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Steve Schmidt

City of Northfield
Mr. Dan Olson, Planner
801 Washington St.
Northfield, MN 55057

Dear Dan,

The following are suggestion and changes that I believe need to be made to the LDR.
This document is too critical to the long-term development and growth of Northfield to
rush to get it done without reviewing all concerns. I apologize for the lateness of these
questions but with being out of town for work most of January- March it made it difficult
to stay on top of the process. If you could comment on my concerns I would appreciate it.
I would also like to have this circulated to the members of the committee because they
may have some of the same concerns I have after they have had an opportunity to review
my comments.

In reviewing the newly presented documents I noticed the lines are not numbered like the
previous document. So I will be using the category and item numbers to reference my

2.9.4 Bed & Breakfasts. (E.) states no more the 4- guest rooms. This seems very low to
try and make it profitable. I would think ten would be the high end for the number of
rooms. The last sentence is a good one to keep.

2.9.6 Day Care facilities: (b) this requires that the dropping off of children must be done
in the driveway. I understand why and the safety of this but I don’t believe this should be
in the LDR. Day care licensing and smart parents should be regulating this not this

2.11.4 Construction Dumpster: Here we are trying to regulate where dumpsters should be
placed. The construction industry needs to have the ability to use the public ROW due to
the small size of lots in Northfield
(1.) This states placing it on the side yard. This could create major problems due to
most of the side yard set backs are 8’. This is not practical a location.
This needs to state that when ever possible place the dumpster on rear yard of private
property away from adjoining lots.
It maybe more practical to place a time limit on the dumpster. It may remain on site
during construction and up to 15 days prior to and after construction. If construction is
halted for any reason the 15-day rule applies.

Table 3.2-1 Residential District Site Development Standards:

Under R1-B: This states that the front yard set back maybe 20’ I think this is okay except
at the front of the garage. If you park a truck in the driveway it will block the sidewalk. I
think this should read. If the front of the house is set back at a 20’ the garage front must
be a minimum of 25’or 30’ setback.
Max Lot Depth: under R1-B: States the maximum may only be 150’ deep. I don’t
believe this needs to be there. There are many times you have an odd shaped lot at a
corner or curve that ends up being 150’ – 200’ deep. This will be self-regulated by
density requirements.
Under R1-B lot width: The 50’-75’ is to narrow, this needs to be increased to 90’ or even
100’. When lots occur on curved streets you will have wider fronts lines and narrower
rear lines. Most lots today should have at least 80’ width.
Under R1-B two family dwelling lot width. This should be increased to at least 100’.
Three family dwelling width should increase to 125'.

Last item on the chart under R1-B states that all floors must be 18” above the sidewalk.
This won’t work if you want to create a handicap accessible area. The floor heights are
typically set by the grade around the house. A better way to state this is that floor heights
must comply with the building code.

3.2.3 C2-B District site development standard:

Lot size and width seems too large.
(B.) Lot width minimum at 60’ width is very wide, a business condo like The Crossings
have zero lot lines and then you would want a 20’ lot width.

3.3.2 –2 (e) (iii & iv) seasonal sales display areas in off street parking.
This section won’t allow a store to reduce the number of parking stalls below standards
when using a temporary structure. This seems a bit restrictive for such a short period of
time. This could force a business to increase the parking lot and create more hard surface.
Not a good thing. Or the business looses sales and has to close. Not a good thing.

3.3.4 (L) Vacant buildings. Under the glass sections it states you must keep glass in the
openings. I know why this is here but it’s hard to comply when the windows keep getting
broken out and the owner wants to put plywood in place to cover the openings.
Would the installation of wire mesh be allowed? Something needs to be permitted to
protect the glass that’s being required.

3.4.4 & 3.4.5 These seem to have a lot of controls built into them. Has Jay Jasnoch
commented on these? Will all of these control make all the buildings look alike?

3.6.4 5: Tree & shrub size listed here seems too large. A 2.5” tree is very expensive and
it most cases a 2” tree after 3-4 years is the same size as the 2.5” and there is
greater failure rate w/ the 2.5”. After the tree dies they don’t get replaced. The
shrub size of 18” tall is too large also 12” shrub is fine. If you plant to large of a
shrub they out grow the planting area to quickly.
It also describes ground cover to be planted that will reach 75% of its size in the first
year. This will cause over grown beds in just a few years. It could state 75% growth at
three years. When these beds get over grown that doesn’t look good either.
3.6.5 E. 1. Max amount of paving on single family at 30% is to low. This needs to be
35%-38% . With a three car garage you need the extra width.

4. This parking reg is confusing and too restrictive. I read this as I can’t have
my son park his car on the side of my house during the winter when he can’t park on the
street. Or I will have all three of my kid’s park in the street in the summer because I can’t
have them parking in the paved area I have on the side of my house. This is not very
clear. It seems like it’s saying you can only park in front or on the side which has the
street if your on a corner lot. Interior lots no parking on the side of your garage.

3.6.6 Tree inventory. This section needs to address the scenario where trees need to be
removed to allow for grade changes during development grading. It also needs to
address trees that are existing that the city does allow or want planted in the city.
Box elder, buckthorn etc. I think we are missing appendix A to address this

3.6.14 Does this apply to the city of Northfield also? They are a great offender of this.

3.7.5 (B.) With this exemption could I install an over sized sign with my name on it
carved in stone for a new building? This seems a little undefined. Should it say that these
need to be approved by staff or be part of the design review since it’s part of the building.

3.7.5 (D.) Vehicle sign, this doesn’t seem appropriate in the LDR, it should be
eliminated. The Dominos car can’t have it’s sign so customers will know who’s
in their driveway. Not a good thing.

3.8.3 (E.) This states that I can’t have my car in my driveway with a for sale sign on it.
This is very restrictive and needs to be removed or have a time frame added. No more
then 30 days. Shouldn’t this be in city ordinance not in the LDR?

3.8.5 Parking table 3.8-1 some of these need to be revisited. Most require what I think
is too much parking. A nursing home requires 1 space for every 2 beds, do these
residents drive that they need the spaces?
Medical or dental seems to low 5 space for every 1000 SF.
I know when we built Heritage Dental they want and need more parking but couldn’t
have it.
Banquet halls, bars, seem high with 1 space for every 2 people.
There maybe more but I’m not familiar with all of these business.

Parking table 3.8-2 This is too restrictive: in the case where you may own two adjoining
lots, use one for the building and the other for the parking. In this case you wouldn’t want
any setback to try and maximize the parking spaces.
3.9 B 2. Sidewalks on both sides of local streets. This is a big change. I believe this is
not needed. In our new developments the homeowners have no complaints with the
sidewalk on one side. This gives buyers the option, sidewalk or no sidewalk on
their lot. This needs to be changed. Everyone pays for the sidewalk; the cost gets
divided among all of the lots.
B-3 should also be deleted if the above is changed.
3.10 D. This states the sidewalk must be 7’ from back of curb. If the boulevard is
narrower then 12’ you can’t get the 7’, should this be written to say that in
boulevards less then 12’ you must have city approval? Boulevards will get smaller
as the lots get smaller.

