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March 3, 2011

Minutes

The March 3, 2011 Special meeting of the Point Pleasant Beach Board of Adjustment opened at 7:30 pm. The clerk read the notice of compliance with the "Open Public Meetings Act. Present were regular members: Mr. Wolfersberger, Mr. Kelly, Mr. Renner and Chairman Struncius Alternates: Mr. Ardito
Absent: Palisi, Reilly, Spader and Reynolds

Motion by Mr. Wolfersberger, second by Mr. Kelly to memorialize the action and vote approving application #2010-29 of Kenneth Miscia with conditions.

In favor: Wolfersberger, Kelly, Ardito and Struncius


Motion by Mr. Wolfersberger, second by Mr. Kelly to memorialize the action and vote approving application #2010-17 or Rachel Harrigan with conditions

In favor –Wolfersberger, Kelly, Ardito and Struncius

Motion by Mr. Wolfersberger, second by Mr. Kelly to memorialize the action and vote approving application ##2010-09 of Robert and Kathy Maloney with conditions

In Favor: Wolfersberger, Kelly and Struncius

Application #2011-03 – 1500 Richmond Avenue Associates – 1500 Richmond Avenue- Block 13.02; Lot 8 – Applicant wishes to demolish one of two buildings on lot and erect a free standing LED sign.
John Jackson, attorney for applicant. Project originally approved by Planning Board. Ultimate plan is to redevelop the whole site. Concept is an electronic sign that can service all of the potential uses on the site. The location where Emma’s is located is a separate lot and requires a variance because a lot with just a sign is usually considered a billboard. There is another building located on this lot. Steve Ardito questioned the area circled “if it is all one big parcel”. (No – lot 8 contains the two structures)) Applicants believe removal of the building will make the new building more visible. Illuminated portion of sign will only be visible to south bound traffic.
Christine A. Cofone, Professional Planner, sworn, credentials accepted. Application is very straight forward. Applicant’s proposal is to remove one non-conforming building and establish a 31 foot tall 258 square foot LED sign. A-3 Entered -Colored exhibit of sign. Sign will advertise tenant and future tenants. Variances - 31 feet where Height of building or 25 feet is required; off site premises sign; side setback (10 feet requested where 5 feet is allowed. HC zone, opportunity to encourage redevelopment of site. Residential uses are discouraged in this area in the Master Plan. Obligation to demonstrate that special reasons exist; Criteria H and I are met. Landscaping and stone are great components at the base of the sign. C-2 variance for sign is a good idea because it incorporates all the businesses on one sign. Christine Cofone does not believe that size of sign will be offensive to the zone. Sign will face south bound traffic; present building is non-conforming (setbacks and use); Impervious coverage will be reduced. When you evaluate criteria on this application it does bring the site into more of what the Master Plan envisioned for this corner. Clearly the benefits outweigh the detriments and this brings the corner more into conformity. Removal of this building will increase the free flow of traffic because at this time it is in the site triangle. Ray Savacool clarified that the actual size of the entire sign is 273 square feet. A- 4 – Picture of Emma’s building. John Jackson commented that he had a discussion with the DOT which stated that any sign advertising something that is not on the same lot and block is an off premise sign which the DOT considers a billboard and that even if the Board approves the sign they will also need approval from the DOT. The DOT said that if the lots (lots 8 and lot 1) were consolidated their permission would not be needed and that is what the applicant is going to do. Christine Cofone stated that the LED portion of the sign is less than 20% of the entire sign. John Jackson stated that it is going to be a four colored sign. Mr. Kelly questioned the conformity of the other signs on the lots. Ray Savacool said the spirit sign conforms and The Spot sign also conforms. Mr. Kelly asked if they are keeping all the signs (yes). Ray Savacool inquired about the two trees they are removing. Millis J. Looney replied that they would put two other trees on Elizabeth Avenue.

