Board of Adjustment Minutes 10-5-11 Print E-mail




Montville Municipal Building, 195 Changebridge Road

8:00PM Regular Meeting

NOTE: No New Business to be conducted past 10:30 P.M.

Chairman Marinello welcomed the applicants and residents to the hearing and requested that everyone either turn off or silence their cell phones. 


Stated for the record.


Richard Moore - Absent[1]                   Thomas Buraszeski - Present

Donald Kanoff – Present                     James Marinello - Present

Deane Driscoll - Present                     Keith Olsen (Alt #1) - Present

Kenneth Shirkey – Present                 John Petrozzino (Alt #2) - Present

Gerard Hug - Present

Also Present:        Joseph Burgis, Planner - present

                                Stanley Omland, Engineer - present

                                Bruce Ackerman, Esq. - present


Stated for the record


Chairman Marinello opened the hearing for public comment.  Seeing no one wanting to be heard, Chairman Marinello closed the public portion.  He then reviewed procedure and expected timing.




ZSPP/FDC8-11 Romola Enterprises Site Plan with variances//ZSOIL9-11 Romola Enterprises Soil Movement application – 347 Changebridge Rd. – B: 160.2, L: 27 – Notice Acceptable                                                                                              ACT BY: 1/5/12

Present on behalf of the applicant: Steven Schepis, Esq.; Mark Walker, PE, Joseph Romola, Applicant, James Cutillo, AIA

Mr. Schepis – The applicant is requesting a Use Variance along with Preliminary and Final site plan as well as a soil movement permit application.  Mr. Schepis reviewed the site for the Board.  The industrial zone does not allow for auto body repair.  The side was previously Carlton Tool which closed in the mid 1990’s.  Mr. Romola has cleaned up the site to the satisfaction of DEP.  Mr. Romola is the proprietor of RAR Auto behind McDonalds on Old Bloomfield Ave. and wishes to move his operation to this site. 

Mark Walker, PE – sworn

                Exhibit marked in – A1 – colorized site plan dated 10/5/11

Page 2


                                A2 – colorized site plan with more site details dated 10/5/11

Mr. Walker – Lot 27 is the property that Mr. Romola’s site is on.  The neighboring property is part of the application because we will be improving part of the shared driveway on that lot.  We have frontage on Rt. 80 and Changebridge Rd.  The property has 1.86 acres and is a previously developed site as a tool shop.  There is a well and septic existing on the property.  The property is significantly lower than the roadway.  The existing building is 20’ higher than Rt. 80.  The back part of the property has delineated wetlands on the property.   We do have an LOI for the property.  There is a wooded buffer between our property and Rt. 80.  The building footprint will remain as it is.  There is a small area in the back that will be added to the building but the entire site will be redeveloped.  There will be one-way access from the southerly side of the property with exit from the northerly side of the property. 

Mr. Walker – Reviewed the parking areas on site.  A safe exit situation has been designed for the site.  We have designated 11 parking spaces but there is parking for upwards of 20 spaces in the gravel parking area. 

The gravel area is for parking of vehicles for cars to be worked on only.  There will be 7 auto body bays and 1 spray paint bay.  The landscaping will be entirely redone on site.  Building sign to be on building at 18’ where 8’ is allowed but our building is 10’ lower than the roadway.  Propose a 4’x8’ freestanding identification sign at the southerly side of the site.  We have septic on site, there is no sewer access, the septic system was upgraded not too long ago and the Health Department is confident with the septic system.  We will tie into the Municipal Water System and cap the well.  Propose a board on board fence by the visitor parking and the 2-lane access drive.  A chain link fence proposed around gravel parking area.  There is minor soil movement associated with site.  The applicant proposes a gross fill of 2,766 cy and a cut of 1,398, net fill to be brought on site is 1,368 cy, it is a minor amount.  The fill will come from the south so there would not be much truck traffic affecting Changebridge Rd.

Mr. Walker – Design exception requested for change in property within 5’ of the property line where we need a retaining wall.  Design exception requested for curbing.  Design exception requested for lighting into right of way.  The light is located directly adjacent to the parking spaces for appropriate lighting in that area.  Design exception for slope disturbance of: 


15 to 19.9%




20 to 24.9%








Mr. Walker – Using sheet 8 of 19 part of site plan last revised 9/12/11 Mr. Walker reviewed slope exceptions for the Board.  The slopes on the property were all initially man made. 

