Board of Zoning Appeals/City Planning Commission, June 4, 2019

July 5th, 2019  |  Published in Observer Reports

Members Present: David Weiss, mayor and chair; Rob Zimmerman, council member; John J. Boyle and Joanna Ganning, citizen members

Others Present: William M. Ondrey Gruber, director of law; Joyce Braverman, director of planning; Dan Feinstein, senior planner

The agenda for this meeting may be found here:

The meeting was recorded and the audio is available here:

Mayor Weiss called the meeting to order at 7 p.m.

The minutes of the May 7, 2019, meeting were approved unanimously with typographical corrections only and are available here:

Board of Zoning Appeals

Shaw Residence, 14206 South Woodland Road

Continuation of a public hearing on the request of Trevor and Callie Shaw, 14206 South Woodland Road, for a variance to the height and setback requirements for front-yard fences. The Shaw property (two lots) extends from South Woodland Road through to Van Aken Boulevard. The request was continued at the March 5, 2019, meeting. The applicant has installed a 6-foot-tall wood board-on-board fence, but the maximum permitted height for a front yard fence is 3 feet. The fence is set back 15 feet from the Van Aken Boulevard property line, but a 33-foot setback is required for a fence in the front yard of Van Aken Boulevard. The applicant now proposes 15 arborvitae bushes, staining the fence dark brown, and maintaining the existing landscaping of bushes and trees to soften the view of the fence from Van Aken Boulevard. There are six “through” lots in the city, so this is an unusual property situation and there are precedents for approval. Dr. Ganning asked what would happen were the property to be sold as two lots. Mr. Gruber related that the fence would have to be removed but the landscaping could stay. Staff supports approval of the two variances.

There were no comments or questions during the public hearing and the board voted unanimously to approve with the condition that the landscaping stay.

Supporting documents are here:

Cleveland Restoration Society Property, 18520 Winslow Road

Public hearing on the request of Margaret Lann, Cleveland Restoration Society, 18520 Winslow Road, for a variance to the garage regulations in order to construct a two-car garage at a two-family house. The applicant, the Great Garage Co., proposes to construct a new two-car garage and a parking pad in the rear yard at this two-family house, but code requires a three-car garage for such houses. The existing two-car garage, which faces sideways, is a Housing Inspection violation and requires demolition. The new garage will be located in the rear corner of the lot facing the street—a code-conforming location. The Architectural Board has reviewed the plans for the new garage. Staff supports approval of the variance, especially since there are precedents.

There were no comments or questions during the public hearing and the board voted unanimously to approve the variance.

Supporting documents are here:

Michael and Katherine Lee, 2932 West Park Boulevard: Public hearing withdrawn.

City Planning Commission

Van Aken BC, LLC, 3386 Tuttle Road

Public hearing on the request of Mackenzie Makepeace, RMS Investment Corp., on behalf of Van Aken BC, LLC, for a Conditional Use Permit for a wine bar. The applicant, Jason Russell, general manager of the Van Aken District, proposes to establish a wine bar on the upper floor of the B-1 building in the Van Aken District. The space is located on the second floor and rooftop of the building over the Sawyer Restaurant. The rooftop bar space will accommodate approximately 150 patrons, both inside and out, and serve alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks; food will be available through Sawyers Restaurant. A wine bar requires a Conditional Use Permit in the CM Commercial Mixed Use zoning district. Council confirmation of such a permit is also required. Staff supports approval with certain conditions that include operating hours, compliance with the city noise ordinance and state liquor permit requirements, and a review after six months.

There were no comments or questions during the public hearing and board voted unanimously to approve the variance.

Supporting documents are here:

City of Shaker Heights, Zoning Text Amendment

An unusual referral by City Council to the City Planning Commission for further study to amendments to the zoning ordinance text regarding the regulations for Child Day Care Homes, Types A and B. Child Day Care Homes are permanent residences in which child day care is provided. Revisions are proposed concerning the ownership of the property of Type A homes: whether to include an additional condition that Type A homes be owned by those who provide the service.

During the public hearing, which is not required for such actions, eight residents spoke to the topic, both for and against requiring such homes to be owner-occupied (about half and half). One gentleman, while not in favor of renters as day-care providers, thought instituting such a regulation would be discriminatory and the top of a slippery slope in regulating renters; after all, Shaker Heights is not a home-owners association. Mayor Weiss told the panel they could either take action to recommend the condition that Type A Day Care Homes be owner-occupied or leave it as is. Mr. Zimmerman assured those present that he will present the points they made as accurately as possible at the third hearing of the issue during the regular City Council meeting on June 24, but also told them they would have an opportunity then to voice their opinions again. Then both Dr. Ganning and Mr. Boyle stated that they would not support such a condition as it would be discriminatory.

Supporting documents are here:

The meeting was adjourned at 8 p.m. The next meeting is July 2, 2019, at 7 p.m.

Barbara Bradley, observer

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