MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE MIDLAND CITY PLANNING COMMISSION

WHICH TOOK PLACE ON TUESDAY,

SEPTEMBER 13, 2011, 7:00 P.M.,

COUNCIL CHAMBERS, CITY HALL, MIDLAND, MICHIGAN

 

1.   Roll Call

PRESENT:  Hanna, McLaughlin, Mead, Pnacek, Senesac, Stewart and Tanzini

ABSENT:   Young

VACANCY:  One

OTHERS PRESENT: Keith Baker, Planning Director, Cheri King, Community Development Specialist, Cindy Winland, Contract Planner, and 42 others.

 

2.   Approval of Minutes

Moved by Hanna, seconded by Senesac, to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of August 23, 2011 as written. Motion passed unanimously.

Moved by Senesac, seconded by McLaughlin, to approve the minutes of the special meeting of August 30, 2011 as written.  Motion passed unanimously. 

3.   Public Hearings

     

      a.   Conditional Use Permit No. 41, the request of DeShano Construction Company for a 49 unit 3-story senior multiple family apartment building, located at 5510 Eastman Avenue.

 

            Ms. Winland showed an aerial photograph of the subject property. The property is 2.42 acres and is zoned Office Service.  Multiple-family residential is a conditional use in the Office Service District.  The footprint of the proposed building is 19,215 sq. ft.  They wish to build 35 one-bedroom units of 500 sq. ft. each, and 14 two-bedroom units, of 620 sq. ft. each.  There are two sets of criteria for conditional use permits.  There are the objective criteria, which are similar to site plan standards and the subjective criteria.

 

            The site is near the corner of Dilloway and Eastman Avenue.  Just to the north of this site is the Knight Dental office and just to the north of that is Wolverine Bank.  The zoning in this area is Office Service all along Eastman Avenue on the east side of the road.  It is primarily single-family residential in all other directions.  There is a secondary drive on the north side on the revised drawing that was presented at the meeting.  There is vacant property to the south, Wallbridge Lane, which contains single family residential, is to the east.  The Knight Dental Office is to the north.  There is a detention pond proposed on the west side of the building. 

 

            In 1991, there was a consent judgment issued for this site.  Schools, churches, rooming houses, fire stations, public utility facilities and radio broadcasting studios are prohibited.  A 6-foot high brick wall is required to be built on the east side of the property.  Two and a half feet tall plantings have to be built on the Eastman Avenue frontage, at the time of development.  In 2001, an office use was built at Eastman and Dilloway.  The fence requirement was modified to use white vinyl.  In 2003, a two story, 27’ office use building was approved by City Council for 15,500 sq. ft. with 121 parking spaces and one driveway but was subsequently never built. 

 

            Mr. Young arrived at 7:14 p.m.

 

            Planning Terminology Review:

·         Use by right

o   Site plan approval only

·         Use with special standards

o   Site plan approval + specific objective standards

·         Conditional Use

o   Site plan approval + subjective standards

 

            Site Plan Facts:

·         Parcel partially wooded, partially scrub

·         3 stories, 38’ high – meets all setbacks

·         Adequate parking – 67 spaces proposed, 42 of which will be covered

·         Two drives, per ordinance – north driveway is one-way

·         Landscaping requirements are met, in fact they are highly exceeded

·         Preserving eastern 32’ of vegetation

·         Proposing fence 32’ west of the property line

·         There will be a joint access agreement on the south drive when that property is developed

·         Internal and external pedestrian circulation is all sufficient

·         Meets emergency access, drainage, public services, lighting requirements

 

            Non-discretionary site plan review standards:

            The structure is 82 feet from Eastman Avenue.  Parking is in the rear of the building.  There are now two drives proposed.  Landscaping on site includes adding 111 trees and 62 shrubs.  This development does comply with the district regulations including setback and height.  The farther back you go, the higher the building can be.  This building could be up to four stories high where it is currently located.  You will be able to see a structure 32 feet high.  The nearest drive is 550 feet to the south.  The north driveway is a right-turn only, which was required by MDOT.  Pedestrian circulation – there is sidewalk all the way around.  It goes all around the structure into the parking area.  The dumpster is screened and on the western side of the building.  Parking is adequate.  Exterior lighting – a photometric plan is required to be submitted.  The plan meets the screening requirements.  The applicant has offered to put up a brick wall any where, if it is required.  In the interest of maintaining as much foliage as possible, staff was looking at a different type of fence.  The entire development is planned in one phase.  There will be a sign but it will meet the requirements of the Zoning Ordinance.  This plan meets all the site plan review criteria.

