Elmhurst Development, Planning, & Zoning Committee mulls indoor sports facility
Elmhurst Development, Planning, & Zoning Committee met Monday, Jan. 23.
The Elmhurst Development, Planning & Zoning Commission includes three aldermen who advise the city council on matters related to economic development, housing, building, planning and zoning.
Here are the minutes as provided by Elmhurst:
Development, Planning, & Zoning Committee (Monday, January 23, 2017)
Generated by Eileen Franz on Thursday, January 26, 2017
1. Call to Order
Chairman Levin called the meeting to order at 7:00 PM. Committee Members Present: Scott M. Levin, Chairman; Mark A. Mulliner, Vice Chair, Michael Honquest, Alderman 6th Ward Committee Members Absent: None Elected Officials Present: Mayor Morley, Alderman Deuter, Alderman Bram City Staff Present: Mike Kopp, Eileen Franz, Than Werner, Jim Grabowski (part of meeting), City Attorney Storino (part of meeting) Others Present: Dan McLeister, Gray Megan, Tom Paravola, Megan O’Neil Sutton, Laura Allen, Laura Dolak, Richard Inskeep, Sarah Massey, Kelly Wing, Sara LeMar, Mike Lewicki, Joyce Sloan, Kasindra Mladenoff, John Quigley, Rima Veidemanis, Allison Jenzen, Lance Adeszko, Brian Singleton
2. Public Comments
John Quigley, Elmhurst Chamber of Commerce: Stated that he does not agree with the concerns related to public safety and traffic. Needs clearer picture of safety issues, there has never been accident while he has been around and how is this use different from retail or restaurants for customer and employee use. Within a mile there are locations where kids are picked up and dropped off on regular basis. There are 2 schools and a theatre. If there are safety concerns he would like to know what is different from another tenant. Rima Veidemanis, 206 Fairfield: She would like to echo the comments of John Quigley. She has used alley and been the only car going through at high drop off times. Commented on diversity of uses and that she sees kids get dropped off throughout City Centre. This location doesn’t seem to be high traffic area. Added service is benefit to town. Better location. Laura Allen, Columbia Street: Spoke at the last meeting. In reference to Committee members stating they are not concerned with who is using service because it could change, she commented that they are a sample representation, even if they are gone in a few months. Laura Dolak: She was at the last meeting. In this location she would walk instead of drive. She lives on Michigan and her block is expanding rapidly, people could use Kidz Drop In. She does not feel safe pushing a stroller north on York and only drives when her husband is out of town. She would prefer to walk. Megan O’Neil Sutton: Stated she lives in Lombard and comes to Elmhurst for Kidz Drop In. She loves downtown Elmhurst. She has been coming down alley to see the traffic since the last meeting and doesn’t see an issue. No safety issue. She appreciates people looking out for kids. Allison Jenzen, Mitchell: Moved to Elmhurst 2 years ago, and would spend more money downtown if KidzDrop In was located here. She will takes her dollars out of Elmhurst if she is paying a sitter for a 4 hour minimum. They could ride bikes, use Uber. Orange Theory does not have child care so she could use Kidz Drop In while working out. She would stay downtown longer. Kelly Wing: After the last meeting she tried to view in Committee’s shoes and walked down the alley with her husband, dog and child. She commented on the “After 5” parking spaces and that afternoon traffic was a bigger concern. She questioned whether a cop should sit and watch for those using the alley as a through street. There were no cars on Saturday. She also walked by old hospital. There are new restaurants and gyms, why would a day care not be an exciting idea for downtown? Driving from the train station she noticed the YMCA drop off and pick up lined up. Lance Adeszko: Read through the case and was struck by the safety concerns. There are doctors, dentists and orthodontists in the area that are not a safety concern? There should be diversity in uses, we have a lot of nail salons, it would be nice to have something totally different. This is a unique offering. Sara Massey: Stated the City is making it hard for an existing business to stay in Elmhurst. Keeping the space empty and possibly moving a loved, profitable business outside community. It is too hard; she is jumping through hoops to keep business here. Mike Lewicki: Has lived in Elmhurst his whole life and now has a family. He stated that the traffic argument is ridiculous. Top drop off times are 4pm to 6pm. The prime time traffic hours are outside of city hall hours. He suggested another speed bump, 10 minute parking and using the front. Tom Paravola, City Centre: City Centre has an organizational interest. The Board has not reviewed, but the staff feels it is synergistic with other businesses. He recommended looking at the alley to see if speed bumps, removing parking spaces to widen the alley, adding warning lights and/or, pedestrian markings would help with the safety concerns. He suggested look at the library. The City Centre office recommends seeing what can be done structurally to alleviate safety concerns.
