Historic District Agenda 05-02-2017

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                                                CITY OF MUSKEGON
                                           HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION
                                                REGULAR MEETING

DATE OF MEETING:                        Tuesday, May 2, 2017
TIME OF MEETING:                        4:00 p.m.
PLACE OF MEETING:                       City Commission Chambers, City Hall


I.     Call to Order

III.   Approval of Minutes of the regular meeting of April 4, 2017

IV.    Old Business

V.     New Business

       Case 2017-06 – 1347 Peck St – Siding
       Case 2017-07 – 240 Monroe Ave – Demolition
       Case 2017-08 – Hackley Park
       Case 2017-09 – 25 Merrill – Fence
       Case 2017-10 – 345 Houston – Fence
       Case 2017-11 – 430 W Clay Ave - Fence

VI.    Other Business

VII.   Adjourn

          “We admire that which is old not because it is old, but because it is beautiful.” Winston Churchill


       The City of Muskegon will provide necessary reasonable auxiliary aids and services, such as signers for the hearing impaired and audio
       tapes of printed materials being considered at the meeting, to individuals with disabilities who want to attend the meeting, upon twenty-
       four hour notice to the City of Muskegon. Individuals with disabilities requiring auxiliary aids or services should contact the City of
       Muskegon by writing or calling the following:

                                                         Ann Marie Meisch, City Clerk
                                                               933 Terrace Street
                                                             Muskegon, MI 49440
                                                                (231) 724-6705
                                       TTY/TDD: Dial 7-1-1 and request that representative dial 231-724-6705

                                      CITY OF MUSKEGON
                                HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION

                                               April 4, 2017

Chairperson J. Hilt called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m. and roll was taken.

MEMBERS PRESENT:              J. Hilt, S. Kroes, D. Warren, S. Radtke, L. Wood, K. Panozzo

MEMBERS ABSENT:               A. Riegler, excused

STAFF PRESENT:                M. Franzak, D. Renkenberger

OTHERS PRESENT:               A. Coffee, 1201 Ransom; D. Gregersen, 241 W Muskegon Ave.


A motion to approve the regular meeting minutes of March 7, 2017 was made by D. Warren, supported by
K. Panozzo and unanimously approved.


Case 2017-04 – 1201 Ransom Street. Applicant: Andre’ Coffee. District: McLaughlin. Current Func-
tion: Residential. M. Franzak presented the staff report. The applicant is seeking approval to build a de-
tached garage. This property is located on a corner lot and the garage would be built on the Delaware
Avenue side of the property. The garage would measure 24’ x 36’ with a pitched roof and a maximum
height of 14.’ There would be two garage doors, once facing Delaware St and one facing the house. The
side facing the house would also have an entry door. They are proposing vinyl siding that would match
the existing vinyl siding on the house as well as the same type of shingles as the house. Also note that
staff has discovered that the white vinyl fence on the property was installed last year without a permit or
HDC approval. The applicant will propose a new fence to the board since this one is too tall to be in a
front yard.

M. Franzak stated that, although there are no windows on the garage, he had looked at other garages in the
area and this was not unusual. D. Warren asked Mr. Coffee if he was going to replace the fence in front
with another kind. A. Coffee stated that he was not; he would just move the fence back to the corner of
the house.

A motion that the HDC approve the request to build a new 24- by 36-foot garage as proposed, and to ap-
prove the white vinyl fence as long as it is moved back approximately 20 feet to where the fence ordi-
nance allows, with the conditions that all zoning requirements are met and the necessary permits are ob-
tained, was made by L. Wood, supported by S. Kroes and unanimously approved.


390 W Muskegon Ave – Last year, staff inadvertently approved a fence in an historic district without tak-
ing it to the board for approval. A neighbor a few blocks away is not happy with the fence and is asking
that something be done about it. Unfortunately, the board does not have the authority to order removal of
it at this point, since the permit has been issued; however, staff has contacted the property owner and in-
formed them of the issue. The owner is adamant that the fence is a great addition as it is, and does not
want a “cheap chain link fence.” They may be willing to modify the fence, but only to a certain extent.
The City has offered to provide money and resources to assist in modifications. The owners were willing
to let the HDC make a recommendation for moving forward. They have been a great addition to the
neighborhood and have done a great job of cleaning up the yard, which previously had many dead and
overgrown trees/shrubs. They will also be finishing the fence this spring and will be landscaping around
it. They plan to paint the home this summer and never considered requesting vinyl or making any other
changes that would detract from the home’s historical integrity.

