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October 23, 2007 Minutes
TOWN OF EAST WINDSOR
Planning and Zoning Commission

Public Hearing #1516
October 23, 2007


***** Draft Document - Subject to Commission Review*****


The Meeting was called to Order at 7:02 p.m. by Chairman Ouellette in the Town Hall Meeting Room, 11 Rye Street, Broad Brook, CT. 06016

ESTABLISHMENT OF QUORUM:

A quorum was established as three Regular Members (Gowdy, Menard, and Ouellette) and three Alternate Members (Farmer, Matthews, and Tyler [arrived at 7:04]) were present.  Regular Members Guiliano and Saunders were absent.  Chairman Ouellette noted Alternate Members Farmer and Matthews would join Regular Members Gowdy, Menard, and Ouellette voting on Applications this evening.  Also present was Town Planner Whitten; attending in the audience was First Selectman Filipone and Selectman Simmons.

ADDED AGENDA ITEMS:     

Town Planner Whitten noted there were no new items to be added to this evening’s meeting, however, she suggested Item 1) Informal Discussion - Scantic Glen Condominium Association, Inc. - 20 active adult single-family homes to be built in the northwest section of Scantic Glen – be postponed from the Business Meeting as the Applicant has requested this discussion be continued; they are unable to attend this Meeting due to family issues.

RECEIPT OF APPLICATIONS:

Chairman Ouellette noted receipt of the following Applications:

1.      Application of Specialty Printing for a Modification of Approved Site Plan – for a 20-space gravel parking lot addition at 4 Thompson Road.  [M-1 zone;  Map 14, Block 19, Lot 103]

2.      Application of Arthur Pronovost for a 2-lot industrial resubdivision of property located at 4 New Park Road, owned by Carol A. and Nancy P. Pronovost.  [M-1 zone;  Map 14, Block 19, Lot 99]

LEGAL NOTICE:

The following Legal Notice, which appeared in the Journal Inquirer on Thursday, October 11, 2007, and Thursday, October 18, 2007, was read by Chairman Ouellette:

1.      Application of Benson Enterprises, Inc. for a Special Use Permit/Site Plan Approval to allow residential units above the first story in commercial buildings at 111 Bridge Street.  [B-1 Zone; Map 1, Block 12, Lot 3].

2.      Application of Srinivas Mothe for a 1-lot resubdivision and Special Use Permit to allow the creation of a rear lot at 142 East Road.  [R-3 Zone; Map 27, Block 55, Lot B4].

NEW HEARING:  Benson Enterprises, Inc. - Special Use Permit/Site Plan Approval to allow residential units above the first story in commercial buildings at 111 Bridge Street.  [B-1 Zone; Map 1, Block 12, Lot 3]   (Deadline to close hearing 11/27/07):

Chairman Ouellette read the Hearing description.   Appearing to discuss this Application was Jay Ussery, of  J. R. Russo & Associates, representing the Applicant, Benson Enterprises, Inc.  Also present was Paul Benson, owner of the property and the developer of this project.

Mr. Ussery noted this parcel is located on the south side of Bridge Street/Route 140 in the Warehouse Point section of East Windsor; the 1.3 acre parcel is east of the Warehouse Point Fire Station and St. John’s Episcopal Church and across the street from Geissler’s Supermarket/Plaza.  Driveway access for this project will be across the street from the new driveway to Geissler’s Plaza.  This proposal is for a mixed use project containing residential/professional office uses similar to Pasco’s Commons.  The Applicant is proposing 4 detached buildings; two buildings will be located at the front of the parcel - one will contain one office unit on the first floor and two residential units on the second floor, while the second building will contain one office unit on the first floor and one residential unit on the second floor.  Two more buildings will be located to the rear of the parcel; each will contain one office unit on the first floor and one residential unit on the second floor, and a single car garage on the south side of the building,   The site is served by all utilities - sewer, gas, water, electricity, etc.  The parcel is located in a B-1 Zone.

