The St. Clair Planning and Zoning Commission denied a minor subdivision request at Monday night’s meeting.
Applicant Neal Kalishman with Boulder Development Corporation wanted to create two minor subdivisions to accommodate eight proposed homes. The two plats are located near North Outer Road West.
The board voted 4-1 in favor of denying the request because it does not meet the minor subdivision requirements. Commissioner Terry Gasaway vote against denying the request.
The request falls under a major subdivision request because the development would require an extension of a city water line and the creation of a privately shared road/driveway to reach the interior lots from the existing North Outer Road West, according to City Inspector Jeremy Crowe.
In order for the applicant to move forward with a major subdivision request, a preliminary plat, a public improvement plan would have to be submitted and approved, as well as a final plat, according to Crowe.
During the meeting, Kalishman argued that the lots would reach North Outer Road West by a shared driveway and no extension would be required.
“There is the question of what constitutes fronting. There is no definition of fronting in the regulations,” he said.
“However, under Missouri law, the simple rule is that some part of the lot, not a substantial part of the lot, has to touch the road or street for it to be considered fronting that thoroughfare and, in this case, it is the individual driveways that form the common/shared driveway that is fronting the North Outer Road West,” Kalishman added.
Crowe said a new road would have to be created to reach the existing lots. Chairman Darin Slater asked what would it take for Kalishman to change his request from a minor to a major subdivision.
“It’s impossible because if I go with a regular road, I have to put in improvements such as fire hydrants,” Kalishman said.
“The water line that comes out from out the city there was misdesigned. That was put in there originally there for the rest area on (Interstate) 44.”
He said the water line puts out 560 gallons per minute and the fire district requires a 1,000 gallons per minute.
“That would mean that whole pump station is inadequate,” Kalishman said. “In order to put the upgrades in this system, there’s been some discussion, but it would cost over $1 million for the city because they want to put in a tank.”
He added that in addition to the water line, an extension to the sewer would also be needed. By having this development as a minor subdivision, Kalishman said each home would have its own septic system. The subdivision would still have a fire protection because one fire hydrant is located near the property on North Outer Road West.
Kalishman reiterated that the lots do touch the north outer road. Alderman Art Viehland said other applicants have come before the board with similar requests of homes being built close to city streets and his concerns are that the streets would not be able to be expanded.
“It would just cause another fiasco for the city,” Viehland said.
Crowe said shared driveways “do come back to bite the city” because residents could have issues with access and maintenance of the driveway.
“They will come to the city requesting the city to annex that road or take over that road and we don’t want to be in that position in the future,” Crowe said.
Kalishman asked Crowe if the city would be willing to provide the necessary water requirements if he proposed a major subdivision. Crowe said he tried to reach an agreement with Kalishman about the water line in the past.
He said the cost to install the water tower and other water line work would cost around $700,000. Crowe added that the problem is that the water line is at the minimum pressure required by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.
“In the end, it would have cost (Kalishman) around $200,000 or less and the city would have reimbursed him for nearly half of the amount offered,” Crowe said.
Slater said the commission would recommend to board of aldermen to deny this request.