Nolensville Planning Commission

Regular Meeting

Nolensville Elementary School

April 10, 2007, 7:00 pm

Commissioners in attendance were Mayor Beth Lothers, Rick Owens, Willis Wells, Matt Happel, Frank Wilson, Debbie Riddle, Jimmy Alexander and Andrew Grosson.  Commissioner Bob Haines was absent.  Staff present were Robert J. Notestine, Henry Laird and Gina Lawrence.

 Agenda Item I-Call Meeting to Order

The meeting was called to order at 7:10 p. m. by Chairperson Rick Owens.

 Agenda Item II-Pledge of Allegiance

Rick Owens led the meeting in the Pledge of Allegiance.

 Agenda Item III-Approval of Minutes from March 13, 2007

Rick Owens moved to approve the minutes. Debbie Riddle seconded the motion.  The motion was approved unanimously.

 Agenda Item IV-Announcements

There were no announcements.

 Agenda Item V-Citizen Comments

Larry Gardner of 2536 York Road, noted the failure of Tant’s to come into compliance with the sign ordinance in regard to the flags on display at their business.

Attorney Notestine recalled that the Planning Commission voted not to do anything with the sign ordinance.

Mayor Lothers stated that it will be looked into and assured Mr. Gardner that official complaints are always responded to and Mr. Gardner’s official complaint will be registered accordingly.

Agenda Item VI-New Business

1. Site Plan Reviews

a. A+ Storage Facility

Lot 51 Johnson Industrial Drive

Tom Allen stated that he requested hydraulic models to demonstrate that the proposed development will not increase flood heights and will meet other regulations.  He stated that he had reviewed the model and they do meet the Town’s regulations.

Rick Owens opened the topic for discussion.

Debbie Riddle wanted clarification about whether the two lots 51 and 42 were being looked at separately or together.  Henry Laird stated that we were considering them separately.

Matt Happel pointed out that on page C4 a retaining wall shows a 30 inch pipe. The railing on a 7ft retaining wall needs to be a 42 inch railing.  Mr. Happel asked if the dumpster enclosure could have a metal or maintenance free gate.  Mr. Tommy Pierce stated that they would do a metal gate.  Mr. Happel also stated that on C6 of the landscape plan a tree should be added on the north side.  He further noted that on the building elevation on the side facing the soccer field the applicant should brick up about every thirty feet to break up the expanse.  Mr. Pierce stated that he would bring in a revised drawing   Mr. Pierce thanked Henry Laird and Tom Allen for all of the work that has gone into the project.

Rick Owens moved to approve the plan with the conditions that the revisions discussed be submitted to the town in the form of a revised sketch.  Matt Happel seconded the motion.  There was no further discussion.  The motion passed unanimously.

b. A+ Storage Facility Floodplain Use Review

Lot 42 Johnson Industrial Drive

Tom Allen stated that he reviewed the hydraulic submittal for Lot 42 and it does meet the Town’s regulations.

Rick Owens opened the topic for discussion.

Willis Wells asked if the lighting had been revised for the two lots.  Henry Laird stated that the lights were revised to be “dark sky compliant.”

Mayor Lothers asked Tom Allen for clarification about how the data is analyzed.  Mr. Allen stated that a pre development model is created and a proposed conditions model with the structure in place.  The impervious surface created by the proposed structure increases the run off so that detention must be provided so that the post development discharge is equal to the discharge prior to construction.  The flow leaving the site after the structure was constructed was no greater than the flows leaving the site before the structure was constructed.

Matt Happel asked how tall the chain link fence was that runs behind the property.  Mr. Pierce stated that is was six feet tall.  Matt Happel asked if the visible portion of the chain link fence could be painted black.  Mr. Pierce agreed.  Debbie Riddle asked what the open area would be used for.  Mr. Pierce stated that depending on demand it could be an out parcel or it could be used to build more storage.

