Borough of Brielle, NJ
| November 10, 2009
November 10, 2009
|BRIELLE PLANNING BOARD
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2009
The Regular meeting of the Brielle Planning Board was held on Tuesday, November 10, 2009 at 7:30 pm in the Brielle Borough Hall, 601 Union Lane. After a moment of silent prayer and a salute to the flag, roll call was taken:
Present – Mayor Thomas Nicol, Thomas Condon, Thomas Heavey,
James Harman, James Langenberger, Charles Sarnasi,
Absent – Councilman Frank Garruzzo, Tim Sigler, James Stenson
Also present were Michael Rubino, Board Attorney, Alan Hilla, Jr., Board Engineer and Karen S. Brisben, Recording Secretary. There were approximately 30 people in the audience.
Chairman Condon then called the meeting to order and declared a quorum. He announced that, in compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act, notice of this Body’s meeting had been sent to the official newspapers of the Board fixing the time and place of all hearings.
The Minutes of the October 13, 2009 meeting were then approved on a motion by Mr. Langenberger, seconded by Mrs. Vitale and approved unanimously by voice vote, all aye.
The Board members all received the NJ Planner, September/October2009 issue.
Application for CAFRA Permit for Block 59, Lots 16-17.01, Doane & Kathie Kelly, 18 Crescent Drive. Also received was a letter from the Monmouth County Planning Board re: Coastal Regional Strategic Development Plan, Public Meeting #2.
On file in the Board office: Monmouth County Planning Board – 2009 Monmouth County Profile.
The Board turned to the approval of a Resolution for a Site Plan & Variance for Block 33.01, Lot 1, 110 Union Avenue, owned by 110 Union Avenue, LLC (Applicant – Thomas Whelan), to allow construction of an additional principal structure (property now has a restaurant on site that will remain.
As all Board members, as well as the applicant’s attorney, had received a draft copy and there were no further changes or recommendations, the following Resolution was presented for approval:
“WHEREAS, the Planning Board of the Borough of Brielle, County of Monmouth, State of New Jersey has before it an application for Preliminary and Final Site Plan along with variances for and on behalf of Thomas Whelan for property known as 110 Union Avenue, Block 33.1 Lot 1 on the tax map of the Borough of Brielle, and the applicant having submitted a site plan prepared by Insight Engineering, LLC dated March 20, 2009 (no revision date) and an architectural plan consisting of three (3) sheets prepared by Keith Kirsch Architecture dated May 10, 2009 with one revision and the applicant asking for permission to put an office building on the site, and an open public meeting on the matter having been conducted on October 13, 2009, and, at that time the Board having listened to the testimony presented by the applicant on behalf of the application and of the objectors; and
WHEREAS, the Board has jurisdiction of the matter as a result of the applicable Ordinances of the Borough, adopted pursuant to the Municipal Land Use Law, Chapter 291, Law of 1975, as amended and supplemented, and the Board having considered the matter at a public hearing as set forth above, and the Board having made the following findings of fact:
1. The property in question is located on the east side of Union Avenue (New Jersey State Highway Route 71) and is located on the corners of Fisk Avenue and Magnolia Avenue as the intersect with Route 71. The lot is partially located within the Borough’s C-1 Central Commercial Zone and is also partially located within the Borough’s R-3 Single Family Residential Zone. The property currently contains a restaurant and parking area with driveway access to Union Avenue and Magnolia Avenue. The applicant proposes to maintain the existing restaurant and parking facilities on the south side of the lot associated with it and construct a two story office building on the northerly portion of the parking lot. The proposed office building will contain approximately 5,500 square feet. As the applicant proposes to maintain the portion of the existing parking lot on the southern section of the property which protrudes into the residential zone a Use Variance is necessary to construct a new office building on the lot, as the parking facilities are to be shared with the office.
2. With regard to parking facilities, it appears that the restaurant on the premises is going to reopen it; at the time of hearing it was closed for over a year. The Board is satisfied, however, that the type of restaurant to be opened at the premises will have primary parking during the evening hours and, although there will be a possibility that the restaurant will be opened for lunch, the Board finds that there should be sufficient parking at the site for both the restaurant use and the office use.
