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LARIMER COUNTY PLANNING COMMISSION
Minutes of September 19, 2012
The Larimer County Planning Commission met in a regular session on Wednesday, September 19, 2012, at 6:30 p.m. in the Hearing Room. Commissioners’ Bohling, Cox, Dougherty, Gerrard, Jensen, Miller, Wallace, and Zitti were present. Commissioner Glick presided as Chairman. Also present were Russ Legg, Planning Director, Matt Lafferty, Principle Planner, Karin Madson, Planner II, Eric Tracy, Engineering Department, Doug Ryan, Health Department, Ron Gonzales, Poudre Fire Authority and Jill Wilson, Recording Secretary.
Mr. Lafferty accompanied Commissioners Bohling, Cox, Dougherty, Gerrard, Miller, Wallace and Zitti on a site visit to Pope Community Hall Special Review and Verizon-Livermore CMRS Special Review
COMMENTS BY THE PUBLIC REGARDING THE COUNTY LAND USE CODE:
COMMENTS BY THE PUBLIC REGARDING OTHER RELEVANT LAND USE MATTERS NOT ON THE AGENDA:
APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES FOR THE JULY 18, 2012 MEETING: MOTION by Commissioner Cox approve the minutes, seconded by Commissioner Dougherty. This received unanimous voice approval.
AMENDMENTS TO THE AGENDA:
ITEM #2 VERIZON-LIVERMORE COMMERCIAL MOBILE RADIO SERVICE SPECIAL REVIEW #12-Z1891: Ms. Madson provided background information on the request for a commercial radio service facility for Verizon Wireless to replace an existing non-conforming 190-foot guyed tower with a new 190-foot self supporting tower that will be capable of co-location located on the east side of Highway 287, approximately 2 miles north of County Road 72.
Commissioner Cox moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:
BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of Verizon-Livermore Commercial Mobile Radio Service Special Review, file #12-Z1891, for the property described on “Exhibit A” to the minutes subject to the following conditions:
1. This Special Review approval shall automatically expire without a public hearing if the use is not commenced within three years of the date of approval.
2. The Site shall be developed consistent with the approved plan and with the information contained in the Verizon-Livermore CMRS Special Review File #12-Z1891 except as modified by the conditions of approval or agreement of the County and applicant. The applicant shall be subject to all other verbal or written representations and commitments of record for the Verizon-Livermore CMRS Special Review.
3. Failure to comply with any conditions of the Special Review (Special Exception) approval may result in reconsideration of the use and possible revocation of the approval by the Board of Commissioners
4. This application is approved without the requirement for a Development Agreement.
5. In the event the applicant fails to comply with any conditions of approval or otherwise fails to use the property consistent with the approved Special Review, applicant agrees that in addition to all other remedies available to County, County may withhold building permits, issue a written notice to applicant to appear and show cause why the Special Review approval should not be revoked, and/or bring a court action for enforcement of the terms of the Special Review. All remedies are cumulative and the County’s election to use one shall not preclude use of another. In the event County must retain legal counsel and/or pursue a court action to enforce the terms of this Special Review approval, applicant agrees to pay all expenses incurred by County including, but not limited to, reasonable attorney’s fees.
6. County may conduct periodic inspections to the property and reviews of the status of the Special Review as appropriate to monitor and enforce the terms of the Special Review approval.
7. The Findings and Resolution shall be a servitude running with the Property. Those owners of the Property or any portion of the Property who obtain title subsequent to the date of recording of the Findings and Resolution, their heirs, successors, assigns or transferees, and persons holding under applicants shall comply with the terms and conditions of the Special Review approval.
8. The tower shall not be lit. The light on the equipment building shall be designed, shielded, aimed, located and maintained to prevent glare and light trespass on abutting properties and the vicinity. In addition, this light shall be equipped with a motion activated and manual switch, so that it is turned on only when needed by maintenance personnel.
Commissioner Dougherty seconded the Motion.
Commissioners’ Bohling, Cox, Dougherty, Gerrard, Jensen, Miller, Wallace, Zitti and Chairman Glick voted in favor of the Motion.
