City of Lake Forest Building Review Board met January 3.
City of Lake Forest Building Review Board met January 3.
Here is the minutes provided by the Board:
A regular meeting of the Lake Forest Building Review Board was held on Wednesday, January 3, 2018 at 6:30 p.m., at City Hall, 220 E. Deerpath, Lake Forest, Illinois.
Building Review Board members present: Chairman Ted Notz and Board members Robert Reda, Peter Dunne, Chris Bires and Ross Friedman
Building Review Board members absent: Board members Jim Diamond and Fred Moyer
Staff present: Michelle Friedrich, Planning Technician and Catherine Czerniak, Director of Community Development
1. Introduction of Board members and staff, overview of meeting procedures – Chairman Notz
Chairman Notz reviewed the role of the Building Review Board and the meeting procedures followed by the Board. He asked the members of the Board and staff to introduce themselves.
2. Consideration of the minutes of the December 6, 2017 meeting of the Building Review Board.
The minutes of the December 6, 2017 meeting were approved with one correction as requested by Chairman Notz.
3. Continued consideration of a request for approval of demolition of an existing detached garage, approval of a two-story addition including an attached garage and first and second floor living space, and related alterations at 91 Washington Circle.
Owners: Carl and Nanette Jenkins
Representative: Bob Gebelhoff, designer
Chairman Notz introduced the project. He asked the Board members for any Ex Parte contacts or conflicts of interest noting that at the December, 2016 meeting he disclosed that he is friends with the petitioners but is able to objectively review the petition.
Board member Dunne noted that he too is friends with the petitioners, but noted that he has no financial interest in the property or project.
Chairman Notz invited a presentation from the petitioner.
Mr. Jenkins noted that the petition was before the Board in December and as a follow up to that meeting, a rendering was provided to staff for circulation to the Board members as requested.
Ms. Czerniak reviewed that at the December meeting, some Board members questioned whether the proposed addition was stepped back from the front plane of the main house a sufficient distance to preserve the integrity and prominence of the original Four Square design. She confirmed that the rendering submitted by the petitioner was circulated to the Board electronically and is included in the Board’s packet. She stated that additions to historic homes should appear as secondary, stepped back and down from the main mass, to allow the original structure to be distinguished from the later addition. She noted that in response to Board comments from the last meeting, the design of the addition was refined to remove the arch at the secondary entrance and the detail of the wall linking the original house and the addition was enhanced.
In response to questions from Board member Reda, Mr. Jenkins confirmed that the fascia board on the addition will match the fascia on the existing house.
In response to questions from Board member Reda, Mr. Gebelhoff explained that the fascia and frieze boards on the porch are intended to visually appear as a single element. He confirmed that the overhang is wider at the secondary entrance to provide a link between the garage and existing house.
Board Friedman noted that the frieze board and the fascia should be consistent around the house. He reiterated that it is important to maintain the dominance of the original structure and noted that to do so, the addition must appear as subservient to the original Four Square house. He acknowledged that in accordance with that goal, the garage doors were simplified since the last meeting. He stated that to preserve the importance of the five columns on the front porch of the existing house, the secondary entrance on the addition should not be detailed with columns. He noted the importance of enhanced landscaping in order to mitigate the appearance of the addition and preserve the prominence of the original house.
In response to questions from Board member Friedman, Mr. Jenkins stated that they are currently working with two landscapers to develop a landscape plan.
Chairman Notz stated that the rendering is helpful and documents the intent to de-emphasize the addition. He deferred to other Board members on the appropriateness of the columns on the secondary entry. He stated support for the project. Hearing no further questions from the Board, he invited public comments. Hearing none, he invited final questions and comments from the Board. Hearing none, he invited a motion from the Board.
Board member Reda made a motion to recommend approval of the demolition of the garage.
The motion was seconded by Board member Bires and was approved by a 5 to 0 vote.
Board member Reda made a motion to recommend approval of the two story addition and related alterations subject to the following conditions.
