Historic District Commission Meeting Minutes – August 3, 2016

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HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION

AUGUST 3, 2016

Acting Chair Nancy McGuire called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m. In attendance were Commission members Ted Gallo, Barbara Jorgenson, Ed Minch and Alice Ritchie, Kees de Mooy, Zoning Administrator, Jennifer Mulligan, Town Clerk and guests.

Ms. McGuire stated that the Chestertown Historic District Commission takes its authority from Chapter 93 of the Code of the Town of Chestertown and operates under the Historic District Design Guidelines that were adopted by the Mayor and Council of Chestertown on October 7, 2002 and revised March 7, 2012.

Ms. McGuire asked if there were any additions or corrections to the minutes of the meeting of July 6, 2016. Ms. Jorgenson moved to approve the minutes as submitted, was seconded by Ms. Ritchie and carried unanimously.

The first item on the agenda was BP2016-52 from Vimi Properties at 113 S. College Avenue for a shed. The application was moved to the bottom of the agenda as there was no representative present.

The next item on the agenda was BP2016-65 from Creative Treatments Shutters & Blinds and Bill Short at 329 High Street for a sign. Mr. Bill Short was present for the application. Ms. McGuire read the application into the record. Mr. Short stated that the sign will be placed where the “Chestertown Pharmacy” sign was located. There was a photo of the proposed sign for the record. Ms. Jorgenson moved to approve BP2016-65 from Creative Treatments Shutters & Blinds for a sign as presented at 329 High Street as it was in compliance with the Historic District Design Guidelines, was seconded by Mr. Gallo and carried unanimously.

The next item on the agenda was BP2016-81 from Ingrid Hansen for a sign for Figg’s Ordinary. There was nobody present for the application so it was moved to the end of the agenda.

The next items on the agenda were items BP2016-76 (Lot 1) at 515 Cannon Street and BP2016-75 (Lot 2) at 517 Cannon Street from Alden Yetman for 2 single family houses. Mr. Yetman was present for the application. At the time the permits were filed the properties were listed as 515 Cannon Street, Lots 1 and 2.

Mr. Yetman stated that both properties will have Hardiplank siding and asphalt shingles on the roof. There will be a shared driveway between the houses to allow for off-street parking for both houses. Both houses will be between 24’ and 26’ in height, in keeping with other houses on the street. He said that he would like to use Viwinco vinyl windows, 2-over-2, on the front of the house and 1-over-1 on the sides and rear. He said that he was trying to build affordable houses with quality products and would like to save money where he can.

Ms. McGuire read the portion of the Design Guidelines relating to new construction.

Ms. Jorgenson asked if the crepe myrtle on the lot would be cut down. Mr. Yetman stated that it had to be cut down. Mr. Yetman stated that the drawings he was showing were not to scale, but he was trying to show the Commission how the houses would look on the street. The interior ceilings would be 9’ on the first floor and 8’ on the second floor in both houses.

Ms. Jorgenson stated that she was concerned with setbacks and if there was enough room to meet them. Mr. Yetman stated that he had to be 3’ from the property line, noting that the house did fall within the setback, but the chimney went into the setback which was permitted in the Zoning Ordinance. There would be 15’ to 16’ between the houses, with a driveway 10’ to 12’ wide.

Mr. Minch stated that the house adjacent to 517 Cannon Street has a small overhang and said that a similar overhang would add character to the house. Mr. Yetman agreed.

Mr. Minch stated that adding an A-line roof over the front door wider than the door itself on the proposed house at 515 would distinguish the architecture from the house at 517 Cannon.

Mr. Yetman showed a sample of a Viwinco window and said that it was well-constructed with a good energy rating. The windows he was proposing to use were 3’ wide. He said that he would use a 3” trim board surrounding each window. Mr. Yetman stated that he was planning to use dividers in the windows on the front of the house, but not on the sides and rear as they would not be too visible from the street. He said that he installed the same windows at 617 Cannon Street and they were approved.

Mr. Yetman stated that he would like to use Nichiha cementitious siding with a wood grain and composite trim. He said that he was considering aluminum fascia on areas that were covered by gutters on the side. Gable ends and exposed areas on the front façade would be composite material. Ms. McGuire stated that only smooth siding has been allowed in the Historic District.

Ms. Jorgenson stated that the changes the Commission would like to see is an increased overhang on Lot 1 (517 Cannon Street), smooth cementitious siding on both houses, dividers in the windows on the front and sides of both houses, and increasing the overhang at the front door on Lot 2 (515 Cannon Street).

Mr. de Mooy asked if the Commission would feel differently about the windows if there were no divisions on the front windows at all, as the house across the street was 1-over-1, as is the house to the right of the proposed houses. Ms. Jorgenson stated that the 2-over-2 windows would look better on both houses than 1-over-1, at least on the front and side elevations.

Mr. Gallo asked for clarification as to where the front door would be located at 515 Cannon Street as the drawings showed different locations. Mr. Yetman stated that the door would be on the side closest to the driveway.

Mr. Yetman stated that the chimney proposed on the house at 517 Cannon would be painted block to match the color of the house.

Ms. Jorgenson moved to approve BP2016-75 from Alden Yetman for new construction at 517 Cannon Street (Lot 1) as submitted with the understanding that there will be an increased overhang on the roof, smooth cementations siding, 2-over-2 Viwinco on all windows, and 3” trim around the windows, as all elements were in accordance with the Design Guidelines for new construction, was seconded by Mr. Minch and carried unanimously.