 

            Conditional Land Use Criteria:

·         Protection of public health, safety and general welfare

·         Compatibility with surrounding land uses

·         Detrimental effects

·         Impact of traffic

·         Adequacy of public services

·         Protection of site characteristics

·         Compatibility with natural environment

·         Compatibility with the Master Plan and Zoning Ordinance

 

            Staff has tried to look at this plan and weigh it against what else could be there.  What other uses are permitted by right?  Banks and credit unions, barber/beauty shops, business services (with limitations), professional offices (no limitations), funeral homes, studios (music, dance, photo, decorating), dry cleaning (drop off/pick up) clinics (medical, dental, veterinary), activity center for the handicapped, residential inpatient treatment center, social service agency, dwelling units on upper floors of business establishments, parks and child care centers.  

 

            Staff recommends approval of this conditional use permit.  The proposed use is consistent with the Future Lane Use map of the city’s Master Plan.  The project promotes four goals of the Master Plan including (1) promote efficient and coordinated capital improvements; (2) encourage integration or mixture of appropriate uses to create great places, promote a healthy, walkable community, and reduce vehicle trips; (3) protect the long term stability of existing, quality neighborhoods; and (4) provide a diversity of housing types and costs to meet the needs of all age and income groups.  The proposed use as planned meets the intent and purpose of the Zoning Ordinance and the intent of the Office Service District to “serve as a transitional area between single family residential development and more intensive development.” 

 

            In staff’s opinion, the proposed use would not be generally detrimental to the general welfare of the adjacent parcels and neighborhood.  Residential properties to the west across Eastman will have a view of a structure that has a residential, as opposed to office or institutional character, and similar to existing development.  Other uses, with a greater height and with potentially more problematic characteristics, are permitted by right in this district.  The addition of a 38’ tall structure could help to block traffic noise.  The entire development has been moved 32’ west to provide additional distance between the parking area and abutting residential yards.  Eastman Avenue is a state highway with sufficient capacity to accommodate the anticipated additional trips without compromising the level of service.  The project promotes density, infill, and mixed uses on a long standing vacant site.  Increased density, infill and mixed uses are all desirable in a highly developed community and fundamentals of the principles of Smart Growth.

 

            Proposed Conditions:

 

            1.   The storm water management methods are designed and constructed in accordance with the City of Midland Engineering Department specifications.

            2.   All landscaping shall comply with Article 6 of the Zoning Ordinance.

            3.   All exterior lighting shall comply with Section 3.12 of the Zoning Ordinance.

            4.   All exterior signage shall comply with Article 8 of the Zoning Ordinance.

            5.   A soil and sedimentation control plan must be approved.

 

            Eighteen public comments in writing against this development have been received to date.  The Planning Commission action will be on September 27, 2011.  City Council will hold a public hearing on November 14, 2011.

 

            Shawn Pnacek asked about the court decree.  The only two aspects that are pertinent in this judgment are the masonry wall and the 2-1/2 foot high screening.  Ms. Winland stated that is correct.  The north drive is a one-way out only. 

 

            Mr. McLaughlin asked if there was an entrance to the dentist office next door.  Ms. Winland stated the access to the dental office is off Dilloway. 

