Planning Board Minutes 9/24/2009

Planning Board

Borough of Kenilworth

September 24, 2009

The meeting began with an affirmation of the Open Public Meetings Act requirements: The schedule of meetings is on file in the Borough Clerks� office, was posted on the bulletin board, and has been mailed to the Cranford Chronicle, the Kenilworth Leader, and the Star Ledger.� All present recited the Pledge of Allegiance. The Board approved the August, 2009 minutes.� Approval was given to pay the Recording Secretary.

Roll Call:Mr. Lepore, Mr. Herbert, Mr. Cirillo, Mr. Pugliese, Mr. Sica, Mr. Laurie, Mr. Picerno, Mr. Cammarota, and Ms. Bogus (who arrived later).� Absent: Mr. Pantina.� NOTE: Mayor, councilmen, and mayors-designee are not eligible to vote on Board of Adjustment matters.

Communications:There were no communications to report.

Minor Sub-division Committee Report:� Mr. Cammarota and the other minor sub-division committee members deemed the following sub-divisions approved:� Application #11-09 & 09-05,� RAF, Inc. RE:� 657 & 663 Michigan Avenue, Block 1, Lots 3 & 4.

Mr. Cammarota noted that this application does not require a variance for the expansion of non-conforming use.� Mr. Herbert noted the court ordered this property be sub-divided.

Mr. Lepore called for a vote to approve this resolution:� A motion to approve was made by Mr. Cammarota, 2nd by Mr. Herbert.� All in favor:� Mr. Lepore, Mr. Herbert,� Mr. Cirillo, Mr. Pugliese, Mr. Sica, Mr. Laurie, Mr. Picerno, and Mr. Cammarota.�

Application # (09-04), Paparatto Realty, RE:234 N. 19th St, Block 39, Lot 8.� A motion to approve this resolution was made by Mr. Cammarota, 2nd by Mr. Picerno.� All in favor:� Mr. Lepore, Mr. Herbert,� Mr. Cirillo, Mr. Pugliese, Mr. Sica, Mr. Laurie, Mr. Picerno, and Mr. Cammarota.�

Application # (90-03), Paparatto Realty, RE:234 N. 18th St., Block 38, Lot 8.� The sub-committee recommends that if a deed is used to record this sub-division, it should cite the utility easement located within the sub-divided lots and shown on the sub-division plot plan.� Mr. Sica made a motion to approve this resolution, 2nd by Mr. Pugliese.� All in favor:��� Mr. Lepore, Mr. Herbert,� Mr. Cirillo, Mr. Pugliese, Mr. Sica, Mr. Laurie, Mr. Picerno, and Mr. Cammarota.�


Mr. Cirillo suggested the sub-division committee members be mentioned as a matter of public record.� They are : Mr. Cammarota, Ms. Bogus and Mr. Herbert.

Mr. Lepore asked the Board to hear Applications #08-09 and #09-09 before application #07-09.�

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New Business: Application #08-09, Mod-Fran, Inc., RE: 547 Boulevard, Block 117, Lot 21. A Use Variance for four 1-bedroom apartments on the 2nd floor (LC zone).

Mr. Cirillo was recused due to conflict of interest.� Mr. Cammarota was also recused.� Mr. Nelson Wolf is the attorney representing Mr. Palmadesso for both Application #08-09 and Application #09-09.� Both applications are requesting the same use variance.�

He presented two copies of affadavits of notification, as required.� Sworn in:� Mr. Peter Palmadesso, 103 South 21st Street.� At 547 Boulevard, he is requesting four units be changed from office use (C zone) to four apartments, not changing the footprint.� He said the parking at this site is adaquate for four apartments.� The Boulevard has mixed uses.� His opinion is that apartments are needed in Kenilworth.� He also believes it would be a safety factor for the commercial property located on the first floor.� Exhibits A-1 (plans for the apartments) and A-2 (survey and tax map) were presented.� Sworn in:� Mr. Anthony D�Agastino, 73 Maybelle Drive, Clark, N.J., a licensed real estate broker.� He believes this use would be suited for this area with no detriment to the zone ordinance, and with no adverse effect on the surrounding properties.� He said currently, there are only four residential areas for rent in Kenilworth.�

Mr. Pugliese asked if the upstair units are currently occupied.� Only one unit is currently rented (in 550 Boulevard).� Mr. Lepore inquired about sufficient fire escape routes.� Mr. Palmadesso showed two seperate entrances to each building.� Each apartment will be single bedroom units.� Mr. Herbert said the fire department has a right to inspections, at any time, on any apartments that are not owner-occupied. Mr. D�Agastino said his client will abide by any requirements.�

Mr. Palmadesso said the four exising units have been vacant since 1976.� The discussion was open to the public.� Sworn in: Ms. Rosemary Palmer, 17 No. 23rd Street.� She is objecting to the apartments at 550 Boulevard.�

A motion to approve Application #08-09 to Resolution was made by Mr. Herbert, 2nd by Mr. Picerno.� All in favor:� Mr. Pugliese, Mr. Sica, Mr. Herbert, Mr. Lepore, and Mr. Picerno.� Opposed: Mr. Laurie.

Mr. Wolf said his applicant will comply with all regulations.��

Application #09-09, Palmadesso, RE: 550 Boulevard, Block 83, Lots 2 & 24. A Use Variance for four 1-bedroom apartments on the 2nd floor (LC zone).

