June 13, 2008
CALL TO ORDER - 3:00 p.m. 


Colleen Kessler, Member
Paul Parisi, Member
Bart Schannep, Member

EXCUSED: John Hickey, Member

MINUTES - Approval of the Minutes of April 22, 2008

MOTION: A motion was made by Member Schannep and seconded by Member Kessler to approve the minutes of April 22, 2008.

MOTION carried, 3-0.


CASE NO:  OV10-08-04, Desco Southwest, represented by the Planning Center requests relief from the 250’ distance required from a convenience use to residentially zoned properties.  Subject (parcel #219-47-017A, 018A, 0050, 0060, 004A, 004C, 004B) located on the northwest corner of La Canada Drive and Tangerine Road, Oro Valley, AZ, 85737.

Chair Parisi swore in the witness intending to testify.

Bob Conant, Planning Center, representing Desco Southwest, stated that the property being considered (known as the Miller Ranch property) is located at the northwest corner of La Canada Drive and Tangerine Road and has TP and C-1 zoning.  He stated that the current property owners want to build a bank with a drive-through use on this corner.  He explained that the C-1 zoning provides for a 250 foot setback from a residential district to help protect residences from light, noise, etc.  Mr. Conant reviewed the zoning district line on the west and stated that they are asking for relief from the 250 foot setback by 25 feet.  He stated that the buildings will block light and there is a wash/riparian area between the residents and the commercial area.

Mr. Conant further reviewed the Zoning Map and an Aerial Context Map for the property and stated that there is confusion regarding the zoning lines and a determination needs to be made regarding the R1-36 zoning line on the east.  He stated that they are asking that the R1-36 zoning lines be along the property lot lines of the Vistoso Gateway subdivision.  He explained that this would then compare to Verde Ranch subdivision just south of the Miller Ranch property as the zoning district boundary line is "well shy" of the right-of-way of Tangerine Road.   Mr. Conant explained that if the lot lines were determined to be along the property lines then they would not need a variance on the east side, only on the west side.

At the request of Member Schannep, Mr. Conant clarified that they are asking that the residential district line in this case be moved back along the property line to follow the lot lines. He explained that traditionally the Town did not include the rights-of-way in the zoning. 

In response to a question from Member Kessler, Mr. Conant explained that the Town’s Zoning Code references the district boundary and it is the property boundary that is causing the confusion in the determination.  He also confirmed that they would need a 25 foot variance on the west side due to the zoning district boundary line.

Patty Hayes, Zoning Inspector, reviewed the staff report highlighting the following:
 ~ Applicant is requesting relief from the 250 foot distance required from a convenience use to residentially zoned properties. (Business with drive-through use is considered a convenience use).  A bank is an allowed use on this property.
 ~ Property owners within 300 feet of the property were notified of the hearing.  Property was posted and hearing was advertised in the Daily Territorial and on line.  Staff received no comment in support or opposition to this case.
 ~ Property was rezoned from R1-144 to TP and C-1 in February 2007.
 ~ The distance measured from a convenience use to a residential district is from the residential property boundary (lot line) not the house structure.  Zoning districts in the Town extend over into the street right-of-way thus causing the zoning of the property to extend beyond platted property lines.
 ~ Maps not clearly defined.  Possibly eliminate the 250 foot requirement on this particular pad only may be best way to approach.

Member Schannep questioned whether the Board was being asked to interpret the Zoning Code or to accept the property line verses the residential district line.

Chief Civil Deputy Attorney Joe Andrews stated that the Board could try to determine where the zoning district boundaries are or they can grant a variance.  Staff is recommending that the 250 foot setback not apply for this specific lot.  However, the Board can determine the lot and boundary lines.

In response to a question from Member Kessler, Mr. Andrews explained that there is no building allowed in the wash and it would also be re-vegetated by the applicant.

In response to a question from Chair Parisi, Ms. Hayes stated that it is customary to have a drive-through use with stand alone bank buildings.

Chair Parisi opened the Public Hearing.  He then swore in those witnesses intending to testify.

Scott Christie, Oro Valley resident, stated that he lives just west of this property.  He questioned whether the variance would apply to any other areas.  (Chair Parisi explained that this variance would apply only to the bank and would not affect any future buildings.)

Bill Adler, Oro Valley resident, stated that the intent of the ordinance is to protect residences.  He stated that the reason for the relief request has nothing to do with anything except for the design of this use.  He said that the land is not creating a hardship; it is just that the applicant was wanting to place more uses on the property than space allows.  He stated that the square footages should be reduced on the buildings and then a variance would not be needed.

Chair Parisi closed the public hearing.

In response to a question from Member Kessler, Mr. Conant explained that the owner/developer wants to place the bank on this corner.   He stated that there have been a number of iterations of this particular plan.  If the bank were moved to the west it would create a worse situation.  He also explained that the bank with a drive-through would have to go through the Conditional Use Permit process. 

MOTION: A motion was made by Member Schannep and seconded by Member Kessler to deny the variance for case OV10-08-04.

DISCUSSION:  Member Schannep stated that he tended to go the "cleaner" route but by making this change, it would go against the intent of the zoning.  He also stated that he felt that this case did not meet all five criteria and the problem was being created by the property owner.

Member Kessler concurred and also stated that she would be concerned about setting a precedent for other measurements and variances in the future.  She also stated that other uses could be applied to this pad that would fall into the boundaries of the property and the bank use with a drive-through is bigger than was meant for the pad. 

MOTION carried, 3-0.


