May 18, 2017
City Council Chambers, 200 W. Walker Street
I. Call to
Order and Roll Call of Members
II. Approval of
A. February 16, 2017
B. April 20, 2017
privilege of speaking at this time is limited to the following persons:
residents, persons having an ownership interest in property or a business
within the City, or their attorneys.
statement of no more than 3 minutes may be made. There will be no yielding of
time to another person. State law prohibits members of the Historic Commission
from commenting on any statement or engaging in dialogue without an appropriate
agenda item being posted in accordance with the Texas Open Meetings Act.
Comments should be directed to the entire Historic Commission, not individual
members of the Historic Commission or staff. If addressing a specific agenda
item, speakers must keep their remarks specific to the item being considered by
the Historic Commission. Any speaker making personal attacks or using vulgar or
profane language shall forfeit his/her remaining time and shall be seated.
IV. New Business
A. The Historic Commission shall provide comments to the
Planning and Zoning Commission for a deviation from the "RNC" (Residential
Neighborhood Conservation) standards to allow for the construction of a fence
with no transparency on a residential property located along the south side of
4th Street, between Illinois Avenue and North Iowa Avenue at 911 4th
Hearing and Action Items
A. Hold a public hearing and take action on a Certificate
of Appropriateness (HC 17-02), a request to replace siding on an
existing single-family structure, located on the southwest corner of 4th
Street and Colorado Avenue with the address 621 4th Street.
B. Hold a public hearing and potentially make a
recommendation to the Planning & Zoning Commission on the draft version
of the proposed development regulations for new construction within the
Downtown Redevelopment area, located generally along Main Street (FM 518)
between SH 3 and Iowa Street.
VI. Commissioner's Comments
VII. Staff Comments
A. Update on outreach initiatives
THIS IS TO CERTIFY THAT THE ABOVE NOTICE OF MEETING WAS
POSTED ON THE BULLETIN BOARD AT CITY HALL OF THE CITY OF LEAGUE CITY, TEXAS, ON
OR BEFORE THE 15h DAY OF MAY, 2017, BY 6 PM, AND WAS POSTED IN ACCORDANCE
WITH CHAPTER 551, LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE (THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT).
ITEMS POSTED IN THE OPEN SESSION PORTIONS OF THIS AGENDA MAY ALSO BE DISCUSSED
IN CLOSED OR EXECUTIVE SESSION IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE TEXAS
OPEN MEETINGS ACT.
WHILE THIS IS NOT A MEETING OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF LEAGUE
CITY, A QUORUM OF THE CITY COUNCIL MAY BE PRESENT IN THE AUDIENCE.
MEMBERS OF OTHER CITY BOARDS MAY ALSO BE PRESENT.
Kris Carpenter, Planning Manager
CITY OF LEAGUE CITY
Thursday, May 18, 2017 at 6:00 P.M.
City Council Chambers
200 West Walker Street
I. Call to Order and Roll Call of Members of Historic Commission
Steph McDougal opened the meeting at 6:00 PM.
Members present: Members absent:
David Hake, Vice-Chairperson John Schoellkopf
Steph McDougal, Chairperson
Michael Hendershot, ex-officio
Daniel Henn – Arrived at 6:45 p.m.
Korrie Becht, Senior Planner
Kris Carpenter, Planning Manager
Frankie Legaux, Assistant Director of Planning and Development
Paul Menzies, Director of Planning and Development
Michelle Villarreal, Deputy City Attorney
II. Approval of Minutes
A. February 16, 2017
B. April 20, 2017
Ms. Hetico made a motion to approve the minutes of February 16, 2017 as written.
Ms. Pierce seconded the motion.
The motion passed unanimously by a vote of 5-0-0.
Mr. Hake made a motion to approve the minutes of April 20, 2017 as revised.
Ms. Pierce seconded the motion.
The motion passed unanimously by a vote of 5-0-0.
III. Citizen Communication
Leon Beard, 915 4th Street, expressed his concern in regard to the fence located at 911 4th Street due to its height and material composition. He asked that the fence adhere to the standards for the Historic District to meet height and transparency requirements for consistency within the neighborhood.
David Cifuentes, 911 4th Street, stated the fence was needed due to safety reasons and protection from neighboring dogs, which bark and posed a potential threat. He stated that the fence was also needed for privacy due to behavior by the residents of the neighboring property and their guests.
