Board Meeting Minutes 5/7/12

Meeting of May 7, 2012

 

PRESENT: Matt Ruben, President; Don Phillips, Vice-President; John Braxton, Treasurer; Janet Finegar, Secretary; Rick Angeli; Larry Freedman; Irene Lambrou; Katrina Mansfield; Ken Mitchell; Steve Richman; Anne Waginger.

ABSENT: Fernando Benavides, Erika Goldberg, Barbara Saverino, Josh Upin

The meeting was called to order by the President at  7:07 p.m. Motion: By Katrina Mansfield, seconded by Ken Mitchell:To approve the minutes of the April Board meeting as presented.”  Passed 9-0-0

 

Presidents Report:

1. PLANNING AND POLICY-RELATED ISSUES

  • Mission – We will be resuming the mission process, after a long hiatus. We have had a draft neighborhood survey prepared (the first major step), and Don has volunteered to head up this initiative over the next several months.
  • Casinos – The PA House passed a bill to make the remaining casino license, originally designated for Philadelphia, eligible to be bid out statewide. The PA Senate has not yet acted on this; there is word that the Senate might want to leave the license dormant.
  • Central Delaware Master Plan – CDAG continues to meet with the Planning Commission regarding the overlay. Currently a major issue in question is how strong and specific the requirements will be to ensure that certain streets cut through to the riverfront.
  • Zoning Code Commission – The second (and current) draft zoning overlay for the Central Delaware Waterfront is available for public review at www.zoningmatters.org.

2. FUNDRAISING/FINANCES/ADMINISTRATION

  • Administration – I had a very productive meeting with Anne, Lara, and Monika about office issues and office-board communication. Details at our board meeting.
  • Budget and Finances – As presumptive Treasurer beginning May 31, Steve Richman has met with Lara about Quickbooks, and has set a goal of getting the FY2013 budget to the board for a vote at the September board meeting.
  • Events – A reminder that the Night Market is Thursday, May 24, 7-11PM. Second St. will be closed from Germantown to Spring Garden from 4PM to about midnight adjacent side streets might see some closures as well.
  • Spring Garden Greenway – We are still awaiting word from DRWC about when their revised RFP is going out for work on the underpass.
  • Bylaws – At a the April General Membership meeting, members voted to change the Bylaws to eliminate Presidential and VP term limits; give the Board latitude to change the dates of the NLNA’s fiscal year; allow the NLNA to make electronic payments; and allow the Board to determine payment-authorization procedures for expenses of $200 or less. Some votes were unanimous; others passed with a small number (one, two or three) of votes in the negative. The Election Committee announced the numbers and has them for any board member who inquires.

3. DEVELOPMENT ISSUES AND DEVELOPER RELATIONS

  • Tower Investments – Press reports indicate that Bart Blatstein is seeking investors for part or all of the Schmidt’s and Piazza properties. Such investors might or might not obtain a controlling interest in the properties. Details at our meeting.
  • On May 5 and 6, the Piazza hosted two major events. Previous issues with bathroom facilities, drunken patrons, and trash appear to have been handled well this time around. The May 5 event, a radio 104.5 “block party,” did generate noise complaints. The May 6 event, the Equality Forum’s annual SundayOUT! event, was loud but not as loud and did not generate any complaints of which I am aware.
  • Finnegan’s Wake – Larry and I have a meeting with them the morning after our board meeting, to again discuss possible solutions to the Bodine Street issue. Councilman Squilla also is working on getting the Water Dept. involved (via the infrastructure work they are doing throughout the city, improving streetscapes for stormwater management), as well as Democratic City Committee (which borders the opposite side of Bodine from Finnegan’s), and the Penn Treaty SSD.
  • Club Aura – This club is still generating complaints. The adjacent neighbor has moved out the neighborhood. Neighbors continue to file reports with PA Liquor Enforcement. The neighbors,  Larry and I remain unsatisfied with the situation. Further action might be taken by PA enforcement officials after sufficient complaint reports are made.

4. OUTREACH/EVENTS/GENERAL MEETINGS

  • General Meetings – Please notify me of any agenda items or ideas for the June GM. I have been trying to get Council President Darrell Clarke to come, but was told he could not make April or May. I will try again for June.

5. COMMUNICATION AND PUBLICITY

  • Internet – The email list has surpassed 1,750. I would like volunteers for our Twitter account.
  • Web site – As you know, handing off responsibility for the design and maintenance of the web site was one of my conditions for accepting the nomination for President the year. Katrina has reaffirmed her role in heading this up and will continue to work with Micah Gold-Markel on taking the new web site live.

6. OTHER ITEMS

  • Board Polls – Ratification of any online or online board polls since last month’s board meeting.

 

Treasurer’s Report: No report. Motion: By Katrina Mansfield, seconded by Irene Lambrou. To table the Treasurer’s Report.”  Passed 10-0-0

 

Business Association Liaison, Clean and Green, Education, Environment, Membership, Neighborhood Plan, Operations, Townwatch, Recycling, and Urban Design Committees: No reports.

 

 

Community Center Committee Report – Larry Freedman

Larry reported that all zoning issues have been resolved and that we are waiting on a permit, but are otherwise ready to begin construction on the garage project.

