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Planning Commission Agenda and Minutes
Thursday, May 12, 2016
The The regular meeting of the Planning Commission was called to order at 5:35 PM in the City Hall Council Chambers on the above date with the following members and staff in attendance:
Patrick Miranda, Chair
David McFadden, Vice Chair
Jim Huber, Planning Director
Kelly Akin, Principal Planner
Kevin McConnell, Deputy City Attorney
Eric Mitton, Senior Assistant City Attorney
Alex Georgevitch, City Engineer
Greg Kleinberg, Fire Marshal
Terri Rozzana, Recording Secretary
Sarah Sousa, Planner IV
Desmond McGeough, Planner III
Jared Pulver, Excused Absence
10. Roll Call
20. Consent Calendar/Written Communications.
20.1 LDP-16-012 / E-16-034 Final Orders of a request to create three lots on a 0.74 acre parcel, and an exception request for the elimination of sidewalk, curb, gutter and street paving improvements. The parcel is located south of the intersection of East Main Street, Fair Oaks Drive and White Oak Drive, within the SFR-4 (Single-Family Residential – 4 dwelling units per gross acre) zoning district. (Adderson Builders Inc., Applicant; Polaris Land Surveying, LLC, Agent)
20.2 PUD-05-025 Final Order of a request for a revision to Bella Vista Planned Unit Development to allow a six-foot cedar fence to be located adjacent to East McAndrews Road along Lots 11-17 of Phase 2, located between Palermo Street and East McAndrews Road. (Pahlisch Homes, Inc., Applicant/Agent)
Motion: Adopt the consent calendar as submitted.
Moved by: Vice Chair McFadden Seconded by: Commissioner Foley
Voice Vote: Motion passed, 7–0.
30.1. The minutes for April 28, 2016, were approved with the following change that on pages 15 and 16 the votes state 6-0. There were only five Commissioners present and should read 5-0 for agenda items 50.2 and 50.4.
40. Oral and Written Requests and Communications. None.
Eric Mitton, Assistant Senior Attorney, read the Quasi-Judicial Statement.
50. Public Hearings – Old Business
50.1 PUD-00-116 / CUP-04-109 / LDS-16-045 Consideration of a request for a revision to Stonegate Estates Planned Unit Development to 1) amend the exterior boundary of the PUD, 2) revise the Conditional Use Permit to allow riparian encroachments for a multi-use path, street, bridge, public storm water facilities, and utilities and 3) tentative plat review of Phases 2B, 2C, and 2D. The project is located on the east side of North Phoenix Road, north of Coal Mine Road. (Louie & Charles Mahar, Applicants; Richard Stevens & Associates, Clark Stevens, Agent)
Chair Miranda inquired whether any Commissioners have a conflict of interest or ex-parte communication they would like to disclose. None were disclosed.
Chair Miranda inquired whether anyone in attendance wishes to question the Commission as to conflicts of interest or ex-parte contacts. None were disclosed.
Sarah Sousa, Planner IV, stated that the applicant has requested that this item be continued to the Thursday, May 26, 2016, Planning Commission meeting. If there are members in the audience wishing to testify and cannot attend the May 26, 2016 Planning Commission, she can go through the entire staff report, otherwise, she will present her presentation at the May 26, 2016, Planning Commission meeting.
Chair Miranda inquired whether there were people in the audience that would like to testify regarding this application. There were none.
Motion: The Planning Commission approves the applicants request to continue this item to the May 26, 2016, Planning Commission meeting.
Moved by: Commissioner Mansfield Seconded by: Commissioner McKechnie
Voice Vote: Motion passed, 7-0.
50.2 CUP-16-022 / E-16-023 Consideration of a request for a Conditional Use Permit for the Kids Unlimited Public Charter School Master Campus Plan to allow for the expansion of existing facilities; including but not limited to 18,000 square foot multipurpose building, a two classroom modular building and outdoor athletic field. The Applicant has submitted an associated Exception Application requesting relief from street side setbacks, maximum lot coverage, and reduction of public right-of-way for Edwards Street and Austin Street. The subject site is located west of Riverside Avenue, south of Edward Street, east of Niantic Street and north of Austin Street. The campus is located in the SFR-10 (Single Family Residential -10 units per gross acre), MFR-20 (Multiple-Family Residential – 20 units per gross acre and C-C (Community Commercial) zoning districts and encompasses approximately 2.8 net acres. (Kids Unlimited of Oregon, Applicant; Scott Sinner Consulting, Inc., Agent)
Chair Miranda inquired whether any Commissioners have a conflict of interest or ex-parte communication they would like to disclose. Commissioner McKechnie disclosed that Scott Sinner, the agent for the applicant, is his neighbor, but that would not affect his decision.