Steve Hetico, 408 N. Iowa Avenue, commented on the role of the Historic District and stated there were citizens of whom did not know the purpose of the Commission. He said the Commission needed to be brought out to the citizens to inform of the roles and responsibilities of the Historic Commission and Historic District as he believed there were misconceptions of its role. He continued that staff may not know what was going on as well, and it may be beneficial for the City to provide outreach to the Historic District.
IV. New Business
The Historic Commission shall provide comments to the Planning and Zoning Commission for a deviation from the “RNC” (Residential Neighborhood Conservation) standards to allow for the construction of a fence with no transparency on a residential property located along the south side of 4th Street, between Illinois Avenue and North Iowa Avenue at 911 4th Street.
Korrie Becht, Senior Planner with the City of League City, presented on the request and informed that fences did not require a Certificate of Appropriateness, however the applicant was requesting a deviation from the Residential Neighborhood Conservation (RNC) Zoning District fence regulations.
Ms. Pierce made a motion to approve the deviation to the Residential Neighborhood Conservation (RNC) Zoning District fence regulations as requested.
Mr. Hake seconded the motion.
Ms. McDougal asked staff about a past fence request, which was granted a Certificate of Appropriateness, and was referenced in the staff report. She requested staff to explain what was different about this request to require Planning and Zoning Commission approval.
Ms. Becht stated that past interpretations of the Zoning Ordinance required all requests within the Historic District to go before the Historic Commission for a Certificate of Appropriateness. She explained that the ordinance clearly stated that only requests for a structure or building required Historic Commission approval. As such, a fence was neither a building or a structure per the ordinance. She continued that fences still required administrative approval for compliance with RNC and HD Design and Material Guidelines.
Ms. McDougal stated the last fence request was in December 2016 and was located within the RNC district.
Mr. Carpenter informed that the ordinance read that only a building, not a structure, required a Certificate of Appropriateness. However, any deviation from the requirements would go before the Historic Commission for approval.
Ms. McDougal informed the audience that the Historic Commission would vote on a recommendation to the Planning Commission, not to approve the request outright.
Ms. McDougal stated that there had been an issue with the Building Department approving permits for applications within the Historic District and asked staff to speak to a promise made to ensure that citizens would receive correct information from the Building Department about fences within the Historic District.
Mr. Carpenter stated that a mistake was made in the past, and informed that Planning Department staff had provided the Building Department with a map of the Historic District and requested all applications within the district to be directed to the Planning Department. He informed that a new computer system would be utilized in coming weeks, which would automatically detect an address within the Historic District at the time of application acceptance.
Ms. McDougal recognized that staff reported there were things constructed in the Historic District prior to the time that the rules were instituted that did not meet the current requirements. She stated that they did not require citizens to come back to conform to the current requirements if their improvements were not subject to the same standards at the time of construction. She explained the Historic Commission oversaw administration of the ordinance as it was written today, regardless of what it may have been in the past. She asked staff for a reference of the Certificate of Appropriateness granted for case HC 15-11, which was the previous case mentioned in the staff report.
Ms. Becht stated that no rationale for the decision to approve the fence case HC 15-11 was included in the minutes from that meeting.
Ms. Hetico stated that in HC 15-11, the people built the fence were upset about animals next door.
Mr. Hake stated the previous deliberations did not necessarily set a precedent without going through the same discussion, and was moot to the discussion at hand.
Mr. Carpenter spoke to both points and informed that the purpose of referencing past requests was to provide a reference that the 6’ tall wood fence was not out of character with the area.
Ms. Pierce asked if 50% transparency could mean something as simple as removing every other picket.
Ms. Becht stated one option was to remove every other picket. However, if the purpose of the fence was to keep animals out, depending on the size of an animal they may get through a fence with every other picket removed. She stated that other options showed a 3 to 4-foot tall fence plus lattice, a wrought iron fence, or a fence entirely out of lattice. She continued that none of those were practical options for a fence, especially to keep animals in or out of an area.
Ms. McDougal stated the point of having a transparency standard was to maintain an open feeling for a neighborhood and asked for more investigation that could potentially reveal additional options to allow the homeowner to maintain a solid fence at the bottom to prevent intrusion, while maintaining a transparent top portion.
