June 12, 2019 DRB Minutes

June 26, 2019

SOUTH HERO DEVELOPMENT REVIEW BOARD                                            June 12, 2019


Members Present:    Tim Maxham (Chair); Doug Patterson (Vice Chair); Ross Brown; Sherry Corbin; Nate Hayward; Gareth Hunt; Liza Kilcoyne

Others Present:          Martha Taylor-Varney (Zoning Administrator); Jim Brightwell (Alternate & Clerk)

Members Absent:      None

Public Present:          Gammal, Michele; Gammal, Mike; Heinzer, Quentin; Oullette, Thomas; Russell, Richard; Smith, Israel; Velasquez, Peter

Call to Order:              Meeting was called to order by T. Maxham at 7:01 p.m.

Changes to Agenda:   None

Public Input:               None


Hearing:                      19-61-PI013 (Russell — Change in Conditional Use due to reduction in non-conformity)

  1. Maxham opened the hearing at 7:03 p.m.

Notice & Oath

  1. Patterson read the hearing warning. T. Maxham administered the oath to the attending members of the public.

Appearing on behalf of the applicant:

  • Richard Russell, co-owner with Thomas Oullette
  • Israel Smith & Quentin Heinzer of Smith Buckley Architects, Burlington

Statement of Mr. Smith:

Mr. Russell is renovating a 4-bedroom 3-bath camp on Providence Island into a proposed 2-bedroom 2-bath configuration. The resultant configuration will reduce nonconformity to the lake setback. Mr. Smith presented a walkthrough of the plans that depicted the reduction in non-conformity, and represented that with the changes, the majority of the new structure will be outside of the setback. The existing encroaching space is 1740 square feet, reduced to 1420 in the proposed plan. The existing roof height is 22’4”; the proposed flat roof is 25’6”.

  1. Maxham asked if the applicant will be demolishing the existing structure. Mr. Smith said yes.
  2. Maxham asked if the applicant was saving anything. Mr. Smith said that the structural engineer said that it wasn’t worth it – it would be less expensive to build new. T. Maxham asked why the new structure could not be built in an area of the property that would avoid encroachment on the lake setback. Mr. Smith said that they were looking to build in the already cleared area, that it would be a considerable disturbance to the heavily-forested site to clear a new site on the parcel.
  3. Kilcoyne asked if the applicant was proposing a second floor. Mr. Smith said no, there is only one floor.
  4. Maxham asked what the distance in feet was into the setback area. Quentin Heinzer estimated about 35’.
  5. Corbin asked M. Taylor-Varney if the islands were all Shoreland district. M. Taylor-Varney said that the 500’ from the water was Shoreland; the center of the island was Rural—Residential. S. Corbin asked if construction on the islands automatically triggered conditional use. M. Taylor-Varney said that the same regulations applied everywhere, and that if the applicant had stayed on the same footprint he would not need a change in conditional use. Otherwise, the situation falls under the Town’s regulations for change in conditional use due to reduction in nonconformity.
  6. Taylor-Varney said that the island is completely wooded; if you move the site of the house you would be clearing a heavily wooded area.
  7. Maxham asked what the elevation of the building site is. I. Smith answered that the average grade of the building site is 113’9”, and that the floor level of the current and proposed buildings are the same.
  8. Corbin asked if the deck was included in the calculation of average grade. Q. Heinzen said yes. S. Corbin asked if only the house was included in the average grade calculation, would it be higher or lower. Q. Heinzen said it would the higher.
  9. Kilcoyne observed that the setbacks reflect Providence Island Association setbacks as well as state setbacks.
  10. Maxham observed that on the plans that while the Town setback was 25’, the association setback was 35’, and that the applicant only had about 10’ that they could move the building back before they were encroaching on the zoning setback, there was almost no distance to the community setback, and elsewhere the site was heavily wooded. I. Smith agreed and said that the site was heavily constrained.

The Board examined photographs of the site and agreed that moving the building site elsewhere would involve considerable clearing and grading.

  1. Maxham closed hearing at 7:36.


Hearing:                      19-62-RT456 (Keeler Bay Associates – Conditional Use and Site Plan Review for a Food Truck)

Hearing Notes

  1. Maxham opened the hearing at 7:40 p.m.
  2. Patterson read the hearing warning. T. Maxham administered the oath to the attending members of the public.