1. The plans submitted for permit shall be consistent with the image reflected in the rendering and in particular, with the depiction of the addition as a secondary mass to the original residence. A subcommittee of the Board shall assist staff in review of the construction drawings to assure that they align with the conceptual rendering presented by the petitioner and with the discussion and direction from the Board.
• Columns shall be eliminated at the secondary entry to preserve the prominence of the existing Four Square residence.
2. Construction shall proceed consistent with the intent reflected in the rendering presented to the Board in which the two story addition appears secondary to the original house.
3. If modifications are made to the plans as a result of final design development or in response to direction from the Board, the modifications shall be clearly called out on the plan and a copy of the plan originally provided to the Board shall be attached for comparison purposes. Staff is directed to review any changes, in consultation with the Board subcommittee, to determine whether the modifications are in conformance with the Board’s direction and approval prior to the issuance of any permits.
4. Details of exterior lighting, if any, in particular, any lights on the roof terrace or north elevation of the house, shall be submitted at the time of submittal for permit. Specifications and cut sheets for all exterior light fixtures proposed shall be submitted and will be subject to a determination by staff that the fixtures are in full compliance with the City Lighting Guidelines. Fixtures shall direct light down and all light sources shall be fully screened from view. The dark sky, right to night concept shall be followed, all exterior lights, except for security lights and lights on motion detectors, shall be on an automatic timer to turn off no later than 11 p.m.
4. A vegetation removal plan and a landscape plan shall be submitted prior to the issuance of a building permit. The landscape plan shall detail all plantings proposed for the north property line and plantings planned in the front yard along Washington Circle to help mitigate the mass of the two story addition from the streetscape. The plan shall reflect any overland drainage routes or drainage structures to avoid conflicts between landscaping and drainage. The plan will be subject to review and approval by the City’s Certified Arborist.
5. Prior to the issuance of a building permit, a plan to protect any trees identified for preservation during construction must be submitted and will be subject to review and approval by the City’s Certified Arborist.
6. Prior to the issuance of a building permit, a materials staging and construction vehicle parking plan must be submitted to the City for review and will be subject to City approval in an effort to minimize and manage impacts on the neighborhood during construction and to minimize impacts on trees intended for preservation. On street parking is limited to two vehicles adjacent to the property on Washington Circle or on Ryan Place due to the proximity to the corner and narrow streets. Clear sightlines at the adjacent intersection must maintained at all times.
The motion was seconded by Board member Friedman and was approved by a vote of 5 to 0.
4. Consideration of a request for approval of the design aspects of a proposed commercial development, Waterway Car Wash, including gas pumps and a convenience store. The property proposed for development is located on the southeast corner of Waukegan and Everett Roads and is commonly referred to as the former site of a gas station and garden store. The Board’s purview includes the design, exterior materials and architectural detailing of all proposed structures. In addition, the Board will consider the landscaping, lighting and signage plans with attention to mitigating impacts on residential properties to the east and south, and enhancing the streetscapes.
Property Owner: IP Properties Lake Forest LLC
Ownership Representative: Alexander D. Stuart
Business Ownership Representatives: Henry Dubinsky, Waterway Owner
Michael Goldman, Waterway V.P./Counsel
Architect: Jay Suhoessel, SP Architects
738 Westport Plaza
St. Louis, MO 63146
Chairman Notz introduced the project. He asked the Board members for any Ex Parte contacts or conflicts of interest. Hearing none, he invited a presentation from the petitioner.
Mr. Goldman introduced the project on behalf of Waterway and introduced the project architect.