Ms. Jorgenson moved to approve BP2016-76 from Alden Yetman for new construction at 515 Cannon Street (Lot 2) as submitted with the understanding that there will be an A-frame roof over the front door at least 1’ wider (6” on each side) than the front door, smooth cementitious siding and 2-over-2 Viwinco windows on all windows with 3” trim as all elements were in accordance with the Design Guidelines for new construction, was seconded by Ms. Ritchie and carried unanimously.

Ms. McGuire stated that BP2016-81 from Ingrid Hansen for a sign at 207 S. Cross Street for “Figg’s Ordinary” was in the audience. Ms. Hansen stated that the sign as proposed would be chocolate brown with blue lettering as shown in the photos. Ms. Jorgenson moved to approve BP2016-81 from Ingrid Hansen for a sign reading “Figg’s Ordinary” at 207 S. Cross Street as it was in accordance with the Historic District Design Guidelines, was seconded by Mr. Minch and carried unanimously.

The next item on the agenda was BP2016-77 from David & Lorraine Slama and Andover Homes for exterior renovations at 400 and 402 N. Kent Street. In attendance for the application was Mr. Lee Weldon from Andover Home Designs and owners, David and Lorraine Slama.

Mr. Weldon stated that there was an outbuilding behind the house at 400 N. Kent Street and the Slama’s would like to repurpose the space for aging in place. He said that the existing roofline was a 1970’s look which he would like to simplify and make more in keeping by constructing a simple gable roof and shed dormer. The height of the new gable would be the same as the existing roof. There was an exterior staircase in the rear of the building which will be replaced to meet code. All finishes will be updated and a couple windows will be added to the front façade on the gables.

Mr. Weldon stated that he would like to use cement board siding in board and batten style with shingles on the gables. Parking will remain as is.

Mr. Minch stated that he had to leave the meeting but said that he approved the Slama’s project as submitted.

Ms. Jorgenson moved to approve BP2016-77 from David and Lorraine Slama for exterior renovations, including materials, as submitted as it was in keeping with the Historic Design Guidelines, was seconded by Mr. Gallo and carried unanimously.  

The next item on the agenda was BP2016-78 from Ramunno/QA13 Architects for construction of three townhouses at 226, 228 & 230 South Water Street. Ms. Paula Beall of QA13 Architects was present for the application.

Ms. Beall stated that this project was for vacant lots at the end of South Water Street across from the Scott’s Point Condominiums. She said that included in the package before the Commission were photos of existing homes along South Water Street and South Queen Street so the Commission could see all of the different architectural styles and periods on the block.

Ms. Beall stated that the townhouses will be built on three (3) separate lots with parking in the back. Mr. Ramunno and the Town of Chestertown are working together on an extension of South Water Street with a one-way connection to South Queen Street.

Mr. de Mooy stated that this property has had several site plans before the Planning Commission since 2007, beginning with plans for four (4) townhouses. He said that this arrangement for three (3) townhouses fits better in the available space.  He said that there was a storm water pipe that ran under one of the lots and the agreement with the Town is that the developer will move the pipe to the area under the proposed one-way lane and that the lane will be deeded to the Town.  He said that the Planning Commission has granted preliminary approval for the site plan.

Ms. Beall stated that the townhouses will have 6’ porches in the front and second-floor decks at the rear. The houses will each be 2½ stories with smooth Hardiplank siding, 2-over-1 Anderson 400 series wood windows, and dormers.

Ms. Jorgenson stated that she did not like 2-over-1 windows and would prefer 2-over-2 windows, noting that they were more prominent in the area and all facades of the proposed townhouses would be able to be seen from the public way. Ms. Jorgenson stated that she did not like the casement windows in the back of the house.  Ms. Beall stated that she included casements because she did not want her clients having to climb on a counter to open a kitchen window.  Mr. de Mooy stated that this was new construction and there was no call for specific window styles.  Ms. Jorgenson stated that she thought 2-over-2 was more in keeping with the streetscape.  Ms. Ritchie and Mr. Gallo agreed.

Ms. Beall showed the porch columns, railings, and samples of the proposed decking materials (a complete packet is included in the file).

Ms. McGuire asked how high foundation would be the drawings showed the building at 10’ from mean high tide. Ms. Beall stated that the foundations would only be elevated 2’ as the site was already at 8’ above mean high tide.

Ms. Jorgenson asked if any of the trees on the lot would be saved. Mr. de Mooy stated that the Tree Committee has already inspected the site and the trees would be removed as they were “junk” trees.

Ms. Jorgenson stated that she would like to see the sliders on the decks to have dividers in the glass so that all windows had the same appearance, as shown in the product literature submitted.

Ms. Beall stated that if the only changes to the plans were to use 2-over-2 windows and dividers on the casement window and sliders, she said that she would make those changes to the application.

Ms. Jorgenson moved to approve BP2016-78 from Ramunno/QA13 Architects for the construction of three (3) townhouses on the South end of Water Street with the modification to the application that all windows will be 2-over-2 and will include dividers in the casement windows and glass doors as shown in the product brochure included with the application, was seconded by Mr. Gallo and carried unanimously.

A representative for BP2016-52 did not attend the meeting. Ms. Ritchie asked if anything was wrong with the shed proposal which would keep it from being approved.  Ms. Jorgenson stated that in order for applications to be approved the applicant or a representative had to appear before the Commission. Ms. Ritchie moved to deny BP2016-52 from VIMI properties for a shed at 113 South College Avenue, with an invitation to reapply when they are available to appear at the HDC meeting, was seconded by Mr. Gallo and carried unanimously.

There being no further business, Ms. Ritchie moved to adjourn the meeting at 6:50 p.m., was seconded by Mr. Gallo and carried unanimously.

Submitted by:                                                 Approved by:

Jennifer Mulligan                                           Alexa Silver

Town Clerk                                                     Chair

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