MOTION PASSED: 9-0
ITEM #2 POPE COMMUNITY HALL SPECIAL REVIEW #12-Z1890: Mr. Legg provided background information on the request for 1) a community hall for 22 celebratory events annually, 2) amendments to the seasonal camp element of the Pope Special and Appeal (File #10-Z1777) to reduce the number of seasonal camps to eight, and 3) an appeal to Section 10.5.E of the Larimer County Land Use Code to allow off-premise signage for the proposed uses. The site was located on the north side of Bingham Hill Road, approximately ½ miles west of Overland Trail. He noted that the existing parking lot would consist of 62 parking spaces, which would provide parking for all patrons, employees, and caterer vehicles. All events, with the exception of the seasonal camps, would be between the hours of 9 am to 10 pm. The number of allowable guests on the property would be limited to 99 until such a time adequate fire protection systems were in place. At such a time, the number would not exceed 150. He noted that a licensed security firm or Larimer County Sheriff Deputy would be hired to monitor the events, and “entertainment or dance music” would be held inside the existing gym/multipurpose building. In addition, a 6-foot cedar fence would be erected along with a 13-foot by 35 foot addition to the gym. He mentioned that the application was heard before the LaPorte Area Plan Advisory Committee (LAPAC) on August 21, 2012 in which a recommendation of denial was made. Compatibility was the main issue in their deliberations.
Ron Gonzales, Poudre Fire Authority (PFA), submitted a copy of definitions from the building and fire code book for occupancy classifications. He spoke to the issues of emergency access to the premises and lack of water supply, which he stated was not available or constructed to standards.
Commissioner Wallace asked if the lack of water was in correlation with the number of guests?
Mr. Gonzales replied no, there was just a lack of water in the area. He submitted a water flow test that was conducted on the fire hydrant in 2005, which showed that there was no water available. He explained that the fire hydrant was required to be within 300 feet and it was 600 feet from the gym. Also, water must flow at 1500 gallons per minute at 20 psi pressure, which was not confirmed.
Commissioner Cox asked about the occupancy level of the proposal.
Mr. Gonzales stated that water supply and access were two requirements regardless of what was being built. He explained what was proposed inside a building determined the occupancy classification. The current application proposed a community hall, which was an A-3 occupancy but food beverage was also proposed, which was a classification of A-2, and there were different requirements for each.
Matt Lafferty, Planning Department, stated that a condition of approval could be added regarding compliance with the Poudre Fire Authority. He pointed out that the proposal had been reviewed in the past by PFA, and they had approved the improvements on the site. The turnaround for the project was proposed in the parking lot, which was accepted in previous applications by PFA.
Mr. Gonzales commented that the dimensions of the parking lot did not meet the requirements. The proposal was reviewed as a brand new application, which did not meet their standards for a turnaround.
Commissioner Jensen asked what would be required to meet their standards.
Mr. Gonzales explained that in the parking lot the turning radius did not work. Also, the hammerhead turnaround in the parking lot was too short.
Randy Pope, applicant, stated that the fire department had agreed to fire lanes, turnarounds, etc. with each application that was submitted prior. He stated that he would address the fire department issues. He stated that the building would be fire-sprinklered and be an A-2 occupancy.
Commissioner Dougherty asked if he had an agreement with the off-premise property owner to have a sign on their property.
Mr. Pope stated yes.
Ken Ecton, referenced Section 4.5.1.A of the Land Use Code. He pointed out that a property owner did not have a right to a special use permit just the right to apply for an unauthorized use. He mentioned that the request was for a special use not authorized by the Land Use Code, and to meet a special use the application had to demonstrated that it comply with the review criteria in Sections 4.5.3 & 4.5.5. Those criteria were that the proposed use would be compatible with existing uses and allowed uses in the surrounding area, be in harmony with the neighborhood, and not be the result of substantial adverse impact on the property in the vicinity of the subject property. He stated that it was not an issue of property rights, it was a request for a use that was not authorized. No where in the Code stated that property owners in the vicinity had to abandon their rights. The neighborhood wanted to continue the expectation of use in the area and were not trying to change any use that was authorized. They just wanted to protect their uses as they had been expected to be used. He reiterate that it wasn’t a bunch of neighbors trying to be bad neighbors. The vicinity was being impacted by the special use request, and he wanted to maintain what they currently had.