Mr. Suhoessel provided an overview of the site plan noting the location of the building in which the car wash and convenience store will be located and the location of the gas pumps. He stated that the building is designed using details and materials that are in keeping with the character of the surrounding area. He noted the similarity of the architectural design and exterior materials to other buildings in the area. He stated that cast stone, with a thickness of four inches, is proposed at the base of the building because of its durability. He stated that the west façade of the building will have a typical retail appearance with an aluminum storefront system and clear glass windows. He noted that the center of the west façade steps forward to identify the customer entrance. He reviewed the proposed materials noting that architectural asphalt shingles are proposed for the roof and a synthetic material is proposed for the trim for durability and ease of maintenance. He stated that the trim will appear as wood. He reviewed the north and south elevations commenting that they are similar to the west elevation with the exception of the aluminum frame doors at the entrance and exit to the wash bay. He reviewed the east elevation noting that it has no fenestration as a sound mitigation measure adding that the east elevation is not visible from the streetscape. He reviewed the roof plan noting that a mansard roof surrounds a well within which small scale mechanical equipment will be located. He reviewed the canopy proposed over the gas pumps. He reviewed the proposed sign locations on the building, the canopy and on the site. He noted that a wood fence with masonry columns is proposed along the east and south property lines near the gas pumps and parking area. He presented the landscape and lighting plans noting that consultants are available to speak to the detail of those elements.
Ms. Czerniak stated that the project was previously considered by the Plan Commission because the proposed uses require a Special Use Permit. She noted that the City Council preliminarily considered the Commission’s recommendation and directed the Building Review Board to consider the project prior to final Council action. She noted that in particular, the City Council asked the Board to pay particular attention to the proposed lighting, signage and landscaping, in addition to review of the building, recognizing that the site is adjacent to residential development to the east and south, and recognizing that the site is located prominently at the entrance to the Waukegan Road business district. She noted that by nature, a car wash requires a linear building and reviewed the proposed use of a mixture of natural and synthetic materials for the exterior. She asked for Board input on the roof form acknowledging that it is configured to screen the roof top mechanicals. She noted that gable elements appear to be located around the building primarily to provide an opportunity for signage. She commented that the landscape plan provides detailed information on the enhanced landscaping proposed along the streetscapes. She noted that the plan identifies some plantings on the neighboring properties but noted that any removal of existing vegetation or plantings on neighboring properties could only occur with the agreement of those property owners. She stated that more detail is needed on the proposed lighting and suggested that consideration be given to shorter light poles and drop down shields on lights located adjacent to residential properties. She added that details should also be provided on any lighting planned on the building itself. She stated that after the close of business, lights should be turned off except for those deemed necessary for safety and security purposes. She suggested that the Board’s recommendation could include an after-hours lighting reduction plan. She stated that consideration should be given to eliminating signage on the south side of the canopy over the gas pumps to avoid direct views of the signage from the condominiums to the south. She noted that overall, the signage as proposed exceeds the signage permitted on a corner parcel. She added that the signage as proposed is internally illuminated and suggested that internal illumination may not be appropriate for all of the signs adding that often the Board has supported backlighting and ground lighting of signage. She noted that the staff report includes a number of questions and recommendations and requested Board direction on the petition. She stated that Board action on the petition is not recommended at this time.
In response to questions from Board member Dunne, Mr. Suhoessel confirmed that the trim boards will be painted and will flank each window. He explained that wood was considered for the trim but noted that for durability, a synthetic product is proposed. He stated that the material will remain sharp and new looking noting that although there will be some weathering over time, it will not be to the extent that would occur with wood.
Board member Dunne stated that signage should be carefully considered and limited in areas where it may not be necessary.
In response to questions from Board member Dunne, Mr. Goldman explained that the east elevation of the building is solid and constructed of stone block to mitigate noise from the car wash. He reviewed the planned construction of the car wash tunnel noting that enhanced walls and a sound deadening chamber are planned. He added that high-speed doors will be used at the entrance and exit to the car wash to mitigate sound. He acknowledged that during peak times, the high speed doors will not close between each car. He stated that the various sound mitigation measures that are proposed go beyond those used at other locations. He stated that the condenser for the vacuum equipment will be located inside the building, not outside like at other car washes. He stated that directly east of the building, space may not allow for a fence but noted that the solid wall and existing vegetation mitigate the need for a fence in this area.
Collen Barkley, Mariani Landscape, confirmed that she has met with the owner of the 1025 Everett Road property and they have an agreement for some shared landscaping along the area of the proposed building, so help soften the east side of the building. She noted that she met with the City Arborist and there is a consistent plan for the length of the east side of the property.
Board member Dunne suggested that the brick wall on the east elevation should be softened with landscaping.
