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HDC_04 14 2014Page 1 of 11 LITTLE ROCK HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION MINUTES Monday, April 14, 2014, 5:00 p.m. Board Room, City Hall I. Roll Call Quorum was present being six (6) in number. Members Present: Randy Ripley BJ Bowen Toni Johnson Mark Brown Rachelle Walsh Members Absent: Open Position Kwadjo Boaitey City Attorney: Debra Weldon Staff Present: Brian Minyard Citizens Present: Josh Malone John Pagen II. Approval of Minutes A motion was made by Commissioner BJ Bowen to approve the minutes of March 10, 2014 as corrected. Commissioner Rachelle Walsh seconded and the minutes were approved with a vote of 5 ayes, one absent and 1 open position. Notice requirements were met on all applications to be heard tonight. The City provided notices for the demolition application on 315 E 11th. DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT 723 West Markham Street Little Rock, Arkansas 72201-1334 Phone: (501) 371-4790 Fax: (501) 399-3435 Page 2 of 11 DATE: April 14, 2014 APPLICANT: Josh Malone ADDRESS: 315 E 11th Street COA REQUEST: Demolition PROJECT BACKGROUND AND DESCRIPTION: The subject property is located at 315 E 11th Street. The property’s legal description is “Lot 12, Block 46, Original City of Little Rock, Pulaski County, Arkansas." This house was built around 1885. The 2006 survey form states: “This simple gable front national folk style house is one room wide and is similar to “shotgun” style houses found in Southern cities.” It is considered a "Contributing Structure" to the MacArthur Park Historic District. This application is for Demolition of the structure as a result of neglect of maintenance. PREVIOUS ACTIONS ON THIS SITE: On June 7, 2000, a Memorandum was signed to approve for interior and exterior repairs including a new roof. On July 11, 1991, a COA was denied from Jolie Giroir to demolish the building. PROPOSAL AND WRITTEN ANALYSIS OF THE APPLICATION BASED OFF OF INTENT AND GUIDELINES: The Guidelines state on page 65: “Demolition of significant buildings, which contribute to the historic or architectural integrity of an historic district, should not occur. The loss of a “contributing” historic building diminishes the overall character of the district and could jeopardize the National Register Historic District status. Demolition by neglect occurs when routine maintenance procedures are not followed, allowing damage from weather, water, insects or animals. Proper routine maintenance DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT 723 West Markham Street Little Rock, Arkansas 72201-1334 Phone: (501) 371-4790 Fax: (501) 399-3435 STAFF REPORT ITEM NO. A. Location of Project Page 3 of 11 and/or rehabilitation are strongly recommended. “Care should be taken when reviewing for an application for demolition of a structure that was not 50 years old at the time of the survey, but are now or close to 50 years old at the time of application. If the district was resurveyed, these buildings may be contributing, but may not be contributing. These applications should be taken on a case by case basis and carefully examine the architecture of the individual building as well as their context within the district. “Under certain conditions, however, demolition permits may be granted by the Historic District Commission: 1. The public safety and welfare requires the removal of the building, as determined by the building or code inspector and concurring reports commissioned by and acceptable to the LRHDC from a structural engineer, architect, or other person expert in historic preservation. 2. Rehabilitation or relocation is impossible due to severe structural instability or irreparable deterioration of a building. 3. Extreme hardship has been demonstrated, proven, and accepted by the LRHDC. Economic hardship relates to the value and potential return of the property, not to the financial status of the property owner. 4. The building has lost its original architectural integrity and no longer contributes to the district. 5. No other reasonable alternative is feasible, including relocation of the building. Demolition of secondary buildings (garages, sheds, etc.) may be appropriate if they have substantially deteriorated (requiring 50% or more replacement of exterior siding, roof rafters, surface materials, and structural members.) Josh Malone, the applicant, has owned the property since December 2003 according to the Pulaski County Assessor’s office. At the time of purchase, the house was in better condition than it is now as was able to be repaired. In mid-2004, the applicant appeared before the Planning Commission to divide the lot into two parcels. From the Planning Commission Staff report; “The further intent is to renovate the single family dwelling to allow the unit to become functional once again. The applicant has indicated this would not be suitable if the two continued to share a lot.” The applicant, Mr. Malone, received his zoning change and permission to split the lot into two lots. He did not however, do the required improvements to the sewer infrastructure