3.10.4 #2 This specs installing a Cat #5 wire for phone or TV. This maybe outdated
before this gets published. It could read install the most modern or current cable?

3.10.4 C 1.
This states that the developer pays for all expenses the city may incur. This should also
address that the city will reimburse the sub divider all expenses associated with the
design, engineering and cost associated over sizing of pipes for future expansion.

#2. This states the city at its sole discretion may choose to install the improvements. This
seems to one sided. The city needs to provide cause when this would apply.

#3. This is very restrictive. The developer needs to have the right to proceed with site
prep and grading after preliminary plat. Our construction season is to short to have to
wait until final plat. THIS NEEDS TO BE CHANGED.

E. #2 Engineer can grant reduction in guarantee in section what? It would be good to

know this?

The last portion of this section deals with the financial workings of development. If this is
accepted it will eliminate the small developer/builder that has built Northfield and keep
Northfield’s growth under control. These small developers are typically easier to work
with and care about Northfield because they live here. This section needs more discussion
with the business it impacts.

H: Warranty: The erosion control warranty should be reduced to two years. Vegetation
will be established with in two years. Beside the developer has the SWPP permit that
must be maintained until the last lot is sold.

3.11.3 A-2 This description is very narrow. We maybe entering a time when some new
creative street layouts will becoming along to restart housing and development. The
terms grid pattern or modified grid are fine but we should add, acceptable variation or

3.11.3 A-3 How can the sentence that even a street built to city standards may not be
accepted. I can’t believe you can have that sentence in this without some back up.
3.11.3-10 Alleys/privates streets
(ii) must be made from concrete. This needs to be changed to be the same as streets there
is no reason that these need to be more expensive and made differently then a city street.

3.11-3 Street width table: I don’t know for sure but the street widths listed here appear to
be wider then what our current code calls for. If so why are we going back to this
when we are trying to make more compact developments and reduce the size of
streets to control traffic and reduce urban sprawl.

3.11.3 Street surface: in the sentence when it states that the portion outside of the street
surface shall be sodded please add or vegetation that is accepted by the city. There maybe
an area where the developer or city may want to install plantings for a different street

3.11.4 street grading (b) is the number 5 % correct or should it be .05?

(c) is the number 7% correct or should it be .07 ?

3.11.4 ( c) This needs to have an added sentence that states any extra costs or costs
associated with pipe over sizing for future development shall be paid to the
developer by the city and assess to the future developed site.
3.11.5 (d) add after cat 5 wire or most up to date wire.

3.11.6 (F) 4. will not accept land with more then a 12% slope. I think this should be
removed. The city has the option to accept or deny what will be submitted.
There maybe a special feature that would be a great asset for a park for hiking,
biking, climbing that we don’t know about, why eliminate now? River or
creek shore land could be more then 12%.

3.13.1 A. 1. WS-O I would like to see the set backs in the downtown area reduced to
what reflects what our buildings actually are. I do believe the city has the right
with in the city to set these set backs. Set backs would be 20’ –50’ depending on
the area.

Thanks for reviewing this Dan.

Call or e-mail if you have questions.

Steve Schmidt
Page 1 of 3
Cliff Clark

Tracy Davis

From: Clifford E. Clark, Jr. []

Sent: Monday, May 04, 2009 9:34 PM
To: Tracy Davis
Cc: Mike Meehan;; Erik Hong; Daniel Jones; Darin Pavek; William Ostrem; Lynn
Bruns; Jay Jasnoch; Leota Goodney; Steven Pahs; Steve Schmidt; William (Pepe) Kryzda; David
Van Wylen; Bruce Anderson; Peter Schmelzer;
Subject: Re: Interesting link, and info for Friday's LUAG meeting

Hello everyone:
Following up on Tracy's suggestion, here's a copy of the note that I sent to Dan earlier on typos and
other inconsistencies.

April 21, 2009

Mr. Dan Olsen

City Planning Office
Northfield City Hall
Northfield, Mn 55057

Dear Dan:

Given the fact that the Advisory Committee has a limited time to review the 272 pages of the draft of
the Northfield, Minnesota, Land Development Code, I am sending my comments on places where the
code is unclear and on typos in this letter. Please circulate it to the other members of the committee.
My comments are listed by code section:

2.4.2, A 2 The sentence refers to the “framework map” but it should be changed to the actual map title
which should read “Official Zoning Map”.

2.4.2.B, 1 ( b) To be consistent and clear, in the first sentence which reads “For the purpose of this
section, the Perimeter Transition Area (PTA) shall be defined as a 300-foot wide area at the boundaries
of the CD-S zone district that are not adjacent to the CD-S district” would be clearer if it read “… shall
be defined as any place within the CDS district that is within 300 feet of any boundary.”
In the third section in this section, the term “the area” at the end of the sentence would be clearer if
the area were specified. I would suggest that it read “the area owned by the college adjacent to the right
of way” “may develop consistent with the IDA standards.”

2.4.2 B (2)(d)
Additional Design Standards, (d) Athletic field lighting. The phrases “not be exempt” and “may not
utilize the exemption” do not make sense. How can the college not utilize the exemption if it is not
exempt in the first place? So the intention of this sentence is not clear.

2.4.2 C (4) typo? This sentence does not make sense unless the phrase “is required” is deleted. The

Page 2 of 3

sentence, as corrected, should read: “If a traffic and stormwater management plan is not completed
during the rezoning process, such plans shall be required as part of any future site plan approval for a
new structure.”

2.11.4, G Temporary Structures, What does the word “institutional” mean in the phrase “temporary
structures serving public or institutional uses . . .” ?

3.1.5,A (2) The term “other projections” in the phrase “Eaves and other projections” is not clear. Does
it mean eves and other “roof” projections?

3.5.2 (A) Applicability To be consistent here, since these standards apply to R1-B districts, they should
also apply to proposed infill development or redevelopment in the PTA of the CD-S (in the Perimeter
Transition Area of the College Development Zone).

4.8.2 Violations and Penalties. This section is not clear. The penalty for a first violation is “a fourth
degree misdemeanor” and the penalty for subsequent violations is the same. Shouldn’t someone who
violates the code multiple times be subject to stronger penalties if he or she continues to do so? If
repeated abuse brings no harsher penalties, scofflaws with continue to violate the code.

5.3.5 Neighborhood meetings This section places the reporting responsibility on the
applicant. Should the applicant not notify the neighbors, the city planner should have the
responsibility to notify them so that they can learn about the intended development project.

5.4.5 (B) This section refers to “any city recognized neighborhood associations”. Is the any place in the
code that specifies how a neighborhood association get recognized by the city?

