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May 16, 2013

Minutes

The May 16, 2013 Regular 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. Spader, Mr. Reilly, Chairman Struncius, Mr. Kelly, Mr. Reynolds and Mr. Davis
Absent - Ardito, Renner, Loder and Shamy
Memorialization of April 10, 2013 minutes – Motion by Mr. Reilly, second by Mr. Spader to memorialize the minutes of April 10, 2013
In favor: Spader, Kelly, Reilly, Struncius, Ardito and Davis
Opposed: None
Memorialization of Resolutions
McLachlan #2012-30 – 1810 Beacon Lane –Motion by Mr. Reilly, second by Mr. Ardito to memorialize the action and vote approving application #2012-30 of Morgan McLachlan with conditions.
In favor: Spader, Kelly, Reilly, Ardito and Davis.
Opposed: None
Ron Cabezas #2013-10 – 213 Washington Ave. – Motion by Mr. Reynolds, second by Mr. Kelly to memorialize the action and vote approving application #2013-10 of Ronald Cabezas with conditions.
In favor: Kelly, Reynolds and Davis
Denis LaPlante #2013-13 – 1429 Ocean Front – Motion by Mr. Reynolds, second by Mr. Kelly to memorialize the action and vote approving application 2013-13 of Denis LaPlante with conditions.
In favor: Kelly, Reynolds and Davis
Opposed: None

Application #2013-17 – Robert and Susan Festa – 6 – 7 Beachcomber Lane - Block 121; Lot 6.07 - Applicant wishes to construct a new single family dwelling at the new base flood elevation.
Mr. Reilly stepped down on the following application.
House is located in a condo association. According to the application, the applicant is seeking the following variances: side yard setback of 3.2 feet, whereas 5 feet is required; rear yard setback of 4.17 feet, whereas 5 feet is required; building height of 25 feet, whereas 20 feet is the maximum permitted. For the construction of a 1 ½ story single family dwelling, whereas 1 story single family dwellings are only permitted.
Steven A. Pardes, Esquire, applicant’s attorney, stated that the applicant’s home was damaged by Hurricane Sandy and the applicant proposes replacing the one-story home with a 1 ½ story home. The new home’s dimensions are similar to the existing home except for the additional height. The applicant proposes to move the house to the east by one (1) foot as the applicant would like to improve the size and utility of the drivew
Verity Frizzell, R.A., applicant’s architect, stated that the property is part of a Condominium Association. The Condominium Association submitted a letter approving the proposed plans. The house was a single family one-story cottage. It had three (3) bedrooms, one (1) bath, with a kitchen/ dining/living-room combination. The three bedrooms in the existing house were very small; only 7 feet x 9 feet in size. The applicant proposes to build within the same size footprint; however, the applicant will add a one-half story addition to be used as a loft bedroom. The house will continue as a three-bedroom house, but with putting one of the bedrooms into the loft area, it will enable the applicant to enlarge the size of the other two bedrooms. The first floor entrance will be located on the northwest corner of the house. Since the house needs to be elevated to meet the base flood elevation, it will require the installation of 4 steps. The configuration of the first floor level will maintain the great room (combination of the living, dining and kitchen space). There will be one bedroom in the front of the house, one bedroom toward the middle and a bathroom in the far back corner and a spiral staircase will lead to the loft bedroom and there will also be a bathroom in the loft area. The loft will remain open in the front. The façade will be made from fire resistant Hardy Plank siding and the roof will be metal. The height variance is needed because the house will be 25 feet above the street elevation. The ground slopes 3.8 feet from the ground to the house which drives the need for the height variance. The house also needs to be elevated due to the flood zone requirements. Due to the hurricane, the existing house was washed off its foundation and was moved toward their neighbor’s property. The applicant is requesting to move the new house one foot to the east which will then provide 11 feet between the two houses. Moving the house will enable the applicant to increase the width of the driveway. At the present time it is only approximately 9 feet wide and it is difficult to negotiate cars entering the driveway. The neighborhood consists mostly of cottage-type houses. There are also some two-story houses so this house will be consistent with the look of the surrounding houses. Ms. Frizzell opined that the addition of the one-half story to provide for the loft bedroom and to enlarge the size of the other two bedrooms will improve the utility of the home and will be an improvement to the housing stock of the Borough of Point Pleasant Beach.
Mary Jane Reilly, of 9 Beachcomber Lane, indicated that they are the neighbors that are most directly impacted by moving the house. She agrees that moving the house to increase the size of the applicant’s driveway will make it easier for the applicant to maneuver into the driveway and is in favor of the proposal.
Paul Ward, who has a business at 106 Ocean Avenue, is in favor of the application. He stated that he feels this is a good plan which creates a better and safer housing stock and improves the utility of the home.
Richard Massaro, who owns two (2) houses on Beachcomber Lane (house numbers 2 and 8), is in favor of this proposal. He used to own this particular house and knows that the driveway was extremely tight when trying to pull a car into the driveway. He feels that moving the house to widen the driveway will create an easier ingress into the driveway.
The Board recognizes that the variance needed for the additional height is caused by the combination of the slope of the grade by almost 4 feet and the necessity to raise the house to the new Advisory Base Flood Elevation and the proposal addresses the situation of the existing small bedrooms in an effective and modest manner. The Board determined that the house will be aesthetically pleasing and will be an improvement to the housing stock of the Borough of Point Pleasant Beach and that the house will be compliant with the base flood elevation and the house will be brought up to code both of which improve public safety and the benefits of this proposal outweigh its detriments.

