what’s being recorded. Attorney Decker responded that his concern has to do with defining the property that the Town is going to purchase. If this plat revision were to be approved and recorded, the Town would be considering purchasing the outlots as opposed to Lot 5.

Mr. Boyer stated that their intent was to have this approved tonight but not recorded until the Town purchased Lot 5 under the old recorded plat.

Discussion ensued.

Mr. Panczuk noted that the Town Council and RDC are considering having special meetings a week from tonight to approve the purchase, so in two weeks, perhaps, the engineers could work through all their checkpoints and then the Plan Commission would have the option to approve that amended plat contingent upon the completion and recording of the sale.

Mr. Phillips asked Attorney Decker if only the approval of the purchase has to take place or does the closing and consummation of the purchase have to take place first. Attorney Decker responded that he believes whether the purchase occurs before or after the recording of the first amended plat is not critical as long as it can be defined.

Mr. Rettig stated that the legal description that was written for the purchase was a part of Lot 5, which coincides with the west line of Outlot A; so it is the same lot. He further stated that Lot 2 is getting bigger and Lot 5 is getting smaller. The Town is only buying part of Lot 5, but the line between Outlot A and Lot 2 is the defined line of what the Town is purchasing.

Mr. Kennedy brought the matter back to the board and entertained a motion to defer the matter to a special meeting just prior to the March18 Study Session.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer the Shops 96 plat revision to March 18, 2020 at a special meeting; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Eberly advised that Mr. Boyer does have the Outlot 2 Crew Carwash.

Mr. Boyer stated that Crew Carwash will be located on the new Outlot 2. It is an all brick and limestone building with decorative architectural metal panel elements on the roof. They have an extensive amount of landscaping on second drawing. The monument signage and the building signage is in accordance with the PUD documents and the Economic Development Agreement.

Mr. Kennedy asked if it would be like the one in Merrillville. Mr. Boyer responded in the negative and stated that they have eliminated some of the footprint of the building and the architectural elements and the look is much different than what is in Merrillville. The vacuums are on the back of the building towards Earl Drive on the east side. This design is a new prototype that he influenced Crew Carwash to build.

Mr. Eberly explained that when the Shops 96 PUD was approved, Mr. Boyer agreed to come back on a lot-by-lot basis and show the plan for each lot. As long as he complies with the PUD, this is just a matter of showing it to the Plan Commission and not a matter of the board acting on the same. Mr. Eberly advised that he will be reviewing this plan to ensure it complies with the terms of the Rezoning PUD Ordinance for this property.

Ms. Wohland asked who attends the construction meetings that Mr. Boyer referenced earlier in the meeting. Mr. Boyer responded that it is a construction meeting to discuss the construction being provided by the Town for 96th Place and Earl Drive, as well as the improvements along US 41, and the engineering for the same to track the progress. He commented that there is a representative from his company, DVG sometimes, Mr. Panczuk or a member of the Council, Haas Engineering, Mr. Eberly has been at most of them. Mr. Eberly noted that Mr. Phillips will be attending those as well.

Mr. Panczuk explained that the Town is installing a new road to make the exit from Joliet Street to US 41 safer by rerouting it to a stoplight and the Town is also installing the detention basin. The Town will own and maintain those improvements and Mr. Boyer will be filling in businesses around there.

B. PUBLIC HEARING ANNOUNCEMENTS
Mr. Kennedy advised that the following projects will have their Public Hearings at the next regular meeting on April 1, 2020.
a. Moonraker Estates
Mr. Kennedy noted that the petitioner will be seeking Primary Plat and Secondary Plat approval of a one-lot subdivision in Castle Rock.
b. AC Group Holdings
Mr. Kennedy noted that the petitioner will be seeking to rezone 2-plus acres of land in the 9500 block of White Oak Avenue from Open Space to R-1 single-family residential lots.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Dennis DeVito (10341 Silver Maple Drive): For what it’s worth, I’m in favor of Mr. Boyer’s development; I think it’s a positive for the community. And unfortunately, what I’m about to say may reflect negatively, but I intend no disrespect to Mr. Boyer. I’ve observed, for the last two years, efforts to accelerate this project. It’s been going on for – I’ve been told – five years. We’re now told tonight we’re forced to expedite something because a road isn’t ready, because a sewer pipe isn’t done, because all this stuff that should have been accomplished years ago has not been. And my message is, I hope this board – and I hope it gets accelerated to the Town Council that you should do your homework, get the job done right, and stop fooling around trying to expedite things that don’t work. We’re now buying lots that we didn’t have to buy. We’re rerouting roads. The money that’s been lost, the delays – Mr. Boyer’s got delays, so we’ve got to live with the delays. We hear it’s another month before anything can be done. How can this be? How is it possible that intelligent people can make such a mess out of what should be a very simple development? Well, simple may be the wrong word, but straightforward. This previous boards, obviously the work tells what kind of work they did, and I just hope this board takes the time, the energy, studies what has to be done, and does correctly and doesn’t squander the money, the time, and the good will of the citizens of St. John. Other than that, it’s a good day. Thank you very much.

ADJOURNMENT:

Ms. Wohland made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously, and Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 8:05 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

03-18-2020 Plan Commission Meeting Canceled
04-01-2020 Plan Commission Meeting Canceled
04-15-2020 Plan Commission Meeting Canceled
05-06-2020 Plan Commission Meeting Canceled
05-20-2020 Plan Commission

May 20, 2020 Plan Commission Study Session Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Study Session to order on Wednesday, May 20, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., which was attended on-site and virtually.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and John Kennedy, President. Also present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: None. A quorum was attained.

Mr. Kennedy thanked everyone for their patience as the boards start to return to meetings in light of the pandemic and explained that no decisions would be made at this Study Session.

NEW/OLD BUSINESS:

A. 2020-0003 OAKRIDGE ESTATES – Introduction of an RC-2 PUD Single-Family Development Plan of 40 Acres on the Northwest Corner of White Oak Avenue and 109th Avenue – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Attorney Tim Kuiper noted that nothing has changed for Items A, B, and C, which are still under litigation, and stated that they would be asking that the items be continued again at the June 3 meeting due to the ongoing litigation.

Mr. Kennedy asked Attorney Decker if he concurred with Attorney Kuiper. Attorney Decker responded in the affirmative.

B. 2020-0004 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of an R-2 PUD Single-Family Development for Unit 24 and Part of Unit 25 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Same as above.
C. 2020-0005 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of an R-2 PUD Single-Family Development for Units 27 and 28 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Same as above.
D. 2020-0006 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Introduction of a Replat of the R-2 PUD Single-Family Development for Unit 22, Lots 2249 through 2258 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy turned the floor over to Attorney Kuiper to discuss the replatting of The Gates of St. John East, Unit 22, Lots 2249 through 2258.

Attorney Kuiper stated that it is the same plan that has been discussed in the February and March Study Sessions. He further stated that this is eligible to move forward with its Public Hearing on June 3, 2020.

Mr. Kennedy asked Attorney Decker if the Board could hold a Public Hearing on this matter. Attorney Decker responded that this petition is eligible for Public Hearing on June 3, 2020.

E. ANTHONY CASBONI – Rezoning from Open Space to R-1 Single-family
Mr. Kennedy advised that Mr. Casboni will be seeking rezoning of just over two acres of his property at 9451 White Oak Avenue from Open Space to R-1 single-family residential to create four one-half-acre plus lots along White Oak Avenue.

Mr. Eberly advised that Mr. Casboni informed him earlier in the day that he would be unable to make the meeting and that he does want to proceed with the rezoning. Mr. Eberly recapped the petition.

Mr. Kennedy noted that there should be a 45-foot dedicated right-of-way for White Oak Avenue and stated he feels there should only be a single-point access road to the lots to minimize the number of private drives on White Oak Avenue for safety purposes. Mr. Birlson and other members concurred.

Mr. Eberly advised that the best time for the Plan Commission to address the access limitations is during the rezoning process.

F. THREE SPRINGS UNIT 3 – Primary Plat Extension – (Petitioner: Dave Barick / Doug Rettig)
Mr. Kennedy advised that Three Springs, Unit 3, would be seeking an extension of the Primary Plat at the June 3 meeting.

Mr. Eberly advised that the petitioner had contacted him in early March for the extension, but due to meeting delays as a result of COVID, this couldn’t be heard sooner.

Mr. Doug Rettig gave a brief history of the parcel of land to explain the necessity of the extension and stated that they would be at the June 3 meeting to request the same.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Eberly to explain the process to the Plan Commission.

Mr. Eberly explained that a primary plat is approved for a period of twelve months. If the project does not begin within 12 months, the petitioner is entitled to come back and request an extension. The maximum allowed extension is six months, but there is no limit on the number of extensions a petitioner may request. There is no specific guidance for the Plan Commission as to granting or denying an extension.

Mr. Dave Barick commented that the need for the extension arose due to engineering changes to the subdivision at the request of the Plan Commission when he was asked to come back in and rezone the property, which stopped everything with the bank. It also resulted in them losing the people that were lined up to work. Mr. Barick noted that Mr. Rettig had redrawn the plans thirteen times, and there is a fortune of money invested in redrawing the plans.

G. WALDEN CLEARING PHASE 2 – Secondary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: Jeff Yatsko, Olthof Homes)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Walden Clearing, Phase 2, seeking Secondary Plat approval.

Mr. Jeff Yatsko, present virtually, stated that they would be requesting Secondary Plat approval at the June 3 meeting for 18 lots. He advised that this would finish the platting for the property north of 93rd Avenue and leave only one more phase to complete on the south side of 93rd Avenue. Mr. Yatsko noted that all the utilities are installed, and they will start on the roads right after the holiday.

Mr. Kraus advised that he would be providing his review letter the following week and that it would include bond amounts for the roads and approximately half of the erosion control issues.

H. GREYSTONE UNIT 2 BLOCK 5 – Secondary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: Michael Tiller)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Greystone, Unit 2, Block 5, seeking Secondary Plat approval.

Mr. Michael Tiller stated that this is the final phase. The only remaining work is the surface course and submission of the Mylars, which should be done within the next week.

Mr. Kraus advised that he would submit his review letter by the end of the week.

I. COMPREHENSIVE PLAN, ZONING ORDINANCE, AND SUBDIVISION CONTROL ORDINANCE UPDATES – Discussion
Mr. Kennedy turned the floor over to Mr. Eberly.

Mr. Eberly presented the draft Subdivision Control Ordinance changes to the Board. Mr. Eberly reviewed the changes page by page and said changes were discussed.

(A copy of bullet-point of changes is attached hereto and made a part therein as Exhibit No. 2020-05-20-PC.)

Note: The Draft Subdivision Control Ordinance that was presented at the meeting can be reviewed in the St. John Building & Planning Office.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 9:41 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

05-20-2020 Plan Commission Exhibit.pdf
06-03-2020 Plan Commission

June 3, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., attended onsite and virtually, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Michael Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. A quorum was attained.

Absent: None.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the meeting minutes for the February 5, 2020, Regular Meeting; Ms. Cardona seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer the March 4, 2020, Regular Meeting and the May 20, 2020, Study Session minutes; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the February 19, 2020, Study Session minutes; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

Mr. Kennedy advised that the Town and BLB St. John have agreed to defer any action on items A, B, C, D, and E on the agenda. Attorney Tim Kuiper, on behalf of BLB and LBL, confirmed the same.

Mr. Kennedy entertained a motion to defer Agenda Items A-E to the July 1, 2020, Regular Meeting.

