CITY OF SURPRISE
PLANNING AND ZONING COMMISSION
Bell Road, Suite D-100
Surprise, Arizona 85374
March 18, 2008
Call to Order:
Somers called the Planning and Zoning Commission workshop meeting to order at 5:03
p.m. in the Surprise City Hall, 12425 West Bell Road, Suite D100, Surprise, Arizona 85374, on Tuesday, March 18, 2008.
In attendance with Chair Blair
were Vice Chair Steve Somers, Commissioners Matthew Bieniek, Ken Chapman, John
Hallin, Robert Rein, and Fred Watts.
Planner Dennis Dorch provided a brief overview of the
planning application process, noting that the process is currently being reviewed
and updated. He pointed out that all applications and process guides are
listed on the city’s website for the applicant’s convenience.
In response to questions, Planner Dorch explained that most
concerns are handled at the TAC (Technical Advisory Committee) meeting level.
When department’s have issues with a project, they ask the applicant to respond
with resolutions. It was emphasized that responses to TAC are evaluated and
typically resolved prior to scheduling the project for Planning and Zoning
Commission review and approval. Generally, a TAC meeting is scheduled within
two weeks of submittal.
Planner Dorch talked about how each of the departments evaluate
the project and submit their comments to the project manager through the city’s
Land Information System (LIS). Most all projects require notification to
agencies such as Luke, ADOT, and schools. He also noted that there are specific
projects that require that an outreach meeting be held and others are conducted
at the director’s discretion.
In response to inquiries, Planner Dorch stressed that Planning
cannot approve a project at this time without a 100-year assurance of water. Water
Services reviews every project submitted to Community Development. Acting
Director Rice referred to the integrated water master plan, noting that developers
are responsible for meeting the requirements of the plan. For better
understanding of this plan, it was determined that a workshop could be held in
the future to discuss the integrated water master plan.
Responding to various questions from Chair Blair, Planner
Dorch indicated that developers typically have one year from date of approval to
begin developing a site plan. However, if a property is rezoned, that is a
land-use designation which never expires. He stressed that minor adjustments to
most projects can be administratively approved after the Planning and Zoning
Commission initial approval.
There was some discussion regarding the master sign program.
Concerns were noted about some signage, specifically regarding safety issues
where signs are placed. Commissioner Rein stressed that there is a difference
in meeting code and being practical; he was concerned that the Commission does not
vote on signage.
Planner Dorch indicated that planners will not typically bring
a project forward without the developer addressing the schools. Agreements
between the school and developer may be available to the Commission. Commissioners
talked briefly about specific developments with issues regarding a school site,
specifically in areas with sparsely populated areas.
In response to Chair Blair, Planner Dorch explained that
Commissioners are encouraged to exercise independent judgment for each of the
projects presented to them. Certainly, it is important to consider the staff
recommendation. He also mentioned that if a Commissioner has a question
regarding any of the projects on an agenda, they should contact the planner
before the meeting for clarification.
Commissioner Rein requested that when contemplating workshop
topics, it would be prudent to consider discussing roads and transportation.
Commissioner Hallin mentioned that it would be a good idea
to have a bus tour of the city and its developments.
Pursuant to A.R.S. §
38-431.03(A)(3), the Planning and Zoning Commission may go into executive
session with the City Attorney for legal advice on any item listed on the
Hearing no further business, the Planning and Zoning
Commission workshop meeting was adjourned on Tuesday, March 18, 2008, at 5:49 p.m.