Planning Board Minutes from 10/26/2006
 

Borough of Kenilworth

567 Boulevard

Planning Board Minutes

October 26, 2006

The meeting began with an affirmation of the Open Public Meetings Act requirements and the Pledge of Allegiance.  The Minutes from September 28, 2006 were approved, with minor corrections.  Approval was given to pay the Recording Secretary and the Board Attorney.

Roll Call:  Present:  Mr.Cirillo, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Beninati, Mr. Soos, Mr. Peters, Mr. Candarella, Mr. Corcione, Mr. O’Malley, Mr. Pantina, and Mr. Schielke.  Absent:  Mr. David and Mr. Laudati.

Resolution for Denial:  Application #31-06, Medina, 433 Boulevard, Block 111, Lot 1, a Denial for Change of Use to a Real Estate Office in an R-2, single family, zone.  Mr. Michitsch made a motion to accept this resolution for denial, 2nd by Mr. O’Malley.  All in favor:  Mr. O’Malley, Mr. Corcione, Mr. Beninati, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Cirillo, and Mr. Schielke.

New Business:  Application # 302, Haag, 24 North 20th Street, Block 80, Lot 18, a site plan application to rebuild a fire-damaged restaurant.  Mr. Triarsi, attorney for Mr. Haag, pointed out there was an error on a list given the applicant.  The neighboring addresses for notification failed to include Block 81, Lot 21. In addition, the Board engineers’ comments on this application will need to be addressed.  As a result, the attorney requested this application be postponed until the November 16, 2006 meeting.  All members agreed on this request and that Mr. Chioffi must be notified by certified mail before the next meeting.  A vote was taken, and a majority of the Board required an additional notification by regular mail concerning this change of hearing date (to the previously noticed neighbors).

Application #33-06, Devlin, 668 Union Avenue, Block 152, Lot 10, a setback variance for and addition.  Sworn in:  Michael Devlin.  He wants an addition to his cape-type home with a three-quarter wrap-around porch.  Presently, the house has an insufficient front yard (24.7’ from the front setback).  A second floor add-a-level would create a 23’ front setback.  He is also requesting a porch be added, making an additional 6.5’ (with the stoop) infringement on the present non-conforming setback.  Mr. Pantina suggested a side porch would not require additional setback variances.  Mr. Peters considered Mr. Devlins’ request a hardship.  Two other cases were turned down with similar requests, and Mr. Michitsch and Mr. Soos said this approval could set precedents.  Mr. O’Malley suggested a smaller, centered porch might be more acceptable.   Mr. Candarella asked if the applicant would be willing to build a sixteen foot centered porch.  Mr. Fraser asked if applicant agrees to a 6’ x 16’ centered porch.  Mr. Devlin would agree. The new plan must show this modification before the next meeting on November 16, 2006.

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 Mr. Candarella made a motion to accept this application (with plan modification), 2nd by Mr. Peters.  All in favor:  Mr. Soos, Mr. Peters, Mr. O’Malley, Mr. Corcione, Mr. Candarella, Mr. Beninati, and Mr. Cirillo.  Opposed:  Mr. Michitsch and Mr. Pantina.

Application #298, Union Baptist Church, 350 Sheridan Avenue, corner of 306 North 13th Street, Block 10, Lot 5, for a site plan.  Mr. Gary Goodman is the attorney for the church.  He said a neighbor, Mr. Gardner, president of Brent Materials on 14th Street, was not aware of factors concerning the property lease on 13th Street.  In addition, the engineer for this application is not present.  The applicant would take direction of the Board as to a possible postponement.  Mr. Beninati said the drawings are not complete, according to the Review Committee.  Mr. Peters said there are certain architectural and engineering modifications to be made on the plans (the size and design) and the pastor was made aware of them.  Mr. Peters suggested a meeting be set up before the next meeting with Mr. Gardner, the Board, and the Union Baptist church.  Sworn in:  Richard Gardner.  He stated the town leased (for parking) the “paper street” known as No. 13th Street (Sheridan Avenue to Lafayette Avenue).  This goes through Mr. Gardner’s’ property.  In addition, this would create “no access” to two parcels of land he owns.  He would like to see this street “vacated”.  Some time ago, he gave a parcel of land to the church, if they agreed to have the street approved as “vacated”.  In addition, a sewer along the brook required he relinquish another part of his property for an easement.  He agreed to this and, again, requested 13th Street be approved as “vacated”. The unpaved portion of the street (north of Sheridan) continues to Lafayette Street, and this cuts through his property.   He was told this would be considered.  Mr. Fraser said the nature of these problems be taken up with a representative of the town and the church.  The attorney for the church said there are alternatives his client would agree to.  Mr. Gardner would consider donating additional property to the church, in addition to piping the brook, with the assistance of the Borough.  Mr. Fraser told Mr. Goodman the town would not be held “at fault” for a further delay in this application and he agreed.  Mr. Swayze, Board Engineer, said if there is any change of the stream must be approved by the DEP.  A motion to adjourn this application to a future meeting was made by Mr. Peters, 2nd by Mr. Candarella.  All in favor.  Mr. Soos, as councilman in charge of planning and zoning, requested the church attorney contact him.

