Proposed restaurant in Scio delayed due to code violating co-tenant, parking concerns

The management team representing Fichera Restaurant was frustrated by the postponement of their plan to remodel an old industrial building into a restaurant and bar.

Applicants David Fichera and Steve Kleinschmidt along with Robert Kerr from Metro Group Architects in Ann Arbor, came to the October 27 meeting of the Scio Township Board expecting to receive approval on their plans to remodel a 4,201 square foot building at 3685 Jackson Road into a family oriented restaurant and bar.

The plans were approved earlier in the month by the Scio Township Planning Commission, but when presented to the Township Board, a few members had concerns.

Township Trustee Jack Knowles told the applicants that he did not want to see the plans approved before a couple of issues were worked out.

“There’s a building in back with zoning violations,” Knowles told them.

Fichera and Kleinschmidt are leasing the property but there is still a tenant in another building on the property, and Knowles said that tenant has trash that needs to be removed.

When Fichera responded that they were confident that the tenant will be moving out, board trustee David Read cautioned, “If we approve this and no one cleans it up in a reasonable time frame, these guys are on the hook and have a dump behind them.”

Knowles also expressed concern about the parking lot plan saying that the board has previously allowed less than optimal parking lots to gain approval, and that he didn’t want that to happen again.

Knowles said, “I don’t understand how a dead end parking lot is going to work out.”

Fichera responded that they don’t see the configuration of the parking lot as a problem.

But Knowles insisted that he could not approve the plans as they were and said he would convene a meeting to talk about the issues with consultants from the Township and the Fichera team as soon as possible. Action on approving the site plan is expected to be taken at the next board meeting on November 10.

It was an easier process for the board to approve (6-0 DeLong absent) the site plan for Pirates Cove, a storage facility located at 8225 Jackson Road, where five new indoor or covered storage buildings have been proposed.

The Brook N. Ridge subdivision is getting $10,000 from the Township to defray the $166,500 cost of road improvement thanks to the board’s unanimous vote. It’s part of the Township’s incentive program to transfer $10,000 from its General Fund to go to the Washtenaw County Road Commission.

Also approved (6-0) was a contract with Scott Hedberg, Hedberg Associates, for proposed improvements to the Township’s property located at 5575 Marshall Road. The goal is to do some interior painting and make other improvements so that the house can be placed on the market for sale by January 1, 2016.

Delinquent bills to the Township will receive fines thanks to the board adopting (6-0) an amendment to its code of ordinances. A late fee of ten percent will apply to any bills unpaid after the due date, and accounts which remain delinquent for more than 120 days will be placed on the next tax bill and become a lien on the property.

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