 

Election Committee – Irene Lambrou:

  • We have 6 eligible candidates for 6 empty at-large seats,  and one candidate each for President & Treasurer, shown below. EC is collecting statements from the candidates and we’ll plan to publish the statements in the email listserve and the Star. We need the statements by May 11 at the latest to meet the Star’s deadline, and the bylaws requires.
  • Steve’s anticipated move from at-large director to Treasurer will mean we have one open at-large seat as of the May 31 election.
  • EC will meet again on May 14.

 

Liberty Lands Committee Report – Janet Finegar:

Activities during April:

  • New bathroom: The “bathroom shed” is in place and in action. We’ve had about 20 people sign up for the yearly use already and neighbor Ellyn Schatz has agreed to be the organizer of the combination listserv. Kenny Grono donated and installed a solar light. We’re planning to put a trellis on the American Street side and grow a vine up it to deter graffiti. Now it’s a matter of seeing how things go!
  • The “firepit” has officially become the fire planter, but someone is still pulling rocks together to have small fires at the park in a similar location. We haven’t seen the person, just the campfire remains.
  • Barbara put in an activities fund grant application for the park’s festivals and movies. Thank you, Barbara!
  • Josh is working on the movie schedule for this summer. Sponsorship from the Philadelphia Film Society fell through for this year, but we still have one movie (Wizard of Oz in the final slot) paid for by PHS.
  • Weeding club continues, every Saturday from 9-11. Drop-in volunteers always welcome, coffee and (usually) donuts provided.
  • The April 14 workday was well attended and we got most of the trees weeded and mulched, the various rubble piles reduced, and a worrisome possible sinkhole in the garden taken care of (thanks, Tim and Pat McDonald!)
  • The new gardens on Laurel are progressing slowly, since Oron has to get the wall repaired before volunteers can work in the space, and that’s turning out to be more complicated than we thought. However, a neighbor got funding to do a vertical garden on the OTHER wall in that space and she should be starting that project soon. Liz and Oron continue to work on getting the full space usable.

Activities for May:

  • May 12: Love Your Park workday,  May 25 youth talent show organized by ART Factory (Norris Square), June 9 Spring music festival

 

Zoning Committee Report – Larry Freedman:

 

Motion: By Rick Angeli, seconded by Katrina Mansfield: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of972-76 N. Leithgow St, i.e.: ‘We support two family dwellings with a back yard depth of 9 feet for conventional compliance for southern house and 10 ft on the northern house. Roof deck set back should comply with 8 foot set back requirement. Please present this project to UDC. Please provide a signed final copy of the plans and a copy of the refusal (s) prior to receiving a letter of support.'”

Passed 10-0-0

 

Motion: By Steve Richman, seconded by Katrina Mansfield: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 413 Fairmount Ave C1, i.e.: ‘We will support the proposed usage of a yoga studio and 2 apartments for this property with the following provisos. We approve hours no earlier than 7 am and no later than 10 pm. No sound should penetrate from the studio to the neighboring properties or across the street. Reduce the size of the deck with an 8 foot set back from the rear of the building. Please take this project to the UDC committee for review.  Please submit final signed design plans and a copy of the refusal(s) before a letter of support is issued.'”

Passed 10-0-0

 

Motion: By Katrina Mansfield, seconded by Rick Angeli: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 1120-22 North 3rd St, i.e.: ‘Please return to the zoning committee with plans for the 3rd Street house with a curb cut no wider than the existing curb cut. Rear yards should conform to 9 ft depth requirement for all homes.  Please review the plans with the UDC committee.'”

Passed 10-0-0

 

Motion: By Steve Richman, seconded by Katrina Mansfield: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 834 North 4th Street, i.e.: ‘We support the project for the development as proposed. We approve residential-friendly C2 uses only for the ground floor commercial space. Please provide a copy of the refusal and a signed and dated set of plans before a letter of support is issued.'”

Passed 10-0-0

 

Motion: By Steve Richman, seconded by John Braxton: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 720 North 4th Street, i.e.: ‘We support the project as presented. We would like the utility meters hidden.  Please discuss with the UDC. Please provide a copy of the refusal and a signed and dated set of plans before a letter of support is issued.'”

Passed 10-0-0

 

Motion: By Katrina Mansfield, seconded by John Braxton: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 612 N. 2nd St., i.e.: ‘We support the new height of 42 feet. 4th floor rear should be cut back by 11 feet.  Side wall of light well should be removed.  Please take the project to UDC for review and return to the Zoning Committee with final plans.'”

Passed 10-0-0

 

Motion: By Katrina Mansfield, seconded by Anne Waginger: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 980-82 N 2nd St., i.e.: ‘We support this project with the removal of the 4th floor rear unit. All units should have no more than 3 bedrooms. Please return to the Zoning Committee with final plans.'”

Passed 7-0-3

 

Motion: By Janet Finegar, seconded by John Braxton: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 801 N. 2nd St., i.e.: ‘To ask the applicant to reduce overall building height by 5’ and to maintain 1:1 parking.'”