Mr. Walker – Variances requested for retaining wall height of 10’ if with fence must be combined.  4’ retaining wall with 6’ chain link fence for overall height of 10’.    But fence is setback 6’ from the retaining wall.  The retaining wall will not be seen from the front of the site.  There will be plantings in between the retaining wall and the fence.  Norway Spruce is proposed in that area.  Will be dedicating land along Changebridge Rd. to the County of Morris.  Before the dedication a 58’ front setback existed and with the dedication a variance will be required for 42’.  Mr. Schepis indicated if the board had an issue with the front setback than an easement can be dedicated instead to the Township.  144 parking spaces are required for this use, we propose 19.  Two sign variances are requested.  Propose a freestanding sign and a building mounted sign whereas one is permitted.  A ‘c’ variance is required for a second sign.  The building mounted sign is proposed at a height of 18 feet where a maximum of 8 feet is permitted. 

Mr. Walker – Minor drainage improvements are proposed on site.  Propose underground infiltration stormwater grade. 

Page 3


Mr. Walker – Discussed soil movement.  Sandy material.  Propose soil movement more than 1’ within 5’ of the property line.   It will not impact Changebridge Road.  There is no excavation within 10’ of a public street.  Mr. Walker indicated that it would take approximately 5 days for the soil movement process.  Addressed each condition required by ordinance.

Mr. Burgis – The curbing on the adjoining property?  Mr. Walker – Currently a one- way out driveway, if the neighbor needed a 2-way out driveway he would have to rip out curbing.  What exists today is a narrow driveway and we propose curbing on our side of the site pitched for water to go into our drainage.  Mr. Burgis – The parking standard is excessive.  The parking for this activity is adequate. 

Mr. Omland – Requested number of employees.  Mr. Walker deferred to the applicant.   Mr. Omland asked what the impervious coverage was proposed.  Mr. Walker -- adding less than 1,000 s.f. but are over 1 acre of disturbance.  Mr. Omland – There are no water quality devices proposed on site.  Mr. Walker – We are under ¼ acre.  Mr. Omland – Would like to know if accident vehicle storage would be in the gravel area with the possibility of oil/gas leaks reaching the wetland area.  Mr. Omland – How do we know the appropriate lab results show that the soil quality meets the standards of the township?  Mr. Schepis – will submit lab results to the Board of Health.  Mr. Omland is concerned that the water will sheet flow down the driveway instead of draining along the curb line as described to Mr. Burgis.  Mr. Walker – We can relocate the inlet #9 over or add another inlet on the opposite side of the roadway.

Mr. Walker – Going from 11’ driveway to an 18’ is a significant improvement, if the neighboring property owner wants to expand it in the future it would be up to them.  So no curbing because that expense would be wasted if the neighbor intended to expand one day. 

 Mr. Omland – The applicant has agreed to comply with streetscape lighting.  The front setback is measured into the Changebridge Road pavement.  Granting of the ROW to the County is the appropriate thing to do.  Mr. Omland questioned the location of the dumpster.  Mr. Walker – The applicant will discuss same. 

Open to public for this professional - none

Mr. Shirkey – Would like a cross section as to how the 18’ auto body shop sign will look from Changebridge Rd.  Where are you going to put snow on this property?  What is the square footage to be given to the County?  Dr. Kanoff – Would like to see documentation on septic upgrades.  Mr. Hug – Where is the septic field?  Can you see cars for repair from Changebridge Rd.?  Why do you need another sign on building if you have one on Changebridge Rd.?  Mr. Marinello – Need testimony on chain link fence design standards, sidewalks required along Changebridge Rd.?  Mr. Ackerman – Is there streetscape signage uniformity along Changebridge Road.  There has been no testimony of noise from the site.  Mr. Buraszeski – Would like numbers on impervious coverage.  Mr. Driscoll –Has the DRC reviewed the signage?  Mr. Olsen – Are there wetlands on the property and where is the 50’ buffer.  Do any of the neighbors have wells on their properties?  Why did you choose gravel for the rear parking lot and how are you going to deal with hazardous materials when you are using an old septic system.  Would like to know what the use is of the neighbor to the north and their parking usage on their property. 

