June 1, 2016 Plan Commission Minutes
|Michael Forbes, President||Stephen Kil, Town Manager|
|Gregory Volk, Vice-President||Kenn Kraus, Town Engineer|
|Steve Kozel, Secretary||Michael Muenich, Commission Attorney|
CALL TO ORDER:
Mr. Michael Forbes called to order the St. John Plan Commission Regular Meeting on June 1 2016 at 7:00 p.m., and asked all to rise for the Pledge of Allegiance (recited and all took their seats).
Roll call was taken by the recording secretary (Susan E. Wright). Commissioners present: Michael Forbes, Gregory Volk, Jon Gill, and Jason Williams. Staff present: Kenn Kraus, Stephen Kil and Michael Muenich. Absent: Steve Kozel, James Maciejewski and Bob Birlson.
Attorney Muenich advised Mr. Forbes for a point of order, noting that because you have only four members in attendance tonight, the statute requires not just a simple majority, but a majority of the board. Any proceedings by the board tonight must be approved by a 4 – 0 vote, otherwise it would have to be deferred or rescheduled.
Mr. Forbes advised the next item on the agenda is the approval of the March 2, 2016 and April 6, 2016 Plan Commission meeting minutes, and asked for any questions or amendments. Mr. Williams stated he had an amendment to the March 2, 2016 on page 4, first and second paragraph, where it says Mr. Williams, it should read Mr. Maciejewski. Mr. Forbes entertained a motion to approve the minutes with the correction. Mr. Williams made a motion to approve minutes. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion carried 4 ayes – 0 nays.
A. PROVIDENCE BANK DEVELOPMENT – Primary Plat Approval / Public Hearing (Mr. Phillip Mulder).
Mr. Michael Muenich advised that the proofs of publication are in order for the public hearing.
Mr. Phillip Mulder of Lagestee-Mulder advised that working off of some comments from the study session two weeks ago they made some changes to the site plan. Mr. Mulder advised they added sidewalk running along 101st and Calumet Avenue. They have also included the turn lane on 101st Avenue with these plans and it is finalized in the engineering plans.
They have also extended the curb on the entrance to 101st to prevent cars from trying to turn right off 101st and use the bank lot. They have also added on the plat of subdivision the ingress-egress easement that will extend to the property to the South. Mr. Kraus noted that the change is on sheet 4 of the paper copies handed out. Mr. Forbes advised that on final plat it will have to denoted what it is. Mr. Kraus advised that on the final plat it does show it.
Mr. Mulder stated that he believes that were all of the changes proposed by the commission. Mr. Forbes asked Mr. Williams if his concerns were addressed. Mr. Williams stated that it addresses the immediate issues that they discussed, but also stated that this plan does not make a lot of sense to him. Mr. Williams stated his concern was the traffic pattern on the site. Mr. Forbes offered that this is like the pattern at the Walgreens at 93rd, where those using the drive-through often make a “U-turn” with the connected strip mall to the North in order to access southbound U.S. 41, and he has not heard of any incident at that location.
Mr. Williams also asked about the trash enclosure location in relation to the property immediately to the South. Mr. Forbes advised that they do not have immediate plans before them. Mr. Mulder advised that they may relocate that trash enclosure as they are not set on that.
Mr. Muenich commented on the access to the property to the South, either showing on the primary and final plat now, or have it addressed later if and when the property to the South is before the commission. Mr. Forbes noted that the access is addressed on the final plat. Mr. Kraus noted that if you look at detail Lot 1 on the left side of the plat, it shows all those easements, including an ingress-egress easement.