In response to questions from Board member Dunne, Mr. Goldman reviewed the proposed operating hours for the car wash.
In response to questions from Board member Friedman, Mr. Goldman noted that there will be only limited queuing of cars at the entrance to the car wash because cars can be moved through the wash very quickly. He noted that there are multiple detailing stations at the exit to accommodate cars and pointed out that the process is very orderly given the years of experience. He stated that in the winter, the site will be heavily salted to minimize any icing on the pavement. He stated that the exits will be kept free of ice.
Ms. Barkley noted that the site will be curbed to prevent runoff of salt into the planting beds. She added that the plants will be selected for tolerance given the proximity to Waukegan and Everett Roads.
In response to questions from Board member Friedman, Mr. Goldman noted the he was at the Northbrook location earlier in the day and the windows made of poly carbonite windows in the winter were clear. He noted that the storefront windows aren’t an issue for freezing either.
In response to questions from Board member Friedman, Mr. Goldman confirmed that the proposed fence is 10 feet tall.
Ms. Czerniak noted that a ten foot tall fence was recommended by the Plan Commission based on the testimony presented. She stated that initially, a shorter fence was proposed by the petitioner.
Board member Friedman noted that ordinarily, the Board recommends natural materials for building exteriors consistent with the City’s Design Guidelines but noted that in this case, use of a synthetic material for the trim is appropriate given the use of the building and the likelihood of high moisture conditions.
In response to questions from Board member Reda, Mr. Goldman stated that the fence will likely be cedar.
Board member Reda reviewed the recommendations detailed in the staff report.
In response to questions from Board member Reda, Mr. Goldman stated that until construction drawings are prepared, the exact number, size and location of roof top mechanical units will not be known. He pointed out the location of the trash and recycling area noting that it is located near the building, away from the neighboring residential properties, and will be fully enclosed. He confirmed that the brick and stone on the building exterior will be a minimum of four inches thick and will be installed on site, using standard methods.
In response to questions from Board member Reda, Mr. Suhoessel confirmed that the storefront windows will be consistent around the building.
Ms. Barkley reviewed the landscaping proposed along the south and east perimeters of the property and commented on the existing and proposed landscaping on the neighboring parcels. She noted that the area along some portions of the property lines is in shade so shade tolerant plants are proposed for those areas. She stated that they are actively working with the owner of the office parcel to the east to determine how best to build upon the existing landscaping and stated that the petitioners intend to work with the neighboring residents as well as the plan continues to develop.
In response to questions from Board member Reda, Ms. Czerniak confirmed that the signage as proposed exceeds the allowed square footage. She stated that the Board can recommend approval of signage in excess of what is permitted in the Code if it determines additional signage is appropriate.
In response to questions from Board member Reda, Mr. Goldman stated that the proposed colors on the signage will be clarified acknowledging that the materials presented to the Board indicate inconsistent color schemes. He stated that typically, the company signs have blue letters, not white. He confirmed that the letters are internally illuminated with individual fixtures.
Board member Reda expressed concern with the proposed internal illumination and the number of signs.
In response to questions from the Board, Mr. Goldman stated that signage is needed on the canopy to allow the business to be successful. He stated that the lighting under the canopy will be flush mounted to avoid spillover on to adjacent properties. He introduced the project’s lighting consultant, Rich Haden.
Mr. Haden stated that the proposed plan reflects the estimated foot candles and represents what is needed on the site. He explained that the light provided by a full moon is equivalent to one foot candle. He stated that the parking lot lights have a low profile, forward throw optics and shields on the lights to block light spill to the neighboring properties.
In response to questions from Board member Bires, Mr. Goldman presented samples of the proposed glass, brick color, cast stone and the prefinished metal. He stated that no samples are available of the synthetic materials.
In response to questions from Board member Bires, Mr. Suhoessel confirmed that clear glass is proposed on the storefront in prefinished, bronze colored metal frames.
In response to questions from Board member Bires, Mr. Goldman described the menu boards that will be located on the columns of the canopy and on the building and stated that no lighting is proposed for those signs.
