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RIVERDALE PLANNING COMMISSION
MEETING MINUTES

January 13, 2004

Minutes of the Regular Meeting of the Riverdale Planning Commission held Tuesday, January 13, 2004 at 6:30 p.m. at the Riverdale Civic Center.

Members Present:
Greg Limburg, Chair
Brent Coleman
Kathy Eskelsen
Don Farr
Don Hunt
Allen Miller
Kathy Tanner

Others Present:
Randy Daily, Community Development Administrator
Lieutenant Dave Hansen, Public Safety
Randy Koger, Fire Marshal
Michelle Douglas, Planning Commission Secretary

Rebecca Higgs Stephanie Wyjack Shauna Austin
Steve Austin Tom Carpenter Dave Lesley
Mark Shields

Commissioner Limburg called the meeting to order and welcomed all those in attendance. He acknowledged that all members were in attendance; in addition, he acknowledged the attendance of Staff that was present, which were Mr. Daily, Lieutenant Hansen and Fire Marshal Koger.

Appointment of Chair and Vice Chair

Motion Commissioner Tanner moved to nominated Greg Limburg as the Planning Commission Chair and Don Farr as the Planning Commission Vice Chair. Commissioner Eskelsen seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Welcome of new Planning Commission Members

Chair Limburg welcomed new Planning Commission members Commissioner Don Hunt and Commissioner Allen Miller.

Consideration of Minutes

Motion Commissioner Tanner moved to approve the minutes of the preplanning work session of December 9, 2003 as proposed; and for approval of the regular meeting of December 9, 2003 as proposed; and to waive the reading. Commissioner Eskelsen seconded the motion; the motion passed unanimously.

Conditional Use Permit / Home Occupation Application

Rebecca Higgs – Sister’s Corner

Ms. Rebecca Higgs was present at the meeting to discuss her conditional use application for a home occupation business license. Ms. Higgs lives in an A-1 zone, and she owns the home.

Ms. Higgs informed the Commission she would like to operate a business for phone card vending machines. She went on to explain that the vending machines are not located in her home; she is utilizing the home for an office, will have parts on site to fix the vending machines and have phone cards stored at the home.

Commissioner Tanner made reference to Ms. Higgs’ other home occupation business. Ms. Higgs noted that she teaches piano lessons, and she stated that she would not exceed an area greater than 25 percent for both home occupations.

Motion Commissioner Tanner moved to grant the conditional use permit for a home occupation located at 5758 South 1150 West for Rebecca Higgs, Sister’s Corner, as requested. Commissioner Coleman seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Craig & Stephanie Wyjack – The Scarlet Thread, Inc.

Ms. Stephanie Wyjack was present at the meeting to discuss her conditional use application for a home occupation business license. Mrs. Wyjack lives in an R-1-10 zone, and she owns the home.

Mrs. Wyjack informed the Commission that she would like to perform custom window treatment, bedding and design services. She explained that she would purchase materials as needed; she does not maintain an inventory. She went on to explain that she utilizes a bedroom that she works in and she utilizes a sewing machine and a serger.

Motion Commissioner Coleman moved to grant the conditional use permit for a home occupation located at 5116 South 1150 West for Stephanie Wyjack, The Scarlet Thread, Inc., as requested. Commissioner Eskelsen seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Conceptual Discussion for Senior Facility located at 4433 South 900 West in a Low-Impact Transition Zone

Mr. Daily explained the property in question is the property located at 4433 South 900 West, which is 2.37 acres and zoned low-impact transition. He went on to explain that the City purchased the property with the intent to build a 10,000 to 12,000 square foot, two-story senior center with approximately 36 housing units. He explained the facility would be City owned and operated, and he clarified that it would be a senior center with housing not an assisted living facility.

Mr. Daily informed the Commission that under the current zone, all zoning requirements would be met, and the City will meet all site standards and landscaping requirements. He referred to 10-13D-3: Planned Uses, which states:

All uses in the low-impact transition overlay zone shall be planned uses. The approval of planned uses shall be reviewed and approved by the planning commission prior to issuance of a business license. Planned uses shall include, but are not limited to, the following: professional office; real estate office, insurance office; elderly care facilities and high-tech repair.