Deliberations
Wolfersberger – Seems to be a trend in the bungalow section in town; modest approach, footprint essentially the same. No negative impact on neighbors. In favor
Spader – Problem is that there are height ordinances in town; some changes being made, improvement of safety and improvements are modest. Not really convinced of the hardship issue; will listen to other board members thoughts.
Kelly – Commends the architect and applicant for their presentation. Applicant has shown the elevation and renovation can be done in a modest and effective method.
Reynolds – Modest, not over built, likes the idea of the safety and code improvements. Does not see any detriment.
Ardito – no requirements for elevating; already starting four feet in the hole. Putting a modern convenient livable safe up to code dwelling only being three above the twenty foot allowance. There are a lot more positive than negatives; will be in favor.
Davis – We have an ordinance and a difficult situation; the difference here is that we are measuring from the street because there isn’t a curb. Not too difficult of a stretch; this is a very modest home and serves as a model for the rest of the community.
Struncius – Echo the last sentiments. The approach of the design is very nice and the architectural features give it a look. Finds this to be the right approach without pushing the limits and borders boardwalk homes that are up there in height and starts to fit in with the overall look and is a positive improvement. Positives outweigh any of the detriment.
Motion by Mr. Reynolds, second by Mr. Kelly to approve application #2013-17 of Robert and Susan FEsta with conditions.
In favor: Wolfersberger, Spader, Kelly, Reynolds, Ardito, Davis and Struncius
Opposed: None
Application approved with conditions
Conditions
1. The applicant is to build the home as shown to the Board and as described at the time of the hearing.

2. The Master Deed is to be amended to show the change in the location of the house and the driveway layout. A copy of the amendment to the Master Deed must be provided to the Building Department prior to the issuance of the Certificate of Occupancy.


Application #2012-23 – Robert Rosen and Carol Alesso – 115 Philadelphia Avenue - Block 30; Lot 8 -Applicant wishes to raise existing single family dwelling to ABFE with garage under home.
Not being heard - To be rescheduled