 

            Jon Ledy, Apex Engineers, is representing Mr. DeShano.  When they first proposed the site, they only had one entrance to the site.  It was last week that Mr. Ledy had a long discussion with MDOT.  MDOT consented if the north driveway was a right-turn only driveway and, when the property to the south is developed, it must share the driveway to the south with this development so there would not be another driveway onto Eastman Avenue.  The detention pond was designed in such a way that it has a very shallow slope.  They wanted it to be usable and large, but shallow.  The slope is 1:15.  The idea is to have something that is pleasing to the eye.  They would like to have it walkable and usable by the residents.  The trash area will be shielded.  Around the dumpster, there is a lot of landscaping trying to hide it.  With regards to lighting, most of the lighting will be pole lighting.  The lights will be shielded so they do not shine onto neighboring properties.  They are planning for some carports and they will block the lighting to the east.  The 6-foot wall has to be substantial.  When they decided to keep that area natural, they moved the entire development 25 feet toward Eastman Avenue.  Now the carports are 35 feet from the rear property line. 

 

            Jeff Zettle, with DeShano Companies.  Mr. Zettle showed a pictured of how the building would conceptually look like from a camera set about 71 feet back from a neighboring fence, and 32 feet from the carport and a 6’ fence between that and the carport on Mr. Enszer’s deck.  They will be leaving all the mature trees in the 32 foot buffer area. 

 

            Gayle Hanna asked Mr. Ledy to explain what was on the site plan regarding the number of units.  He is planning to have the 49 units as planned.  Gary DeShano stated they are using that footprint, but they are still negotiating with MSHDA to get their approval.  The building plans themselves are very incomplete.  They are planning to accommodate one person per apartment, or approximately 75 people in these apartments.  Mrs. Hanna asked that, if a PILOT project was not approved, would this project still be feasible.  Mr. DeShano stated they have built a number of these projects without PILOTS but they are more feasible when they have a PILOT status.  Mrs. Hanna asked if they had considered using pervious paving, which would help with the drainage situation.  Mr. DeShano stated they would consider that.

 

            Mr. Senesac clarified that the changes that may be proposed are to the interior of the building.  Mr. DeShano stated that that was correct. 

 

            Edward Knight, business owner to the north of this property.  He stated that the land owners to the east agreed to allow him to have the vinyl fence.

 

            Richard Enszer, 5413 Wallbridge Lane, stated he and his family oppose this development due to the magnitude of the size of the building.  The City of Midland has spent a lot of money and time developing corridors in our city.  It does not transition nor is it compatible with the neighborhood.  There is no other building this size in this area.  The traffic in this area is very heavy.  Mr. Enszer feels this type of development is better suited outside the city.  They have also found that there are vacancies in senior housing complexes throughout the city.  They live directly behind this property to the east.  They are concerned about drainage, safety, crime, property value and the view from the second and third floor of the building in the winter time.  They feel a building very similar to Dr. Knight’s dentist office would be better suited for this site.  This blends better with the neighborhood.

 

            Chuck Plessner, 5504 Wallbridge, asked for a show of hands of the neighbors on Wallbridge and Eastman.  The residents are not negotiating with the developer.  There are currently no negotiations going on with the developer.  He would like to see some definition of a “transitional area” as defined for the Office Service zone. 

 

            Mike Skurski, 5400 Wallbridge Lane, is also opposed to this proposed development.  You are looking at putting up a structure the size of Midland High School’s football field.  It is a large building and is not in the character of the neighborhood.  He walked that area and there is nothing above two stories between the highway and Eastman Avenue.  This is a very high density development.  It will be a very congested area.  It will pour more traffic onto the state highway, which is sometimes backed up all the way to Dilloway Drive.  There was a fatality from someone crossing Eastman Avenue a number of years ago.  Public safety is a concern of the neighborhood. 

 

            Leslie Szymanski, lives at 602 E. Haley Street, which is about 2-1/2 blocks from Cleveland Manor.  There is noise day and night 7 days per week.  There are ambulances and fire trucks at all hours.  When you are not used to dealing with that kind of noise, it is very disruptive.  There is no good place for a garbage dumpster in a neighborhood. 

 

            Victor Finch, 1515 Dilloway, has lived in Midland for quite some time.  They used to live on Russell Street.  He has been hit twice on Eastman Avenue.  The traffic is backed up to Dilloway Drive now.  His friend tried to sell a place on Russell Street and it took him two years to sell it.