Mr. Forbes then read Mr. Kraus’s letter concerning the development. We have reviewed the primary plat and site plan for the referred project and have the following comments. Subdivision project includes one R-1 residential lot, which is 20.9 acres and one C-2 commercial lot which is 1.38 acres. The R-1 lot will not be improved or developed as part of this project. We have completed our review of the primary plat of Providence Bank Subdivision, proposed improvements for Providence Bank, 10100 Calumet Avenue, lighting, photometric(s) and catalog cut sheets for Providence Bank; and landscaping plan, and find the plans to be satisfactory with the following comments. The primary plat and the proposed improvement plans are certified by a registered land surveyor or professional engineer. The lighting photometric(s) and landscaping plan are not certified and are considered insorily documents for the project. There are no curbs planned for either Calumet Avenue or 101st, it was discussed. The detention basin is designed for Lot 1 only. The detention for the residential lot is not included in these plans. Developmental Fee has not been established at this time, and it will be based on 2% of the construction costs of public improvements as supplied by the developer or a certified estimate by the developer’s engineer. Public improvements for this project should include the extension of the water main, sanitary sewer main, the additional of the right turn lane and taper, and the replacement and the addition of headwalls and culvert pipes under Calumet Avenue. Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan is included in the project plans, but have not been reviewed at this time. The fee for this review will be determined at the time of the review.
Mr. Forbes asked the board members if they had any questions concerning the engineer’s letter. Hearing none, Mr. Forbes noted that this is a public hearing and opened the floor to public comment, advising to please step up to the podium and state your name and address for the record.
Sharon Pacific (11423 State Line Road, Dyer, Indiana): My question is, I don’t like the way the sign has to be posted for these development issues. Because most people who are driving in a rural area at 40 miles an hour cannot see a sign that faces out. To me the developer should be required to have a sign facing both sides of the road, so that when they.,. people are driving along there so they actually know about these meetings. It’s not like unless you know somebody, you have no idea about these meetings at all. And I would like to propose that you make a change, and actually put this into procedure, so that the developer has to post the sign going both ways, that it’s not just somebody.,. I mean it’s different in the Town of St. John, because the speed limit is basically 20-25 miles an hour, you’re driving along, you see a sign that’s facing out, but if you’re driving 40 miles an hour, you don’t see that sign when it’s facing out. And I brought that up to Steve Kil about the Greystone. I was.,. could not believe when I went down Calumet Avenue and saw the sign, and he said that was a regulation sign by the Town of St. John. And that may be acceptable in this town, but you guys are smart enough to know that’s not a good enough sign going 40 miles an hour going down a rural highway. So I would like to propose that you have a sign that goes both ways on the road, so people who drive that road, can actually know what’s happening in this area. Thank you.
With no further public comment, Mr. Forbes closed the floor and brought the matter back to the board.
Mr. Forbes asked for any final questions or comments, hearing none he entertained a motion regarding Primary Plat for Providence Bank, please incorporate the Findings of Fact by reference. Mr. Volk made a motion to approve the Primary Plat for Providence Bank Development and reference the Findings of Fact. Motion seconded by Mr. Williams. Motion carried 4 ayes – 0 nays.
Mr. Forbes then entertained a motion regarding Site Plan. Mr. Volk made a motion to approve the Site Plans for the Providence Bank Development. Motion seconded by Mr. Gill. Motion carried 4 ayes – 0 nays.
B. HEARTLAND PARK – Primary Approval / Public Hearing (Mr. Doug Rettig)
Mr. Forbes advised the next agenda item is Heartland Park, for Primary approval and this is also a public hearing. Mr. Michael Muenich advised that the proofs of publication are in order for the public hearing. Mr. Forbes advised, just for the record, the development agreement between the Town of St. John and the Ice Arena Group has been completed and signed. Mr. Kraus advised this is also ready for Site Plan approval.
Mr. Doug Rettig of Land Technologies introduced himself, representing St. John Ice Arena regarding the proposed expansion of the existing facility. Mr. Rettig advised they have been working on this for a couple of months with different meetings. The intent is to put an addition on the existing ice arena building. Build an additional parking lot to the East of that, re-locate the volleyball courts, and then re-subdivide the existing two-lot subdivision into another two-lot subdivision.
Mr. Rettig showed the Site Plan to the members, directing their attention to a portion that will be the addition to the existing building, showing the existing and new parking lot to the East. Mr. Rettig showed the existing and the relocation of the volleyball courts. Mr. Rettig advised that they will be repaving an area by the Animal Control Facility, re-striping and connecting it to the other parking lot, so additional overflow parking of about thirty (30) new spaces have been added. These will serve the volleyball courts, as well as the proposed addition.