Carried with notice preserved to 11/2/11


Minutes of September 7, 2011 Eligible: Moore, Driscoll, Shirkey, Hug, Buraszeski, Olsen, Petrozzino, Marinello

Motion to approve made by Buraszeski, seconded by Driscoll; Roll call: Yes – Driscoll, Shirkey, Hug, Buraszeski, Olsen, Petrozzino, Marinello

Page 4



Burgis Assoc – Trust for: $168.75, $135, $472.50, $978.75, $405, $202.50, $57.50

Pashman Stein – O/E for: $364.50; Trust for: $627.75, $1,377.00, $1,856.25

Johnson, Murphy – Trust for: $840

Omland Engineering – Trust for: $438.75, $202.50, $101.25, $202.50, $202.50, $337.50

Motion to approve made by Hug, seconded by Shirkey; Roll call: Unanimous




ZC8-10 –Grassi – B: 94, L: 13 – 7 Hillcrest Rd. – request for extension of approvals to 10/6/12

Motion to grant extension made by: Driscoll; Second by: Hug; Roll call: Yes – Driscoll, Kanoff, Shirkey, Hug, Olsen, Petrozzino, Marinello

ZDC28-08 Holiday at Montville – 29 Vreeland Ave.– B: 52.03, L: 19 – variance - request for extension of approvals to 10/7/12

Motion to grant extension made by: Driscoll; Second by: Shirkey; Roll call: Yes – Driscoll, Kanoff, Shirkey, Hug, Olsen, Petrozzino, Marinello

ZSPP/FD10-11 JCP&L – 9 Changebridge Rd. – B: 59.2, L: 2 – amended site plan with variances for sound wall – Notice Acceptable                                                              ACT BY: 1/24/12

Present on behalf of the applicant: John Beyel, Esq.; Kevin O’Brien, PP; Wayne Freeman, PE; Michael Obremski, JCP&L; Jack Kay, Acoustical Solutions; Mr. Ehrlich, Acoustical Engineer

Mr. Beyel – Requesting a use variance for an existing non-conforming use, variance for height of sound wall and pre/final site plan approval.  The sound from the property is not satisfactory to the applicant or the community so we propose a sound wall to alleviate this problem. 

Michael Obremski, factual witness, area manager from JCP&L – sworn

This substation has been in existence since 1965.  We have been before this board in the past.  We are making efforts over the years to reduce the noise/vibration for the operation.  Testing of the sound levels will be done if the board approves this application and the sound wall is installed.  

Wayne Freeman, PE – sworn

Mr. Freeman reviewed the location of the proposed sound wall for the Board.  The integrity of the wall will be structurally sound.  The nearest transformer will be 40’ away from the sound wall. 

Jack Kay, Acoustical Solutions - sworn

Reviewed work done within New Jersey & New York.  Reviewed a sound wall elevation for the board. 

                A1 – larger scale version of page 4 of wall detail

                A2 – larger scale version of sound wall barrier

Mr. Kay – A 4-man crew will install the sound wall.  Reviewed construction details for the Board. 

Page 5


                A3 – sample of galvanized steel wall cell material.

                A4 – photo board of sound wall example

Mr. Ehrlich, Acoustical Engineer – sworn – reviewed credentials

The sound wall will be located 40’ from the noise source.  25’ height will reduce the sound to the noise ordinance limits.  The walls are proposed to reduce the noise levels from transformers 3a & 3b. 

Kevin O’Brien, PP – sworn

                A 5 – photo sets

Mr. O’Brien – There is a 14’ height limit for accessory structure where the applicant is proposing a height of 25’.  Requesting Use variance along with pre/final site plan and c variance.  Reviewed the additional landscaping that was installed at the last application in 2005.  Additional landscaping cannot be placed within the drainage easement, Algonquin Gas easement or within the substation itself.  JCP&L will install landscaping within their constraints and will meet with Mr. Burgis on site to determine where landscaping can be installed.  Reviewed the Sica balancing test for the board. 

Mr. Burgis – They have addressed my concerns and have agreed to meet on site to determine where additional landscaping could be installed.