Rick Owens moved to approve the plan upon the condition that the amendments made and a revised plan is submitted. Matt Happel seconded the motion.  There was no further discussion.  The motion passed unanimously.

c. Ken Kelley Property, 7149 Nolensville Rd

Site improvements only

Henry Laird stated that the applicant was proposing a parking lot to serve customers both in the front of the building and in the back.  Mr. Laird stated that the site was a little small to accommodate the landscape buffer requirements.  The applicant is requesting a variance for the landscape buffer from the Board of Zoning Appeals as well as a variance on the parking lot lighting requirements due to the nature of the business and the proximity to residents.  Also, a sidewalk is required in the Commercial Corridor Overlay but they are asking for a delay until commercial property is constructed around them so that there will be sidewalk to meet up with theirs.

Kenneth Kelly took the podium.

Jimmy Alexander asked the applicant if he was still amenable to having a shared driveway with the property to the south.  Mr. Kelly indicated that he was fine with that plan as long as the legal issues were addressed.

Matt Happel asked if Mr. Kelly were agreeable to maintenance on the painted brick exterior.  Mr. Kelly stated that most of the building was going to be his office and he would absolutely maintain the exterior of the building.

Mr. Happel also wanted to know if the applicant was still going to change the roof to black and make the front porch a gable with wrought iron and columns.  Mr. Kelly said that he was.  Mr. Happel asked about the tight angle on the side of the parking lot.  Mr. Kelley stated that they were trying to maintain the landscaping on the side of the building.

Jimmy Alexander stated that the interior of the office looked great.

Matt Happel asked if Mr. Kelley were willing to come before the Planning Commission for the sign approval.  Mr. Kelley agreed.  Bob Notestine stated that the applicant may need to go before the Board of Zoning Appeals.  Henry Laird stated that it might be something that can be handled with a permit issued from Town Hall.

Rick Owens asked if Mr. Kelley would submit a revised plan reflecting the discussed changes.  Mr. Kelley agreed.

Matt Happel moved to approve the plan pending submittal of revised plan reflecting the changes discussed.  Debbie Riddle seconded the motion.  There was no further discussion.  The motion passed unanimously.

 1. Zoning Amendment Proposals

a. Revisions authorizing the Planning Commission to grant variances relating to landscaping and parking lot lighting.


Henry Laird stated that he was recommending changes to the text of the Zoning Ordinance in the Landscaping Section which is an Appendix and to Article 8.22 Performance Standards for Exterior Lighting as it pertains to Parking Lots.  When someone submits a site plan the Planning Commission oversees all aspects of zoning but only has authority to make adjustments to the number of parking spaces and some flexibility in landscaping.   Because of that they have to go to Board of Zoning Appeals and the Planning Commission for the same site plan on items that could be handled by the Planning Commission.  Mr. Laird recommended that Appendix B, Landscaping, Item 1.2.2, F should have security added.  He also added an item G which would give the Planning Commission the ability to grant a variance.  The current ordinance says if you have 10 or more parking spaces you are required to have lighting.  Often a variance to the lighting requirement is requested because of the nature of the property including proximity to residences and hours of operation.  Mr. Laird further recommended changing Item A to read that all luminaries should be deemed “dark sky compliant.”

Rick Owens clarified that the purpose of the changes are to minimize red tape, streamline the process and make it easier on the applicant.  He stated that he would like to make sure that there are adequate safeguards in place and would like to take some time to look at it.  Mr. Owens then opened the topic for discussion

Mayor Lothers stated that she thought that the amendment was practical.  Alderman Alexander wanted to make sure that the granting of variances would be in conjunction with site plan approval.  Frank Wilson stated that he thought that the amendment made sense.  Bob Notestine stated that Henry Laird’s method of presenting proposed amendments was the best that he had ever seen.

Matt Happel moved to approve the recommendation.   Frank Wilson seconded.  There was no further discussion.  The motion passed unanimously.

a. Revisions to Village District area and lot standards; adding Floor Area Ratio and Impervious Surface Ratio criteria

Henry Laird stated that the specific area and lot requirements for commercial buildings in the Village need to be cleared up.  Mr. Laird reviewed the way the ordinance currently reads and then outlined the proposed changes.  Mr. Laird recommended that under Area and Lot Requirements where it reads “Maximum Gross Density” and “Minimum Lot Density” the wording Residential Only should be added.  Also, where it says “8,000 square feet” it should say “8,000 square feet per building.”  There should also be a Maximum Impervious Surface Ratio for Non Residential Mixed Use set at 0.40 and Floor Area Ratio of 0.35 for Non Residential Mixed Use.  Also, a footnote should be added that states that the “Floor Area Ratio would apply to the area of lot which is not restricted by waterway natural area or floodway buffer zone.”  Right now what we have states that regardless of how much property you have you are limited to one building at 8,000 square feet on the first floor.  Mr. Laird stated that The Town should institute something like this regardless of the actual figures.