Millis J. Looney, Professional Engineer. Previously involved with the approval of The Spot. Chairman Struncius questioned the signs visibility. Provides better visibility of the buildings in that area. Mr. Renner questioned the safety in that area and how the LED will affect the area. John Jackson stated it will not be a flashing sign; he suggested an 8 second sign. Mr. Wolfersberger wants to know what will be changing; John Jackson said it might say Merlot for 8 seconds and then change. Mr. Kelly said he believes it is similar to the sign by the Fishbone Restaurant on Route 70. Mr. Kelly wants to know where the sign is controlled from if needed for an emergency. John Jackson replied that it will be controlled from the Spirit Shop. Frank Storino, principal of project, sworn. Millis J. Looney commented that all asphalt will be removed and replaced with stone. Steve Ardito questioned why the sign cannot be moved back so that it conforms; he believes that it would open up the site triangle. Millis Looney replied that the Good Year sign would block it somewhat and does not believe it would be as visible. Millis Looney stated that it can be moved back and turned slightly. Frank Storino said there is more visibility where the proposed sign is. John Jackson stated that they signs will advertise only for the applicant’s businesses located on that area.
Mr. Ardito questioned how the sign will be illuminated. (Internally) Frank Storino stated that there is landscape lighting that will shine directly down.

David Cavagnaro – Parkway Avenue – Compliment the Storino’s, his concern is the incredibly large sign. As a resident he keeps seeing a change in the character of the town. He believes the LED sign will make people look away from the road. He believes anything that attracts the public’s attention is dangerous. He believes this sign is a safety hazard. Also is there a deed restriction making sure nothing else is happening on this site?
John Jackson gave his summation. The applicant’s has a long proven track record. They are here to stay and the deliver exactly what the promise. There are a lot of upgrades associated with this business. Eliminating Emma’s building upgrades the corner. It is a big cross fire area; opening up that area is an upgrade. We have a developer who wants a viable corner. A franchise is going to want a sign. Eliminating a lot of impervious coverage and freeing up light, air and open space. The other trade off is the getting rid of the residential apartments over Emma’s. He believes this is a huge upgrade.

Deliberations

Mr. Wolfersberger – I think that the advantages outweigh any detriment. Has some reservations regarding the size of the sign. In favor
Mr. Kelly – Congratulations to the Storino’s on the two buildings there. Very happy on the upgrades; some reservation on the size of the sign. Positives outweigh negatives
Mr. Ardito – Believes there are far greater positives. Taking down building and opening up site lines. Has put controls in place with the usage of emergency signage. All in all a key component to bringing in other tenants.
Mr. Renner – Happy with plan as it stands now.

Chairman Struncius – Does not see a negative impact. With the removal of the dilapidated building a positive. Sign by Gold’s has not had a negative impact. Removal of building with 10 foot setback in favor.

Motion by Mr. Wolfersberger, second by Mr. Kelly to approve application #2011-03 of 1500 Richmond Avenue LLC with conditions
In favor : Wolfersberger, Kelly, Struncius, Ardito and Renner
Opposed – None
Conditions
1. Sign is only to face 35 south bound.
2. Sign is to be built as to what was shown to the board at the time of the hearing.
3. LED portion of the sign is limited to 43 square feet.
4. The applicant is to consolidate Lots 1 and 8 and provide a copy of the recorded Deed prior to the issuance of a building permit.
5. Sign may advertise businesses on applicant’s adjacent lots
6. The messages in the LED sign will remain unchanged for a minimum of thirty (30) seconds.
7. The LED sign is not to use the colors of red, green, or blue independently on the illuminated sign display, and it is not to be in the form of a beam beacon or flashing form resembling an emergency light.
8. The LED sign is not to roll, flash, or scroll.
9. The applicant will sign a Developer’s Agreement, which will allow for regular and emergent Police and community use, in a form acceptable to the Borough Attorney, which is to be recorded prior to the issuance of a building permit. The Developers Agreement shall include a reference to conditions 5, 6, 7, 10, 11, 12, and 15.
10. The landscaping plan is to be submitted to the Board’s Engineer for his review and approval. The landscaping plan is to show the replanting of two trees somewhere on the site with a caliper of two and a half inches.
11. Advertising on the LED sign shall be limited to the businesses located on Lots 1 and 8, as well as the properties owned by the applicant just to the north of Elizabeth Avenue.
12. The plan is to be revised to show the sign having a 10 foot setback as required by the Ordinance.


Meeting adjourned 9:33 pm

Attest: Karen L. Mills Clerk of the Board


Published April14, 2011 | Board of Adjustment Minutes | 1195


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