3. Business Before the Committee
A. Case 16 P 13 Mladenoff Day Care
Chairman Levin started the discussion by stating that he appreciates the input from everyone.He has spent a lot of time thinking and listening.He explained that we go through a process, not hoops, and that a Conditional Use Permit is permitted when the conditions have been met.He has spoken to applicant and trying to understand why orientation for access to the facility is only to the east.Prior applicant, the proposed Safari Daycare had looked to use York Street.In his opinion, pick up/drop off doesn’t work exclusively in front or back.There needs to be flexibility to use either entrance.When he comes to City Hall in the morning, no one is parked on York Street from 7 am to 9 am, meaning there is capacity for dropping off in front. There is the employee parking in back and City Hall parking on the east which might be better to use in evening.If there is a truck from heating company, people will have to come from another way.We have a lot of uses where there are a lot of children. We need to give parents credit for being safer when crossing with kids.Parents are more attentive with children to protect them and to show the correct crossing lesson to kids. Chairman Levin stated that he checked with the City Attorney regarding liability and confirmed that the City does not incur liability by passing a Conditional Use Permit.The use is not really a concern.Some say downtown should have businesses that generate sales tax.He agrees with Allison’s comment about people coming downtown; his is cutting edge, and he could not find in another community.For all those reasons he is in favor of the request, though he does not like to reverse Z&P’s decision.We can’t speculate how those absent would have voted.He is not downplaying safety, and we will have to see how it goes if it passes.Dividing pick-up and drop-off between east and west will alleviate concerns. Alderman Honquest stated his position has not changed since the last meeting. Alderman Mulliner stated he has reviewed all information, spoken to owner and is 100% behind the request. It is a good use for property, if 60 kids are there that is an opportunity for 120 parents to see downtown and possibly 120 grandparents to see downtown. It is an opportunity to provide a service and expose people to downtown. The drop off use is unique. Chairman Levin also commented on the traffic reports, which do not conclude that there is a problem. The item will be under reports at the next City Council meeting with a favorable report from Chairman Levin and Alderman Mulliner.
B. FFC Request for TIF Assistance
ACM Kopp stated that there are minor changes from the previous report.Specifically the name and the tax protesting information is now in document.The numbers stayed the same.Due diligence yielded some geotechnical issues with the soil.Our engineers reviewed and agreed with a $240,000 reduction.The other reduction was for streetscape.FFC is assuming risk that it won’t be over $35K.The streetscape will go all the way to building.The recapture is based on construction cost at 50/50 split.The utility cost is $333,000.Alderman Mulliner asked about the number and referenced the report before Public Works and Building Committee which stated a different amount.Before closing on the property, all permits have to be in hand and construction has to start within 60 days. Alderman Levin reviewed Public Works and Building Committee report. It was requested that ACM Kopp verify the numbers in the two reports match. Chairman Levin commented that even if this was a private sale, the price reduction due to soil would have happened during the due diligence period. Utility relocation is something the City would want to do. The request will move forward under Reports. Mayor Morley stated that he supports the request 100% and agrees with the due diligence. It is a fair price even with reduction. Mayor Morley and ACM Kopp discussed the building to the south regarding construction. ACM Kopp stated there will be a foot space between the 2 buildings and there will a downspout in that space. They will work with owner.
C. Opus Request for TIF Assistance (Continued Discussion)
ACM Kopp reported that there is no new information from the last meeting. It will be on the next agenda.
D. Indoor Sports Facility
ACM Kopp reported that the Park District recently sent out a survey and that included a question asking if there is support for a facility. The Park District wanted to know if the Committee remained committed to the facility. Chairman Levin explained the different perspectives of the Park District and the City, i.e., the Park District is primarily concerned about use of the facility by Elmhurst residents, while the City is also concerned about a facility that will attract visitors to Elmhurst as an economic development generator. In either event, the Committee is interested in continuing the discussions and planning. ACM Kopp, Business Development Coordinator Jason and Park District staff toured the Lockport and Woodridge facilities. The Woodridge facility is similar to a park district facility with a hard court and fitness center. The Lockport facility is for baseball. The Park District has asked if the City wants to do a joint venture. The City would like to wait for the survey results. Chairman Levin discussed what would be good for local residents vs. a regional facility. What would residents use and what would bring people in to town. The Committee agreed to discuss again when the survey results come in. Mayor Morley stated that the biggest piece of the puzzle is land. Before moving forward we need to know if we need to procure land. And we need to determine what will be in the facility before we know how much land is needed. If the City is a partner, it is likely the building will be bigger. Chairman Levin asked if there are any funding or grants for something like this. City Manager Grabowski said there could be grant dollars from the state (OSLAD). John Quigley stated that the college has begun discussions about a dome to accommodate athletic programs.
E. TIF IV Incentive Programs - Discussion
ACM Kopp explained that this is on the agenda due to the recent discussions on Brewpoint. Alderman Honquest and Alderman York requested that we tighten up financial incentives and that we review this now rather than later. Chairman Levin stated we should look at the TIF policy, generally, as well as for the new TIF districts, and asked staff to look at issues for next meeting. ACM Kopp reported that BDC Jason has begun reviewing other communities and putting together a spreadsheet. It is already 8 pages, and includes a variety of programs. Staff will finalize for the next meeting to start discussion. Mayor Morley requested that the conversation include information about TIF V incentives as well. We need to lay down policy. Chairman Levin asked about whether Kane McKenna has expertise in this area and if the EDC should review. Alderman Dueter requested that the North York Plan be reviewed to possibly include incentives to help with goals. Alderman Bram stated that this should be a broad stroke all the TIF’s. All TIF’s have unique challenges, and we should look at all. Alderman Levin stated we will look at the TIF policy and that the agenda item will be broad.
4. Other Business
Upcoming Agenda items were discussed.
Chairman Levin adjourned the meeting at 8:05 pm.
Organizations in this Story
209 N York St
Elmhurst, IL - 60126-2717