Mr. Wolf, attorney for the applicant, said he has the necessary notifications.� He showed the architectural plans, survey, and tax maps.� Mr. Palmadesso said there is an office on the second floor (over the jewelry store) rented on a month-to-month basis.�

There are eight units at this at this address, that require only eight of the ten parking spaces.� Mr. Picerna said space number 10 should be removed from the drawings, as it appears to be in a right-of-way.� Mr. D�Agastino spoke in favor of this variance.�

The discussion was open to the public.� Ms. Palmer is opposed to this change of use.� She said parking is presently a problem due to a nearby church use (during services) and

trucks that supply the stores and the restaurant.� The increased traffic entering and exiting the rear parking lot may endanger pedestrians.� She asked if the tenants can park on the Boulevard overnight.�

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Mr. Wolf replied that eight people working in the potential upstairs units would create more traffic than a couple owning two cars.

Ms. Palmer said she lives nearby.� She sees the trucks backing up and she is worried about the increased need for parking as well as the potential hazard to pedestrians.�

Sworn in:� Mr. James Kennedy, Optician at 552 Boulevard.� He stated the parking configuration is tight, verifying this by passing around photos of the present parking situation.� He is also concerned about the garbage (generated by the apartment use).� The Board of Health has been contacted many times because of the overflow of garbage in the dumpster behind the Chinese restaurant.� He asked if garbage bags would be placed on the Boulevard for pick up.� He also mentioned there are windows on the 2nd floor that were not in the original architectural plan.�

Mr. Palmadesso said the restaurant dumpster will be sufficient for four additional apartments upstairs. He said only one or two trucks a week come to this property. �He said the windows were present in the original buildings.� However, if the resolution is approved, Mr. Palmadesso would add another dumpster.�

A motion to approve this application to resolution was made by Mr. Herbert, 2nd by Mr. Sica.� All in favor: Mr. Pugliese, Mr. Sica, Mr. Herbert, Mr. Lepore, and Mr. Picerno.� Opposed: Mr. Laurie.�

Old Business:Application #7-09, Badali, 10 N. 24th St., Block 74, Lot 25,

Variance/ 2-family in R-2 zone.� Mr. Steven Heil, attorney for this applicant, said this is a unique situation: it is an oversized lot in a split zone.� It was used as a two family in the past.� He produced a letter from Mr. Lane, former Board Attorney, which stated a

similar application (made by a former owner) was dismissed without prejudice.

Mr. Herbert believes this is a pre-existing, non-conforming use.� Mr. O�Brien said the applicant must show a (two-family) use prior to the adoption of the zoning ordinance.

Mr. Tripodi said this is a two-part application: a request for a Certificate of Occupancy, and a request for a Use Variance.� Tax documents and Zoning Officer letters indicate

the property would be a single family use.�

Mr. Herbert said in the 2001 testimony, there was an existing two kitchens, two bathrooms, and two separate meters.� Mr. Heil said the records indicate this property is single-family, but, despite this, it has been used as a two family, taxed as a one family.�

Mr. Ed Kolling, professional planner, is still under oath from the previous month.� A letter, dated 2001, from Mr. Rica, prior zoning official, stated this is a single family dwelling with an extra kitchen.� The tax records has indicated this is a two family house, serving a single family.� This house has had two separate living units, since the 1950�s.� Letters from 2001 and 1987 indicate two kitchens were present.� He believes granting a two family use to this property will not set a precident, because of� the unique situation.� It would not have a negative impact on the neighborhood and Kenilworth needs more rental units.� This meets the positive and negative criteria.� Regarding the parking issue, most of the streets have �spill-over� parking from the Commercial use on the Boulevard.� There are two parking areas (alongside the house) and also a 2-car garage.�

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Mr. Cirillo asked what percentage of the property is in the commercial zone.� Mr. Kolling said about 12 � %, which includes the easement, is in the C zone.� Access to the parking on this property is not impeded by the easement.�

Mr. Cirillo mentioned a 2002 letter requested the owner to remove the extra meter.� A permit, issued in 2001, was granted for an upgraded service.� It is not known when the extra gas meter was added.� Mr. Laurie asked if there were any other two family homes in this area. �The answer is �no�.� Mr. Kolling said there will always be one family member living in this house, until the property is sold.� A condition of resolution could be that the property must be �owner-occupied�.� Mr. Tripodi said this could present a legal problem, and may not be enforceable.�

Mr. O�Brien referred to questions on his report.� Fences are not shown on the existing survey, he asked the applicant if there is anything else not shown.� He also asked if there is a �business use� on this property, due to trucks parked in the driveway.� Mr. Badali responded that he has a business at 210 Market Street, and has since removed the trucks from the residential area.� All necessary permits were taken out for renovations.

The meeting was open to the public.� Bill Urban, 24th Street, is still under oath.

The discussions about multiple kitchens does not indicate is has been used as a two-family house, since many Italian families have a second kitchen for single family use.� Parking is prohibitive; just crossing the street is dangerous.� Sworn in: Mr. Latore, 200 North 18th Street.� He said there was a rental in 1956 at that property.

Mr. Heil said this house has historically been used as a two-family, despite the tax records.� He said it should be approved also as a Use Variance, because of the abundance of parking.� He is� reqesting a Certificate of Occupancy and a Use Variance for his client.

Mr. Tripodi said the Certificate of Occupancy for a non-conforming use should be voted on first.� A motion to approve this part of the application was made by Mr.� Herbert, 2nd by Mr. Pugliese.� All in favor: Mr. Pugliese, Mr. Sica, Mr. Herbert, and Ms. Bogus.� Opposed: Mr. Cirillo, Mr. Lepore, and Mr. Laurie.�

The second part of the application, request for a Use Variance, was withdrawn by the applicant.�

Other Comments for the Good of the Board

Adjournment: The meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Janet M. Murphy,

Planning Board Recording Secretary

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