5.5.3 (i) “Multi-family buildings with eight or more units.” Wouldn’t this phrase be more accurate if it
read “residential buildings with eight or more units” because the building could house no families and
only single persons?

5.5.9 (D) (2) This sentence would be clearer if it read “The following standards shall be ‘applied’ …
rather than “shall be considered” since the former meaning seems to be what is intended.

5.5.9 (D) (2) (j) To be consistent, this should read “In residential districts ‘and in Perimeter Transition
Areas of College Development Zones’” , “the use of a similar height, building orientation . . . .” The
PTA and CD-S need to be referenced here as well.

In the last section on definitions, it would be helpful in “Build to Line” definition to clarify the
relationship of build to lines and setbacks. It seems that ‘Build to lines’ refer to the relationship of the
building to the front and back lot lines while the setbacks can also reference the distance of the building
from the side lot lines. Or is that not accurate?

Typo (FAA) is the Federal Aviation Administration, not the Federal Aeronautical Administration.

Cliff Clark

Clifford E. Clark, Jr.
Professor of History &
M.A. & A.D. Hulings Professor of American Studies

Alice Thomas

Comments on Regulation draft 3-31-09 – Alice Thomas

Note: page numbers refer to hard copy version and not version on the web

Below are some questions/comments about specific language in the current version.
There are, however, three areas of general concern: 1) the diminished role of
neighborhood input in the process (an important aspect of any design purporting to be
related to form-based - as I understand the literature that has been provided to us), 2) an
extremely limited role of a design professional in providing input to guide us in the goal
of insuring compatibility, 3) lack of clarity regarding the neighborhood serving
commercial centers and 4) lack of clarity/lack of discussion about the Permitted Principal
Uses chart on p. 22-25.

p. 6 2.1.4 (F) Why shouldn’t the Official Zoning Map be referenced as it is in (C)

p.11 2.3.5 (B) Limit of 2,500 ft was eliminated – is still unclear how big such a
structure should be – the size of a multi family structure?

p. 14 (B) (1) (b) What is the meaning of the phrase, “at the boundaries of the CD-S
zoning district that are not adjacent to a CD-S district”?

The neighborhood compatibility and collaborative planning in the 300 ft. buffer
has been removed. Why? Where is any statement about compatibility with the

p. 15 (3) Why not a Type 4 that requires a neighborhood meeting?

p. 15 2.4.3 The neighborhood compatibility and collaborative planning has been

removed. Why?

p. 20 2.6.1 (C) I am still concerned about commercial centers in neighborhoods that

would be closer than 1 mile from our existing commercial centers. We are
making some existing businesses even more vulnerable than they already are.

p. 22 Table 2.7-1 Apparently I didn’t make my point clear previously. The response
didn’t address my concern that we are discriminating against R4 by not allowing
several uses that are given to R-1 for reasons I can’t imagine. I thought that when
I raised this at our advisory meeting that people agreed. I thought that this table
was going to be discussed “at a future meeting”. Is that meeting this Friday?

I have several other questions about the table that don’t relate to R4.

p. 38 2.9.2 (B) Part A makes it sound like we should worry about the distance between
adult use establishments but I don’t see that concern reflected in the Table on p.
p. 41 Is not obvious in the figure where the front yard is.

p. 49 2.9.12 (C) The illustrations certainly don’t show 40% of the front setback being
paved. We need to discuss this. It seems like a lot to me and if (D) is the case, is
it necessary?

p. 50 The exemptions given provide a lot of flexibility and some we may not want.

p. 59 (new J?) I still think we should require that accessory structures that are visible
from the street should be parallel with a street.

p. 61 Table. This indicates it is for “Accessory Uses and Structures” but the “uses” of
Day Care and Home Businesses are already in another table on p. 22-25 Why not
make this solely a “Structure” table. I thought that someplace I read that
businesses couldn’t be in an accessory building? I don’t see the logic for
including those two uses in this table.

p. 63 (4) My original comment was apparently not clear. I am talking about house
owners in an R-1 district who rent out the first story and use the second story as
their business (but they live elsewhere). This seems to violate the code (and I
think it should) but that isn’t clear here. See also p. 65 (3) (b) which relates to this
issue – seems to say – or should it say “residence BY OWNER”?

p. 64 (2) 70 feet sounds very high at a permitted use – would depend on many

p. 67 (H) (2) (new (c?) Outdoor furnaces shall use a permanent chimney that extends
15 ft. The furnaces shall be registered?? (to avoid “home construction” versions)
– other cities specify this.

p. 68 (I) The issue of what is “enclosed” may be a problem. If it is even partially

enclosed, e.g., 3 ft. wall around edge of porch, the appearance is imposing if it is
allowed to encroach into a setback. If totally open, that might be a different case
but any enclosure at all presents a very different image.

p. 83. The same issue identified on p. 68 above is reflected in Table 3.1-1 on p. 83 in

terms of projection into setbacks. In addition, I have a problem with any deck,
porch, stoop etc. projecting to a property line on the side or rear and within 5 ft. in
the front!

p. 85 (D) What if a tower were “habitable” but if “uninhabitable” and 25 ft. higher
would be okay? Needs rewording – maybe I am just missing something.

p. 87 Table needs some clarifications. Am I correct that R1-B footnote might say
“infill and redevelopment structures will be required to meet neighborhood
compatibility standards in 3.5”?
N1-B still needs to be clarified for the commercial center size, setback, etc since
this chart is referenced in the earlier text on p. 11.

p. 89 (B) What about houses that don’t “face” the street, i.e., whose entrance is on the
side? That was the point of my original comments. On p. 103 the text requires
that multi-family dwellings be oriented so that the primary entrance faces the
street but what about other residential houses?

p. 91 3.2.4 The response to my original comment indicated lots could share walls but is
that clear/encouraged in this code language?

p. 93 (9) If there is some concern about liability, could we require retaining walls as
shown on p. 94 in instances where staff determined a drop-off/incline was

p. 96 (e) (iv) Who is responsible for marking off the parking lot? This seems like
“overkill” for a temporary situation.

p. 99 3.3.4 Should some reference be made to a later section that talks about the
consequences of not adhering to these performance standards?

p. 110 (4) Is this asymmetric/dynamic roof compatible/consistent/complementary of the

“Northfield” look? Doesn’t look like any other illustration examples that have
been provided.

p. 111 3.5 Neighborhood compatibility standards. There are two main aspects that seem
to be sorely missing in this section given that we have some version of a form-
based framework.
1) Where is the neighborhood input that is so evident in all of the literature that
we have had about form-based? Appears it is now only in a Type 4 review – not
2) Where is the assurance that a design professional will assist in making
judgments about compatibility – to the DRC and eventually to the City
Council/Planning Commission? Appears to be no designation of the types of
applications that would be reviewed by such a professional.

