Turns out, the
property at 124-26 N. 16th St.--on which Bennett’s Rentals LLC wants to
build a single-story duplex--isn’t zoned B-3 at all.
It’s zoned R-3,
which means, as attorney Terry Hiestand told the Chesterton Board of Zoning
Appeals at its meeting last week, that the project requires only two
variances, not the five which his client originally was seeking.
Those variances: 20
percent more lot coverage than permitted by the Zoning Ordinance, or a total
of 50 percent; and a waiver of the requirement to construct a sidewalk in
front of all new construction.
unanimously to approve both variances, following a public hearing at which
no one spoke in favor of the petition and no one in opposition.
A two-story duplex
would have obviated the need for the lot-coverage variance, Hiestand noted.
“But my client’s trying to do something with a little pizzazz that would
appeal to seniors,” he said. As for the sidewalk, it’s an older area of town
and no sidewalks were ever installed in that neighborhood, Hiestand added.
Member Fred Owens
did express a mild concern about drainage, related to the extra lot
coverage. But Town Engineer Mark O’Dell said that all gutter downspouts can
be directed to flow into the grassy rear-yard and that builder Bill Bennett
could install swales as well along the property lines. “He’s worked with us
in the past.”
Kowalski, for his part, had no concerns at all. “It’s an infill lot and a
builder is willing to take a chance,” he said. “I don’t see any issues
Jeff and Wendy
Members also voted
unanimously to grant the petition of Jeff and Wendy Knarian for a variance
to pour an additional concrete parking pad next to their home at 502 Union
Court. That pad would increase total lot coverage to 44 percent, 14 percent
more than the maximum permitted by the Zoning Ordinance.
The Knarians’ home
is located in the rounded “knuckle” of Union Court, and there’s no good
place to park either their RV or visitors vehicles’ other than in front of
the mailbox. But the USPS won’t deliver when the mailbox is blocked.
“This is a
no-brainer,” Kowalski said. “I have nothing to say.”
At a public hearing
which preceded the vote, no one spoke in favor of the petition and no one in
Earlier this month,
the Town Council also voted unanimously, at the Knarians’ request, to waive
the Town Standard governing driveways. That standard requires driveways to
be a minimum of six feet from the property line, but the Knarians’ widened
driveway will be only 1’ 8’’ from that line. As a condition of the waiver,
the Knarians must install a French drain in their backyard to capture runoff
from the widened driveway.
117 N. 15th St.
Earlier in meeting,
members held two preliminary hearings, the first on the petition of Ed and
Amy Spanopoulos, who are seeking a variance to add a second principal
structure to the property at 117 N. 15th St.
Already on the
site: an 800-square foot block building which has been the home of multiple
businesses since it was erected in 1956, attorney Greg Babcock told the
board. The Spanopouloses, owners of Lake and Pond Biologists LLC--currently
located next to Hopkins Small Engines at 427 S. Calumet Road--want to
re-locate their business to North 15th Street, build a 2,900-square foot
facility immediately south of the block building, and use the old structure
for office space.
“We’ve expanded to
the point we need a lot more space,” Ed Spanopoulos said.
unanimously to hold a public hearing on the petition at their next meeting,
“I think it’s a
good building and will clean up the area,” Member Kim Goldak observed.
1720 Wood St.
preliminary hearing was on the petition of Brian Bartoszek, owner of
Trapmasters Plumbing LLC at 1720 Wood St., who’s seeking three variances to
enable the expansion of the business: one to increase lot coverage to 65
percent, from the maximum of 30 percent permitted by the Zoning Ordinance; a
second for a sideyard setback of three feet, five feet fewer than the
minimum of eight feet; and a third for a rear-yard setback of zero feet, 10
feet fewer than the minimum of 10 feet.
“We’ve got twice as
many employees as we did five years ago and we need more space,” Bartoszek
told the board.
unanimously to hold a public hearing on Bartoszek’s petition on Dec. 30.
approached the Town Council at its last meeting to request the vacation of a
platted but unimproved alley next to the property as part of his expansion
project. That petition is pending review by staff.
Legacy Sign Group
unanimously as well to continue a third scheduled preliminary hearing, on a
petition for signage variances submitted by Legacy Sign Group, to Dec. 30.
from the petitioner was unable to attend last week’s meeting. Legacy Sign
Group is seeking to increase the height and size of the Horizon Bank sign at
423 Roosevelt St.