Mr. Ussery indicated the parcel presently contains a house in the front, which will be demolished.   The parcel grades from the east to the west.  There is no formal drainage system on the parcel currently.   There is a drainage swale - the Blue Ditch - located on the west side boundary between this parcel and the Warehouse Point Fire Station; most of the drainage swale is on the fire department property.  The Blue Ditch collects water from the northside of Bridge Street north of Geissler’s via a headwall at the northwest corner of the parcel; the water then flows south through the Blue Ditch and eventually drains into the Connecticut River.   There is a small portion of the Flood Plain associated with the Blue Ditch; much of the rear of the fire department and St. John’s Church are within the 100 Year Flood Plain.  

Mr. Ussery noted the B-1 Zone allows for 60% impervious coverage; this proposal will entail 51% impervious coverage.    One parking space is required for every 250 square feet of building area; while 32 spaces are required under this proposal the Applicant is providing 33 parking spaces, 3 of which will be handicapped spaces.   The access drive will end in a circular turn around; discussions with the Fire Marshal have determined accessibility for emergency vehicles and trash pick up is adequate.  

Drainage is being provided via a sub-surface stormwater retention system to be located under the parking lot on the west (downhill) side of the parcel.   Mr. Ussery suggested page 5 of the plan set provides details for a Stormtech Subsurface System, which includes an isolator row to take the first flush from the parking lot.  The stormwater will outlet through a retaining wall on the west side of the property into the wetlands; there is also a retaining wall on the east side of the parcel.  This system provides for a zero increase in peak flow from the site for all storm events (2, 5, 10 and 25 year storms) except a 100 year storm.  During a 100 year storm event the area to the west is in a flood condition, resulting in a slight increase of 0.16 inches.  This condition has been discussed and reviewed with Town Engineer Norton.  Mr. Ussery noted all of Town Engineer Norton’s comments/concerns have been addressed as evidenced by his memo dated 9/26/2007.

As requested by Town Planner Whitten Mr. Benson submitted floor plans of the proposed units.  Residential units will contain 2 bedrooms; some will contain lofts.  Discussion followed regarding the required square footage.   Town Planner Whitten noted Section 502.6 requires 650 square feet for 1 bedroom units, 800 square feet for 2 bedroom units, and 1000 square feet for 3 bedroom units located within a B-1 Zone.  Each dwelling unit requires 100 square feet of landscaping; the five residential units proposed therefore requires 500 square feet of landscaping.   The landscaping plan submitted reflects 962 square feet within the center island itself and other landscaping in other areas around the development.  

Responding to Commissioner’s questions Mr. Benson advised mechanical equipment is contained within the units, with the exception of the air conditioning which is at the rear of the units.  If the air conditioning units couldn’t be located to the rear they would be screened with fencing or trees.  The condominium documents require the garages be used for storage and not converted to office space.  The retaining wall will be a segmented wall - similar to that installed behind Starbucks - the top of the wall near the stormwater outlet is at approximately elevation 40.  The wood guardrails in front of the retaining wall are for pedestrian safety.  Mr. Benson noted there will not be any landscaping on the back of the retaining wall as that area contains wetlands which the Inland/Wetlands Commission has prohibited disturbing.  Chairman Ouellette questioned the use/intent of the “stubs” on the south end of the site?  Mr. Ussery indicated they are spaces for cars backing out of the garages to turn around in.   Chairman Ouellette questioned if they would lend themselves to a connection to the parcel to the south if the opportunity presented itself?  Mr. Ussery and Mr. Benson agreed affirmatively.  Mr. Benson noted new transformer equipment is much better than that used previously; he is not concerned with an excess of noise.  

Discussion followed regarding:  1) the sightline up the hill to the north on Bridge Street, and the potential for installation of sidewalks, including in front of the fire station.   The consensus of the Commission preferred that the Applicant investigate the possibility sidewalks in the proposed design.  2)  working/connecting to the State drainage system, possible easements required, further review by the State prior to completion of project.

Chairman Ouellette opened discussion to the audience:

        Bill Loos, Melrose Road:  1)  suggested connecting buildings 1 and 2.   Mr. Benson indicated he is proposing a village concept and likes to keep the buildings separate; covered/connected drive-throughs didn’t work at Pasco’s Commons.  2)   questioned the ability for fire trucks to get around the green strip.  Town Planner     Whitten noted the review by the Fire Marshal.  3)  felt there should be a turn-in       lane into the project.   Mr. Benson indicated the project will be a low volume traffic generator as these will not be retail units but more of a professional office like a photographers office, etc.