p. 112 3.5.3 (A) I do think we need to require that accessory buildings be parallel to the
street which would not make them “exempt.

p. 114 (C) (c) If an applicant can’t demonstrate there is no parking alternative then
perhaps they should not develop a commercial building there. At the very least
should require a neighborhood meeting and a CUP.

p. 118 (E) The language here in 1-5 requires “pavement”. We need to be encouraging
permeable surfaces such as gravel, rock & stone pavers. What are we
saying/encouraging here?
p. 145 (D) Indicates that trucks can be parked only when loading, etc. I think we should
specify hours when this can be done in a residential neighborhood if we are going
to have commercial buildings.

p. 147 Table 3.8-1 I recognize the need to make sure there are adequate parking spaces,
but all of these are minimums – don’t we need to insert language about
maximums to encourage no more than absolutely necessary? I’m not an expert
in number needed but Steve’s comments made sense to me – particularly 1 space
for every 2 beds in a nursing/convalescent home. After parking and visiting my
mother-in-law for 7 years locally, this ratio doesn’t have validity for me.

p. 149 The above issue is evident on this page by allowing applicants to provide 10%
more as of right.

p. 156 (F) (6) Why limit the % of parking spaces that can use pervious surface? I would
think we shouldn’t set any limit for pervious. What is the issue here – durability?

p. 156 (G) The response to my original comment about the preferred curbing seemed to
indicate this section was going to be revised. It hasn’t been revised at all and I
think we need to reverse our preferences as presented in this section. See my
original comments.

p. 156 3.8.12 (B) (1) Why not mention pervious surfaces as options? Why, if a
homeowner wants to spend more money acting on their values by using pavers,
would we say they would be required to install a “driveway of similar properties
in the vicinity”? Maybe everyone else has concrete driveways – would they be
prevented from using pavers? Makes no sense.

p. 159 (D) (1) (g) I agree that times for loading and deliveries should be restricted when
located closer than 100 ft. from residences. But, I think we need to follow
through and specify what those hours should be.

p. 160 3.8.14 (1) (a) Why require “paved” driveway?

(2) (b) 30 feet in length sounds big

p. 176 Table 3.11-1 I don’t understand the minimum distance between driveways in
residential areas of 20 ft. This seems unduly prescriptive – is this a safety issue?

p. 179 Do the recent street projects in the older part of town meet these specifications?
Where are the major changes from past practice?

p. 201 3.13.1 Is it not possible to have more strict regulations than those of the state?

(A) (4) 30% sounds like a lot to me.

p. 209 4.7.3 (B) two “may”s in this statement make me very uncomfortable.
Not satisfactory for the code. See my earlier comments about the use of a design
professional. I think we need a list of application types where it would be
mandatory that such a professional were asked to review with the DRC. I also
would like to see that person’s comments forwarded to the City Council/Planning
Commission and at their request, asked to sit in on their meeting about the issue if
deemed appropriate by the body.

p. 210 4.8.2 Who can raise these legal issues?

p. 212 5.3.5 Can neighborhood groups request an official meeting with the applicant?

p. 220 Types 1-4 Procedures

I think the advisory committee needs to discuss 1) where and when neighborhood
meetings fit into these procedures and 2) when and how a design professional
should have input in the pre-application meeting. See my earlier comments about
the minor role that both seem to have in the current version.

p. 227 5.5.1 (1) (c) Wouldn’t infill and redevelopment need a compatibility review by a
design professional?

p. 235 5.5.6 (D) (1) 25% of the original floor area seems a lot.

p. 240 (2) (c) Will the statements from the design professional be forwarded to the
Planning Commission? Can the PC ask the professional to sit in on the meeting if
seems warranted?

(i) Sorry, but I don’t know what “Levels of Services” means – it isn’t in the
definition section and I can’t figure out what it means.

p. 245 (D) (2) (c) Will the deviations from the preliminary approved by the Planning
Commission be noted for the City Council?

p. 249 5.5.16 (C) (d) Will the statements from the design professional be forwarded to the
Planning Commission? Can the PC ask the professional to sit in on the meeting if
seems warranted?
Jay Jasnoch

Comments on LDC dated 3-31-09

Jay Jasnoch

General Comments: Articles 1-3

1. Can you demonstrate how this is really form based versus the last version of the Code? Itʼs
really more restrictive than what we had before because of the use table 2.7.2. I can see a few
bits and pieces but not enough to call it a form based code.

2. How will larger scale apartment projects be accounted for within the code as it is described?
(Senior units, market rate, etc.) As I read the code, I get the feeling that the scale of buildings in
new neighborhoods is intended to be smaller, 3-8 units per building. This is counter to what is
going on in that market. How will this fit into the requirements of the adopted rental code.
Spreading units in such a fashion is not currently economically feasible for construction cost and
in terms of long term management and maintenance. Can you clarify again what has happened
in the R2-B and R3-B districts, specifically “Applications for amendments to the Official Zoning
Map for the R3-B district shall be prohibited after the effective date of this code”?

3. How does section 3.5 relate to existing higher density zones? What happens if infill occurs on
those sites?

4.C2-B language overall is slanted to control larger site development at the expense of the
smaller more appropriate sized developments. The buffers are pretty large, parking screening is
a bit much, trash enclosure screening, etc. I think these requirements are going to push smaller
projects further from the street with larger setbacks and planted areas on larger sites. I would
look to intensify uses on the land we have available.

5. I would have liked to see the inclusion of more controls for C1-B infill, buffer and compatibility
issues. I see a lot of exemptions, with regard to parking, building guidelines, landscape
requirements, etc. Table 2.2-2 combines the old C-1 and C-2 into the C-1B. May need to
consider the impact of redevelopment projects within this newly expanded area.

6. Street widths as indicated by Table 3.11-3(LDC) in comparison to Comprehensive

Plan Street types as depicted in section 4.2(CP). This needs attention. Are street
widths and ROWʼs meeting the requirements of the CP? I would like to see other street width
options then the standard 60-66 ft ROW as proposed in the LDC.