to have the LR Wastewater to sign off on the lot split, so the lot remains one lot to this day. Staff did refer him to AHPP to discuss state and federal income tax credits after the passage of the state credit in 2009. The applicant did meet with the AHPP staff but did not pursue restoration of the building. This structure has been on the Unsafe/Vacant List since February 2005 and has been allowed to deteriorate since that point. Staff believes that this structure is beyond renovation without extraordinary means. The property could have been renovated even up till 2007 or later as the photos below show. Page 4 of 11 The Guidelines set forth five criteria listed above. This property conforms to the three of the criteria: #1 - public safety and welfare, #2 - rehabilitation and relocation is unfeasible, and #5 - no other reasonable alternative is feasible. North 11th street façade ca. 1988 from survey III. North 11th street façade ca. 1991 South façade ca. 1991 North 11th street façade ca. 2007 from survey East façade ca. 2007 from survey Page 5 of 11 North 11th street façade December 2103 East façade December 2013 East façade December 2013 West Façade December 2013 NEIGHBORHOOD COMMENTS AND REACTION: At the time of distribution, there were two phone calls concerning the application, one in favor of the demolition and one neutral. STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Approval with the following conditions: 1. Obtaining a demolition permit. COMMISSION ACTION: March 10, 2013 Brian Minyard made a presentation of the item. Commissioner Kwadjo Boaitey asked about the amount of money to rehab the structure. Mr. Minyard stated that the applicant provides that information. He provided examples of the building that show that it is beyond the point of repair. Vice-Chair Toni Johnson asked the applicant to tell the Commission when he bought the property and give a background of the project. He said that there was a hole in the roof and part of the floor was missing when he bought it. He said that over the years he has had contractors look at the structure to rehab it. He continued that he recently met with Planning Staff and Housing and Neighborhood Programs Staff about either rehabbing or demolishing the house. He stated that he had talked to Roger McCoy but Mr. McCoy did not give him any documentation about how much it would cost to rehab the project. He did not say that it could not be rehabbed, but it would require tearing most of it down to build the rest back. He said that his long term plan was some parking off the alley. Page 6 of 11 Vice-Chair Johnson asked what his intentions were for the property in 2003 when he bought the property. He said that he had originally planned to renovate for a single family residence. He said that a new sewer main (a requirement of the subdivision of the lot into two lots) was cost prohibitive - $15,000. Vice-Chair Johnson said that they hate to see the neighborhood losing a historic structure. Mr. Malone said that he had made efforts to renovate it. She asked why he did not sell it. He said that he could not split the lot to sell it because of the high cost of the sewer main – a requirement of the subdivision. Mr. Minyard explained the issue of sewer lines running across other people’s property and sewer mains on the request of Vice-Chair Johnson. Commissioner Rachelle Walsh asked if he pursued tax credits on the structure. Mr. Malone stated that he knew of them, but did not pursue them. No citizens came forth to speak for or against the application. Before that motion was made, Mr. Minyard stated that with only four members present, he had to get all of the votes present in favor of his application. He accepted the offer to defer his application to the next meeting. Mr. Minyard stated that the City would mail the notices for the deferral and that the deferral would not count against him. A motion to defer to the April 2104 meeting was made by Commissioner Walsh and seconded by Commissioner Boaitey. The motion passed with a voter of 4 ayes, 2 absent (Bowen and Ripley) and 1 open position. STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Approval with the following conditions: Obtaining a demolition permit. COMMISSION ACTION: April 14, 2014 Brian Minyard, Staff, made a presentation of the item and Staff recommendation. It was deferred from the last meeting. This application is for demolition for a lack of maintenance. He reviewed the guidelines as to when to demolish a building and recommended demolition of this building. Vice Chair Toni Johnson asked if this is listed as a contributing structure in the district. Mr. Brian Minyard stated that it was contributing on the 1988 and the 2006 survey. Commissioner BJ Bowen asked if the Staff thought that this building was too far gone. Mr. Minyard said that was correct. Mr. Bowen asked if it could be moved to another site. Mr. Minyard replied that he thought the building was not stable enough to be moved. He detailed parts of the building and the problems with different sections of the building. He continued that if the building was water tight and