Mr. Gill made a motion to defer Agenda Items A-E to the July 1, 2020, Regular Meeting based on pending litigation; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

A. 2020-0001 REZONING OF 111 +/- ACRES EAST OF CLINE AVENUE BETWEEN 101ST AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE – Rezone from R-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
This item has been deferred.
B. 2020-0002 REZONING OF 40 +/- ACRES ON THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF WHITE OAK AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE -- Rezone from RC-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
This item has been deferred.
C. 2020-0003 OAKRIDGE ESTATES – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
This item has been deferred.
D. 2020-0004 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNIT 24 AND PART OF UNIT 25 – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
This item has been deferred.
E. 2020-0005 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNITS 27 AND 28 – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
This item has been deferred.
F. 2020-0006 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNIT 22 – Primary Plat Approval for the Replat of Lots 2249-2258 – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Gates of St. John, seeking Primary Plat approval for a replat of R-2 PUD single-family development for Unit 22, Lot 2249-2258.

Mr. Eberly advised that all items are in order for this Public Hearing to proceed.

Attorney Kuiper summarized the history of this portion of The Gates of St. John East. He briefly described the reason for the replatting of a portion of this subdivision. The long lots have been replatted, and it complies with the Zoning Commitment that was agreed to in 2019.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter which finds the plat to be satisfactory. The Developmental Fee and SWPPP are not yet calculated and will be determined at the time of review.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for the Public Hearing and read a Public Comment letter dated 06-03-2020 from Dennis DeVito.

(Mr. DeVito’s letter is attached hereto and made a part thereof as Exhibit No. 2020-06-03-PC1)

Having no one present wishing to speak, he closed the Public Hearing brought the matter back to the board.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve Primary Plat for The Gates of St. John, Lots 2249-2258, referencing the Findings of Fact; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll call vote:

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

G. 2020-0008 Moonraker Estates – (Petitioner: Michelle Chaudry/Doug Rettig, DVG)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Moonraker Estates. Michelle Chaudry is seeking primary and secondary plat approval of a one-lot subdivision.

Mr. Eberly advised that all items are in order for this petition to proceed.

Mr. Rettig explained that this is a 2-acre lot that is being put together from two lots and that each lot is close to 1 acre in size. All the infrastructure is already in place as it is in an established subdivision, Castle Rock.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for the Public Hearing. Having no one wishing to speak, Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the board. He advised that the Primary Plat and Secondary Plat will be two different motions.

Mr. Gill made a motion to grant Primary Plat approval, referencing the Findings of Fact; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to grant Secondary Plat approval, referencing the Findings of Fact; Ms. Cardona seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

H. 2020-0009 AC Holding Group – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Anthony Casboni)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is AC Holdings Group. Anthony Casboni, the petitioner, is seeking to rezone 2-plus acres of land in the 9500 block of White Oak Avenue from Open Space to R-1 Single-Family Residential Zoning. He further advised that the petitioner asked for a deferral and entertained a motion for the same.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer AC Holding Group’s petition to the July 1, 2020, Meeting; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

I. Subdivision Control Ordinance – Amendments to the Ordinance – (Petitioner: Town of St. John)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is the Public Hearing for the amendments to the Subdivision Control Ordinance.

Mr. Eberly advised that all items are in order for this petition to proceed and stated that he would answer any questions that the public may ask during the Public Hearing. He further advised that Attorney Decker conducted his review and prepared the form of ordinance. Mr. Eberly thanked Jason Dravet for his assistance in improving and preparing the document.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for the Public Hearing. Having no one wishing to speak, Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the board.

Mr. Gill made a motion to make a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to accept the changes to Subdivision Control Ordinance; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. SHOPS 96 – Amended Secondary Plat – (Petitioner: Bruce Boyer)

Mr. Kennedy advised that the petitioner requested the item be deferred.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer this matter to the July 1, 2020, Meeting; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

B. GREYSTONE UNIT 2 BLOCK 5 – Secondary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: Jack Slager, Schilling Development)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Greystone, Unit 2, Block 5. Jack Slater, the petitioner, is seeking Secondary Plat approval for this final phase of Greystone.

Mr. Michael Tiller, Schilling Development, advised that the infrastructure is installed and that they have submitted their Letter of Credit.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the Secondary Plat, referencing the Findings of Fact; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Ms. Wohland made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to accept the Letter of Credit in the amount of $28,195.20; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

C. SUMMERLIN ESTATES – Reduction in Letter of Credit – (Petitioner: Olthof Homes/Ed Recktenwall)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Summerlin Estates. The petitioner is seeking a reduction of its Letter of Credit.

Mr. Ed Recktenwall, Olthof Homes, requested a reduction in its Letter of Credit to include the balance for the final surface and common walks.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter, which finds that the current bond may be released and replaced with a bond in the amount of $61,629.75.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to release the original bone and accept the new bond in the amount of $61,629.75 Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

D. WALDEN CLEARING UNIT 2 – Secondary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: Olthof Homes/Ed Recktenwall)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Walden Clearing. The petitioner is seeking Secondary Plat approval for Unit 2.

Mr. Recktenwall noted that this is for 18 lots, which completes the platting for the north side of 93rd Avenue.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory.

Mr. Gill made a motion to approve Secondary Plat for Walden Clearing Unit 2; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to accept the Surety Bond in the amount of $353,786.88; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

E. THREE SPRINGS UNIT 3 – Requesting a 6-month Extension – (Petitioner: Dave Barick/Doug Rettig, DVG)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Three Springs Unit 3. The petitioner is seeking a six-month extension of the Primary Plat for this unit. The petitioner made the request in early March; however, due to the cancellation of the Plan Commission meetings in March and April, related to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the request could not be heard.

Mr. Doug Rettig, DVG, stated that Dave Barick is here with him and summarized the history of the petition and noted that Mr. Barick wants to start Block 1 of the project soon.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review, which finds the plat to be satisfactory. The Developmental Fee and the SWPPP fees will be determined at the time of review.

Extensive discussion ensued regarding pipeline easement safety concerns, the impact more duplexes would create, potential rezoning, and the extension being requested.

Attorney Decker advised that the agenda item is the extension of the Primary Plat approval. The Plan Commission cannot extend only a portion of the Primary Plat. It is an all or nothing on the Primary Plat as approved from a legal standpoint.

Mr. Kennedy advised that they can only consider the extension at this meeting and entertained a motion regarding the same.

Ms. Little made a motion to deny the extension of the Primary Plat approval; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion to deny carried 5 ayes to 2 nays by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Nay
Mr. GilletteAye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Nay

Mr. Barick commented that he is being left no choice.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

Mr. Panczuk thanked Mr. Eberly, Mr. Dravet, Mr. Valois, Attorney Decker, and the Plan Commission for all their work on the Subdivision Control Ordinance and stated that he is happy to be taking the revised Subdivision Control Ordinance to the Town Council for consideration.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Gill made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously, and Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 8:51 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

06-03-2020 Plan Commission Exhibit.pdf
06-17-2020 Plan Commission

June 17, 2020 Plan Commission Study Session Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Study Session to order on Wednesday, June 17, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., which was attended on-site and virtually.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and John Kennedy, President. Also present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: None. A quorum was attained.

Mr. Kennedy thanked everyone for their patience as the boards start to return to meetings in light of the pandemic and explained that no decisions are being made at this Study Session.

NEW/OLD BUSINESS:

A. ANTHONY CASBONI – Rezoning from Open Space to R-1 Single-family
Michael Tiller, on behalf of Schilling Development, noted that they are buying the entirety of the property from Mr. Casboni and will be coming in the future to rezone that property from Open Space to R-1.

Mr. Eberly advised that the original petition will be on the July agenda, and hopefully Mr. Casboni will provide a letter withdrawing the petition.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Tiller who would own the property at the time of that July meeting. Mr. Tiller responded that Schilling Development would be the owners.

B. THREE SPRINGS UNIT 3 – Platting – (Petitioner: Dave Barick / Doug Rettig)
Mr. Rettig stated that he is here representing Dave Barick to discuss what they are presenting as Phase 3, Block 1. The plat has thirteen R-1-sized lots, seven R-2 sized lots, and three R-3-sized lots. None of the lots being presented this evening have pipeline easements within them. The south portion would be presented at a later time. All the south lots were removed, and the lots on the north portion have been renumbered consecutively. They will come in with the primary plat almost immediately if the Plan Commission is favorable to this plan.

Mr. Eberly advised that the earliest this petition could be heard would be on August 5, 2020.

Mr. Kennedy advised that this is just for platting; the zoning is already completed.

Ms. Cardona asked how many duplexes are in this phase. Mr. Rettig responded that there are three duplex lots, which equals six duplex housing units.

Mr. Kennedy asked about connectivity to undeveloped property. Mr. Rettig responded that the street would loop around with connectivity to the south leading into the Schilling property.

C. SUBLIME ESTATES – Seeking to Plat a 9-Lot R-1 Subdivision
Mr. Rettig stated that he is present on behalf of Mike Graniczny to present a 9-lot, R-1 subdivision on the north side of 93rd Avenue just west of Lancer Estates and south of Rose Garden. The intent is to get this engineered and approved to start building early next year. He noted that they have to work around some homes on 93rd Avenue on the curve, one home would be removed in the area of Lots 7 through 9, and there are two outlots at the entrance that would be landscape features.

Mr. Rettig advised that he would be speaking with Mr. Kraus regarding the use of a detention pond that the Town owns just west of Clarmonte Drive as they would like to utilize it for storm-water detention for the roadway. A detention basin isn’t shown as they believe that the amount of storage needed is small and only would require a fraction of an inch in the Town’s basin.

Mr. Rettig noted that the property has wetlands and a floodplain to the north shown as Outlot C. They did a delineation on the property early on that may need to be revisited to ensure it is current. If necessary, they will have some conservation easements to cover those areas.

Mr. Eberly asked Mr. Rettig to confirm the floodplain does not impact any of the building pads. Mr. Rettig confirmed that it is not in the building sites, but it is in the rear-yard areas. None of the homes will require flood insurance. Due to the high ground, there is no concern about getting 2 feet above base flood elevation, and it will just be a natural feature in the backyards.

Ms. Little asked if there are plans to install a turning lane off of 93rd Avenue. Mr. Rettig responded that they would look into that when they do the engineering if it is necessary and noted that he believes Clarmonte has decel lanes. Mr. Eberly confirmed the same.

Ms. Little asked if the entrance to Lot 9 will be directly on 93rd Avenue. Mr. Rettig responded in the affirmative and noted that it is the same location as the existing driveway to that property.

Mr. Kennedy asked if the petitioner has considered a layout where the access to Lot 9 could be from the cul-de-sac. Mr. Rettig responded that it had not been considered. Mr. Kennedy asked that they give serious consideration to developing the project so that there is no direct access to Lot 9 off of 93rd Avenue as the Thoroughfare Plan calls for no private drives.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there would be connectivity to the property on the east, north of the homes. Mr. Rettig stated that there would not be connectivity due to the wetlands.

D. ZONING ORDINANCE UPDATE – Discussion
Mr. Eberly stated that he has several items in the Zoning Ordinance tabbed for updates. He created a list of the changes he would like to see and will be distributing that to the Board soon. It will likely be discussed at two or three Study Sessions before making it to a Public Hearing.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 7:27 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

07-01-2020 Plan Commission

July 1, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Wednesday, July 1, 2020, at 7:02 p.m., attended onsite and virtually, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Jon Gill; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. A quorum was attained.