Mr. Rettig advised that the sanitary sewer is in place along the South property line. The water mains are also along the South property line. There is a storm sewer that runs along the building to the detention pond, and because of the new addition that is getting relocated around the building, which is very minor. New storm sewer in the new parking lot, which will also go to the existing detention pond. Mr. Rettig advised that he has provided Mr. Kraus with the calculations regarding the existing basin, which was oversized when it was built.
Mr. Rettig advised that they will be re-doing most of the lighting. Some of the poles have to be relocated and several new light poles will be installed. The architect is working on the landscape plan, which Mr. Kraus and I have discussed.
Mr. Williams asked about the proposed parking lot expansion, a couple questions here. One, that asphalt drive that empties out onto White Oak Avenue currently, what is the plan for that. Mr. Forbes stated that it already exists. Mr. Williams stated but that is a one car in and one car out. Mr. Rettig advised that would be kept as-is, but there will be a new connection (showed on meeting room screen) that would connect the two parking lots. Mr. Rettig advised that would be more secondary use for Animal Control Facility, they do have an overhead door here, so we are leaving them access to utilize that part of the building.
Mr. Williams advised that he was at the Animal Control Facility and there were about 3 or 4 dogs out in the dog run that was there, is it being relocated. Mr. Rettig advised that it was and showed the location. Mr. Kil advised they are looking at the West side of the building, the current ones are falling apart, so they needed to be replaced anyway.
Mr. Gill asked if there was a plan for where the asphalt path intersects the proposed driveway, like signage or striping to keep somebody from heading North on that path. Mr. Rettig advised that signage would be in order, it is not that different from the main drive.
Mr. Rettig asked Mr. Kil to place the last drawing of the plat set onto the meeting room screen. Mr. Rettig advised that this is the Primary Subdivision Plat, which will ultimately be the Final Plat, and I believe you will be seeing us back in a month asking for Final Plat approval.
Mr. Rettig advised he just wanted to clarify, right now Heartland Park is one very large lot, and one small lot. So he showed the original Lot 1 and the original Lot 2. Mr. Rettig showed that the re-subdivision is changing it to Lot 1A and Lot 2A, shows this Lot 2 is going away. That is what the re-subdivision plan is accomplishing, and this parcel, right now the ice arena sits on a parcel which is pretty much a square parcel here, but it is part of Lot 1. Mr. Rettig advised that they are creating an egress-ingress easement all the way through the property, from White Oak all the way to the ballfields, for the whole site, and then Lot 1A will be the public portion of the site. And then Lot 2A will basically be just the ice arena and little of the property outside of it.
Mr. Rettig advised that it is owned by two (2) entities, both entities; the Town and the Ice Arena Group will have to sign those mylars. That is the language on the plats, Mr. Kil and I will work out those details before the mylars are signed.
Mr. Volk asked if part of the Animal Control building was used by Public Works. Mr. Kil advised only cold storage, like Christmas decorations, there are no vehicles stored there.
Mr. Forbes noted that Mr. Rettig mentioned landscaping. Mr. Rettig advised that the architect is working on that and we will be providing it well before Final Plat approval, Mr. Kraus and I discussed it. We will be drawing a landscape plan and the photometric(s) for the lighting as well.
Mr. Williams asked if Mr. Maciejewski’s comments about walking around the building at street level were addressed. Mr. Rettig advised that the sidewalk on the North side of the building has been widened to accommodate landings on the North side, then those landings are due to the elevation difference between the finish floor of the building and the parking area that is already there. So now the sidewalks are quite a bit wider.
Mr. Forbes asked for any other thoughts or questions.
