CHARTER TOWNSHIP OF OSHTEMO

TOWNSHIP BOARD

PLANNING COMMISSION

ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

 

JOINT MEETING

 

November 18, 1997

 

The quarterly meeting of the Township Board, Planning Commission and Zoning Board of Appeals was held at the Township Hall. The meeting was called to order by Supervisor Fleckenstein at 7:00 p.m.

 

TOWNSHIP BOARD:

R. Fleckenstein
E. Branch
L. Brown
N. Anderson
D. Bushouse
F. Johnson

PLANNING COMMISSION:

W. Dennie, Chr
T. Corakis
L. Meeuwse
M. Loy
K. Heisig
E. Heiny-Cogswell

ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS:

T. Brodasky

Also present was Becky Harvey, Township Planning Department and twelve interested citizens.

 

HISTORIC RESOURCES SURVEY REPORT

Supervisor Fleckenstein introduced Pam O’Connor, a local preservationist, who addressed the Boards regarding the Historic Resources Survey that she organized.

The goal was to identify the Township’s potential historic resources and to prepare a report for the Township. She explained that the study was completed over a period of eighteen months. She was assisted by Beth Timmerman, a senior at Western Michigan University, who worked as an intern for the Township this past summer. Stephanie Wood, a recent student at Western, prepared a report on the history of Oshtemo Township.

The survey was conducted by a small group of volunteers who spent many hours reviewing the property record cards of the Township. They identified about 300 buildings that are over 40 years old. Beth then selected 21 buildings that were 50 years old or older to include in the study.

Pam gave an oversee of What is Historic? and why we might want to preserve it. She made reference to the History of Oshtemo Township, prepared by Stephanie and included in the report binder that each Board Member received.

A historical report of the 21 properties, aided by slides, was then presented by Beth. She pointed out at least four architectural styles that can be found in buildings in Oshtemo.

After a short break, Pam offered answers to Why should we preserve Oshtemo’s Historic Resources?:

Historic resources are assets, not liabilities.

Historic resources help define a community’s character.

Historic resources help young residents learn about our history.

Historic resources represent old architectural styles and historic building practices.

Recognition and protection of historic resources help protect the owner’s investment.

Historic resources encourage better quality design in new nearby buildings.

Protection and recognition of historic resources helps protect the environment

Rehabilitation of historic resources provides more local jobs.

 

She then reviewed five tools that can be used to recognize and protect our historic resources, should the Board decide to do so.

1. Planning and Zoning

2. Economic Incentive Tools

3. Historic Preservation Easements

4. Educational and Recognition Tools

5. Regulation

There was also an explanation of how a Local Historic District Commission works and facts about the HDC of the City of Kalamazoo.

She urged Oshtemo to continue to be a leader by moving forward with a plan to protect our Historic Resources.

Some people in the audience also urged the Board to take the needed action for this protection.

There was no further business. The meeting adjourned at 9:05 p.m.

 
ELAINE J. BRANCH, CMC Attested: RON FLECKENSTEIN
Township Clerk Supervisor

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