M. Franzak stated that the homeowners needed a fence to keep a large dog in the yard. They planned to
landscape around the fence also. S. Radtke suggested allowing a one-time exception to allow this fence,
since no alterations were made to the house, and the black chain link part of the fence blended in to the
landscape. D. Gregersen lived in the area and did not like the fence, as it was not historically appropriate.
He requested that the HDC make an official recommendation to the property owner on how to modify the
fence design to make it more appropriate. M. Franzak stated that making a recommendation and offering
to pay for modifications is about all the City can do at this point. D. Warren asked if the homeowner had
been invited to attend the meeting to discuss the fence. M. Franzak stated that she had been invited, but
could not attend due to work. Board members discussed various styles of fence that would be acceptable.
D. Gregersen suggested an aluminum picket fence like the one at Nelson Place. L. Wood pointed out that
the landscaping could cover much of the fence. Other modification possibilities included adding finials to
the top of the posts and painting or staining the wooden posts. M. Franzak stated that he had a good idea
of what the board wanted and would contact the homeowner to relay the information.


Hackley Park dance floor – After reviewing the Hackley Park Master Plan and discussing the issue with
the City’s Parks Supervisor, the applicant was informed that staff would not support the request to add a
permanent concrete dance floor to the park. Hackley Park is a Civil War memorial, and the main focus of
the park is the central monument and walkways leading to it. The addition of a concrete pad would dis-
tract from the symmetrical walkways and monuments. Although staff does not support the request for a
permanent dance floor, they have offered to level off the grass near the stage to allow for better usage of a
temporary dance floor. The applicant stated that he may still present his proposal to the HDC in May.

HDC grant program – M. Franzak and board members again discussed a possible HDC grant program
through the City. Over the past month, staff had become more receptive to assisting with home painting,
but there needed to be safeguards in place to ensure that quality work was performed so paint wouldn’t be
chipping off in a couple of years. M. Franzak asked that board members e-mail their ideas to him before
the next HDC meeting so a formal proposal could be presented to the City Manager.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 5:05 p.m.

                                      Case 2017-06 – 1347 Peck St
                                      Applicant: Helen Sherman
                                         District: McLaughlin
                                     Current Function: Residential


The applicant is seeking approval to replace the current wood siding with vinyl siding. They are propos-
ing to remove the old siding, wrap the house for insulation and protection against moisture, put up trim
and wrap in aluminum and then reside with vinyl.

The applicant was asked to get a quote for repainting verses residing.


                                       CITY OF MUSKEGON
                                  HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION

                                (Adopted December 6,1994 - Effective January 1, 1995)

The Muskegon Historic District Commission does not endorse the residing of structures within the Histor-
ic districts. It is the policy of this Commission that the original fabric of the building should be repaired
or replaced where necessary with the original building material. Therefore, residing and trim cladding in
most cases shall not be approved.

In instances where the repair or replacement with like materials is impractical or where it can be demon-
strated that the original materials will no longer hold paint or that the original materials are so badly dete-
riorated that they can no longer be reasonably repaired, the residing standards below shall strictly be ad-
hered to.

For the purpose of this statement, the terms "residing materials" and "trim cladding" shall be understood
to encompass the use of any residing materials such as aluminum, vinyl, steel, hardboard, wood, masonry,
or molded urethane which is designed to replace or cover all, or any part, of an exterior wall, trim work or
other building element or a structure within a designated historic district.

The Commission shall review all applications for Certificates of Appropriateness proposing the installa-
tion of residing materials or trim cladding as individual cases. Each application shall be decided on its
own merit. No person should interpret any Commission approval for residing or trim cladding as being
precedent setting. Unrestricted use of residing materials or trim cladding will not be allowed.

In any case where residing materials or trim cladding are proposed for use by a property owner or siding
contractor, the property owner shall be required to submit a signed letter stating in detail the intent and
scope of the proposed residing or trim cladding installation. Such a letter is to also include the identifica-
tion of any deterioration or problems occurring relative to the existing siding or exterior building fabric.
If known, the cause and extent of this deterioration must be clearly stated.

The following conditions of installation shall be met by all proposals for residing or trim cladding:

       1.      All existing deterioration shall be made structurally sound and its causes, insofar as possi-
               ble, shall be corrected prior to the installation of residing materials or trim cladding.
       2.      Any installation of residing materials shall simulate the appearance of the original building
               material that it is intended to cover. This simulation shall take into account the size, shape
               or profile, texture, and linear direction of the original building material.

               (a)     The residing material shall be similar in appearance and dimension to the original
               siding. The exposure to the weather of the new siding shall range within one inch of the
               nominal dimension of the original siding. The Historic District Commission shall have the
               authority to waive this requirement in the event that they believe a different design or di-
               mension siding would be more appropriate to the architectural character of the Historic

               (b)     A proposed color shall be appropriate as determined by the Commission.

               (c)    Generally, wood grain textures are not approved by the Commission. However, the
               appropriateness of a specific siding texture shall be determined on an individual case basis.

       3.      Any installation of trim cladding shall adhere to the following guidelines for the treatment
               for architectural trim elements.

               (a)     Existing cornice or building trim elements shall not be covered or replaced without
               Commission approval. Commission approval will depend upon how closely the trim clad-
               ding or new trim elements duplicate the appearance of the existing building trim elements.