Mr. Forbes read the Town Engineer’s (Mr. Kraus) letter onto record: As stated the project includes two public zoned lots for Heartland Park, the original Lot 2 and the access easement for the original lot 2 will be vacated and are included in the new Lot 1A and new Lot 2A will incorporate the ice arena building and an area of the proposed additions to the building, new ingress-egress easements for the ice arena building and ballfields are also included on the plat. We have completed out review and find the plans to be satisfactory, with the exception that the parking lot photometric(s) and landscaping plan have not been submitted as part of the Site Plan documents. The Developmental Fee has not been established at this time, it will be based on 2% of the construction costs of the public improvements as supplied by the developer or a certified estimate by the developer’s engineer. Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan has not been review at this time. The fee for this will be determined at the time of review.
Mr. Forbes advised that this is a public hearing, I will open the floor to the public. Anyone wishing to comment please come to the podium and state your name and address for the record.
Sharon Pacific (11423 State Line Road, Dyer, Indiana): The thing I want to bring up is I think this is a really nice facility. But one of the things over the years since it was built and they put all that lighting in, there is so much lighting, that is just kinda ridiculous out by us, because it’s very dark and it’s really nice and you can see the night sky. We can’t even see the night sky anymore, because of all those lights. Couldn’t the developer, whoever the gentleman is, do something like they did at Beverly Shore, where they actually had the lights that direct down, rather than up into the sky, and therefore it cuts down into the overall effect of what the lights are. That their actually down helping the people rather than everywhere.
Mr. Forbes advised that they actually have a new ordinance in place and our new ordinance requires those type of lights. Mr. Kraus noted that it won’t change the ballfield lighting. Mr. Forbes agreed and stated that it will not address the ball field lights, but this will address the parking lot lights for the Ice Arena.
Mr. Forbes asked for any other public comment, hearing none he brought the matter back to the board. Mr. Forbes asked for any final comments or questions.
Mr. Forbes then entertained a motion for Primary Plat for Heartland Park Development, and please incorporate the Findings of Fact into the motion. Mr. Volk made a motion to approve the Primary Plat and incorporate the Findings of Fact into the motion. Mr. Gill seconded motion. Motion carried 4 ayes – 0 nays.
Mr. Forbes advised that now he will entertain a motion in regards to Site Plan, and that would be contingent upon receiving the landscaping plan and review of the photometric(s). Mr. Volk made a motion to give Site Plan approval to Heartland Park project, contingent upon receiving landscaping and photometric(s) plans. Mr. Williams seconded the motion. Motion carried 4 ayes – 0 nays.
OLD / NEW BUSINESS:
A. RENAISSANCE – UNIT 8 – Request Permission to Advertise Public Hearing (Mr. Doug Terpstra)
Mr. Forbes advised the next item on the agenda is Renaissance – Unit 8, they are requesting Permission to Advertise for Public Hearing for Primary Subdivision Approval.
Mr. Doug Terpstra came to the podium and advised that unit 8 is three (3) lots and includes improvements to Clarmonte Avenue.
Mr. Forbes stated that he believed the board has been over it a couple times, and it was just a matter of getting the property transferred over, and I believe that is all handled.
Mr. Muenich asked if he could give some background information. Unit 7 received Primary Approval approximately two (2) years ago. Mr. Terpstra then approached and in December we reviewed a revised Unit 7, which included these three lots in the proposal, but made some changes and locked them into the North tier. That was deferred and not moved further. In the interim, we determined that the detention basin apparently, as a result of a tax sale, had gone to the County, and the Town arranged to get the parcel back. We had advertised for bids, and the Town has entered into an agreement with Mr. Terpstra to completely restructure the whole corner, made Clarmonte tie over onto I believe Parrish. Part of the agreement and part of the original project contemplated that move. I have seen, and I believe you have seen it originally incorporated as part of the revised Unit 7, that subdivision which now stands alone, just those three (3) lots. It does not impact what was here before. So, Mr. Terpstra is going to have to withdraw the application of this deferred, and heard back in December. He has now filed an application for Unit 8, which just involves these three (3) lots, which you have all seen before and is consistent with the exchange agreement with Mr. Terpstra. So at this point, given the fact, it still has to have its own separate public hearing, even though it has already been submitted to a public hearing before as part of the revision Unit 7. So my recommendation to the commission is at this point, to make everything clear, you hold a public hearing on Unit 8, which just includes these three (3) lots, assuming Mr. Kraus’s engineering review is accurate, that it be given Primary Approval and you waive your rules for the 30-days, so that he can proceed with Final to get those streets in. This isn’t a new project; it has been kicking around for some time. This is consistent with what the Town Council has wanted to do for some period of time. It is consistent with the annexation agreement with The Gates, so we just have these mechanical problems that we had to solve. All of which to my knowledge have now been solved, so my recommendation is proceed with the public hearing on Unit 8; waive the rule and grant Final Approval for Unit 8, either assuming he posts a Letter of Credit until the improvements are done, you wouldn’t do it otherwise. But if those conditions are met, grant Final approval and move on.
