July 22, 2004




A meeting was conducted by the Oshtemo Charter Township Planning Commission on Thursday, July 22, 2004, commencing at approximately 7:00 p.m. at the Oshtemo Charter Township Hall.

MEMBERS PRESENT: Neil G. Sikora, Chairperson
Deborah L. Everett
Lee Larson
Kathleen Garland-Rike
Terry Schley
James Turcott

Also present were Jodi Stefforia, Planning Director; Mary Lynn Bugge, Township Planner; Patricia R. Mason, Township Attorney; and ten other interested persons.


The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m.


Mr. Larson moved to approve the Agenda as submitted. Mr. Schley seconded the motion, and the motion carried unanimously.


The Planning Commission considered the minutes of the meeting of July 8, 2004. Ms. Everett moved to approve the minutes as submitted, and Mr. Schley seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.


The Planning Commission considered special exception use and site plan review of a proposed amendment to the West Pointe Condominium project on North 10th Street. The site is located in the "R-3" Residence District zoning classification, consisting of 30 acres, and comprising Parcel Nos. 3905-13-125-001 through 3905-13-125-115.The developer is proposing to replace 58 previously approved dwelling units with nine 10,000 square foot office buildings. It was noted that the item had been tabled from the meeting of May 27, 2004.

The Report of the Planning Department is incorporated herein by reference. Ms. Bugge noted that when the Planning Commission tabled the action, it did so to provide the applicant, Granger Group, time to resolve outstanding issues not in compliance with the original approval and submit documentation in support of the amendment.

Some of the outstanding issues that needed to be addressed in order to bring the site into compliance with the Township approval of the original site plan granted on October 16, 2000, and to proceed with the evaluation of the current request are as follows:

(1) Addressing the Township Engineer's concerns regarding the sewer system,

(2) Addressing the Township Engineer's concerns regarding the storm water system,

(3) Stabilizing and maintaining the entire site to prevent further erosion and approve its appearance,

(4) Removing dead and dying trees and vegetation and replacing them with appropriate plant material, and

(5) Completing the paving of the existing drives.

It was noted that little, if any, progress had been made at the site. Further, the Township Staff had not been provided with the information and plans previously requested to support the requested amendment. It was noted that the Action Plan submitted by the Granger Group to Township Staff in February of 2004, had been discussed by the applicant with Staff during a meeting held in March. However, none of the Action Plan items had actually been completed. Ms. Bugge reviewed the options of the Planning Commission which included: granting the applicant's request, tabling the request to allow additional time, and denial of the request.

There was discussion of Section 60.206 which states that no application for special exception use permit, which has been denied by the Planning Commission, shall be resubmitted from the Planning Commission's denial, except on the grounds of new evidence or proof of changed circumstances or conditions.

Mr. Turcott asked whether there had been any contact made with the applicants. Ms. Bugge stated that she had been told twice by applicant's representatives that plans would be coming to the Township, but none had yet been received.

Andy Menken, with the Granger Group, was present as representative for the applicant. Mr. Menken stated that he had been advised by the landscape architect and the engineer that the plans had been sent to the Township the previous Friday. The applicant was requesting that the matter be tabled again to allow for additional time to address outstanding issues. The applicant's representative could provide no answers as to why the physical activities needed to bring the site into compliance with the current approval had not been completed. He stated that the applicant had cleared the vegetation between Pond 5 and West Village Blvd.

Ms. Garland-Rike expressed concern that there was standing water on some of the streets within the project.

Mr. Larson expressed concern that the applicant had not even addressed the items listed in its own Action Plan. The applicant's representative stated that he had been trying to produce plans for the site work prior to completion of the actual physical work. He had been on the project for only about a month and a half.

The Chairperson stated that he felt that the Planning Commission had worked with the applicant extensively to bring the project to some level of acceptability. He felt that it would be appropriate to deny the application. Mr. Schley agreed, stating that the applicant had not acted to bring the current phase of development up to standard with the previous approval and had not presented sufficient information for the Planning Commission to consider the next phase.

Mr. Schley moved to deny a special exception use permit and site plan approval based upon the failure of the applicant to bring the site into compliance with the existing approval, and the failure of the applicant to support the application for amendment with adequate information. Ms. Garland-Rike seconded the motion.

The Chairperson asked for public comment, and Kasper VanderVeen stated that he was a resident of North 10th Street. In his opinion, the developers did not care about the residents of the area. He felt the site was a mess, and that the applicant had been moving a lot of dirt, but doing nothing to improve the look of the site. He felt the Township should consider the welfare of the current residents. The Chairperson pointed out that the Planning Commission was doing what it could to enforce the original approval by denying any amendments.

Ed Hilton thanked the Planning Commission for its motion, but wondered what could be done about the mosquitoes. It was suggested that Mr. Hilton consult with the County Health Department. It was noted that the Township does not have an ordinance addressing mosquitoes.

Bernard Zwart stated that, in his opinion, the original pond had been built too close to the entrance road. The applicant had moved the original location but never put in a berm to contain the water, and therefore, it had run into the area of the trees, thereby killing the vegetation. He felt that the applicant was not a good neighbor and not good for the community. He thanked the Planning Commission for its motion.

Upon a vote on the motion, the motion carried unanimously.


The Planning Commission considered special exception use and site plan amendment regarding a proposed automobile sales showroom with outdoor display at 5900 Stadium Drive. The subject property is located in the "C" Local Business District zoning classification, and is Parcel No. 3905-25-305-045.