MOTION: To CLOSE the Public Hearing on the Application of Benson                                Enterprises, Inc. for a Special Use Permit/Site Plan Approval to allow residential units above the first story in commercial buildings at 111   Bridge Street.  [B-1 Zone; Map 1, Block 12, Lot 3].

Menard moved/Gowdy seconded/
        VOTE:  In Favor:  Unanimous-Gowdy/Menard/Ouellette/Farmer/Matthews)

MOTION TO APPROVE Application of owner Benson enterprises, Inc. requesting a Site Plan Review and Special Use Permit for a Residential Unit over Commercial space at 111 Bridge Street, [Assessors Map 22, Block 37, Lot 8A] zoned B-1. Said permit is subject to the following conditions:

CONDITIONS OF APPROVAL

Referenced Plans:

1/10 – Cover Sheet with location map 1” = 400’,  11 Bridge Street Commons, 111 Bridge Street, East Windsor CT, property of Benson enterprises, Inc., 16B Pasco Drive, East Windsor CT 06088 prepared by J.R. Russo and Assoc., 1 Shoham Rd, East Windsor Ct, 06088, 860/623-0569, 860/623-2485 fax , dated 9/18/07

2/10 – Demolition Plan, 8/27/07
3/10 – Layout Plan, 8/27/07
4/10 – Grading Plan, 9/18/07

5/10 – Utility Plan, 8/31/07
6/10 – Landscape & Lighting Plan, 8/27/07
7/10 – Erosion & Sediment Notes, 9/18/07
8-10 -  Detail Sheet, 9/18/07
9/10 – Detail Sheet, 8/27/07
10/10 – Detail Sheet, 8/31/07

-Conditions which must be met prior to signing of mylars:

1.      All final plans submitted for signature shall require the seal and live signature of the appropriate professional(s) responsible for preparation of the plans.

2.      The conditions of this approval shall be binding upon the applicant, land owners, and their successors and assigns.  A copy of this approval motion shall be filed in the land records prior to the signing of the final plans.

3.      Building Numbering must be approved by the Town Assessor.  Building numbers must be added to the mylars prior to filing.

Conditions which must be met prior to the issuance of any permits:

4.      One set of final plans for final approval shall be submitted to the Planning Department prior to mylars.

5.      Two full sets of mylars, with any required revisions incorporated on the sheets shall be submitted for signature of the Commission.  One set shall be filed on the Town Land Records, the other in the Planning and Zoning Department.

6.      A cash bond shall be submitted for sedimentation and erosion control maintenance and site restoration during the construction of the project.  Any funds that may be withdrawn by the Town for such maintenance or restoration shall be replaced within 5 days or this permit shall be rendered null and void.  The applicant’s engineer shall submit an estimated cost of the E&S controls to the Town Engineer and the final amount of said bond shall be determined by the Town Engineer.

7.      A Zoning Permit shall be obtained prior to the commencement of any site work.

8.      A Zoning Permit shall be required for each structure.  Structures must be built in location approved on site plan.

Conditions which must be met prior to certificates of compliance:

9.      Final grading and seeding shall be in place or a bond for the unfinished work submitted.
10.     Final as-built survey mylar showing all structures, pins, driveways and final floor elevations, tenant uses as well as spot grades shall be submitted.

11.     All public health and safety components of the project must be satisfactorily completed prior to occupancy. In cases where all public health and safety components have been completed, the Zoning Officer may issue a Certificate of Zoning Compliance provided a suitable bond is retained for any remaining site work.  

12.     Condominium Declarations must be filed for each dwelling unit, and must reflect as built.

General Conditions:

13.     In accordance with Section 13.5.4 of the Zoning Regulations, any approval of a site plan application shall commence the construction of buildings within one year from the date of approval and complete all improvements within five years of the date of approval, otherwise the approval shall become null and void, unless an extension is granted by the Commission.

14.     Garages must be used for garage purposes, and may not be converted to alternative uses.

15.     This project shall be constructed and maintained in accordance with the filed plans.  Minor modifications to the approved plans that result in lesser impacts may be allowed subject to staff review and approval.