Absent: Yolanda Cardona, Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and Michael Gillette.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the meeting minutes for the March 4, 2020, Regular Meeting; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer the June 3, 2020, Regular Meeting and the May 20, 2020, and June 17, 2020, Study Session minutes; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

Mr. Kennedy turned the floor over to Attorney Decker to address some of the agenda items.

Attorney Decker advised that agenda items A and B are part of a litigation process, regarding property that was annexed into the Town of St. John on January 1, 2020. The Lake Superior Court issued an Order on June 12, 2020, providing in part that the Court found that Town Code 24-42 is a valid and enforceable ordinance. That is the ordinance that required any property that is annexed into the Town to be zoned R-1 classification unless there’s a unanimous vote of the Town Council to zone it in a different classification. The 111-acre parcel was the issue of Town Ordinance 1691. The Court found that it would be designated and shall be designated as R-1 single-family residential zoning classification; that addresses item A. With regard to item B on the agenda, which is the 40-acre parcel, regarding the 109th Avenue and White Oak Avenue, the Court, in its Order, and specifically in footnote 4 of that order, provides that the 40-acre parcel, which was annexed pursuant to Town Ordinance 1693, shall also be designated with an R-1 single-family residential zoning classification. Therefore, as a result of the Court’s ruling, and the Town Attorney and myself still reviewing that Order, I would recommend to the Board that it defer items A and B at this time.

Mr. Kennedy entertained a motion to defer agenda items A and B.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer agenda items A and B to the August 5, 2020, meeting per Attorney Decker’s recommendation; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Attorney Kuiper requested that Items D and E be deferred on the same principle as items A and B based upon Attorney Decker’s iteration of the Court’s Order. They concur with that. The 111 acres is composed of items D and E.

Mr. Gill made a motion to defer agenda items D and E to the August 5, 2020, meeting based on Attorney Kuiper’s request; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

A. 2020-0001 REZONING OF 111 +/- ACRES EAST OF CLINE AVENUE BETWEEN 101ST AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE – Rezone from R-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
This item has been deferred.
B. 2020-0002 REZONING OF 40 +/- ACRES ON THE NORTHWEST CORNER OF WHITE OAK AVENUE AND 109TH AVENUE -- Rezone from RC-2 PUD to R-1 – (Petitioner: St. John Plan Commission)
This item has been deferred.
C. 2020-0003 OAK RIDGE ESTATES – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Oak Ridge Estates for Primary Plat approval.

Attorney Kuiper stated that he was present on behalf of LBL Development, LLC, on the Oak Ridge subdivision, which contains 40 acres located on the northwest corner on 109th Avenue and White Oak Avenue. Attorney Kuiper reviewed the history of the zoning and annexation of the property. He stated that this is part of Resolution No. 2020-01-01 where the Town Council requested that the Plan Commission start a rezoning process

Attorney Kuiper also reviewed the Court’s Order of June 12, 2020. He asserted that the footnote is not part of a court order and stated that the Court specifically called out in item 49 of the Order, which states, “The Court limits its Order with respect to Resolution 2020-01-01 to the 111-acre parcel that is the subject of the present dispute between the parties and does not intend its Order to include or affect the 40-acre parcel that is also addressed in Resolution 2020-01-01 because the 40-acre parcel is not part of the alleged agreements.” He added that this item, therefore, is proper for the Plan Commission to review, hear, and conduct the Public Hearing.

Attorney Kuiper avowed that the notices are all in place. It was originally noticed on March 4, 2020 with multiple continuances do to circumstances beyond control. He briefly described the 78-lot subdivision, which he said is an RC-2 PUD and that they have met all of the requirements of the Subdivision Control Ordinance. He then requested that the Plan Commission approve the plat.

Mr. Kennedy asked Attorney Decker how to proceed since there is a legal issue. Attorney Decker responded that the Court’s Order makes determination. He re-read the determination he had read earlier in the meeting again for the Board. He noted that it goes back to a dispute initially brought by BLB St. John, LLC, which was sought to enforce the Settlement Agreements previously reached between BLB and the Town. He further stated that the Court is clear in footnote 4 of the Order that St. John Town Code, Section 24-42, requires a unanimous vote of the Town Council when property is annexed into the town for any zoning classification other than R-1.

Discussion ensued regarding the difference of opinion in the zoning, whether a deferral would be an appropriate action, and Mr. Kuiper asserted that plat approval is a ministerial act based on IC 36-7-4-700 et seq. Attorney Decker countered that he does consider that an option. Discussion continued.

Mr. Eberly concurred with Attorney Kuiper that all items are in order for this petition to proceed and that there is a remonstrance letter with a petition in his office.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for the Public Hearing.

Paul Panczuk (8410 Magnolia Street): I approach you as a resident. I would be concerned if you were to approve a plat that is not meeting the requirements of the current zoning as dictated by the town attorneys. Thank you.

Mr. Kennedy read the letter attached to the petition.

(Said letter/petition has been attached hereto and made a part of the record herein as Exhibit No. 2020-07-01-PC1)

Mr. Eberly advised that the agenda was labeled incorrectly and that the subdivision is called Oak Ridge.

Hearing no further comment from the public, Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and entertained any questions comments or motions from the Board.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer. Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion failed by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Nay

Mr. Kennedy noted the lack of a majority vote and entertained any new comments, questions, or motions.

The Plan Commission questioned the zoning the plat should be compared against. Attorney Kuiper iterated that it is his opinion that the zoning is RC-2 PUD, is not subject of the lawsuit, and meets the requirements for platting of the same.

Mr. Kennedy advised that there is a difference of opinion on the ruling in the court case; namely, the Town Attorney and Board Attorney both say it is R-1, and Attorney Kuiper says it is R-2.

Mr. Panczuk commented that both of the attorneys for the Town are saying it is R-1. If the plat is measured against the R-1 standards, it does not meet them. He stated that if they take the Town’s attorneys’ advice, they would deny it. If they ignore their advice, they would have to approve it. He recommended to the Board that they respect our attorneys’ advice, and added that he would respect whatever decision they make.

Mr. Kennedy entertained a motion.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to deny plat approval for Oak Ridge based on the findings of Attorney Decker and Findings of Fact:

  1. That the plat does not provide for acceptable establishment of minimum width, depth, and area of lots within the subdivision inasmuch as it does not meet with minimum requirement of the St. John Zoning Ordinance.
  2. That the plat does provide for acceptable minimum provisions for building separation, vehicular circulation, and parking, compatible site improvements and signage inasmuch as it does meet the minimum requirements of the St. John Zoning Ordinance.
  3. That the plat does provide for the coordination of subdivision streets and entrances with existing and planned streets and highways.
  4. That the plat does provide for the coordination with an extension of facilities included in the Comprehensive Master Plan, including appropriate sanitary sewer, water, and storm water facilities.
  5. That the plat does provide for the fair allocation of areas for streets, parks, schools, public and semi-public buildings, homes, utilities, businesses and industry.
  6. That the plat does provide for distribution of population and traffic in a manner tending to create conditions favorable to health, safety, convenience and harmonious development of the Town of St. John, inasmuch as this development is in compliance with the goals and requirements of the Town of St. John Comprehensive Master Plan currently in effect.
  7. That the plat, including the entire layout of the subdivision, as well as how the plans affect the surrounding area does promote the health, safety, morals, comfort, prosperity, and general welfare of the Town of St. John.
Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion to deny carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Kennedy declared that the motion to deny has passed 4-0. He then thanked Attorney Kuiper for his patience and understanding. Attorney Kuiper thanked the board.

D. 2020-0004 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNIT 24 AND PART OF UNIT 25 – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
This item has been deferred.
E. 2020-0005 THE GATES Of ST. JOHN EAST UNITS 27 AND 28 – Primary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: John Lotton/ Don Torrenga)
This item has been deferred.
F. 2020-0009 AC Holdings Group – Withdrawal of Application – (Petitioner: Anthony Casboni)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is AC Holdings Group. The petitioner, Anthony Casboni, is withdrawing the application for the rezoning of land in the 9500 block of White Oak Avenue.

Attorney Decker advised that acknowledging the withdrawal letter is sufficient and that no vote is required. Mr. Kennedy read the withdrawal letter dated June 24, 2020, into the record and stated that the petition is formally withdrawn from the Plan Commission.

(Said letter has been attached hereto and made a part of the record herein as Exhibit No. 2020-07-01-PC2)

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. SHOPS 96 – Amended Secondary Plat – (Petitioner: Bruce Boyer)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Shops 96 regarding an amended Secondary Plat.

Mr. Eberly advised that this item is not ready to be heard due to an exchange of land that has yet to be completed. Mr. Panczuk informed the board that there are still some adjustments that need to be made.

Mr. Kennedy entertained a motion to defer.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer the Shops 96 Secondary Plat revision to the August 5, 2020, meeting; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

B. PUBLIC HEARING ANNOUNCEMENTS

Mr. Kennedy announced two Public Hearings for the August 5, 2020 meeting.
1. Property at 9541 White Oak Avenue for rezoning from Open Space to R-1 single-family residential
2. Three Springs, Unit 3, Block 1, for a Primary Plat.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Gill made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously, and Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 7:57 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

07-01-2020 Plan Commission Exhibits.pdf
07-15-2020 Plan Commission

July 15, 2020 Plan Commission Study Session Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Birlson called the St. John Plan Commission Study Session to order on Wednesday, July 15, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., attended on-site and virtually.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; and Donna Little, Executive Secretary. Also present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: John Kennedy, President. A quorum was attained.

NEW/OLD BUSINESS:

A. 2020-0011 THREE SPRINGS UNIT 3 – Platting – (Petitioner: Dave Barick / Doug Rettig, DVG)
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is Three Springs, Unit 3. The petitioner will be seeking to plat a combination of single-family and duplex lots on land located north of the pipeline easements at the August 5, 2020, Plan Commission meeting.

Mr. Doug Rettig briefly reviewed the layout of Three Springs, Phase 3, Block 1, which is the north portion of the approved project that had the one-year extension denied.

Mr. Eberly advised that the zoning for a mix of R-1, R-2, and R-3 is already in place.

Ms. Cardona asked if there are any plans for Block 2. Mr. Rettig stated that three lots are already zoned for duplexes and that he believes that Mr. Barick will want to ask for more duplex lots in exchange for the lots they are dropping on the one side of the road.

Mr. Eberly advised that Block 2 would have a Public Hearing when it comes back for a rezoning.

Mr. Panczuk asked if the drainage easement between the two lots would be a swale or easement for access to the lake. Mr. Rettig responded that it is both. Mr. Panczuk asked if that drainage easement could be moved for a potential future bike path by Lots 22 and 23. Mr. Rettig stated that that particular easement could not be moved; however, he said he would look into potential alternates.

B. 2020-0012 The Gates of St. John EAST, UNIT 21 B – Primary Plat – (Petitioner: LBL Development, John Lotton/Don Torrenga, Torrenga Engineering)
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is The Gates of St. John East Unit 21B. The petitioner will be seeking to plat 25 single-family lots as part of the original 108 acres that have been in town for several years.

Mr. John Lotton of LBL stated that they are presenting the Primary Plat for Unit 21B and would be happy to answer any questions.

Mr. Eberly advised that this is currently zoned R-2 PUD, is known as Unit 21B. This property has been in town for years and is not part of the area that is under litigation.

Ms. Little asked if this is part of the existing subdivision. Mr. Lotton responded in the affirmative.