Passed 10-0-0

Zoning Committee Minutes from 4/30/12

972-76 N. Leithgow St – Elizabeth Casey – R10A Return visit with a proposal to build two single family dwellings.  Requested increase in rear yard. Garages on Leithgow St.  One is 45’ deep, other 50’ deep.  Don’t meet 30% open space.  50 ft lot yeard changed to 10’ deep, but still want 8’ back yard for 972 (45’ lot).  Of 29 lots on Leithgow, 12 are less than 10’ for rear yard.  Lots behind are open, not built.  Bay projection has been reduced to 2 foot.  Street department has signed off on street to garage.  Turning radius into garage limits placement choice of front door.
Discussion: Hearing on May 16th.  UDC meeting on 15th.  Decks not addressed?  Wasn’t in the previous motion.  No dimensions on set back on plans, or roof deck called out.  160’ of 900 sf for back yard proposed for shortfall.  (17%?)  Need certificate to get parking.  
Motion (Charlie) 2nd (Jonathan) : We support two family dwellings with a back yard depth of 9 feet for conventional compliance for southern house and 10 ft on the northern house.  Roof deck set back should comply with 8 foot set back requirement.  Please present this project to UDC.  Please provide a signed final copy of the plans and a copy of the refusal (s) prior to receiving a letter of support.   Vote: 6-0-0

413 Fairmount Ave C1 – Keira Winters – C1 Proposal for 1st floor yoga studio & office & 2 residential units 2nd & 3rd floor. (Former Wilson Funeral Home).  C1 allows 1 living unit – want to increase to 2 due to size of building.  Redo first floor for ADA requirements.  Teaching yoga in public schools business + classes.  Added 2nd & 3rd floor wood frame design will cantilever over 1’4” side yard.   Open space  reduced to 22% due to cantilever (partial cover but not much).  Ground floor will remain open.  Two small decks off each apartment.  Roof deck with spiral stair access from 3rd floor.  Mean height of 38 feet to top of rail which is below main roof in front.  Store front windows will be opened up to higher ceiling height with drop ceiling removed.  Yoga allowed in C2 but not C1, so that will be one of the refusals.  Max class size 15-20 people (safe number).  2-3 morning classes, one each on sat/sun.  No classes after 8 pm.  Hours in general: 10 am – 8:30/9:00 pm.  Passage way space recommended to have openings for light for occupants.  Property behind ends at back of this property.  Side decks go to property line.
Discussion: 7 am – 10 pm proposed for hours open envelope, but may not use all to start.  Depends on audience.  Variance would be for a yoga studio in C1.   
Motion (Joe); 2nd (Jonathan):  We will support the proposed usage of a yoga studio and 2 apartments for this property with the following provisios.  We approve hours no earlier than 7 am and no later than 10 pm.   No sound should penetrate from the studio to the neighboring properties or across the street.  Reduce the size of the deck with an 8 foot set back from the rear of the building.  Please take this project to the UDC committee for review.   Please submit final signed design plans and a copy of the refusal(s) before a letter of support is issued.  Vote: 6-0-1

1120-22 North 3rd St (to Galloway St) – R10A – Jim Heisler Proposal for three single family dwellings with parking.  (George & Cambridge) Demolish 2 one story garages and erect new buildings.  3rd street has existing oversized curb cut.  Proposing 2 car ports for turning radius (no garage doors).  Both have roof decks.  Step 3rd floor back.  3rd street facades same height of adjacent architecture.   5 ft wide shared easement so properties have access to 3rd street and for PGW access.  1st floor recessed about 3 ft to aid with parking situation.  Roof deck set back 6 ft off Galloway street.  Rear yard is smaller & one of the refusals.  Parapet wall will be flush with neighboring roof heights.  Have support letter from the neighbors on either side.  They couldn’t attend.  Roof decks of pair of houses accessible from interior stair. Facades on 3rd street have no windows on ground floor.  Linear window planned for side of door plus window on door (eyes on the street).
Discussion: 3rd street home doesn’t need double parking.  Reduce curb cut to one, or leave the same, not enlarge to 2 curb cuts.  Elevator placement wastes a lot of space. Rear yards are too small. Motion (Joe); 2nd (Jonathan):  Please return to the zoning committee with plans for the 3rd Street house with a curb cut no wider than the existing curb cut. Rear yards should conform to 9 ft depth requirement for all homes.  Please review the plans with the UDC committee.  Vote: 7-0-0

834 North 4th Street, – L4 – Roland Kasis Return visit to discuss 4th Street property.  Previous motion said too tall & dense + flip balconies away from adjacent property.  Garage is being demolished.  Will be lowering ground floor height from 16’ 8” to 12’ 6”.  Ok with lowering the building, but need 3 units, not 2 for viability plus commercial space.  No parking spaces provided.  Curb cut is being removed so will one more space on the street.  Every other floor is a 10’6” floor height, with 12’6” on the ground floor.  22 ft width of building.  2 bedrooms, 2 bath, LR, elevator.  Front decks out 18”, with front panel total extended just under 4 ft.
Discussion: Gives back 1½ parking space to street.  On a technical level it is L4 which allows for 60 feet and no parking, but no residential.   Is the reason not to support due to no parking provided.  Good that there is commercial space, and this builder is good about using quality materials and construction.
Motion:  (Joe); 2nd (Tim):  We support the project for the development as proposed.  We approve residential-friendly C2 uses only for the ground floor commercial space.  Please provide a copy of the refusal and a signed and dated set of plans before a letter of support is issued.  Vote: 7-0-0