Mr. Daily noted that the discussion this evening is a conceptual discussion, and the City is requesting approval to move forward toward a preliminary plan. It was inquired if there would be a public hearing in regards to the proposed plan. Mr. Daily indicated that a public hearing was not required; however, since it is a planned zone, the Planning Commission could set a public hearing if they feel a public hearing is necessary. Chair Limburg noted that Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter, the adjoining property owners to the west, have been vocal about development of the property in the past; and he believes a public hearing would be appropriate.

Mr. Daily stated that he believes the senior center will take care of the situation with all the adjoining property owners because of the regulations and the facility will be owned and operated by the City. Chair Limburg indicated that he does not want the adjoining property owners to be surprised, and he knows the City is concerned with being a good neighbor as well.

Mr. Daily pointed out that the property has had its share of interested parties; and the City wants the least amount of impact on the area, and this is less of an impact and fits well in the surrounding area. He indicated that he thought a noticed informational meeting with public comments during the preliminary site plan would be more appropriate than a public hearing.

Commissioner Tanner inquired if the housing units would have interior or exterior access. Mr. Daily explained that the housing units are being designed based on a secured facility and peace of mind of the residences; therefore, the housing units will have an interior access. It was questioned if there would be on-site parking for residents. Mr. Daily noted that based on the ordinance, the parking ratio is one space per 500 square feet.

It was inquired how the parking would work for handicap accessibility; do the ratios go up? Mr. Daily indicated that is being evaluated. Mr. Daily explained the housing units would be handicap accessible and have the ability to be changed for handicap accessibility.

Commissioner Hunt noted that Mr. Daily said the facility “could” never be sold. He clarified that the facility “could” never or “would” never be sold. Mr. Daily explained that based on the RDA (Riverdale City Redevelopment Agency) funding, the facility has to be owned by the RDA.

Discussion followed regarding landscaping requirements. Mr. Daily indicated that therequired landscaping buffer is a 20-foot landscaped berm adjacent to any residential area but this being a residential use, the berm requirement does not apply. In addition a screened walled area, which the Planning Commission has the authority to waive since this is a residential use, but the City will probably want the screening. Chair Limburg and Commissioner Farr agreed that screening would be appropriate.

Discussion regarding the zoning of the property located at approximately 790 West 4450 South

Ms. Shauna Austin was present at the meeting to discussing the zoning of the property located at approximately 790 West 4450 South. Ms. Austin indicated that Mrs. Mitchell is wondering what she can do with the property since the property is split between the R-2 and C-3 zone, and she would like to get this resolved so the property is all one zoning.

Chair Limburg informed Ms. Austin that the City’s Land Use Master Plan designates the property as residential; and if she would like to proceed with rezoning the property, she would need to have a rezoning hearing. He went on to say it is harder for the Commissioner to say how they feel unless the petitioner knows what they want to do with the property. Ms. Austin informed the Commission that Mrs. Mitchell wants to sell the property, and she is leaning toward a commercial designation.

Mr. Daily stated there is the marketability of the property, and that is the value, which would increase with a commercial zone. He went on to explain that the property to the east is commercial and that will not change. Mr. Daily suggested that they do a rezone request and go through the process. He indicated that he is not sure how the Planning Commission will feel about rezoning the property to commercial without knowing what the petitioner wants. He reiterated that the General Plan recommends residential. He inquired if the Planning Commission believes the City needs to re-evaluate the area and amend the General Plan.

Chair Limburg noted that he is concerned with spot zoning the area. Mr. Daily stated that he does not see it as spot zoning. There is commercial property to the east, and he inquired what kind of residential development the Planning Commission believes would happen on the property in question. Chair Limburg pointed out that at one time they discussed the concept of a PRUD in the area; he question if that has gone by the wayside. Mr. Daily indicated that the concept would have to be sold to all of the property owners in the area and marketed that way.