C. CONTINENTAL UNIT 2 – Secondary Plat – (Petitioner: Hickory Terrace, LLC/Doug Rettig, DVG)
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is Continental, Unit 2. The petitioner will be seeking secondary plat approval at the August meeting

Mr. Jack Slager introduced Mr. Kevin Hunt and stated that they are representing Schilling Development/Hickory Terrace. He briefly reviewed the project history and informed the Board that this is the final plat for this phase containing 14 lots. The underground utilities are completed, and the roads are being installed now.

Mr. Birlson asked if there will be a Letter of Credit since this is a private subdivision. Mr. Slager responded that there might be a small one. Mr. Eberly advised that the utilities still belong to the Town. Mr. Kraus noted that a Letter of Credit protects the future purchasers, so it does not matter if it is public or private.

Mr. Gillette asked what provisions are in place for emergency services. Mr. Slager responded that they agreed to have the security access for Police and Fire ready before the first occupancy.

D. 2020-0013 THE PRESERVE EAST – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Schilling Development, Preserve SJ, LLC/Jack Slager)
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve East. The petitioner will be seeking the rezoning of approximately 35 acres in the 9500 block of White Oak Avenue from Open Space to R-1 single-family residential zoning.

Mr. Slager stated that the next three projects are all zoned Open Space and would be brought in to be rezoned. This particular parcel is a 35-acre parcel east of White Oak Avenue, which was the Casboni property. This plan has one access point off of White Oak and another off of 96th. The middle of the property has a lot of low ground and a lake with flood plains and wetlands that will be surrounded by developed lots on the high ground. The project will be zoned R-1. Lot 14 and 15 are over an acre and would front on Alvina Rose Court in the Rosewood development, which will be developed first as they would be coming back in multiple phases. They are hoping to connect a walking path between the east and west parts of the development and potentially connect into Rosewood and across White Oak Avenue into the current bike path in The Preserve. He commented that it would be a nice, unique, high-end development.

E. 2020-0014 THE PRESERVE WEST – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Schilling Development, Preserve SJ, LLC/Jack Slager)
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve West. The petitioner will be seeking to rezone 134 acres of land west of The Preserve and north of 101st Avenue from Open Space to PUD.

Mr. Slager noted that the names of Preserve East and Preserve West might change. The only frontage on this property is on 101st Avenue across from Saddle Creek. It is completely surrounded by Bull Run Ditch as well as wetlands and flood plains and has pipeline easements running through it. Mr. Slager advised that they are allowing extra space to stay away from the three different pipelines that bisect the property.

Mr. Slager commented that they want to rezone this property from Open Space to RC-1 PUD with a mix of 80, 90, and 100-foot lots that will meet or exceed the required minimum lot size. They intend to create an 8-acre lake in the middle of the development with a fountain. This project will connect to Unit 3 of The Preserve, giving a new entrance for The Preserve at 101st Avenue. They intend to expand the bike path up White Oak avenue and ultimately through Saddle Creek and beyond into Greystone.

Mr. Eberly advised that they are well below the density required for R-1. They could have up to 180 lots on this property, but they are proposing 148 lots. They will be stubbing the property to the east and west for potential future development.

Mr. Gillette asked if the bike path could connect to Bramblewood. Mr. Slager responded that he isn’t sure there is access as it could be problematic getting across the creek, but they would try to get it up to 93rd Avenue and be open to making that connection if there is a place to do so. Mr. Gillette asked Mr. Eberly if there is any connection possible. Mr. Eberly responded that he would check the Bramblewood Plat.

Mr. Panczuk asked if they would consider putting in a crosswalk and installing the sidewalk on the south side of 101st Avenue for better connectivity. Mr. Slager stated that he doesn’t believe they would be opposed to making that swap. Mr. Panczuk stated that he would prefer an 8-foot sidewalk.

Mr. Birlson asked if they are getting a favorable response to the 80-foot-wide lots. Mr. Slager responded in the affirmative. Mr. Panczuk requested an access easement to Julia Drive. Mr. Slager agreed to look into it.

F. 2020-0015 GREYSTONE UNIT 3 – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Schilling Development, CWS Holdings, LLC/Jack Slager)
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is Greystone, Unit 3. The petitioner will be seeking to rezone 40 acres on the west side of Calumet Avenue and south of Greystone, Unit 2, from Open Space to PUD.

Mr. Slager advised that this was the Sikma farm. They would like to develop a mix of maintenance-free cottage homes and paired villas built by McFarland Homes and Schilling Construction for a total of 148 units. There is a pipeline at the northern boundary. Additional park space will be added to the park space they dedicated in the previous phase, and they will finish the bike path going east and west through this development. They are stubbing a road for connectivity to the west, which could ultimately provide a stub to State Line Road. They will continue the sidewalk along Calumet Avenue to the school property. There is a professional office space lot at the entrance off of Calumet Avenue.

G. 2020-0015 SUBLIME ESTATES – Primary Plat – (Petitioner: Michael Graniczny/Doug Rettig, DVG)
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is Sublime Estates. The petitioner will be seeking to plat a 9-lot, R-1 subdivision on the north side of 93rd Avenue, west of Lancer Estates.

Mr. Rettig, representing Mike Graniczny and Sublime Estates, stated that this is a 9-lot, R-1 subdivision on the north side of 93rd Avenue just west of Lancer Estates and south of Rose Garden. He noted that nothing has changed on the drawing that was presented the previous month. They will be doing engineering soon, and construction would take place in 2021.

Ms. Little asked if there is any way to connect this property to Rose Garden. Mr. Rettig responded that there are wetlands between that subdivision and Rose Garden.

Mr. Birlson asked if we are putting a sidewalk in along 93rd Avenue. Mr. Panczuk responded that plans are being worked on to have a path on the north side of 93rd Avenue from US 41 to Claremonte because the south side is all wetland.

Mr. Rettig stated that the easement varies along 93rd Avenue based on the subdivision and that they could provide a 50-foot easement.

H. SUBDIVISION CONTROL ORDINANCE – Amendments Discussion
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is a discussion regarding updates to the Subdivision Control Ordinance and revisions to the Zoning Ordinance and turned the floor over to Mr. Eberly.

Mr. Eberly stated that he wants to wait until the Subdivision Control Ordinance is finalized before starting the Zoning Ordinance. He advised that some minor changes and the Street Lighting Control and Design Standards and The Water Distribution Standards are being included in the Subdivision Control Ordinance.

Attorney Decker advised that the Town Council, as the legislative body, may adopt the ordinance, including the amendments. By law, the Town Council must take action within 90 days of the day the Plan Commission met to certify those proposed amendments. By adopting the amended ordinance, it would be returned to the Plan Commission for its consideration with a statement showing those amendments. The Plan Commission would have 45 days to consider the amendments. If the Plan Commission approves the amendments, the ordinance stands as passed by the Town Council in the July meeting.

Mr. Dravet and Mr. Eberly showed and reviewed the revised Subdivision Control Ordinance with the new documents. Mr. Eberly thanked Mr. Dravet for all his help and hard work on editing the Subdivision Control Ordinance.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Gill made a motion to adjourn; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Mr. Birlson adjourned the meeting at 8:22 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

08-05-2020 Plan Commission

August 5, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Wednesday, August 5, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., attended on-site and virtually, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Michael Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. A quorum was attained. Absent: None.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Ms. Wohland made a motion to defer the June 3, 2020, Regular Meeting, the July 1, 2020, Regular Meeting and the July 15, 2020, Study Session minutes; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the meeting minutes for the May 20, 2020, and the June 17, 2020, Study Sessions; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

A. 2020-0011 Three Springs Unit 3, Block 1 – Primary Plat Approval– (Petitioner: Dave Barick/Doug Rettig)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is the Public Hearing for Primary Plat approval for Three Springs Unit 3, Block 1.

Mr. Eberly advised that all items are in order for this petition to proceed.

Mr. Rettig briefly reviewed the project's history, stated that they removed the south half of the project, and requested approval on Block 1, which is the north half of as previously approved plat.

Mr. Kennedy asked if Outlot A will be a grassy area. Mr. Rettig confirmed the same.

Ms. Cardona asked if there are plans to develop any homes on the pipeline easement. Mr. Rettig responded that they would be seeking revisions later and noted that none of the lots have any pipeline easements in them.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for the Public Hearing.

Wayne Cain (9817 Allison Lane): Apparently, I wasn't here a year ago when this was all approved. This is my third time I've been here, and I was just going to say that I think this is very important financially for our home values going forward. And if my neighbor across the street needed to get approval from all his neighbors to put up a fence, had to get signed, registered letters signed at our house – I'm the only one from my subdivision here. And I think the delay, the delay, delay, the fewer, fewer people, the Coronavirus – he had one sign, and I have pictures. He had one sign up that was at the dead-end of a road. Nobody traveled there. I talked to other neighbors; nobody wasn't even aware that this meeting was coming tonight. I think people should be notified, not by a sign on a road, a dead-end road, weeds this high covering the sign from – I – I got pictures if you want to see them.

Okay. And I understand that they put a notice in the paper. Does anyone get the newspapers any longer? You do; well, you're the only one in this room. Know what I mean? But nobody gets the paper; nobody reads it; nobody reads the notifications. And if I had to sign a permit for my neighbor to put up a fence, Mr. Barick should have permission from every homeowner in that subdivision to go forward with a variance that affects our home values. The – I'm proof that I'm the only one in the whole damn subdivision. And I just think he should notify everybody that what he plans to do, lowering the lot sizes, the type of homes he's building affects our value of our homes, that's my suggestion.

Mr. Eberly explained the notification process, stated that there are statutory requirements for notification and that our local requirements for notification exceed statutory requirements. He further advised that the notification was done properly by this petitioner. The petitioner was required to put a sign on the subject property that the notice serves, which is a Town requirement, and the only place on that property that is visible at all is at the end of that road. He further advised that the petitioner is not seeking a variance and that the zoning has been in place for some time. All of the lots in the zoning classifications meet or exceed the minimum square foot lot sizes required.

David Cerven (900 Ridge Road, Munster): I am actually Mr. Barick's and Three Springs attorney. I was here years ago on this particular phase, back in March of '17, and that's just half the file. And at that time, as I understand, that was like the ninth revision. And now here we are three years later and I – I went through your minutes. And I read, and I listened to the minutes as recently as June 3, I guess, when Mr. Barick filed, or when Three Springs filed a request to extend the one-year period because it didn't get accomplished within a year.

And I – I listened to everything that was said, and I listened to the comments, and I heard from Ms. Cardona that acknowledged on that tape at 1 hour, 2 minutes, and 44 seconds into the hearing that she knew that this subdivision, this plat met all the standards back in March of '19 when it was approved. Ms. Wohland also on that said the same thing that all the standards were met. And for some reason, the motion to – the petition to extend was denied. And that's been the first and only time, as I understand, something like that's ever happened. I guess what I have to – just want to say is, if it was okay in March of '19 and met all the standards and nothing has changed, with the exception that he's not even trying to get the property south of the pipeline, it's just everything that's north of it and that – and like I said, it was all approved that everyone acknowledged that it meets the standards, so I just don't see any real basis at all why his petition should be denied him.

You know, this has been going on for years and years, and you know, I haven't been here for much of them, but you know, it – it's costing him a fortune to keep tweaking this thing. And I think if it's – if it's met the standard, it's met the standard and there, there – I just can't see any reason why, why it should be denied. I know there's some concerns about this pipeline and that the Council might have passed an ordinance or considered an ordinance – I see it's on the agenda today, so I'm not even sure if that, the new ordinance has even been passed.

