Planning and Zoning Board Meeting
May 19, 2022 at 5:45 p.m.
Zoom Meeting Application was Utilized for the Meeting
Planning and Zoning Members Present
Randy Iaboni, Chair
Jon Moore, Vice Chair
William Price, III
Planning and Zoning Members Absent
Paul Marchese resigned
Marisa Powers, Assistant City Attorney
Brad Cornelius, Consulting Planner, Wade Trim
Kera Hill, Planning Analyst
Penny Johnston- Executive Assistant
Chairman Randy Iaboni called the meeting to order at 5:45 p.m., followed by a moment of silence and the Pledge of Allegiance. Roll call showed only Paul Marchese was absent, as he had submitted his resignation May 11, 2022. All people intending to address the Planning and Zoning Board were duly sworn.
1. PLANNING & ZONING BOARD AGENDA APPROVAL
MOTION: Mr. Price moved, Mr. Moore seconded, and the motion carried 4-0 to approve the May 19, 2022 Agenda as written.
2. APPROVAL OF MEETING MINUTES
MOTION: Mr. Moore moved, Mr. Price seconded, and the motion carried 4-0 to approve the February 17, 2022 minutes.
3. Election of 2022 Officers for Planning and Zoning Board
Ms. Roberts had made a motion during the February 17 meeting for Mr. Price to be Chairman, but Mr. Price was absent. Ms. Roberts withdrew her motion, and made a new motion.
MOTION: Ms. Roberts moved, Mr. Price seconded and the motion carried 4-0 to allow the current officers to finish this term and revisit the election in January 2023.
4. DOWNTOWN ALTERNATIVE PROPOSAL (B.CORNELIUS)
A Downtown Alternative Proposal was received from En-Vision America for the proposed expansion building for the business located at 825 4th Street West.
Mr. Brad Cornelius stated the proposal to build a warehouse with metal skin is not equivalent or superior to what is required. Staff feels the large metal building does not meet downtown code design standards and is not recommending. Mr. Cornelius opined warehouse distribution is not consistent with zoning, and the garage façade on 9th Avenue is a concern. Staff is also concerned with truck traffic on 9th Avenue.
Mr. Iaboni inquired if design guidelines are enforceable regulations. He asked how to enforce conditions if the applicant does not follow agreed variances. Ms. Powers replied Code Enforcement and appropriate departments in Public Works would be able to react. Mrs. Hill added downtown alternative proposals do not go before the Commission.
Mr. Robert Gause, owner of Gause & Associates stated the applicant was recruited by the CRA and Manatee County EDC in 2015 to come to Palmetto. The existing En-Vision headquarters is a metal building. En-Vision business is growing, they are hiring more staff and hope to continue to grow. Metal buildings are more affordable, but the design can mimic the façade that is already there. Mr. Gause showed photos of surrounding properties to include an abandoned restaurant, a boat yard surrounded by a 6-foot security chain link fence, a duplex or apartment units, It-Works!, and a large boat trailer parking lot.
The big garage door is to accommodate a fork truck to unload product. Large trucks would only be parked on 9th Avenue for 15 - 20 minutes, maybe 2 - 3 times a month to unload a couple pallets. Mr. Gause opined the existing En-Vision building is currently the best looking building on the block.
Randy Iaboni confirmed the new structure will be used for offices as well as a warehouse.
Owner David Rastrech purchased the property because they liked the extra space to allow growth. They removed two dilapidated buildings that were there. They had full approval from the CRA, and the CRA was aware that this business planned to expand.
William Price asked about distance from the road and sidewalk. Mr. Gause stated they are not asking for a variance. Mr. Gause opined moving the rolling door to a different elevation may not change the big truck traffic, but may just impact parking and create a longer time to unload.
OPEN PUBLIC COMMENT
CLOSED PUBLIC COMMENT
Mr. Price agreed with the planner. Ms. Roberts agreed with Mr. Iaboni. Mr. Moore could support the plan if they could minimize the impact on 9th Avenue. Mr. Iaboni stated traffic on 9th is already a problem, but not En-Visions problem.
Mr. Gause stated a point of clarification- the CRA did not fund the building. The code is to protect and improve property values and provide investor confidence to provide continuity. They are asking permission to use a metal building rather than masonry. There is already a metal building on the site, trying to expand the existing use. They are asking for the layout to be approved.
MOTION: Mr. Price moved, that based upon the purpose and intents of the downtown core design code and the evidence presented today, to recommend denial the DAP 2022-02 but the motion failed for lack of a second.
MOTION: Mr. Price moved, Ms. Roberts seconded, based upon the evidence presented today, to continue the request of whether the design proposal is superior or equivalent to the downtown core design code specifically 4.4 (b.1), and the motion passed 3-1 to continue the determination of this application for 60 days to give the applicant an opportunity to amend the alternative design proposal. Mr. Iaboni voted nay.
Ms. Powers added the applicant may come back prior to the 60 days is they are able.
Mr. Price would like them to change the façade of the western elevation so that it does not appear to function as a warehouse. Perhaps putting the big rolling door on the north side would be acceptable.
5. NEW BUSINESS
6. OLD BUSINESS
Chairman Randy Iaboni adjourned the meeting at 6:48 p.m.