Ms. Becht stated staff was not responsible to make a plan for the applicant, rather they look at what was being proposed to ensure they meet the requirements in cases where it was already built.
Ms. McDougal stated the Commission was required to treat the request the same as with any other project, despite it being already constructed.
Ms. Hetico asked what part of the fence was partially transparent.
Ms. Becht answered there was no text specifying where the transparency was, rather the ordinance provided a graphic reference.
David Cifuentes, 911 4th Street, provided photographs to staff. He informed that the neighbor’s fence needed repair and pointed to the condition of the fence and the size of the dogs next door. He stated there was a fear that a dog would jump over the fence as it had happened in the past.
Ms. Pierce asked if the applicant installed the fence, or if a contractor would be doing the work.
Mr. Cifuentes, stated a family friend was helping his family install the fence. He informed that they went to the City three times to see if they needed permission to build the fence; however, each time they were informed they did not.
Ms. Hetico asked what the first date was that they asked for permission.
Mr. Cifuentes stated it would have been around April 2016.
Ms. McDougal said she understood where the applicant was coming from as far as goals for a security and privacy barrier; however, there were standards that needed to be upheld. She hoped to provide a reasonable solution to provide to the Planning and Zoning Commission.
Mr. Hake stated that, from his perspective, the fence appeared to be standard with the rest of the City; however, the block on which it was placed did not have any similar fences. He asked the Commission to consider the character and compatibility with nearby houses.
Ms. Hetico stated she understood the need for privacy and security with one’s children and hoped to find a solution.
Ms. McDougal asked if an option to achieve the standards would be to see if the applicant was inclined to modify the front of the fence to provide more transparency.
Mr. Carpenter stated the answer would be yes, the suggestion would bring the request closer to the requirements set forth in the ordinance and informed the ordinance required that all sides of the fence be 50% transparent.
Ms. McDougal said the three options to consider were to approve the deviation as requested, require 50% transparency for the entire fence, or approve with transparency requirements only for a portion of the fence, which would also be a deviation.
Ms. Hetico stated she had a hard time considering the options, because the applicant went to the City three times.
Mr. Hake stated he would feel better about a 50% transparency on the front portion only and stated that option may be a reasonable compromise.
Mr. Henn agreed and stated the front being 50% transparent would be a fair compromise.
Mr. Hendershot reminded that the Historic Commission was only providing a recommendation and not approving.
Ms. McDougal stated staff could work with the applicant to come to a reasonable solution.
Ms. Pierce amended the main motion to make a recommendation of approval to the Planning and Zoning Commission to require the front of the fence to meet 50% transparency and allow the remainder of the fence to be solid.
Mr. Hake seconded the motion.
The motion passed by a vote of 5-1-0.
Ms. Hetico voted in opposition.
V. Public Hearing and Action Items
Hold a public hearing and take action on a Certificate of Appropriateness (HC 17-02), a request to replace siding on an existing single-family structure, located on the southwest corner of 4th Street and Colorado Avenue with the address 621 4th Street.
Korrie Becht, Senior Planner for the City of League City, presented the request and informed that the home was not a historic home due to the build date of 1992. She informed the Commission that under the Preservation Plan, Subsection (c), the Preservation Plan may be interpreted liberally in connection with buildings which lack historical value.
Mr. Henn asked what the size of the overlap of the reveal was for the siding.
Ms. Becht stated the applicant was in attendance and could answer that question.
Mr. Hake stated the house was built in the style of the neighborhood and asked staff for their thoughts on a home that was not contributing to the district.
Ms. McDougal stated a property in the Historic District was classified by its contributing status, based on architecture and design, and whether it was constructed in the period of significance of the neighborhood. Therefore, as the house was built outside of the period of significance, it would not count as contributing.
Ms. Becht stated that staff did take that point into consideration due to the fact a survey did not exist.
Ms. Hetico asked why the material was not on the approved list.
Ms. Becht stated it had the same characteristics as fiber cement board, but was a newer product than the regulations accounted for.
Ms. Pierce asked if the material had to be painted.
Ms. Becht stated it did, however the Commission would not regulate paint colors nor the type of paint used.
Mr. Henn asked if the trim would be the same composition as the siding.
Ms. Becht stated she assumed yes, but the applicant could confirm.
