Village of North Aurora | Crossroads on the Fox

Plan Commission Minutes

Chairman Brackett called the meeting to order.

In attendance: Chairman Mike Brackett, Co-chairman Jennifer Duncan, Commissioners Mark Carroll, Mark Rivecco, Mark Bozik, Connie Holbrook. Not in attendance: Tom Lenkart and Ed Sweeney.

Staff in attendance: Community Development Director Scott Buening, Village Administrator Wes Kornowske, Village Clerk Lori Murray.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES – September 20, 2011
Motion for approval made by Commissioner Duncan and Commissioner Rivecco. All in favor. Motion approved.

a. 11-009: 417 S. Lincolnway – Special Use for a Motor Vehicle Service Station (Gas Station)(Speedway LLC)
The petitioner (Speedway LLC) requested approval of a special use for a gas station at the northeast corner of Sullivan Road and Route 31. Buening said that Staff has reviewed the application and submitted its report. If the special use is approved, the petitioner will bring a full site plan package before the Village in a few months. 

It was noted that the property has commercial on all sides with the exception of residential to the east. 

(Commissioner Holbrook arrived)

Access is in the same location and there are no intentions of changing that right now. Square footage of the building would be 3,950. There will be 16 fueling positions. Will also increase landscaping and screening. The general building will be multi-colored masonry and the roof will have architectural shingles.

Commissioner Bozik asked about the estimated daily vehicle count for that property. The petitioner said they did not have an answer at this time. Bozik said that the petitioner wants to utilize all three entry points. Question is if asked about the entrance off Sullivan Road to minimize traffic on Offutt Lane. Answer said proximity of Offutt to route 31 is safest point. Buening said Sullivan road is controlled by Aurora now so under their jurisdiction now.

Commissioner Rattray asked the petitioner about their hours of operation. Answer was it would be a 24 hour gas station. 

Rivecco asked if this would be a service/mechanical station. Answer was no. It would be a gas station.

Commissioner Duncan suggested addressing the conditions in Staff’s memo. The petitioner said they would agree to the conditions. Duncan said trucks cannot enter on Offutt Lane. Buening said that the intention is to develop restrictions prohibiting trucks going north bound on Offutt from the site. 

Duncan asked about the future dedication of the eastern 25 feet. Buening said that there is already a 25-foot offset on Offutt lane. The Village would be looking to have the right-of-way expanded in the future to accommodate sidewalks

Commissioner Rattray asked if the other Speedway in town is open 24 hours. Answer was yes. 

Commissioner Carroll asked how many residents are on Offutt Lane. Buening said there are two single family homes and a few multi-family.

The petitioner noted that in terms of any light affecting the houses, there is a 200-foot distance and landscaping that will screen any noise and light that could spill from the canopy. The way the site is oriented, it keeps the majority of action away from the residents. 

Public questions:
Michael McKnight, 7 Lovedale Lane – asked if there would be access going north on Offutt (via Lovedale Lane). McKnight also suggested no truck traffic or delivery vehicles allowed. 

Gary Colton, 409 Offutt Lane – concerned with water retention, water runoff, gas or oil spills. The petitioner said that there are devices and best management plans that are done on all gas stations. There could be a detention pond or an actual structure that would take out all of the oil and grease. That will be designed during the site plan phase. 

Kathy Colton, 409 Offutt Lane – Colton said that the neighborhood opposes proposed gas station. Colton stated that there are infrastructure problems. Offutt and Lovedale are lanes and therefore are small. Coming from the south, vehicles will have to turn at the light, go a few hundred feet and go across several lanes of traffic. This will create a bottleneck by the bridge and Route 31. Colton added that the area is already well served with gas stations and that neighbors are very concerned with extra traffic, lights and a higher crime rate. Colton then provided a petition with 18 signatures. 

Tony Montano, 415 Offutt Lane – concerned that Lovedale and Offutt Lanes are not designed for this type of business. At the top of Offutt Lane there is a Firestone on one side with a cement wall and the road cannot be widened. Montano said that there are a number of houses that have children under the age of 12. Montano said that every house on Lovedale and Offutt will be impacted negatively on a daily basis. 

Jeffery Mars, 419 Offutt Lane – suggested entry and exits be eliminated from Offutt Lane and possibly have a wall built. 

Michael McKnight – McKnight said he shops at the Thornton’s gas station frequently and if a vehicle is trying to go north on Route 31, it has to turn down Sullivan. McKnight said he is concerned with traffic and that there are so many children everywhere. There are no sidewalks. McKnight said that if this goes through, would want huge screening. 

The project manager for Speedway commented that there is a large building currently at the location that has all of the access currently in place. There is nothing to prevent another business coming to that location that would bring in more traffic. Speedway said they would work with everyone to resolve all issues.

