Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Cleveland Planning Commission Report – Friday, February 3, 2006

Better late then never, right? I thought last semester was intense, whew… I have lot of reading to do. Anyway…

Call to order – 9:06 AM

Roll Call –

Bob Brown
Tony Coyne
Joe Cimperman
Lillian Kuri
Gloria Jean Pinkney

David Bowen
Larry Lumpkin
Rev. S. Small

Mandatory Referrals (All approved)

  1. Ordinance #2210-05: City property on 5158 Broadway Avenue sold to Dr. Javier Lopez. Dr. Lopez says he will occupy 50% of the property and lease the other portion out. He also has plans for a second phase.
  2. Ordinance #119-06: The sale of Land Reutilization Program property located on Cedar Avenue, between East 100th and 101st Streets to Fairfax Renaissance Development Corporation. This land is for the Star Research Building that was conceptually approved by the commission last December. It was noted the Cleveland Clinic is still not on board with the developer; however, they said they do not need the Clinic in order to move forward. Good news.
  3. Ordinance #161-06: Amend a previously passed ordinance passed on October 31, 2005 regarding building height requirements within the Midtown Mixed Use District.

Summary Calendar (All approved)

  1. Ordinance #115-06: Authorized the sale of Land Reutilization Program property on East 68th Street to Juanmea Charnuse Harris.
  2. Ordinance #116-06: Authorized the sale of Land Reutilization Program property on Whittier Avenue to Angela Bennett.
  3. Ordinance #118-06: Authorized the sale of Land Reutilization Program property on St. Clair Avenue to Ronda J. Thompson.
  4. Ordinance #22-06: To vacate a portion of Alum Court
  5. Ordinance #17-06: To vacate a portion of the 1st un-named Alley, west of Pearl Road from Krather Road to its northern terminus.

Lot Split (Ward 12)
7732 Spafford Road

What should have been a routine approval was dragged on for nearly an hour. I am not going to get all of this correct, but I will try. The property either currently has or is proposed to have four units on it: three single-family and one multi-family – none of which would be owner occupied. Partly because of this and with issues regarding the legality of the current driveway ribbon (in addition to the lack of support from the local councilman) the commission did not approve the lot split.
It was suggested the owner, who was not present, might consider tearing one of the houses down and place (legal) driveway with a nice garage and carriage house in its place.

Quote of the day – Tony Coyne:

“Never let the market dictate a good planning decision.”

Buckeye Road Design Review, BR 2006-01

2780 East 116th Street, Gas Station, Hanini Sub and Corned Beef – Demolition and Reconstruction

This should have also been a relatively simple approval; however, the owner of the proposed gas station did not take well to the local development corp. committee’s comments about the project and instead of coming back to them with improvements, they went straight to the commission (with said improvements… or at least some of the).

What is planned is to tear down the existing structure and have it replaced with a new one. What was an issue had to do with landscaping and certain design elements (the business is located near Shaker Square and Metro Hospital), both of which were addressed.

In the end, the commission approved the plan with a condition that the existing guardrail along an adjacent side street is taken down and in its place, a decorative black aluminum fence along the entire street edge.

Mt. Pleasant BRD, Confirmation (approved)
Chandra Williams

Midtown Design Review, M2006-001 (approved)
BRD, Ward 7

4600 Euclid Avenue, New construction of 3-story office building & parking garage renovation, seeking full approval

Paul Volpe of City Architecture gave this presentation. Remember the multi-alarm fire at this location last April? (photo by Mike Whitiker, Firehouse.com) Well, a design has been submitted for a new office building to be built in that location. If you cannot picture the location, it is next to the Agora and across the street from the RTA Garage. Attempts to post the rendering were unfruitful. It will be a very nice addition to the street and will fit in well with the Euclid Corridor.

Design Review, DRC 06-004, (approved)

Wards 17 and 14
Stockyard Homes, LP., Lease Purchase Properties, Scattered Site Single-Family Houses

18 units of housing to be built on empty lots throughout the Stockyards Neighborhood. Three differmet models will be available.

Director’s Report (none)

Ed Hauser

At the January 6 Planning Commission meeting, Ed Hauser was cut short at the end of the meeting (regarding the Innerbelt Project) due to a previously scheduled flu shot event being held in the same room. Tony Coyne told Ed he could come back at another time to address the commission.

Today was his day. What follows are some of the comments made by some of the Commission members during this time.

Cimperman -
*Paul Alsenas brought the bridge alignment issue to the public’s attention.
*ODOT recently was part of a meeting with numerous politicians (not Paul Alsenas) and all came intoconsensus regarding the dropping of the southern alignment
*The Economic Development study still has not been done
*Perhaps we should invite Paul Alsenas to help with the economic development portion
*Mayor Jackson
wants all trench issues resolved before he endorses the alignment
*Avon Commons, Rockside and Chagrin Highlands would not exist without the current rampage system in place.

*He disagreed with Cimperman stating the creation of these places were circumstantial

*ODOT Director Proctor told Mayor Jackson, “I just don’t understand the people of Cleveland.” *Cimperman then stated (to commission) He’s right, he does not understand us.
*All this time ODOT had been asking for us to compromise on very aspects of the freeway design repeatedly. We have been compromising for 5 ½ years.
*There are some major problems ahead with this project. Attention has been brought to the consultants and ODOT regarding the failing bulkheads on the Cuyahoga River – they never thought about it; Homeland Security – they never thought about that either.

*There was a 50 person scoping committee with no one person or agency being held accountable

*The scoping Committee was designed to fail
*In June of 2004, ODOT said they would include community development with the project. *Sometime between then and June of 2005, something happened where they decided not to address it.
*There is a political feeling that we (Cleveland) will be ok with whatever is done with the trench because of the all of the work that was accomplished with the West Shoreway
*“You think they (ODOT) doesn’t get it… I think they do get it and are purposely avoiding it.”


guv said...


nice work with this post. sounds like quite an intense meeting. odot certainly needs to be held accountable for their (in)action

did the meeting end with the odot discussion? does this mean that the entire plan has yet to be approved and that only the bridge is a done deal?

thanks for the reporting - the attendance itself is news. are planning commission members paid?

oh and one last thing. in regards to odot, do you have any idea where in ohio law it states that redistributions from the federal gas tax must be used for road construction?

Mr. Good Day said...

Scott, great reporting! I never have enough time in the week to make it to these. I know you don't either, which makes your attendance all that much more impressive!

Planning Commission members, to my knowledge, are paid. In the past, they weren't, but that's changed.

I'm glad to hear the response of some of the planners/council people on the Commission to ODOT's questionable and costly work. It reinforces much of what I've observed. However, are we to believe that the City is going to actually show a backbone here?