Chair Miranda inquired whether anyone in attendance wishes to question the Commission as to conflicts of interest or ex-parte contacts. None were disclosed.
Desmond McGeough, Planner III, read the conditional use permit and exception criteria and gave a staff report.
Commissioner Mansfield stated that he is having difficulty with the two letters that were submitted; one from Mr. Lee and the other from James A. Dole, an attorney for the Lee’s. They seem to be inconsistent. Mr. Dole talks about the hardship that his clients property will have being near the improvement. Mr. Lee states that he is in favor of the project but hopes there will not be a street widening. Mr. McGeough reported that staff received the letter from the attorney first. Mr. McGeough has spoken with a local land use consultant that is an associate of Mr. Lee’s and after that discussion Mr. Lee may have had a different outlook on the application.
Commissioner Mansfield asked if the latter letter from Mr. Lee is what the Planning Commission should go by and ignore the attorney’s letter. Does that sound reasonable? Mr. McGeough stated that Mr. Lee is in the audience and would address Commissioner Mansfield’s question.
Commissioner McKechnie asked is it correct that the existing Kids Unlimited building is built right to the property line on Edwards and Riverside? Mr. McGeough reported that is correct.
Commissioner McKechnie stated that the alley is 16 feet wide and City Code would require it to be 20 feet wide. The applicant is requesting to have it remain at 16 feet as an exception. Is that correct? Mr. McGeough deferred the question to the applicant because he did not believe that was one of the exception requests.
Commissioner McKechnie asked if Austin and Niantic are local streets currently at 50 feet wide and the Code requires them to be wider? Mr. McGeough replied that this could be considered a commercial street that has a standard right-of-way of 63 feet. It is currently 50 feet.
Commissioner McKechnie asked if Edwards Street was a minor collector? Mr. McGeough replied that is correct.
Commissioner McKechnie asked what is the reason for the jog on Niantic where the health facility is going to be constructed? Mr. McGeough stated that the record is not clear on how Niantic Street was obtained. It could have been a lot that was purchased. Commissioner McKechnie stated that maybe the applicant could speak to what the right-of-way width is on the north and south half of the block so that the Planning Commission can make a determination on the exception.
Commissioner McKechnie asked if the scoreboard was going to be electronic or manual? Mr. McGeough replied that the scoreboard is going to be electronic but not a high technical scoreboard.
Commissioner McKecknie asked what is the material and how high is the fence around the sports field? Mr. McGeough deferred the question to the applicant.
The public hearing was opened.
a. Scott Sinner, Scott Sinner Consulting, Inc., 4401 San Juan Drive, Medford, Oregon, 97504. Mr. Sinner reported that present in the audience tonight is Chuck Martinez, President of Kids Unlimited, Brian Westerhout, Architect of record from Ron Grimes Architect, and Mark Kamrath, of CEC Engineering. Mr. Sinner presented a slide show that was similar to the one Mr. McGeough presented. The exceptions they are requesting are for lot coverage; right-of-way reduction for Edwards to eliminate the Public Utility Easement, non-standard street section and street tree plan; right-of-way reduction for Austin Street to its current width; and set back reduction for new multi-purpose building. These exceptions along with the conditional use permit will bring the entire campus into compliance with the Code.
The scoreboard is fairly traditional. There will be no live action motion type of sign. They are still in the process establishing the exact size of the scoreboard and the exact location. They will submit a sign application and have it reviewed by staff through the sign ordinance.
They have submitted a circulation plan that the school uses for pickup and drop-off at peak times. Drop-off is at 7:30 a.m. Eighty percent of the students come by bus and twenty percent by passenger car.
The southwestern area of the property on Niantic with the jog is currently public right-of-way. The applicant has discussed this area with Public Works and Planning as to where it came from and how it was used. It is not clear whether it was an alignment issue with Niantic on the north side of Edwards or it was not acquired as a dedication. At the suggestion of Public Works the applicant will consider seeking a revocable encroachment permit to be able to use the area that would be a City Council approval.
Regarding the Edwards Street right-of-way is that the current right-of-way requirement for a minor residential street is 72 feet. It is 36 feet on each side of the centerline. Some of the properties on the north side have already dedicated but not improved. The applicant is seeking the setback exception to match the new building to the existing property line of zero setbacks with the existing building. They are trying to improve the sidewalk. With the approval there would be a new sidewalk of seven feet, with a seven foot bulb-out that would accommodate street trees. It is a thirty foot right-of-way instead of thirty-six feet. The applicant has requested the exception for the right-of-way width dedication. It will be more pedestrian friendly.