It was pointed out that 4400 South would never be anything except residential. It was questioned if the properties that front 4450 South could be some type of transition zone that would not impact the residential properties on 4400 South. Commissioner Tanner inquired if the CP (planned commercial) zone would work. It was thought that the zoning designation that was selected would have to work well with both the residential and commercial zone.

Chair Limburg inquired if Ms. Austin spoke to any of the other property owners in the area. Ms. Austin indicated that she had not. Chair Limburg indicated that he could see Mrs. Mitchell’s point; on the same token, he noted that he did not want to be doing the same thing with every property owner in the area at different times.

It was suggested that Staff talk to every property owner in the area, and find out how they feel about their property’s zoning designation. Ms. Austin indicated that she did not mind waiting while Staff contacted the surrounding property owners.

Conceptual Discussion for the expansion of the Stoney Brook Assisted Living Facility located at 4390 South 700 West

Mr. Dave Lesley was present at the meeting to discuss the proposed expansion of the Stoney Brook Assisted Living Facility located at 4390 South 700 West. Mr. Lesley explained he would like to expand the facility to the corner of 4400 South and 700 West. The property on the corner is currently R-2, and in order to expand the facility, the property would have to be rezoned to R-5.

Chair Limburg informed Mr. Lesley that the City is considering a roundabout on the corner of 4400 South and 700 West. He noted at this time it is not known if the roundabout would affect his property, and the City would not want to buy developed property, and the Planning Commission would need a proposed site plan. Mr. Lesley indicated that he has not laid out the proposed plan as of yet; however, the east fence would continue on to 4400 South and he would create another wing. He explained that it would be an addition for an Alzheimer wing not a separate building. Mr. Daily added that it would change the designation of the building once the building surpasses 16 units. Mr. Daily went on to explain that once Mr. Lesley proceeded with the rezone request, he would proceed with the site plan.

Discussion followed regarding building/fire code. Fire Marshal Koger indicated that the occupancy would be an I1 or an I2 instead of R, which is an institutional use instead of a residential use because there would be over 16 units, and the State Fire Marshal would have jurisdiction over the facility. He went on to say he would have to look at the fire code for further information.

Mr. Daily inquired if the Planning Commission would be willing to entertain a rezone request to rezone the property in question from R-2 to R-5. Commissioner Tanner inquired if the use would fit into an R-5 zone. Mr. Daily explained the proposed use would fit into an R-5 zone because it is an expansion of Mr. Lesley’s assisted living facility. He went on to explain the state looks at the different levels of care; the City only looks at it as an assisted living facility.

Mr. Lesley informed the Commission that there wouldn’t be any difference in the continuity of the proposed addition; the addition will be the same as the existing building. He went on to say that with the original facility, parking was an issue, and he knows what he has to do to comply. He inquired if the Commission has a preference of which side the parking is on. Chair Limburg noted that it might not be a bad idea to have some type of drive through; in addition, Mr. Lesley might need more parking since the addition is going to be an Alzheimer unit. Mr. Lesley explained that he would be required to have more staff for an Alzheimer unit.

Mr. Daily indicated that the assisted care facility is a conditional use, and Mr. Lesley would have to request a rezone. He stated that the bottom line at this point is would the Planning Commission recommend that Mr. Lesley move forward with a rezone request. The Planning Commission was in favor of Mr. Lesley moving forward with the proposed addition and rezone request.

Conceptual Discussion for the residential subdivision of property located at approximately 3800 South 1250 West (South Parker Drive)

Mr. Mark Shields was present at the meeting to discuss the residential subdivision of property located at approximately 3800 South 1250 West (South Parker Drive). The proposed subdivision is currently in an A-1 zone and the proposed zoning is an R-1-10 zone. Mr. Shields presented the Commission with a small lot subdivision of five lots, and the frontages and lot sizes are larger than what is required of an R-1-10 zone.

