Planning Board Minutes from 06/23/2005



567 Boulevard

Kenilworth, N. J. 07033-1699


JUNE 23, 2005

The meeting began with the Pledge of Allegiance and an affirmation of the Open Public Meetings Act requirements. A motion to accept the May minutes was made by Mayor David, 2nd by Mr. Deluca, Jr.  A motion to pay the Attorney and the Secretary was made by Mr. Peters, 2nd by Mr. Deluca, Jr.  All in favor.  Present:  Mr. Clementi, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Beninati, Mr. David, Mr. Vitale, Mr. Peters, Mr. Deluca, Jr., Mr. Laudati, Mr. Cirillo, and Mr. Russo.  Absent:  Mr. Rappa, Mr. Soos, Mr. Schultz, and Mr. Candarella.

Communications:  Mr. Beninati read a letter from Sally McGeehan questioning the    chemicals and the processing of materials used at Fenevations.  Mr. Brian Froelich, (a principal of Fenevations) will call Ms. McGeehan.  Mr. Peters suggested the Board Attorney or the Board Secretary send a copy of Resolution #295 to Ms. McGeehan.

Resolutions:  Application #05-05, Trevor Ayr, 724 Clinton Avenue, Block 125, Lot 15.03, Resolution for Denial of Rear Yard Variance.  Mr. Don Fraser, Board Attorney, cited a correction in the date and wording.  All in favor:  Mr. Mr. Clementi, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Beninati, Mr. David, and Mr. Deluca, Jr.

Application #06-05,   Mr. Santacroce, 429 North 15th Street, Block 4, Lot 31, a Variance, Parking in the front yard setback.  Mr. Fraser cited a correction in the date and some type errors.  All in favor:  Mr. Clementi, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Beninati, Mr. Peters, Mr. Vitale, Mr. David, and Mr. Deluca, Jr.

Application # 295,  Flexi-Van/Fenevations, 251 Monroe Avenue, Block 24, Lot 1, Block 6, Lot 1.01,  Block 62, Lot 1, for a Site Plan.  Mr. Don Fraser cited a correction in the date and changes regarding the assurance of safe materials used and stored at Fenevations (in agreement with Flexi-van and the May minutes).  All in favor:  Mr. Clementi, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Peters, Mr. Vitale, Mr. David, and Mr. Deluca, Jr.

New Business:  Application #03-05, Mr. Frank Locorriere, 438 North 16th Street, Block 4, Lot 18, Variance for a front porch setback.  Sworn in:   Mr. Locorriere;  stated he wants to build a 7’ wide porch by 7’ deep (this includes 3 steps).  He also wants to include an overhang.  Mr. Fraser said a sketch and a variance will be required for this overhang, because it protrudes into the setback.  Approval of this application will be for a 7’ wide x 4’ deep (plus 3’ for the three steps).  The side yard variance is less than ½”. Since Mr. Locorriere needs the steps and porch for a Certificate of Occupancy, he must submit an application at another time for the overhang.

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 A motion to approve the Variance (without the overhang) was made by Mr. Vitale, 2nd by Mr. Peters.  All  in favor:  Mr. Clementi, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Beninati,  Mr. Peters, Mr. Vitale, Mr. David, and Mr. Deluca, Jr.  Application #03-05 is approved for Resolution.

Application # 04-05, Anthony Vaz, 228 North 20th Street, Block 41, Lot 9, for a Side Yard Variance.  Sworn in:  Anthony Vaz.  Mr. Tom DiGiorgio, architect, spoke for the applicant.  He installed a fireplace and needs the flu to extend 2’ into the 5’ side yard setback.  Mr. Michitsch suggested this could be a potential fire hazard to the neighbor.  Mr. Fraser said the chimney must be raised to comply with the zone code (from 8’ to 10’).  Sworn in:  Mr. Robert Meyer, Jr., 224 North 20th Street.  As a neighbor, he is concerned with the ashes hitting his roof.  Mr. Peters said screening around the chimney would be necessary for approval, and the chimney must be 2’ higher to comply with zone codes.  A motion to approve this application (providing it meets all fire and zone codes) was made by Mr. Beninati, 2nd by Mr. Deluca, Jr.  All in favor:  Mr. Clementi, Mr. Beninati, Mr. Peters, Mr. Vitale, Mr. Deluca, Jr., Mr. Russo.  Opposed:  Mr. Michitsch.

Application #04-05 is approved for Resolution.

Application #05-01, Antonio Perez/Beninati, RE: 246-250 North 8th Street, Block 23, Lots 4 & 5, for a Minor Subdivision.  Mr. Joseph Triarsi will represent Mr. Perez.  He stated the two lots are 60’ x 100’ each.  The lot line will run through an existing structure.  A requested “easement” will allow the existing older house to remain in place, to accommodate an existing tenant.  A new house will then be built on Lot 4.  The present tenant is an elderly woman and she must re-locate within a reasonable amount of time.  There is no lease.  The easement will be abated when the house is taken down.  Sworn in:  Mike Pronesti, 425 Pompton Avenue, Cedar Grove, a surveyor.  He said this is a Minor Subdivision.  The existing lot is 120’ x 100’, and the proposed lots will be two 60’ x 100’.  Mr. Tango stated three variances are needed:  a side-yard setback variance for both lots, a front yard setback variance for the new lot line, and an “encroachment easement”.  If this application is approved, Mr. Beninati will give the deed to Mr. Perez for the left lot.  Mr. Beninati will retain the right lot.  Mr. Don Fraser stated the sub-division cannot be granted without a variance for a side yard setback.  Mr. Triarsi would like to carry this application for a month, during which time he will amend the application to show the required variance requests.  A denial letter is required from the Zoning Officer, and this application must be re-noticed.  A motion to carry this to the July 28 meeting was made, all were in favor.