Article 2 Comments:
Use Table 2.7.2 - Needs a lot of work. These are a few things I can see quickly.
• Many existing uses are not recognized.
• No real incentive for Floating Zone NC-F due to building size restrictions. May not make
economic sense without some more synergistic commercial uses clustered together of
more significant size.
• Too many uses require a Conditional Use permit or process. Not very pro-development or
business growth.
• Do PE uses allow new uses as well i.e, would a new drive thru business be permitted in
downtown core?
• Contractorʼs office not allowed in C2-B, but we have several.
• Conflicting use of terms Industrial & Commercial use when one use is defined under
industrial and allowed under commercial, but others are not or are restricted (conditional).
Lumberyards would be an example of this.
• Light assembly or Industrial uses not allowed in C2-B, but we have several.
• Mixed use is back? But only use by underlying base zone seems counter productive.
Could you explain a possible project this would work for? How would mixed use be
encouraged by the LDC as defined on p32? What is the process for developing? If we
want mixed use why did we take it out of the comp plan as a potential zone?
• No bus or transit stops downtown? Doesnʼt seem right.
• Please refer to uses previously allowed under existing code in C-3. (see below) The chart
needs to reflect the uses currently permitted under the zone or...
Sec. 34-848 (b) Permitted uses. Permitted uses in the C-3 gateway district are as follows:
(1) All non-residential permitted uses in the C-2 district.
(2) Office showrooms and office warehouses.
(3) Motor vehicle sales and service.
(4) Recreational equipment sales and service.
(5) Boat and trailer sales and service.
(6) Auto/truck washing services.
(7) Farm implement sales and service.
(8) Lumberyards and construction material sales.

Sec. 34-847. Downtown fringe district (C-2).

(b) Permitted uses. Permitted uses in the C-2 district are as follows:
(1) All non-residential permitted uses in the C-1 district.

Sec. 34-846. Downtown district (C-1).

(b) Permitted uses. Permitted uses in the C-1 downtown district are as follows:
(1) Commercial establishments of no more than 30,000 sq. ft. on the ground floor offering merchandise
or services to the general public. Such establishments include but are not limited to the following:
a. Retail establishments such as antique stores, second hand goods stores, grocery stores, hardware
stores, drugstores, department stores, clothing stores, furniture stores, restaurants, and on and off sale
liquor establishments. Drive-through facilities shall not be allowed for restaurants in this district.
b. Personal services such as laundromats, barbershops or beauty shops, shoe repair shops and
photography studios.
c. Professional services conducted in offices of a general nature, such as medical and dental clinics,
veterinary clinics, finance, insurance, research and development, E-commerce businesses, publishing,
software development, real estate, architects' or attorneys' offices.
d. Repair services such as jewelry and radio and television repair shops.
e. Entertainment, cultural facilities and services, and amusement services such as motion picture
theaters, concert or music halls, and bowling alleys.
f. Hotels.
g. Dance, health, and fitness studios.

h. Artisans' workshops.
i. Light, limited manufacturing of goods that are sold at retail on the premises.
(2) Public and semipublic buildings such as a post office and fire station and park space and plazas.
(3) Private clubs.
(4) Apartments (new or converted from other uses), provided they are located above the street level
uses or behind a commercial use on the street level and are no more dense than allowed in the R-5
(5) Automobile parking lots.
(6) Public utility facility that has the following characteristics:
a. Is not intended for human occupation;
b. Occupies an area of less than or equal to 500 square feet; and
c. Does not exceed the height of the highest building on an adjoining lot or an average grade to peak
height of 17 feet, whichever is less.

Section 2.9.11 - Mixed use. First you put it in under the previous comp plan - include it in the
Land Development Code, but donʼt define it so I canʼt use it. Now you take it off of our site in
the comp plan and put it back in the LDC? You guys are killing me...
Really, whatʼs the intent? How does it get used and whatʼs the process for it.

Having a mixed use development, but separating adjacent lots by use and then encouraging
mixed use just seems wrong. If your going to have mixed use make the whole site mixed use
otherwise its just hot air and more of the same separate uses by lot. Really no different than
what weʼve had all along - in my opinion.

2.9.12 Multi Family Dwellings in N1-B District needs some discussion. Certain product and size
are constraints for this market. Will Table 2.9-3 Replace park dedication requirements?

2.10.2 Accessory Uses. General Uses (2)(a)-Not that I see myself doing a lot of these, but it
may be a bit difficult to stay under 10ft for roof height in some cases. Really depends on how
you are measuring and if you are thinking the structure is less than 10x12 or so. Looks like a
big dog house.
Figure 2-4 p.63 not the best picture.

Table 2.10-1 Permitted Accessory Uses and Structures. Why canʼt we have a porch on a
building in the C2-B zone, or C1-B for that matter. (See 1531 Clinton below.) Buildings on
some C2-B sites that are near or adjacent to residential areas really should be able to be more
sensitive to the residential scale and character. A porch works great for this and also is an
excellent way to dress up an entryway.

2.11.4 (D) Model home language regarding number of models per builder or developer
restricted to one.
Only allowed on lots approved by development agreement. This language is not very flexible or
clear. Is it one model per developer/development or one for each builder in a development or
totally negotiable via the development agreement? I think this section needs a bit of refinement
to relate to our local climate and construction statistics. Maybe Steve has some input on this.

2.12.2 (B) Determination of Nonconformity status. Burden rests on the owner. See next.
2.12.3 (A) (1-2) Nonconforming pre-existing uses. We have a few uses currently in our
developments that were allowed under the existing or previous code. According to the new
code these will be considered nonconforming. I have some serious concerns about this, as the
buildings have been designed for the specific use allowed as well as the IBC (International
Building Code). To remove the use allowed makes the building not marketable for the intended
purpose. Due to location, building configuration and design constraints what options will we
have. Obtaining uses by conditional use permit/process is really inflexible and time consuming.
This should be cleared up by the use Table 2.7.2.

Article 3 Comments:

Table 3.2-1- Multiple Items to consider.

• N1-B Multi family dwellings min. and max. lot size may not be correct for larger buildings.
Really establishing a limited Multifamily product of 3-6 units. Will this scale be appropriate
within the N1-B, and how does it incorporate into the current rental code.
• Table 2.3-1 Multi family dwelling may need to be under 6 per site based upon max width of
150 feet. Or can they be 2 story with units above and below for around 12 units per lot? This
could use some investigation.
• Min. 18 inch finished ground floor should be reconsidered for multifamily as State and
Federal building codes control accessibility of units. At least for units required to be
accessible (2007 State Amended Building code IBC -requires 1 unit to meet accessibility
requirements in each unit between 1-25 units).
• 30 foot front yard setback does not allow Multifamily units in R2-B or R3-B to engage the
street. Any incentive to create units in a more compact ʻurban town homeʼ configuration may
be helpful. More on this under Architectural Standards.

3.2.2 Will redevelopment projects in the C1-B district be required to adhere to the 75 feet
maximum lot width requirement. How would this play out on the River Park Mall site or Econo
Foods? Just curious.

3.2.3 C2-B District Site Development Standards

(A) Still have a hard time with 20,000 sf minimum lot size. Commercial lot prices are pretty high
for smaller businesses to purchase land. Requires a multi-tenant building or commercial
(C) “front build-to line shall be within 30 to 65 feet of a lot line” is actually greater than what the
previous C-3 setback used to be. The use of “within” is a bit confusing. I assume 30 feet is the
closest we can have a build to line. Maybe you could clarify it. If your intending to get the
building closer to the street then the language should reflect that more clearly. We have several
buildings in the Schilling Business Park that have a 20ʻ setback and may also be located on a

corner. (As in the case of River Valley Professional building.) The 30ʼ setback (or build to line)
will be counter productive in some instances, where the creation of an interesting street scape
and a pedestrian “friendly” environment are needed. Iʼve attached that previous code section
for reference.