But this petition that we're here on today was filed before the Town Council ever took that issue up. So it all – I mean, so – I mean I go back to '19 of March where it was all fine, met standards. And okay, we didn't get the extension, but we refiled, and we did the refiling properly, and it's been advertised. And I listened to the – the minutes or the Study Session that took place. So it just seems to me that I can't – I can't fathom why, why it should be denied. I think it would just be, you know, there would be no rational basis for it at all. Thank you very much.

Having no one else come forward to speak, Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the Board. Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus' review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory.

Ms. Cardona responded to Attorney Cerven's comments. She stated that an extension is wholly at the discretion of the Plan Commission and that developments with issues such as this take time. She commented that what is presented today does not put homes on the pipelines and that this is doable.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve Three Springs, Phase 3, Block 1, referencing the Findings of Fact; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. CONTINENTAL UNIT 2 – Secondary Plat Approval
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Continental, Unit 2. The petitioner is seeking Secondary Plat approval.

Mr. Jack Slager, representing Hickory Terrace, LLC, stated that the improvements are complete and that the roads are in, except for the surface coat.

Mr. Eberly advised that the fees were paid and that a cash escrow was submitted for the Letter of Credit.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus' review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve Secondary Plat, referencing the Findings of Fact; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Ms. Wohland made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to accept the cash escrow; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

B. SUBDIVISION CONTROL ORDINANCE – Approve List of Amendments from the Town Council
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is the Subdivision Control Ordinance for the Plan Commission to approve a list of amendments recommended by the Town Council.

Mr. Eberly noted that 1707 is the ordinance number for the revised Subdivision Control Ordinance and the list of changes is included in the Commissioners' packets.

The list of changes included:
  1. To include additional standards for lighting and standards for water distribution, including drawings depicting same;
  2. To include provisions allowing building permits with intermediate, rather than final, coat of asphalt;
  3. To require a three (3) year, instead of two (2) year, warranty for infrastructure improvements;
  4. To specify rebar dowels;
  5. To specify red brick warning mats on sidewalks;
  6. To require that fire hydrants be manufactured in the United States of American and to specify the model;
  7. To require all street signs comply with the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Device standards;
  8. To specify the length and location of rebar in sidewalks; and
  9. To require additional specifications for as-built and secondary plat drawings

Attorney Decker advised that, according to state statute, if the Plan Commission approves the amendments at tonight's meeting, then the ordinance that was adopted by the Town Council will stand as passed as of the date of the filing of the Plan Commission's report of approval, which would be done subsequent to tonight's meeting.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the amendments to the Subdivision Control Ordinance as adopted by the Town Council; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

C. PUBLIC HEARING ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Mr. Kennedy advised that the following petitions will have a Public Hearing at the September 2, 2020, Plan Commission Regular Meeting: The Gates of St. John, Pod 21B, for primary plat approval; The Preserve West for rezoning; Greystone, Unit 3, for rezoning; and The Preserve East for rezoning.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Theresa Birlson (9520 Joliet Street): With regard to one of the gentlemen who spoke earlier about the publications for public hearings in town, I just think maybe it be something that the Town consider maybe publicizing more of these hearings on social media sites. I don't know if the Town of St. John has, you know, a Facebook page or something, to make the whole town aware. And I think because the more people in town that are aware of what's going on, the more input we'll get, and you as board members will have more of a consensus of what the people in the town would really like to see happen and what direction the town should be going. And it might make your jobs easier, so just a comment from the gentleman earlier. Thank you.

Mr. Eberly stated that Clerk-Treasurer Beth Hernandez posts them on her Facebook page and emails them to a distribution list. Jason Dravet posts them to the Town's website.

Mr. Dravet advised that the agendas are posted under Residents, Minutes/Meetings and that the Town has a Facebook page where he can post the agendas.

Mr. Eberly stated that the more places we can post the agendas, the better. He further stated that he agrees that almost nobody gets their information from the newspapers. He would like to see the Town go back to the state regulation and only require publication in one newspaper.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 7:44 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

08-19-2020 Plan Commission

August 19, 2020 Plan Commission Study Session Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Study Session to order on Wednesday, August 19, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., attended on-site and virtually.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and John Kennedy, President. Also present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: Jon Gill and Nancy Wohland. A quorum was attained.

NEW/OLD BUSINESS:

A. 2020-0012 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST, UNIT 21 B – Primary Plat – (Petitioner: LBL Development/Don Torrenga, Torrenga Engineering)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking to plat 25 single-family lots as part of the original 108 acres that have been in town for several years.

Attorney Tim Kuiper, representing LBL, LLC, stated that this finishes up the property and should be ready to proceed at the September meeting.

Mr. Eberly advised that this unit is consistent with the original 108 acres. Mr. Kraus concurred that this unit complies with what has been laid out for the in-town subdivision previously.

B. 2019-0010 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST UNITS 21, 23, AND 26 – Secondary Plat Approval
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking Secondary Plat approval for units 21, 23, and 26.

Attorney Kuiper stated that dirt is being moved, and pipes are going in at the project site. This plat is the first of several final plats that will be coming in. The main drive of 105th Avenue is being installed as part of this project. He noted that this complies with the Primary Plat that was approved.

Mr. Kraus noted that between lots 2108 and 2109 on the Primary Plat, there is a 28.49-foot lot that was intended to be the driveway to the new well just to the east of this project that is not shown any longer and is not shown with an easement. The northwest corner is slightly different for Lot 2141 and Lot 2140. The Primary Plat showed it going from the center of the eyebrow cul-de-sac to the northwest corner of the property. Off to the east of lot 2102, the 20-foot emergency overflow spillway lot from the detention basin, they show dashed lines for the lot next to it, but they don’t include that 20-foot for the emergency overflow spillway from the detention basin. That is just a cursory review as he did not have a chance to look at it closely. He noted that Mr. Eberly mentioned another easement that was not showing that he has not had a chance to review.

Mr. Kuiper noted that they hope to have all those differences worked out by the next meeting.

Mr. Eberly stated that he would characterize the differences between the Primary Plat and Secondary Plat as minor changes and added that the Secondary Plat is in substantial compliance with the Primary Plat. There is another easement between 2643 and 2644 that is not on the Secondary Plat that was on the Primary Plat. A couple of easement sizes have changed from 12 feet to 10 feet. He noted that he specifically spoke with John Lotton regarding the 20-foot overflow lot between 2102 and the first lot in Pod 22 to the east. Mr. Lotton informed him that he decided to make that overflow lot part of each of the neighboring lots as a drainage and utility easement. It is noted on the east side of Lot 2102 a 10-foot easement, and he expects to see a matching 10-foot drainage and utility easement on the first lot in Pod 22.

Mr. Kennedy asked what the side-yard setback is for this project. Mr. Eberly responded that it is 6 feet per the zoning commitment. Mr. Kennedy asked how there is a 10-foot easement with a 6-foot side-yard setback. Mr. Eberly stated that the lot is 10 feet wider than what it originally was. Mr. Kraus explained that the 10-foot utility easement would supersede the 6-foot side-yard setback, and as long as the next lot to the east of it also has a 10-foot utility easement, he is fine with it right now, it only has half of the easement, and the detention basin isn’t part of this particular unit.

Mr. Eberly noted that there were two other access points to the well site in the Primary Plat. The fact that we are missing one from this plat is not problematic because there are two other access points. Mr. Kraus advised that it is problematic because the one missing from this particular plat is the driveway. We were going to build a driveway from a private drive into the site where the well would be located.

Mr. Eberly stated that the drive will need to come from one of the other two access points. Mr. Kraus responded that a drive from either of the other two access points would not get to the well site.

Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Kraus if he would follow up with the developer. Mr. Kraus responded in the affirmative.

C. 2020-0016 DALE LENTING, 10810 SCHNEIDER PLACE – One-lot Subdivision – (Petitioner: Dale Lenting)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking to combine two existing lots into a one-lot subdivision approval at 10810 Schneider Place.

Mr. Eberly stated that Mr. Lenting appeared before the Board of Zoning Appeals last month to build a nicer home on a larger lot. As one lot, the property is just short of the minimum 15,000 square feet. The BZA granted the lot-size variance, and he is before you to present his petition for a one-lot subdivision.

Mr. Lenting stated that there was a house that was in the center of the two lots, and he would like to keep it nice and like the other homes in the subdivision. He commented that the neighbors came to the BZA meeting and spoke in favor of this.

Mr. Eberly noted that Mr. Lenting would be present for a public hearing for this one-lot subdivision.

D. 2020-0014 THE PRESERVE WEST – Rezoning– (Petitioner: Schilling Development, Preserve SJ, LLC/Jack Slager)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking a rezoning of roughly 135 acres of land immediately west of The Preserve and north of 101st Avenue.

Mr. Slager noted that the names of Preserve East and Preserve West might change. This property is across from Saddle Creek. There are wetlands and flood plain around the property, and it is surrounded by Bull Run Ditch.

Rezoning for Open Space to RC-1 PUD. The lots will be a mix of 80, 90, and 100-foot lots. RC-1 PUD requires a minimum of 80 x 150, and all lots will meet or exceed that number. An 8-acre lake will sit in the center of the property. Waterleaf Drive will continue across the creek and connect it to the existing Preserve subdivision. There will be a new entrance out to 101st Avenue. They intend to expand the bike path through Saddle Creek and beyond into Greystone. This will be a nice addition to the Preserve.

Mr. Slager stated that they have sent out their notices for the rezoning they are seeking.

Ms. Cardona asked if the purple line is the pipeline. Mr. Slager responded in the affirmative. He noted that three pipelines run through the property from the north and split at the north end of the property. One runs on an angle bisecting southwest through the property. The other two run directly south side-by-side and run through Saddle Creek. Mr. Slager assured that there would be plenty of distance between the pipelines and any homes.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there are any variances other than the size of the lot. Mr. Slager responded in the negative. They will have a variable setback.

Mr. Kraus asked what their water source is and where the sanitary sewer will be and what they would tie into. Mr. Slager described the placement of the two-point loop system they will be installing at the bridge loop out and tie back in at 101st Avenue for a two-point water loop. Mr. Kraus asked if they would be connecting any water lines into Bramblewood. Mr. Slager responded in the negative and explained that there is a big gap with a wide floodplain on both sides of the creek.

Mr. Slager noted that they might request to finish off the sidewalk on the south side of 101st Avenue instead of installing it on the north side.

Mr. Kennedy asked if there is a way to avoid the offset entrances. Mr. Slager commented that they could not line up perfectly with the subdivision across the street because of a home that is currently there.

Mr. Kennedy asked about the connectivity to the east in The Preserves. Mr. Slager responded in the affirmative. Mr. Kennedy asked if that would tie into the bike path that runs to 93rd Avenue. Mr. Slager responded in the affirmative.

Mr. Birlson asked if the green space is a flood zone. Mr. Slager responded in the affirmative. Mr. Birlson asked how many lots are the various widths. Mr. Slager responded that it had not been determined yet.

Mr. Birlson asked what the zoning of the subdivision northwest of this area is. Mr. Eberly responded that it is Bramblewood, which is zoned R-2. Mr. Birlson stated that he would prefer to see more of the larger lots.

Mr. Panczuk asked if the intersection at 101st Avenue will have a left-turn lane for eastbound traffic. Mr. Slager responded in the affirmative. Mr. Panczuk requested that the path they are installing be an 8-foot width to link to the bike path. Mr. Panczuk noted that there is a high percentage of 80-foot lots.

E. 2020-0015 GREYSTONE UNIT 3 – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Schilling Development, CWS Holdings, LLC/Jack Slager)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking rezoning of roughly 40 acres immediately south of Greystone, Unit 2, and is west of Calumet Avenue and north of 109th Avenue.

