Plan Commission Minutes
VILLAGE OF NORTH AURORA
PLAN COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
JULY 7, 2015
CALL TO ORDER
Chairman Brackett called the meeting to order.
In attendance: Chairman Mike Brackett, Co-Chairman Jennifer Duncan, Commissioners Connie Holbrook, Mark Bozik, Doug Botkin, Mark Rivecco, Aaron Anderson, Tom Lenkart. Not in attendance: Commissioner Anna Tuohy.
Staff in attendance: Village Administrator Steve Bosco, Community & Economic Development Director Mike Toth, Village Clerk Lori Murray.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
1. Approval of Plan Commission Minutes dated May 5, 2015
Correction to be made to the Roll Call for the May 5, 2015 Minutes to reflect Commissioner Mark Rivecco. Commissioner Lenkart mentioned that conditions were made to the Hardware restaurant Motion at the May meeting but not noted in the Minutes. Toth said there was a condition for trailer size and for lighting on Tanner Road for the Hardware restaurant. Toth noted that when ordinances are forwarded to the Village Board, the conditions are reflected in the ordinance and the Board sees any recommendations by the Plan Commission. With those changes, a Motion for approval was made by Commissioner Rivecco and seconded by Commissioner Duncan. All in favor. Motion approved.
Chairman Brackett opened the public hearing.
1. Petition #15-03 (310 S. Lincolnway); The petitioner, North Aurora Self Storage,
requests the following actions:
1. Special Use to allow a Self Service Storage Facility in the B-2 General Business District, pursuant to Section 17.8.2 of the North Aurora Zoning Ordinance
2. Special Use to allow a Planned Unit Development in the B-2 General Business District, pursuant to Section 5.4(B) of the North Aurora Zoning Ordinance.
3. Site Plan Review
Atty Philipchuck, representing Phil and Jack Murphy of Next Door Storage, LLC, addressed the Plan Commission. Bill Caton of Caton Commercial was in attendance to provide information on the prospects for retail coming to the proposed site. Also in attendance was Lou Wilson, architect.
Phil Murphy addressed the Plan Commission and stated that their company owns and operates 14 storage facilities in the area. They are looking to invest $4 million into the property at 310 S. Lincolnway. This location is not something that will lend itself to retail and would be a good location to build North Aurora Self Storage. Murphy stated that the building will be made entirely of brick and include quite a bit of landscaping. They will also be quadrupling the amount of green space on the site.
Atty. Philipchuck said that the existing 40,000 s.f. building will be a climate-controlled storage facility. The rest of the units will be in five outdoor buildings and will be non-heated overhead garage door type storage. There are no requests for incentives. The building will have an office and there will be some retail sales. Hours of operation will be 6 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Bill Caton of Caton Commercial mentioned that Route 31 is no longer the retail corridor since that has moved to Orchard and Randall Roads. Route 31 will act more as a service corridor. The Village needs investors who will put the money back into the area and once that happens, retailers will follow.
AUDIENCE COMMENTS - None
Chairman Brackett closed the pubic portion of the hearing.
Commissioner Lenkart asked if the green doors along the front of the building on Route 31 are functional or decorative. Answer was decorative. Lenkart asked the petitioner how much of an increase there would be to real estate tax revenue. Phil Murphy answered that many assessors will look at the improvements that were done and would expect the $4 million evaluation. Typical property tax would be around $60,000 a year. Five percent of the $60,000 would go to the Village. Commissioner Bozik said that due to the years left on the TIF, no one will see the impact for nine years.
Commissioner Lenkart said he looks at this long term and how will it impact North Aurora years from now. Lenkart said this is a negative impact. All communities are looking at improving Route 31. Putting a storage facility in this location does not make sense. Lenkart added that what is needed is more restaurants and food-related businesses. Lenkart said that the Village is slowly recovering from the economic depression and did not see how another storage facility at the entrance to the village will improve North Aurora.