Sec. 34-848. Gateway commercial district (C-3).

(1) Lot area: 20,000 square feet.
(2) Lot width: 66 feet.
(3) Front yard: 20 feet from service street.
(4) Rear yard depth: 20 feet.
(5) Side yard, interior lot: One-half of building height (minimum of ten feet).
(6) Side yard, corner lot: 20 feet.
(h) Maximum height and building size.
(1) Height. 50 feet, unless authorized by conditional use permit.
(2) Ground floor building size. 80,000 sq. ft. Larger ground floors shall only be allowed through the approval of a
planned unit development.

3.2.7 ED-F District Site Development Standards - Same lot comments as above. This section
reminds me a lot of the old mixed use in the previous code. Itʼs obviously written with a specific
site in mind. What happens if it needs to be applied to a smaller infill site? Has anyone from
the EDA really read this - isnʼt this their baby? Will it be flexible enough to allow something
other than what you define it as on page 20? What is the implied scale of “corporate
administrative offices and medium size research and development firms”? For an “urban
campus” it really doesnʼt have many permitted uses that would make it urban - most are by
conditional use.

3.3 General Development standards.

3.3 (D) Retaining walls
(2) “Over 48 inches, measured from the top of the footing to the top of the wall” would be about
a 12” retaining wall with a frost footing. Most retaining walls require a significant foundation
unless they are a modular unit like an anchor block wall system.
Figure 3-14 - limits height to six feet per terrace, Is the same system of measurement to be

3.4.2 Reverse Frontage Prohibited -Strictly for residential?

(2)&(4) Will be interested to see how this plays out in new developments, may create a larger
ratio of alley configurations around the perimeter. Some of this may depend on the existing
street types and developed abutting parcels. I assume the cost of maintaining the alley will fall
back on the home owner at some point, these lots will be more expensive for some housing

3.4.3 Architectural Design Requirements for Multi-Family Dwellings.

(B) Orientation of primary entrances. Figure 3-17 depicts a town home development not a multi-
family apartment ʻcomplexʼ. Requiring larger Multi-Family primary entrance to orient to the
street may be not fit existing site layouts, irregular configurations or street layouts. I would
also note that the street layout shown is a combination of public and private streets. In other
than looks to the street, I am not sure you can change how ownerʼs and their guests will
enter the building. My guess is most people are not going to park on that outside street to
enter the apartment or town home. What will the guidelines be that dictate private street
width and design?
(C) Design of Front Facades
• These standards and wall offsets are all really too Norman Rockwell for me.

• Figure 3-18 is funny since the image on the right still meets three of the design features listed
in the design standards.
(D) Design Features of Side Facades
(1) “Side facades within 25 feet of vacant land zoned for residential uses shall incorporate a
minimum of 15 percent facade area glazing.” Why? This number is pretty high, especially for
larger buildings that may actually face south. Why donʼt you offer some incentives for 4 sided
articulation and architectural detail/finishes? Maybe reduce or offset development fees.

(E) Building Foundations (1)&(2) - Raised finished floor - What about slab on grade structures?
Also not always great for an aging population. Not making these affordable.
3.4.4 Architectural Design for Nonresidential Buildings
(A) Applicability- This section shall apply to development in the C2-B and ED-F districts. What
about redevelopment in the C1-B district which now includes the old C-2 district.

B(4) Building Design and Mass - All architectural elevations of principal buildings shall consist of
a base, a body, and a cap. Not sure I like the proportions as set for in the next section.
Language defines a particular style by percentages and ratios based upon building height. Not
sure all buildings need to fit under this, sure hope mine donʼt. How does this apply to new
school construction or public buildings? New Middle School would not have fit these

(5) Roof styles- “The height of any pitched roof shall not exceed one-half of the overall building
height.” This is a dog house generator. Are you saying the pitch can only be one half of the
height (i.e. a 12ʼ tall building can have a maximum of a 6:12 slope) or that the roof can only
be 6ʼ-0” tall? Either way for buildings of any size, this will lead to lower appearing sloped
roofs. Also not very practical for Churches. Why are we restricting roof pitch?

3.4.5. Design Requirements for Large-Scale Nonresidential Buildings- Will this section be
applied to redevelopment projects in the C1-B ? (i.e. Grocery, Liquor Store, Library, Safety
Center, ʻQʼ block redevelopment etc.

(2)(b) “Roofline changes shall be vertically aligned with corresponding wall offset” will not allow
for asymmetrical design.
Figure 3-22 This image really scares me. I understand using it to illustrate offsetting the roof
edge in order to create an interesting building edge condition. Itʼs the fake second floor that
gives me the willies. It also illustrates the symmetry of a certain design style. The same is true
of Figure 3-23.
(3) Flat roofs - “When used shall be concealed with three-dimensional cornice treatments.
Cornice shall include an 8” perpendicular projection from the facade plane.” There may be
instances where this would be appropriate based upon context, but certainly not always the
case. Also adding a considerable expense in order to match a certain historic style is not, in
my opinion, very sustainable or responsible. Not sure how these would apply to the range
of different building scales this code may regulate.
(4) Asymmetric or Dynamic Roofs- allowed as long as they have fake 8” cornice projections.
This may actually defeat the purpose of having a “Dynamic” roof.

3.4.5 (5)(a) 25% Glazing for building elevations directly fronting public streets. What about
buildings that have 2 or 3 sides facing public streets? Thatʼs a considerable amount of glazing
with obvious heating and cooling load requirements in our climate. For some building types

this may work, but certainly not all. Most of the sections here really point to commercial strip
buildings and are treating all buildings the same. Not even sure that the commercial buildings of
the last decade are that far off base. Can we get to the fundamental intent of this requirement
and then see if there are some other methods to pull it off?
(b) Not sure design by equation is going to help here. Now we need to have Staff and or
the PC, determine the acceptable design for client. This could lead to some project delays and
additional process time for what?

(d) Description implies masonry construction by use of terms like ʻlintels and sills,ʼ not all
buildings will use masonry at windows and doors. Are you expecting all brick construction?
This is also not optional but as written states “ All doors and windows shall be articulated
through the use of lintels, sills, and thresholds.” The statement limiting windows to 20 sf
(unless for display) without dividing mullions has no relation to overall building scale or
design concept. Thatʼs roughly a 3x7 foot side light next to an entry door. These are
stumbling blocks for dealing with buildings/projects of different scales. What may be
appropriate for one may not be on a larger building.

(6) Customer Entrance Design. Language again implies strict retail business buildings. List of
features may not always yield the result you want. Use of unique landscape, concrete walk/
pathways, site lighting, building massing and other scale appropriate details should be
credited. Not sure the design features fit all building types. May be fine for strip buildings
and controlling bigger boxes but thatʼs about it.