3. The Board finds that to the extent that a variance is necessary for parking that the same can be granted as the Board finds it is satisfied that the restaurant and office building can properly share the parking without a conflict. To the extent that a variance is necessary for parking pursuant to 21-9.5, the Board grants the same.
4. It should be noted that with reference to parking in a residential zone per Code Section 21-17.1 the Board finds that this is an existing condition which should not be exacerbated by the addition of the office building. The Board is satisfied that to an extent that a variance is needed from Section 21-17.1 that the same can be granted. The Board further finds that to the extent that this variance might be a Use Variance that the necessary proofs have been given to the Board to justify the granting of it.
5. With regard to Code Section 21-33 it appears a variance for a loading space is necessary. The Board finds that there is sufficient parking at the sight to handle FedEx type vehicles. The Board finds that because of the use of the site as an office building that no loading space is necessary. Therefore, the Board can grant the variance from said requirement.
6. With regard to Code Section 21-35.3 the Board finds that to an extent the variance is necessary that the same can be granted as it satisfied that the Engineer submitting the plan is sufficiently satisfied in landscape architecture to submit sufficient details ( re: the landscaping on the site).
7. With regard to Code Section 21-36.1, it is required that a landscaped area five feet along all property lines including public streets. It appears that a variance is necessary for the restaurant portion of the property as it lacks landscaping along the property lines. This condition has been in effect for well over 40 years. The Board is satisfied that because it is an existing condition there is no need to provide extra landscaping at the site. Therefore, to an extent, the variances are necessary from Code Section 21.36.1 same are granted.
8. With regard to Code Section 21-36 it is required that a 50 foot residential buffer between commercial properties and residential properties. It appears that a variance is necessary. The existing restaurant parking lot extends into the R-3 Zone. The proposed improvements maintain this condition. It also appears that the eastern most portion of the restaurant parking lot is located not only within the 50 foot buffer zone but additionally within the R-3 Zone. It appears from the testimony offered by the applicant along with looking at the plans and knowledge of the site that there is actually no room to develop the site because of the buffer and zoning requirements. The Board is satisfied that as the restaurant has been at the site for a number of years that the condition regarding the R-3 Zone is an existing condition not exacerbated by this application. It further appears that there is no vacant property surrounding the site which could help alleviate this condition and it also appears that if the applicant was made to maintain a 50 foot buffer, the lot would in fact be zoned into an utility variance from Section 21-36.9 and 21-36.12, which are necessary. The Board grants the same.
9. To lessen the traffic impact of the residential neighborhood the Board has agreed to restrict a “no right hand turn” from the site onto Magnolia Lane. In addition thereto, the applicant has agreed to allow the site to be subject to Title 39 and the applicant will take what steps are necessary to insure the same.
10. It should also be noted that with regard to yard requirements at the site, namely lot depth of 150 feet being required and 144.3 feet existing and front yard setback of 30 feet required and 4.9 feet existing along Fisk Avenue and 12.9 feet existing along Union Avenue. These are existing conditions not exacerbated by this application to the extent that variances are necessary to relieve existing conditions, the same are granted by the Board.
11. With regard to issues raised by the Board Engineer, Alan P. Hilla, Jr., in his letter of September 17, 2009 is hereby found as follows:
(a) The applicant has agreed to comply with Paragraph 2, Page 3; a variance has been granted by the Board.
(b) With regard to Paragraph 4, Page 3 a variance has been granted by the Board for violation of Section 21-17.1.
(c) With regard to Paragraph 5, Page 3, the applicant has agreed to comply with trash enclosure requirement.
(d) With regard to Paragraph 6, Page 3, the applicant has agreed to ensure that all signs will comply with Code Sections 21-22 through 21-30.
(e) With regard to Paragraph 7, Page 3, the Board finds that there is an existing sign within 15 feet of the property line and that this sign encroaches on the Union Avenue right-of-way. This is an existing condition not changed by this application. The extended variance is needed to allow this to remain; the same is granted.
(f) With regard to Paragraph 8, Page 3, the applicant shall amend the plan to the satisfaction of the Board Engineer.
(g) With regard to Paragraph 9, Page 3, the applicant shall amend the plan to the satisfaction of the Board Engineer.
(h) With regard to Paragraph 10, Page 3, this has been addressed through variances (details above).
(i) With regard to Paragraph 11, Page, this also been satisfied.
