LEWIS COUNTY PLANNING BOARD
June 21, 2007
1. Call to Order: Vice Chairman Sweet called the monthly meeting of the Lewis County Planning Board to order at 6:05 PM in the Legislative Chambers, Lewis County Court House, Lowville, NY.
2. Roll Call: Board members present: Tom Sweet, Pat Wallace, Mike Kaido, Vicki Roy and Mike Green. Staff present: Renee Beyer, Planner. Joe Virkler and Jason Carroll, applicants.
3. Reading and Approval of Minutes: The April 19, 2007 meeting minutes were received and there were no modifications by the Board members present. Mrs. Roy motioned to approve the minutes; Mr. Wallace seconded the motion, which carried unanimously.
4. Correspondence and Communication: Mrs. Beyer read the responses from the municipalities for the projects that the Board had reviewed at the April meeting.
5. Report From Officers: None
6. Report of Special Committees:
239-M Review Committee
Mrs. Beyer reviewed the referral from the Town of Martinsburg first, at the request of the Board.
TOWN OF MARTINSBURG PLANNING BOARD: Special Use Permit request for the installation of an Asphalt Production Plant on Whitaker Road in the Town of Martinsburg. Joe Virkler - Applicant
- Compatibility With Adjacent Uses:
The proposed project is located on the southeast side of Whitaker Road west of the intersection with NYS Route 12. The proposed business is located on a vacant parcel owned by the applicant. An existing stone quarry is located on the north side of Whitaker Road near the proposed project. A residence is located approximately 400 ft to the east of the proposed site. The location is zoned agricultural, according to the Towns Zoning Law; manufacturing is an allowed use in this zone and requires a special permit. The project is compatible with the adjacent uses.
The location of the nearest residence was clarified by Mr. Carroll who stated that they had physically measured the distance from the nearest proposed driveway, and the measurement was approximately 935 ft. Mr. Green asked for clarification of the exact location of the proposed project. Mrs. Beyer clarified the location.
- Traffic Generation and Effect:
The proposed project is located on Whitaker Road, which is a Town Road. Parking is addressed in the application as well as traffic flow. Four parking spaces are located near the front of the property for employees. Also, depicted in the site plan is a 30 ft wide entrance and exit to allow for traffic flow. The proposed project is located approximately 600 ft from an active stone quarry. It does appear that the existing road can accommodate an increase in traffic.
§ Protection of Community Character:
The proposed project is located in an agricultural zone. There currently is an active stone quarry located near the proposed project. The proposed project will not adversely affect the existing community character.
Additionally, the site plan depicts a silo that measures 42 ft in height as well as an elevator that measures 52 ft in length that will be feeding material into the 42 ft high silo. According to the Town's Zoning Law, structures of this type measuring in excess of 40 ft require a special use permit. The permit will not be granted unless a.) the applicant can demonstrate that there is a public need for the proposed use, b.) that this need cannot be met by any other means, c.) that the height of the structure is the minimum necessary to accomplish its intended purpose, d.) that all practical means have been used to minimize any negative aesthetic impacts identified by the planning board, and that the structure does not significantly impair solar access to buildings or solar energy systems equipment.
Signage was not discussed in the application.
The Board inquired about a sign for the business and wondered if they planned to put a sign up on the feeder silo. The applicant stated that they do not intend to put a sign on the property at all other than the entrance and exit signs.
The driveways will be constructed with gravel. The site plan shows a 24" diameter culvert at both the entrance and exit to allow for storm drainage. The applicant proposes to remove the topsoil from the majority of the three-acre area and will be covering the area with gravel. The site plan depicts provisions for sediment and erosion control with the installation of silt fence at the existing low area of the site. Additionally, the site plan depicts a 3 ft earthen berm located at the western edge of the property to provide additional drainage control.
Lighting was not addressed in the application.
Other than the 3 ft earthen berm, landscaping/screening is not addressed in the application. According to the Town's Zoning Law, the site is to be suitably landscaped, and appropriately screened from adjacent properties and the road so as to protect the visual character of the area and to minimize negative impacts on adjacent properties and the neighborhood.