In response to questions from Board member Bires, Ms. Barkley confirmed that sightlines for traffic were considered while developing the proposed landscape plan. She noted that the height of the plantings gradually steps up away from the intersection and the driveways.
In response to questions from Board member Bires, Mr. Haden explained that as proposed, the light poles are 18 feet tall with a two foot light attached to the top for an overall height of 20 feet. He noted that two light poles are proposed along the south and east property lines, all with drop down shields. He added that the 10 foot fence will be located the full length of the property lines adjacent to the residential development. He stated that a single light pole is proposed along the north property line, adjacent to Everett Road. He stated that a drop down shield will be installed on that light as well.
In response to questions from Board member Bires, Mr. Goldman stated that the pole lights in the parking lot will be turned off after business hours. He stated that only security lights will remain on overnight.
In response to questions from Chairman Notz, Mr. Haden stated that an 18 foot tall pole is needed to allow the limited number of LED lights proposed on the site to throw sufficient light on the property without lighting the surrounding area. He stated that there will be no glow from the lighting because the light will all be directed down on to the property.
Mr. Goldman added that it is important that there are no dark spots on the site. He stated that shorter poles could be considered but additional lights may be needed to provide the necessary coverage.
Chairman Notz encouraged the petitioner to explore the use of shorter light poles.
In response to questions from Chairman Notz, Ms. Czerniak confirmed that at the direction of the Plan Commission, the seven foot fence originally proposed was increased in height to 10 feet.
Chairman Notz questioned whether a 10 foot fence will be tall enough to prevent headlights from impacting the residential areas. He also noted that the proper balance will need to be achieved between providing a sufficient barrier from noise and light and softening the fence with landscaping to assure that it is appropriate from the neighboring residential properties.
Ms. Czerniak suggested that headlight studies could be requested from the petitioner to illustrate the direction of headlights from cars pulling into the site in relation to the proposed 10 foot fence.
In response to questions from Chairman Notz, Mr. Suhoessel stated that there will be two to three heating and air conditioning units located in the well on the roof. He stated that it may be possible to increase the height of the roof to deepen the well. He stated that he is reluctant to remove the gable ends.
In response to questions from Board member Friedman, Mr. Goldman confirmed that there will not be a generator on the site.
In response to questions from Chairman Notz, Mr. Goldman described the sound deadening chamber, the blowers and the sound attenuation finishing room beyond the blowers. He stated that the blowers are pulled back 25 feet from the exit door and pointed out that no activity occurs in the finishing room. He stated that the purpose of the finishing room is to serve as a sound buffer. He noted that the walls and ceiling of the area around the blowers are thickened with baffling materials. He stated that the baffling material in the finishing room will be soft fiberglass material in a perforated metal panel. He stated that the material is used outside and can withstand moisture. He confirmed that the trash area was moved close to the building in response to concerns raised by neighboring residents. He reviewed the location of the proposed fence and landscaping. He stated that consideration could be given to a pattern in the bricks to break up the east elevation.
Hearing no further questions from the Board, Chairman Notz invited public comments.
Mary Ann Redding, 1541 Kathryn Lane, stated that the landscaping as proposed is not tall enough and is not consistent with Lake Forest noting that the site appears more industrial than park-like. She suggested that the petitioner seek input from the Lake Forest Garden Club noting that the Club is well versed in what the community expects. She suggested that eight foot Arbor Vitae would be appropriate on the east side of the site. She stated that her dream is that a bold and dynamic building should be located on this site. She stated that she lives in the Evergreen Subdivision and noted that homes in the area are carefully considered by the Homeowners’ Association to make sure that they are compatible with the surrounding architecture.
David Kaz, 1045 Mar Lane Drive, stated concerns about the proposed lighting on the site. He stated that he met with residents in Northbrook who live near the Waterway Car Wash. He stated that light impacts the second floor of residences in the area adding that the houses are 300 feet away from that site. He stated that the hours of operation of the car wash should be limited to the hours of operation of the car wash in east Lake Forest. He noted that the light poles in Northbrook are 18 to 20 feet tall and a wall or fence will not prevent off site light impacts.