               (b)     The wall siding material shall not extend over the existing trim members such as
               window and door trim, sills, facias, soffits, frieze members and boards, brackets, aprons,
               corner boards, trim boards, skirt boards, or any other characteristic moldings or architec-
               tural features (see attached illustration).

               (c)    If the above mentioned trim members are to be clad, they shall be covered with cus-
               tom formed cladding which shall closely approximate the shapes and contours of the exist-
               ing moldings or trim. Distinctive or unusual trim or architectural elements shall not be
               clad without prior consideration and Commission approval.

               (d)      No building trim elements or architectural features are to be removed or altered to
               facilitate the installation of the new siding or trim cladding without approval of the Histor-
               ic District Commission.

               (e)     In most cases the soffit cladding material shall run parallel and not perpendicular to
               the plane of the wall.


I move that the HDC (approve/deny) the request to replace with wood siding with vinyl siding as pro-
posed as long as all zoning requirements are met and the necessary permits are obtained.

                                     Case 2017-07 – 240 Monroe Ave
                                      Applicant: City of Muskegon
                                            District: Houston
                                     Current Function: Residential


The applicant is seeking approval to demo the house after it was damaged in a fire on November 9, 2016.
The State Historic Preservation Office of Michigan (SHPO) has determined that the home is not listed on
the National Register of Historic Places (SHPO response enclosed). Please also see the enclosed Fire In-
spection Report and pictures.


            Sec. 11-31.        Approval of demolition or moving of structures of historic or architec-
            tural worth.

            (a) The demolition or moving of structures of historic or architectural worth shall be discour-
            aged. The commission shall not issue a certificate of approval for demolition of such a struc-
            ture, except when the structure is deemed a hazard to public health or safety by a responsible
            public agency. The commission may, at its own discretion, issue a certificate of approval for
            the demolition or moving of such structure, but shall be guided by the following conditions in
            exercising its judgment in granting such a certificate:

            (1) The director of building inspection deems such structure to be a hazard to public safety or
            health and repairs are impossible.

            (2) Such structure is a deterrent to a major improvement program which will be of substantial
            benefit to the community.

            (3) Retention of such structure would cause undue financial hardship to the owner, which
            would be defined as a situation where more funds than is reasonable would be required to re-
            tain the structure.
            (4) The retention of such structure would not be in the interest of the community as a whole.

            (b) In cases where approval for demolition is granted, for reasons other than public health or
            safety, such certificate shall not become effective until six (6) months after the date of such is-
            suance, in order to provide a period of time within which it may be possible to relieve a hard-
            ship or to cause the property to be transferred to another owner who will retain the structure.
            (Ord. No. 737, § 9, 9-25-73)


I move that the HDC (approve/deny) the request to demo the structure as proposed as long as it meets all
zoning requirements and the necessary permits are obtained.

                                    Case 2017-08 – Hackley Park
                                 Applicant: Muskegon Polish Festival
                                     District: National Register
                                   Current Function: Residential

Plans will be presented at the meeting. The applicant has agreed to modify the grass area to make it more
flat and useable for a temporary dance floor, rather than create a permanent dance floor. However, they
would still like a vote.

                                      Case 2017-09 – 25 Merrill
                                       Applicant: Holly Alway
                                        District: McLaughlin
                                     Current Function: Residential

The applicant is seeking approval to replace the current chain link fence with a 5-foot wood privacy fence.
Her back yard borders a parking lot and she would like the fence to screen her yard. The fence will be
located along the rear property line and the side of the back yard facing Peck St. Her property is outlined
in green on the aerial photo below; the proposed fence location is shown in yellow on the sketch.


I move that the HDC (approve/deny) the request to erect a 5-foot wood panel fence as proposed as long as
it meets all zoning requirements and the necessary permits are obtained.

                                  Case 2017-10 – 345 Houston Ave.
                                      Applicant: Andre Coffee
                                   Current Function: Residential

This is one of the new Midtown Square homes. The applicant is seeking approval to install a 6-foot white
vinyl privacy fence with gate around his back yard. They will also be installing a ground-level wooden
deck in the back yard and a paver patio with a fire pit. See sketch below for details.

Front and back view of 345 Houston Ave.


I move that the HDC (approve/deny) the request to erect a 6-foot white vinyl privacy fence, wooden deck
platform, and paver patio with fire pit as proposed, as long as it meets all zoning requirements and the
necessary permits are obtained.

                              Case 2017-11 – 444 & 448 W. Clay Avenue
                                Applicant: Lakeshore Museum Center
                                       District: Clay - Western
                                   Current Function: Institutional

The applicant is seeking to erect a wooden split-rail fence around the two vacant properties where homes
were recently razed. The fence will keep cars from parking in these areas so they can be seeded. The rear
of the lots near the alley will remain a parking area. See sketch below for details.

Photo showing the style of fence to be used:


I move that the HDC (approve/deny) the request to erect a wooden split rail fence as proposed as long as
it meets all zoning requirements and the necessary permits are obtained.

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