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APPROVED MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
OF THE KENTWOOD PLANNING COMMISSION
JULY 28, 2015, 7:30 P.M.
COMMISSION CHAMBERS
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  1. Vice-Chair Holtrop called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.
 
  1. The Pledge of Allegiance was led by Commissioner Bridson.
 
  1. Roll Call:
Members Present: Bill Benoit, Emily Bridson, Garrett Fox, Dan Holtrop, Sandra Jones, Ed Kape, Mike Pemberton, Frank Vander Hoff
Members Absent: Johngerlyn Young
Others Present:  Community Development Director Terry Schweitzer, Economic Development Planner Lisa Golder, Planner Joe Pung
 
            Motion by Fox, supported by Bridson, to excuse Young, from the meeting.
 
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
 
  1. Approval of the Minutes and Findings of Fact
 
Motion by Commissioner Kape, supported by Commissioner Fox, to approve the Minutes of July 14, 2015      
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
  1. Approval of the Agenda
 
Motion by Commissioner Pemberton, supported by Commissioner Bridson,                            to approve the agenda for the July 28, 2015 meeting.
 
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
 
  1. Acknowledge visitors wishing to speak to non-agenda items.
 
There was no public comment.
 
  1. Old Business
 
There was no Old Business
 
 
 
  1. Public Hearing
 
Case # 22-15 –   Misar Motors LLC – Special Land Use and Site Plan For a An Indoor Vehicle Sales in the Industrial Zone – Located at 4525 50th Street SE
 
Pung stated the request is for special land use and site plan review for indoor vehicle sales in an industrial district. Pung stated the applicant is requesting to use 1,250 square feet of an existing 21,726 square foot building for indoor vehicle sales. Pung stated the primary use of the property is a motor freight terminal, which will continue to be the primary use of the property. Pung stated the applicant is looking at an accessory use for the ability to sell either a car or brokerage the sale of semi-tractor/trailers as part of their business.
 
Pung stated there were no issues identified at the work session. The use is consistent with the zoning, Master Plan, and the special land use criteria.
 
Pung stated he is recommending conditional approval of the Special Land Use Indoor Vehicle Sales with conditions 1-9 and basis points 1-4 and conditional approval of the Site Plan for Indoor Vehicle Sales in and Industrial Zone with conditions 1-5 and basis points 1-5 as described in his memo.
 
Holtrop opened the public hearing.
 
There was no public comment.
 
Motion by VanderHoff, supported by Pemberton, to close the public hearing.
 
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
 
The commissioners offered no additional comments and were fine with the request.
 
Motion by Benoit supported by Fox, to grant conditional approval of the Special Land Use Indoor Vehicle Sales as described in Case 22-15. Approval is conditioned on conditions 1-9 and basis points 1-4 as described in Pung’s memo dated 7/17/15.
 
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent –
 
Motion by Benoit, supported by Fox, to grant conditional approval of the Site Plan received June 9, 2015 as described in Case 22-15. Approval is conditioned on conditions 1-5 and basis points 1-5 as described in Pung’s memo dated 7/17/15.
 
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
Case # 23-15 – The Pantry – Special Land Use and Site Plan Review for a Child Day Care Center – Located at 5308 Division Ave SE (The Applicant Has Requested Tabling)
 
Case # 24-15 – The Pantry Special Land Use and Site Plan Review for an Assembly Building– Located at 5308 Division Ave SE ( The Applicant Has Requested Tabling)
 
            Holtrop opened the public hearing.
 
            There was no public comment.
 
Motion by VanderHoff, supported by Pemberton, to table the public hearing to the August 11, 2015 meeting.
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
  1. Work Session
 
Case # 25-15 – FedCom Credit Union- Special Land Use and Site Plan Review for a Freestanding Financial Institution with a drive through Located at 4429 Breton Ave SE 
 
Pung stated the request is for special land use and site plan review for a financial institution with a drive-thru facility located at the northwest corner of Breton Avenue and Countywood drive (the former 7 eleven). Pung stated the site was developed in 1985 for a 7 eleven convenience store. The site is accessed off of Countrywood Drive, there is no direct access on to Breton Avenue.
 
Pung stated some of the issue identified are: the zoning ordinance would require a 50 foot building setback from any adjacent right-of-way or property line. Currently it is setback about 46.9 feet from the south property line, 46.7 from the north and 18.1 from the west property line. The applicant is aware that they will need variances for the setback and have made application to appear in front of the Zoning Board of Appeals on August 17.
 
Pung stated we’ve had similar circumstances when utilizing existing buildings and haven’t been able to meet the setback requirements (Panera Bread) and they have not had any issues with regard to stacking problems or concerns from the adjacent property owners.
 
Pung stated directly to the north there is an existing bank and their drive-thru is within a few feet of the south property line. Pung stated the reason for that is prior to 2002 when staff amended the zoning ordinance, there was no requirement for a 50 foot setback for drive-thru facilities for financial institutions. Pung stated when the zoning ordinance was updated in 2002 staff took the setback requirements for drive-thru facilities for restaurants and it was applied to all drive-thru facilities with some modifications.
 
Pung stated another issue is with the design and the drive-thru on the west side of the building. There is no adequate space to provide for a bypass lane; if you have up to 8 cars stacked there it could be a long wait. Pung stated one of the options we are looking at is taking the drive-thru and moving it to the northwest corner of the building that reduces the maximum stacking. It is still within what we would require by ordinance. If someone was coming up to use the drive-thru they would be able to see the approximate number of vehicles and at that point they can decide whether they want to get in line or park and go inside. This will be one way to address any stacking issues and people getting stuck in line for a long time.
 