Matt Happel asked if any other towns have reduced the 8,000 square feet to 6,000.  Mr. Laird stated that he had not seen that.  Most towns use Floor Area Ratio.  Mr. Laird stated that he only used the 8,000 square foot figure because it was in the zoning ordinance already and he thought that it was there for a reason.

Mayor Lothers stated that she thought that the 8,000 square feet seemed large for the Village.  She stated that she was concerned that all applicants would go for the largest building possible.

Larry Gardner of 2536 York Road, asked what size lot the 8,000 square foot first floor area applied to. He also questioned if whether you could have a commercial building on a lot that has been cut and filled.  Matt Happel stated that .64 acres was the answer to Mr. Gardner’s initial question.  Mr. Gardner had several questions in connection with the McCord property.

Mr. Laird stated that he was proposing this amendment to cover the entire Village district not just the one particular project.  Mr. Wilson state that he believed that a specific tract of land could not be cut and filled for the specific reason of subdividing.

Rick Owens asked Tom Allen if he was comfortable with the .40 figure.  Mr. Allen stated that as long as the quality and quantity of water leaving the lot is the same before construction as it is after construction then he was comfortable.

Mayor Lothers asked if we needed to clarify what we mean by buildable area.  Mr. Allen stated that he thought that Mr. Laird’s note clarified it.

Matt Happel asked how other board members felt about lowering the minimum square footage.  Debbie Riddle stated that she would support a reduction.

Mayor Lothers asked Michael Blanks to take the podium and give an example of a building in town with an 8000 square foot first floor.  Mr. Blanks stated that there were homes in Ballenger Farms were 5,500 square feet. Mr. Blanks stated that building codes would also limit the size of the buildings.  He stated that just because the size of the lot allows them to have an 8000 square foot first floor doesn’t mean that codes will allow it.

Mayor Lothers asked if it were necessary to approve the recommendation tonight.

Matt Happel suggested just getting the Floor Area Ratio approved tonight and just changing the other figure later.

Rick Owens moved to approve the recommended changes to the Area and Lot Requirements for the Village, the Floor Area Ratio for Non Residential Mixed Use, the Residential Only Maximum Gross Density and the Impervious Surface Ratio with the footnotes to be noted on the chart to the Board of Mayor and Aldermen.  Willis Wells seconded the motion.  The topic was opened for discussion.  Mayor Lothers asked for clarification as to whether the Board of Mayor and Aldermen would have the opportunity to look at the numbers and possibly adjust them.  Bob Notestine stated that there would be a first public hearing and a second public hearing Board of Mayor and Aldermen can take the recommendation and if there needs to be changes they can get it done.

Agenda Item VII-Old Business

Mayor Lothers asked for clarification as to whether Willis Wells would be attending the upcoming Williamson County Planning Commission meeting.  Mr. Wells stated that he would be attending.

Agenda Item VIII-Other Business

2. Set performance bond amount for Bent Creek Phase 5, Sec. 2

Applicant has requested to defer until the May meeting.  There were no objections.  The request was granted by acclamation.

3. Monthly Bond Report

Mr. Laird reported that there are 5,027,019.40 in performance bonds.  Ballenger Farms is due to expire and have been notified via registered mail and have called to ask for information about extension or changing to a maintenance bond.  The have until the April 14th to respond.

Debbie Riddle moved to approve the Bond Report.  Matt Happel seconded the motion. The motion was approved unanimously.

Agenda Item IX-Adjournment

The meeting was adjourned at 8:45 p. m.

Respectfully submitted,


Gina Lawrence                                                                                    Date

Recording Secretary




Matt Happel                                                                            Date

Planning Commission Secretary