Shelby Majors, stated that in October 2011 when the third Special Review application was submitted weddings were held to two hours in the pond area but in the current application the two hour restriction was no longer a requirement. She mentioned that when the use was in operation the music was approved to be inside but as music was held in tents, which contributed to the revocation. In the current application, music would be in the gym/multi-purpose room, and she wondered what would happen if that did not occur. She remarked that the project was found to be incompatible with the neighborhood when it was denied in February 2010, when it was revoked in December 2010, and denied again in November 2011. It remained incompatible today.
John Schmid, 4009 Bingham Hill Road, was opposed to the proposal. It introduced a commercial use in a residential neighborhood. He mentioned that LAPAC recommended denial of the application. In addition, the proposal failed to meet the two review criteria of Special Review, which were to be compatible with the other uses of the area and not cause adverse effects on the surrounding property.
Joan Welch-Schmid, stated that she had property in the vicinity of the proposal. She presented parts of the Findings and Resolution from the 2011 proposal, which was denied.
Myrne Watrous, 723 W Olive Street, volunteer for with the Friends of the 1882-83 Waterworks located at the southwest corner of the intersection at Overland Trail and Bingham Hill Road. It was an historic property on the City of Fort Collins list of historic landmarks, and she mentioned that they were applying to be on the State list of historic properties. She also mentioned that there was other historic property in the area. She felt that it was important to maintain the rural atmosphere of the area, and she hoped that the application would be denied as recommended by LAPAC.
Sandy Walker, neighbor to the applicant, stated that it was incompatible with the neighborhood.
Raye Sullivan, neighbor to the subject property, stated that the proposed commercial enterprise had repeatedly shown that it was not compatible in its location. She pointed out that there were 22 weekends during May and September, and the application proposed 22 events, which meant that there could be an event every weekend. The current application had less restrictions, would be more impactful, and had no time limit to events held outside. She remarked that the area was quiet and there would be a loss of property value.
Christine Weiner, stated that she moved to the area was to live in a quiet area and having events every weekend would be a great impact.
Mr. Pope remarked that the Land Use Code was amended to allow Community Hall’s in the FA-Farming zoning district through a Special Review. He stated that the condition of a two hour limit to outdoor activity was a condition placed on by the Planning Director not him. He requested that the LAPAC members be more prepared for meetings. He remarked that weddings did not always occur over the summer months and pointed out that no weddings could be held during the basketball camps which occurred in the summer. He suggested that a conservation easement be put on all properties on Bingham Hill Road from Overland Trail to County Road 23 to ensure that there would be no development. He explained the situation that had occurred for him and his family over the last few years with trying to make the application work and with complying with the conditions. He asked for a chance to use the facility that he had built.
Commissioner Jensen mentioned the noise concerns.
Mr. Pope explained some of the noise mitigation that would occur. He stated that at a field trip done at the property in 2011 with members from the Planning Commission and County Commissioners no noise concerns were found.
Commissioner Gerrard asked why he thought the proposed use was so offensive and what had caused that.
Mr. Pope remarked that he had relationships with many of the neighbors prior to the proposals.
Commissioner Miller asked how many camps were held.
Mr. Pope stated that it was requested to have camps from April through September but most camps would be held during June and July. He explained that the other events would help to support the camps.
Commissioner Gerrard asked if PFA had adopted a new code since the 2010 approval of the proposal.
Mr. Gonzales replied no.
Commissioner Gerrard asked if other people had reviewed the application in the past.
Mr. Gonzales stated that other members of PFA had reviewed the application. He reviewed the current application.
Commissioner Dougherty asked if the septic system could handle the capacity proposed.
Doug Ryan, Health Department, replied yes, the capacity would not be exceeded.
Commissioner Gerrard suggested that if the application was approved that it should be approved with the original approvals of Poudre Fire Authority with the caveat that the applicant try to work out the other outstanding issues with them.
Commissioner Zitti spoke to the issues of the fire department. He stated that there were many conditions tied to the proposal. He read the sound report and was also present during the field trip that tested the sound at which he did not see a problem.