 

            Ron Parmele, 5415 Wallbridge Lane, has lived there since 1977.  He is opposed to this plan for low-income seniors.  A structure this size and height is not consistent with this strip of land that was designed for one-story offices.  All the development along there is one story.  No where on the east side of Eastman Avenue is there a 3-story building.  This street has a 45 mph speed limit.  People this age generally have diminished eyesight and slower reflexes.  Additional vehicles such as Dial-A-Ride would add to the traffic congestion.  A crossing guard at Dilloway Drive has been hit twice – by older drivers.  He is concerned that emergency vehicles would have difficulty getting into this area.  Let this project be done on Commerce Drive or on Jefferson Avenue. 

 

            Dan Divine, 1412 Brentwood Drive, stated that, last week when they met with Mr. DeShano, they said the peak would be at 38 feet.  Neighbors will see a 50 foot structure.  When he reads the discretionary standards, it looks like a list of what is wrong with this development in this area.  When he reads the consent decree, it states that a masonry wall will be built on the entire property.  He cannot just wave his hand over it.  He has to build the wall even on land he does not own.  The new structure is significantly taller than the one that was approved in 2003.  He calculates that this structure will be between 48 and 50 feet.  The population is declining and he has heard that there are vacancies in senior housing units in the community.  Mr. DeShano’s study was done two years ago.

 

            Christy Jones, 5403 Wallbridge Lane, stated she opposes the building of this apartment building.  Regarding the traffic, she already has difficulties turning onto Eastman Avenue.  She purposely avoids Family Fare and those shopping centers so she can turn right and go down to the mall area.  Her children already sleep with “sound machines”.  When they moved into their house, they were already concerned about noise off Eastman Avenue. 

 

            Paul Witt, 5408 Wallbridge Lane, is opposed to the plan.  He believes that there will be a bigger impact on the traffic on Eastman than was presented by staff.  He also feels the development does not fit the character of the neighborhood.

 

            Layne Mercer, 5505 Eastman Avenue, stated he is definitely opposed.

 

            Michael Wood, 5411 Wallbridge Lane.  When he purchased his home, he was told that the property behind him could be developed.  He figured one or two story office buildings along Eastman Avenue.  The traffic is definitely a hazard to children crossing to school.  He would not have purchased his property if this development had been there.

 

            Dr. James Hitt, 1410 Brentwood Drive, stated the contractor is requesting a “special use” so it is appropriate to look at this again.  He is from New York, New York.  He is surprised to think that such a structure is consistent with the Master Plan in this area.  He is also concerned about what it would look like if they built a brick wall.  It looks to him like, if they build a brick wall, the plan will look different.  If you are looking at public safety, you need to know the number of units that will be there.  You need to at least have a view of how many people will be living there.

 

            Mr. Ledy stated the plan that was presented might have shown a 42 foot high roof but, in talks with the developer, they have agreed that the building will not be higher than 38 feet.  Also, at the very beginning, they had a brick wall shown on the property line.  They can put a 6’ high brick wall right along the property line.  They moved it in 32 feet because they thought the neighbors would enjoy the greenery in that area. 

            With no further comments, the public hearing was closed.

 

4.   Old Business

 

      None

 

5.  Public Comments (unrelated to items on the agenda)

 

      None

 

6.   New Business

 

      a.   Conditional Use Permit No. 40, the request of Wilcox Professional Services on behalf of Matekel General Contracting for Wackerly Place, a 10 unit residential apartment development, zoning OS Office Service, located at 1100 West Wackerly Street.

 

            Mr. Baker stated this site will be 1.25 acres.  It is zoned Office Service.  Multiple-family residential is a conditional use in the Office Service District to reduce potential for future conflict or nuisance.  It is adjacent to office uses to the east, hotel/conference center to the west and single family residential to the south.  The property is the lone undeveloped parcel on that side of Wackerly Street.  It is adjacent to the Midland Resort and a couple medical offices to the east.  The site does have residential uses on the south side of Wackerly Street and it backs up to US-10.  It abuts Regional Commercial zoning.

