Leon Valley
TX

Staff Report
17-85

Discussion, Presentation, and Possible Action to Approve the Placement and Operation of a New Pavilion at CB 4432C Block 5 Lot SE IRRG 150.38FT OF 10 ARB 10A, also known as 6600 Strawflower, and Located at the Corner of Peachtree and Poss Roads

Information

Department:Public WorksSponsors:
Category:Presentation

Item Discussion

PURPOSE

 

The purpose of this M & C is to re-discuss and possibly approve the construction of a  pavilion on the vacant lot at the corner of Peachtree and Poss Roads.

 

The City owns and operates the Leon Valley Community Pool, located at 6600 Strawflower Street. Adjacent to this pool is a remaining vacant lot that has been used in the past to park vehicles for the Fourth of July Celebration. The rest of the year, the lot sits vacant and is mowed and maintained by Public Works. It was proposed to construct a pavilion on this site, which would allow rental venue for pool parties or for other party type events.

 

This item was approved by both the Park Commission (June) and the City Council (July), but shortly after the approval, an opposition page with signatures was received from surrounding property owners stating their disapproval of the plans. The subject was remanded back to the Park Commission for further discussion. A survey was sent to residents within 200 ft. of the site, asking for their input. Fifteen (15) responses were received, with thirteen (13) in opposition and two (2) in favor of a pavilion.

 

At the September 14th Park Commission meeting, the Park Commission was given the surveys and the document expressing opposition, and they again discussed the proposal. None of the persons that submitted a survey or that were in opposition were in attendance. The Park Commissioners noted that the surveys indicated the causes for concern from the neighbors were the potential for noise, trash, traffic, criminal activity, and excessive parking along Peachtree. Several of the survey respondents stated that there was excessive noise already being experienced from the small pavilion along Poss Road from rentals.

 

The survey responses also indicated that the majority of residents would like the Peachtree lot to remain vacant, being used only for overflow parking during the special events, with the exception of planting some trees and possibly placing benches on the site. One respondent suggested making a map out of pavers and using the area as an educational tool.

 

The two surveys that were in favor of a pavilion stated that they would also like to have running water, outdoor games like horseshoes or corn toss, a playground area, barriers to keep people from trampling on adjacent private property, adopt a clear and specific policy requiring city personnel to routinely collect trash on adjacent properties, and to provide a name that would highlight the Poss family (this area was once owned by the Poss family).

 

A general discussion was held, with the Commissioners noting that the pool was already present, which caused noise due to its use, that the Police Department should be contacted when a noise nuisance is present at any public facility, that the pool needed a rental venue to make it more comparable to the Forest Oaks pool property and to offset some of the expenses, and that the property was zoned B-1 (Small Business) - not residential. They then stated that while they didn’t want to ignore the concerns of the residents, using the lot for just once a year parking was not an efficient use of the site.

 

The Commissioners stated that a compromise should be reached and that compromise could be to use the same rules as the parks, limiting the usage hours during the off-season rentals to sunrise to sunset, providing “No Parking” signs along Peachtree, providing a fence between the residential property to the north, restricting or prohibiting loud speakers or amplifiers, and installing a Low Impact Design parking lot to reduce potential run off from parked cars.

 

SEE LEON VALLEY

 

Social Equity - Providing the citizens with additional park amenities adds to the overall quality of life.

 

Economic Development - Increasing available park facilities may entice more residents, which would attract more businesses to either stay in or relocate to Leon Valley.

 

Environmental Stewardship - Parks and park facilities are critical in the role of preserving natural resources that have real economic benefits for communities. Installing park facilities provides opportunities to get children outside and provides education & programming that help communities engage with each other.

 

FISCAL IMPACT

 

Projected costs:

·              Pavilion                                                        $20,000

·              Electric                                                        $2,000

·              Parking area                                                        Unknown

·              Total                                                                      Unknown

Projected Income (annual)

·              Rental ($75 x 100 +/-)                            $7,500

·              Application fee ($40 x 100 +/-)              $4000

·              Total                                                                      $11,500

 

An exact amount won't be known until after the pool season is over.

Document Comments

PARK COMMISSION RECOMMENDATION

 

The Park Commission voted to recommend approval of the construction of a pavilion at this site to the City Council, contingent upon creating regulations, installing fencing, landscaping screening at the adjacent residence, and “No Parking” signs along Peachtree.