Application #292 Rev 1, Madden Properties, RE: 246-250 North 8th Street, Block 159, Lots 15 & 16, a Subdivision to convert a warehouse lot (in an Industrial zone) into four 50’ x 100’ single family house lots. Sworn in:  Mr. Louis Madden, 48 Kipling Avenue, Springfield.  He stated each house will have four bedrooms and one kitchen.  Three of the 2,000 sq. ft. (living area) houses will have a 2-car garage, vinyl siding, and a basement.  The fourth (smaller) house will be built on a slab and will have a 1-car garage.  The fourth house requires a variance because it is a corner lot.  The present site is a warehouse located on a residential street with single-family homes.  All of the houses will face Woodland Avenue, and all have a 25’ front setback.  The fourth house (a corner lot) will have a 15’ setback.  Mr. Michitsch suggested these proposed houses may not conform to the character of the existing homes. Mr. O’Brien said the average distance between neighboring homes is about 27’.

Page 3 --   Sworn in:  Anthony Gallerano, 320 North Avenue East, Cranford (architect). He said three houses will be 38’ wide.  There are some smaller and some larger homes in the area.  The current zone line excludes lots 15 & 16 in the “R-2” (residential) zone.  There may have been an existing warehouse in those lots when this street was zoned.  If these lots were zoned as R-2, no variances would be needed.  Presently, Market Street, (an “I” zone) now requires a 25’ corner setback.  “Seepage pits” provide some storm water run-off.  Discharge in the rear yard will run-off onto Market Street.  This is subject to approval of the E.P.A.  Mr. Gallerano, as a licensed planner, said Woodland Avenue is predominantly residential, and the two lots that were zoned as Industrial are out of character.  The houses would be an improvement to this neighborhood, with no negative impact on the Master Plan.  This proposal has DEP approval on the abandonment of the warehouse.  Mr. O’Brien, Board Planner, stated the back of the houses will face Commercial property.  The first two houses (from the corner) will face the blank side wall of the Knights of Columbus hall.  Sworn in:  Mr. Thomas Ramos, 663 Newark Avenue (a licensed Real Estate agent).  He agrees that the street is predominantly residential, and the value of the surrounding houses should appreciate with approval of this application.  The size of the houses will be about 2,000 sq. ft. (not including the garage and basement areas).  Mr. Tango, Board Engineer, suggested the application, if approved, should include a “buffer” on the side and rear of the houses (the adjacent commercial properties) and to pave the portion that faces Woodland Avenue.   Sworn in:  Mr. Kevin O’Brien.  He displayed a photo board (B-1) showing the back of the proposed houses.  They will face a large black industrial building. To soften this effect, there should be a 6’ high board-on-board buffer fence and larger trees.  He suggested building four new homes in the proposed lot will have a “crowding” effect. 

Sworn in:  Tom and Danielle Nora, 747 Woodland Avenue.  He is concerned about drainage and if the sewers can handle the new house water run-off.  He wants to be assured the products used will be UL listed.  Mrs. Nora likes the factories as neighbors.  Sworn in:  Larry Hrynkiewicz, 744 Woodland Avenue.  He lived 28 years on Woodland Avenue.  He is concerned about the increased parking, that three houses (not four) would be better.  Mr. Triarsi said the Buffer would not be an issue.  Mr. Tango’s requests will be a condition of the resolution.  The building issues will meet the codes.  Five affirmative votes will be required, since this is a use variance, bulk variance, and a sub-division.  In motion to approve this application was made by Mr. Vitale, 2nd by Mr. Laudati.  All in favor:  Mr. Clementi, Mr. Michitsch, Mr. Peters, Mr. Vitale, Mr. Laudati.  Opposed:  Mr. Deluca, Jr. and Mr. Cirillo.  Mr. Beninati and Mr. David were recused.  Application #292-Rev 1 is approved for Resolution.

Other BusinessA Special Meeting on July 7 will be held to discuss some Proposed Ordinances.  Mr. Soos and the two members of his committee should attend.

Mr. David suggested it may not be appropriate to “swear in” the public who are only making comments, not testimony.  Mr. Fraser and Mr. O’Brien, who have attended meetings in other towns, stated all who testify are sworn in (including the public, Board Planner, Board Engineer, etc.) to test the veracity of what they say. 

AdjournmentA motion to adjourn was made at 10:20 p.m.  All in favor.

Respectfully submitted,

Janet M. Murphy, Recording Secretary

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