Application #2013-11 – David Barra – 126 Ocean Avenue – Block 121 ; Lot 9.02 – Applicant wishes to raise the existing two family dwelling to the new base flood elevation. Applicant also wishes to alter the roof to create habitable attic space.
Carried from April 10, 2013 without notice
Ray Bogan, Esq. attorney for applicant
Robert C. Burdick, P.E., P.P., applicant’s Professional Engineer and Professional Planner, stated that the applicant submitted revised plans and that the applicant eliminated the living space in the attic area and also eliminated the one-car garage. (The applicant originally proposed to add a garage underneath the house; however the Board was concerned that in order to do so would reduce off-street parking.) The applicant proposes to raise the house to bring it into FEMA base flood elevation requirements. The expansion of the house is due to the additional steps needed for entrance into the house upon raising the house to meet the FEMA regulations. The proposed house will meet all fire code regulations.
David Barra, applicant stated that he proposes to raise the house to meet the FEMA base flood elevation standards and will keep the house exactly the way it is at the present time, except for aesthetic improvements. There will be no changes to the existing off-street parking since the garage addition has been eliminated and there is no need for a driveway curb cut. The façade will be sided with hardy backer board siding and will continue down to the front door and the roof will be a shingle roof. The existing deck is constructed from fiber glass and will remain.
Paul Ward, of 106 Ocean Avenue, sold the home to the applicant as a 2-family home. He is aware of the improvements the applicant has made over years and noted that all the improvements were code compliant.
The Board was pleased that the applicant will raise the structure in order to meet the FEMA base flood elevation standards. The Board determined that the modifications made to the plans to eliminate the proposed garage and to maintain the same number of off-street parking spaces is a benefit to the community and that the decision to eliminate the proposed habitable attic space originally proposed was more agreeable to the Board as the additional building height would have created too much massing. The Board determined that the renovations to the house will be aesthetically pleasing and will result in an improvement to the housing stock of the Borough of Point Pleasant Beach and that there are no substantial negative impacts arising from this proposal as the front porch will not impinge on the light, air, or privacy of the surrounding property owners and the benefits of this proposal outweigh its detriments.


Conditions


1. The area underneath the rear deck is never to be enclosed more than the existing condition.

2. The exterior of the building is to be sided with hardy backer board siding and the siding on the front façade will be brought down to the height of the door.

3. The home is to be constructed as depicted on the drawing marked as Exhibit A-4 as shown to the Board; except that the applicant agreed to bring the siding down to the height of the door thereby replacing the arborvitaes.

4. The approval is subject to the applicant submitting an amended application showing the corrected Proof of Ownership.

Deliberation
Davis – Commended him on his plans and understands on what he is trying to do and appreciates him taking the boards comments into consideration. But is disappointed that he didn’t take the space that was going to be a garage a make it storage and utility space. We are not improving anything we are just going forward. You didn’t ask for this to happen and we are sympathetic to that.
Spader – Also disappointed, thought after the last meeting that there would be a little more to this. What we are doing is scrambling an egg a different way. We are not getting any improvement to fire access. The rush to judgment is not improving the housing stock of Point Pleasant Beach and will not support this.
Reilly – I must say my concern was the garage and I am glad that you are taking it out. It is hard to argue that you shouldn’t be allowed to raise your house on the other hand I do agree with the other board members about approving a non conforming structure so I will listen to my colleagues and see what they have to say.
Kelly - Also very happy to see the parking situation change; it just wouldn’t work. I feel I am getting my pocket picked; we know what we have and basically we are not getting anything, we are ending up with what we had before. It will be safer but no improvement. I will not vote against it.
Reynolds – I do not think it would be fair of the board to eliminate an on street parking spot. It will be an aesthetic improvement to the area.. Given the proofs I do not see how we can deny raising the home.
Ardito – Sorry for your loss which put you in this position. You have come before us with plans and it looked like we were on the verge of getting something (a little more conformity) and the plans changed; we are still getting a new up to code building. There are still positives outweighing the negative factors and I will be in favor.
Chairman Struncius - I am very in line with what Jay and Steve said with what are the positives. The fact of disappointment is we wanted to get the best out of the application; you just want to raise your home as is but we are getting new siding, windows and aesthetics. Over all it is going to be a safer building. In favor

Motion by Mr. Reilly, second by Mr. Ardito to approve application #2013-11 of David Barra with conditions
In favor: Davis, Reilly, Kelly, Reynolds, Ardito and Struncius
Opposed: Spader
Meeting adjourned at 10:10pm
Attest: Karen L. Mills, Clerk of the Board


Published July11, 2013 | Board of Adjustment Minutes | 1641


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