1.   Roll Call

PRESENT:  Baker, Geisler, Kozakiewicz, Max, Senesac, Slicker, Svenson, and Wieland

ABSENT:     Dowling (previously arranged)

OTHERS PRESENT:  Jon Lynch, Director of Planning & Community Development; Mark Ostgarden, City Planner; Cheri Standfest, Administrative Assistant;  and 18 others.

2.   Approval of the minutes of the meeting of October 8, 2002

Wieland moved approval of the minutes of the meeting of October 8, 2002 with Slicker supporting the motion.  The minutes were approved as presented.



3.   Public Hearings


a.        Preliminary Plat of Winding Creek Estates – request of Bennett Construction for tentative approval of a preliminary plat of Winding Creek Estates, a residential subdivision of 83 lots on 48.2 acres east of Perrine Road and north of Letts Street. [see transcript]


4.   Public Comments (not related to agenda items)


Mr. Tom McCann of 3305 Jefferson Avenue addressed the Planning Commission and noted that he owns a significant amount of property along North Saginaw Road and he recommends that, even though he owns several houses on the road, that the City zone the property along the north side of the road to a commercial status.


5.      Old Business


a.        Preliminary Plat of Countryside Estates – request of Schroeder Builders for tentative approval of a preliminary plat of Countryside Estates, a residential subdivision of 56 lots on 18.42 acres west of Dublin Avenue and south of Countryside Drive. Mr. Lynch provided a brief review of the public hearing conducted regarding this petition on October 8th.  He shared public comments received since the conclusion of public hearing regarding access to the “Haug” property and site drainage.

Mr. Lynch shared with Commissioners a proposed preliminary plat of Jilmar Estates as well as the plat that was ultimately approved.  It was noted that some modification of the originally submitted plat would result in Vandemere Street connecting to the proposed Summergate Lane.  The property owner, Mr. Ken Haug, previously indicated that he would continue to discuss a potential connection with Mr. Schroeder but that connecting Vandemere to Dublin Road would likely be more efficient.

Mr. Scott Bell of Lapham Associates spoke on behalf of the petitioner and noted that runoff generated by the development is not allowed to discharge onto adjacent property.  While the site drainage system is yet to be designed to detail, the petitioner understands that the design must be reviewed and approved by the City’s Engineering Department.

Commissioner Senesac stated that this plat complied with provisions of the Subdivision Ordinance and should be approved.

It was moved by Senesac and seconded by Kozakiewicz to recommend to City Council tentative approval of the preliminary plat of Countryside Estates contingent upon:


1)       The City Council grants an exception from Section 23-53 of the Subdivision Ordinance, permitting Summergate Lane to be located within 625 feet of Vandemere Drive.

2)       Storm water retention plans are reviewed and approved by the City of Midland Engineering Department.

3)       Provisions are made for private maintenance of parks dedicated for private use.


The vote proceeded as follows:

YEA:  Baker, Geisler, Kozakiewicz, Max, Senesac, Slicker, Svenson, and Wieland

NAY:  None

ABSENT:  Dowling


b.        Zoning Petition No. 495 – request of James Wilson on behalf of Midland Ford to rezone property east of Washington Street and south of Eastlawn Drive from Office Service-2 to Business B-2 zoning.  Mr. Lynch provided a brief review of the public hearing conducted regarding this petition on October 8th. 

Commissioner Senesac inquired about how the proposed parking are would be utilized if the rezoning were approved.  Mr. Richard Handlon, speaking on behalf of Mr. Wilson, indicated that employee parking would not be eliminated.  Mr. Wilson also pointed out that the employees would park in a designated area while the balance of the site would accommodate 30 to 40 new vehicles for sale.

Commissioner Senesac also inquired about the licensed vehicles currently parked behind the primary building.  Mr. Wilson stated that those vehicles are customer’s cars there for service.  They are typically in and out of the “shop” in a day.  It would be inefficient to park those cars across Wisconsin Street and putting wrecked cars there would detract from the appearance of the neighborhood.

Mr. Tom McCann of 3305 Jefferson Avenue expressed support for the requested rezoning, noting that it would not have a detrimental impact on the area and that he would hate to see Ford leave the already crowded property.