The applicant is proposing a wooden side obscuring fence for the classroom and health center. They would like to coordinate with the adjoining property owners of what is acceptable of 6 to 8 feet. There are height limitations of 3 feet for fences at the right-of-way. If they could get the authority to go to 4 feet it may be more appropriate for this instance.
Commissioner Foley asked if this plan was in phases? Mr. Sinner replied yes.
Commissioner D’Alessandro asked if there were any anticipated use of the multi-use athletic field at night? Mr. Sinner replied no and there is no night lighting.
Commissioner McKechnie asked what is the fence material and height on around the athletic field? It is a wrought iron type at 6 feet.
Commissioner McKechnie stated that staff had suggested putting in crosswalks across the alley. Does Mr. Sinner have an opinion on that? Mr. Sinner stated that the only concern he has is that sometimes those crosswalk elements are raised over the existing surface or dissimilar material. The alley may come in as a part of their storm drainage. If they had a raised crosswalk or a speed bump it might me an unintended detention facility. It is a great idea to identify it.
Chuck Martinez, President of Kids Unlimited, 100 Carole Avenue, Medford, Oregon, 97501. Mr. Martinez reported that the interaction between the students and coming out to the playground is supervised. There is no travel in the alley that is not without teachers and supervisors on the playground. He agrees with Mr. Sinner that the flow of storm water and moving it to the facility on Riverside. He does not have a problem with marking the crosswalk but it is a very low volume crosswalk. It is not how that alley is used.
Commissioner McKechnie stated that it sounds like it would be more of a hazard to install crosswalks. Mr. Martinez stated it could potentially restrict the intention of the alley to move water at a given rate. At certain times of the day the alley is blocked off.
Commissioner McKechnie asked what is the tree spacing on Edwards? Mr. Sinner replied that he does not know.
Vice Chair McFadden stated that he has not heard any discussion on the Riverside access. It seems to him with the applicants traffic plan it is unnecessary. Mr. Sinner reported that it is a public dedication currently.
Vice Chair McFadden asked if the athletic field was going to be all sports and will it be open to the public? Mr. Martinez stated that it will not be open to the public. They are looking for an all-purpose year round field in terms of its use versus a turf field that can be problematic during the rainy season. It is a work in process.
b. Mr. Martinez stated that he does not have a particular issue to speak to. This project has been a long time coming. They currently have 300 students. Their waiting list is greater than their students. Each year they grow their classrooms by 50 and that is what this expansion is designed to meet. They feed the students three times a day.
c. Nick Lee, P. O. Box 1239, Ashland, Oregon, 97520. Mr. Lee owns the Tikki apartments Commissioner Mansfield had mentioned the confusion between the letters. They received notice that if they did not respond they would lose standing. They were concerned with excessive buses and late night intermural sports events. Kids Unlimited has been a good neighbor. His concern was that last summer a realtor claiming to represent Kids Unlimited called and stated that he hoped they could agree on a price as he would hate to begin condemnation procedures against Mr. Lee. He has learned now that is not going to be the case. That is what prompted the letter from the attorney.
Commissioner Mansfield stated that only a public body has the power to acquire by imminent domain. That was an irresponsible threat.
d. Joy Pelikan 508 Austin Street, Medford, Oregon, 97501. Ms. Pelikan has concerns with the increased traffic on Niantic and Austin Street. Her other concern is the night lighting. She suggested that the lights at the health center be low and motion detector lights as opposed to on all the time.
Vice Chair McFadden asked if Public Works foresee more school zone signs as the school increases in size? Alex Georgevitch, City Engineer, stated that Public Works in their staff report is requesting a safe route plan for the project. The applicant’s engineer has submitted a plan and Public Works is in review of that plan. Typically that plan is going to look at the need for additional signage, crosswalks, and areas to establish school zones. If the school requests additional signage Public Works will go out and analyze it to make they are in compliance with the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices and the Oregon Statutes for school zones.
Commissioner McFadden asked if Medford has a night light ordinance that directs lights downward instead of upward. Mr. Georgevitch replied that in the public right-of-way Public Works follows the night sky ordinance that no light can extend beyond the horizon of the light. It depends on the height of the light.
Mr. Sinner reported that the applicant is comfortable to comply with the downcast light standard. They will work with staff to make sure they have it in their conditions.
