CITY OF MUSKEGON
ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS
July 14, 2015
Vice Chairman E. Fordham called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m. and roll was taken.
MEMBERS PRESENT: B. Larson, E. Carter, E. Fordham, S. Warmington, T. Halterman,
MEMBERS ABSENT: R. Hilt, excused
STAFF PRESENT: M. Franzak, D. Renkenberger
OTHERS PRESENT: P. Bergeman, 15703 Rannes, Spring Lake
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
A motion that the minutes of the regular meeting of June 9, 2015 be approved was made by S.
Warmington, supported by E. Carter and unanimously approved.
Hearing; Case 2015-05: Request for a variance from Section 1100 of the Zoning Ordinance to
allow a single family residential home in a B-2, Convenience and Comparison Business district
at 631 E. Laketon Avenue. M. Franzak presented the staff report. This property is located in a
B-2, Convenience and Comparison Business District, and single-family homes are not allowed in
this district. The building on the property was used as a single-family residential home for many
years, but was eventually rezoned to B-2. It was then used as several different office-type uses.
A rezoning back to R-1, Single-Family Residential is not possible because it does not meet the
minimum lot size standards of 6,000 square feet; the lot measures 37’x 128’, for a total of 4,736
square feet. The property also does not meet the minimum lot size requirements for B-2 zones,
which is 10,890 square feet. The request is to allow a single-family residential use on the
property while continuing the B-2 zoning. Notice was sent to all property owners within 300
feet. Staff did not received any comments from the public. Staff recommends approval of the
request because the structure was originally built as a single-family residential home and the
ordinance amendments have caused the hardship.
W. German asked if a business could still be run there, if the variance was approved. M. Franzak
stated that a small business would still be allowed, per the B-2 zoning. The variance would
allow a residential use in the B-2 district. P. Bergeman stated that he wanted to turn this into a
single family home, clean up the property, and either rent it or sell it. W. German asked if the
inside layout was conducive to a single family home. P. Bergeman explained the layout, stating
that it should not be too difficult to convert it back to a residence. W. German asked if the back
paved parking lot was part of the property. P. Bergeman stated that it was.
Zoning Board of Appeals Minutes – 7/14/15 1
A motion to close the public hearing was made by S. Warmington, supported by W. German and
E. Fordham asked staff if the house would require a certificate of occupancy before it could be
used as a residence. M. Franzak stated that it would. He also stated that this property would be
suitable for residential use, since it was on the edge of a residential neighborhood and it was
originally built as a single family home. Since there were residences all around this parcel, the
variance should not cause any hardship to the neighborhood. It was not originally zoned as a
business, but rather the zoning was changed after the house was built.
The following findings of fact were offered: a) That there are exceptional or extraordinary
circumstances or conditions applying to the property in question or to the intended use of the
property that do not apply generally to other properties or class of uses in the same zoning
district, b) That such dimensional variance is necessary for the preservation and enjoyment of a
substantial property right possessed by other properties in the same zoning district and in the
vicinity, c) That the authorizing of such dimensional variance will not be of substantial detriment
to adjacent property and will not materially impair the purposes of this chapter or the public
interest, d) That the alleged difficulty is caused by the Ordinance and has not been created by any
person presently having an interest in the property, or by any previous owner, e) That the alleged
difficulty is not founded solely upon the opportunity to make the property more profitable or to
reduce expense to the owner, and f) That the requested variance is the minimum action required
to eliminate the difficulty.
A motion that the use variance request to allow a single-family residential home at 631 E.
Laketon Avenue be approved, was made by S. Warmington, supported by B. Larson and
unanimously approved, with B. Larson, E. Carter, E. Fordham, S. Warmington, T. Halterman,
and W. German voting aye.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:18 p.m.
Zoning Board of Appeals Minutes – 7/14/15 2