P&Z nears decision on Jelliff Mill
The Planning and Zoning Commission Monday night held a special meeting on the proposed 16-unit townhouse complex at Jelliff Mill. Nine meetings have been held in the past few months discussing the various issues with the proposal. The commission hopes to have a decision ready by next week.
"The submitted evidence, to say the least, is overwhelming by sheer size and weight. I weighed the amount of material tonight in my possession, and its 28 pounds altogether," P&Z Chairman Lazlo Papp said. "I have to say that analyzing the reading material, many of them of are contradictory to one another or have confusing elements. Nevertheless, this commission will have the requirement to sort out of the material and make intelligent and lawful decisions."
While the decision and resolution on the application has yet to be made, it was clear the commission was not comfortable with the flood issues surrounding a new complex at Jelliff Mill.
"I guess we agree then that the floodplain management permit is an essential issue for public health and safety and until that is provided and satisfactory that it [doesn't affect] health and safety, we cannot approve the plan," Papp said.
At a previous meeting in April, Todd Ritchie, a professional engineer with the firm GHD, spoke about the nature of the floodplain.
Ritchie concluded the most glaring concern is the special flood hazard area as defined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
According to Ritchie, if any part of the structure is touching the special flood hazard area, as defined by the elevations of the area, then the applicant would need to get a flood regulation permit from FEMA.
"The edge of the building is still on the floodplain with the elevation patterns provided by FEMA," Ritchie said. "Flood permit regulations should be applied to the dam (portion) of the application, if anything."
Ritchie said if it is determined that the dam structure, which is a separate application from the condominiums, is a structure continuous with the rest of the proposal, then the flood permit would be needed for the whole building.
Experts representing the opposition agreed with Ritchie's testimony. Curtis Jones, an engineer with the opposition, said by all corresponding elevations, the 100-year floodplain goes up against the corner of the structure.
"It is our opinion, that the building is unquestionably in the floodplain and it is subject to your floodplain management regulations in town," Jones said.
The commission's decision will be drafted and announced next Monday at 6 p.m.
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