MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE MIDLAND CITY PLANNING COMMISSION

WHICH TOOK PLACE ON TUESDAY,

JUNE 12, 2012, 7:00 P.M.,

COUNCIL CHAMBERS, CITY HALL, MIDLAND, MICHIGAN

 

1.   Roll Call

PRESENT:   Hannah, Heying, McLaughlin, Mead, Pnacek, Stewart, Tanzini and Young

ABSENT:      Senesac

OTHERS PRESENT:   Brad Kaye, Director of Planning and Community Development, Cheri King, Community Development Specialist, Cindy Winland, Contract Planner, Lori Morgan, Planning Intern, and 9 others.

 

2.   Approval of Minutes

Moved by Stewart, seconded by Hanna, to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of May 22, 2012.  Motion passed unanimously. 

3.   Public Hearings

     

      a.   Site Plan No. 313 – initiated by Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr & Huber, Inc. on behalf of VC Energy, LLC for site plan review and approval for a 150,100 square foot thermal island building and fuel storage barn, located at 602 South Waldo Avenue on 31.42 acres. 

 

            Brad Kaye introduced Lori Morgan, Planning Intern, who will present the public hearing this evening.  The property is located on 31.42 acres at 602 S. Waldo Avenue.  The site is zoned Industrial B, which permits the use proposed by right subject to site plan review.  The site is located on South Waldo Avenue, just to the east of the Dow Corning Plant.  It is surrounded by Industrial zoned properties so it will not interfere with any incompatible uses.  The site is located within a wetland area but the development will be located to minimize the impact on the wetlands areas. 

 

            The site plan shows a proposed thermal island and separate fuel storage barn.  Two separated entrances to the site are proposed which is in compliance with ordinance standards.  Employee parking will be at the northeast section of the site and will be the only on-site pedestrian activity.  The outbuildings shown are the fuel storage barn and the pump house. 

 

            A stormwater management plan has been submitted for review by the City’s Engineering Department.  Revisions have been made to the photometric plan to comply with Zoning Ordinance requirements.  Updates to the current water and sewer service plans will be required to provide for a looped and pressurized water system.  A landscaping plan or computation is recommended by staff.  A storm water and sedimentation plan is also required.  Staff recommendation is for approval with contingencies.  No public comments have been received by the Planning Department. 

 

            Kerri Miller of Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr & Huber, Inc. introduced the project and provided an overview.  David Peeper of VC Energy LLC stated they acquired this property in December and negotiated the purchase of the property with Dow Corning.  They have checked the air quality as well as the wetlands areas.  The project is for a 31 acre site at 602 S. Waldo Avenue.  The property is being leased from Dow Corning.  The facility will be capable of generating 35 MW of renewable energy (electricity and low pressure steam).  This has the potential to generate over 3000 pounds of steam per hour.  This is a renewable energy project.  They have a gasification process.  They do not “burn” anything.  It is one big steam turbine.  There will be truck traffic of about 50 vehicles per day.  There is another company that has proposed to put a sawmill on the adjacent property.  They do have an approved wetlands mitigation plan and an approved air quality permit. 

 

            Kerri Miller showed some existing site photos.  There is quite a tree buffer between the site and Waldo Avenue.  The pattern for trucks to enter the site is through the north entrance.  The DEQ permit was approved with the mitigation of 2.4 acres.  They are managing all of the storm water on site and will  route their drainage into the wetland areas to maintain their integrity. 

 

            David Peeper stated this is the first plant of this scale that they have done.  They have a pilot facility that is running now in Howard City.  The storage of biomass will all be indoors and conveyed underground into the plant. 

 

            Tony Kuipers stated the loudest thing will be fans with decibel ratings in the 70’s, although it will not be above 60 decibels at the property lines.  The primary source of the biomass will be chipped wood, ideally coming from within a 125 mile radius.  They hope to break ground August 1st,begin delivering test power in October, 2013, and be up to full power by December, 2013.  The plant will employ approximately 35 hourly people plus a management staff of about eight. 

 

            The detention pond will contain some water in the bottom at all times, with a slope not to exceed 1:6, as required by the city’s ordinance. 

 

            No one spoke either in favor or in opposition to this petition.

 

            Public hearing was closed. 

4.   Old Business

 

      a.   Site Plan No. 310 – initiated by Central Michigan Surveying & Development Company on behalf of P & P Opportunities, LLC for site plan review and approval of Olive Garden Restaurant and retail, located at 6803 Eastman Avenue.  

 

            Brad Kaye stated this use is by right, subject to site Plan Review.  The petitioners are P & P Opportunities LLC, located at 6801 Eastman Avenue.  The site is 4.41 acres.  The property is zoned Regional Commercial.  The proposed development is for a 7,500 sq. ft. Olive Garden Restaurant, a future development site, and a drive through use.  Everything internal to the site has remained unchanged since the application was last presented to the Planning Commission.  Cross-site access and adjacent property owner authorization prevented approval at that time. 

