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Planners prepare to rule on SCC expansion application

By Staff | Feb 23, 2011

A public hearing to consider three applications from the leaders at Sanibel Community Church, who are proposing a major restoration and expansion of Fellowship Hall, Family Life Center, kitchen and historic 210-seat chapel was announced during Tuesday’s brief meeting of the Planning Commission.

Without any other items on their agenda, other than the approval of the minutes from their Feb. 8 session and a short City Council Liaison Report from councilman Jim Jennings, planners offered a minor debate over parking during the weekly Farmers Market before looking at the notice for the public hearing, scheduled to take place on March 8.

To be considered at their next meeting are applications for a conditional use permit to construct a new 630-seat sanctuary, administrative offices, media room, bookstore and cafe, as well as the addition of a 600-square-foot garage at Sanibel Community Church. They are also proposing to remodel their chapel, hall, kitchen and Family Life Center and expand the existing courtyard and off-street parking areas.

According to Jimmy Jordan, Director of Planning, the application also calls for the implementation of on-site surface water management improvements, restoration and preservation of on-site wetlands, the installation of a required landscape buffer and the relocation of the existing westerly driveway.

Sanibel Community Church’s applications, submitted by Raymond A. Pavelka on behalf of the church, are also requesting a temporary use permit to install a 60-foot-by-24-foot modular building to serve as the church’s administrative offices for the duration of the proposed construction activities.

“That’s the only item that we will have for the (meeting on March) 8th,” said Jordan.

Commission chairman Michael Valiquette mentioned that parking during Sunday’s Farmers Market has seen a couple of problems. Jordan explained that organizers have experienced some difficulty in directing vehicles to available parking adjacent to the City Hall property, which hosts the weekly event. It was also suggested that parking underneath the Sanibel Public Library, just east of the market site, was “underutilized.”