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13 homes proposed off of Neptune Drive
13 homes proposed off of Neptune Drive
By SUE REID
The Solon planning commission has forwarded the proposed development of a 13-lot, single-family home subdivision at the southwest corner of Miles Road and Neptune Drive to City Council's safety and public properties and public works committees for further review.
Developer Randy Kertesz went before the commission last week with a formal plan for the subdivision and associated zoning variances. He had approached the commission late last year with a preliminary layout for discussion purposes.
The property is zoned R-1-D, one-acre, single-family residential. The proposed subdivision site currently consists of six parcels totaling approximately 22 acres. It would be accessed via a cul-de-sac off of Neptune Drive, opposite Woodall Road. One of the proposed lots would be accessed directly from Neptune Drive.
"It's a formal but preliminary plan," Solon Planning Director Robert S. Frankland told the commission.
According to the city's code, the planning commission has up to 180 days to review proposed subdivision plans before making a final recommendation to City Council.
Prior to that time, the applicant will need to submit more detailed information, as required under the provisions of the subdivision code, Mr. Frankland said. It is to include an impact analysis, wetlands delineation and any other relevant information required by the city's engineering department.
"A lot of storm-water runoff information is needed to be submitted," Mr. Frankland said. "There is a reason the code allows subdivisions 180 days to review a plan, because it can be a time-intensive process, and there is information that needs submitted."
"I don't expect to skate through," Mr. Kertesz said. "We want to develop it in harmony with the city."
In caucus prior to the regular meeting, Mayor Susan A. Drucker, a member of the commission, said she hesitates to make comments on the proposal, because she does not yet have a wetland analysis and impact study showing what can and can't be built on the property.
Mr. Kertesz said his engineers have completed a full wetland investigation, which he intends to forward to the administration and commission.
Engineer Daniel Neff, of Neff and Associates, said it would be premature to submit the proposal to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers until receiving preliminary approval from the city. He said the subdivision cannot be done without some type of impact.
Mr. Neff said the development would impact 0.26 acre of wetlands, and, under national permit standards, 0.5 acre of impact is permitted. In addition, the project will result in the relocation of 260 feet of stream, and, under national permitting standards, 300 feet is allowed, he said. The existing structure of Lake Neptune will be modified as well, he said.
It will be cleaned to make sure it's working properly, Mr. Kertesz said.
He said homes in the subdivision would range from 2,500 square feet to more than 3,500 square feet, "which is more of the norm today."
When making the preliminary proposal to the commission, Mr. Kertesz said he did not want to ask for variances as far as lot size and setbacks, "if we can limit them." However, last week, four 25-foot yard-setback variances and three not-parallel-to-street variances were put before the commission.
Commission member William M. Mazur said he would not support the setback variances. "When you asked for input to begin with, you said, 'no variances,'" he told Mr. Kertesz. "Now you come back with variances."
Mr. Kertesz said, "We can do it without variances," because the lots are very deep.
"I can support the not-parallel-to-the-street variances for aesthetics, which we've historically done in the past," Mr. Mazur said.
"We need to study this plan further," commission member Roger C. Newberry said, "and send it off to committees and departments."
"It's not a short journey," Mr. Neff said of the approvals involved. "It takes time. We will go through the details necessary to satisfy the code and meet the concerns of neighbors."
Mr. Kertesz also is asking to extend the city's sanitary sewer system. If he cannot do that, he could use a pump station to reach the sewer on Miles Road, which is owned and operated by the Cuyahoga County Regional Sewer Division. Another option would be to pump to a Solon manhole. "There will be sanitary sewers either way," he said.
Mr. Kertesz said he is in discussions with neighboring property owners about acquiring an easement.
"Because the property rolls, if we can't get a sanitary easement to get sewers out back, we will have to use a small pump station to handle the homes, because the topography doesn't permit anything else," he said.
There are two small ponds located at the intersection of Miles and Lake Neptune, Mr. Kertesz said, and they discharge and diagonally across the property in an existing water course running to the retention areas along Route 422, he said.
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