Commissioner Jensen echoed the comments about the new conditions of PFA. He would not be supportive of adding new requirements. He encouraged that the applicant and PFA work through the issues without making it a condition. He stated that there had been a huge effort to make the proposal compatible. He stated that he supported the proposal previously and supported the current application with the current conditions.
Commissioner Bohling stated that the conditions were exceptional, and the proposal could be compatible with the neighborhood if they were all met. He supported the application.
Commissioner Miller felt that the applicant deserved a second chance. He also did not believe that the applicant needed to comply with the new requirements of Poudre Fire Authority.
Commissioner Wallace consistently felt that the proposal was not compatible with the surrounding area. The county would be forced to monitor the proposal, which was not its responsibility.
Commissioner Dougherty stated that the main issue was compatibility, and the applicant had many requirements to abide by. He stated that he was on the ‘sound’ field trip at the site and found that it was hard to hear most of noise that was generated on that field trip. He hoped that the neighbors respected all the work put in by the applicant. He also hoped that the applicant would respect the neighbors concerns. He felt that there were inconsistencies with Poudre Fire Authority comments from the last proposal to the current proposal. He did feel that the water issue needed to be addressed but the other requirements from PFA should not be required.
Commissioner Cox did not feel that the proposal was compatible in the area, and she was not comfortable with having to hire a security firm or officer to monitor the situation. She pointed out that the approval would be in perpetuity. She also mentioned that the applicant had previously got along with the neighbors; therefore, it was a neighborhood that was in harmony that now wasn’t. She also believed that they should support the LaPorte Area Planning Advisory Committee, and she would not be supporting the proposal.
Chairman Glick stated that there was a divided community, which had created an ongoing issue that made the proposal incompatible. The Land Use Code was suppose to protect a quality of life that the community had to continue to fight for over the past few years. He would recommend denial.
Commissioner Wallace moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:
BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners denial of Pope Community Hall Special Review, file #12-Z1890, for the property described on “Exhibit B” to the minutes.
Commissioner Cox seconded the Motion.
Commissioners’ Cox, Wallace and Chairman Glick voted in favor of the Motion.
Commissioners’ Bohling, Dougherty, Gerrard, Jensen, Miller, and Zitti voted against of the Motion.
MOTION FAILED: 6-3
Commissioner Miller moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:
BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of Pope Community Hall Special Review, file #12-Z1890, for the property described on “Exhibit B” to the minutes subject to the following conditions:
h. There shall be no more than 22 celebratory events/activities allowed annually on the property. The number of events shall be counted from January 1 to December 31 in each calendar year, without carryover into subsequent years.
i. Each of the 22 celebratory events/activities shall be limited to a maximum of 99 occupants (150 when adequate fire protection systems are installed and approved by the Poudre Fire Department). It is recognized that an “event” includes the primary gathering of people for the meeting, wedding or celebration as well as some visits to the facility during event planning. For example, wedding rehearsals (not including rehearsal dinners) are considered to be part of the single event, even if the activity occurs on the day prior to the event.
j. All patrons and service personnel shall be required to park in the designated parking lot, which parking lot contains 62 parking spaces (three of which shall be handicapped spaces).
k. Celebratory use of the property shall only be allowed between the hours of 9:00 AM and 10:00 PM.
l. The location, orientation and height of all speakers used for Community Hall activities outside of the gym/multipurpose room shall be as illustrated in the speaker placement plans and further shall be consistent with the sound analysis, prepared by Harms Sound Labs and dated June 24, 2011.
Commissioner Bohling seconded the Motion.
Commissioners’ Bohling, Dougherty, Gerrard, Jensen, Miller, and Zitti voted in favor of the Motion.
Commissioners’ Cox, Wallace and Chairman Glick voted against the Motion.