Ryan Dolan (Dolan & Murphy, Inc Real Estate) – Mr. Dolan said that the property has been 80% vacant for 3+ years and they have been unable to lease the big portion of the property. Dolan said the gas station would be a good use for the property and that there is excellent activity across the street. This would bring a fresh new look which would benefit that particular area of North Aurora. 

Nancy Jones, 421 Offutt Lane – Jones said her house will be the closest to the proposed Speedway gas station and that her concern is noise abatement. Jones said there is already noise from the railroad tracks and traffic on Route 31. Her concern is with a 24-hour business, slamming doors, yelling, noise from pumping gas, etc. Jones said this would all be within 40- feet of her door. 

Jeffery Mars – Mars said he had inquired with the school district about bus service on their street. The school district said they would never consider going down Offutt Lane because of the condition of the road. Mars said it is not safe and kids have to board the bus on Route 31. The road situation is already a difficult one. 

Marlene Slaughter, 413 Offutt Lane – concerned that when it rains, the curb of Offutt floods over. Trucks will not be deterred from driving down Offutt and another concern is that the canopy for the gas station faces Route 31 and the security cameras will face Route 31 and so people will run through the back yards. 

Rich Sios (Speedway) – Sios said that the Speedways are company-operated stores. Speedway is anticipating hiring 15-20 people and will be an investment of 4 million dollars a year. The company is very involved in the community and will raise 6 million dollars this year for Childrens Miracle Network. Sios said this will be a plus for the neighborhood and for redevelopment. Concerns by residents will be addressed when moving forward with site plan approval.

Chairman Brackett closed the public portion of the hearing.

Commissioner Rattray asked about the Village’s plan for streets such as Offutt and Lovedale since they are in such poor condition. Kornowske said that the Village planned the area as a TIF district two years ago which would help finance the roads. However, the residents spoke out against it and therefore was unable to be designated as a TIF. Offutt and Lovedale have to be slotted into a ten-year road program and as funds become available, the Village spends the money in those areas. Buening said that from a road improvement standpoint, there is very little room for physical improvements on these roads. Heading north, Offutt only has a 30-foot right-of-way and Lovedale only 20 feet. If improvements are to be done, it would be in the form of an overlay. Rattray asked if a condition could be to limit access and post signs, possibly limiting Lovedale to a right-in only. Buening said this would be difficult since the road has a signal and is governed by the state. 

Commissioner Bozik suggested a cul-de-sac at the end of Offutt, adding that this would solve the cut-thru traffic. 

a. 11-009: 417 S. Lincolnway – Special Use for a Motor
Findings of Fact
1. Carroll – agree, Bozik – agree, Duncan – agree, Rivecco – agree, Rattray – agree, Holbrook – disagree. (5-1)
2. Bozik- agree, Rattray- agree, Duncan – agree, Carroll – agree, Holbrook – agree, Rivecco – agree. (6-0) 
3. Duncan – agree, Holbrook – agree, Rattray – agree, Bozik – agree, Carroll – agree, Rivecco – agree. (6-0)
4. Duncan – agree, Holbrook – agree, Rattray – agree, Bozik – agree, Carroll – agree, Rivecco – agree. (6-0)
5. Bozik – agree, Duncan – agree, Rivecco – agree, Rattray- agree, Holbrook – disagree, Carroll – disagree. (4-2)
6. Rivecco – agree, Bozik – disagree, Duncan – disagree, Rattray- disagree, Holbrook – disagree, Carroll – disagree. (1-5)
7. Rivecco – agree, Bozik – agree, Duncan – agree, Rattray – agree, Holbrook – agree, Carroll – agree. (6-0) 

Ingress/egress was a concern and will be addressed in the site plan.

Motion made by Commissioner Carroll and seconded by Commissioner Rivecco for a conditional recommendation to the Village Board with Staff’s conditions provided in the staff report. Speedway will also notify residents at the time they come back for the site plan approval. All in favor. Motion approved.

Buening said this would be addressed at the November 21st Village Board Meeting. 

Chairman Brackett closed the public meeting.

b. 11-008: Subdivision Ordinance Amendments: Driveway Widths and Review Requirements (VONA) 
The current driveway requirements are 16 feet wide and 20 feet to the curb. Staff proposed accommodating a more realistic measurement of 20 feet wide to the property line and 23 feet at the curb line. Rattray suggested the flare be wider by one or two feet. Buening said it was kept at 23 feet in order to keep it proportional. 

Motion for approval made by Commissioner Duncan and seconded by Commissioner Holbrook. All in favor. Motion approved. 


Motion to adjourn made by Commissioner Carroll and seconded by Commissioner Duncan. All in favor. Motion approved.

Respectfully Submitted, 

Lori J. Murray
Village Clerk

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