Mr. Slager advised that this is a 40-acre parcel of land on the west side of Calumet Avenue and south of Greystone, Unit 2, formerly known as the Sikma farm. They would like to develop a mix of cottage homes and duplexes. The sidewalk will be continued to nearly the school property. They are stubbing a road over to that little sliver of land by State Line Road for connectivity to the west. It will be stubbed to the south to the school area. They will continue the bike path. It will be an R-3 PUD, which is what the other sections are zoned. The front-yard setback will be 25 feet.

Mr. Slager noted that the duplexes or the paired villas are around the perimeter and the cottage homes more in the center. It will have curved roads. High development and architectural standards will be required. There will be a professional office lot at the corner.

Mr. Kennedy asked how far west the high school goes compared to the property. Mr. Slager stated it is about

Ms. Little stated that she is not a fan of the paired villas and requested that they reduce the number of duplexes or eliminate them altogether. Mr. Birlson concurred.

Mr. Slager stated that maintenance-free homes are in demand. Quite a few of them are purchased by St. John residents who want to get away from the larger lots and homes. Mr. Slager commented that they have higher-end duplexes and focus on quality. He noted that paired villas in Greystone currently have a value of $250,000 to $350,000 per side.

Mr. Panczuk asked if there is an opportunity to have more professional office spaces in their development. Mr. Slager stated they would wait until they get at least one user before the 5-acre triangle parcel will come in as a one-lot subdivision for multi-use buildings.

F. THE PRESERVE EAST – Rezoning Residential (Petitioner: Schilling Development/Jack Slager)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking rezoning of this property from Open Space to R-1 single-family residential.

Mr. Slager stated that this property lies directly north of Rosewood and is a 30-plus acre parcel with woods and water. It will be zoned R-1 with no special variances. There are a couple of lots that front into Rosewood. They would like to put in a trail to connect the two sides. A variance may be needed for the long cul-de-sac off of White Oak Avenue.

Mr. Birlson asked if the bike path ties into Alvina Court. Mr. Slater responded in the affirmative.

Mr. Kennedy asked if the reason there can’t be more connectivity, because of bad soils, is due to wetlands and DNR telling them they can’t or money. Mr. Slager responded that it is all of that. It just is not possible.

G. THE PRESERVE UNIT 4 – Secondary Plat Approval (Petitioner: Schilling Development/Jack Slager)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking secondary plat approval on September 2, 2020.

Mr. Slager commented that there are two single-family lots that include a small detention area, brings all the previous phases together, and brings the project to the area that will be the park.

Mr. Kraus asked how far along the infrastructure is. Mr. Slager responded that the sewer and water will be completed this week and would start paving the streets next week. The retention pond is in and seeded. Mr. Slager noted that they do not plan on the surface coat this year and will likely ask for a bond on that.

H. GREYSTONE UNIT 1 BLOCK 5 – Secondary Plat Approval (Petitioner: Schilling Development/Jack Slager)
Mr. Kennedy advised that this petitioner will be seeking secondary plat approval.

Mr. Slager said this is the next section of single-family. This will be the third phase of single-family in that subdivision. This will tie into dead-end streets, and this is a two-three year supply of lots. There will be one more single-family phase after this. Sewer and water lines are installed, and Walsh & Kelly started laying the stone for the roadway.

Mr. Eberly stated that Lot 69 is slightly different by about 140 feet smaller than the Primary Plat. This plat substantially complies with the Primary Plat

I. ZONING ORDINANCE UPDATE – Discussion
Mr. Kennedy asked Mr. Eberly if he wished to defer this since a couple of members are absent. Mr. Eberly responded in the affirmative.

Mr. Eberly advised that he handed out a document called the Zoning Ordinance Review to be used as a starting-off point. He emailed an electronic copy to everyone earlier in the day. There are 19 or 20 chapters to the Zoning Ordinance altogether. Several of them have very minor changes or none at all. For instance, Chapters 1 and 2 have no changes. Mr. Eberly recommended doing the changes in a comprehensive manner and cautioned that it would take time to get through all of it. They will only go over this at the Study Session meetings for quite some time.

Mr. Kennedy advised that it will be a motion to the Town Council to recommend the changes.

Mr. Panczuk asked that all the members read the document and call Mr. Eberly if they have any questions.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 8:18 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

09-02-2020 Plan Commission

September 2, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Wednesday, September 2, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., with members attending onsite and remotely, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Jon Gill; Michael Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. A quorum was attained.

Absent: Yolanda Cardona.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the meeting minutes for June 3, 2020, and July 1, 2020, Regular Meetings; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Gill made a motion to defer the August 5, 2020, Regular Meeting and the July 15, 2020, and the August 19, 2020, Study Session minutes; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

Mr. Eberly advised that all the petitioners have met the requirements for their Public Hearings to be conducted this evening.
A. 2020-0012 GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST – Primary Plat – (Petitioner: John Lotton, LBL St. John / Attorney Kuiper)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is the Public Hearing for action on a Primary Plat for The Gates of St. John East Pod 21B, with 25 proposed lots that are part of the original 108 acres on the east side of Cline Avenue between 101st and 109th Avenues.

Attorney Kuiper was present on behalf of LBL Development and reviewed the subject property, a 25-lot subdivision located at the south end of the project, which has been in town for years.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus' review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for the Public Hearing. Having no one come forward to speak, Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the Board.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the Primary Plat for The Gates of St. John Pod 21B. Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Attorney Kuiper requested that the agenda item G, The Gates of St. John East, Units 21, 23, and 26, Secondary Plat, be deferred.

Mr. Gill made a motion to defer item G; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

B. 2020-0013 THE PRESERVE EAST – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Jack Slager, Schilling Development / Preserve SJ LLC)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve East. The petitioner is requesting to rezone roughly 35 acres of land in the 9500 block of White Oak Avenue from Open Space to R1 single-family residential

Mr. Slager requested a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to zone this project from Open Space to R-1. Mr. Slager showed a conceptual drawing and noted that they had the engineering is not done yet.

Mr. Gillette asked how the bike path would tie into the existing Preserve. Mr. Slager explained the bike path they currently have runs along the west side of White Oak Avenue and stops near the north limit of Rosewood. They intend to continue the bike path up along the west side of White Oak Avenue to 93rd Avenue and tie it into this development with a crosswalk at the entrance on the north side of Lot 1.

Mr. Slager noted there would only be one entrance from White Oak Avenue with proper accel/-decel lane with no direct driveways onto White Oak Avenue. A roadway connection to 96th is impossible due to wetlands, flood plains, and waterways. There is approximately a 10-foot path that could connect the two sides for walking and biking.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for the Public Hearing.

Jean Mizicko, 12480 Acorn Court, remonstrated against this project due to drainage issues.

Wayne Piotrowski, 12491 W 94th Court, remonstrated against the project as he doesn't wish to lose the view of the natural wildlife habitat.

Jason King, 9468 Hilltop Drive, remonstrated against the project as he bought his property for the open space and views of nature.

Larry Ellis, 9721 Rosewood Drive, inquired how the two lots at the bottom of the plat will be accessed and remonstrated against the new subdivision due to the Town's recent water issue.

Jody Ellis, 9721 Rosewood Drive, remonstrated against the project because of drainage issues and loss of the natural surroundings.

Having no one else coming forward to speak, Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the Board. He asked Mr. Kraus to address some of the items mentioned.

Mr. Kraus addressed the water issue, which is due to the drought and additional watering of the lawns, and assured everyone that the Town has plenty of water to serve the subdivisions listed on the agenda tonight.

Mr. Panczuk explained what the Town was doing to address the water issue due to the drought this past summer.

Mr. Slager stated that they were just made aware of some of the drainage problems and explained that the drainage comes from the north and flows through the middle of the project. The previous owner had blocked it off, and they will be removing that obstruction. Mr. Slager noted that the wildlife preservation was removed before they purchased the land. He also noted that the two lots at the south would front into Rosewood Estates on Alvina Rose Court, which is a public road. The homes will meet or exceed the building requirements in the covenants of Rosewood Estates.

Mr. Eberly advised that 17 single-family homes could be built on Open Space with R-1 zoning; they are presenting 30 single-family homes.

Mr. Slager stated that this is a rolling parcel with homes and homesite values of approximately $800,000 to $1 million. He advised that they will be seeking a waiver for the cul-de-sac length.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to rezone this parcel from Open Space to R-1. Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carries 5 ayes to 1 nay by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Nay
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

C. 2020-0014 THE PRESERVE WEST – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Jack Slager, Schilling Development / SJ LLC)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve West. The petitioner is requesting to rezone 134 acres lying west of The Preserve, north of 101st Avenue and east of Calumet Avenue. The request is to rezone the property to RC-1 PUD to develop a single-family subdivision containing roughly 148 lots resulting in a density of 1.1 lots per acre

Mr. Eberly advised that the number of lots has been reduced to 136 lots to have wider lots than what was introduced originally.

Mr. Slager stated that they would like to rezone this from Open Space to RC-1 PUD. They want to preserve the land, and they are looking at digging an 8-acre lake in the project. It is a mix of 66 lots at 80 feet, 22 at 90 feet or better, and 46 lots at 100 feet or better. They will allocate land and set it to the side to continue the bike path from Saddle Creek that will run up along the creek, cross the creek at the bridge on Waterleaf Drive, and run up to 93rd Avenue. Of the approximate 134 acres, 73 acres will be Open Space.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for Public Hearing.

Leslie Poplon, 9555 Julia Drive, requested they preserve the natural areas as promised.

Ron Johnson, 9595 Julia Drive, spoke about drainage and traffic issues and did not want to lose the open space area.

Joyce Buikema, 9645 Julia Drive, requested that they avoid developing anything on the west side of the tree line.

Jeanne Degrauwe, 14310 W 101st Avenue, requested a permanent barrier between the project and her property, a horse farm on 16.8 acres just west of the project, and she is concerned for the safety of the horses.

Kevin Kreis, 9705 Julia Drive, remonstrated against the loss of open space and expressed concern about the water shortage issues.

Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the Board.

Mr. Slager advised that the density is 1.4 and that the green space would be a mix of manicured landscaping and natural greenspace. He noted that they don't search out properties; sellers come to them when they are ready to sell and offer them the land first due to the developments they build. Mr. Slager stated they require trees to be planted by builders and homeowners in addition to the trees they plant. A total of 73 acres of the 134 acres is being left as green space. The ultimate buildout timeline of this area is approximately ten years.

Mr. Birlson asked if they are allowed to plant trees in a flood plain. Mr. Slager responded in the affirmative.

Ms. Little asked if they would be willing to go with a lower density. Mr. Slager stated that they would look at manipulating the numbers, and he would be comfortable with a cap of 136 lots.

Mr. Birlson stated that the Plan Commission Members legally could not stop development based solely on the homeowners' desires to preserve the view. Ms. Little stated that, while that is true, they can require less density. Discussion ensued.

Mr. Eberly requested that the requested barrier be addressed. Mr. Slager agreed to take it back to the development team.

Ms. Wohland made a motion to defer; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

D. 2020-0015 GREYSTONE UNIT 3 – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Jack Slager, Schilling Development / CWS Holdings)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Greystone, Unit 3. The petitioner is requesting to rezone 40 acres of land on the west side of Calumet Avenue immediately south of Greystone, Unit 2, from Open Space to R-3 PUD to develop 148 units in a combination of single-family cottage homes and duplexes, resulting in a density of 3.7 units per acre.