Kent Carson, 1180 Lynette Drive, stated that he has lived in Lake Forest for 35 years. He stated that he is a professional in the petroleum industry. He stated that a wood fence will not withstand the activity on the site noting that cars and trucks will bump into it and damage it. He stated that a brick or stone fence would be a better solution.
Richard Sugar, 1059 Mar Lane Drive, stated that his house is about 20 feet from the Waterway site. He complimented the Board on the due diligence demonstrated in the discussion so far. He pointed out that Waterway has 19 other locations and they all face highways and are not located as close to residential development as would occur with the current proposal. He stated that Waterway has not approached the Lake Forest Chateau homeowners about enhanced landscaping so it is unclear what is planned on the resident’s side of the fence. He stated support for a wall instead of a fence to help mitigate noise. He noted that the building as proposed is not easily adaptable to other uses in the event that Waterway leaves the site. He suggested that the City should require a bond to assure that the site is not left as an eyesore. He pointed out that the ownership of the property is a single purpose LLC.
Jim Monroe, 1030 Mar Lane Drive, stated that the sound attenuation proposed in the finishing room is untested technology along with the rapid closing doors. He stated that the door is fabric and will not mitigate sound.
Rudy Schwartz, 1036 Mar Lane Drive, stated that he lives in the house that is located closest to the site. He stated that a concrete wall, rather than a wooded fence should be required. He stated concern about light impacts.
Gary Span, 1111 S. Waukegan Road, stated that he lives in the condominiums located to the south of the site. He questioned how the site will be regraded noting that currently, there is about a four foot difference between the north and south ends of the site. He asked that the signage be consistent with other signage in the area noting that the monument sign as proposed, exceeds the size permitted in the Code.
Walter Wade, 1028 Mar Lane Drive, stated that any landscaping that is planted must be maintained on a weekly basis. He questioned what will happen if the sound deadening chamber does not work.
Hearing no further public comment, Chairman Notz invited a response to public comment from the petitioner.
Mr. Goldman noted that the concept of the sound deadening chamber came from the sound engineer. He noted that the building was elongated and the blowers were pulled back from the exit. He stated that the sound engineer modeled the decibel level reduction that is achieved with the proposed mitigation measures. He explained that at ten feet, wood was thought to be a better material for the fence along the south and east property lines than a massive ten foot brick or stone wall. He noted that the sound engineer agrees that a board on board fence, without any gaps, is as good as a brick or stone wall from a sound mitigation perspective. He stated that Waterway has won awards for the landscaping done on sites in other communities. He stated that regular maintenance is performed on Waterway sites. He stated that Waterway representatives met with the residential neighbors but acknowledged that no discussions have occurred to date about the proposed landscaping on the neighboring properties. He explained that the site will be leveled off by bringing the north end of the site down. He stated that the stormwater management plan was reviewed by the Plan Commission noting that drainage facilities will be added to improve drainage of the site beyond what exists today.
In response to a question from Board member Friedman, Mr. Goldman stated that the building will not be stepped.
In response to questions from the Board, Mr. Goldman noted that a cool white light is proposed.
In response to questions from Chairman Notz, Ms. Czerniak confirmed that an acoustical engineer was hired by the City to study the proposed plan. She noted that the Plan Commission recommended conditions to the City Council that would require monitoring of the sound levels to assure that specified standards are met. She noted that ambient noise levels in the area, at different times of day, were factored into the study. She acknowledged that the building does not easily lend itself to adaptive reuse and noted that the Commission addressed that issue by recommending a condition requiring removal of the improvements if the business closes.
Hearing no further comments from the Board, Chairman Notz invited a motion from the Board.
Board member Reda made a motion to continue the petition to allow the petitioner to further detail the plan in the areas discussed by the Board, explore options and make modifications to address the concerns raised. He noted that the petitioner should look to the staff report for guidance on other items that should be addressed.
The motion was seconded by Board member Friedman and approved by a vote of 5 to 0.
4. Opportunity for the public to address the Building Review Board on non-agenda items.
There was no additional public testimony presented to the Board.
5. Additional information from staff.
No additional information from staff.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:47 p.m.