January Meeting Notes
Ellendale Neighborhood Association Meeting Notes, Monday January 14, 2019
Meeting started at 7:04pm.
Review of By-Laws
Matt reminded the group that the purpose of these general meetings is “to inform and advise its members and the general public in matters pertaining to the general welfare of the neighborhood and community.” There remains an expectation that guest speakers and other visitors will be treated with respect. Matt also reminded everyone that ENA is a guest at Abbott EMS, and our conduct must also be respectful to the business & its employees as if we want to continue meeting here.
Matt reminded everyone that Members-in-Good-Standing are defined as voting-eligible members who are current on their ENA dues ($6 per year for individual resident member; $24 per year for business membership).
Approval of November Meeting Notes, motion by Robert Morrrisey, second by Linda Boyd-Shell. Minutes approved by members.
Alderman Scott Ogilvie (24th Ward)
Crosswalk at Southwest Ave and Abbott will be brought up to ADA standards including more paint, new curbs, and possibly also better signage.
The city will be refinishing the sidewalk on Manchester near Majorette event venue (7150 Manchester, located in Ellendale).
A new house will be constructed at 3325 Commonwealth which is currently a vacant lot.
Aldermanic forum & debate on Wednesday, January 16th at Pat Connolly Tavern (6400 Oakland) at 7pm. All five candidates are confirmed to be there. See below.
The year-end crime stats for Ellendale have been level compared to last year. Overall the crime rate is down fifty to sixty percent from six years ago.
Q: Resident concerned about the amount of parking available with the Wilkinson School redevelopment project. Resident believes parking will be about 1 spot per unit. Concerned that this will not be sufficient.
A: Matt Sisul – The plans presented by developer (Advantes Group) at November’s ENA meeting included 58 parking spaces for the 37 apartment units planned for the former school building. Additionally, a revision to the concept discussed at that meeting include no longer pursuing plans to include construction of a new building on the current parking lot area. This change will therefore eliminate the 8 apartment units previously planned for this structure and also increase the number of parking spaces available on-site. Additionally, if Advantes Group now plans a leasing office inside the former school building, this will also potentially reduce the number of apartment units on site. So while the final ratio of parking spaces to apartment units is not yet known, it is expected to be around 2 spaces per unit. For comparison only, plan exam review only requires 0.9 spaces per unit. This development plan will far exceed City minimum parking space requirements.
A: Matt Sisul – Due to current zoning of the property (A – single family residential) a variance will be needed for the project. ENA will have an opportunity to offer conditions to the Board of Adjustment to be attached to any City approval of the development plan. ENA has a housing committee that will make recommendations to membership on what these conditions should be. These will be presented at an upcoming general meeting, but all concerns may be forwarded either to the committee chairperson (see below) or to Matt Sisul so that they may be included with this list of conditions for this development effort.
Q: Is there any chance that the new apartments would rent for less than market value?
A: Scott Ogilvie – There is no legal guarantee that the units will sell for market value. However, the maximum subsidy rents landlords are allowed to charge (for example, Section 8 program) are much lower than the rent amounts Advantes Group projects & plans. These apartments are planned as high-end market rate units. For comparison, similar projects by Advantes Group include Lafayette School (Soulard) and Sherman School (Shaw).
Q: Will there be minority and union contractors involve in construction of the project?
A: Scott Ogilvie – Yes, the city has robust approach to hiring union and minority contractors, particularly when incentives such as tax abatement are involved in the project financing.
Q: Will MSD have to sign off on a storm water plan for the redevelopment.
A: Scott Ogilvie – Yes, all development plans of this scale are required to have a storm water management plan.
Q: Explain the local tax incentives planned for Wilkinson School Project.
A: Scott Ogilvie – Building is now officially on the National Registry of Historic Places, which means it is eligible for state historic rehab tax credits. Developer has also requested tax abatement, if qualified, which will be determined by the return on the investment of the project. Reminder that the City no longer offers 100% tax abatement. More likely to be around 80%. Also, SLPS was not paying taxes for the site because it was a public entity & therefore exempt. Because tax abatement does not mean tax-free, the new owner will still be paying more in real estate taxes than SLPS.
Matt Sisul also confirmed with Scott Ogilvie that Advantes Group officially closed on the project site in mid-December.
Q: Where will guest parking be located? Arsenal is already tight, so how will we fit more cars on the street and still be safe?
A: Scott Ogilvie – He expects guests will access and park from Canterbury. This is where the main doors to the apartment building will be located. Additionally, a majority of the units are one bedroom with single-occupancy expected. The previously discussed 2-to-1 ratio of parking spaces to units should be more than sufficient.
A: Matt Sisul – Because Canterbury Ave is so wide, we also can request angled parking there. This will increase the number of on-street parking spaces available on Canterbury, thus increasing the likelihood that guests will park here and less likely on Arsenal St.
Q: What will the mailing address for the apartment units be?
A: Not sure at this time. Post Office will determine this.