720 North 4th Street, L4 – Alex Duller Return visit with a proposal for 5 single family dwellings with parking.  Across from Honey’s.  Three homes on 3rd (rectangles, 2800-300 sf) have interior courtyard w parking.  Pair of houses on 4th (cube), w parking in courtyard.  Southern most house still has a curb cut on 4th st.  Net zero homes w geothermal and solar.  Large open floors, 13ft ceilings, roof decks, balconies.  Max height of solar panels is about 48 ft = same or slightly smaller than 4th & Olive house approved last year.   How do you get out of parking space.  Flip Lot A to give more room to park? Cube homes have 11’ on ground floor.  Rectangular homes have decks only for open space, plus the parking area.  Demolition of south wall, support roof, then rest by end of June.
Discussion: Work with George and Wendy next door re construction.
Motion (Jonathan) 2nd (Sue):  We support the project as presented.  We would like the utility meters hidden.  Please discuss with the UDC.  Please provide a copy of the refusal and a signed and dated set of plans before a letter of support is issued.   Vote: 7-0-0

5/1/2012

612 N. 2nd St – Kevin O’Neil – C2 – return visit with a proposal for a mixed use building  18’ x 105’ deep, 1890 sf, 4-story w first floor commercial, 15 x 18 rear yard.  Basement is for storage.  1st level apt is 18’ x 800’. 2 bi-levels are 1000 sf & 1200 sf.  Roof terrace is 200 sf.  Footprint is smaller than 2006 proposal.  Refusal is for 4th story & 45 feet (35 limit), 1 to 1 parking (need 3, providing 2).  Relocated pilot house and now slopes away from the front.  Decreased length of building 86’ to 76’ (75% lot coverage).  Roof height lowered from 45 ft to 42 feet. Light well is inner opening within the exterior wall.  No widows on north side of property.
Discussion: 8 ft ceiling perhaps too low if make them shorten the building?  Shorten a few feet (out of the front unit?).  Maybe makes no difference.   Shorten 4th floor rear?  Can you do without the exterior wall with the light well?  Would give both the new building and the existing adjacent building more light and air.  Can the length of the building be shortened?  As designed extends 11 ft beyond adjacent bldg.  How will dig basement without compromising structure next door?  Need to understand the impact of construction on the parking area for tenants (2).  Must assume will not block.
Motion (Charlie); 2nd (Ira):  We support the new height of 42 feet.  4th floor rear should be cut back by 11 feet.  Side wall of light well should be removed.  Please take the project to UDC for review and return to the zoning committee with final plans.    Vote: 9-0-0

980-82 N 2nd St – Kevin O’Neil – C2 – Return visit with a proposal for a mixed use building   2 vacant lots across from piazza.  Consolidating.  27’ x 96’ deep.  Three story building. 84’ deep x 96’ w 12’ rear yard depth.  Commercial on first floor front 745 sf.  Residential unit in the back.  Two terraces. Height 35’ with addl 9’ pilot house. No parking proposed due to no street frontage in rear and density on 2nd st.  Changes: Rear moved from 84’ to 74’ (30% required  – 67.2’ would be 30%).  5 total units to 4 units (1 commercial, 3 residential.)  Apartments about 1000 sf each.  First floor is ADA (required for 4 residential units).  Total width is 26’ 8”.  Width 13’ 4” each.  No refusal yet, but will get one for no on-site parking.
Discussion: Still too many apartments?  Should be 3.  Suggest remove 3rd fl rear, or all commercial on ground floor, roof deck in back.  Technically if didn’t combine lots might get this.  If combined unit 2 & 3 for bi-level.  Neighbor prefers 70% open space to not extend past his building. Yard would be 29 x 27 if 30% open space.   Light well is 100 sf = 2.8 sf of depth short of 30%. All units should be no more than 3 bedrooms (4 bedrooms is illegal = boarding house)
Motion (Joe), 2nd (Ira):  We support this project with the removal of the 4th floor rear unit.  All units should have no more than 3 bedrooms.  Please return to the zoning committee with final plans.  Vote: 6-3-0

New Market St. between Poplar & Laurel – A forum to discuss potential uses for this PennDOT piece of land abutting I-95. Dog park?  Parking? Green space?  Discussion:  Will get reduced with installation of sound wall.  Eventually be widening I-95 slightly with new decking (no new lanes, but safety lanes will add width).  Should ask for sound wall now.  Ideas:

1)Parking lot with an open space at the tight end where cars will not fit and where there are large trees.  Residential monthly fee.

2) Giant green space with fence down. Would prevent loose dogs.

3) Parking under 95? Who would maintain/shovel snow/etc for the parking?

4) Parking lot – not enough street spots. Neighbor across the street doesn’t want dog park = smelly.

5) Neighbors could get together to arrange for permit parking for timed parking for residents only.

6) Not interested in the dog park.  Prefer open green space.  Can park now the entire length of the parking (no curb cuts now).  Entrance/exit  would have to be on New Market.  Already a raceway and parking would encourage more cars coming in.

7) Angled parking a possibility?  Would lose 5 ft of park and add more spaces.

8) People that live there would be the only ones to use the parking (wouldn’t turn into a raceway).  Parking or combo of parking/green.

9)  No dog park please.  Waste of space.   Wed-Sun the club people take over the neighborhood. Like the idea of permits.  Let’s try to make everyone happy.  Need 50% of signatures of people on the block.

10)  Needs to be a comprehensive plan for parking in the area to address the shortage of parking.  Negotiate with PennDOT under I-95.  Capital investment of creating a parking lot must be covered, including: 20% parking tax to the city for income from a parking lot, paving, insurance, lighting, video surveillance.