 

Meeting History

Oct 2, 2017 6:00 PM  City Council Regular Meeting

Interim Director of Community Development Melinda Moritz presented the item to discuss and possibly approve the construction of a pavilion on the vacant lot at the corner of Peachtree and Poss Roads.

The City owns and operates the Leon Valley Community Pool, located at 6600 Strawflower Street. Adjacent to this pool is a remaining vacant lot that has been used in the past to park vehicles for the Fourth of July Celebration. The rest of the year, the lot sits vacant and is mowed and maintained by Public Works. It was proposed to construct a pavilion on this site, which would allow rental venue for pool parties or for other party type events.

This item was previously approved by both the Park Commission and the City Council, but shortly after the approval, an opposition page with signatures was received from surrounding property owners stating their disapproval of the plans. The subject was remanded back to the Park Commission for further discussion. A survey was sent to residents within 200 ft. of the site, asking for their input. Fifteen (15) responses were received, with thirteen (13) in opposition and two (2) in favor of a pavilion.

At the September 14th Park Commission meeting, the Park Commission was given the surveys and the document expressing opposition, and they again discussed the proposal. None of the persons that submitted a survey or that were in opposition were in attendance. The Park Commissioners noted that the surveys indicated the causes for concern from the neighbors were the potential for noise, trash, traffic, criminal activity, and excessive parking along Peachtree. Several of the survey respondents stated that there was excessive noise already being experienced from the small pavilion along Poss Road from rentals. The survey responses also indicated that the majority of residents would like the Peachtree lot to remain vacant, being used only for overflow parking during the special events, with the exception of planting some trees and possibly placing benches on the site. One respondent suggested making a map out of pavers and using the area as an educational tool.

The two surveys that were in favor of a pavilion stated that they would also like to have running water, outdoor games like horseshoes or corn toss, a playground area, barriers to keep people from trampling on adjacent private property, adopt a clear and specific policy requiring city personnel to routinely collect trash on adjacent properties, and to provide a name that would highlight the Poss family (this area was once owned by the Poss family). A general discussion was held, with the Park Commissioners noting that the pool was already present, which caused noise due to its use, that the Police Department should be contacted when a noise nuisance is present at any public facility, that the pool needed a rental venue to make it more comparable to the Forest Oaks pool property and to offset some of the expenses, and that the property was zoned B-1 (Small Business) - not residential. They then stated that while they didn’t want to ignore the concerns of the residents, using the lot for just once a year parking was not an efficient use of the site.

Interim Director Moritz concluded the presentation saying the Park Commissioners stated that a compromise should be reached and that compromise could be to use the same rules as the parks, limiting the usage hours during the off-season rentals to sunrise to sunset, providing “No Parking” signs along Peachtree, providing a fence between the residential property to the north, restricting or prohibiting loud speakers or amplifiers, and installing a Low Impact Design parking lot to reduce potential run off from parked cars.

Mayor Riley said she did not recall City Council ever approving this but did recall approving a budget for it.

City Manager Kuenstler reminded everyone that a “petition” was not submitted but yet a “document of opposition”.

There was a lengthy discussion followed by citizen input.

Council Member Benny Martinez mentioned that he would like to see the Forest Oaks Pool Party Room rented out which City Manager Kuenstler said would not be a problem.

· Michael MacDonald, 6630 Peachtree, spoke in opposition of placing a pavilion at the proposed location.

· Carolyn Alvarado, 6711 Peachtree, spoke in opposition of placing a pavilion at the proposed location.

· Jesus DeLaGarza, 6602 Peachtree, spoke in opposition of placing a pavilion at the proposed location.

· Juan Monsivais, 6610 Peachtree, spoke in opposition of placing a pavilion at the proposed location.

· David Dewitty, (?) Larksong spoke in opposition of placing a pavilion at the proposed location.

· Aurelia DeLaGarza, 6602 Peachtree, spoke in opposition of placing a pavilion at the proposed location.

· Larry Proffitt, 6307 Rue Sophie, asked about adding bathrooms if the pavilion was placed as proposed.

A motion was made by Council Member Benny Martinez to deny the proposal to construct a pavilion on the vacant lot next to the Leon Valley Swimming Pool. A Point of Clarification was requested by Council Member Monica Alcocer. Council Member Martinez announced that Council Member Alcocer had just seconded his motion. She replied that she had not, to which he replied, “Yes, by opening your mouth, you seconded my motion” and that is part of the law. City Attorney Denise Frederick informed Council Member Martinez that this was incorrect. Council Member Martinez disagreed.