(j) With regard to Paragraph 12, Page 4, the applicant testified that there will be 78 parking spaces at the premises.
(k) With regard to Paragraph 13, Page 4, the Board is satisfied that the access isle can be used to service both the office e and the restaurant.
(l) With regard to Paragraph 14, Page 4, this has been addressed by variance mentioned for loading space.
(m) With regard to Paragraph 15, Page 4, this has been addressed by creating a variance for landscaping.
(n) With regard to Paragraph 16, Page 4, this has been addressed by providing a variance for the existing condition.
(o) With regard to Paragraph 17, Page 4, the applicant has agreed to revise the plans to the satisfaction of the Board Engineer.
(p) With regard to Paragraph 18, Page 5, this has been addressed by the granting of variances by the Board for parking requirements.
(q) With regard to Paragraph 19, Page 5, the Board is satisfied that after listening to testimony of applicant that a minimum of 20% of the site shall be devoted to landscaped areas and the applicant shall revise its plans consistent with those representations.
(r) With regard to Paragraph 20, Page 5, the applicant shall comply with revising the plans to comply with same.
(s) With regard to Paragraph 21, Page 5, the applicant has agreed to provide a fence that is 6 foot in height along Fisk Avenue, the eastern boundary line, and Magnolia Avenue side of the premises.
(t) With regard to Paragraph 22, Page 5, the applicant shall provide details with regard to the size of the trash enclosure to the satisfaction of the Board Engineer.
(u) With regard to Paragraph 23 through 32, pages 5 & 6, the applicant has agreed to comply.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Board that it adopts the aforesaid
findings of fact, and based upon the aforesaid findings the Board concludes that the applicant has satisfied the following:
1. The Board finds that the positive and negative criteria necessary to support the granting of both the “D” Variance and the “C” Variances have been satisfied. With regard to the “D” Variance, the positive criteria was satisfied as a result of the particularly suited use for the building and because the property in the past was used for the same general use. The negative criteria were satisfied as the Board finds no detriment as a result of the granting of the application. The Board also finds that there will be no adverse impact as a result of the granting of the application.
2. With regard to the negative criteria the Board finds that there will be no detriment and no substantial impairment of intent and purpose of the Zone Plan and Zoning Ordinances of the Borough by the granting of this application.
3. The Board finds that by reason of an extraordinary and exceptional situation that uniquely affected the subject property and the structure which exists lawfully thereon the strict application of the aforementioned regulations would result in peculiar and exceptional practical difficulties to, or exception and undue hardship upon the applicant. It should be noted that the Board finds that the existing building at the site exists there lawfully:
a) The applicant has demonstrated that the purposes of the Municipal Land Use Law and the Land Use Ordinances of the Borough of Brielle would be advanced by a deviation from the Zoning Ordinance requirements at issue, and further that the benefits of any such deviation would substantially outweigh any detriment resulting from a granting of the application.
b) The Board finds that the relief can be granted without substantial detriment to the public good and that the relief will not substantially impair the intent and purpose of the Zone Plan and Zoning Ordinances of the Borough.
WHEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Planning Board of the Borough of
Brielle hereby grants variance relief, including Use Variance and Preliminary and Final Site Plan as specified herein. The maps cannot be signed until the following conditions are met:
1. Subject to the development here at issue being undertaken in accordance with the testimony presented to the Board and the plans submitted be approved by the Board.
2. Subject to the testimony of all witnesses called on behalf of the applicant being true and accurate.
3. Subject to the application, all attachments thereto, and all exhibits offered by the applicant being accurate depictions of that which they purport to represent.
4. The applicant shall furnish proof that taxes have been paid through the current quarter and through the quarter in which he receives his initial construction permit.
5. Subject to the applicant paying in full all application fees, review fees, engineering and consulting fees, and escrows. Subject to the applicant posting required performance bonds and/or guarantees, as well as engineering and inspection fees, in amounts fixed by the Board and/or Borough Engineers and in such form as shall be acceptable to the Borough Attorney and Governing Body.