MOTION PASSED: 6-3
Commissioner Dougherty moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:
BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners that the conditions of approval for the Pope Special Review and Appeal, file #10-Z1777, pertaining to the Seasonal Camps be amended as follows:
Seasonal Camp (2-7 day camps)
Camps limited to 20 participants
Camp season from March 1 to September 30 annually
m. Prior to the commencement of the use the applicant shall to coordinate with Larimer County Engineering Department to install signage at the site access and Bingham Hill Road to warn drivers to use caution due to high levels of bicycle traffic along Bingham Hill Road.
n. Prior to the commencement of the use the applicant shall provide a maintenance agreement for the shared access road serving the site.
Commissioner Gerrard seconded the Motion.
Commissioners’ Bohling, Cox, Dougherty, Gerrard, Jensen, Miller, and Zitti voted in favor of the Motion.
Commissioner Wallace and Chairman Glick voted against the Motion.
MOTION PASSED: 7-2
Mr. Lafferty noted that the current zoning ordinance and the Land Use Code, Section 10, precluded off-premise signs in Larimer County with the purpose to not clutter main road ways and areas with signage. The applicant’s property was separated by Bingham Hill Road by another property even though the driveways were shared. The Planning Department was recommending denial of the request for an off-premise sign. He pointed out where the proposed sign would be and stated that the property owner had agreed to allow the sign on their property.
Chairman Glick asked if the approval of the off-premise sign would run in perpetuity.
Mr. Lafferty stated that the approval would run with the land.
Commissioner Zitti asked if a temporary sign could be erected during events.
Mr. Lafferty explained that the road was eligible for street naming. He stated that the applicant had argued that without signage it created the opportunity for people to bypass the location of entrance into the facility therefore using another driveway to turn around.
Commissioner Jensen was not in support of an off-premise sign.
Commissioner Gerrard concurred.
Commissioner Miller asked how big of a sign could be erected.
Mr. Lafferty stated that rural signage could be up to 32 square feet.
Commissioner Dougherty felt that the property would be at a disadvantage for people trying to find it and for the applicant advertising.
Commissioner Cox moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:
BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners denial of the appeal to Section 10.5.E of the Larimer County Land Use Code to allow an off-premise sign.
Commissioner Zitti seconded the Motion.
Commissioners’ Bohling, Cox, Gerrard, Jensen, Wallace, Zitti and Chairman Glick voted in favor of the Motion.
Commissioners’ Dougherty and Miller voted against the Motion.
MOTION PASSED: 7-2
PROPOSAL REGARDING LARIMER COUNTY PLANNING COMMISSION HEARINGS:
MOTION by Commissioner Jensen to begin the Larimer County Planning Commission meetings with the Pledge of Allegiance, seconded by Commissioner Miller.
Commissioner Dougherty agreed with the suggestion.
Mr. Lafferty asked that the County Attorney advise him on the request to determine if the Bylaws needed to be amended.
Commissioner Jensen made a friendly amendment to the Motion to allow Staff to discuss the issue with the County Attorney.
REPORT FROM STAFF: Mr. Lafferty reminded the Commission of their upcoming meetings.
ADJOURNMENT: There being no further business, the hearing adjourned at 9:18 p.m.
These minutes constitute the Resolution of the Larimer County Planning Commission for the recommendations contained herein which are hereby certified to the Larimer County Board of Commissioners.
Scott Glick, Chairman Nancy Wallace, Secretary
TOWNSHIP TEN NORTH (T10N), RANGE SEVENTY WEST (R70W) LARIMER COUNTY
A TRACT OF LAND IN THE SOUTHWEST ONE-QUARTER (SW1/4) OF SECTION 36, BEING MORE PARTICULARLY DESCRIBED AS FOLLOWS:
BEGINNING AT A POINT WHICH POINT BEARS SOUTH 31 °01’06” EAST A DISTANCE OF 1558.50 FEET FROM THE WEST QUARTER CORNER OF SAID SEC. 36;
THENCE NORTH 51°53’29” EAST A DISTANCE OF 400.00 FEET TO A POINT;
THENCE SOUTH 10°06’31” EAST A DISTANCE OF 400.00 FEET TOA POINT;
THENCE SOUTH 51°53’29” WEST A DISTANCE OF 400.00 FEET TO THE POINT OF BEGINNING.
CONTAINING 3.24 ACRES, MORE OR LESS
TRACT 2, POPE MRD 96-EX0830