Mr. Green asked about production capacity. The applicants estimate that they will be producing between 25,000 and 30,000 tons of asphalt per year. The plant itself is able to produce, at maximum output, 18,000 tons per day.
Mrs. Beyer made a recommendation to approve the project with recommendations. The recommendations were: The applicant should screen the site, as appropriate, on all sides as to protect the visual character of the area and to minimize negative impacts on adjacent properties. However, if the berm is a suitable height additional screening may not be required. Additionally, according to the Town's Zoning Law, the applicant must request an additional Special Use Permit in regard to the height of the proposed structures.
Mr. Green made a motion to approve the project with recommendations. Mrs. Roy seconded the motion, which carried unanimously.
TOWN OF LOWVILLE ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS: Use Variance request to allow the establishment of a used farm equipment sales business on the corner of Rice Road and Number Three Road, County Route 14, in the Town of Lowville. Andrew Nikitich- Applicant
- Compatibility With Adjacent Uses:
The proposed project is located north west of the Village of Lowville on the corner of the Number Three Road and the Rice Road. The land use surrounding the area is mostly agricultural. The abutting property south of Rice Road contains a residence and an operating farm. The proposed project is located in an agricultural zone and is not an allowed use in this zone however due to the nature of the business it would be compatible with the adjacent uses.
- Traffic Generation and Effect:
The project is located on the Number Three Road, County Route 14. According to the site plan, the entrance drive is located on the Number Three Road. There appears to be good sight distance in both directions at this location. It does appear that the existing road can accommodate an increase in traffic.
§ Protection of Community Character:
The proposed project is located in the Town of Lowville, according to the Town's Zoning Law a retail business/machinery sales is not an allowed use in an agricultural zone. The Town's Zoning Law requires a 50 ft front setback from the centerline of Number Three Road for an allowed non-residential use. The applicant's site plan shows a 10 ft setback from the edge of the Number Three Road. Due to the fact that the site is located on a corner lot, the Town Zoning Law requires the setback of the front yard on the Town Road be equal to the minimum or 25 ft, which ever is less, from the centerline. Again, the site plan shows a 10 ft setback from the edge of the Rice Road. An area variance will also be required for this project if the applicant is unable to meet these required setbacks. The proposed project will not adversely affect the existing community character.
Signage is not addressed in the application.
Drainage is not addressed in the application.
Screening is not addressed in the application.
Lighting is not addressed in the application.
Mrs. Beyer made a recommendation to the board to disapprove the project due to the fact that the applicant did not provide enough information to allow for a complete and proper review of this project. Additionally, the setback of the "business area" from the roadway is difficult to determine, an area variance may also be required.
There was discussion among board members in regard to the information contained on the site plan. Mr. Green stated that there was not enough information for the project to be considered appropriate. Mr. Sweet commented on the setbacks from the road right-of-way and stated that currently the applicant may be within the right-of-way.
A motion was made by Mr. Wallace to disapprove the project and to list the items that were missing from the application, such as setbacks, signage, lighting, traffic flow and drainage. Mr. Kaido seconded the motion, which carried unanimously.
7. Report of County Planner:
Mrs. Beyer collected the quizzes from Tutorial II and Tutorial III. Mr. Sweet and Mrs. Roy were the only members who had completed them. Other members were instructed to forward them to the Economic Development Office as soon as possible. Mr. Wallace asked that another copy of the tutorials/quizzes be sent to him.
8. Unfinished Business: none
9. New Business:
Mrs. Beyer explained to the Board that the County was currently conducting a mandated 8-year review of the Counties five Agricultural Districts. She also explained that they would be consolidated into one new district so that future reviews will be done on one anniversary date. She explained that as part of the review process the County Planning Board and the County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board need to provide a report to the County Board of Legislators regarding the districts.
Mrs. Beyer provided maps of the five current districts and asked the group if they had any input in regard to possible changes to be made to the districts. Mrs. Beyer informed the Board that she would be reviewing data from a worksheet that had been sent to landowners and that she would forward a report to the Board for their review. She also stated that the Board would most likely need to meet in July to discuss the report.
There being no other business, a motion to adjourn the meeting was made by Mr. Wallace and seconded by Mrs. Roy. Vice Chairman Sweet adjourned the meeting at 7:10 PM.