MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS,
WHICH TOOK PLACE
AT , IN COUNCIL CHAMBERS, CITY HALL,
1. ROLL CALL
PRESENT: Board Members - Green, Higgins, Holthof, Lichtenwald, and
ABSENT: Board Members – Steele
OTHERS PRESENT: Daryl Poprave, Deputy Director of Planning; Cheri King, Community Development Specialist and 2 others.
2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
It was moved
by Higgins and supported by Green to approve the minutes of the
The Chairman explained the public hearing procedures and how the Board decides if the variance request is approved based on the five ordinance criteria.
3. PUBLIC HEARINGS
No. 07-10 – David Keyser of Dow, Howell, Gilmore and Associates on behalf of Thomas
Feige, Jr. for an area/dimension variance to allow the construction of a new
attached garage with a gross floor area of 913 square feet at
Mr. Poprave showed an aerial photograph of
the subject property. It is on the south
Mr. Keyser, of Dow, Howell, Gilmore and
Holthof and Lichtenwald asked the petitioner to explain how this is not self-created. Mr. Feige stated you cannot store a lawn mower or snow blower in a mud room. If they cannot have the larger garage, they will enlarge the mud room in the house so the look on the exterior is the same. Mr. Feige stated the house was run down and they are renovating it to look better. He stated the neighbors are all in favor of their renovations.
Mr. Poprave stated the Midland Homebuilder’s Association has filed some zoning text amendments; include the changing of this ordinance to be able to build houses with larger garages. This will be brought to the Planning Commission for consideration. The previous zoning ordinance did not have a size limit for attached garages, but did state 800 sq. ft. was the maximum size for a detached garage.
No one spoke either in favor of or in opposition to this request.
Hearing no further public comments, the Chairman closed the public hearing and asked the Board for findings of fact on the petition.
Findings of Fact:
1. The zoning is RA-1.
2. There are several 3-car garages in the area.
3. This addition is on a large lot that allows adequate room for this addition that meets all of the required setbacks.
4. It is the desire of the petitioner to preserve the play house in the rear of the property that has been there since 1940 or 1941.
5. There was one telephone call in favor of the request.
6. There was one letter received in favor of the request.
7. The house was built in 1941 and had a 2-car garage at that time.
It is moved by Holthof supported by
Pnacek to approve Petition No. 07-10 based on the findings of fact to allow the
construction of a new attached garage with a gross floor area of 913 square
Holthof stated it does lend itself to look like a 3-car garage from the exterior. It is just a matter of moving the one wall. The thought behind not having such a large garage is to make sure the petitioner does not over-build his lot. This house already meets all the setbacks. It is a large enough lot that there is plenty of room for the larger garage. He stated that strict compliance with the zoning ordinance would be unnecessarily burdensome as he can meet all the setbacks on the property. The variance is not excessive and it would allow them extra storage space that they wish to have. If this section of our zoning code did not exist, we would not be here tonight.
Pnacek concurs with Holthof. He feels the 800 sq. ft. minimum needs to be looked at in the zoning ordinance.
Green stated that the integrity of the allowable setbacks of the zoning ordinance will be maintained. This will not cause an encroachment into any of the setback areas.
Higgins stated it should be noted that what the petitioner wants to use the property for is of no consequence to the Board. The only concern the Board has is that it meet the zoning ordinance. The location of the property is also of no concern to the Board. Higgins states does agree with Holthof, however, the Board does not consider what goes inside garages as information used in granting a variance. Also, the Board does not consider where the house is located as a reason to grant a variance. He can meet all of the criteria.
Lichtenwald stated he feels it would do substantial justice to the petitioner and to the neighborhood. However, the petitioner did submit a plan that he can comply with the zoning ordinance. He does not feel the criteria A and criteria E are met. He feels it is self-created and that it is not unnecessarily burdensome, as a plan for an 800 sq. ft. garage was submitted in order to get the building permit.
Voting on the motion:
The motion to approve the Petition 07-10 was approved 3-2.
4. PUBLIC COMMENTS (not related to items on the agenda)
5. OLD BUSINESS
6. NEW BUSINESS
a. The 2008 Meeting Schedule was presented and the Board unanimously approved to continue meeting on the third Tuesday of the month at
b. The 2007 MAP Conference is coming up. Please let staff know if you would be interested in attending.
revisions/Master Plan update is coming to a close. We have had it open for public review for 90
days and only received four comments.
The Master Plan public hearing is scheduled for
7. DECISION SHEET SIGNATURES
Hearing no further business, the Chairman adjourned the meeting at
Deputy Planning Director