Commissioner Senesac stated that while approving the requested rezoning would facilitate automobile sales, the Planning Commission must keep in mind that if the dealership moved, any use permitted in the Business B-2 Zone could ultimately be built on the site.  The requested change would also bring the commercial strip along South Saginaw Road farther from Saginaw and closer to the neighborhoods.

Commissioner Svenson indicated that she supports the use of the site for car sales but that rezoning would allow many different uses.

Chairman Geisler stated that any use permitted in the Business B-2 Zone would be appropriate at this location and would not be detrimental.

Commissioner Kozakiewicz stated that in the event of a change of use, some uses allowed in the Business B-2 Zone could be bad for the area.

Commissioner Max expressed agreement with Chairman Geisler.

Pointing out that he voted against this request in 2000, Commissioner Baker found that changes in the area would warrant approval of the request.

Commissioner Wieland stated that he was disappointed that a special use provision to allow Midland Ford to sell vehicles from this site was not successful in 2000.  However, he also feels that rezoning is not the appropriate approach to solving this problem.

Commissioner Slicker indicated that the Office Service area on the master plan seems to promote spot zoning.

Commissioners also discussed other regulatory methods of addressing the problem of permitting unlicensed cars but not licensed cars on this site including; special use permit, use variance, zoning text amendment, and overlay zoning.  Mr. Lynch explained that staff had not researched those matters and was not in a position to make a recommendation.

It was moved by Baker and seconded by Max to recommend to City Council approval of Zoning Petition No. 495. The vote proceeded as follows:

YEA:  Baker, Geisler, Max, Slicker

NAY:  Kozakiewicz, Senesac, Svenson, Wieland

ABSENT:  Dowling


The motion was defeated on a split decision.

c.        Discussion of Annexed Property – Discussion regarding application of City of Midland zoning classifications to recently annexed properties:


1.      Saginaw Road       - West City Limit (Cora Belle Bell property)

2.      Saginaw Road      - Midland Fence Company

3.      Saginaw Road       - West City Limit (Ronald Campbell property)

      Mr. Ostgarden and Mr. Lynch provided a review of a previous discussion regarding this geographic area.  Information pertaining to updating the master plan and extension of nonconforming uses was also provided to the Commission.

      Commissioners again engaged in a significant discussion regarding validity of the Future Land Use Plan for this area.  Testimony was received from Mr. Tom McCann in support of applying commercial zoning to this entire area.  It was noted that owners of the Humpert and McCardle parcels also support commercial zoning.  Mr. Wayne Reinberg owns property next to Midland Fence and wishes the zoning to be commercial.

      Commissioners continued to discuss current and anticipated changes of land use, street networks, and development in the general area.  Commissioner Max recommended that the Planning Commission discuss with Homer Township its long range land use plan for this area.

      The Commission expressed support for a joint meeting with Homer Township to discuss zoning in this general area.  Staff will attempt to schedule such a meeting shortly after the holiday season.

6.  New Business


7.  Communications


8.  Report of the Chairman


9.   Report of the Planning Director

The Director reported on the following matters:



October 14

                Preliminary Plat – Broadhead Estates (approved)

                SP No. 217 – Birchwood Pointe Apartments (approved)

                SP No. 218 – Eagle Ridge Church of God (approved)




November 5


Public hearings:

SP No. 219 – Alpine Village Mobile Home Park

ZP No. 497 – Application of RA-1 Zone to Rapanos property

ZP No. 498 – Application of RA-1 Zone to Bartow property

ZP No. 499 – Rezoning of property on Abbott Road from RA-2 to RA-4


                                                Action items will include:

                                                Preliminary Plat – Winding Creek Estates


November 12


                                                Public hearings:

                                                ZTX 140 – Zoning text amendments to recognize jail facilities

                                                ZP No. 496 – Rezoning of property on M-20 to district supporting jail facilities


                                                Action items will include:

                                                SP No. 219

                                                ZP No. 499


November 26


                                                Action items will include:

                                ZTX 140

                                ZP No. 496

                                ZP No. 497

                                                      ZP No. 498



10.  Adjourn.

Adjournment at approximately 9:25 PM was moved by Slicker, seconded by Wieland, and unanimously approved.

Respectfully submitted,



Jon Lynch, AICP

Planning Commission Secretary