16.     Any modifications to the proposed drainage or grading for the site plan is subject to the approval of the town engineer.

17.     Additional erosion control measures are to be installed as directed by town staff if field conditions necessitate.

18.     By acceptance of this approval and conditions, the applicant, owner and/or their successors and assigns acknowledge the right of Town staff to periodically enter upon the subject property for the purpose of determining compliance with the terms of this approval

19.     Cars may not at anytime be parked in landscaped areas, unless approved as such on the site plan.

20.     All required landscaping shall be adequately maintained.

(Additional Condition):

21.     Sidewalks required along Bridge Street; design and location to be approved administratively.

Gowdy moved/Farmer seconded/
        VOTE:  In Favor:  Unanimous-Gowdy/Menard/Ouellette/Farmer/Matthews)

NEW HEARING:  Srinivas Mothe - 1-lot resubdivision and Special Use Permit to allow the creation of a rear lot at 142 East Road.  [R-3 Zone; Map 27, Block 55, Lot B4]  (Deadline to close hearing 11/27/07):

Chairman Ouellette read the Hearing description.  Appearing to discuss this Application was Attorney Len Jacobs and Jay Ussery of J. R. Russo & Associates, both representing the Applicant.  

Attorney Jacobs reported the Application is for a resubdivision and Special Use Permit for a rear lot to be cut from a 4.19 acre parcel located on East Road.   The proposal would create 2 lots, Lot #1 would contain 1.89 acres with the existing house, and Lot #2 would contain 2.3 acres including an access strip to East Road.  Attorney Jacobs noted they are also seeking a waiver of the sidewalk requirements, as there are no sidewalks presently on East Road.  He further noted that in 1993 a 2 lot resubdivision and rear lot was granted to Hugette Alaimo; that subdivision map wasn’t recorded.  This Application is the same as that proposal, and meets all zoning requirements; Attorney Jacobs reviewed rear lot criteria as cited under Section 4.08.

Mr. Ussery noted signs have been posted on the site as required; Certified mailings were made to abutters and receipts submitted to the Planning Department.  

Mr. Ussery also noted a typo on page 3 of 3 of the plan set; the driveway to the rear lot will be on the north side of the property.  A row of hemlocks presently exists which blocks the view of the property from the neighboring properties which front on Depot Street; they will be adding more arborvitae to complete the screening.  The parcel slopes from the north to the south; sheet flow goes in that direction towards property owned by Steve Dearborn via a drainage swale at the back of the existing house.  The impact of one additional house on the Dearborn property has been discussed; it is felt that drainage flow wouldn’t increase that much but they could install drywells for the roof leaders and infiltrate the water into the ground.   The soils in this area are sandy and gravel in excess of 100 inches, which is good for drainage.  The North Central Health District (NCHD) has reviewed the plans and approved same for an on-site septic system, which will be 150 feet (double the required distance) from an on-site well.   Town Planner Whitten noted receipt of the NCHD approval dated 10/12/2007.

Commissioner Matthews requested an additional 50’ of screening at the turn into the dwelling site of the second dwelling.   Mr. Ussery agreed that could be done but the area is wooded now; they would be cutting out the existing vegetation to put back more arborvitae.   Town Planner Whitten noted same is not required but would leave that decision to the Applicant.  Commissioner Gowdy questioned that there would be underground utilities?   Mr. Ussery replied affirmatively.   Chairman Ouellette questioned the sightline/distance on East Road looking towards the south?  Mr. Ussery noted the proposed driveway curb cut is next to the existing driveway.  He agreed that the sightline goes down near the Dearborn property but he didn’t have any problem with the visibility himself.  

Discussion turned to the request for the waiver of sidewalks.  Chairman Ouellette referred to a Fee-In-Lieu-Of-Sidewalks, at a rate of 40% of the cost of installation.  Town Planner Whitten questioned that this Application would apply as it involves only two lots.   Attorney Jacobs suggested they would consider this a resubdivision and would not disagree with a Fee-In-Lieu-Of-Sidewalks.  

Chairman Ouellette queried the audience for comments:

Steve Dearborn, 144 East Road:  indicates he has no problem with the proposal as presented; he originally thought the new driveway was to go past his bedroom window.  He is not concerned with run off as they are sitting on a gravel bank and even during heavy rains the water runs off the site.  