The Report of the Planning Department is incorporated herein by reference.

Ms. Stefforia pointed out that the Planning Commission had approved the proposed demolition of the existing Deep Sea Aquarium building for construction of a new Jaguar and Land Rover showroom facility. The Zoning Board of Appeals had granted a variance to allow the new building to be located in the same location as the existing building, which does not satisfy the supplemental setback requirements from the north property line.

The applicant was seeking special exception use renewal for the outdoor display at the site since the previous approval had expired. Additionally, the applicant was proposing that the existing building not be demolished but rather remodeled. The use of the property would be for used car sales and not Jaguar and Land Rover sales as previously planned.

Ms. Stefforia pointed out that the site plan was essentially the same as previously approved and reviewed. She noted that the previous approval had provided that service to vehicles be performed in the Metro Toyota building to the east and not in this particular building. Therefore, she suggested that the Planning Commission discuss the "delivery area" and "prep area" with the applicant. It was noted that the parcel in question would be combined with the Metro Toyota property.

Ms. Stefforia reviewed the criteria of Section 82.800. Ms. Stefforia stated that the biggest change to the site plan was to require both sidewalks and bike paths. These had been shown on the plan. The lighting would be established at the site pursuant to a previously approved variance. She noted that a Landscape Plan had been received from the applicant.

Ms. Stefforia stated that the Planning Commission should consider that this is an expansion of an existing use when considering the criteria for special exception use renewal.

Ms. Stefforia stated that written comments had been received from neighbors of the site. The Condominium Association was concerned that the site would be used for used car rather than for new car sales. The Condominium Association was also concerned about proposed signage and wanted the repair of the existing fence or establishment of a new fence. The Association was concerned about the hours of operation and speakers at the site. Neighbors to the north had expressed written concerns regarding the lighting, noise and establishment of additional parking.

Daryl Rynd was present on behalf of the applicant. With regard to the "prep" and "delivery" areas, he stated that there would be no service on the site, and that these areas would be for hand washing and final detailing of cars for delivery. He stated that there had been no final decision from Jaguar and Land Rover, and therefore, the applicant may request that a Jaguar and Land Rover display take place at the property in the future. With regard to lighting, speakers and signage, he stated that these were the same as originally approved for the site. The use, itself, was essentially the same, and would always have included a delivery and prep area.

In his opinion, the final steps for delivering the car to the customer was not a "service element". He did not feel that the change in the line of cars to be located at the site would alter the impact on neighboring properties. He stated that the cars to be displayed were essentially the same as those displayed on the adjacent property.

Mr. Schley questioned the applicant's representative concerning the prep area, and it was noted that this area would have hand washing available but no automated car wash. Todd DeNooyer reiterated that there were no plans to put an automated car wash in the prep area at this time. It was stated that, if the applicant sought to establish an automated car wash on this site in the future, the applicant would need to return for an amendment of its approval. Mr. DeNooyer stated that the hours of operation for the site would mirror those of the Toyota and Chevrolet locations. The applicant would make improvements to the fence to make it "look nice". The applicant indicated that it would comply with the Township's signage provisions.

Mr. Schley commented that he felt that the establishment of an automated car wash, in association with customer after-purchase car washing, at the site would be a traffic generator, and would therefore be a factor in determining whether special exception use should be approved.

As to outdoor speakers, it was noted that there is a system, but that any speakers would be established on the front side of the building toward Stadium Drive.

Ms. Garland-Rike was concerned that this site was closer to the residential use than the Toyota and Chevrolet sites. Ms. Stefforia disagreed, stating that she believed it was further from residential use. Further, it was noted that no complaints had been received from the neighbors regarding the existing facilities.

Ms. Everett commented that she felt that, as long as the speakers were established at the front of the building and operated during normal business hours, they would be "O.K.".

Mr. Turcott had questions regarding the repaving of the site, and the applicant stated that the whole site would be repaved when regrading was completed. The applicant stated that it was the intent to keep the shell of the existing building and remodel it, but might seek to replace the entire building in the existing footprint.

No public comment was offered, and the public hearing was closed.

The Chairperson reviewed the special exception use criteria.

After further discussion, Ms. Everett moved to renew the special exception use approval and to approve site plan amendment, incorporating the original conditions of the site plan and special use approvals in addition to the following:

(1) No vehicle service activities would take place at the site.

(2) It was understood that hand wash and detailing for delivery would take place in the "delivery" and "prep" areas, but no customer after-purchase car wash service would take place on site.

(3) It was understood that the applicant would work with the Condominium Association to upgrade or maintain the fence.

(4) Any speakers associated with the speaker system at the site would be directed toward Stadium Drive and limited to the front side of the building.

(5) A sidewalk must be established along Quail Run Drive pursuant to Section 78.650.

Mr. Turcott seconded the motion, and the motion carried unanimously.

Planning Commissioner Comments

There was no other business, and the Chairperson asked for Planning Commissioner comments.

There was a discussion of possible enforcement methods for the 10th Street West Pointe Condominium site.

There was a discussion of the purpose of the "Transitional" zoning classification.


There being no further business to come before the Planning Commission, the meeting was adjourned at 8:45 p.m.



Kathleen Garland-Rike, Secretary

Minutes prepared:
July 26, 2004
Minutes approved:
, 2004