Mr. Kil asked Mr. Muenich to clarify: you want Mr. Terpstra to withdraw the petition for Unit 7. Mr. Muenich stated yes, as it was heard in December. Mr. Kil: and ask for permission to advertise for a Public Hearing for Unit 8. Mr. Muenich: correct. Mr. Kil asked if that was fine with Mr. Terpstra. Mr. Terpstra: “Sure” (laugther). Mr. Kil stated, for the record note that he said sure.
Mr. Forbes stated then, the only action the board needs to take is to authorize public hearing. Mr. Muenich and Mr. Kraus noted that notices were done in the Unit 7 / Unit 8. Mr. Muenich was just wondering if Mr. Kraus has had the chance to make an engineering review on Unit 8. Mr. Kraus advised that he hasn’t because it was never on the docket. Mr. Muenich stated that has to be completed and Mr. Terpstra should attend the Plan Commission Study Session, next coming, resolve those issues, and assuming you have an engineering review and the other documents that are required by your ordinance, hold the public hearing and grant Primary and Final approval at your next meeting in July.
Mr. Forbes asked if everyone got that? Mr. Muenich continued that he has to withdraw, because you do have a Primary Plan pending that was heard on December 5, 2015 and was deferred, so that has to be withdrawn, otherwise you have two primary(s) covering the same parcel and pending at the same time. Mr. Forbes contended then it is just a matter of Mr. Terpstra saying that it’s withdrawn.
Mr. Kil repeated “He just said sure!”. Mr. Terpstra finally got to speak, and stated that he would like to formally withdraw what was proposed before, which Unit 8 was included in Unit 7. Now Unit 7 is stand alone, it was already approved, nothing changed on it. Unit 8 is a new one so it needed Primary with this piece of property. Mr. Muenich stated that is an accurate recital.
Mr. Forbes stated that given the foregoing I will entertain a motion to authorize a Public Hearing for Renaissance – Unit 8. Motion made by Mr. Williams. Motion seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion carried 4 ayes – 0 nays.
Vince Casboni (9679 White Oak Avenue): I am here again in regards to traffic. Casboni(s) did three traffic studies, one which was November 24, 2015 White Oak from 93rd and 101st north and south. We had 925 vehicles in 3 hours and 21 minutes. The second one was done December 9, 2015 White Oak north and south from 101st to 93rd. 3 hours exactly from 3:05 p.m. to 6:05 p.m., also we did the survey on 93rd from Hilltop Drive to Monix Drive. The total of those two intersections, which met at 93rd and White Oak, was a total of 2,619 vehicles in 3 hours’ time. The latest one was done just last Monday, May 16, 2016 from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. This was White Oak from 101st to 93rd, north and south. We had 3,268 vehicles. White Oak is going to become a boulevard. It is a two-lane road. 101st is just a 22’ wide road from White Oak to Calumet Avenue. You’re approving all these subdivisions, infrastructures, but the roads are still the same. Something has to be done. Thank you.
Mr. Williams asked Mr. Casboni if he could ask a follow-up question? Your May 16th report did you say 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.? Mr. Casboni said correct, sixteen hours.
Sharon Pacific (11423 State Line Road, Dyer, Indiana): We were here before about Greystone,.,um, it was brought up then, I brought up about imposing impact fees on the developers who are going to be making money from all these subdivisions. That they should be the ones who fix our roads. What has happened about that.
