NOVEMBER 10, 2022

The meeting of the Cuyahoga County Planning Commission (County Planning) was called to order by Mr. Joseph Nanni at 2:00 p.m. and the roll call showed a quorum was present.

No requests for public comment.

On a motion by Mayor Orcutt, seconded by Mayor Bobst, the meeting minutes for the September 8, 2022 were duly adopted by unanimous vote.

Resolution No. 221110-A requesting the approval of a Professional Services Agreement between Cuyahoga County Planning Commission and Brickpath Group, Inc. for Brickpath Group, Inc. to facilitate a Strategic Planning Session Scope of Services for the Cuyahoga County Planning Commission.

Director Mary Cierebiej introduced the resolution for the staff strategic planning session. The purpose of the session is to brainstorm for the future of the planning commission agency, evaluate the mission and vision, and establish organizational goals and objectives. This exercise will also help to develop a three-to-five year view of strategic imperatives and define strategic initiatives for 2023. The negotiated cost of $10,000 with an initial payment of $5,000 in 2022 and final $5,000 in 2023 was proposed and agreed upon. The services of Brickpath Group, Inc. will include advance work including holding multiple pre-planning meetings, developing an online survey tool to capture input, and facilitating an offsite, full-day strategic planning session for all the staff. The session will be held at the Watershed Stewardship Center in the West Creek Reservation in Parma.

On a motion by Mayor Bobst, seconded by Mayor Gallagher, Resolution No. 221110-A requesting the approval of a Professional Services Agreement between Cuyahoga County Planning Commission and Brickpath Group, Inc. for Brickpath Group, Inc. to facilitate a Strategic Planning Session Scope of Services for the Cuyahoga County Planning Commission was duly adopted with a unanimous vote.

Councilperson Simon and Director Huang joined the meeting at 2:10 p.m.

Ms. Jennifer Karaffa gave a financial update on County Planning’s 2022-2023 biennial budget. Ms. Karaffa reported that County Planning is on track in 2022 with fiscally responsible spending – salaries being its largest operating expense. County Planning also continues to bring in outside revenue for clients served, provides in-kind planning, zoning, and GIS services, and acts as a fiscal agent for Cuyahoga County Initiatives such as the Lakefront Public Access Plan and Healthy Urban Tree Canopy Grant Programs.  County Planning’s 2023 Operating Budget was previously adopted by County Council but may require changes and additional appropriation given increased healthcare costs, an additional 1% Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA), filling of vacancies, and proposed market-wage increase legislation.

Ms. Nichole Laird presented on the Maple Heights 2019 Master Plan and started with some background information. In 2017, City of Maple Heights, with the assistance of the Cuyahoga County Planning Commission, performed a comprehensive update to the City’s Master Plan that identified several goals and action steps that pertain to the Broadway Corridor and Maple Point. In 2020, the City of Maple Heights applied for and received a grant award for professional planning services to update the Broadway Corridor Overlay of the City’s Zoning Code and Zoning Map.  On October 19, 2020 County Planning entered a Memorandum of Understanding with the City of Maple Heights and began the following process:

  • Reviewed Existing BCO Overlay District Text & Gather Input
  • Identified Needs, Issues, and Opportunities
  • Drafted New Zoning Regulations & Additional Design Standards
  • Identified Needed Zoning Map Updates
  • Prepared Updated Zoning Map & Online Zoning Map
  • Presented Draft Regulations and Map to Planning Commission:
  • Presented Updated Zoning Text and Map to the Maple Heights Planning and Zoning Commission on October 11, 2021. Input from the meeting and in the following weeks was added to the draft changes.
  • Prepared Final Ordinance and Map for Mayor and City Council

On April 6, 2022, the Broadway Central Business District (CBD) Zoning Text & Definitions Amendments were unanimously adopted by Maple Heights City Council. Then on September 7, 2022, the Zoning Map Amendment for the rezoning of parcels in the Broadway Central Business District (CBD) were unanimously adopted by Maple Heights City Council.