Devin Miller, 621 4th Street, stated anything that was vinyl would be replaced with LP SmartSide, including around the windows. She stated that the siding would be a 1 inch lap siding, but did not know what the reveal was; however, it would be similar to the home across the street that was recently approved for fiber cement board.
Ms. McDougal opened the public hearing at 7:12 p.m.
With no comments received, the public hearing was closed at 7:13 p.m.
Mr. Henn made a motion to approve a Certificate of Appropriateness (HC 17-02), a request to replace siding on an existing single-family structure, located on the southwest corner of 4th Street and Colorado Avenue with the address 621 4th Street.
Ms. Hetico seconded the motion.
Ms. McDougal stated it was important that the reveal was not gigantic as the home was built to reflect the Victorian era, and requested a narrower reveal. She stated as the home was newer, it may reflect that of its own time.
The motion passed unanimously by a vote of 6-0-0.
Hold a public hearing and potentially make a recommendation to the Planning & Zoning Commission on the draft version of the proposed development regulations for new construction within the Downtown Redevelopment area, located generally along Main Street (FM 518) between SH 3 and Iowa Street.
Paul Menzies, Director of Planning and Development for the City of League City, stated that Mr. Carpenter would provide an update on outreach efforts from the staff level to promote the Historic District and what the Commission did for the community.
Mr. Menzies stated that a press release was provided informing of the public of the form based code and the Historic Commission meeting tonight, which was accessible on the City website and included links to items related to the presentation. He informed the Commission that a tentative meeting to discuss this item was scheduled on Monday, June 26, 2017 for a City Council and Planning and Zoning Commission workshop. Mr. Menzies continued that a recommendation was not required tonight.
Mr. Menzies provided a brief project update on the street restoration within the Historic District that is to use CDBG funding.
Ms. McDougal stated that, as street project was a CDBG federally funded project, it would trigger Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and requested assurance that the City would comply with the act.
Mr. Menzies stated the City would do that.
Brad Lonberger of Gateway Planning Group provided a presentation on the draft version of the proposed development regulations for new construction within the Downtown Redevelopment area.
Sections 125-76.A. Purpose and Intent, Sec. 125-76.B. Components of the Code, and Sec. 125-76.C. Administration.
Mr. Hendershot stated it would be incumbent upon the City to ensure the historic survey was referenced within Section 125-76(C).
Mr. Carpenter stated the survey would be available in the office and online, and informed an RFP was released, therefore it would get done.
Ms. McDougal stated that every structure within the district had an effect on the district and the number of contributing structures was limited. She continued that the Historic Commission typically would review all projects within the district, not just contributing structures, and asked that the Historic Commission would be included in review for both noncontributing and contributing requests.
Mr. Hake asked under Approval Authority, who the City Planner would be.
Ms. McDougal informed the Commission that Ms. Legaux would fill that role.
Ms. Becht stated that was how the department was referenced in other areas of the ordinance and staff knows “City Planner” referred to the Assistant Director of Planning and Development.
Ms. Hetico asked why the boundary stopped at Iowa and did not go to Wisconsin.
Mr. Lonberger answered they felt the initial border should be stopped at Iowa to include the commercial corridor in order to test and ensure it functioned properly. He stated staff could extend it if needed.
Schedule 125-76.C. Applicability Matrix
Mr. Hake expressed concern about, 10 parking spaces on some properties seemed high. He had the same concerns on the street façade change as it would not be left up to interpretation of the City Planner.
Mr. Lonberger stated the intent was to have someone that added up to 10 spaces, they would be required to consult with the City Planner for a review.
Sec. 125-76.D. Land Use Regulations and Sec. 125-76.E. Development Regulations
Mr. Hake stated that L7 as it referenced Animal Sales could be made more clear.
Mr. Menzies asked the Commission to take into consideration the regulations were written to be incorporated into the existing zoning ordinance, therefore the land use categories were written to refence existing categories.
Sec. 125-76.F. Building Design Standards
Ms. McDougal stated there were some areas within the “Building Design Standards” where the wording was not clear and offered to send her notes specifically to staff. She commented on page 11 item G, it would be helpful to define at what point repair or replacement might be needed as it was subjective as written. She also stated that the photographs related to corner treatments with quoins were misleading as to the intent. She stated in relation to “Changes in Structures”, there were no two story commercial buildings within the district, therefore it may be confusing to people as far as graphics showing where additions may be located, and asked it be specific to what was on the ground in League City.