Mr. Sinner addressed the scoreboard a little more. If the applicant reviews the scoreboard as a sign in a residential zoning district the sign is limited to 20 square feet. He suggested as part of this application the applicant would request a sign of 10 feet by 20 feet which is 200 square feet. That seems appropriate for a scoreboard.
Mr. Martinez reported that regarding the health facility, Kids Unlimited has an agreement with La Clinica to support what the school provides in services for their students and their families. There is no reason that the health center will be open in the evenings.
Vice Chair McFadden asked if La Clinica at the school location will be offering their services to the surrounding community as well as the students? Mr. Martinez stated that they are still working on that. He does not know enough about how they organize themselves, whether that has to be community wide. The agreement the school and La Clinica have focuses more on the students and their families.
The public hearing was closed.
Motion: The Planning Commission adopts the applicant’s findings as presented for Criterion 2 and directs staff to prepare a Final Order for approval of CUP-16-022 and E-16-023 per the staff report dated May 5, 2016, including Exhibits AA through T with the addition of crosswalk markings be applied where necessary in the alley for safety.
Friendly Amendment made by Commissioner McKechnie: To include an electronic scoreboard that meets the current Code to be located on the athletic field with the size not to exceed 10 feet by 20 feet.
Moved by: Vice Chair McFadden Seconded by: Commissioner McKechnie
Commissioner D’Alessandro commented that it is nice to see a community project like this where they took the time to get with the neighbors taking into consideration their concerns.
It is admirable of Mr. Lee that he has an affordable housing complex and he keeps his property very nice.
Mr. Georgevitch pointed out that any markings in the public right-of-way have to go through the Public Works Department. The Planning Commission does not have the authority. It needs to meet MUTCD. Public Works is working with the applicant and will sign appropriately.
Mr. Mitton commented regarding the jurisdictional issue of crosswalk markings that Mr. Georgevitch is correct that the crosswalk markings are a matter for Public Works. He recommended amending the original motion by removing that issue and leaving it for Public Works.
Amended Motion: Remove the statement of crosswalk markings in the alley made in the original motion because it is a jurisdictional issue.
Moved by: Commissioner McKechnie Seconded by: Vice Chair McFadden
Voice Vote: Motion passed, 7-0.
60.1 Site Plan and Architectural Commission.
Commissioner D’Alessandro reported that the Site Plan and Architectural Commission met on Friday, May 6, 2016. They heard consideration an 18.83 acre master site plan for the Northgate Office Park and a final site plan for an 8.5 acre portion of the Northgate Office Park consisting of 58,243 square feet of commercial and office building. The Commission voted favorably. They also heard consideration of plans for the construction of a 17-unit multi-family residential project on two parcels totaling 0.46 acres, located on the east side of North Front Street. The Commission voted favorably on this application. They also heard under written communication the request for a conditional use permit for Kids Unlimited. The Commission voted favorably on that item.
60.2 Report of the Joint Transportation Subcommittee.
Commissioner D’Alessandro stated that they have not met.
Chair Miranda asked for a volunteer Commissioner liaison to fill the vacant position on the Joint Transportation Subcommittee. There are usually three Planning Commissioner liaisons on the Joint Transportation Subcommittee. Commissioner D’Alessandro and Commissioner Pulver are already on the subcommittee. There were no volunteers. This item was tabled.
60.3 Planning Department
Kelly Akin, Principal Planner, stated the next Planning Commission study session is scheduled for Monday, May 23, 2016. Discussion will be an update to the environmental element for wetlands.
There is business scheduled for the Planning Commission on Thursday, May 26, 2016, Thursday, June 9, 2016, and Thursday, June 23, 2016.
May is National Historic Preservation month. Last week at the City Council meeting the Mayor read the proclamation to that affect. The City Council also accepted a grant for the Planning Department’s historic work.
At City Council’s next week meeting they will hear the residential site development standards that staff has discussed with the Planning Commission. The City Council will also hear an update to the Planning Department’s fee schedule. Ms. Akin has been informing the Planning Commission that the Urban Growth Boundary amendment was scheduled for City Council on May 19, 2016. It is now scheduled for Thursday, June 2, 2016.
70. Messages and Papers from the Chair. None.
80. Remarks from the City Attorney. None.
90. Propositions and Remarks from the Commission. None.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:08 p.m. The proceedings of this meeting were digitally recorded and are filed in the City Recorder’s office.
Terri L. Rozzana
Planning Commission Chair
Approved: May 26, 2016