Straw poll

801 N. 2nd St – G2 – Chris Ricchetti – Return visit with a 6 story, 10 residential unit project with 8 parking spaces
Discussion. 
Motion: To ask the applicant to reduce overall building height by 5’ and to maintain 1:1 parking.

 

Old Business

 

Katrina distributed a draft of the new website, which is fundamentally similar in design to the old website, but will be hosted by WordPress so that it will be available to all board members to do their own updates. She is continuing to work on the design and perfecting the system so only authorized people can update each section. Once the site goes live, Katrina (and also Matt) will handle updating and changing the home page.

Anne reminded the board that there is money in the general account that was collected for neighbors Teresa Trego and Kevin Neary and that it should be distributed to their families. Matt will handle that.  Anne further reminded all committee chairs that they need to keep track of the committee members attending meetings as a result of the recent bylaws change. The Election committee will contact committee chairs to be sure that they are all aware of this.

Katrina reminded all to check in with their committee members to see if anyone is eligible to fill the board seat.

The meeting was adjourned by acclaim at 8:44 p.m.

 

BOARD OF DIRECTORS MINUTES – Meeting of April 2, 2012

PRESENT: Matt Ruben, President; John Braxton, Treasurer; Rick Angeli; Fernando Benavides; Larry Freedman; Erika Goldberg; Irene Lambrou; Katrina Mansfield; Steve Richman; Barbara Saverino; Anne Waginger.

ABSENT: Janet Finegar, Secretary; Josh Upin; Don Phillips, Vice-President; Ken Mitchell

The meeting was called to order by the President at 7:05p.m.
Motion: By JB; 2nd by AW: “To approve the minutes of the March Board meeting as presented.” Passed: 9-0-1 President’s

President’s Report from Matt Ruben:

  • Encourages everyone to look at the zoning overlay at zoningmatters.org.
  • Club Aura: meeting with Mike O’Brien and Aura reps, and Larry Freedman, and police reps, and David Witz, near neighbor with noise issues-can’t sleep in his apt on weekends. Same landlord as Aura. Productive meeting, some soundproofing promises made, but situation is not resolved.
  • April General Meeting proposed visit by “PECO A/C saver” rep
  • Mtg with Michael Samchuck re: Delaware Avenue development, master plan involving Waterview Grand, “Oh Havana” rumor (no longer involved in his project), etc. Several large companies involved in entertainment complex plans, movie theater, retail, restaurants, residence, bowling alley, gym/pools, performance venues. Concerns about size, “chain/franchise” quality, parking, traffic flow issues. Supposed to be family friendly, not super-expensive. Plans to use existing buildings for new uses.
  • Ratify Board polls:
    1) Sign onto Take Back Vacant Land project;
    2) Pay for Rat repairs at LL. Ratified: 10-0-0 3)
    3) Bylaws changes approved by Board at special March emergency mtg with quorum (not a poll). Ratified: 10-0-0
  • Question about how to vote on the bylaws on April 26th GM — vote on bylaws before the nominations (since term limit is effective immediately). Then vote by show of hands or ballot, with separate vote for each bylaws change. EC will consider details of the vote at this week’s meeting, and inform Matt to send info to listserve.

 

Treasurer’s Report – John Braxton: written report distributed and reviewed. Motion: By SR; 2nd by RA: “To approve the Treasurer’s Report as presented” Passed: 10-0-0.

Business Association Liaison, Casino, Clean and Green, Education, Environment, Neighborhood Plan, Operations, Townwatch, Recycling, and Urban Design Committees: No reports.

Community Center Committee Report from Larry Freedman: Waiting to hear about zoning/L&I approvals for garage construction.

Election Committee Report by Irene Lambrou: Meeting scheduled for 4/4/12.

Fundraising Committee Report by Barbara Severino: She is preparing to transition off the committee. If we’re holding off on another residential appeal in the spring, maybe we could use spring appeal opportunity to approach businesses? Rick will compile list of possible commercial donors.

Membership Report from Anne Waginger: Meet and greet at soccer shots in LL? Working on new ideas for food suppliers.

Liberty Lands Committee Report from Janet Finegar: written report reviewed.

Zoning Committee Report from Larry Freedman:
Motions: “To approve the actions of the Zoning Committee as follows:

Monday, March 26, 2012

410-12 Olive St. We give preliminary support. Please meet with UDC to discuss garage door, facade materials and landscaping. BS; KM: 10-0-0

901 N. Delaware Ave. We support the application as presented. Please meet with UDC regarding exterior facade on Penn Street. RA; BS: 10-0-0 3)

814-32 N. Lawrence St. (to Orkney) Problem remains with Orkney Street vehicular access and this revised design creates new problem with Reno Street parking access. Please eliminate garages on Orkney Street and parking pad on Reno Street. Please consider meeting with Zoning Review Committee for alternate design ideas. BS; RA: 10-0-0 4)

834 N. 4th St. We support Leithgow Street houses as presented. Please meet with UDC regarding facade, materials, etc. AND 4th Street building is too tall and dense. We ask that it be reduced by one floor, to have 2 residential units and first floor commercial space. Also, please flip the balconies from south side to north side, in order to eliminate view into southern neighbor’s property. Please meet with UDC to discuss these and other issues. KM; SR: 10-0-0 5)

