October 8, 2020

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Cuyahoga County Administration Building was closed for public meetings at the time of the meeting. As a result, this meeting was conducted remotely in accordance with State of Ohio HB 197. Interested persons could access the meeting via livestream by using the following link found at:


No emails were received for public comment.

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

On a motion by Mayor Gammella, seconded by Councilperson Simon, the minutes for September 10, 2020 meeting were duly adopted by unanimous vote.

No old business.

Resolution No. 201008-A
Approving a Planning Services Agreement with the City of Rocky River to prepare an Update to the Development Code: Phase 3.

Mr. Hewitt gave a background on the Rocky River project after County Planning completed the Rocky River Master Plan on behalf of the City of Rocky River in July, 2018. As a result of plan recommendations and known issues with the Code, the City of Rocky River sought an update of its Development Code and Zoning Map. The City of Rocky River hired County Planning to complete Phases 1 and 2 of the Development Code Update, which was approved by the Cuyahoga County Planning Commission Board in Resolution No. 190808-B. Phases 1 and 2 included a Code Diagnosis, Framework of Changes, and Zoning Map Updates.

The City of Rocky River applied for a Community Planning Grant on June 24, 2020 and was awarded a partial grant, which covers $20,000 toward the Phase 3 cost of $37,000. This Planning Services Agreement will cover the remainder of the project and will deliver $17,000 in revenue for County Planning. Phase 3 completes the Update to the Development Code. Final deliverables include an updated Development Code, updated Zoning Map, and Online Zoning Map.

Discussion continued on the zoning map pdf being updated to an online zoning map for use by all residents. Phase 3 is a complete Development Code update utilizing a new concept that County Planning will continue to expand. The desired outcome is to develop a concept to use in other districts in the future. Mr. Collier, City of Cleveland stated that Cleveland is working on form-based zoning because past zoning has caused confusion and the need for variances. Mr. Collier asked if the new online concept was to correct past zoning codes and may be used in other jurisdictions. Patrick replied that in the future County Planning will have a product to share with other communities wanting to update their zoning codes throughout the County. The project with the City of Rocky River is a hybrid working with the existing zoning codes that were updated in the last decade and brought up to modern standards. Not form based code but a mix of both traditional zoning codes with additional graphics and design standards that approach some of the elements of form-based code that are most helpful, marrying existing codes so it is not a complete rewrite but addresses some of the concerns that were brought up by the public during the Master Plan. Mayor Bobst added that Phase 3 is planned so that the City of Rocky River can realize the vision in the Master Plan and also provide the clarity and streamlining of the process for both the users and the City. Thank you to County Planning for working with administration, land use organizations and the residents. Mr. Seren asked about the fiscal aspect and Mr. Hewitt responded that as 50% of project is completed that half of the costs would come from County Grant and half from the city.

 On a motion by Mr. Dever, seconded by Mayor Brennan, Mayor Bobst abstaining, Resolution No. 201008-A, Approving a Planning Services Agreement with the City of Rocky River to prepare an Update to the Development Code: Phase 3, was duly adopted by unanimous vote.

Mr. Hewitt reported on the following:

Subdivision Regulations
Approved by County Council on Tuesday, September 15 and are finalized. Thanks to all who contributed to these updates from County Planning Staff, Department of Public Works, Department of Law, Soil and Water Conservation District, Townships, and others.

Parma Garage Zoning
Substantially completed a small zoning research request for appropriate garage standards. Contract was for a not-to-exceed amount of $1,000 in revenue for County Planning.

Justice Affairs Contract Extension
Justice Affairs has requested to extend a previous contract for an additional six months to the middle of 2021 not to exceed $5000.00 to provide mapping services to the department.

DOPWIC Administrative Cost Agreement
To update the commission from last meeting, $65,000 in revenue for County Planning to administer the DOPWIC program is set in state law. Any additional funding for County Planning to administer the program would come directly from funds otherwise intended for project awards. Upon looking at past years County Planning is comfortable with the $65,000.

Lakefront Public Access Plan
County Planning in partnership with the Cuyahoga County Department of Public Works is kicking off the Lakefront Public Access Plan. Initial meetings are being scheduled and the first public meeting is intended to be held in late November or early December.

Mr. Collier asked if the Lakefront Public Access Plan originated with NOACA. Mr. Hewitt explained that NOACA has a different initiative for Lakefront Transportation.  Cuyahoga County has a plan that is looking at transportation and public access directly along the lakefront, much of which is modeled after the Euclid plan where erosion control was exchanged for public access along the lakefront. NOACA has been invited on this steering committee because they are doing a larger study along three (3) counties for transportation, not just along the lakeshore and lakefront.

Mr. Collier also mentioned the CHEERS initiative with City of Cleveland and the Metroparks looking at lakefront access, habitat, and infrastructure. It was suggested that there is an overlap that needs to be acknowledged so that there is added value and not just replication; coordination not just collaboration with respect to how things are executed. Mr. Hewitt acknowledged the importance of all the initiatives and coordination with NOACA has been established so the scopes would be complimentary. The steering committee includes the City of Cleveland along with other lakefront communities.

Welcome to Blake Woodruff
County Planning has recently brought on a part time co-op student for this semester, Blake Woodruff was previously employed by County Planning in the Spring of 2020.

Census 2020
Self-response is still open and available. The Supreme Court is looking at the end date of the Census. Congratulations to Bentleyville on winning the ice cream challenge.

Mr. Dever updated the search to fill the Director’s position stating that there is a committee going through the process and there will hopefully be a recommendation brought to the next meeting.

No comments from the public.

On a motion by Mr. Dever, seconded by Mayor Sellers, the meeting was adjourned with unanimous vote.

Next Scheduled Meeting: Thursday, December 10, 2020


October 8, 2020 

Mayor Pamela BobstYes
Mayor Michael Dylan BrennanYes
Councilperson Shontel BrownYes, alternate Mr. Seren
Mayor Michael ByrneYes
Mr. Freddie CollierYes
Mr. Michael DeverYes
Mayor Anthony DiCiccoYes
Mayor Michael GammellaYes
Mayor Michael ProcukYes
Mayor Brad SellersYes
Councilperson Sunny SimonYes