3.5.3- Exemptions from Neighborhood Compatibility Standards-

(C) Define or locate “existing mixed use developments” as we have none recognized by our
zoning ordinances.

3.5.4 (C) (1)(a) Staff to confirm validity of data presented? What level of certification or
documentation will be required. Survey?

3.5.5 - Standards for Development in NC-F district will not work for previous Mixed-Use guided
sites. What District will?(Behind Target) It was my understanding early on that this would work,
but it is clear that as it has come forth itʼs really a different smaller animal. How do you
proposed to remedy the change that has occurred from the previous comp plan to the current
on this and St. Olafʼs site?

3.6.3 - Assume submitted to and approved by DRC?

3.6.4. -(2)(a)-not all commercially bought plants come with a ʻlabel.ʼ

3.6.4.-5 (a&e) - Deciduous trees of 2.5 diameter are too large to support on larger scale
projects. Require a significant amount of water for a considerable time after planting. Could
this be on a sliding scale similar to diversity table? Maybe form 1.5 - 2.5 based upon # of trees
planted. Also has to do with sequencing of projects and obviously how much money you sit on
in escrow from developers. Shrubs of 2 feet minimum tall are too large for some planted areas.
Also require significant water support.

(f)- Grass like lawn turf on larger scale projects may not be the most sustainable plant material.
Language such as ʻnormally grown as permanent lawns in Minnesotaʼ implies turf grass. Is
Prairie grass and acceptable substitute? And if so...
(g) If Prairie grass is considered ground cover, its hard to have a ʻfinishedʼ appearance after only
one growing season.

3.6.5 (E)(1) 30% paving could be tough for 3 car garages on certain lot types.
(4) Single dwelling parking, can you define ʻtemporaryʼ here? Are you saying you canʼt leave
your car in your driveway (which is street side setback) for...a week, without moving it? Who
will enforce this?
3.6.6 (a) one tree per 50ʼ required for all zones, on all public streets? Not super clear here.

3.6.7 Tree and Woodland Preservation - Iʼll do it if you have to...oh wait, youʼve exempted the
City again. 3.6.7 (D) I say lead by example.

3.6.7 (2)(a-c) Especially (b) I can cut the tree and you can have its replacements, yeah right...or
(c) if trees are cut, you canʼt develop until you replace them. I wonder how this would pan out
for the trees cut by the dam on the Cannon River last Summer? This section could use a bit of

3.6.8 Parking Lot Landscaping

(c)(1) (a) 10ʼ landscaping strip between parking lot and city right of way, seems a bit much on
certain streets pending R.O.W and street type.
(b-e) - Are we going to have a lot of screens or gates between property lines that act like
barriers rather than encourage connections, pedestrian or other. Fast forward 10 years.
Maybe should encourage smaller parking zones, tighter lots or smaller vehicle parking choices
as options as well.
3.6.8(2) Side or rear property lines 6ʼ landscaped buffer still apply in downtown zero lot line
configurations for redevelopment?

3.6.8(C)(3)(a)Parking Lots Adjacent to Residential Uses - Barrier design mentality - A four-foot

high solid decorative masonry wall or fence, is this really what you want? Seems like we should
be encouraging more scale sensitive buildings in those areas. The use of appropriate setbacks,
landscaping and smaller parking or better yet on street parking to connect the land rather than
divide it - may also promote better design. I am not sure a 4ʼ wall is better than a sensitive

3.6.8(D)(1)(a) Needs a diagram - 5% of gross parking and drive area landscaping within each
parking area. Are you saying islands? Will this apply to C1-B redevelopments or City/School
projects? If not, why?

(b&c) These numbers are significant for landscaped Islands. 10% of gross area for a 10,000 sf
building with 40 stalls(15,850sf) will require a 10ʼx150ʼ ʻlandscaped area. Your trees sizes are
vastly different then those required in other sections. How do these numbers relate to buffer
areas in section 3.6.9? Will this apply to C1-B redevelopments or City/School projects? If not,

3.6.9 “Define properly mitigate the negative effects of contiguous incompatible uses?”
Thought the intent of the code (or form based code) would allow multiple uses to coexist without
“mitigating.” Can you explain or provide and example in the City? Why is C1-B exempt, see
section 3.6.9(A)(2) and then shown in table 3.6-3: required Buffer Areas. What will dictate
redevelopment within the core abutting residential? Will that also be the case for
redevelopment along the Hwy #3 near the core?(say ʻQʼ block)
(C) Structures- Structures not allowed within a Buffer area. Does that also include a place
holder for public art and or gazebo/sidewalk resting area, bike rack, etc. Thinking about the
space near the front of the property close to the sidewalk but between properties.
3.6-3: Required Buffer Areas: NC-F shows no buffer required yet P.113 calls for screening with
4ʼ high fences and plantings.
Table 3.6-4: Minimum Planting Requirements “B” calls for 3 Evergreens every 100 lineal feet.
For downtown to R1-B or N1-B residential uses. Are evergreens the right tree for this in the
downtown assuming you forgot you were exempt?

3.6.10(c) Screening at least one foot higher than the item to be screened but not less than six
feet in height along 3 sides. This is a substantial “screen”, are we screening trash enclosures to
that height? Typically these have to match the construction of the primary building which will
require foundations, and matching finish material. Does this also apply for ground mounted air
conditioner condensers?(3.6.10(B)(5)) When is a wall required versus just planted material.
Again an issue of scale for some of the smaller commercial properties.

3.8.3 General Provisions (E) Vehicles for Sale- This could be problematic for a resident to just
sell their car. What are we getting at here?

3.8.4(1) Why canʼt on street parking be “credited” at a certain rate. You should be able to count
stalls along building lot street frontage.

3.8.4(3) Implies you know the intended uses prior to construction which is not always the case.
Usually come up with a best guess scenario of possible uses, then discuss with DRC. Will this
still be possible as this section is worded? ʻUnless otherwise noted or approvedʼ by who?

3.8.5 Off-Street Parking Space Requirements - (C) Uses in the C1-B are exempt from these
requirements. What about redevelopment within the C1-B. River Park Mall area, Lansingʼs
Block, etc. Are you encouraging much larger buildings and potential parking needs without
addressing how the parking will be accounted and paid for? What about a parking ramp fund?

Table 3.8-1: Number of Parking Space Requirements

Multi-family uses still require 2 stalls per dwelling for the most part, no credit for on street
parking. General Office space lost one space per thousand based on previous code, and
Medical picked up one. This also implies that the use is always known before building
construction, or that parking will be easy to add when a use is changed, which is not easy to do.
Will the requirement to meet this chart cause problems when use changes occur? (i.e.
Northfield Urgent Care Clinic at Heritage Retail) This table could use some discussion.

