CITY OF MUSKEGON
October 13, 2016
Chairman T. Michalski called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m. and roll was taken.
MEMBERS PRESENT: T. Michalski, B. Mazade, J. Montgomery-Keast, F. Peterson, S.
Gawron, J. Doyle
MEMBERS ABSENT: Excused: B. Smith, B. Larson, E. Hood
STAFF PRESENT: M. Franzak, D. Renkenberger
OTHERS PRESENT: D. Mosher, 2515 Pine Grove; C. Drake, 1309 Randolph
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
A motion that the minutes of the regular meeting of September 15, 2016 be approved was made by J.
Montgomery-Keast, supported by F. Peterson and unanimously approved.
Hearing, Case 2016-14: Request for a special land use permit to expand a nonconforming structure
not more than 30% at 2515 Pine Grove St. M. Franzak presented the staff report. The property is
zoned R-1, Single Family Residential. The lot measures 61’ x 98’ and is considered a buildable lot.
However, the structure is considered non-conforming because it does not meet the 30-foot rear setback
requirement. The garage is considered the rear of the building and is set back 6’6” from the property
line. Non-conforming structures can be expanded up to 30% with a special land use permit form the
Planning Commission. The area that the applicant is requesting to expand is located within the required
30-foot rear setback; therefore, a special use permit is required. The applicant proposes to remove the
breezeway and continue the east and west walls of the garage to the south to connect to the house in
order to make a two-stall garage. The applicant already started the demolition of the building, which
would normally cause issues since approval had not been granted and they had begun to remove the
non-conforming part of the structure. However, they do still have the northern wall of the garage
standing, so staff feels that they have not removed enough of the structure to cause a problem. The
addition totals 98 feet, which is well under 30% of the existing structure. Notice letters were sent to
properties within 300 feet of this property. At the time of this writing, staff had received one call from
a neighbor who is in favor of the addition.
D. Mosher explained his project and stated that he hadn’t been aware that Planning Commission
approval was required before he could start. C. Drake was a neighbor and stated that he was in favor
of the request.
A motion to close the public hearing was made by J. Montgomery-Keast, supported by F. Peterson and
A motion that the Special Land Use Permit to expand the non-conforming structure at 2515 Pine Grove
St no more than 30% be approved as proposed, was made by J. Montgomery-Keast, supported by S.
Gawron and unanimously approved, with T. Michalski, B. Mazade, J. Montgomery-Keast, F. Peterson,
S. Gawron, and J. Doyle voting aye.
Hearing, Case 2016-15: Staff-initiated request to amend Article XI (B-2, Convenience & Comparison
Business District) of the zoning ordinance to change “private clubs, lodge halls, social & similar
organizations” from a principal use permitted to a special land use permitted. M. Franzak presented
the staff report. A previous case had uncovered a contradiction in the zoning ordinance. Private clubs,
lodge halls and similar uses are currently allowed as a use by right in B-2, Convenience & Comparison
Business districts. However, they are only allowed under a special use permit in B-4, General Business
districts, which usually allows for more intense uses than B-2 districts. Also, the ordinance states that
all principal uses permitted in B-2 districts are allowed as a use by right in B-4 districts. This is
contradictory since you must get a special use permit to operate a private club/lodge hall in B-4
districts. Staff is proposing to amend the ordinance to allow private clubs/lodge halls as a special use
permitted in B-2 districts rather than a use by right. These types of uses can sometimes cause problems
with parking, noise and civil disturbances, so it would be in the City’s best interest to allow them as a
special land use. This would allow the Planning Commission to either set limitations on the use or
revoke the permit in the event of recurring problems at the location.
A motion to close the public hearing was made by S. Gawron, supported by J. Doyle and unanimously
A motion that the proposed amendment to Section 1100 of the City of Muskegon Zoning Ordinance to
allow private clubs, lodge halls & similar uses as a special use permitted and not a principal use
permitted in a B-2 district, be recommended to the City Commission for approval was made by J.
Doyle, supported by S. Gawron and unanimously approved, with T. Michalski, B. Mazade, J.
Montgomery-Keast, F. Peterson, S. Gawron, and J. Doyle voting aye
The Mayor thanked M. Franzak and Planning Department intern J. Pesch for their work on a top-rated
presentation on Form Based Code zoning and parking given by the Mayor at a conference in California.
Revisions to lot size requirements – M. Franzak distributed a map showing undersized residential lots
in the downtown area. He explained some of the issues with the non-conforming lots and stated that
he was working on revisions to the zoning ordinance to reduce the lot size required for buildable lots.
This would also require revisions to minimum building sizes, setbacks and lot coverage. Proposed
changes will be brought before the Planning Commission once they are finalized.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:29 p.m.