Mr. Forbes stated that we are in the process of hiring a group to get this impact fee in place. It’s a daunting task, nobody in Lake County has done it, so we are the first that are researching this. But the process is moving on.
Sharon Pacific (continued): And who is in charge of this group ,., that you’re hiring.,. is it a company or what?
Mr. Forbes advised yes, it is The Arsh Group. They are the group that does our Park Impact Fee, every five years. They are an independent consulting group; they have experience with Impact Fees. It is going to take some time, because as part of the process, the entire Town has to be evaluated, by an engineering group. So, when this is all said and done, we will know every single road in Town. Everything – Everything has to be studied, it needs to be done globally.
Mr. Forbes asked Mr. Kil about the estimated time frame. Mr. Kil stated that if he has to guess; if we got moving this Summer, which I think that we could do, The Arsh Group has solicited proposals from three separate engineering firms at this point. That will be presented to the Town Council very shortly. Costs are significant, but the benefits could be significant. If I had to guess from the time we started it to the time we finished it, would at least be twelve months. Because, remember you can finish the Impact Fee Analysis; but then you have to wait six months to implement it. So no matter when that work is done, you have a six month waiting period. The Impact Fee statute requires the six-month lag time before something is implemented.
Sharon Pacific (continued): And you can’t go back on the developers who have already put the developments in, and make them.,.
Mr. Kil and Mr. Forbes simultaneously said “No”. It will be placed on the building permit. Once established, any permit pulled from that point forward can be subject to it. Mr. Forbes reminded Mrs. Pacific that Greystone and The Preserves are 10-year developments. So if the impact fee takes a year to take effect, that still means nine years of building that the fee would be placed on.
Gerald Swets (9490 Joliet Street): I know this is public comment, but I guess there are a couple of questions and I had. One of them would be following “Robert’s Rules of Order”, Mr. Chairman, I’m wondering that when a motion comes from this body; or the Town Council, and then there is a second, why you don’t have a time for discussion or questions at that time before a vote. Because I think that is typically the way things are done. Also, and sorry I’m not asking for a response,., I’m just making a statement. Also, on your order of agenda at the Town Council meeting you had public comments before any decisions were made, which allows us time to remonstrate against any issues. And I thought we kinda asked for that, so I thought maybe it was gonna happen, but now I see it’s back here on the back end again. So I am wondering if you would consider bringing public comments back towards the beginning before any decisions or motions are made, so that we can remonstrate against that. And then the third point I have is, I’m looking at the zoning ordinance Chapter 7 for building, I’m sorry, for development plan requirements. And it talks about, um, the requirements for a development, in a NB-2 Section C, where it requires the thoroughfare studies, the traffic studies, um., D gets into the location capacity of drainage facilities, sewer systems and things like that. At what point, and I guess maybe using the ice arena would be an example,., at what point are they required to bring this up in the approval process. Typically, would that be for, before this business was done tonight, or would it be prior to final plat approval. I guess if you could give me an education on that I would appreciate it. And if you’d rather I took it offline and saw Mr. Kil in his office, I can do that also. So, I’m just wondering how that process works. Thank you.
Mr. Forbes stated that on your public comment request. I do not intend on resetting that process here at the Plan Commission, because there is opportunity to present your comments during the “public hearings” of most of the items that we discuss here. And if you do have a comment, it needs to be made “during” the public hearing, because your comments outside of the public hearing don’t actually count inside it. So, being as this board is set up differently, there is opportunity for you to discuss, during our meetings, pretty much everything that is on the agenda. Where there is not public comment opportunity, for example the authorization of a public hearing that we just gave, there is really not much to discuss there. And there again, you would have the opportunity to discuss that when it does become the public hearing in two weeks.
Sharon Pacific (again): (Mr. Forbes tried to explain that she is only allowed one turn). But I just wanna ask something about what Mr. Casboni said. When I saw the traffic study, that Steve Kil gave me, it differs greatly from what Mr. Casboni is stating, as far as the traffic. And one if the things I brought up at one of the other meetings, was why the Town doesn’t hire its own company to do the traffic study, and make the developer pay the Town, instead of the developer hiring the company that does the traffic study. Where the company that does the traffic study is answerable to the developer. Why isn’t the traffic study company answerable to you? Not the developer. Because why are Mr. Casboni’s figures so much different than what Steve Kil gave me. Any ideas?