Mr. Slager requested to rezone this parcel from Open Space to R-3 and C-1, containing 47 paired villas (duplexes), 50 cottage homes, and one commercial lot. They tweaked the design since the last Study Session to eliminate four duplex lots, rework the streets, extend the park area a bit, and add a C-1 professional office lot along Calumet Avenue. The sidewalk along Calumet Avenue will be extended towards the schools. The project will have extensive landscape and design requirements with maintenance-free units. The cottage homes are averaging $350,000 to $400,000 each; the duplexes averaging $250,000 to $350,000 per side. The change makes it 140 units on 40 acres. In exchange, he would request a right-in/right-out between Lots 2 and 3 so that all the traffic for those businesses is not going into the subdivision.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for Public Hearing.

Anna Urquiza, 14928 109th Avenue, Dyer, expressed concern about the impact the additional wells may have on her well water on her land and wanted to know how and when she will be informed of that impact. (Mr. Kraus explained how the well-testing process and the well-distribution system work.)

Theresa Birlson, 9520 Joliet Street, commented that she feels it would be advantageous to have a community center in that area to keep senior citizens moving into that area to maintain the higher home values.

Mr. Kennedy closed the Public Hearing and brought the matter back to the Board.

Mr. Slager stated that the buyers for this area are typically retired residents due to maintenance-free living.

Mr. Birlson stated that he is concerned with the amount of cottage homes and paired villas. Discussion regarding density and duplexes ensued.

Mr. Kennedy called for a motion several times. None were forthcoming, so Mr. Slager requested a deferral.

Ms. Little made a motion to defer; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

E. GREYSTONE UNIT 1 BLOCK 5 – Secondary Plat Approval – (Petitioner: Jack Slager, Schilling Development / CWS Holdings)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Greystone, Unit 1, Block 5, for Secondary Plat approval and read Mr. Kraus' review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory. The Developmental Fee for this project is $14,945.92. A Letter of Credit in the amount of $45,048.30 or Surety Bond in the amount of $53,238.90 should be submitted to the Town to ensure completion of the public improvements.

Mr. Eberly advised that the Developmental Fee was paid and that a Letter of Credit has been submitted.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the Secondary Plat. Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to accept the Letter of Credit in the amount of $45,048.30; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

F. THE PRESERVE UNIT 4 – Secondary Plat – (Petitioner: Jack Slager, Schilling Development / CWS Holdings)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve, Unit 4, for Secondary Plat approval and read Mr. Kraus' review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory. The Developmental Fee for this project is $25,736. The developer has requested that the signature on the mylars be withheld until all the public improvements are completed.

Mr. Slager stated that the Developmental Fee was paid earlier in the day.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the Secondary Plat. Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

G. 2020-0010 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST UNITS 21, 23, and 26 – Secondary Plat – (Petitioner: John Lotton LBL Development / Attorney Kuiper)
This item was deferred as noted in item "A" above.
H. PUBLIC HEARING ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Mr. Kennedy advised that Dale Lenting will have a Public Hearing at the October 7, 2020, Plan Commission Meeting for Primary Plat approval of a one-lot subdivision, Lenting Addition, at 10810 Schneider Place.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 10:00 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

09-16-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

September 16, 2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Special Meeting to order on Wednesday, September 16, 2020, at 7:02 p.m., which was attended on-site and virtually, and led all in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: Donna Little, Executive Secretary. A quorum was attained.

A. 2019-0010 THE GATES OF ST. JOHN EAST UNITS 21, 23, AND 26 – Secondary Plat – (Petitioner: John Lotton)

Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Gates of St. John East. The petitioner is seeking Secondary Plat approval of Units 21, 23, and 26.

Attorney Tim Kuiper stated that this project contains 135 Lots in The Gates East. He referenced Mr. Kraus’ review letter dated September 15, 2020, and asked for signatures to be withheld on the Mylars until the improvements are completed, inspected, and approved.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory with the following exceptions and/or omissions:

a. Lots 2108 and 2109 have been removed from this plat. There was planned a 28.49’ wide Outlot between these lots that was to serve as a stormwater easement and access drive to the future Town Well #8.
b. Lots 2140 and 2141 have a different configuration that makes Lot 2140 smaller and Lot 2141 larger. Together they have the same square footage as shown on the Primary Plat.

Mr. Panczuk asked about the well easement. Attorney Kuiper responded that the well easement would be in the next phase. Mr. Kraus stated that lots 2108, 2109, and an outlot that would serve as an access easement for the future well site were removed from this plat and would be included in another phase.

Mr. Kennedy asked if the reduction in the size of Lot 2140 would cause an adverse effect. Mr. Eberly responded that it would not because the total square footage of Lots 2140 and 2141 is the same.

Ms. Cardona asked if there are any other changes to the Primary Plat. Mr. Kraus noted that Lots 2140 and 2141 are the only change as Lots 2108 and 2109 are simply on a different plat. Attorney Kuiper noted that Lot 2102 had an easement for stormwater included inside the lot rather than a separate outlot. Mr. Kraus advised that the lot next to Lot 2102 will have an easement for the outlot of the detention basin and to provide an overland flow for an emergency spillway.

Mr. Gill made a motion to approve the Secondary Plat for The Gates of St. John Units 21, 23, and 26, contingent upon receipt of the development fee and withholding signatures on the Mylars until improvements are complete; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

PUBLIC COMMENT:

None was had.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 7:15 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

09-16-2020 Plan Commission Study Session

September 16, 2020 Plan Commission Study Session Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Study Session to order on Wednesday, September 16, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., with members attending on-site and virtually.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent Donna Little, Executive Secretary: A quorum was attained.

NEW/OLD BUSINESS:

A. 2016-0016 DALE LENTING, 10810 SCHNEIDER PLACE – One-Lot Subdivision
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Dale Lenting of 10818 Schneider Place. The petitioner will be seeking to combine two existing lots into one lot. He received a lot size variance from the BZA on July 20, 2020, for the lot that would result from this combination of the two existing lots.

Mr. Eberly advised that this will be on the October 7, 2020, meeting for the Public Hearing. Mr. Lenting will be asking for Primary Plat and Secondary Plat approval, which is standard procedure for a one-lot subdivision.

Ms. Wohland commented that there were neighbors who spoke in favor of his petition at the Board of Zoning Appeals meeting.

B. 2020-0014 THE PRESERVE WEST – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Schilling Development, Preserve SJ, LLC/Jack Slager)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve West, former Buchmeier property, for a continued discussion regarding the rezoning of the roughly 135 acres of land immediately west of The Preserve and north of 101st Avenue. This matter was deferred at the last meeting.

Mr. Slager noted that they were here at the last meeting to request 136 lots at about a 1-unit per acre density. He noted that they eliminated all the 80-foot wide lots. The project shown now has 137 lots with sixty 90-foot lots and seventy-seven 100-foot lots. The green space decreased from 73 acres to 70 acres. The plan is still a conceptual plan and may change at engineering. They are reserving land for a bike path and will have a walking trail on the east side of the lake. The distance between the two entrances between this subdivision and Silver Leaf on the south side of 101st avenue is 250 feet.

Mr. Slager stated that they meet or exceed the standards of an R-1 subdivision from a developmental standpoint. Mr. Eberly confirmed the same.

C. 2020-0015 GREYSTONE UNIT 3 – Rezoning – (Petitioner: Schilling Development, CWS Holdings, LLC/Jack Slager)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Greystone Unit 3, the former Sikma property, to continue to discuss rezoning of the roughly 40 acres immediately south of Greystone, Unit 2, which is west of Calumet Avenue and north of 109th Avenue, from Open Space to a combination of R-3 PUD and C-1 PUD.

Mr. Slager stated that this property is currently zoned Open Space, and they want to rezone it to an R-3 PUD and a C-1 PUD. The school property is to the south and Calumet Avenue to the east. Mr. Slager noted that Mr. Ron McFarland of McFarland homes is here this evening to answer questions about the units themselves.

Mr. Slager stated that when they buy a piece of land, they look at what will be the highest and best use. They feel that their request is the right product for this land. Mr. Slager read and referenced residential development in the Comprehensive Plan. He noted the request for that product and added that this property is on the fringe of town.

Mr. Slager asked the Plan Commission if duplexes are completely off the table or if they are simply wanting more space between the residences.

Mr. McFarland spoke about the similarities between the cottage homes and duplexes and noted that the split is about a 50-50 split of those wanting duplexes and those wanting cottage homes. He commented that the cottage homes are $325000 -$450,000. Duplexes are $250,000 per unit. Mr. McFarland noted that the mix of homes is fairly equal.

Mr. Slager commented that they did do an R-2 layout to show the difference, but it is a grid pattern and not very pleasing to the eye. Mr. Slager also noted that they require high architectural standards in their developments.

Multiple Commissioners expressed a desire for more single-family residences on larger lots.

Mr. Slager responded that they started with this type of product in Greystone, and it is what they would like to continue to provide.

D. THE PRESERVE EAST – Primary Plat for a Two-Lot Subdivision
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve East. The petitioner will be seeking a public hearing in November for a two-lot subdivision whose lots will front on Alvina Rose Court in Rosewood. All infrastructure is already in place.

Mr. Slager noted that this will be The Preserve at Rosewood Estates that received a favorable recommendation to the Town Council. The design will exceed the requirements of Rosewood Estates. Mr. Slager stated that they would like to have the primary plat public hearing at the November meeting pending the approval of the Town Council.

E. FAMILY EXPRESS – Release of Letter of Credit
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Family Express for a release of a Letter of Credit.

Mr. Eberly advised that the release of the bond requires action for a recommendation from the Plan Commission that the Town Council would act upon at a meeting following said recommendation.

F. ZONING ORDINANCE UPDATE – Discussion
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is the Zoning Ordinance to discuss potential revisions.

Mr. Eberly commented that he sent the members his recommendation for changes to Chapters 1-11. He knows that the members have only had the recommendation for a few days and that it is up to them if they wish to discuss them tonight or have more time to review them first.

Mr. Eberly noted that the setback should be measured to the foundation, not the overhang of the structure since rooflines can change. He further noted that he included a copy of an ordinance that was created a couple of years earlier to make that change as an example; however, it was never acted upon.

Mr. Eberly asked Attorney Decker if the Zoning Ordinance can tie the hands of the Board of Zoning Appeals with language on a variance. Attorney Decker responded that the Board of Zoning Appeals is the only body that can approve or deny variances from development standards in the Zoning Ordinance unless it is part of a PUD.

Mr. Kennedy advised the members to make their comments to Mr. Eberly and the other board members by email so everyone can be prepared to discuss them at the October Study Session.

The Commission discussed the need to have a prohibited tree list that matches that of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and discussed the dangers to infrastructure for trees planted in the parkways in subdivisions.

Mr. Panczuk brought up changing the Zoning Ordinance and the Comprehensive Plan what is currently deemed “Town Center”; and the Commission had a brief discussion on the same.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 8:42 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

10-07-2020 Plan Commission

October 7, 2020 Plan Commission Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting to order on Wednesday, October 7, 2020, at 7:00 p.m., with members attending on-site and remotely, and led all in The Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Rick Eberly, Building & Planning Director; Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. A quorum was attained.

Absent: Jon Gill and Michael Gillette.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

Ms. Wohland made a motion to defer the September 2, 2020, Regular Meeting, the August 19, 2020, and the September 16, 2020, Study Session minutes; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the meeting minutes for the August 5, 2020, Regular Meeting, the July 15, 2020, Study Session, and the September 16, 2020, Special Meeting; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

PUBLIC HEARINGS:

A. 2020-0022 LENTING ADDITION – One-Lot Subdivision – (Petitioner: Dale Lenting)
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Lenting Addition. The petitioner is seeking to replat two existing lots into a one lot subdivision at 10810 Schneider Place and was previously granted a lot-size variance from the BZA in July of this year.