6. Subject to the applicant obtaining and complying with the approval of any other reviewing agency having jurisdiction over the property and/or the project, including but not limited to the Board of Health, the Borough Engineer, the Borough Fire Official, and any County, State or Federal agency; provided however, that in the event that any other agency or authority shall require any changes in the plans herein approved, then any such changes must be submitted to this Board for review and approval. Further, if another governmental agency grants a waiver or variance of a regulation, which same affects this approval or any condition attached hereto, or otherwise requires any changes in the plans herein approved, then this matter shall be brought back before the Board for review of any such action, and the Board shall have the right to modify this approval and/or the conditions attached hereto.
1. The applicant shall be in compliance with the Bored Engineer’s letter of September 17, 2009.
2. Location of the 6-foot fence on the three sides of the property as set forth in the Resolution.
3. The Applicant shall enter into an agreement to allow the Brielle Borough Police Department to enforce Subtitle 1 of Title 39.
4. The applicant shall restrict the use of the premises to provide for a no-right hand turn onto Magnolia Avenue.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that, as this application for development proceeds, the Land Use Office of the Borough may, upon the request of the applicant and with the written advice of the Board Engineer, grant such changes as are necessary with respect to the approved site plan and improvements related thereto that are not substantial and the Board does hereby authorize the Land Use Officer with the advice of the Board Engineer to take such steps as are appropriate to protect the integrity of the site plan approval being herein conditionally granted and to insure compliance with the Borough of Brielle Land Use and Development Ordinances and the Mt. Laurel requirements as well as compliance with the Borough Affordable Housing Trust Fund. Any substantial deviation in the opinion of the Engineer and/or Land Use Officer shall require a revised site plan application and plat to be submitted to this Board for its review and approval. Any non-substantial and/or minor changes permitted shall be placed upon a revised Preliminary Plat with same being signed and dated by the applicant and the applicant’s Engineer, as well as the Board Engineer and Land Use Officer indicating the changes made with the original being filed with the Land Use Office and a copy filed with the Land Use Office and the Planning Board Secretary and the Borough/Board Engineer. It is understood that with respect to any minor changes and/or deviations approved by this procedure herein set forth that same not in any way extend any applicable time limits with respect to final major subdivision approval that may exist according to law.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that in the event the conditions set forth in this Site Plan Approval are not met by November 10, 2011, with the Site Plan having been executed by said date, then this application shall be listed on the Planning Board Agenda for the meeting of the following month for dismissal without prejudice unless the Applicant offers appropriate reasons for the delay, all of which may be considered at the discretion of the Board. It should be understood that this time limit, of an administrative nature herein, is not a representation or guaranty by the Planning Board as existing State Law may affect same and it continues to be the Applicant’s sole responsibility and obligation to comply with applicable law.
Further, this Board directs that the Land Use Office take whatever steps it may deem necessary to insure that restoration of this site to its original condition occurs if the developer is deemed by the Land Use Office to be in substantial non-compliance with the standards of performance and the conditions set forth in this Resolution of the Planning Board (and/or Borough Ordinances) and that steps also be taken as may be deemed necessary by the Borough to place the responsibility of same financially and otherwise upon the Applicant and the principal involved as well as his heirs, successors and assigns.”
A motion to approve the above Resolution was made by Mrs. Vitale, seconded by Mr. Langenberger and approved by the following roll call vote:
Ayes: Thomas Condon, James Harman, James Langenberger, Charles Sarnasi,
Not Eligible to Vote: Mayor Thomas Nicol, Thomas Heavey
The Board then turned to the continued hearing for an application for a Minor Subdivision for Block 89.01, Lots 7, 8 & 9, known as 608 & 610 Oceanview Road, 608 Oceanview Road owned by 608 Oceanview Road, LLC and 610 Oceanview Road owned by Anthony & Sandra Mascia, minor subdivision to create 3 buildable lots from 2 now existing. Variances – Lot Depth, 125 feet required, 112.6 feet existing (Lot 9); Front Yard, 40 feet required, 39.9 feet existing (Lot 9); Rear Yard, 40 feet required, 39.8 feet existing (Lot 9); Curb Cuts, 5 feet from proposed lot line between Lot 8 and Lot 9, “property use easement” requested.
Mr.Thomas J. Hirsch, Esq. came forward and explained that, at the first meeting, Mr. Keith Henderson, Esq. had to fill in due to prior commitment Mr. Hirsch had. Mr. Henderson represented the Mascias and Mr. Hirsch represented Oceanview Road, LLC. Mr. Hirsch read the transcript of that meeting and now has a knowledge of what transpired and he wanted to take a few minutes to clear things up.
