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Recap: Planning and Development Committee

Here's a recap of our live coverage of this evening's Evanston City Council Planning and Development Committee meeting.

A packet with information on tonight's agenda items is available online.

Meeting called to order at 7:30 p.m.

Minutes approved.

P1 – Special use permit for a single family home at 1513 Greenleaf.

It's in a B1 business district. Alderman Don Wilson, 4th Ward, requests immediate action tonight so construction can get started before the weather closes in.

Approved.

P2 – Special use for Barre Code at 604 Davis St., a commercial indoor recreation business.

Alderman Melissa Wynne, 3rd Ward, says one letter raised concerns saying dumpster not kept on property, neighboring property owner complained.

Andy Spatz, 1216 Main St., property owner at 604 Davis, says it was a problem with Groot — they like to put it wherever they want to. Says are putting dumpsters down the alley with about eight others. Says thinks problem has been resolved.

In response to question from Alderman Don Wilson, 4th Ward, Spatz says are building a "room within a room" to dampen the noise. Says he owns the building and doesn't want to have any problems with his other tenants.

Approved.

P3 – Special use for Domino's Pizza at 911 Foster St.

Alderman Judy Fiske, 1st Ward, says she's had a lot of calls from residents concerned about late night deliveries, says she will be voting against the special use.

Domino's franchisee says he's been with Domino's for 20 years, says takes into consideration the community impact. Says have been working with the city for a couple of years to find a location here.

Says trains right next to the store run until 2 a.m. so will have noise issues regardless. Says plan to have incoming supply deliveries in the morning. Says will have his delivery drivers either park across the street in an NU lot (with the university's permission) or behind the store.

Alderman Delores Holmes, 5th Ward, says he's been discussing bringing the store to town since last spring. Says one resident at zoning meeting came to speak about noise. Says thinks have worked out really good solution. Says she recommended to suspend the rules so could get started as soon as possible, says there are now a lot of vacancies in the neighborhood. Says thinks the business will be a benefit to the neighborhood.

Franchisee says will have a new "theater" concept. More of a Chipolte style approach. Says will have crew making pizzas in front of customers. Will be a "dough show" for kids.

Says knows it's been a while since there's been a Domino's in Evanston. Says about 450 of 5500 total units are the new concept. He's going to be building 20 of them in the Chicago area.

Fiske says its a very concentrated neighborhood — says delivery people are racing through, don't turn their radios down, says there are all sorts of problems there.

Franchisee says does heavy-duty inspections of drivers and be careful. Says will stop deliveries at midnight during the week. Also planning to do bicycle deliveries … and being carry-out only after certain hours.

Rainey asks Fiske why suspend rules if don't have a plan for revisions?

Fiske says just want to give neighbors time to voice concerns.

Motion to suspend rules fails. Motion to introduce the special use is approved.

P4 – Text amendments to Central Street Overlay District.

John Walsh, of Central Street Neighbors, says the ordinance would remove many protections for neighboring residential property owners.

Complains about "canyonization" of Central Street and voices fears that new development would displace existing small business owners.

Says need to reduce development density or it will undermine the integrity of the neighborhood.

Alderman Jane Grover, 7th Ward, says the text amendments are the result of a fine staff process and great conversations with the neighbors and business owners.

Says original plan got it about 95 percent right. Need to fix the rest now.

Says existing rules make it very difficult for developers and architects to bring in variations that would benefit the neighbors.

Alderman Mark Tendam, 6th Ward, agrees with Grover, says prohibitions as they stand now prevent creative development.

Approved.

P5 – Special use for a child day care center at 1909-1911 Howard St.

Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, says use has been a long time coming. Space has been vacant for long time. Says Vet Center on the corner has stabilized the area and this will be another good addition. Says has received no complaints about this use, so requests suspension of the rules for final approval tonight. Move to suspend rules is approved. Introduction approved.

PD1 – Discussion item on implementation of the West Egvanston Plan postpoined untikl Dec. 8

Meeting adjourned at 8:02 p.m.

 

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