Patrick Hewitt, AICP, EDFP – Planning Manager, Strategy & Development, Matthew Moss – Manager, Strategic Initiatives – City of Cleveland Planning Commission, and Maribeth Feke, AICP – Director of Programming & Planning – Greater Cleveland RTA (GCRTA) gave presentations on the Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) Zoning Initiative. Transit-oriented development includes a mix of commercial, residential, office, and entertainment centered around or located near a transit station. Dense, walkable, mixed-use development near transit attracts people and adds to vibrant, connected communities. (Federal Transit Administration)

Mr. Hewitt reported on the initial findings:

  • 22 TOD Corridors & 26 Communities in TOD Walksheds
  • More than $300 million in major investments annually in TOD Walksheds, but heavily concentrated in certain neighborhoods
  • The design of new development influences whether it conforms to principles of TOD
  • TOD Corridors cover 19% of County land, but includes 29% of jobs, 35% of population, and 54% of those under poverty line within the corridor
  • Within TOD Corridors, more land used for parking than for buildings, and most land is zoned for single-family
  • There is significant opportunity to add density and development along TOD Corridors.

The goals of the TOD Zoning study are to examine the current state of TOD in Cuyahoga County, identifying and quantifying TOD corridors and TOD examples. Another goal is to analyze TOD zoning and whether existing zoning along transit lines allows TOD to identify target areas for future investment. Then develop model zoning for TOD that can be adopted by individual municipalities. Finally, the study will identify TOD financing mechanisms and incentives successfully used in other communities.

Matt Moss presented on the City of Cleveland Planning Commission’s parallel efforts around Transit-Oriented Development. The City Planning Commission has analyzed population and employment density around transit corridors to determine areas where sufficient levels of density are present to support TOD. Additionally, Matt outlined areas where further development may be needed to support TOD and where current zoning does not allow this type of dense development. Finally, he discussed the steps the City of Cleveland Planning Commission is taking to address TOD, such as revising zoning ordinances to reduce parking requirements and adding transportation demand management regulations.

Ms. Feke gave numerous examples of GCRTA TOD projects such as Tower City in 1989 which was a multi-million-dollar rail station redevelopment project; East 150th Rapid Station with the development of a hotel on GCRTA property; Windermere and Triskett Rapid Transit Stations with a daycare center on the GCRTA property; and West 65th street Rapid Transit Station with affordable housing on GCRTA property. Pending developments are the Columbus Road/West 25th TOD with mixed use development with GCRTA participating in revenue sharing; and West Blvd. Cudell Station to include affordable housing.

In closing, the goal of the study is to improve zoning regulations and governmental policies to attract more transit-oriented development to key corridors in Cuyahoga County.

Director Mary Cierebiej began her Executive Director’s report by introducing County Planning’s new hire Liam Leveto -GIS Specialist. Interviews are underway for Spring 2023 Co-op from the University of Cincinnati. County Planning will soon be posting for a Principal Planner given additional work planned from community planning grant awards.

Director Cierebiej continued with an update to the 2022 planning grants program. Applications came in for a variety of planning work including corridor studies, active transportation plans, and parks & greenspace plans.  Fourteen applications have been received and are being scored and evaluated.  A scope of work will be prepared to determine the capacity with our current staff. Estimates are to be able to handle three to four projects.

County Council voted to approve two measures that will impact the County Planning Commission staff and the Agency’s budget:  the PRC Classification Plan on 11/9/2022, and recommendations for Increases to the County’s “Salary Schedule A” based on market wage.  Currently Council referred these items to the HRAE Committee, which will then go back to Council for a vote.

Director Cierebiej is working closely with the County Law Department on Policy Updates. including Board Bylaws, and the Agency’s Compensation Policy and its Personnel Policies & Procedures Manual.  Any changes and/or recommendation will require Board approval and are slated to be introduced in 2023.

Two Board terms are expiring on 12/31/22: one for Mayor Bobst and one for Mayor DiCicco.  The Cuyahoga County Council President will renew/appoint Council seats and the New County Executive will renew/appoint Mayoral seats.

And last, Director Cierebiej shared a short film about the Cuyahoga Greenway trails.

Old Business
There was no old business.

New Business
There was no new business.

On a motion by Councilperson Simon, seconded by Mayor Bobst, the Planning Commission meeting was adjourned at 3:06 p.m.

Next Tentative Meeting is December 8, 2022.

Solid Waste Policy Committee following directly after meeting.

NOVEMBER 10, 2022

Mayor Bibb/ Director HuangYes
Mayor Pamela BobstYes
Mayor Michael Dylan BrennanNo
Councilperson Yvonne ConwellYes/Mr. Brendan Doyle
Director Michael DeverNo
Mayor Anthony DiCiccoYes
Mayor GallagherYes
Mayor OrcuttYes
Mayor Michael ProcukYes
Mayor Brad SellersNo
Councilperson Sunny SimonYes