HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION
JANUARY 7, 2015
Chairman Michael Lane called the regular meeting to order at 4:00 p.m. In attendance were Commission members John Ames, Alexa Cawley, Lucy Maddox, Nancy Maguire and Ed Minch, Kees de Mooy, Zoning Administrator, Jennifer Mulligan, Town Clerk and guests.
Mr. Lane 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.
Mr. Lane stated that the first thing to do in the New Year was to nominate and elect a Chairman for 2015. Ms. Maguire moved to nominate and elect Michael Lane as Chairman for 2015, was seconded by Ms. Cawley and carried unanimously.
Mr. Lane asked if there were any additions or corrections to the minutes of the meeting of December 3, 2014. Mr. Ames moved to approve the minutes as submitted, was seconded by Ms. Maddox and carried unanimously.
The first item on the agenda was BP2014-138 from Wendy Cronin at 504 Cannon Street. There was nobody present for the application.
The next item was BP2015-01 from Royal Farms at 301 Maple Avenue for an antenna. Mr. Lane recused himself from the application as he was employed by Royal Farms.
Mr. Ames moved to appoint Ms. McGuire as Chair for the application, was seconded by Ms. Cawley and carried unanimously.
Mr. George Rathlev of SCE Engineering, consultant to Verizon Wireless, was present for the application for Royal Farms.
Mr. de Mooy stated that this Verizon small-cell antenna would help Verizon customers with cellphone reception. He said that a false chimney would be built on the peak of the building as shown on the drawings. Materials were a faux brick, similar to what was approved for 7-Eleven. Mr. de Mooy stated that this was a non-contributing structure that has been completely modified over the years.
Mr. Rathlev stated that he provided a photograph of a similar installation in a historic district in Gaithersburg, Maryland. He said that the antenna would be unobtrusive and would match the existing chimney on the building. Mr. Rathlev stated that this service would enhance existing service to wireless devices in Chestertown as signal capacity continues to grow.
Ms. Minch asked the range of the antenna. Mr. Rathlev stated that it was about 1500 feet or a quarter mile unobstructed. He said that because the Royal Farms was located on Rt. 213 it was a strategic location for motorists.
Ms. Maguire expressed concern over the use of the faux brick as it did not age as actual brick would, noting that if this was a contributing structure the material may be an issue.
Ms. Maddox moved to approve BP2015-01 for an antenna with a faux chimney at Royal Farms, as the building was not a contributing structure and subject to a lower threshold of review and compliance, was seconded by Mr. Ames and carried unanimously.
Mr. Lane returned to his chair. He asked for a motion to table BP2014-138 as the applicant, Ms. Wendy Cronin, had not shown. Mr. Minch moved to table BP2013-138, was seconded by Ms. Maguire and carried unanimously.
Ms. Maguire asked if there was any movement on the issue of signage. Mr. Lane stated that a meeting was scheduled with the DCA and the Chairs of both the Historic District Commission and Planning Commission. The DCA requested additional time to perform an internal study on what the membership viewed as signage issues and the Town has not heard back from them.
Mr. Ames stated that he would miss the February 2015 meeting.
There being no further business, Mr. Ames moved to adjourn the meeting at 4:25 p.m., was seconded by Ms. Maddox and carried unanimously.