Mr. Eberly advised that all items are in order for this petition to proceed.

Mr. Lenting noted that there was a house built on two lots before, and he would like to build a new house on those lots as a one-lot subdivision.

Mr. Kennedy opened the floor for Public Hearing. Having no one come forward to speak, Mr. Kennedy brought the matter back to the Board.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter, which finds that the plat is satisfactory. The Developmental Fee for this project is $900.00.

Mr. Kraus advised that the plat he has is ready for Secondary Plat.

Mr. Eberly advised that the Developmental Fee has been paid and further advised that both plats could be acted upon at this meeting with the understanding that the Secondary Plat won’t be signed for an additional 30 days.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the Primary Plat for Lenting Addition; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote:

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

Mr. Birlson made a motion to approve the Secondary Plat for Lenting Addition; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote:

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. THE PRESERVE WEST – Rezone from Open Space to RC-1 PUD (Petitioner: Schilling Development/Preserve SJ LLC) -- Continued Discussion
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is a continued discussion relative to action on a request to rezone 134 acres lying west of The Preserve, north of 101st Avenue and east of Calumet Avenue from Open Space to RC-1 PUD to develop a roughly 137-lot single-family residential subdivision with a density of 1.01 lots per acre. The public hearing was held and closed at the September 2, 2020, meeting.

Attorney Kevin Hunt, General Counsel for Schilling Development, stated that they would like to rezone this from Open Space to RC-1 PUD. The development has no back-to-back lots. All 80-foot lots have been eliminated. The project will contain sixty 90-foot lots and seventy-seven 100-foot lots. The covenants will be very strong with high building requirements.

Mr. Eberly advised that all lots are at least 150-feet deep. The density is 1.01 units per acre on the proposal, which is under the 1.4 density allowed in an RC-1 PUD development. Both cul-de-sacs are longer than allowed in the old Subdivision Control Ordinance, which this plan needs to meet. If this plan is approved, you are accepting all these variances in conjunction with that plan.

Attorney Decker advised that if no action is taken at this meeting, a recommendation will have to go to the Town Council as a “no recommendation”.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council; Ms. Cardona seconded the motion. Motion carried 4 ayes to 1 nay by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Nay
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

B. GREYSTONE UNIT 3 – Rezone from Open Space to R-3 – (Petitioner: Schilling Development) – Continued Discussion
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is Greystone, Unit 3, to request rezoning of 40 acres of land lying west of Calumet Avenue immediately south of Greystone, Unit 2, from Open Space to R-3 PUD to develop 144 units, with a density of 3.6 units per acre, in a combination of single-family cottage homes and duplexes consistent with Greystone, Unit 2. The public hearing was held and closed at the September 2, 2020, meeting.

Attorney Hunt requested a deferral as Mr. Slager, who was unable to attend this meeting, has other options to present to the Board.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to defer; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

C. Letters of Credit Releases
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is to release the Letters of Credit for Family Express; The Gates of St. John, Unit 10M; The Gates of St. John, Unit 6D; The Gates of St. John, Unit 7F; Greystone, Unit 1, Block 2; Greystone, Unit 1, Block 3; Greystone, Unit 2, Block 1; Greystone, Unit 2, Block 2; The Preserve, Unit 2; The Preserve, Unit 3; Shops 96; and Walden Clearing, Unit 1.

Mr. Kennedy read Mr. Kraus’ review letter of the release, which stipulated that The Gates of St. John, Unit 7F and Shops 96 had not submitted as-built drawings and that a check in the amount of $5000 to cover the cost of the As-Built Drawings for the Gates of St. John Unit 7F was promised to be delivered today. If the check has been submitted, the Letter of Credit for this project may be released.

Mr. Eberly advised that he did receive a $5000 escrow check from BLB Development for The Gates of St. John, Unit 7F; however, he had not received anything for Shops 96.

Ms. Wohland made a motion to approve to send a letter of recommendation to the Town Council to release the Letters of Credit for Family Express; The Gates of St. John, Unit 10M; The Gates of St. John, Unit 6D; The Gates of St. John, Unit 7F; Greystone, Unit 1, Block 2; Greystone, Unit 1, Block 3; Greystone, Unit 2, Block 1; Greystone, Unit 2, Block 2; The Preserve, Unit 2; The Preserve, Unit 3; and Walden Clearing, Unit 1; Mr. Birlson seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

D. THE PRESERVE UNIT 4 – Letter of Credit
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is The Preserve, Unit 4, regarding its Letter of Credit. The secondary plat was approved at the September meeting with the condition that signatures be withheld from the plat until all improvements were completed. Subsequently, the developer decided to put up a letter of credit so that the plat could be signed. The Plan Commission needs to recommend acceptance by the Town Council of that letter of credit.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to send a favorable recommendation to the Town Council to accept the Letter of Credit in the amount of $79,835.80; Ms. Little seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

E. PUBLIC HEARING ANNOUNCEMENTS:

Mr. Kennedy advised that the following petitions will have a Public Hearing at the November 4, 2020, Plan Commission Regular Meeting: The Preserve at Rosewood Estates, Unit 1, for Primary Plat, and Continental, Unit 2, for an amended Primary Plat.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Leslie Poplin, 9555 Julia Drive, expressed concern over the loss of trees and vegetation from the construction of The Preserve and requested a much less dense subdivision.

Chris Lafond, 10236 Windsong Way, remonstrated against all the development in Hanover Township because it is causing a hardship to the school district and expressed concern over the lack of parks available.

Kevin Kreis, 9705 Julia Drive, expressed concern for all the development going on and the loss of open space and natural areas.

Attorney Hunt noted that there would be conservation easements and hope to maintain as many trees as possible.

Mr. Kennedy noted that Mr. Rick Eberly is moving on to better things. He has elevated the Building and Planning Department, and Mr. Kennedy appreciates everything that Mr. Eberly has done for St. John.

The other members, Mr. Kraus, Mr. Panczuk, and Mr. Phillips gave heartfelt goodbyes to Mr. Eberly. Mr. Eberly returned the kind sentiments to everyone.

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 7:59 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

10-21-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

October 21, 2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Birlson called the St. John Plan Commission Special Meeting to order on Wednesday, October 21, 2020, at 7:05 p.m., which was attended on-site and virtually, and led all in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and Nancy Wohland. Also Present: Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: John Kennedy, President. A quorum was attained.

PUBLIC HEARING:

A. Amending the Thoroughfare Plan in the Comprehensive Plan
Mr. Birlson advised that the next item on the agenda is amending the Thoroughfare Plan in the Comprehensive Plan to add the section of Cline Avenue from 93rd Avenue to 101st Avenue to add it to a Federal Aid Route application, and we need to add a road between the parallel railroad tracks connecting Joliet Street to US 231. Additionally, we are adding a Zone Improvement Plan to the Comprehensive Plan as a prerequisite to adopting a Road Impact Fee.

Mr. Panczuk explained the reason for amending the Thoroughfare Plan in the Comprehensive Plan. The Plan Commission viewed the maps on the media screen and discussed those areas of the map that are being amended.

Mr. Kraus noted that the proposed extensions run through significant wetland areas. The cost of the Cline Avenue extension several years ago was approximately $1.5 million to complete without the poor soils being included in that cost. Those roads will not be normal roads being built in those areas; possible poor soils will need to be taken into account. Mr. Phillips responded that those have been taken into consideration in the cost estimates on the application being submitted to NIRPC, which does include the construction of a bridge to get over Beaver Dam Ditch as well as adjacent wetland areas.

It was noted that this would be a multi-year project that is being submitted now to try and obtain federal funding to help offset the cost of this project. Should the Town be awarded the grant for the funding, it would cover 70% of the cost, on average.

Mr. Birlson opened the floor for public comment.

Theresa Birlson, 9520 Joliet Street, expressed thanks to the Council for their efforts in trying to resolve some of the traffic issues that have been around for a long time.

Having no one else wishing to comment, Mr. Birlson closed the public hearing, brought the matter back to the Plan Commission, and entertained a motion.

Ms. Little made a motion to amend the Thoroughfare Plan in the Comprehensive Plan; Ms. Wohland seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye

Attorney Decker advised that under IC 36-7-4-508(b), upon approval, the Plan Commission shall certify the amendment to the Town Council for its consideration.

ADJOURNMENT:

Ms. Wohland made a motion to adjourn the special meeting; Mr. Gill seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little Aye
Ms. Wohland Aye

Mr. Birlson adjourned the meeting at 7:15 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

11-18-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

November 18, 2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting Minutes

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Kennedy called the St. John Plan Commission Special Meeting to order on Wednesday, November 18, 2020, at 7:03 p.m., which was attended on-site and virtually, and led all in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners present: Robert Birlson, Vice President; Yolanda Cardona; Jon Gill; Mike Gillette; Donna Little, Executive Secretary; and Nancy Wohland; and John Kennedy, President. Also Present: Craig Phillips, Town Manager; Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer; Adam Decker, Board Attorney; Bryan Blazak, Councilman; and Paul Panczuk, Town Council Liaison. Absent: None. A quorum was attained.

OLD/NEW BUSINESS:

A. Discussion – Proposed Comprehensive Plan Amendment to Incorporate a Road Impact Fee Zone Improvement Plan
Mr. Kennedy advised that the next item on the agenda is to discuss the incorporation of a Road Impact Fee Zone Improvement Plan in the Comprehensive Plan. This is to authorize Mr. Phillips to advertise a Notice of Public Hearing at our next meeting on December 2, 2020, on the Road Impact Fee Study to allow for public viewing of the report. Mr. Kennedy entertained a motion for the same.

Mr. Birlson made a motion to authorize Craig Phillips to advertise the Notice of Public Hearing for the Road Impact Fee Zone Improvement Plan to be amended into the Comprehensive Plan, allowing for public viewing of the report; Mr. Gillette seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously by a 6-0 roll-call vote.

Mr. Birlson Aye
Ms. Cardona Aye
Mr. Gill Aye
Mr. Gillette Aye
Ms. Little (No vote due to technical issues.)
Ms. Wohland Aye
Mr. Kennedy Aye

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Kennedy adjourned the meeting at 7:10 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted;

Margaret R. Abernathy, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission

Meeting Video Recordings may be found on the Town's YouTube channel

Meeting Audio Recordings

01-07-2020 Plan Commission

01-15-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

01-15-2020 Plan Commission Study Session

02-05-2020 Plan Commission

02-19-2020 Plan Commission

03-04-2020 Plan Commission

05-20-2020 Plan Commission

06-03-2020 Plan Commission

06-17-2020 Plan Commission

07-01-2020 Plan Commission

07-15-2020 Plan Commission

08-05-2020 Plan Commission

08-19-2020 Plan Commission

09-02-2020 Plan Commission

09-16-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

09-16-2020 Plan Commission Study Session

10-07-2020 Plan Commission

10-21-2020 Joint Town Council Plan Study Session

10-21-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

11-04-2020 Plan Commission

11-09-2020 Plan Commission

11-18-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

11-18-2020 Plan Commission Study Session

12-02-2020 Plan Commission

12-16-2020 Plan Commission Special Meeting

12-16-2020 Plan Commission Study Session

Accessibility  Copyright © 2021 Town of St. John, Indiana Accessible Version  Follow us on Facebook Logo