MOTION: To CLOSE the Public Hearing on the Application of  Srinivas Mothe for a 1-lot resubdivision and Special Use Permit to allow the creation of a rear lot at 142 East Road.  [R-3 Zone; Map 27, Block 55, Lot B4]  

Farmer moved/Menard seconded/
        VOTE:  In Favor:  Unanimous-Gowdy/Menard/Ouellette/Farmer/Matthews)

MOTION TO APPROVE the fee in lieu of open space in the sum of $2,000.00 for the new rear lot.

Gowdy moved/Menard seconded/
        VOTE:  In Favor:  Unanimous-Gowdy/Menard/Ouellette/Farmer/Matthews)

MOTION TO APPROVE Waivers for
Section 6.3 – Sidewalks – reason being that there are no sidewalks in the area.

Gowdy moved/Matthews seconded/
        VOTE:  In Favor:  Unanimous-Gowdy/Menard/Ouellette/Farmer/Matthews)

MOTION TO APPROVE the application of owner Srinivas Mothe, for a special use permit for a rear lot in accordance with Section 408 of the East Windsor Zoning Regulations and , and a 2 lot re-subdivision in accordance with the East Windsor subdivision regulations, at 142 East Road, [Map #27, Blk. 55, Lot B4] in the R-3- Zone This approval is granted subject to conformance with the referenced plans (as may be modified by the conditions) and the following conditions of approval:

Referenced Plans:
Sheet 1/3 - Key Map – Re-Subdivision – Special Use Permit/Rear Lot, property of Srinivas Mothe, 142 East Rd., East Windsor, CT Map 27, Block 55, Lot B4, Zone R-3, prepared by J.R. Russo & Assoc., 1 Shoham Rd, East Windsor, CT, 06088, 860/623-0569, 623-2485 –fax dated 10/3/07

        Sheet 2 /3 – Re-Subdivision Plan        
        Sheet 3/3 – Topographic Plan

Conditions which must be met prior to signing of mylars:

1.      The applicant shall submit a paper copy of the final approved plans to the Town Planner for review and comment prior to the submission of the final mylars.

2.      All mylars submitted for signature shall require the seal and live signature of the appropriate professional(s) responsible for preparation of the plans.

3.      If the $2,000 fee per lot, payable to the Town Treasurer, is not paid prior to the       filing of the final mylars, the mylars shall contain a clearly visible notation for each applicable lot stating, “Any sale or transfer of this property within five (5) years of the original (re)subdivision approval to a person not exempt under section 7.10 of East Windsor’s Subdivision Regulations shall result in the liability of payment ($2,000) to the Town of East Windsor for the total fee as defined in Section 7.6 of East Windsor’s Subdivision Regulations”.

4.      The conditions of this approval shall be binding upon the applicant, land owners, and their successors and assigns.  A copy of this motion shall be filed in the land records prior to the signing of the final mylars.

Conditions which must be met prior to the issuance of any permits:

5.      Two sets of final mylars, with any required revisions incorporated on the sheets shall be submitted for signature of the Commission.  One set of signed fixed line mylars, , shall be filed with the Town Clerk by the applicant no later than 90 days after the 15 day appeal period from date of  publication of decision has elapsed or this approval shall be considered null and void, unless an extension is granted by the Commission.  One set of mylars, sheets shall be filed in the Planning and Zoning Department.

6.      Detailed sedimentation and erosion control plans shall be submitted with the site plan for each parcel at time of application for a zoning permit.

7.      A cash (escrow) or passbook bond shall be submitted for erosion and sedimentation (E & S) control maintenance and site restoration during the construction phase of the project.  Any funds that may be withdrawn by the Town for such maintenance or restoration shall be replaced within 5 days or this permit shall be rendered null and void.  The applicant’s engineer shall prepare an estimated cost of the E & S controls for review by the Town Engineer.  The final amount of said bond shall be determined by the Town Engineer.

Conditions which must be met prior to certificates of compliance:

8.      Iron pins must be in place at all lot corners and angle points.

9.      Final Health District approval of the drinking water supply must be demonstrated.

10.     The driveway must have a 15’ paved apron or if weather does not permit, a bond  for such submitted.

11.     Final grading and seeding shall be in place , or if weather does not permit, a bond     for the unfinished work be submitted.

