Committee of the Whole Minutes
VILLAGE OF NORTH AURORA
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE MEETING
NOVEMBER 6, 2017
CALL TO ORDER
Mayor Berman called the meeting to order.
In attendance: Mayor Dale Berman, Trustee Mark Gaffino, Trustee Mark Lowery, Trustee Laura Curtis, Trustee Mark Carroll, Trustee Tao Martinez, Trustee Mark Guethle, Village Clerk Lori Murray.
Staff in attendance: Village Administrator Steve Bosco, Public Works Director John Laskowski, Police Chief Dave Fisher, Community & Economic Development Director Mike Toth, Finance Director Bill Hannah, Village Attorney Kevin Drendel, Village Engineer Jim Bibby.
TRUSTEE COMMENTS - None
1. Aurora Area Visitors and Convention Bureau Intergovernmental Agreement
Village Administrator Steve Bosco informed the Board that the Village is at the end of a 5 year agreement with the Aurora Area Visitors and Convention Bureau and it is now up for renewal.
The Village has a 3% hotel/motel tax of which 90% goes to fund the organization to promote tourism in the North Aurora and Aurora area. By state law, non-home-ruled communities have to use all the money generated by hotel/motel taxes to promote tourism. If approved, the agreement would go to the next board meeting for a formal approval. Trustee Curtis suggested not charging a motel tax and letting each private enterprise rely on its own marketing effort. Bosco said that in home rule communities, local/hotel taxes can go up to 5% and that the 3% is in line with other groups in this region. Curtis asked why municipalities need to be subsidizing the marketing budget for private companies. Mayor Berman said that from an economic development standpoint, the Village could not have afforded the kind of expertise it is getting from the Convention Visitors Bureau to bring people into the area to stay in our hotels.
Cort Carlson, Executive Director of the AACVB said that North Aurora has been a long term supporter of the regional tourism effort. North Aurora fund is about $30,000 annually and we can leverage that onto a marketing and sales budget of a half million dollars. Berman said that it is important to continue with the AACVB for the economic development of our community.
2. Silo Park Proposals
John Laskowski, Public Works Director, addressed the Board. In July, Staff developed a request for qualifications and distributed it to a number of companies that would be qualified to develop a design for the Silo and park. Staff assembled a team of evaluators to review the responses from 16 companies and narrowed it down to four. The recommended consulting firm at this time is Mueller & Mueller and the Village will negotiate a contract with the scope of work and cost. At the next Village Board meeting, will present the scope of work and the negotiated cost for consideration to move forward with the project. Steve Bosco added that the consultants for Mueller & Mueller were present and the Village has money in the budget this year specific for the design and preliminary concept engineering.
3. Fox Valley Golf Course/ D.R. Horton Concept Plan
Mike Toth, Community & Economic Development Director, addressed the Board. The Village has been working with D.R. Horton on development of the Fox Valley Golf Course, a 102-acre golf course located on the east side of Route 25. The Development Committee reviewed a second draft of the plan on September 20th of this year. There was support for the mixed-use development which will be a single family, two family and townhome mixed use residential development with an age targeted concept.
Jim Griffin, Zoning Attorney with the law firm of Shain Banks in Chicago, IL noted those in attendance from their team: Mark Fields and Chris Natz of D.R. Horton, Chuck Hanlon and Adam Rack of WBK Engineering, Kevin Serafin, Civil Engineer and Lynn Means, Traffic Engineer
Mark Fields of D.R. Horton addressed the Board. D.R. Horton is the largest builder in the nation by volume, located in 79 markets across 26 states. They build under multiple brands with price points ranging from $100,000 to over $1 million. D.R. Horton has been building in the Chicagoland area for over 50 years. They are currently building in the Village at Windstone Place on Oak Street.
Chris Natz of D.R. Horton addressed the Board regarding a lifestyle active community. D.R. Horton is proposing an active adult age targeted community. The community will include a clubhouse, ponds, walking paths and open spaces. Types of homes will include single family homes, duplexes or paired villas and ranch styles homes.
Chuck Hanlon of WBK Engineering addressed the Board. The single family homes will be developed to the north, townhomes to the southwest and the duplexes to the southeastern portion of the property. The proposal is for a planned unit development with the 3 underlying zonings for the appropriate land uses of R1, R3 and R4. The current plan has a 7-acre park located towards the center of the property. There is a drainage way through the site that will take water from the east side of Banbury, through a culvert underneath Banbury Road, and moves through the site. During final engineering, special attention will be made to preserving key trees in the area.
At a previous meeting with the Village, comments were made that the plan was too dense. The plan was revised with the following:
-Minimum lot width increase to 53’ from 50’
-Existing drainage corridor is preserved to be featured as open space.
-Tree protection area designated.
-Sidewalks have been provided on both sides of the streets.
-A 7-acre park and a trail system was incorporated into the plan, connecting through the parks and into the neighborhoods.
-A 5,000 s.f. community center building to be built and located as the main view when entering the community.
-A 10% decrease in lots from the previous plan, resulting in the following # of lots:
149 single family lots
126 duplex lots
99 townhome lots is
Trustee Carroll asked if the streets that exit onto Banbury match up with any of the properties or streets into the neighborhood on the east. Toth said they will connect onto the north leg, but not the south.
Trustee Martinez said that the plan brings a nice balance of homes to the area. Martinez said there is a lot of water retention areas and wants to make sure that drainage does not impact negatively on the adjacent neighborhoods. Kevin Serafin of Cemcon Engineering said they are currently doing a study of the neighboring neighborhoods and working closely with the village engineering on getting a better understanding about how the existing drainage works and meeting both the local and county ordinances. Trustee Carroll asked when the study will be available. Serafin said they are currently working on it and will have a full report as they get closer to preliminary engineering.
Trustee Curtis thanked D.R. Horton for listening to the Village’s concerns. Curtis said she was still concerned about density and said there are too many houses for too small of a space.
Trustee Guethle said he liked the plan and the changes the developer made. Guethle added that there is a need for this type of product in the area.
Trustee Gaffino said he liked the plan but was concerned with water issues as this property develops. Gaffino said that his other concern was with cars having to pull out onto Route 25 with the speed limit being 50 mph. Jim Bibby, Village Engineer, said that there will be traffic study to look at the turn bay and geometric improvements.
Trustee Carroll said he really liked the concept and the location is a great place for this community. Carroll said he had concerns with the 2 long roads that are straightaways. The developer said that they are looking at breaking up the length of the streets and can also look at traffic calming ideas.
EXECUTIVE SESSION - None
Motion to adjourn made by Trustee Guethle and seconded by Trustee Curtis. All in favor. Motion approved.
Lori J. Murray