Appearing on behalf of the applicant:

Mike Gammal, Michele Gammal

Statement of Mike & Michele Gammal

Mike Gammal said that he was present on behalf of Keeler Bay Associates, an entity owned by himself and his wife Michele. Mr. Gammal said he was looking to service the need for a fast casual restaurant on the island, particularly for BBQ, via a food truck. He said that he would be recruiting a 3rd-party vendor to provide the food truck on his property. The food truck would be located on the “old vegetable field” along route 2 just north of the entrance to Keeler Bay Campground & Marina.

  1. Corbin asked if the property was going to be accessed from the right –of-way and whether the right of way had an existing road cut. Mike Gammal said that the property was going to be accessed from the right-of-way, which did have a road cut.
  2. Maxham asked what communications had transpired with VTRANS to-date. Mike Gammal said that with the expansion of the campground, they had to expand the entrance, pave an apron, and limit the access point to Route 2 to two lanes. He said that he has a letter of intent for VTRANS for that entrance.
  3. Maxham asked if the flagpole had been moved.   Mike Gammal said that the flagpole had been moved.
  4. Maxham asked how power and water would be used at the site. Mike Gammal said that based on his conversation with prospective vendors, the truck would have its own fresh water and haul out its grey water daily.
  5. Maxham asked if the truck would run a generator or have a power hookup. Mike Gammal said that the truck would either have a generator, or the power company would run a temporary pole to service the location.
  6. Maxham said that while the Town doesn’t have any specific regulations regarding a food truck, he would suggest the applicant consider having a Portolet on-site with appropriate screening from U.S. Route 2. Mike Gammal said that wasn’t on the site plan but was in general agreement with the suggestion.
  7. Maxham suggested that the applicant consider revising the proposed hours of operation to reflect likely operating hours during long daylight hours of the summer, in order to avoid returning to the Board for a modification of the condition.
  8. Maxham said that while VTRANS regulated access to Route 2, there were no physical barriers to patrons just driving from the parking area directly onto Route 2, and that the applicant might want should consider some type of attractive barrier along Route 2 to prevent vehicular access other than through the designated entrance/exit.
  9. Maxham asked if the applicant was planning to gravel the parking area. Mike Gammal said that he was planning to gravel the area as needed for parking. He noted he has a 30,000 square foot area but would only gravel a portion of that as needed.
  10. Hayward asked about the replacement wastewater field under gravel parking area. Mike Gamal said that he was working with DEC to establish alternative locations for the replacement field, and J. Buermann was working to relocate it.
  11. Kilcoyne asked where the trash would be located. Mike Gammal said that his current plan was to put the trash along the driveway on the north side of the property for easy pickup. The food truck will also be along the north end of the lot. The trash would be screened by a stockade fence.
  12. Maxham opened the hearing to questions or comments from the public.

Peter Velasquez asked the applicant to consider esthetics as the development will be adjacent to his residence.

Peter Velasquez asked what type of clientele was expected. Mike Gammal said that it would be for people from the marina and the general public of the sort who currently go to Kims, which has announced that it is closing.

  1. Taylor-Varney asked what the timeframe was. Mike Gammal said that it depended on which vendor he was able to recruit, and he was not working against a deadline for this season.
  2. Taylor-Varney asked for a copy of the VTRANS Letter of Intent.
  3. Hunt made a motion that the site plan was complete for review. The motion was seconded by L. Kilcoyne and passed by acclaim.
  4. Maxham asked if there was going to be outside lighting. Mike Gammal said only on the vendor’s truck, and would be downward facing. They would be operating only during daytime hours. Michele Gammal asked that the application be amended to reflect opening hours until 10:00 p.m. to accommodate closing activities on late summer evenings

The hearing was closed at 8:08 p.m. by T. Maxham.


Review of Minutes

  1. Patterson moved to accept the minutes of May 22, 2019 as corrected. R. Brown seconded the motion, which passed by acclamation.

Administrator’s Report

The Administrator’s Report was delivered by Martha Taylor-Varney (Zoning Administrator).

  • June 26th will be deliberative only (no hearings) due to Board member recusals and scheduling conflicts.
  • Martha will coordinate schedules and set dates for subsequent hearings.


  1. Corbin moved to adjourn the business meeting and move to deliberative session; the motion was seconded by D. Patterson and carried by acclamation at 8:35 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,


James G. Brightwell

Clerk for S. Hero Development Review Board


Signed: ____________________________________________ Date: __________________

                        For the Development Review Board

These minutes are unofficial until approved at the next regularly-scheduled meeting. All motions were unanimous unless otherwise indicated.

Categories: DRB, DRB minutes

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