Pung stated another issue the zoning ordinance doesn’t allow is for the dumpster to be located in the front yard. Staff met with the applicant and looked at different options. If they did want to retain a dumpster, they have the ability to relocate it the rear (north side of the building). But another option they are looking at is they really don’t generate a lot of refuse; their current facility they have a larger dumpster and it is only picked up once a month. One of their options is to have a residential style rollout dumpster where they can roll it out in the morning for pick up and then roll it back in. Therefore, they will not have to worry about the issue of trying to relocate a dumpster elsewhere on the site.
 
VanderHoff stated he doesn’t have any questions, seems like a reasonable use of the property and gets a vacant building filled.
 
Fox questioned the stacking. Brad Reimer, Timberland, building contractor on the project stated they will put signage up to make people aware of the situation. These partners are members of the bank so they will get used to what is happening. It doesn’t negatively affect the interior layout of the building.
 
Benoit questioned if there is an ordinance requirement for a dumpster enclosure. Benoit questioned if this will be a condition of the special land use. Pung stated with a revised site plan they can take off the dumpster enclosure and make a note of how they are going to handle the trash.  Benoit questioned if the detention basin for the neighboring property will be an issue for the site plan. Pung stated it is on the neighboring property and the applicant is not paving up to the property line and they are showing a small retaining wall. Riemer stated they will curb that so that the water coming in to that location would flow down into their current drainage system.
 
Pemberton questioned if there were any issues in the existing building that will create any problems. Riemer stated not what they can see but it will certainly need a substantial amount of work coming from a 7 eleven it will need a lot of cosmetic work in the interior, a total gut.
 
Kape questioned the dumpster getting moved. Pung stated they are moving it to the north side so that would be their rear yard. The ordinance states it can’t be in the front yard and their front yard is off Countrywood Drive.
 
Jones questioned if they have experience with drive-thrus at the other locations. Reimer stated the current location on 44th Street does not have a drive-thru. They added a drive-thru lane at their other location in Jenison; and their corporate office/branch office is on Ann Street and that has a single lane and that stacks into a parking lot and immediately falls right on to Ann Street and Monroe, but it is working for them.
 
Jones questioned the width of the drive-thru, she stated it looks very narrow. She questioned what their snow storage plan will be. Reimer stated it is called for a 10 foot lane a lot of banks are down to 8 ½ to 9 foot lanes and those are tight. He stated their drive-thru will have more room than what you typically see for a drive-thru they don’t feel they will have that issue with that lane.
 
Jones questioned if their clients have concerns with not having a bailout opportunity and if they thought moving the drive-thru to the north end will be enough for people to decide whether or not they want to stay. Riemer stated he thinks it will be fine. He stated maybe the first time customers may get locked in, but after people get a feel and see that the edge of the drive-thru is on the northwest corner, they will have the opportunity to decide if they want to make an immediate right into the parking spaces. Riemer stated the credit union has a small amount of traffic they don’t expect to have a lot of people.
 
Riemer stated FedCom also has the option if this request falls through to go into the building directly behind their current facility where Family Fare is located there was an addition to the mall that is about 10 years old. There is a vacant spot that used to be a video store they have an option to go there. He stated that has already been approved with the City of Grand Rapids for a drive-thru, but they would like to purchase a building.
 
Holtrop stated he thinks the lane moved back with 30 cars a day should be fine. Holtrop asked if the building allowed putting the drive-thru on the north side of the building. Riemer stated they looked at that, but their biggest concern is as you get to the west the turn becomes very tight. Riemer stated they looked at different options and if they were to start stacking then they are stacking into the parking areas. Riemer stated they looked into it, but it just wasn’t feasible because it puts everybody stacking into parking areas.
 
Holrtop questioned the landscape requirements. Pung stated it currently doesn’t conform to our ordinance, they have been looking at adding additional landscaping. Pung stated it may not bring it all the way into conformance but it will bring them closer and spruce it up.
 
Riemer stated they are the oldest credit union in the state of Michigan and in the last five years Fedcom has started changing their image and upgrading their logo and becoming more current. They take a lot of pride in their buildings and their grounds.
 
  1. New Business
 
Motion by VanderHoff, supported by Benoit, to set public hearing date of August 25, 2015, for:  Case #26-15 – 3663 Broadmoor – Special Land Use and Site Plan Review for a Major Vehicle Repairs Establishment Located at 3663 Broadmoor Ave SE; Case #27-15 – 3663 Broadmoor – Special Land Use and Site Plan Review for Indoor Vehicle Sales Located at 3663 Broadmoor Ave SE
 
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
  1. Other Business
 
  1. Commissioners’ Comments
 
Kape encouraged the commissioners to vote in next Tuesday’s primaries. He stated the church has a lot of signs promoting community event. Schweitzer stated we will be in touch with the church tomorrow. Schweitzer stated if it is on private property we advise getting permission from the property owner but if it’s on private property it comes under non-commercial speech. If it is in the public ROW it has to be removed.
 
Bridson stated she thinks FedCom would be a great addition and hopes that it will have a positive impact for Biggby.
 
Benoit stated he has attended the Farmers Market the past few weekends and has gotten some really good things.
 
Fox stated Vote Aug 4.
 
VanderHoff stated 7 eleven would have been a better location for Biggby rather than where they are currently located.
 
  1. Staff’s Comments
 
Golder stated Biggby is going to go with a larger portion of the freestanding signs.
 
  1. Adjournment  
 
Motion by Commissioner VanderHoff, supported by Commissioner Pemberton,                            to adjourn the meeting.
  • Motion Carried (8-0) –
  • Young absent -
 
Meeting adjourned at 8:00p.m.
 
                                                            Respectfully submitted,
 
                                                            Ed Kape, Secretary