Historic District Minutes 06-02-2020

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                                  CITY OF MUSKEGON
                            HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION
                                       MINUTES

                                           June 2, 2020

S. Radtke called the meeting to order at 4:02 p.m. and roll was taken.

MEMBERS PRESENT:              A. Riegler, S. Radtke, K. George, K. Panozzo

MEMBERS ABSENT:               L. Wood, T. Painter, T. Emory excused

STAFF PRESENT:                J. Pesch, R. Cummins

OTHERS PRESENT:               J. Hoff, 1122 Terrace; J. Weaver and J. Miller, 579 W. Clay; L.
                              King, 1305 Jefferson

ELECTION OF OFFICERS

This was postponed until the next meeting due to the absence of three board members.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES
A motion to approve the regular meeting minutes of May 5, 2020 was made by K. George,
supported by A. Riegler and unanimously approved.

NEW BUSINESS

Case 2020-08 – 1122 Terrace Street (Siding and Windows). Applicant: Josh and Jen Hoff. District:
McLaughlin. Current Function: Residential. J. Pesch presented the staff report. The applicant is
seeking approval to replace the cedar shake covering the exterior of the third floor with a polymer
shingle of a similar appearance and to replace six (6) windows – three on the north side and three
on the south side of the house – on the third floor with wood windows of a similar size and
appearance. J. Hoff was in attendance to represent the case.

J. Hoff explained that the windows he was requesting to install would be very similar to the
windows on the front of the house. He described the type of siding proposed for the house and
noted that it comes in varying widths which allows it to better follow the contours of the wall much
like the original cedar shake, allowing for preservation of the flares and bends going into the
windows. The proposed siding has a blend of three shades to create a more natural appearance
when installed.

S. Radtke stated that the board would discuss the request in two parts – the shingles, and the
windows – starting with the shingles. A. Riegler stated that it would help to have a sample of the
siding material but that, considering the circumstances, she thought the material looked good. K.
George stated that she had been impressed with past work that has been done on the house and did
not have an issue with the choice of replacement materials. K. Panozzo asked if the proposed
shingles were the same material as the new roof on the house that was previously approved. J. Hoff
stated that the roof is made up of aluminum panels and paint made specifically for weather. He
stated that the materials chosen were selected to retain the details and represent the original
materials of the house.

The board moved on to discuss the replacement windows. J. Pesch stated that, based on a review
of the HDC’s documents, the windows on the upper floors that are covered in the photos included
in the Staff Report were plain, double hung windows. J. Hoff stated that those not already replaced
with plexiglass were single-pane windows, and that he was looking to replace them to save on
energy costs. The replacement windows used elsewhere on the house are solid oak with aluminum
cladding on the exterior. A. Riegler stated that as long as the existing windows were being replaced
with like materials and within a very close dimension to the original they could be approved.

A motion that the HDC approve the request to replace the cedar shake covering the exterior of
the third floor with a polymer shingle of a similar appearance and to replace six (6) windows
(three on the north side and three on the south side) on the third floor of the house with wood
windows of a similar size and appearance as long as the work meets all zoning requirements and
the necessary permits are obtained was made by A Riegler and supported by K. George. The
motion was unanimously approved.

Case 2020-09 – 579 W. Clay Avenue (Shed). Applicant: Jennifer Weaver/J&J Corner Properties,
LLC. District: Clay-Western. Current Function: Vacant Lot. J. Pesch presented the staff report.
The applicant is seeking approval to construct a 10’ x 20’, wood frame shed. Drawings of the shed
were provided. J. Pesch stated that Staff recently approved a 6’-tall, wood privacy fence at this
property that would screen he proposed shed from the street. J. Weaver and J. Miller were in
attendance to represent the case.

A. Riegler asked about any potential zoning issues with building a shed on a vacant lot. J. Pesch
stated that there was an option to combine the lots. A. Riegler stated that the shed alone would be
out of scale with the surrounding buildings, but that it would work in the neighborhood as an
accessory structure. K. George stated that she was less concerned about the design and size of the
shed because it was not prefabricated and because of the varying scale of the structures in the
immediate area and larger district. K. Panozzo stated that the shed would add to the neighborhood,
and A. Riegler concurred, stating that the shed would stand out by not mimicking a historic
structure. S. Radtke noted that the shed would not be a permanent structure and could be replaced
with a larger structure in the future.

A motion that the HDC approve the request to construct a 10’ x 20’, wood frame shed as presented
in the June 2nd, 2020 HDC Staff Report as long as the work meets all zoning requirements and the
necessary permits are obtained was made by K. Panozzo and supported by K. George. The motion
was unanimously approved.
Case 2020-10 – 1305 Jefferson Street (Siding). Applicant: Lateesha King. District: Campus.
Current Function: Residential. J. Pesch presented the staff report. The applicant is seeking approval
to install vinyl siding on the exterior of the house. L. King was in attendance to represent the case.
L. King explained that the wood siding currently installed on the house was chipping and was
expensive to upkeep. She stated that the vinyl siding would be the same color as the existing
painted wood siding.

A. Riegler asked if the existing accent siding in the gable would be retained. L. King stated that
the all the brick would remain and that only the siding that is currently painted grey would be
covered with new vinyl siding. K. Panozzo asked what material would be installed near the peaks
of the roof. L. King stated that it would remain the same, as the siding is in good condition in that
area. A. Riegler stated that she was hesitant to approve vinyl siding on a house with as much detail
as this one because it would be difficult to keep the existing trim without impacting the appearance
of layering vinyl siding over the existing siding. She mentioned the possibility of looking into
other siding options. K. Panozzo stated that she understood the maintenance problems with wood
siding, but agreed that the appearance of the siding and trim would be negatively affected with the
proposed change. A. Riegler expressed concern about the long-term condition of the wood siding
if it were to be covered with vinyl siding and encouraged looking into alternative materials or
getting an estimate for painting the existing wood siding. L. King stated that previous owners never
installed gutters on the house, which has led to issues with dry rotting; she noted that painting
would likely cost less than residing, but would require repainting every few years. A. Riegler stated
that the board occasionally approves vinyl siding on houses without as much detail or corners, but
that there is also an unfortunate misconception that vinyl siding is maintenance-free.

S. Radtke noted that the HDC had to follow their local standards. The board reviewed the relevant
sections of the local standards for vinyl siding that were included in the Staff Report.

A motion to deny the request to install vinyl siding on the exterior of the house was made by K.
Panozzo and supported by S. Radtke. The motion was unanimously approved.

OLD BUSINESS

None

OTHER BUSINESS

J. Pesch provided ordinance sections from other Michigan cities’ historic district commissions’
local standards dealing with installation of mechanical equipment as well as a proposed
amendment to the City of Muskegon HDC local standards from around 2003 that dealt with the
issue. Staff will draft an addition to the HDC local standards that addresses outdoor mechanical
equipment for review by the board at the next meeting.

Time was allotted for public comment with contact information provided. There were no
comments from the public.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:49 p.m.

JP

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