 

            The parcel is currently heavily wooded.  There are 10 townhome units proposed (two five-unit buildings).  They will have 2-car garages with separate driveways.  It will be a private road with a 4-foot paved walking path.  The required landscaping is met.  Stormwater detention meets the requirements and a vehicle turn around is provided.

 

            Discretionary standards include:

·         Protection of public health, safety and general welfare

·         Compatibility with surrounding land uses

·         Detrimental effects

·         Impact of traffic

·         Adequacy of public services

·         Protection of site characteristics

·         Compatibility with Natural Environment

·         Compatibility with the Master Plan and Intent of Zoning Ordinance

     

            Staff recommendation is in support of the petition.  The city has received two written public comments in opposition to the petition, a petition with nine signatures, from seven addresses, expressing opposition to the project and three public hearing comments in opposition at the last Planning Commission meeting.

 

            This will go to City Council for a public hearing on October 24, 2011. 

 

            The site plan shows this is on the north side of W. Wackerly Street.  It will have a single driveway.  There will be five units on each side of the private drive.  The storm water detention area is on the west side of the parcel, abutting the Midland Resort parking lot.  There will be no dumpster on this particular site.  The front elevation will face inward to the site.  The rear elevation is that side which would be outward to the east or west side properties. 

 

            Eric Spitler, Wilcox Professional Services, stated they have not made any changes since the last Planning Commission meeting.  He showed an estimate of trip generations by this type of development.  The height of these buildings will be about 18 feet.  Mr. Tanzini asked about parking.  There will be no parking on the private street.  There will be spaces for two cars to park in each driveway.  There will be trash pick-up at each of these locations.  They plan to have some landscaping between the development and the street. 

 

            Mr. McLaughlin asked about an obscuring fence along the north and west property lines.  If they put a fence there, they would lose the trees that are already there. 

 

            Mr. Spitler stated the lighting will be mounted on the building.  Right now there is a 6’ fence right across the street. 

 

            Jim Schreiber, 1306 Wallen Street, stated he has driven in this area since the last meeting.  If you go over to Jefferson, you will see the same thing.  It is an eyesore.  It does not add to our city. 

 

            Mike Staloch, 1010 Pepperidge Court, stated it wasn’t about the number of units they could put on there, but how it would look.  If you have a 2-car garage today, you will only put one car in the garage and fill up the other side with “stuff”.  If there are children in there, we could be setting ourselves up for an accident in this area.

 

            Greg Matekel, Matekel, Inc., stated the only thing he would add would be some additional landscaping.  As this gets built, he can build a small berm with more pine trees, which is what he would do.  They will be his tenants so he will do as much for them as he can.  As it gets built, he will add to the landscaping plan as it allows. 

 

            Mr. Tanzini asked about residential development on the north side of Wackerly.  Most of the homes on the north side of Wackerly have been torn down and businesses have been built in their place.  Mr. Matekel stated there is a need for this.  He is trying to fulfill a need and he expects it to be successful or he wouldn’t be doing this.

 

            Motion by Senesac, seconded by Tanzini, to recommend to City Council the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 40, the request of Wilcox Professional Services on behalf of Matekel General Contracting for Wackerly Place, a 10 unit residential apartment development, zoned Office Service, located at 1100 West Wackerly Street.

 

            Mr. Senesac stated he is concerned about the limited parking.  There will be times when that may be an issue.  He would also like to see more vegetation.  However, it meets all the criteria.  This is a small lot and the uses it will allow are limited. 

 

            Mr. Stewart agrees with Mr. Senesac.  He is familiar with the property to the east.  He has never seen a lot of cars in that area.  He sees no reason not to vote for it.

 

            Mrs. Hanna stated she cannot vote for this.  She thinks the devastation of the trees is unacceptable, there are too many units planned for the size of the lot, and she does not know where the run-off is going to go.  There is no area for children to play.  It is not a good fit for this location.