This application came about with the initial intent of no variances being required. Also, at the last hearing, the neighbors spoke of an informal hearing a few years ago and Mr. Hirsch felt there may have been confusion over this and that informal hearing was to create two undersized lots and the Board was not in favor of this happening. Now Mr. Schwier wants to subdivide but with no variances, however, as per Exhibit A-1, there is a curvature of the road which makes slightly undersized; he then undertook negotiations with the neighbor to purchase additional land they had on Lot 9 and this would make all lots conforming.
As a result of this they had an agreement between them; Dr. Mascia wanted to insure that landscaping and trees there now will stay on this area to be sold. He then presented two photos, which were marked Exhibit A-1-11/10/09 and Exhibit A-2- 11/10/09, these show the driveway and the 5.99 feet to be transferred which is shown with stakes in the ground in the photos. This is a beautifully landscaped area and, at the time this was negotiated, they did not know this would need a variance – they had agreed on a conservation easement which would keep this area landscaped. Somewhere in the hearing last month this got confused. He went on to explain that Mr. Hilla pointed out, in his report, this creates a side-yard setback variance and Mr. Hirsch emphasized that this was not being created there, the driveway exists in this way today. The house would need the setback from the current property line. The reason Brielle has driveway setbacks is so driveways are not on top of each other and this agreement was between two property owners and not before this Board for approval. So there is a five foot setback for the driveway and another 12 feet for the house, this equates to 17 feet between the driveway and the adjoining structure.
A member of the public had a concern about a garage built right by his property and the Council said it was legal and he felt this driveway easement is exactly what this audience member should want as this keeps a nice landscaped area in this location and this seems in line with what the town wants, to keep greenery. No building can be built here, this easement will keep this area green, that is the intent here, no subterfuge.
Mr. Hirsch finished by stating that both property owners were here and can testify if the Board desires. Mr. Rubino did not think that was necessary unless someone in the audience objects. Mr. Hirsch again said the lots are oversized but have non-conforming depth due to the curve in the road; when the tax map was made, there were three lots but one person bought two lots and built one large home. He said no other properties on Oceanview Road can do this type of subdivision as there are not any other lots this large. There are really three conforming lots and the driveway can be moved to remove the variance but he urged the Board not to require this and leave the driveway where it is with this lovely buffer. He understood the neighbors’ concerns but this will not hurt this area and there are not non-conforming lots being created, he felt that was a misconception and this will not set a precedent to allow 40 more homes in this area.
Mr. Rubino wanted it noted in the record that Mr. Hirsch did re-notice the property owners within 200 feet. Mayor Nicol asked Mr. Rubino to explain the “conservation easement” and Mr. Rubino said this is an easement to maintain this natural buffer, no structure will ever be built there and the landscaping will stay. The two parties could release this and, if this happens, the town could become the beneficiary and this will keep it in perpetuity. Mr. Henderson, who was in the audience, said the Mascias had no problem with this stipulation on the easement and Mr. Hirsch said the same thing for his client, Thomas Schwier. Mr. Rubino said there will be no maintenance obligations for the town and Mr. Hirsch agreed, saying this is between the property owners.
Mr. Langenberger asked where the side setback would be for the home on Lot 8 and Mr. Hirsch showed where it would be 12 feet from the existing lot line and will also be part of the easement. Mr. Rubino commented this would be put in the Resolution; Mr. Hirsch said the exact number will be 17.92 feet from the new property line.
At this time Mr. Condon opened the hearing for questions only to the attorney and the owner of 607 Oceanview Road came forward and liked the clarification made by Mr. Hirsch but asked how they migrated to a new conservation easement and term. Mr. Hirsch said nothing has been changed at all, he felt the term “conservation easement” would help clear up confusion; he added this agreement was done months ago. He then asked if the conservation easement would be governed by the town and Mr. Heavey answered by stating this is made between two property owners and they are making this a condition of approval, the easement is better for the town as the owners will keep it green. Mr. Hirsch said the application is meeting all setback requirements but the gentleman was still confused for the need for a conservation easement so he was shown Exhibit A-1 and that Lot 8 will own an additional 5.9 feet, the easement is for the conservation of trees and the setbacks are measured from the property line. No house on Lot 8 will be closer to the lot line than 17.95 feet, the conservation easement is just to keep the landscaping in place. He wanted to know what the driveway issue was then and Mr. Hirsch said that, while the driveway can be as close as 1.5 feet to the property line they are trying to avoid this with this easement and, technically, a variance is necessary.
