The Washington City Council Monday approved a special use permit for an auto care facility despite objections from nearby residents calling for more detailed plans.
The council voted 5-1 in favor of the request by Mark Trebacz, owner of Carriage Care, in order to expand the business located at 1919 E. Fifth St. at Alberta Drive. Councilman Greg Skornia voted against the permit and Councilmen Steve Sullentrup and Jeff Mohesky abstained from the vote, but did not state why they were abstaining.
Trebacz recently purchased the building that had previously been used as an auto repair shop. The building was an auto repair shop before zoning codes were adopted so there never was a special use permit granted.
In order to become fully compliant with codes the special use permit is necessary.
Conditions placed on the permit include a white vinyl sight-proof fence be installed on the east side of the building along Alberta Street, and a portion of the north side property line. The fence must be installed within 30 days of the date the permit is granted. And cars stored on the lot must be behind the fence.
Another condition of the permit is hours of operation be between 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Marita Garbs who live son Alberta Drive, stated the plan for the business is incomplete.
“He needs to come back and have a better plan of what he is doing,” she said. “I want the business to succeed but to keep the neighborhood nice.”
Garbs and her husband, along with Mark Schulte, a St. Louis attorney who spoke on behalf of residents, asked the council to table the permit ordinance until a new plan that includes the dimension of vehicle lifts is submitted.
“I don’t think it has been thought all the way through,” Schulte said.
Skornia stated he was concerned that there were no dimensions shown on the drawing.
“As long as it meets building codes, I don’t care how big the concrete slab is or how long the ramps are,” said Councilman Josh Brinker.
Trebacz proposed two lifts on the property, including one with four piers that can be used for large trucks, RVs and buses. A smaller lift, with two piers would be used for smaller vehicles. Both lifts would be in the rear of the building.
“This is the first time we are hearing about two lifts,” said Schulte. “He doesn’t know where his boundaries are and he wants a little more.”
Trebacz has said he has been operating an auto care business for more than 35 years. He described the business as general auto repair.
According to Community and Economic Development Director Sal Maniaci, Trebacz began to build the lift but then was informed he needed a permit, and the location was in city right of way.