Q: City Street light on Fern Ave is extremely bright and resident is wondering if it could be looked at and possibly downsized.
A: Scott Ogilvie – City lights are not always the same and a middle ground between regarding brightness and visibility. Ogilvie obtained residents contact and will consider lowering the output of the existing light.
KaJauna Thomas (NSO, 24th Ward)
Working on obtaining a cut list for properties that need to be trimmed, particularly those vacant lots in the neighborhood.
Captain Mike Deeba, Officer Don Veile (2nd District)
Not present; 2nd District watch commander and supervisor were present, but provided no report
Special Guests – Matt Sisul reminded everyone that ENA is not a political organization and will not be making any endorsements for candidates on the upcoming municipal elections (March primary, April general). However, those 24th Ward aldermanic candidates present were each allotted a maximum of 5 minutes introduce themselves and briefly speak to the meeting. Speaking order was determined by arrival of each candidate to the meeting.
Lorie Cavin, Aldermanic Candidate for 24th Ward
Danny Sample, Aldermanic Candidate for 24th Ward
Brett Narayan, Aldermanic Candidate for 24th Ward
Tom Bauer, Aldermanic Candidates for 24th Ward
Treasurer’s Report (Matt Sisul, for Joe Nea)
Update on new bank account with US Bank. Former account with Citizens National Bank was closed, per November ENA meeting activities.
Current balance: $ 439.46
Housing Committee Update (Matt Sisul)
Welcome new chairperson: Linda Boyd-Shell
New meeting announcement signs are needed. Matt Sisul motion to purchase up to 10 signs (24”x18”), not to exceed $150. Second by Linda Boyd-Shell. Action approved by members.
24th Ward Alderman Candidate Forum (Matt Sisul)
Wednesday, January 16: doors at 6:30pm; event at 7pm held at Pat Connolly Tavern (6400 Oakland Avenue). All residents of Ellendale encouraged to attend.
24th Ward All-Neighborhood Meeting (Matt Sisul, Jacqi Kamp)
Matt Sisul recognized Steven Basinger, President of Cheltenham Neighborhood Association, in attendance. Matt thanked Steven for organizing a recent meeting for board members of neighborhood associations in the 24th Ward. It was very productive and helpful to be working with each other for the ward as a whole. It will be beneficial to start having insight from one another, as we each have different guests & speakers at our meetings. And also looking forward to ward-wide open communication in the future.
Volunteers needed to distribute meeting reminder flyers in March. Interested persons should contact either Matt Sisul or Jacqi Kamp.
New Ellendale Residents’ Welcome Card (Barry Marquart)
ENA is planning on designing a Welcome Card to be distributed to new residents in the neighborhood.
Easter Egg Hunt (Jacqi Kamp)
Currently planning a combined Easter Egg Hunt with Clayton-Tamm and Franz Park neighborhood associations. Date is to-be-determined. More information will be available on the ENA social media sites (website, Facebook, NextDoor). Volunteers are needed to help work event. Candy donations are needed. And ENA families are invited to participate. Contact Jacqi for more information.
Steve Cavin also invited all Ellendale families to participate in the Clifton Heights Easter Egg Hunt, held on the Saturday before Easter Sunday at 1pm.
2019 Dues start January (Matt Sisul)
Reminder that ENA dues must be current to be considered a member-in-good standing ($6 per year for individual resident member; $24 per year for business membership)
Volunteers needed for ENA pollinator garden (Matt Sisul)
Help needed to water & weed ENA garden located at the north-end of Ellendale Ave, adjacent to stairs leading to Southwest Ave. Matt thanked Maria Gray (not present) for providing access to water for garden volunteers last year. Matt asked Scott Ogilvie for assistance with obtaining a fire hydrant key for 2019 garden maintenance.
Resident concerned about drug activity at 2777 Hermitage.
Matt Sisul has been in contact with SLMPD detectives. Investigation is currently underway and problem hopefully will be resolved soon.
KaJauna Thomas encouraged residents to call the non-emergency number anytime you have a concern. Continue to call 911 for all emergencies.
Resident concerned about homeless activity and suspected drug use in Slay Park, especially under the Arsenal St bridge
Matt Sisul has been working with City’s homelessness prevention outreach so that these individuals have an opportunity to receive the help & aid they need. Also has been working with SLMPD to increase patrols at times & locations of reported suspected drug sales activity. Slay Park and other McCausland intersections (at Southwest Ave and at Manchester Ave) are currently under SLMPD watch. Residents encouraged to call 911 for immediate police response whenever illegal activities are occurring.
KaJauna Thomas reminded everyone not to use their home address when calling 911 to report these activities. Use address or cross-streets when reporting locations. Addresses of properties are used for preparing nuisance actions against property owners, so be sure to only use addresses to report actual locations of crimes and other illegal activities.
Motion to adjourn made by Linda Boyd-Shell. Second by Irene Jones. Meeting adjourned at 8:17pm.