As there were no other questions from the audience, that portion was closed and Mr. Hirsch said he had no further summary to make. Mr. Rubino told the Board there will be a vote on the subdivision that is being created for two legal lots, the only issue is if the driveway can stay in place; the only motion the Board has before it would be to require a new driveway 5 feet from the property line, unless the Board wants to keep it for beauty and buffer. This is why there is this in the Ordinance, to keep driveways off property lines.
Mr. Condon thanked Mr. Hirsch for clarifying this before the Board this evening and again opened the meeting to the public for any comments – as there was no response, that portion was closed. The Board did not have any further questions or comments either, so Mr. Langenberger made a motion to approve this application as presented with compliance with Mr. Hilla’s engineering report, the town becoming the beneficiary of the conservation easement with no obligations for maintenance and 17.9 feet for the construction of the new home on Lot 8. This motion was seconded by Mr. Harman and approved by the following roll call vote:
Ayes: Mayor Thomas Nicol, Thomas Condon, James Harman, James
Langenberger, Charles Sarnasi
Abstain: Terre Vitale
Not Eligible to Vote: Thomas Heavey
The Board then turned to an application for Variance for Block 59, Lots 16, 16.01, 17 & 17.01, known as 18 Crescent Drive, owned by Doane & Kathie Kelly, to allow demolition of an existing structure & construction of a new single family dwelling. Change of Grade greater than 2 feet, variance required. Front Setback – 30 feet required, 18.5 feet form Donnelly Place proposed, 11.5 foot variance requested. Minimum Front Setback for Accessory Structures – 30 feet required, front setback for mechanical equipment 16 feet proposed from Donnelly Place, 14 foot variance requested. Driveway Width maximum allowed 30 feet, driveway width of 40 feet proposed accessing Donnelly Place, 10 foot variance requested.
Mr. Condon had to recuse himself from this hearing as his brother lives within 200 feet of this property and he stepped off the dais; Mr. Heavey took over the Chair for this hearing.
The fee of $300 was paid, taxes are paid to date and property owners within 200 feet as well as the newspaper were properly notified.
Mr. Mark Aikins, Esq. came forward to represent the Kellys. He said they wish to replace the existing residence in the R-3 zone with a magnificent new home; this property has been in the Kelly family for years and both Mr. Kelly and the architect, Chris Rice, were here.
Mr. Rice then came forward and was sworn in; as he has testified before this Board many times, the Board accepted him as an expert witness. The site plan was marked as Exhibit A-1, the floor plans marked as Exhibit A-2 & Exhibit A-3, Exhibit A-4 were the building elevations and A-5 was the engineering/grading plan. Mr. Rice explained that the house there now is tucked away with a few other structures, it is shown on Exhibit A-1 with the slight hash marks and the proposed plan on top. They are going to do one attached structure on a unique shaped lot. Donnelly Place is a mystery as some call it a driveway and some a path.
On Crescent Drive they need a 30 foot setback and, with Donnelly Place, this created a problem; technically they have to be 30 feet from Donnelly Place but they are asking for a variance as the new structure will be 18.5 feet from Donnelly Place – he noted that the existing home is only 6.5 feet from Donnelly Place. Also, the new garage and cabana-type structure will all be attached to the new home. Mr. Aikins said there is no parking on Donnelly Place, there are signs that state this, it just serves as a conduit to put boats in the river. Mr. Rice stated he did not feel Donnelly Place is an actual street so he felt this arrangement would work here.
He then presented a three-dimensional photo, which was marked as Exhibit A-5, to show the big picture here, this is a computer drawing and will give an idea of size and scale; the height of the garage will be 27 feet where 35 is allowed and this mitigates the setbacks. Also, the house will be a little under 35 feet and the elevation steps down from the house to the breezeway to the garage.