3.8.7 (A)Bicycle Parking one space for every five parking spaces. Is there a cap on this? It
could get a bit out of hand for a larger scale project. (185 parks requires 37 bikes.)

3.8.8(A)(1)(a-c) Particularly (c) Are only additional spaces above the 10 percent by right
required to be pervious? Or all additional spaces? What if the siteʼs surface water runoff
retention has already accounted for the additional parking? Just not installed until needed.
3.8.9(D) 8ʼ Distance from building to parking lot curb, 3ʼ min. landscaped area with 5ʼ min. walk.
Can this have some wiggle room? Be an average along the face. Have a bit of variation?

3.8.10(A)(2) 20ʼ queuing area before parking stall or parking lane. Tighter sites will find this
difficult. Figure 3-36 shows a building in a zero lot line or build to line configuration without
setback from property and street. I do not believe this is possible in the C2-B. It does not reflect
the queuing area from the street to the property within the Right of Way. Can this be counted as
on site queuing?

3.8.10(D)(2) Compact parking stalls only when 50 or more total stalls min 5% - max 20%. This
range is fine but why canʼt we encourage compact parking in some of the smaller lot
configurations < 50?

3.8.11(C) “Additionally all sidewalks and crosswalks shall be constructed of an impervious

surface and shall be visually distinct from the driving surface by use of pavers, bricks or scored
concrete” Figure 3-38 doesnʼt actually show what your asking for. As written this will require
concrete or pavers through the bituminous drive lane. This is excessive for smaller

3.8.11(D) 8ʼ wide side walk at customer entrances with clear passage equal to the 8ʼ with means
car overhang. This would be about a 10ʼ walk in front of smaller commercial buildings.
“Additionally, such sidewalks shall connect all customer entrances and to other internal
sidewalks” is a lot of concrete! This scale is off for smaller buildings. Why is this size the
standard for all? Is this also intended for professional/service related businesses besides
straight retail?

3.9(D)(2) Side walks 7ʼ from back of curb in all street configurations? May want some possible
options in mixed use or higher intensity areas.

3.10.3 Energy Conservation Design. Specific to residential lot layouts or... Can you translate
how increased concrete, impervious surfaces, increased glazing requirements regardless of
solar orientation, larger site dimensions - translates into Energy Conservation? This is for land
subdivision, but some of our design guidelines are counter productive.

3.10.4 Development Agreement (C)(3)(a-e) No grading until plat is filed at County Recorders
Office. Not even rough site grading and preliminary street layout. I think this will greatly impact
construction schedules and the development of feasible projects in our climate. This needs
more discussion.

3.10.4(D) (2&5)Time of Performance - 6 months may not adequately cover an extension from
Nov. 15 to April 15 is 5 months off for Winter. Really only gives you 1 month to finish. Canʼt
these terms be addressed in the development agreement. You have a lot of paper work to redo
for no reason.

3.11.2 (G) Double Frontage Lots- Does this also apply to commercial subdivisions? Doesnʼt
seem like it should.

Table 3.11-2 Access Spacing - 660 feet is not really helpful for infill projects.

3.11.8 Sidewalks installed at time of street construction. Type of project and phasing should be
considered. Also inclusion of public plazas and or points of interest along the walk or integrated
in the walk during construction of the project may be beneficial. Difference between commercial
and residential projects. Also a question of resources and when to provide them. All walks
need to be maintained at a considerable expense if there is no construction or use to support
them. Not exactly energy conscious.

Bill Ostrem

Tracy Davis <>

MnDOT bike lane language

William Ostrem <> Fri, May 8, 2009 at 6:19 AM
To: Tracy Davis <>, Brian Erickson <>, Dan Olson
<>, Katy Gehler-Hess <>
Cc: Mike Meehan <>,,, Erik Hong
<>, Daniel Jones <>, Darin Pavek <>, Lynn
Bruns <>, Jay Jasnoch <>, Leota Goodney
<>, Steven Pahs <>, Steve Schmidt
<>, "William (Pepe) Kryzda" <>, David Van Wylen <>,
Bruce Anderson <>, Peter Schmelzer <>,

The street table in the Land Development Code lists bike lanes as being 4-6 feet wide. Last meeting I recommended
that those dimensions be mentioned in a footnote to an empty column representing bike lanes as a possible design
element on city roads. I wanted to add that I think the note should mention that the 4-foot width is a non-standard
width; 5 or 6 feet is standard according to the MnDOT Bikeway Facility Design Manual. The language below is from
the manual and nicely summarizes the safety and other benefits of bike lanes as well as the width standards.

It will be important to have a community discussion about expanding the bike lane network, esp. if a bike lane
eliminates a parking lane. The transportation function of the road will have to be considered alongside its parking

Bicycle lanes provide separation from traffic and accommodate bicycles better than shared lanes
or wide outside lanes. Research indicates that bicycle lanes have a strong channelizing effect
on motor vehicles and bicycles. Bicycle lane stripes remind motorists to expect bicycles and can
increase bicyclists’ confidence that motorists will not stray into their path of travel. Designers
should refer to Chapter 9 of the MN MUTCD, which provides standards for bike lane signs,
striping and pavement markings.

Bicycle lanes usually have a width of 1.5 m (5 ft)or 1.8 m (6 ft)as provided in Table 4-1,
depending on the factors discussed in Section 4-2.1. Bicycle lanes wider than 1.8 m (6 ft)may
be misinterpreted by some drivers as a travel lane or right-turn lane. Where additional width is
available on the roadway, additional clearance between vehicles and the bike lane can be
provided by increasing the widths of the parking lane and/or travel lane. Where the roadway
width is restrictive, striping and marking a non-standard 1.2 m (4 ft)bike lane may provide safer
channelization than a wide curb lane. (Section 4-3.3, p. 76)

-Bill Ostrem, Chair

Northfield Area Task Force on Nonmotorized Transportation

On Mon, May 4, 2009 at 11:27 AM, Tracy Davis <> wrote:

Hello everyone,

I ran across this website which has some terrific computer-generated scenarios to help people envision
changes in the built environment:

Also, I know some of you had lists or comments of problems/unresolved issues that we did not get to at the
last meeting. The only one I remember seeing was from Steve Schmidt. It would be helpful if you'd "reply all"

1 of 2
The suggestions from my powerpoint follow.

• Limit buildable floor area relative to lot area

• Allow more floor area for features such as porches, towers, dormers, balconies,
inside foundation corners, smaller acc’y buildings
• Limit height of ground floor above property line, unless conditions merit
• Limit length of unbroken walls with 2-foot minimum offset
• limit unbroken wall height
• weight roof height by unbroken length
• require residential buildings to relate to other residential buildings on the block,
but non-residential to relate to all buildings on the block
• consider existing building height as average of all roof heights measured per Fig.
• dovetail with rental ordinance