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



1.   Roll Call

PRESENT:  Hanna, Heying, McLaughlin, Mead, Pnacek, Senesac, Tanzini, and Young

ABSENT:    Stewart        

OTHERS PRESENT: Cindy Winland, Contract Planner, Cheri King, Community Development Specialist, and five others.


2.   Approval of Minutes

Moved by Young, seconded by Heying, to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of November 8, 2011. Motion passed unanimously.

3.   Public Hearings


      a.   Zoning Ordinance Revisions


            Cindy Winland presented the 2012 proposed Zoning Ordinance text changes. 

·         Transitional Housing – Modify the definition to recognize the unique nature of Emergency Shelters. (Article 2 – Definitions). Senesac requested that the words, “…but participation in programs is not mandated.”

·         Airport Zoning Ordinance – Add reference to Tri City Joint Airport Ordinance as controlling regulations within zoning. (Page 3-1).

·         Open Porches – Permit existing uncovered porches to be covered provided they meet setback requirements. (Article 3, Table 3.2, 3.e.)

·         Private Road Width – Table 3.8:  Minimum paved road widths for private roads would be 24 feet to accommodate fire trucks in case of emergency.

·         Parking Cooperation – In the case of new development, permit the Planning Commission to require shared access and/or shared parking to further access management goals. (Page 5-3).

·         Parking – Delete regulations for obsolete terms.

·         Fences – Change the way the height of a fence is measured (Article 7, 7.02 E.) (Page 7-2).

·         Fences – Table 7.1: Required obscuring wall or fence height – The maximum height of a fence would be four feet in height. (Page 7-2)

·         Fences – The Planning Director shall have the discretion to … permit fences up to 6’ in the required street side yard. (Page 7-3)

·         Fences – Fences located in required front or side street yards shall not exceed four feet in height above grade.  Fences located outside of the required front yard and in front of the principal structure shall be decorative in nature and constructed so as not to create the appearance of a wall in the front of the house.  McLaughlin suggested a definition of “decorative” should be added.

·         Garage Sale Signs – Revise the zoning text to match the 2008 adopted Garage Sale sign rules (Page 8-7).

·         Site Development Standards – Nursing Homes, Convalescent Homes, Residential Treatment Centers, Transitional Housing and Day Shelters – Location and Number:  Nonresidential uses as listed in this section may not be located within one thousand (1,000’) feet of a school or Day Care Center, excluding Nursing and Convalescent Homes.

·         Downtown Northside Overlay – Make parking locations consistent with Downtown Overlay District.  No parking space or maneuvering land shall be permitted within ten (10) feet of any street property line.  (Page 21-19)

·         Permit Auto Sales in IA District. (Page 23-3)

·         Require Color Renderings – Section 27.03 – Site Plan Review Applications and Procedures.


            Planning Commission reviewed text changes as a part of general information on November 8, 2011.  They held a public hearing on December 13, 2011.  The Planning Commission will make a recommendation to City Council on January 10, 2012.  City Council will schedule a public hearing on January 30, 20112.  City Council will hold the public hearing and will act on the amendments on February 20, 2012.


            No one spoke either in favor of or in opposition to these zoning changes.


4.   Old Business


a.    Zoning Petition No. 576, initiated by MLR Engineering on behalf of Niche Property to rezone property at 4671 South Saginaw Road from Residential A1 zoning to Regional Commercial zoning. 


Ms. Winland showed an aerial photograph of the subject property.  The property is located at 4671 S. Saginaw Road.  The applicant would like to change the zoning from RA1 to Regional Commercial.  This parcel was annexed into the city in 1995 and took on city zoning in 1996.  This parcel has been zoned Regional Commercial since it was annexed and given City zoning in 1996.   


One person called the Planning Department to speak in favor of the rezoning.  This individual was from the church behind this property.  There has been a delay acting on this petition resulting from the need to resurvey the parcel to determine the true legal description.  This has been completed so the action on the rezoning can take place. 


Mrs. Hanna is concerned that rezoning this would be further encroachment into the residential areas.  She feels this area has a more residential nature.  At Mrs. Hanna’s request, Winland distributed a chart showing a comparison between uses permitted by right in the NC and RC districts.  Mrs. Hanna noted that all the additional uses noted on the chart would be permitted on this property and she doesn’t know if they would be compatible with the surrounding residential uses.


Mike Rybicki, MLR Engineering, stated he has read staff’s comments.  They do not disagree with anything staff has stated.  The business that currently exists on the RC piece of property would like to expand onto this property.  It is under the same ownership. 


Maroon Hahickian, property owner – Stated he discussed this rezoning request with the property owner next door at the skate shop and he is in favor of this rezoning. 


No one spoke either in favor of or in opposition to this petition.


            Motion by Senesac, seconded by Pnacek, to recommend to City Council the approval of Zoning Petition No. 576 initiated by MLR Engineering on behalf of Niche Property to rezone property at 4671 South Saginaw Road from Residential A1 zoning to Regional Commercial zoning. 


            Mrs. Hanna stated she still has concerns about Regional Commercial moving into the residential areas.  She is concerned about what could go there once it’s done.  Mr. Mead stated he thinks it is an addition to what is there now and will not change the character of the area at all.  Mr. Heying stated he does not see an influx of either multi-family or single-family.  It seems to be an extension of what exists already.  Mr. Tanzini stated he is in support of it.  Mr.  Senesac stated that we have these areas in various parts of the city that we may or may not desire to expand.  He is generally in support of this petition. 




            YEAS:             Hanna, Heying, McLaughlin, Mead, Pnacek, Senesac, Tanzini

                                    and Young

            NAYS:             None

            ABSENT:        Stewart


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




6.   New Business




7.   Communications


      Planning and Zoning News was distributed.  A letter was received regarding the Community Development Block Grant Program funding opportunities. 


8.   Report of the Chairperson






9.  Report of the Planning Director


·         Eastman Road Apartments – was turned down by City Council by a vote of 4-1.

·         Sliding scale signage, brought forth by Dow Kokam, was unanimously approved by City Council.

·         There is an educational opportunity for training on signage in Frankenmuth on January 19th.  Heying, Senesac and Mead expressed interest in attending.   


10. Adjourn               


     Adjourned at 8:12 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,





Cynthia E. Winland, AICP, PCP

Consultant Planner