The house will be a classic seashore colonial with a cedar shingle roof and siding, there is a lot going on with the roof lines for a 1 ½ story structure. Mr. Aikins referred to Exhibit A-5 and asked about the width of the driveway opening. Mr. Rice said they are asking for 40 feet and 30 feet is required, they do not have a curb cut existing and can do 30 feet is required by the Board but they would prefer the 40 feet. Mr. Aikins asked about the mechanical equipment and Mr. Rice was not sure where that will end up. Mr. Rice went back to the driveway opening and explained there will be a three car garage and, as there are no curbs here, the 40 feet wide width should not be an issue; they can do 30 feet and then fan out if the Board wants this.
As this time the hearing was opened to the public for questions to Mr. Rice and, as there was no response, that portion of the hearing was closed. Mr. Langenberger asked about the right-of-way on Donnelly Place and Mr. Rice said 30 feet. Mr. Langenberger was a little concerned if they bring curbstone out to the existing road how that work for emergency equipment; they need at least 8 feet and he felt there may be a problem with the south side of the garage. He did not want to see the street cut down so emergency vehicles can’t get in. Mr. Rice said the new home will open this area up and Mr. Langenberger said he saw curbstone on the plans. Mr. Rice said this will be on the property line and Mr. Aikins said the plans state “curb to be replaced” and they can work with this; Mr. Rubino asked Mr. Hilla if he could come up with something to put in the Resolution to clarify this and Mr. Hilla said he would work on it.
Mr. Langenberger then asked about the cabana-like structure and if there would be cooking facilities, he did not want to see it turned into a living area. Mr. Rice said they are doing away with the rental unit that exists now on this property and there will be no other living area there. Mr. Langenberger said he was raising these concerns as there was a fire there a few years ago and it was tight for emergency vehicles.
At this time the hearing was opened to the public for general comments and again there was no response so that portion was closed. Mr. Hilla spoke to the Board and echoed Mr. Langenberger’s concern about the access, it is hard to tell the curbing on the plan and what it will actually be; if the curb were something that was mountable, like block, that may work. Mr. Rubino offered to work the Resolution that the curbing will have to be approved by the Engineer and Fire Company and this was agreeable to the Board.
At there were no more comments or discussion to be had, Mrs. Vitale made a motion to approve this application with the condition on the curb cuts, this was seconded by Mr. Harman and approved by the following roll call vote:
Ayes: Mayor Thomas Nicol, James Harman, Thomas Heavey, James
Langenberger, Charles Sarnasi, Terre Vitale
The final application for the evening was an application for variance for Block 107.04, Lot 3, known as 1101 Aileen Road, owned by John O’Donnell & Sharon Heine Butler-O’Donnell, to allow demolition of an existing structure & construction of a new single family dwelling & detached garage. Front Setback Sunset Drive – 40 feet required, 30.61 feet proposed, 9.39 foot variance requested. Lot Coverage – 20% maximum allowed, 21.3% proposed, 1.3% variance requested. Lot Size (corner) – 15,625 square feet required, 14,272 square feet existing, 1,353 square foot variance existing & proposed. Lot Width (corner) 125 feet required, 102 feet existing, 23 foot variance existing & proposed.
Before this hearing started, Mayor Nicol stepped off the dais as his property is within 200 feet of this property and he would not be eligible to hear this matter.
The fee of $400 was paid, taxes are paid to date and the property owners within 200 feet as well as the newspaper were properly notified. Mr. John M. Marmora came forward to represent these applicants.
Before starting, the following were marked as exhibits: Exhibit A-1 was the site plan, Exhibit A-2 the elevations, Exhibit A-3, 4 photos, Exhibit A-4, a board of 4 photos, Exhibit A-5, 4 photos of the neighborhood, Exhibit A-6, another 4 photos of the neighborhood.
Also present were the applicants, their Engineer, Raymond Carpenter & their Architect Paul Grabowski. Mr. Carpenter came forward and was sworn in, he is a Licensed Professional Engineer in New Jersey, Florida and Pennsylvania and is a Licensed Planner who has been before this Board before; the Board accepted him as an expert witness.
Mr. Carpenter said there are several pre-existing conditions to be considered under the C-1 and C-2 criteria; this is an existing undersized corner lot and the new variances, as shown on Exhibit A-1, are marked in blue. There is a problem as there are two front yard setbacks due to the corner lot. The green area shows the 10 foot gap between the right-of-way and the property line; if you measured the setbacks to the paved right-of-way the lot would meet the required setbacks and the lot would meet the coverage requirement as well.