Ms. Hetico asked on page 14, if 5-story buildings were permitted as it would not conform to the area of current.
Ms. McDougal stated it limited 5-story buildings to the west of Park Avenue where there was not a residential concentration, which may allow for a larger building.
Mr. Hake referred to page 7 as it related to building encroachments. He asked for a definition of “Butler Oaks” as there were other significant trees in the area that the encroachment restriction may be applied.
Mr. Lonberger stated they could add language to include other significant trees to the page.
Mr. Hendershot referred to Section 76-F.b.2, and stated a definition as to a “vista” would be required.
Mr. Lonberger stated that a definition would be carried over from the implementation plan when gateways and specific corners were identified.
Sec. 125-76.G. Streetscape and Landscape Standards – No comments about this section.
Sec. 125-76.H. Review of Plans – No comments about this section.
Mr. Hake stated he noticed the residential standards had been removed and asked why.
Mr. Lonberger stated there was no longer a single-family use, however a live-work or non-residential uses would have the same standards applied.
Ms. McDougal stated it would be difficult for any single-family home to expand their home and conform to the guidelines. She asked for additional language to be added to make residential expansion requirements clear to homeowners.
Mr. Lonberger said it may make sense to do a residential diagram, and additional language would be included.
Article V - Definitions
Ms. McDougal stated regarding “Article 3, Live-Work Standards”, the goal that the ground floor was to be used as a work-space with any smaller living quarters at the back, therefore the 51% requirement could apply to just the ground level with the 25% to apply for the building as a whole to meet the intent.
Ms. McDougal opened the public hearing at 7:59 p.m.
With no comments received, the public hearing was closed at 7:59 p.m.
Ms. Hetico made a motion to make a recommendation of approval to the Planning and Zoning Commission of the draft version of the proposed development regulations for new construction within the Downtown Redevelopment area, located generally along Main Street (FM 518) between SH 3 and Iowa Street.
Ms. Pierce seconded the motion.
The motion passed with a vote of 5-1-0.
Mr. Hake voted in opposition.
VI. Commissioner Comments
Mr. Hake apologized for a distraction caused by his work.
Ms. McDougal thanked Gateway Planning for their work on the draft regulations, and staff for their staff report and attention to detail.
VII. Staff Comments
Mr. Menzies stated at the June 15th meeting, staff would provide an update on the engineering of the public improvements within the Downtown Revitalization Plan.
Mr. Carpenter stated the form based code would be followed up by a survey of the Historic District. He informed a proposal would be accepted by June 21st with completion in September or October. Upon adoption of the survey and boundary of the Historic District, staff would send out information to owners within the District to explain the role of the Commission and district compliance. He informed that staff was proposing funds within the budget to redesign the Design and Material Guidelines and to re-do the ordinance as staff was aware changes were needed. He stated a temporary update to the website was conducted to include applications and relevant ordinances and further improvements were underway. He informed that Mr. Calkins had resigned from the Commission and he remained in everyone’s thoughts and prayers.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:06 p.m.
THIS IS TO CERTIFY THAT THE ABOVE NOTICE OF MEETING WAS POSTED ON THE BULLETIN BOARD AT CITY HALL OF THE CITY OF LEAGUE CITY, TEXAS, IN ACCORDANCE WITH CHAPTER 551, LOCAL GOVERNMENT CODE (THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT). ITEMS POSTED IN THE OPEN SESSION PORTIONS OF THIS AGENDA MAY ALSO BE DISCUSSED IN CLOSED OR EXECUTIVE SESSION IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT.
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT THE PRESENCE OF A QUORUM OF THE MEMBERS OF CITY COUNCIL AT ANY TIME DURING THE COURSE OF THE ABOVE-REFERENCED PROCEEDING MAY CONSTITUTE A MEETING OF CITY COUNCIL PURSUANT TO THE TEXAS OPEN MEETINGS ACT, CHAPTER 551 OF THE TEXAS GOVERNMENT CODE. BY THIS NOTICE, THE PUBLIC IS HEREBY ADVISED OF SAID MEETING NOT LESS THAN 72 HOURS IN ADVANCE OF THE DATE, TIME AND LOCATION NOTED ABOVE.
Mrs. Frankie Legaux Ms. Steph McDougal
Assistant Director of Planning and Development Chair, Historic District Commission