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MINUTES – PLANNING COMMISSION - REGULAR MEETING - AUGUST 19, 2014

The Regular Meeting of the Morris Planning Commission was called to order at 5:15 p.m. this 19th day of August, 2014, by Chairperson Kuchenreuther in the Council Chambers of the Morris Senior Citizens/Community Center.

CALL OF THE ROLL:  Roll Call was taken with the following members present:  Commissioners Granger, Livingston, Gades and Chairperson Kuchenreuther.  Commissioners Hoffman, Rudney and Kurpiers were absent.  Also present were ex-officio Miller and City Manager/Zoning Administrator Hill.

READING AND APPROVAL OF 8/5/14 SPECIAL MEETING MINUTES:  Commissioner Granger moved, seconded by Livingston, to approve the minutes of the 8/5/14 Special Meeting as presented.  With all present voting in favor, motion carried.

PUBLIC HEARINGS:  None.

OTHER BUSINESSFinal Plat of Riley’s Commercial Development First Addition:  Zoning Administrator Hill explained the Planning Commission approved the Preliminary Plat of Riley’s Commercial Development First Addition at a special meeting August 5, 2014.  The next day notification was received from MNDOT that they did not need the extra 25’ of right of way that was platted along MN Highway 28 for a center turn lane on Highway 28; however, they did need an additional 25’ of right of way along MN Highway 9.  The City Council approved the updated preliminary plat with instructions to make those changes for the final plat.  Hill noted there is another change on the final plat, that being that there is a small chunk of land in the northwest corner of this plat that is owned by Riley’s but was not platted, so it was included on the final plat. 

Chairperson Kuchenreuther asked if there are three access points to this development.  Hill noted that is correct. 

Hill indicated when the last preliminary plat was approved by the Planning Commission, it was noted the holding pond was a sufficient size.  That is not correct, and the pond is the correct size on this plat.  He also noted MNDOT will not be draining any of their runoff into the holding pond. 

Ex-officio Miller asked if the North side of Highway 28 will still be torn up for utilities.  Hill indicated water and sewer will be constructed in that ditch.

Commissioner Granger asked if the frontage road would be wider along Highway 28 since MNDOT doesn’t need the additional 25’.  Hill indicated it would not be wider.

Hill indicated City Engineering Surveyor/Inspector Fier will be the City’s inspector on this project.

Commissioner Granger moved, seconded by Gades, to make a recommendation to the City Council to approve this final plat.  With all present voting in favor, motion carried.

Set Public Hearing for Consideration of Street Vacation in Riley’s Commercial Development Subdivision:  Hill indicated there is already a plat filed for the Riley’s Commercial Development, and the roads and public right of way on that plat need to be vacated.  Hill suggested the Planning Commission set a public hearing on the vacation on September 2nd, which is two weeks before the next regularly-scheduled meeting.  This would allow a shorter time in which to file the new final plat.  After discussion, Commissioner Gades moved, seconded by Livingston, to set a public hearing for the street vacation in Riley’s Commercial Development Subdivision at the Planning Commission’s regular meeting Tuesday, September 16.  With all present voting in favor, motion carried.

K-Bid Site:  Derek Gausman, 325 South Columbia, handed out several pictures of the proposed K-bid site they would like to start at 1100 Atlantic Avenue, which is the site of West Central Implement.  He explained K-Bid is an online consignment auction.  People would bring their items to 1100 Atlantic Avenue, bidders would bid online, and then pick their items up at this site.  Derek Gausman and his father, Ron Gausman, are interested in purchasing the property at 1100 Atlantic Avenue and incorporating a K-Bid Auction Site into the existing farm implement dealership at the site. 

Derek Gausman identified several areas on the proposed site that need to be cleaned up.  He indicated the K-Bid site would be just to the north of the existing implement dealership.  Their goal would be to consign vehicles and heavy equipment, along with smaller household items.  The number of registered bidders in the surrounding 5 states is approaching 200,000.  They are interested in getting this business up and running and provide this service to the community.

Ron Gausman, 52348 210th Street, indicated he looks at this as a service for people that have a few items to sell that do not want people coming on to their property.  He noted he would like to think they could have up to 50 items/week.  There would be one inspection day, and several pick up days.  He feels this would be a good opportunity to bring people to Morris that may not come here otherwise.

Ex-officio Miller asked about how long items would be on display.  Ron Gausman replied items would be on display for a week to 10 days.  He noted pick up day is usually 2 days after the closing date of the auction.  Miller noted one of his concerns would be items not selling and sitting on the auction site for a long time.  Phil Gausman, 54098 210th Street, noted most K-Bid sites are very strict with their customers and police items very strictly.

It was noted any small items up for bid would be inside the present West Central Implement building. 

On the aerial photo of the site that Gausman provided it was noted that the present owners have items stored across their property line to the East, which is railroad property. 

Granger asked where customers would park.  Ron Gausman indicated there are 8 parking spots on the East side of Atlantic Avenue, along with street parking across the street.  Derek Gausman noted not all customers would be there at the same time on pick up day, so parking should not be a problem.  Granger asked if they have any off-street parking.  Ron Gausman indicated there are drives into the property they propose to purchase, so parking could be provided there.  Kuchenreuther noted that if this property is rezoned to HB, off-street parking would be required.  Miller noted customers could park east of the green line on the aerial map.

The other two pictures handed out by Derek Gausman are of the original and present K-Bid sites in Benson. 

Granger noted she is concerned about the storage of things at a main entrance to town.  She feels main street is not a good fit for a business like this. 

Hill noted that in the HB zone, if a person is selling someone elses merchandise, that merchandise has to be in a building or it must be fenced with a 5’ high fence..  Phil Gausman indicated he didn’t feel there would be a problem with screening the merchandise, because everything for sale would be pictured on the K-Bid site.  Derek Gausman indicated he feels it would be an advantage to not have to fence the merchandise. 

Kuchenreuther indicated the Planning Commission has a strong policy against spot zoning.  Hill noted changing this area from I1 to HB would not be spot zoning because this is right next to a HB zone.  He would recommend changing the zoning to residential (R) along 10th Street also.

Commissioner Gades noted he would not be in favor of fencing the merchandise as he feels that would make it look like an auto wrecking business.  Granger agreed and indicated she feels this is a tight site for this type of business. Kuchenreuther noted she felt this would clean up an eye sore.

Hill indicated the procedure would be to first change the zoning from I1 to HB, and then add online auction sites as a conditional use in the zone. 

Ron Gausman asked if the alleyway is owned by the City.  Hill indicated he didn’t think so, but indicated there is a utility right of way there.

Granger asked if there would be an issue with security.  Ron Gausman indicated he didn’t think so as they do not have any problems presently. 

The Planning Commission will take this request under consideration.

ADJOURNMENT:  There being no further business, Commissioner Gades moved, seconded by Livingston, to adjourn.  Motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 6:23.

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