Exhibit A-2 is a colored elevation done by the architect, Paul Grabowski and is in keeping with the homes in the neighborhood and complies with the C-2 criteria. Exhibit A-3 are 4 photos of the existing home viewed from Aileen Road and Exhibit A-4 shows the odd position of the house, as well as the back of the home and the neighbors. They want to demolish this home and build a new one facing Sunset Drive.
Going back to Exhibit A-1, the pink lines show the variances that affect the neighbors; there are no objectors to this application and the new home will be less intrusive for the neighboring lots. Exhibit A-5 are the homes on Sunset Drive which are handsome homes. Exhibit A-6 shows homes on Shore Drive, the small photos are the old homes and the large photos are the new homes that replaced them. If this were a conforming lot there would be no variances needed.
Mr. Condon asked what the current coverage is and Mr. Marmora said 18% now and is being increased to 21%, the attached garage is what is making this coverage go over. Mr. Carpenter noted the back year setback will not be encroaching into other yards any more with the new home, the lot is an odd size and it was difficult to design a home here. There are no sidewalks in this area so the right-of-way is not really shown, it looks like part of the lot, so they really do have 40 feet to the roadway. He did not think the home is onerous for this corner lot and they are eliminating two existing variances as well as providing more parking with the new garage and driveway, which in total can accommodate 6 to 8 cars; there are a lot of pluses in this application.
Mr. Hilla had a question on the drainage and Mr. Carpenter explained they are proposing to pitch the roof drains to Sunset Drive with the garage pitching toward Aileen Road; part of the garage goes in this direction now, but this new drainage will be much better than what is there at this time. This application will not have an impact on the Master Plan or Zoning Ordinance in Brielle and the benefits outweigh the detriments.
Mr. Langenberger asked what will be over the garage and will there be plumbing. Mr. Marmora said there will be no plumbing and the area over the garage will be for storage only. He also said they will stipulate that drainage plans be approved by the Board Engineer.
Mr. Condon asked about the square foot coverage of the covered porch so Paul Grabowski came forward and was sworn in, he is employed by Virtuoso Architects and has testified before this Board; he was accepted as an expert witness. He answered Mr. Condon’s question with the answer of 617 square feet. Mr. Condon noted that without the porch this coverage would be below 20% and Mr. Grabowski agreed. Mr. Condon wanted it to be put in the Resolution that the porch will never be enclosed.
At this time the hearing was opened to the public for questions only and Mary Cato of 1009 Sunset Drive came forward and was concerned about the drainage. After a further explanation she felt this may work out and Mr. Heavey assured her that this will be done subject to the Board Engineer’s approval. As there were no further questions, that portion of the hearing was closed and was again open for general comments.
Mayor Nicol came forward and was sworn in and he asked the O’Donnells if they have spoken to the post office about a change of address and they said they had not as yet. Mayor Nicol recommended they do so as he gets complaints about changing of addresses. As there were no further comments by the public, that portion of the hearing was closed. Mr. Marmora also noted that there are reports from the Police Department and Fire Department with no problems cited for this application.
The Board then went into discussion and Mr. Harman said he liked the application, Mr. Langenberger agreed and felt this will be a big plus for the neighborhood. Mrs. Vitale felt they went out of their way to try to conform and Mr. Sarnasi felt this will be an asset to the neighborhood. Mr. Condon agreed with the other Board members and would be in favor of this application as long as they stay as close to 20% as possible, thus, the porch will need to be kept open.
At this time Mr. Langenberger made a motion to approve this application, subject to drainage plans being approved by the Board Engineer and the stipulation that the porch not be enclosed. This motion was seconded by Mrs. Vitale and approved by the following roll call vote:
Ayes: Thomas Condon, James Harman, Thomas Heavey, James
Langenberger, Charles Sarnasi, Terre Vitale
As there was no other business to come before the Board, a motion to adjourn was made by Mr. Condon, seconded by Mrs. Vitale and unanimously approved, all aye. The meeting was adjourned at 8:59 pm.
Karen S. Brisben, Recording Secretary