Permit Process

Mt. Pleasant MI City Administration Planning Zoning 48858 Isabella County

Variance Authorization

City Code § 154.164 VARIANCES

(D) To obtain a non-use or dimensional variance, the applicant must show practical difficulty by demonstrating that all of the following conditions exist:

  1. (1) 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 classes or uses in the same zoning district; exceptional or extraordinary circumstances or conditions normally include:
    1. (a) Exceptional narrowness, shallowness or shape of a specific property on the effective date of this chapter;
    2. (b) Exceptional topographic conditions or other extraordinary situation on the land, building or structure; or
    3. (c) Use or development of the property immediately adjoining the property in question.
  2. (2) That such a 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.
  3. (3) That the variance request is not one where the specific conditions pertaining to the property are so general or recurrent in nature as to make the formulation of a general regulation for such conditions reasonably practicable.
  4. (4) That the authorizing of such variance will not be a substantial detriment to adjacent property.
  5. (5) That authorizing of the variance will not materially impair the purposes of this chapter or the public interest.
  6. (6) That the need for the variance is not created by any action of the applicant or previous owner.

(E) The Board of Appeals shall have the power to decide application for use variances from the provisions of this chapter for the following conditions:

  1. (1) Literal enforcement of the requirements of this chapter would cause undue hardships to the applicant due to:
    1. (a) The property can not be used for purposes permitted in that zone;
    2. (b) The problem arises because of the property's unique circumstances rather than general neighborhood conditions;
    3. (c) The use variance will not change the essential character of the area;
    4. (d) The problem is not self-created;
    5. (e) The use or development of property immediately adjoining the property in question is not adversely effected due to increase in traffic, noise, odor, vibration, etc.;
    6. (f) The possibility of increased financial return shall not of itself be deemed sufficient to warrant a variance.

Mount Pleasant, Michigan City Code     (excerpt)     04/01/2010

Down State Perspective

Charter Township of Milford, Oakland County Michigan

ZONING VARIANCE DECISION-MAKERS CHECKLIST

Members of the Zoning Board of appeals will have the difficult job of deciding whether or not to approve a variance which has been requested. Following is a list of questions which board members can use to help them decide if a variance request is justified:

  • 1. Is the applicant's lot unique (in terms of size, shape, topography or location) when compared to other lots in the same zone?
  • Answer must be YES
  • 2. Can the property reasonably be used in a manner which is consistent with the requirements of the Zoning Ordinance?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 3. If the variance is denied, would the applicant be denied privileges enjoyed by neighboring properties?
  • Answer must be YES
  • 4. Is the need for a variance created by the applicant?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 5. Will the variance, if approved, have an adverse affect on the property values of adjoining properties?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 6. Will the variance injure or damage neighboring properties (considering hazards from fire, flood, lights, traffic congestion, and other similar concerns)?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 7. Would this variance constitute an undesirable precedent?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 8. Is the variance contrary to the intent and purpose of the Zoning Ordinance?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 9. Is the variance being requested because of personal or economic hardship rather than the unique physical situation of the particular property?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 10. Does the variance constitute the minimum action necessary to permit reasonable use of the land and buildings?
  • Answer must be YES

In summary, the zoning variance must apply only to an unusual condition found on the land. A variance should not be granted to give an applicant special privilege not enjoyed by his neighbors.

 

Variance Authorization

City Code § 154.164 VARIANCES

(D) To obtain a non-use or dimensional variance, the applicant must show practical difficulty by demonstrating that all of the following conditions exist:

  1. (1) 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 classes or uses in the same zoning district; exceptional or extraordinary circumstances or conditions normally include:
    1. (a) Exceptional narrowness, shallowness or shape of a specific property on the effective date of this chapter;
    2. (b) Exceptional topographic conditions or other extraordinary situation on the land, building or structure; or
    3. (c) Use or development of the property immediately adjoining the property in question.
  2. (2) That such a 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.
  3. (3) That the variance request is not one where the specific conditions pertaining to the property are so general or recurrent in nature as to make the formulation of a general regulation for such conditions reasonably practicable.
  4. (4) That the authorizing of such variance will not be a substantial detriment to adjacent property.
  5. (5) That authorizing of the variance will not materially impair the purposes of this chapter or the public interest.
  6. (6) That the need for the variance is not created by any action of the applicant or previous owner.

(E) The Board of Appeals shall have the power to decide application for use variances from the provisions of this chapter for the following conditions:

  1. (1) Literal enforcement of the requirements of this chapter would cause undue hardships to the applicant due to:
    1. (a) The property can not be used for purposes permitted in that zone;
    2. (b) The problem arises because of the property's unique circumstances rather than general neighborhood conditions;
    3. (c) The use variance will not change the essential character of the area;
    4. (d) The problem is not self-created;
    5. (e) The use or development of property immediately adjoining the property in question is not adversely effected due to increase in traffic, noise, odor, vibration, etc.;
    6. (f) The possibility of increased financial return shall not of itself be deemed sufficient to warrant a variance.

Mount Pleasant, Michigan City Code     (excerpt)     04/01/2010

Down State Perspective

Charter Township of Milford, Oakland County Michigan

ZONING VARIANCE DECISION-MAKERS CHECKLIST

Members of the Zoning Board of appeals will have the difficult job of deciding whether or not to approve a variance which has been requested. Following is a list of questions which board members can use to help them decide if a variance request is justified:

  • 1. Is the applicant's lot unique (in terms of size, shape, topography or location) when compared to other lots in the same zone?
  • Answer must be YES
  • 2. Can the property reasonably be used in a manner which is consistent with the requirements of the Zoning Ordinance?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 3. If the variance is denied, would the applicant be denied privileges enjoyed by neighboring properties?
  • Answer must be YES
  • 4. Is the need for a variance created by the applicant?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 5. Will the variance, if approved, have an adverse affect on the property values of adjoining properties?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 6. Will the variance injure or damage neighboring properties (considering hazards from fire, flood, lights, traffic congestion, and other similar concerns)?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 7. Would this variance constitute an undesirable precedent?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 8. Is the variance contrary to the intent and purpose of the Zoning Ordinance?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 9. Is the variance being requested because of personal or economic hardship rather than the unique physical situation of the particular property?
  • Answer must be NO
  • 10. Does the variance constitute the minimum action necessary to permit reasonable use of the land and buildings?
  • Answer must be YES

In summary, the zoning variance must apply only to an unusual condition found on the land. A variance should not be granted to give an applicant special privilege not enjoyed by his neighbors.