 

            Mr. Pnacek stated it is hard to keep trees when you have a small site like that.  He believes the petitioner that he would want to screen his clients from a huge hotel right adjacent to it.  You only have single family residential across the road.  He is in favor of this plan. 

 

            Mr. Mead states he does not exactly agree with Mrs. Hanna but he still has some problems with it.  It needs more screening.  His concern is with the road side and the lack of screening.  If there were some opaque screening across the front he would vote for it.

 

      Vote:

 

      YEAS:       McLaughlin, Pnacek, Senesac, and Stewart,

      NAYS:       Hanna, Mead, Tanzini and Young

      ABSENT:  None

      VACANCY:  One

 

      Motion was denied 4-4

           

      b.   Zoning Text Amendment No. 153, initiated by Joseph F. Fiordaliso, to amend Section 2.02, Section 14.02 and Section 9.03 of the City of Midland Zoning Ordinance to define and permit chickens and ducks in the single family zoning districts provided certain standards are met.

    

         Mr. Baker described the proposed zoning text amendment initiated by Joseph F. Fiordaliso, of 700 Linwood Drive, to permit chickens and ducks with special standards in single family residential zoning districts of the City of Midland.  He was found to have on his property at 700 Linwood Drive, approximately 15 chickens and ducks in violation of Article 14 of the City of Midland Zoning Ordinance.  Currently, the keeping of any fowl as defined by the City of Midland Zoning Ordinance is expressly prohibited.

 

         The main question at issue is:  Are chickens and ducks compatible with residential land uses or could they be considered compatible with possible restrictions?

 

         The definition of “domestic animal” would have to be amended in the Zoning Ordinance.  Similarly, it would be taken out of the “Farm Animal” designation.  Staff has identified a number of stipulations, as follows:

 

·   Owner must obtain a permit from the City of Midland

·   Keep no more than fifteen (15) chickens, ducks or combination thereof

·   The principal use of the property is for a single-family residence

·   No person shall keep any rooster

·   No person shall slaughter any chickens on the premises.

·   Chickens or ducks must be kept in an enclosure

·   The enclosure must be 10 feet from the property line

 

Potential identified issues:

 

·   Noise (particularly with ducks)

·   Odor/waste storage & removal

·   Attraction of rodents, raccoons, opossums, etc.

·   Appearance (materials & cleanliness) of enclosures

·   Enforcement

·   Health concerns

·   Permitting/banding?

·   Chickens, ducks or both?

·   If so, how many are appropriate?

        

         How was the miniature pig issue handled?

·   ZTA No. 150 – Petition to amend the definition of “pet” to include miniature pig.  Planning Commission recommended against the petition.  Petition was rescinded.

·   ZTA No. 151 – Petition to amend the Zoning Ordinance to make “keeping of a miniature pig” a conditional land use in residential zoning districts.  Planning Commission and City Council voted to deny the petition.

·   Ordinance No. 1711 – Amendment to City of Midland Code of Ordinances (Article III) permitting the licensing of miniature pigs approved by City Council.

 

               Staff recommendation is for approval (with reduced number of animals permitted).

               The city has received one additional written comment in opposition and one in support.  City Council will hold a public hearing on October 24th. 

 

               Mr. Senesac stated there are two issues tonight.  One is the language for the ordinance and the other is the approval or denial of the request.  Mr. Baker stated that is a true statement. 

 

               Joseph Fiordaliso, 700 Linwood Drive, Midland, stated he understands where the Commission is coming from.  The Planning Commission has put a lot of time into the consideration of this issue.  He wants to thank the Commission for whatever decision they feel is appropriate.  He would like to keep his chickens and ducks. 

 

               Mark Szymanski, 602 E. Haley Street, stated he is for the proposal.  There is a lot to be said for having hens but no roosters.  The figures he has seen are 3-4 chickens equals about one dog in the amount of waste.  City staff from Madison, Wisconsin stated they have fewer than 10 complaints per year and enforcement is minimal.  Mr. Szymanski showed pictures of chicken “houses”.  He has documentation that it can raise property values.