12.     All required landscaping shall be in place, or if weather does not permit, a bond       for the required plantings shall be submitted.

13.     Final as-built survey showing all structures, pins, driveways, final floor      elevations, and grading must be submitted.

14.     All public health and safety components of the project must be satisfactorily completed prior to occupancy.  In cases where all public health and safety components have been completed, the Zoning Officer may issue a Certificate of Zoning Compliance provided a suitable bond is retained for any remaining site work.

General Conditions:

15.     This subdivision approval shall expire (five years form the date of approval).  Failure to complete all required improvements within that time shall invalidate the subdivision.  The developer may request an extension of time to complete the subdivision improvements from the Planning and Zoning Commission.  Such extension shall not exceed the time limits as provided for in the Connecticut General Statutes, Section 8-26 as may be amended from time to time.  The Commission shall require proper bonding be in place prior to approval of any such extension.

16.     A Zoning Permit shall be obtained prior to any the commencement of any site work.

17.     This project shall be constructed and maintained in accordance with the referenced plans.  Minor modifications to the approved plans which results in lesser impacts may be allowed subject to staff review and approval.

18.     Any modifications to the proposed drainage or grading of the subdivision is subject to the approval of the Town Engineer.

19.     Additional erosion control measures are to be installed as directed by Town Staff if field conditions necessitate.

20.     By acceptance of this approval and conditions, the applicant, owner and/or their successors and assigns acknowledge the right of Town staff to periodically enter upon the subject property for the purpose of determining compliance with the terms of this approval.

21.     Should the property transfer ownership before all work is completed, or before a certificate of completeness is issued, the new owner must place new bonds in their name, at which time the original bond may be released.

(Additional Condition):

22.     A Fee-In-Lieu-of Sidewalks will be required.

Gowdy moved/Menard seconded/
VOTE:   In Favor:  Unanimous-Gowdy/Menard/Ouellette/Farmer/Matthews)

BUSINESS MEETING/(1)  Informal Discussion - Scantic Glen Condominium Association, Inc. - 20 active adult single-family homes to be built in the northwest section of Scantic Glen:  

Postponed.

BUSINESS MEETING/(2)  Correspondence:     None.

BUSINESS MEETING/(3)  Staff Reports:

*       Town Planner Whitten noted Katie Bednez has been hired for the Assistant Planner position and will be starting 11/5/2007.

*       Discussion of continuing revision of Zoning Regulations; potential subjects:  fee schedule, village district regulations for Broad Brook and Warehouse Point, rezoning on Route 140.  First Selectman Filipone reported that the WPCA has requested as part of their CIP        money for an engineering study to install sewers along Route 140.   He suggested it would make sense to look at rezoning Route 140 to run parallel with that study; the Town is running out of commercial space.  Town Planner Whitten to prepare a prioritized list for the Commission.

*       Town Planner Whitten suggested she is looking into the attendance of a land use professional addressing the Commission on its role regarding procedural due process, FOI, legal issues, etc.

*       Chairman Ouellette suggested Commission elections should be scheduled in November.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES/October 9, 2007:

MOTION: To APPROVE the Minutes of Public Hearing #1515 dated October 9,                         2007 as amended:  Page 1, Added Agenda Items, the meeting date  within the last sentence to be revised as follows:  “The Item of  Business will be postponed until the Commission’s next regularly scheduled meeting on October 25, 23, 2007.”

Gowdy moved/Menard seconded/
VOTE:   In Favor:  Unanimous-Gowdy/Menard/Ouellette/Farmer/Matthews)

SIGNING OF MYLARS/PLANS, MOTIONS:

        *       M & L Development - Site Plan/Settlement at Mason’s Brook
        *       Southern Auction Sales - Site Plan for 90 South Main Street

ADJOURNMENT:

MOTION: To ADJOURN this Meeting at 8:45 P. M.

Menard moved/Gowdy seconded/VOTE:  In Favor:  Unanimous

Respectfully submitted,

_______________________________________________________________
Peg Hoffman, Recording Secretary, East Windsor Planning and Zoning Commission