CASE NO: OV10-08-05, Paul Hofmann, represented by 3D architectural Designs, requests a variance from the required 15’ side yard setback to 10’.  Subject (parcel #224-34-1370) located at 935 W. Landoran Lane, Oro Valley, AZ 85737

Chair Parisi swore in the witness intending to testify.

Frank Rendon, 3D Architectural Designs, representing the applicant, Paul Hofmann, stated that they are asking that the side yard setback be reduced to 10 feet to allow a better functioning garage and driveway.  He explained that the setback of the property when zoned by Pima County was 10 feet; however, when Oro Valley rezoned the area, the setback was changed to 15 feet. He reviewed pictures depicting the access to the current garage, the proposed garage and driveway and the large palo verde tree that hinders access.  He further explained that other properties surrounding the subject property have 10 yard setbacks.

In response to a question from Member Schannep regarding "tilting" the garage on the property, Mr. Rendon stated that even if the new garage were tilted, it would still encroach into the 15 foot setback.  

In response to questions from Chair Parisi and Member Kessler, Mr. Rendon stated that the palo verde tree is about 50 - 60 years old and provides shade for the house.  He explained that the tree is about 2 - 3 feet from the corner of the garage.  He stated that they have worked on the design for over a year to try to make the garage work.  Mr. Rendon explained that in order to make the roof line functional and to not move the tree and keep the garage accessible for two vehicles, they could only make the 10 foot setback work.

Zoning Inspector Patty Hayes reviewed the staff communication and highlighted the following:
 ~ Property owner is requesting a variance from the required 15 foot side yard setback to 10 feet to build a detached garage.
 ~ Property owners within 300 feet of the property were notified of the hearing.  Property was posted and hearing was advertised in the Daily Territorial and on line.  Staff received one inquiry but the caller had no opinion.  A member of the Homeowner’s Association also called but had no objection.
 ~ House was built in 1963 in Pima County’s CR1 zoning district which required a 10 foot side yard setback.
 ~ Oro Valley’s Zoning Code was adopted in 1981 with a 15 foot side yard setback required for R1-36 zoning.

Chair Parisi opened the public hearing.  He then swore the witnesses intending to testify.

Bill Adler, Oro Valley resident, commented that it is clear that the hardship has been created by the design of the original house.  He stated that it is not the conditions of the property that are creating the hardship; it is the house location, size, design, etc.  He stated that it is a tough decision but the previous zoning is not a justification for a variance.

Paul Hofmann, owner of subject property, stated that he had submitted a letter with pictures and information regarding his property with his application.  However, he had two additional statements from neighbors to the north and to the south expressing support of his request that he also wanted to present to the Board (items were presented to the Board for their consideration). 

Mr. Hofmann further explained that his house was built in 1963 along with many other houses in the neighborhood.  The houses were built on properties with 10 foot sideyard setbacks so most of the homes were placed on their property with those provisions.  He stated that his house was built with a carport that was later converted to a flat-roof garage and now he was trying to upgrade his property with a garage that will allow his family to park their cars and to also have additional storage.  He stated that the law (ARS 9-462.06) provides for changes when it is justified and that the same privileges afforded to the neighbors should be afforded to all.  He explained that they have tried to reconfigure the placement of the garage and they can not do it without a five-foot variance.  He stated that if they cut the corner differently for the placement of the garage, they can’t fit a second car in as the depth would not be great enough.  He also explained that if they turn the garage, they can get a greater depth without it sticking out into the backyard.  Mr. Hofmann further explained that the new structure will compliment the existing house and their goal was to improve the value of the property and put it to its highest function.

In response to a question from Member Schannep, Mr. Hofmann explained that they can’t currently park in the garage because they do have to store items in it.  He  further explained that even if there was nothing in the garage, it is very small with a ceiling height of about 6 1/2 feet high so it is much smaller than you would expect to see.  He stated that they have always only been able to put one car in the garage due to its small size.

Chair Parisi closed the public hearing.

MOTION: A motion was made by Member Kessler and seconded by Member Schannep to approve OV-10-08-05 a request to reduce the side-yard setback from 15 feet to 10 feet.

DISCUSSION:  Member Kessler stated that she went through the criteria and she felt that the large tree was a special circumstance on the property.  She stated that if the tree was not there, the owner might be able to re-position the garage.   She stated that due to the topography of the surroundings, that the circumstances were not created by the owner and in looking around the neighborhood, the house warrants a two car garage.  She stated that the request was not detrimental to anyone in the area so she felt that the criteria had been met.

Member Schannep stated that the Board has been very understanding in allowing homeowners to build or install amenities in order to enjoy and have the same property rights as the surrounding neighbors.  However, this property owner already has a garage although it is undersized.  He stated that the property owner bought the home and now he wants to build a bigger garage.  He said that he felt that instead of taking the existing structure and widening it and making it higher, that it was all about the views.  Member Schannep stated that the building was already there so he was opposed to granting the variance with the belief that the existing structure could be modified staying in the 15 foot setback and yet still keeping the tree.

Chair Parisi stated that the project looks terrific but it is not in the 15 foot setback. He stated that there were other ways to modify the design of the garage and stay in the required setback and still enjoy their property.

MOTION failed, 1-2 with Member Parisi and Member Schannep opposed.

MOTION: A motion was made by Member Schannep and seconded by Member Parisi to deny OV-10-08-05.

MOTION carried, 2-1 with Member Kessler opposed.


Planning and Zoning Update - No report.


MOTION: A motion was made by Member Kessler and seconded by Member Schannep to adjourn at 3:56 p.m.

MOTION carried, 3-0.