Council Member Monica Alcocer continued with the Point of Clarification that the agenda item specifically says “discussion, presentation and possible action to approve the placement and operation of a new pavilion” and I believe we are restricted to that issue.

Council Member David Edwards then asked for a Point of Clarification was there ever actually a vote by the City Council approving this? Mayor Riley said she did not recall that and Council Member Edwards said he did not either. City Manager Kuenstler said she could clarify that and that it did come to City Council during the budget after the Park Commission discussed it and that to her knowledge that was the only time it had come before City Council other than the time City Council sent it back to the Park Commission.

Council Member Alcocer asked that Interim Director Moritz clarify that for them. Interim Director Moritz said she would need to go back into the records but she believes that City Council tentatively approved for staff to move forward with the project and then it was placed into the budget but that she would need to go back to that Council meeting and see what was on the agenda.

Mayor Riley then asked the members of City Council if there was a second to Council Member Martinez’ motion.

Council Member David Jordan said he would like to just table this issue until we have properly discussed it with the citizens. “How do we do that?” City Attorney Frederick said we need to complete the motion. Mayor Riley added that we needed to see if there was a second to the motion and if not it would die and then Council Member Jordan could make a new motion.

Council Member David Edwards seconded Council Member Benny Martinez’ motion he said because there is just too much of an uproar in the community against this.

Mayor Riley asked for a roll call vote on the motion made by Council Member Benny Martinez and seconded by Council Member David Edwards to deny the proposal to construct a pavilion on the vacant lot next to the Leon Valley Swimming Pool.

City Manager Kuenstler informed the Mayor and City Council that City Secretary Passailaigue had just given her the record vote from June 20, 2017 City Council meeting which read:

Public Works Director Melinda Moritz presented this item for discussion and possible approval of the construction of a 30' x 50' pavilion on the vacant lot at the corner of Peachtree and Poss Roads.

A motion was made by Council Member Monica Alcocer and seconded by Council Member Belinda Ealy to approve as presented.

The motion passed unanimously.

City Attorney Frederick said this was a dilemma for her because City Council has already approved this.

Council Member David Edwards motioned to reconsider the action. Council Member Edwards was stopped by Mayor Riley and City Attorney Frederick who told him that could not be done.

Council Member Martinez said he would rescind his motion and let Council Member Edwards make a new motion.

Council Member Edwards motioned to reconsider previous action to approve the placement and operation of a pavilion on the vacant lot next to the Leon Valley Swimming Pool. City Attorney Frederick informed Council that that was not what was approved last time. Council Member David Edwards rescinded this motion.

Council Member Edwards tried again with a new motion to reconsider the previously approved action to place and operate a new pavilion at CB 4432C Block 5 Lot SE IRRG 150.38FT OF 10 ARB 10A, also known as 6600 Strawflower, and Located at the Corner of Peachtree and Poss Roads. City Attorney Frederick asked that Council Member Edwards rescind that motion as well. Council Member David Edwards rescinded this motion.

Council Member David Edwards motioned that we reconsider the possible approval of the construction of a 30' x 50' pavilion on the vacant lot at the corner of Peachtree and Poss Roads. Council Member Benny Martinez seconded the motion.

Council Member Monica Alcocer called for a Point of Clarification saying that if we are making a motion on an something that is not on the agenda, how is that possible. City Attorney thanked Council Member Alcocer and said she had not thought about that but that Council was correct and that motion could not be made either. City Attorney Frederick told Council they needed to come back on the reconsideration of the prior approval.

Council Member David Edwards rescinded this motion.

Council Member David Jordan motioned to table the item and have a workshop with the community being included, in reference of “what is the best proper use for that location and pavilion on Peachtree by the swimming pool.” Council Member David Edwards seconded the motion.

Council Member Benny Martinez said he could not see why this item needed to be tabled. “The citizens have already spoken up. This is a public hearing tonight. We received public input. What more proof do we need? We need to listen to our citizens and cancel this project.” Mayor Riley informed him that it was not on the agenda to “cancel the project”.

City Attorney Frederick informed Council that the project had already been approved and tonight is just to decide the placement and operation.

Council Member David Jordan said that is why this needs to be tabled because there are many opinions and it needs to be discussed more.

Mayor Riley asked for a vote which was unanimously approved.

Discussion