By Kate Knight
The Town of Hull Plan Commission met Wednesday evening for a public hearing on two requests by resident Kyle Kluck to amend the Town of Hull Comprehensive Plan.
The first request proposes to change the land use designation for Kluck’s land parcel from rural residential to commercial, while the second request poses a rezoning of that same parcel from single family residence and general agricultural district to C-4 highway commercial district.”
The plan commission discussed comprehensive plan amendment requests at a previous meeting in January, but then tabled the requests at that time.
Several residents spoke during the public hearing portion of the meeting, voicing concerns that proposed land use and zoning changes might disturb the current low-traffic residential neighborhoods surrounding the parcel in question.
John Holdridge, town chairman, quelled concerns of increased traffic in the neighborhoods of Jordan Road, Ponderosa Drive and the Patrician Pines subdivision. “We have no interest in running more traffic through subdivisions,” Holdridge said.
Chris Mrdutt, assistant zoning administrator for the Portage County Planning and Zoning Department, further explained and answered questions regarding the two amendment requests.
According to Mrdutt, C-4 highway commercial zoning for the parcel was proposed “because of the existing use and land use that is happening right now.” The parcel in question is currently used as a contractor storage yard and has access to a state road (highway 66), therefore making it appropriate to rezone as C-4, Mrdutt explained.
Mrdutt added that any additional, future changes to the use of the land would also be subject to Board of Adjustment and Town Board approvals. “If that would change to automobile wrecking … that would have to go through board of adjustment and town meetings,” Mrdutt said. “… We’d have a lot of listening sessions … a change in use would require a lot of approvals.”
Hull is currently working to update its comprehensive plan, future land use map and zoning map – ultimately to make land use consistent with zoning. “The goal is to make zoning evaluated before hand, so that when maps are updated we can look at current land use,” Mrdutt said. “In this case, the land was being used for something else before we updated the zoning.”
Commissioners discussed meeting for an onsite visit at Kluck’s parcel before making an official decision regarding the land use change request. “I still think we ought to go out and look at the site because what we do goes to the town board,” Holdridge said.
Contingent upon an onsite walk-through of the parcel, the plan commission unanimously passed a recommendation onto the town board to approve the land use change request. The commission will confirm its decision at a future meeting date, yet to be determined.
The agenda item to take action on Kluck’s second request – rezoning of the parcel – was tabled for a later meeting of the plan commission.
A board of adjustment variance request for an unattached, secondary garage on the property of Lance and Wendy Trzebiatowski was also discussed during Wednesday’s meeting.
The proposed 30-by-50-foot garage would be positioned outside the town’s right-of-way, but within the building setback along Ben’s Lane. Neighbors of the Trzebiatowskis were sent notices, to which positive, supporting responses were received.
The plan commission unanimously supported the Trzebiatowskis’ variance request and passed its recommendation onto the board of adjustment, which will make a decision on the request.
The next Hull Plan Commission meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 17, 2016.