sound, this would be a different conversation. Vice-Chair Johnson asked when it appeared on the unsafe and vacant list. Mr. Minyard responded that his email from the Housing Department stated since February 2005. She wanted to know the frequency of the revision of the list and that maybe the structure was on the list when he bought it. Mr. Minyard was not sure how often the list is updated, but he did say that he thought that they tried to keep it up to date. Mr. Minyard continued that the state income tax credit was passed in 2009 and that in his opinion, the structure was repairable. The photos in 2007 show the roof ridge was still straight and the roof trusses had not started to push the walls out. The applicant had a conversation with Tom Marr at AHPP about the tax credits and I had a conversation with Mr. Marr after that conversation. Mr. Minyard said that a property can be on the Unsafe/Vacant list for a myriad of Page 7 of 11 reasons from unsafe wiring to inadequate plumbing. It is on the list because it is not safe for human habitation. Just because it is on the list does not mean that it cannot be rehabbed. Mr. Josh Malone said that the structure had been vacant since the 1980’s and had a hole in the floor. It was gutted and may piers had been gone. It was his intention to rehab it but could not find a contractor to give him a firm budget. He attempted to split the lot, but the cost of splitting the sewer system was cost prohibitive. He has tried to find contractors recently but was not successful. Vice Chair Johnson asked if he had at any time considered giving that structure away to someone. He doubted that it was able to be moved. Commissioner Rachelle Walsh asked why he did not pursue the tax credits in 2009. Mr. Malone said that no contractors at that time would give him a firm budget and was unable to get financing without that firm budget. Commissioner Ripley asked what his plan was for the area if it was demolished. Mr. Malone said ultimately parking for the four-plex but at the minimum the plan would be to fence the back yard. There are garages on that alley for other lots in that block. Mr. Ripley stated that whatever he did on the site would have to come before this Commission. There were no citizens to speak on this item. A motion was made by Commissioner Mark Brown to approve the demolition at 315 E 11th as described with staff recommendations. Commissioner Ripley seconded and the motion failed with a vote of 2 ayes (Ripley and Brown), 3 noes (Johnson, Walsh and Bowen), and 1 open position. Mr. Minyard stated that the applicant must receive a majority of the entire commission to get an item passed (4 votes). An applicant may come back to the Commission one year from now with the same application or earlier with a different application. An applicant has 30 days to appeal this decision. Page 8 of 11 DATE: April 14, 2014 APPLICANT: John Pagan, Arkansas Arts Center ADDRESS: 501 E 9th Street COA REQUEST: Banner PROJECT BACKGROUND AND DESCRIPTION: The subject property is located at 501 East 9th Street. The property’s legal description is “Part of Section 2, T1N, R12W, more particularly described as that part of the SW lying east of Quapaw Line, West of McAlmont Street and South of East 9th Street, Pulaski County, Arkansas." Both the 1988 and 2007 survey lists the structure as a 1960’s museum building of a non-contributing status. The original building was a WPA Moderne building built ca 1937 as shown on page 43 of the Guidelines. The front façade can be seen in one of the galleries. The building has been added onto in several stages over the years. DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT 723 West Markham Street Little Rock, Arkansas 72201-1334 Phone: (501) 371-4790 Fax: (501) 399-3435 STAFF REPORT ITEM NO. One. Location of Project North elevation with banner Photo of most of north elevation Page 9 of 11 The temporary banners to promote the various exhibits were installed without a COA. These banners are proposed to be changed three or four times a year for the various exhibits but occupy the same space and size for each. PREVIOUS ACTIONS ON THIS SITE: On July 14, 2008, a COA was approved for a sign at 9th and Commerce and a screen wall around new air conditioning units visible from Commerce Street. On March 17, 1989, approval for additions and modifications to the building. On May 7, 1998, approval with conditions for a 31,500 sf addition to the building complex. PROPOSAL AND WRITTEN ANALYSIS OF THE APPLICATION BASED OFF OF INTENT AND GUIDELINES: The guidelines state on page 70: 5. Signs on Commercial Structures: Signs on commercial buildings should be in proportion to the building and should be made of historic materials, such as finished carved wood, glass, copper, or bronze letters. Signs of plastic, plywood, or unfinished wood are not appropriate. Signs should be placed at traditional locations, such as on storefront beltcourses, upper façade walls, hanging or mounted inside windows, or projecting from the face of the building. Lighting for signs should be concealed; up-lit or spot lighting is recommended. “Ghost” signs (historic painted wall signs, frequently on sides of brick buildings) should be preserved and not removed. This application is for a series of banners to be located in the same location as shown in photo above. The size of the banners would not change, but the content would for each unique exhibit. While the size of the banner seems quite large at 57 feet long, the building façade length as measured along the circular drive is between 360 and 550 feet long depending on where you measure the building. This would mean that the sign would be between 10% and 15% of the total width of the building. NEIGHBORHOOD COMMENTS AND REACTION: At the time of distribution, there were no comments regarding this application. STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Approval with the following conditions: 2. Obtaining a sign permit. Close up of north elevation with banner Page 10 of 11 COMMISSION ACTION: March 10, 2014 Brian Minyard, Staff, made a presentation of the item and Staff recommendation. He discussed the banner and the non-contributing status of the building. They are seeing approval for the location and size of the banner. The content would change based on the exhibit at the time. Commissioner W alsh asked if they wanted an even bigger sign in the future for a special exhibit, would they have to come back for that. Mr. Minyard said that they would be required to. He said that the commission would be setting the maximum size of the banner, but they could do smaller with staff approval. Commissioner BJ Bowen asked about banners that are sometimes hung from the front of the building by the big fountain. Mr. Minyard said that with a lot of research, it was shown that those banners were included in the approval for the addition at that time. Commissioner Ripley asked when the district was established. Mr. Minyard said that the earliest records he has are from 1981. He said that the COAs in the files really pick up in the mid-1980s. Commissioner Walsh asked if there was any lighting on the banner. Mr. Minyard said that there was not any as far as he knew. Mr. John Pagan said that there were lights there, but there are no plans to turn them on. Mr. Ripley asked if the fabric was vinyl. Mr. Pag an said yes. Commissioner Walsh asked if all of the banners would be of that material. He responded that they would be that or see through materials that they use on the front of the building. Mr. Ripley asked how it was attached to the building. Mr. Pagan said it was physically screwed to the building into the mortar joints using the same holes as much as possible. Mr. Pagan complimented Staff on his help and getting the Art Center up to speed on the rules and regulations. There were no citizens to speak on this item. Mr. Minyard reminded the Commission that they were given an email from Stephan McAteer at the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History in support of the application. A motion was made by Commissioner BJ Bowen to approve the signage at 501 E 9th as described with staff recommendations and conditions. Commissioner Walsh seconded and the motion was approved with a vote of 5 ayes, 1 absent, and 1 open position. V. Other Matters Enforcement issues Enforcement issues brought to the attention of the Staff was the commercial store on East 6th street. Signs in the windows are the main issue. They are violating a basic sign ordinance in addition to the HDC standards, so this could be taken to the municipal court. Certificates of Compliance Staff wrote 1 COC this month and copies were given to the Commissioners. The discussion focused on the car wreck on Cumberland and ran into two houses. Both owners were contacted and one COC was issued. Further discussion was foced on who managed the property, and steps taken to get the house put back the way is should have been. Citizen Communication Patricia Blick, AHPP CLG coordinator spoke of training upcoming in Philadelphia in July 2014. She is also working on the every 4 year audit. She asked that if the commission wanted to contribute to the questionnaire, how they would do that and why. Mr. Minyard said that he would forward that to the Commission for their review. Vacancy /Training /Retreat There have been two applicants for the open position that closed recently. Mr. Minyard announced the two applicants at the request of Randy Ripley. Commissioner Brown asked how the new person would be chosen. Mr. Minyard stated that the Mayor chosen the Commissioner and then the Board of Directors confirms the person. There are no applications for the May 2014 meeting. We will not meet on that day unless the Commission wants to have a retreat. Vice Chair asked if there was something they should be working on. Mr. Minyard said that after we go the new member on the commission, that they should take advantage of any training available whether they be in state or out of state. Part of the Grant was for redo of the guidelines, so a retreat is handy for that sort of item. VI. Adjournment There was a motion to adjourn and the meeting ended at 5:47 p.m. Attest: a Secretary/Staff t\ C4 Daft Date Page 11 of 11