Mr. Omland – Did the existing conditions when the transformers were operating exceed the noise limits allowed?  Mr. Ehrlich – I did not perform the tests myself, but they were over the noise ordinance.  The proposed noise levels would meet the ordinance.  Discussion ensued on location of sound wall, noise levels and noise ordinance standards.   

Mr. Beyel – Post construction noise levels will have to meet the ordinance requirements of today.  Mr. Ehrlich – The current noise was 9 decibels over the allowable ordinance and will meet the ordinance post construction.  Testing will be done after construction to make sure the noise levels meet the ordinance.

Open to public

Steve Samitt, 2 Ridge Dr. – sworn

Have you addressed the possibility of blocking the noise to the east of the property?  Mr. Ehrlich – It does not break the line of sight there but the sound levels meet the ordinance currently to the east.   

Gary Lewis – 5 Cooks Farm Rd – Sworn

Did not hear testimony relative to the relationship of the height of the wall and the distance of the noise source.  Did not hear testimony of the status of walls existing elsewhere and how they hold up visually over years.

Mr. Ehrlich – There is a linear relationship from height of wall and distance to transformers.  Mr. Kay – It is a smooth surface so it can be cleaned up easily.  The wall system has been in operation for about 40 years and the galvanizing will last about 40-50 years.  Can easily be sandblasted and painted.

Mr. Lewis – It is a tall wall and I assume it is not finished.

Ms. Fiorenzi – 7 Cooks Farm – sworn

Can it be painted so it does not look like a big steel wall?  Mr. Kay – The gray color blends in with the equipment that is there.  It can be painted but it will stand out.

Page 6


Camille Bressman – 6  Old Farm – sworn

Concerned with the noise factor.  Mr. Ehrlich – Will be back after construction to take noise measurements to make sure it meets the noise ordinance. 

Mr. Ackerman – How many wall installations have failed to meet the computer simulation?  Mr. Ehrlich – Usually they meet the ordinances after construction.

Chris Fiorenzi – Sworn

Will this wall eliminate the problem on my property?  Mr. Beyel – It is our expectations that it will achieve the necessary standards since we are putting money into this development.  Mr. Fiorenzi – Can the wall be longer?  Mr. Beyel – If the sound results are not satisfactory we may have to extend the wall.  We are trying not to make it bigger than we need to.

Mr. Petrozzino – Can you make the wall higher to alleviate possibly more noise toward the residences?  Mr. Olsen – Would like to see statistical information on sound and how the wall would alleviate the noise.  Mr. Driscoll – Would like more definite information on the exact size and height of the wall that would reduce the noise to ordinance standards.  Mr. Buraszeski – Will there be sun glare?  Mr. Kay – It is galvanized and will not create sun glare, the equipment on site is battleship gray and so will the wall be battleship gray.    Mr. Buraszeski – Would like to see if another color would be less obtrusive.  Mr. Beyel – From a maintenance perspective, the galvanized steel is better than painting the wall.  Mr. Marinello – Is the Sica test satisfied for this application because the use is beneficial -- but does that extend to the wall?  Need testimony on the effect of the properties to the east.  Mr. Ehrlich – Virtually 100% of the sound will be absorbed by the wall.

NOTE: Mr. Hug stepped out

Mr. Marinello – Would like testimony on how much closer it can be to the transformers.  Need photo simulation of sound wall or balloon test.

NOTE Mr. Hug returned

Mr. Hug – Would like costs of wall and costs of new transformers that have less of a noise output.  Mr. Shirkey – Would like the noise levels prior to the installation in 2005.  Mr. Ackerman – Test the noise levels with the 2 newest transformers turned off.  Mr. Marinello asked Mr. Burgis to have information on sidewalks available at the next hearing.

Carried with notice preserved to 11/2/11


Planning Board Liaison Update – Review the Draft Zoning Ordinance that was given to all board members.  Olde Towne Properties application was dismissed without prejudice.

There being no further business the board adjourned the meeting.

Respectfully submitted,

Jane Grogaard, Recording Secretary

Page 7


Certified true copy of minutes adopted at Zoning Board meeting of November 2, 2011.


Meghan Hunscher, Sec.

[1] Absent with explanation


Last Updated ( Thursday, 03 November 2011 )
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