Planning & Zoning Minutes - January 5, 2017

January 5, 2017


January 5, 2017

Pursuant to due call and notice thereof, a regular meeting of the Planning and Zoning Commission of the City of Saint Peter was conducted in the Governors' Room of the Community Center on January 5, 2017.  A quorum present, Community Development Director Wille called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m.  The following members were present:  Commissioners Joe Urban, Jeff Brand, Ken Rossow, and Andy Davis were in attendance.  Commission member absent was John Kvamme.  City staff present were Community Development Director Russ Wille and Administrative Secretary Cindy Moulton. 

Approval of Agenda – A motion was made by Rossow, seconded by Urban, to approve the agenda as presented.  With all in favor, the agenda was approved. 

ELECTION OF OFFICERS - A motion was made by Rossow, seconded by Brand to nominate Davis as Chairperson.  With no further nominations, all members voting aye, Davis was elected Chair. 

A motion was made by Urban, seconded by Davis to nominate Urban as Vice Chairperson.  With no further nominations, all members voting aye, Urban was elected Vice Chair. 

Approval of Minutes – A motion was made by Urban, seconded by Rossow, to approve the minutes of the October 6, 2016 regular Planning and Zoning meeting.  With all voting aye, the minutes were approved as presented.

Public Hearing  Preliminary Plat Welco West #3

Wille stated that the City Council approved the Final Plat of Welco West No.2 subdivision which was submitted by Mike and Julie Drummer in 2014.  The new plat significantly altered the development plan of the neighborhood which had been subject to tax forfeiture.

Wille said the original plat of Welco West allowed for the construction of slab-on-grade, owner occupied duplexes and triplex residential structures on 109 lots.  The replatted subdivision envisioned by construction 11 additional attached townhouse residential units, 32 single family homes and a forty unit multi-family structure north of Meridian Street.

Drummer has determined that there is not a market to support the construction of duplex and triplex units.  Drummers have asked the City Council to accept a replatting that would eliminate the parcels developed to support the triplex developments.  

Wille added that replatting and eliminating the triplexes would allow for a less dense neighborhood.  Wille recommended approval.
Davis opened the public hearing at 5:45 p.m.

Carol Dorzinsky, 2047 Pratt Circle, said she was under the impression that the subdivision would be townhouses and geared towards seniors.

Nate Myhra, Survey Services, said he was unsure of the style of homes but indicated that the intent was to construct patio homes and possibly twin homes.  Drummer also intends to incorporate an association. Dorzinsky also added that Drummers said the patio homes would not be “cookie cutter” homes but that is what they ended up being. 

Jim Bonilla, 1930 Traverse Road, felt that the reason for a public hearing was to hear the publics input.  He wondered why the City is recommending approval if they haven’t listened to the public.

Sue Seitzer, 2053 Pratt Circle, questioned when the Building Code took effect requiring sprinkler systems be installed for 3 or more units.

Bonilla said he was aware of the chronic shortage of rentals but felt there was a lack of oversight regarding the construction of the multi-family units.  He indicated that there is a great deal of trash blowing onto his property from the construction site. 

Bonilla asked who Drummer intended to rent the apartments to and expressed his concern with students occupying the units.  Wille stated that Drummer cannot discriminate and that credit and reference checks usually are done prior to renting out a unit.   

Bonilla also expressed his concern with the lack of parking spaces.  He said he was concerned that overflow parking will move to the street.

Bonilla recommended that the City issue fines for littering, table the issue until residents get more information, and that the Planning & Zoning institute a moratorium on 3 story apartments.

Don Fosburgh, 2055 Pratt Circle, said that it was his understanding the apartments are to be directed towards young professionals.    He also asked if Drummer is required to plant trees or add landscaping.  Wille indicated that it is not a requirement of a private developer.  He stated that the Welco Development has changed considerably since Westerman owned the property. 

Rossow asked the guests if they had any objections to single family homes being constructed in the subdivision.

Dorzinsky said she liked the fact that it was a senior living area.  She indicated that she would be unhappy if young families and children became residents of the area..

Rossow said that there is no way of knowing who will purchase property in the neighborhood or rent an apartment.

It was suggested by the residents that if the City Council approves amending the plat, the contract should state that only single level, slab on grade homes, geared toward seniors be allowed.

Davis closed the public hearing at 6:14 p.m.

Urban asked if the lots would remain empty if the City Council did not approve amending the plat.  Myhra said there would be a good chance they would remain vacant.

Brand assured the residents that he would pass on their concerns to the City Council. 

Rossow was sympathetic to the “cookie cutter” homes.  Myhra stated that when potential buyers choose a style of home, Drummer needs to honor their request.  Myhra will pass on the information to Drummers.

A motion was made by Urban, seconded by Rossow to introduce Resolution No. 2017-01 entitled, “Resolution Recommending Approval Of The Preliminary Plat of Welco West. No. 3 Subdivision”.  All members voting aye, the resolution was passed and adopted.

Granny Pods

Wille indicated that he did not have any information on granny pods other than the City may develop a granny pod ordinance.


Michael Keller (441 Skaro) Variance Request-   Keller has submitted a variance request to allow him to construct a garage on his property.  A public hearing will be held at the February Planning & Zoning meeting.

Northern Con-Agg (Outlot A) Rezoning Request – Wille said that Outlot A in the Hallett’s Pond    Subdivision is not a desirable lot for commercial development because of the lack of visibility.  The interested buyer of the property has petitioned to rezone the property to R-3.  A public hearing will be held at the February Planning & Zoning meeting.    


There being no further business, a motion was made by Rossow, seconded by Brand, to adjourn.  With all in favor, the motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 6:32 p.m.