Application #32-05, Crincoli, 693 Fairfield Avenue, Block 4, Lot 163, a use variance (2-family in LC zone), and a setback variance.  Mr. Hale, attorney for the applicant, testified the present structure, a 2-family home, is in poor condition.  The new house will eliminate setback variances.  Mr. Soos pointed out this a new street and, in replacing utilities, may not be “dug up” for at least five years.  Mr. Fraser pointed out this is a Use Variance, and Councilman Soos must be recused.

  Sworn in:  Mr. James Watson, planner and land surveyor, Scotch Plains.  In response to Mr. Soos’ comment, he said it is easier to re-use the existing hookups.  If the sewer lateral is plugged, it could be cleaned out from the pit.

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This house will meet the bulk requirements of the Local/Commercial zone, but not for the Residential zone.  The existing lot is only 50’ deep.    Mr. Watson pointed out on the tax map that Fairfield Ave. is a special varied-zone street, including R-2, R-3, and LC areas. 

He said this has been a 2-family house since 1923.  His client is proposing a new 2-story two family dwelling.  The LC zone requirements are: a five foot front and side yard setback and a ten foot rear yard setback.  The applicant is proposing a sixteen foot front setback (for a 2-car garage). This will improve the parking situation. The new building is the same size as the old building.  The impervious coverage will be reduced from 53.6% to 39.4%.  In addition, there will be a grading change and the storm water drainage will be directed to the street.  He presented three maps of various aerial views.  Six of the eight lots are residential lots.

Mr. Candarella asked if the applicant should consider a single family house instead of a two-family, and anything over one year is considered an abandoned use.  The attorney said the dwelling has just been vacant since June and Mr. Crincoli purchased it in November, 2005.  Mr. Beninati asked if there is a “buffer zone” between the neighboring automotive repair facilities, as required in the zoning laws.  The applicant would agree to a privacy fence and plantings.  (Regarding the parking, he pointed out, presently a number of complaints exist regarding Mr. Crincoli’s construction materials and dump trucks illegally parked on the property and in the area.)  Mr. Corcione asked how much the grade would be raised.  The attorney said currently there is a one foot rise, and the land will be raised another foot. 

Sworn in:  Greg Waga, architect.  He said there will be a ground level entry through a two-car garage, and front steps on Fairfield Avenue.  The structure will be 23’ deep and 63’ wide, with a 26.5’ driveway.  Mr. Crincoli will rent out the house. 

Sworn in:  Mr. Peter Crincoli, owner.  He purchased the house about a year ago, and is aware it is illegal to park trucks in this area.  He agreed with Mr. Peters to place a fence close to the property line.  An existing side fence extends to the building that belongs to the repair shop.  He will remove the unsightly scaffolding and sand immediately.

Mr. Candarella pointed out this is a large house on an undersized lot and should be single family. Mr. Michitsch agreed.  Mr. Crincoli responded he purchased a two-family house and wants to replace it with another two-family house.  Mr. Peters reminded him the large basement is for storage only, and is concerned that the house has a potential to become a three-family.  Mr. Pantina pointed out that there are only two-family houses on that side of the street.   Mr. Crincoli said the lot shape is different from the neighboring houses.  The structure has 2,700 square feet (3,900 square footage with the basement plus garage) and is 29’ high.  The neighboring house is 15’ high.  The present structure is 2,400 square feet.  The attorney said his client will provide adequate barriers.

Mr. Peters said a denial would mean the present house would be repaired and not as aesthetic as the new proposal.

Mr. Peters made a motion to approve this application with barrier plantings in the rear and side, as well as trees in front. It is subject to the approval of the Board Engineer. Also, there will be no living quarters in the basement with a deed restriction to this effect.  With these conditions, the motion was 2nd by Mr. Corcione.

 

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As a use variance, at least five members voting affirmative are needed to pass this proposal.  All in favor:  Mr. Peters, Mr. O’Malley, Mr. Corcione, Mr. Beninati, and Mr. Michitsch.  Opposed:  Mr. Candarella and Mr. Cirillo.

Other Business:   A Formal Resolution regarding Air Conditioners

Mr. Peters suggested a maximum of 80 decibels at a 5’ property line be part of this proposal.  With this inclusion, Mr. Michitsch made a motion to accept this resolution, 2nd by Mr. O’Malley. All in favor:  Mr. O’Malley, Mr. Corcione, Mr. Beninati, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Cirillo, and Mr. Schielke.

Other comments:   Mr. Beninati expressed his regret that Mr. Don Fraser will not return as Board Attorney in 2007.  Don has been an asset to the Board, working very hard with him and the Recording Secretary, Janet.  We appreciate all of his efforts.  Mr. Cirillo also appreciated the help of Dons’ professional comments. 

The meeting adjourned at 9:35 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Janet M. Murphy,

Planning Board Recording Secretary



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