Mr. Forbes stated that in fairness, you really can’t compare what Mr. Casboni is doing to an actual traffic study. What Mr. Casboni is doing is a traffic count, and I understand that he is spending a great deal of time out there counting cars, and I don’t doubt that there are that many cars. But what the actual traffic study does, is takes into account the vehicles, where those vehicles are going, and the condition and quality of that road. And that road is given a grade at the end of that study. So there is a significant difference between a “traffic study” and a “traffic count”. And at the end of the day, anytime this board feels that there is a need for a traffic study to be done; we tell the developer to do the study. Because they have to pay for it. That study is then reviewed by our engineering staff. I’m not going to sit here and pretend that I have the expertise to interpret a traffic study, which is why I rely on those that are skilled and have that skill-set. I guess the problem I am having is, you are saying have the Town pay for it, and then have the developer reimburse it.
Sharon Pacific (again): That’s right, then they are answerable to you!
Mr. Forbes: But I can picture someone coming up to that podium saying “Why?”, “Why do you pay for it, when the developer should pay for it out of pocket”. And at the end of the day the developer is answerable to us, based on the results of the traffic study.
Sharon Pacific (again interupted): But don’t you want it right?
Mr. Forbes stated that he has a lot of confidence in the group that we hire, and, was hired by the Schillings. They are a top notch company. And I have no doubt, or concerns, over the quality of the product that they deliver. They are not going to gear their results to favor us or whoever they are hired for. The truest fact of that is, if they were doing something to favor the Schillings, who hired First Group Engineering to study Calumet Avenue, don’t you think they’d have given that intersection at 101st and Calumet a little bit better grade than an “F”.
Sharon Pacific (again): Well, I’m not talking about that, I was talking about the numbers actually. Because I can go out there like Mr. Casboni does. And I can tell you. I have told you before, I can’t cross 101st from State Line. Nobody will let me cross. I have to go all the way back around to 113th, and go back that way. There has already been somebody killed out there on that corner. And if that continues, that’s gonna be on your shoulders, not ours. But that’s not right to people to put this on us. Where we have to try to risk our life to across 101st.
Mr. Forbes stated that this has been a long growing problem. And it’s “not solely because of the Town of St. John”. It is a cumulative problem, we have a part in it, there is no doubt, St. John has a part in it. And not just The Gates. But, Crown Point, Winfield, Cedar Lake, we are a block of the fastest growing communities in Lake County. There is no if(s), and(s) or but(s). Every year, it is between us and Crown Point as to who has the most building permits. So everyone is calling us to stop building. If we stop building, somebody is going to pick up the slack, be it Crown Point, be it Cedar Lake, be it Winfield. And that same growth is going to cause more cars to pass through the area that you are talking about. So, what we need to do, is “exactly what we are doing”. Talking to the County, trying to get all the intersections regulated. Once they are regulated, the problem is going to be minimized. It’s not going away; it will never go away. It’s not going to be the way it used to be. But, if we can get all the intersections regulated, the situation will be improved.
General discussion continued with Ms. Pacific and Mr. Forbes. Mr. Forbes advised that this discussion has gone entirely too long.
Tom Parada (9535 Joliet Street): I just wanted to bring something up. Unless you have changed the latest edition of “Robert’s Rules of Order”, and modified it to your own liking. A person is allowed to come up and make a second statement, as long as the floor is still open, and everyone else has spoken.
Mr. Forbes advised we have modified that rule in the ordinance, regarding the three (3) minute rule.
Mr. Forbes asked for any other public comment. Hearing none he closed the public portion and bring it back to the board.
Mr. Forbes entertained a motion to adjourn. Motion made by Mr. Williams, seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion carried 4 ayes – 0 nays.
(The meeting was adjourned at 8:10 p.m.)
Michelle L. Haluska, Recording Secretary
St. John Plan Commission