626 N. 5th St. We cannot support the project as presented. There is no hardship to support going from L-4 to residential at this time, given that there has been no thoughtful master plan for the larger site. Also, proposed garages remove street parking. Developer created nine undersized residential lots by advance subdivision. In addition, houses are too tall (out of proportion with rest of the lot), and there are no eyes on the street. BS; KM: 10-0-0 7) 145-47 W. Laurel St. We support the application as presented.KM; FB: 10-0-0

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

 

612 N. 2nd St. Please return with additional and revised plans that show side and rear elevations, with dimensions, front facade and balcony detail/dimensions, and with a reduced overall height of 40ft, building no deeper than either adjacent property, and pilothouse moved back as far as possible. KM; FB: 10-0-0

973-75 N. 5th to Orkney. Please meet with UDC to provide additional elevations, renderings merged with existing structures & streetscapes, and information on facades, materials, etc. 2) Stage construction with 5th St demolition first, and use 5th St for entry of all construction equipment; 3) Avoid long term blocking of streets. JB; KM: 9-0-1

980-82 N. 2nd St. Please return to ZC with revised plans that show reduced depth of building by 10 ft to 74ft, and reduce to 3 residential units, with first floor to be all commercial. RA; KM: 10-0-0

972-76 N. Leithgow. Please return to ZC with revised plans that increase rear yards to 10ft setback of structure for each house. Reduce projection of bay to no more than 2 feet. Meet with UDC regarding materials, etc. RA; KM with amendments to ZC motion: 10-0-0

822-26 N. American. We cannot support the project as presented. Please return with plans that increase open space to 30% for each house as in R10A, as previously requested. Also, reduce height of unit #5 garage structure to one story, and set back from property line. EG; KM: 10-0-0

708 N. 2nd St. Provide as-built plan for current layout. Upon presentation of approved as-built plan, we support the application for this restaurant as presented with the following provisos: 1) no hot cooking on site, no hood, no open flame. 2) hours of operation to be as presented, 7 days, 11AM to 10PM and no later than midnight on Friday/Saturday. 3) Resolve issue regarding staircase to upper floors; 4) Trash/recycling must be removed at least 5 times a week, after 9AM and before 9PM, through restaurant for pickup on 2nd Street, without using Fairmount St easement. 5) Max seating for 23. 6) Signage and lighting as presented. 7) Deliveries not before 9AM or after 9PM. KM; RA with amendments to ZC motion: 10-0-0

ZONING COMMITTEE MINUTES – Monday, March 26, 2012 6PM

Present: Larry Freedman, Irene Lambrou, Ira Upin, Jonathan Sher, Barb Mulckhuyse, Tim McDonald Charlie Abdo, Rene Ermilio, Marc Butakis, Sue Patterson, Chris Richetti, Mike Simons,Chris Isaacson, Matthew Emerson, Barb Mulckhuyse,
Absent: Joe Mikuliak

1) – 410-12 Olive St. – C1 – Nic D’Amico – Return visit with a proposal for a single family dwelling with off street parking. 35′ high x 40′ deep, 3 stories, parking 2 vehicles one behind the other, one curbcut at 12′, near neighbors are happy with this, good compromise.
Motion by JS; 2nd by IL: We give preliminary support. Please meet with UDC to discuss garage door, facade materials and landscaping. Passed: 8-0-2

2) – 901 N. Delaware Ave. – Tom Kehoe – Proposal to expand for processing warehouse and loading. Proposing loading dock inside the building, on Penn St side, as well as more storage there, and more processing on Delaware Ave. side. Digging to level, and pouring floors. Stuccoed panel, new doors.
Motion by BM; 2nd by IU: We support the application as presented. Please meet with UDC regarding exterior facade on Penn Street. Passed: 10-0-0

3) – 814-32 N. Lawrence St. (to Orkney) – L4 – Alex Duller –Return visit with proposal for 18 single family dwellings with parking. Revised parking plan as requested, City approvals expected. Half the number of garages on Orkney (4) (every other Orkney St house has garage); turning northern Orkney St end unit into 2-story condo and use first floor for other 4 Orkney unit parking spaces off Reno Street. Turning radius seems to be adequate for the remaining garages on Orkney. New design doesn’t solve Orkney St vehicle access problem, and introduces new Reno Street problem.
Motion by IL; 2nd by BM: Problem remains with Orkney Street vehicular access and this revised design creates new problem with Reno Street parking access. Please eliminate garages on Orkney Street and parking pad on Reno Street. Please consider meeting with Zoning Review Committee for alternate design ideas. Passed: 10-1-0

4) – 834 N. 4th St. – L4 – Roland Kasis – Proposal to subdivide into 5 lots – 4th St. – 1st floor commercial & 3 residential units; Leithgow St. – 4 single family dwellings with parking. 4 story houses, parking in 4 first floor double carports on Leithgow St. houses. First floor of 4th St apt bldg is a commercial space. Open space between 4th St bldg southern side and adjacent property. No parking for 4th St. bldg. Common roof deck space and some balcony space. Commercial space has some rear yard for trash and such. Leithgow St houses (1800+sf) have roof decks and rear yards. 39’4″ to roof of Leithgow St (parapet 42’4; pilothouse 48′). 4th St bldg 48’5″ (parapet 51’11”; elevator 60’4″). No curbcut needed on 4th St. Should there be fewer, bigger houses with more open space? Folks seem to like the size of the houses and the available open space. Re: 4th St. Bldg–can they flip the pop-out of balconies to north side so they don’t look right into southern neighbor? Also, is it too tall–gives 2ft alley to south. Too dense, no parking. Can we see the southern facade? Neighbors think it’s too tall as compared to houses across 4th Street.
Motion by CA; 2nd by BM: We support Leithgow Street houses as presented. Please meet with UDC regarding facade, materials, etc. Passed: 9-2-0
Motion by IU; 2nd by BM: 4th Street building is too tall and dense. We ask that it be reduced by one floor, to have 2 residential units and first floor commercial space. Also, please flip the balconies from south side to north side, in order to eliminate view into southern neighbor’s property. Please meet with UDC to discuss these and other issues. Passed: 11-0-0

5) – 866-68 N. 4th St. – R10A – Oron Daskal – Proposal to renovate single family dwelling plus the erection of a two story addition on top of one story addition and rehab pilot house. CANCELLED.

