Plan Commission - Regular


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  5.b.       
Meeting Date: 07/07/2020  
Topic:    Woodland Marketplace Sign Exception
From: Matt Carran
Department: Community Development  

Subject:
Public Hearing on the request of BAUER SIGN AND LIGHTING to obtain a sign exception allowing an off-site sign located on lands directly adjacent to the WOODLANDS MARKETPLACE located at N72W13400 Lund Lane, on a parcel identified by Tax Key Number 51.945.004, in Planned Development District (PDD) No. 1.

Action Item:
Consideration, deliberation, and a possible decision on the request of BAUER SIGN AND LIGHTING to obtain a sign exception allowing an off-site sign located on lands directly adjacent to the WOODLANDS MARKETPLACE located at N72W13400 Lund Lane, on a parcel identified by Tax Key Number 51.945.004, in Planned Development District (PDD) No. 1.
Background Information:
An application was submitted for a new freestanding sign along Appleton Avenue adjacent to the Woodlands Marketplace commercial development. The proposed freestanding sign would have tenant panels for each business and be constructed of materials that will be complimentary to the associated building. Section 78-6(6)(a) of the Municipal Code states "any sign or other advertising media not directly related to the use of the premises on which it is located is prohibited". Because the land that the proposed sign is being placed is a separate parcel from Woodlands Marketplace, it is considered offsite signage and is therefore prohibited unless a sign exception is approved.
Application Specifics:
Section 78-11(c) states the Plan Commission may determine and vary the sign regulations if the commission believes there are “practical difficulties or unnecessary hardships” in the way of carrying out the strict letter of the regulations, and the request would still be in harmony with the general purpose and intent.
 
In order to grant a sign exception, Section 78-11(c)(5) requires the Plan Commission to make findings based upon the evidence presented to it that six conditions are present.  These conditions, and the applicants response to each are listed below:

1.  The particular physical surroundings, shape or topographical conditions of the specific property involved would result in a particular hardship upon the owner as distinguished from a mere inconvenience, if the strict letter of the regulations were to be carried out.
This particular plot of land doesn’t have much use as it currently stands. The tenants of Woodlands Center are asking for a sign so that the tenant names can be seen better on Appleton Ave. There is no other spot on the property that is owned by management where a monument sign would be placed. A sign is important for these business and future tenants of the Woodlands Center.
 
2.  The conditions upon which the application for an exception is based would not be applicable generally to other property within the same zoning classification.
There is no other spot as mentioned where a sign can be installed.
 
3.  The purpose of the exception is not based exclusively upon a desire for economic or other material gain by the applicant or owner.
It has nothing to do with ownership but the tenants desire to have more exposure for their business’s on Appleton Ave.
 
4. The alleged difficulty or hardship is caused by this article and has not been created by any person presently having an interest in the property.
Yes that is true.

5.  The granting of the exception will not be detrimental to the public welfare or injurious to other property or improvements in the neighborhood in which the property is located.
Yes, this is true.
 
6.  The proposed exception will not impair an adequate supply of light and air to adjacent property, or substantially increase the congestion in the public streets, or increase the danger of fire, or endanger the public safety, or substantially diminish or impair property values within the neighborhood.
Yes this sign will not cause any issues or endanger anything or anyone in the area.
Additional Information:
The request was reviewed by the Engineering and Development, Police, Fire, and Utilities Departments.

The Development Department noted the following:
  • A survey with the location of the sign drawn on it and its setbacks from property lines is required for review.
  • A landscape plan for plantings at the base of the sign are required for review.
  • The proposed freestanding sign is located in an existing vision triangle easement, and within the highway setback line, per Certified Survey Map No. 10081. The sign will either have to be relocated outside of these areas, or per Sec. 236.293 of the Wisconsin Statutes, the restrictions "released or waived in writing" by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.  A copy of the restrictions provided in the subject Certified Survey Map are attached as well as an exhibit transferring the restrictions to an aerial photograph.
Requested Action by Commission/Committee/Board:
As long as the issues brought up at the public hearing can be addressed, and the Plan Commission finds the applicant has properly addressed each of the 6 noted conditions, Staff recommends the Plan Commission grant the requested sign exception allowing an off-site sign on a parcel identified by Tax Key Number 51.945.004 subject to:
  1. The sign being shifted outside of the vision triangle easement, or the Wisconsin Department of Transportation waiving the vision triangle and highway setback restrictions for the subject sign.
  2. Submitting a landscape plan showing plantings at the base of the sign, and complying with the submitted landscape plan.
  3. Submitting a plat of survey showing the subject sign set back a minimum of 5 feet from the Appleton Avenue right of way.

Attachments
Maps
Site Plan
Sign Rendering
CSM Restrictions
Restrictions on Aerial


    

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