Commissioner Limburg noted that the current zoning is A-1, and Mr. Shields would need to proceed with a rezone request prior to subdividing the property, and the Commission would probably prefer to see the homes congruent with what exists in the area now. Commissioner Farr commented that he didn’t think Mr. Shields would want to build large homes in the area because the homes would be hard to sell on the frontage road. Mr. Shields indicated that he is willing to build something that looks good and to work with the City.

Discussion followed regarding city improvements. It was noted that the homes to the north are improved with sidewalk; however, the homes to the south are not; they only have an asphalt path. Mr. Daily informed Mr. Shields that he would have to improve the lots with sidewalk.

Discussion regarding the City’s General Plan, Specifically Area Eight

Mr. Daily indicated that when the petitioner for the Ruby River Plaza came before the City to rezone their area, it was inquired what the City would want to do with the rest of the property in the area designated residential overlay. He questioned if the Commission wanted to reevaluate the area or did they want a different land use designation.

Commissioner Tanner indicated that she believes the older homes on 500 West will eventually go away and only a planned commercial zone would makes sense. It was pointed out that the hillside is protected but it would be advantageous to incorporate a “no build area” along the north side.

Mr. Daily noted that the question is, are there areas in the General Plan that need to be amended. It was pointed out that the Area Seven would need to be amended to accommodate Mr. Lesley, and Area Seven would need to be amended if the properties were rezoned that were discussed earlier in the evening (Mitchell property and surrounding properties). Mr. Daily indicated that the Herridge Group is conducting a study of the 1500 West/Cozy Dale area and that area would need to be considered if it were rezoned. It was inquired what it would be rezoned to. Mr. Daily indicated that it all comes down to what is acceptable to the City and the whole purpose of the study is to determine what the best use of the property is. He went on to explain that all of the property owners are on board with the recommendation and the City is dealing with it through a zoning process.

Mr. Daily explained that in order to make a recommendation to the City Council regarding the General Plan, the Planning Commission is required to hold a public hearing. It was thought that it would be best to get all of the proposed amendments together prior to moving forward.

Chair Limburg inquired about the Judkins/Watkins property. Mr. Daily informed the Commission that the property (corner of 700 West and 4400 South) was discussed during the City Council’s strategic planning session, and there are Council members that believe it should be left as residential and there are Council members that believe it would be okay to rezone it.

It was inquired if it could be rezoned with the condition that only the daycare utilize the property and make the daycare put in additional parking. Mr. Daily indication that there is fire code issues with utilizing the house for a commercial daycare. He stated that the property owner would have to make a decision regarding the property. The dwelling may have to be razed and the parcel utilized for parking or the structure would have to be brought up to fire and building code. Mr. Daily added that the structure does not meet parking or setback requirements for a commercial site.

Discretionary Business

Mr. Daily indicated that the Planning Commission needs a representative for design review committee, which is usually the Chair; in addition, the Transportation Committee needs a representative from the Planning Commission that too is usually the Chair. Chair Limburg stated that he would be able to serve on both those committees.

Commissioner Coleman inquired why the one white wall was left on Merrill’s building. Mr. Daily explained it was left because the building was supposed to be a remodel. He went on to say he did not think the Planning Commission was wrong in approving the site; the fact is when the contractor got into remolding the building, the building was not sufficient and it did not meet building code.

Mr. Daily inquired if their attitude was changing pertaining toward landscaping or development and/or should the percentages be eased. Chair Limburg indicated that he did not think it was necessarily the percentages in regards to landscaping but what is put into the landscaping. Mr. Daily explained that the ratios still impact the site no matter what they are; they still take away from the overall area. Mr. Daily noted that with the Merrill site, they would have had to say the building is too big, make it fit; and in doing that, they would still have the old building. We held ourselves to a higher standard and it is working for us.

With no further business to come before the Commission at this time, Commissioner Eskelsen moved to adjourn the meeting. Commissioner Coleman seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. The meeting adjourned at approximately 8:00 p.m.

Attest: Approved: February 10, 2004

______________________________ ______________________________

Michelle Douglas Greg Limburg

Planning Commission Secretary Chair


RIVERDALE CITY
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