 

               Jacob Szymanski, 602 E. Haley, is for the chickens.  He has a couple of ordinances from Kalamazoo and Traverse City.  Both of them allow chickens.  Traverse City allows up to four hens.  Chickens must remain within an enclosed shelter, located no less than 25 feet from the neighbor’s property. 

 

               Anthony Wahl, 4410 Hampshire Street, is also in support of this zoning change.  They are easy and inexpensive to maintain.  Eggs that are fresh are more nutritious than store bought.  Chickens also eat bugs from the environment.  If composted first, they produce the best fertilizer.  They home school their children and this would also be an educational opportunity.  Many other locations throughout the state and country allow chickens. 

 

               Lesley Szymanski, 602 E. Haley Street, stated that there have been letters to the editor about attracting rodents or foxes.  We have rats in Midland even though no one wants to admit it.  We have raccoons already.  Having chickens is not going to increase or decrease the numbers of rodents that we get.  The way we take care of our dog food, cat food or bird food is what is going to control the rodent population.  Chickens are by far quieter than a dog.  Midland has been a “green community” long before it was “the thing to do”.  Chickens eat insects and would provide fertilizer without using insecticides and pesticides.  There is a website called “backyardchickens.com” with further information. 

 

               Judy Kaminski, 616 Linwood Drive, stated there is no smell and no noise coming from Joseph Fiordaliso’s property.  It is his hobby.  She has no problems with it.

 

Mrs. Hanna stated that a township adjacent to the City of Midland, banned chickens.  They have agricultural areas where chickens are permitted – not in residential areas.  Mrs. Hanna stated she has five pages of diseases that are potentially passed by chickens. 

 

Mr. Senesac stated he knows quite a bit about chickens.  He has had chickens in the past.  There are fantastic looking chicken coops.  We didn’t see any pictures of horrible looking chicken coops.  He thinks there are health issues, and he has had a number of people come up to him and say they sure do not want chickens in the yards next to them.  He will vote against it.

 

Lowell McLaughlin stated he will vote in favor of it with restrictions, of perhaps 6-8 chickens.  He cannot support ducks due to noise.  He can support up to six chickens.  He thinks 3-5 years for permitting of chickens would be sufficient.  What would regulate the quality of a chicken coop? 

 

Judd Tanzini stated he will support up to six chickens.  Mr. Young stated he spoke to some people in Traverse City and they don’t have a problem with it, but he cannot support ducks or more than six chickens.  He thinks big cities would have more problems with it than smaller cities.  Mr. Stewart stated he will also support up to six chickens.  He is surprised it has not come up before this.  He will support it with the limitations of up to six chickens and no ducks.  Mr. Mead stated that his friends are definitely not in support of chickens.  There are many people who do not want them next door to them.  He is not in favor of it.  Mr. Pnacek stated he was against this at first, but he will now vote to support this for 4-6 chickens, but no ducks.

 

         Motion by McLaughlin, seconded by Tanzini to recommend to City Council the approval of Zoning Text Amendment No. 153, initiated by Joseph F. Fiordaliso, to amend Section 2.02, Section 14.02 and Section 9.03 of the City of Midland Zoning

 

            Ordinance to define and permit chickens and ducks in the single family zoning districts provided certain standards are met. With the restrictions of up to six chickens and no ducks.

 

      Vote:

 

      YEAS:       McLaughlin, Pnacek, Stewart, Tanzini and Young

      NAYS:       Hanna, Mead and Senesac

      ABSENT:  None

      VACANCY:  One

 

      Motion was approved 5-3.

 

7.   Communications

 

      None

     

8.   Report of the Chairperson

 

      None

 

9.  Report of the Planning Director

 

     2 Commissioners signed up for annual conference.

 

10. Adjourn               

 

     Adjournment at 10:10 p.m. was unanimously approved.

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Keith Baker, AICP, CFM

Director of Planning & Community Development

 

MINUTES ARE NOT FINAL UNTIL APPROVED BY THE PLANNING COMMISSION