 

            The submitted plan now includes all required detail except for lighting and landscaping.  A cross-site access agreement has been offered by the applicant.  Written authorization from Midland Lodging LLC to use Saylor Drive is no longer required (#3) as their lands have been removed from the site pan application.  Written authorization from adjacent property owners for cross site access is no longer required (#5) due to the open access agreement now offered by the applicant.  Removal and restoration of the Saylor Drive curb cut to Eastman Avenue is required.  All other previously recommended contingencies remain valid. 

 

There were two public hearings held on April 24, 2012 and May 8, 2012.  The Planning Commission will make their recommendation on June 12, 2012.  City Council can have this for consideration on June 25, 2012.  Staff recommendation is that the application is incomplete at this time.  One public comment was received.  

     

            Motion by Hanna, seconded by Heying, to recommend to City Council the approval of Site Plan No. 310 initiated by Central Michigan Surveying & Development Company on behalf of P & P Opportunities, LLC for site plan review and approval of Olive Garden Restaurant and retail, located at 6803 Eastman Avenue with the following contingencies:

 

1.         All outstanding information items required under Article 27, Site Plan Review, must be submitted.    

2.         Elevations of the drive-through building addition must be provided.

3.         Written approval of the Fair Board authorizing site access to the fairgrounds road must be provided.

4.         Cross-site access easements shall be provided in a manner and form acceptable to the City Attorney.

5.         Site lighting shall comply with the standards of Section 3.12 of the Zoning

            Ordinance.

6.         Site landscaping shall comply with the standards of Article 6 of the Zoning

            Ordinance.

7.         Dumpster enclosures shall comply with the standards of Section 3.15 of the Zoning Ordinance.

8.         A traffic light agreement between the applicant and the City of Midland shall be entered into.  Such agreement shall include the requirement to physically remove the existing curb cut at the end of Saylor Drive, construct new curb and sidewalk as necessary and restore the outlawn.

9.         Final utility sizing and location shall be approved by the City’s Engineering,         Water and Wastewater Departments.

10.       Final soil erosion and sedimentation control plans shall be approved by the City’s Building Department.

11.       Administrative site plan approval shall be granted to the future development area only if such development complies with Section 27.02.C of the Zoning Ordinance. 

 

            Vote:

            YEAS:            Hanna, Heying, McLaughlin, Mead, Pnacek, Stewart, Tanzini and Young

            NAYS:            None

            ABSENT:       Senesac

 

      b.   Master Plan – Chapters 3 (Natural Resources Inventory) and Chapter 5 (Future Land Use)

 

            To date we have seen the introduction, demographics, existing land use, a draft of future land use, the community facilities plan, and performance measures.  What we have left are Chapters 3 and 5, and the local economy and future trends, and transportation.

 

            There are not many changes in Chapter 3.  In the Natural Resources Inventory, we have added a little bit of text change.  Staff opted not to change the existing land cover.  However, there are updated maps that go along with this due to annexations over time. 

 

            Mr. Heying asked about page 3.6, environmental quality.  He wanted one section re-worded so that it did not sound like previous city officials had ignored environmental concerns when in fact the technology and current knowledge level were just not available at that time.

 

            Chapter 5, the Future Land Use Chapter, is a plan.  It does not mirror the zoning map.  The proposed changes are on the first page, to reflect the current city boundaries.  On page 5.3, there is a short discussion about goals and public hearings.  We have not reviewed these yet but that will be done in the review process.  On page 5.6, we discussed the densities.  Low density will allow six units per acre rather than only four.  Medium density will permit 10 dwelling units per acre instead of nine.  On page 5.11, principal uses, instead of 3.4% planned commercial, we now have 4.0% planned commercial.  On page 5.15, they discuss the 5 story office building, which had its public hearing at City Council yesterday.  

 

            Mrs. Hanna objected to the increases in density being proposed and to the area designated commercial on the north part of Waldo Road.  Ms. Winland explained that before this develops as commercial, the Planning Commission would have to see this annexed into the city, and then city zoning would have to be applied.  At this time, even with zoning, there is insufficient sewer or water in this area.  At this stage, the land use designation is just proposed.  Mr. Heying asked about the goals written on page 5.4.  These are goals that were established in prior years. 

 

            Staff hopes to distribute Sections 4 and 6 so the Planning Commission has a chance to review them prior to their next meeting. 

 

      Mrs. Hanna complimented Lori Morgan on her presentation.

 

5.  Public Comments (unrelated to items on the agenda)

 

      None

 

6.   New Business

 

      None

 

7.   Communications

 

      None

 

8.   Report of the Chairperson

 

      None

 

9.  Report of the Planning Director

 

     Trotter’s Point was approved last night by City Council.                

 

     Riverside Place will be getting all new carpeting throughout the facility. 

 


10. Items for Next Agenda – June 26, 2012

 

      a. Site Plan No. 313 – action

      b. DNO Signs and Standards

      b. DNO Cornices and Light Standards

 

11. Adjourn             

 

      Adjourned at 8:24 p.m.

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

C. Bradley Kaye, AICP

Director of Planning and Community Development

 

MINUTES ARE NOT FINAL UNTIL APPROVED BY THE PLANNING COMMISSION