6) – 626 N. 5th St. – Tina Roberts (Tower) – L4 – Proposal to build 9 single family dwellings (on 6th St side). Split level, 4 stories, 3BRs/2.5 BA; roof deck with pilothouses; set back 10 ft from front on 6th St. lots are 16′ by 60′ deep; 9 ft rear yard. Corner lot (at Fairmount) is somewhat larger. Garages remove existing parking on this side of 6th St. Couldn’t there be more rear yard space because lot is bigger? lots are subdivided already (how?) Near neighbor pleased with development here, but concerned about parking. Lots are too small. No hardship (until they got their subdivision). How did these get subdivided by right without knowing the use? What about keeping this as industrial–mixed use as proposed in our neighborhood plan?
Motion by IU; 2nd by ™: We cannot support the project as presented. There is no hardship to support going from L-4 to residential at this time, given that there has been no thoughtful master plan for the larger site. Also, proposed garages remove street parking. Developer created nine undersized residential lots by advance subdivision. In addition, houses are too tall (out of proportion with rest of the lot), and there are no eyes on the street. Passed: 11-0-0

7) – 145-47 Laurel St. – Tim McDonald – Proposal to cover rear parking and build a residential unit on top. 500sf unit with kitchen, bathroom, mechanicals space and open space; plus 2nd floor with stair to balcony and green roof. 963sf total. Moving existing parking over a few feet and covering parking. Bridge between new unit and 147. Might be refused for open space and rear yard setback. Zoned R10. Remains 100% pervious. No intention to subdivide; should be considered as extension of current #147 residence. Near neighbor concerns? He’s ok with it.
Motion by JS; 2nd by BM: We support the application as presented. Passed: 10-0-0

NLNA Zoning Committee Meeting – Tuesday, March 27, 2012  6:30PM

Present: Larry Freedman, Irene Lambrou, Charlie Abdo, Jonathan Sher, Sue Patterson, Rene Ermilio, Mike Simons, Matthew Emerson, Tim McDonald, Ira Upin, Chris Isaacson
Absent: Joe Mikuliak, Barb Mulckhuyse, Marc Butakis, Chris Richetti

1) – 612 N. 2nd St. – Kevin O’Neil – C2 – Proposal for a mixed use building. Refused for height/insufficient parking/open space. 45ft. +3 ft parapet. 4 story, commercial use on ground floor and 3 residential units above. Bi-level units on 2&3 floor. Open area in rear for lower unit and roof deck access for others. Just 2 parking spaces in rear ground floor, side by side, curbcut off Phillips St, approved by Streets; tried to balance with more open space. Northern adjacent neighbor concerned about parking on Phillips, too much traffic back there? Wants to see side elevation, showing how far back the new building will go, how it will relate to her building. Pilothouse set back; deck set back 10 ft. Need dimensions and section drawings. Hearing May 15, 2012.
Motion by IL; 2nd by JS: Please return with additional and revised plans that show side and rear elevations, with dimensions, front facade and balcony detail/dimensions, and with a reduced overall height of 40ft, building no deeper than either adjacent property, and pilothouse moved back as far as possible. Passed: 7-0-1

2) – 973-75 N. 5th St. (to Orkney St.) – Kevin O’Neil – R10A – Proposal to build 7 single family dwellings. No hearing yet. 2 units on 5th St without garages; 5 on Orkney with garages, curbcuts approved by Streets already. Rear yards and roof decks, 3BR, 2.5 BA, basements, pilothouse access to deck. 35ft high. Refusals expected for open space and no parking on 5th St. Also minimum lot area due to subdivision might be an issue (lot size proposed to be 900-1000sf). Rear yard depth is met. Existing “Engravers” building will be demolished (cost prohibitive to rehab). Near neighbor concerned about demolition of wall at rear yard property line. Concern about George St. rear yards privacy. Concern about how modern the design is compared to other houses on the street. 1ft bay projection over property line in front; can bays be flipped so they don’t abut adjacent 5th St homes? Folks are concerned about losing their illegal parking on Orkney–could parking be placed inside the development instead of all those curbcuts on Orkney? Developers have worked in Grad Hosp, South of Washington, etc. Some near neighbors excited about the demolition of Engravers, some like the development as shown, not removing street parking. Others want them to stick to minimum lot size (reduce density). Construction should use 5th St lots after demolition for staging and entry of equipment; no street closures. General consensus is that plan is not unreasonable.
Motion by RE; 2nd by IL: Please meet with UDC to provide additional elevations, renderings merged with existing structures & streetscapes, and information on facades, materials, etc. 2) Stage construction with 5th St demolition first, and use 5th St for entry of all construction equipment; 3) Avoid long term blocking of streets. Passed: 8-0-0