Commissioner Duncan asked if the landscape area on the north side of Smoketree will be part of the Village’s initiative. Toth said that Teska provided quotes for the north side of Smoketree and the exit way at the Tollway. The petitioner pulled some of the landscaping to their property.
Brackett asked if the petitioner would use the current access off of Route 31. Bosco said they are looking to put in a pork chop access. There is also access at the Rte. 31 Lovedale intersection.
Brackett asked if it will be a Smoketree or Route 31 address. Toth responded that the subject property has a Lincolnway address.
Duncan said this business may be an attribute for this location.
Commissioner Holbrook asked how many employees will be at the storage facility. Phil Murphy answered, three. Holbrook agreed that these improvements may increase other business activity in the area.
Bozik noted that he did not see any landscaping on the entire south elevation of the property. .
Bozik asked how many trips would be generated on a daily basis. Phil Murphy answered, 15-20 vehicle trips a day. Bozik asked where the HVAC units would be located. Phil Murphy answered, the units will be on the roof. Bozik said these would need to be screened. Toth stated that they are required to be screened per the Zoning Ordinance. Bozik asked what the feedback was when the petitioner went before the Village Board. Phil Murphy answered that there were three in favor and three against. Bozik said that the petitioner had a nice product but did not think the site was the proper location since it is at the gateway to the Village.
Murphy said that storage facilities in the area are at 97% occupancy and that there is a need. Commissioner Botkin said there are three storage facilities in the village and asked if they are all at 97% occupancy. Toth stated that staff was able to contact two of the three and they are all in the 90% range. Botkin said he liked the concept but did not feel it was the right location.
Commissioner Anderson stated the subject property is challenging from a redevelopment perspective and he would go along with Staff’s recommendation. He felt that it was a very good use for the property. Anderson asked about construction time. Phil Murphy answered, 10 months.
Commissioner Rivecco said he would like something more retail for the property, but thinks this is the best use to improve the eyesore and improves the look of the entryway to the Village.
Chairman Brackett asked the Plan Commission members for their opinion for the proposed project.
The Plan Commission was in agreement that the recommendations by Staff regarding the standards were met.
Motion made by Commissioner Bozik and seconded by Commissioner Holbrook for approval of Petition #15-03, subject to the conditions set forth by Village Staff as well as the following:
• Integrate addition building materials and architectural elements to visually enhance the façade of the south elevation of the bowling alley building.
• Install additional landscaping along southern property to act as additional buffering.
• Work with the North Aurora Fire District to determine whether additional access to the site is warranted (i.e. fire lane).
• Work with Commonwealth Edison to determine the physical and financial feasibility of burying the overhead power lines located along the southern portion of the property.
Roll Call Vote: Rivecco – yes, Anderson – yes, Holbrook – yes, Duncan – yes, Bozik – yes, Botkin – no. Motion approved (5-1).
1. Village staff would like to solicit feedback from the Plan Commission relative to text
amendments associated with accessory buildings and authorized variations.
Toth reviewed the staff report on the matter and discussed the need to regulate accessory buildings on non-residential properties separate and the need to reevaluate the types of variations that can be petitioned. Mark Bozik stated that any amendments would need to be in conformance with the building code. Bozik suggested accessory structures have the same material as the main structure in non-residential districts so that it is aesthetically pleasing. The Plan Commission was in agreeance with staff on the need to revisit the types of variations that can be petitioned as they are rather rigid now. Toth said he would go back to the Village attorney to determine if there are any legal problems with amending the variation language.
Comprehensive Plan was been approved.
PLAN COMMISSIONER COMMENTS AND PROJECT UPDATES
• Hardware restaurant was approved and are close to permit issuance.
• Staff is working with a 300-unit Class A apartment complex for Orchard and Oak. Concept plan received positive feedback from the Village Board. Waterford Oaks HOA representatives were in attendance and were also in favor of the plan.
Motion to adjourn made by Commissioner Duncan and seconded by Commissioner Botkin. All in favor. Motion approved.
Lori J. Murray