3) – 980-82 N. 2nd St. – Kevin O’Neil – C2 – Proposal for a mixed use building. 4 apartments 2BR/2BA, plus 1 to be wheelchair accessible, 1BR. Consolidation of 13ft wide lots to create one 27ft wide lot. Commercial space in front. Roof terrace for the upper units, set back from street, light well in center of property. No parking (not a good spot for a curbcut). Southern adjacent neighbor concerned about depth of new construction, 74ft, about 10ft more than allowed by right. North side has access way between this property and Genesis nails building. But renderings show that buildings abut, so no breezeway intended. Outdoor space: balconies and roof terrace. Rear yard space meant for open space for the rear residential unit. Commercial space has access to basement for trash storage. Residential units are 969/859sf. Set back building from rear, fewer units to have more open space?
Motion by IU; 2nd by MS: Please return to ZC with revised plans that show reduced depth of building by 10 ft to 74ft, and reduce to 3 residential units, with first floor to be all commercial. Passed: 8-1-0

4) – 972-76 N. Leithgow St. – Elizabeth Casey – R10A – Proposal to build two single family dwellings. Expect refusal for lot size (889/1000sf when consolidated from current 3 lots). 3 story, 3000sf, roof decks, 9ft wide angled garages. 8ft rear yard, short of 30% open space. Other new construction on the street have small yards too. Walkout basements into 8ft below grade depressed rear yards. 20 ft wide houses. 35ft tall, roof decks are set back from Leithgow and proposing green roof for rest of roof surface. Bays project 3ft over sidewalk. Adjacent neighbors have concerns about bay projections on this street. Concerns about blocking Leithgow for construction–can they stage from rear lots? Can they get notice of any street blockages? Owners willing to give cellphones and provide notice of construction plans. Are they aware of flooding possibilities for rear yard grade plan? Railing to block use of green roof which fronts Leithgow–so useable deck is set back from street. Houses are too big for the lots; light and air issues in rear?
Motion by MS; 2nd by IU: Please return to ZC with revised plans that increase rear yards by 10ft minimum to 10ft setback of structure for each house. Reduce projection of bay to no more than 2 feet. Meet with UDC regarding materials, etc. Passed: 9-0-0

5) – 822-26 N. American St. – G2 – Bill Vessal – Return visit with a proposal to build 9 single family dwellings with off street parking. Reviewed attempted compliance with prior motion regarding design and site plan; end units face American St. 35ft between building faces in cartway. Height is 47’9″ to top of parapet (pitched downward toward back). Decks are on 2nd floor over rear yard space (6-9ft deep) and project out 5ft cantilevered. Rear yards are not bigger than previous plan. 4-5ft between rear of development and property behind it. No windows on rear of new building. 3 story parking garage. Basements are not habitable; just for utilities. Concern about sunlight to rear neighbor’s garden. 2nd floor balconies make sense? Shouldn’t they have 30% open space per lot (20% for the end units).
Motion by JS; 2nd by ??: We cannot support the project as presented. Please return with plans that increase open space to 30% for each house as in R10A, as previously requested. Also, reduce height of unit #5 garage structure to one story, and set back from property line. Passed: 9-0-0

6) – 708 N. 2nd St. – Ben Coniff – Luke’s Lobster. No cooking on site. Seafood is already processed and shipped to the take-out joint (no shells). Less than 600sf, 23 seats inside. Prep area, fridges, toaster, kettles for reheating soup. Trash/recycling plan–2 bags of trash a day, space in rear of building with walkway to Fairmount with rolling bins for pickup. Stored inside until pick-up at least 5 times a week. Open 7 days, 11AM to 10PM, midnight at latest on Fri/Sat. Dishwashing is minimum in 3 basin sink. No silverware. Small metal hanging sign like KooZeeDoo, logo on window. Not changing facade otherwise. Spotlight on the sign, on timer and not on overnight. Running several stores for years. Applicants would be owners, with 8-12 employees (3-4 on at a time). First employee comes in at 9-10AM. Basement for storage, there might be some refrigerators (not a full walk-in). What about access to upper floors for further occupation of building? Owner plans rear stairs to upper floors– would that even fit? Be legal? When is trash pick-up? Put cans out right before pickup, or bags only through restaurant.
Motion by IU; 2nd by IL: Provide as-built plan for current layout. Upon presentation of approved as-built plan, we support the application for this restaurant as presented with the following provisos: 1) no hot cooking on site, no hood, no open flame. 2) hours of operation to be as presented, 7 days, 11AM to 10PM with close at midnight at the latest on Friday/Saturday. 3) Resolve issue regarding staircase to upper floors; 4) Trash/recycling must be removed at least 5 times a week, after 9AM and before 9PM, through restaurant for pickup on 2nd Street, without using Fairmount St easement. 5) Max seating for 23. 6) Signage and lighting as presented. 7) Deliveries not before 9AM or after 9PM. Passed: 9-0-0

Old Business

  • Katrina has appt with Micah to discuss finalizing NLNA website, presented mock-up for consideration by board.
  • PennDOT “dog park” will be on ZC April agenda

New Business

  • Who can take out the trash this week (Ken on vacation). Katrina volunteered, thank you.
  • Irene Lambrou resigned from the Zoning Committee, need new secretary.
  • The meeting was adjourned by acclaim at 8:50p.m.