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City of Belleville, Michigan Adopts Innovative Zoning Ordinance

The City of Belleville has a new Zoning Ordinance that is the first of its kind in Wayne County and the Detroit Region Aerotropolis development area. The new Clearzoning® code is online.


Belleville, MI – July 2013
The City of Belleville has a new Zoning Ordinance that is the first of its kind in Wayne County and the Detroit Region Aerotropolis development area. Over the past several months, the City has worked with Clearzoning, Inc. a Michigan-based planning consulting and coding firm, on this new ordinance. Clearzoning Planners Rodney Arroyo and Jill Bahm worked closely with the City’s staff and Planning Commission to clarify confusing zoning language, update code provisions, and provide additional flexibility for redevelopment in certain districts. In addition, the City refined its “form-based” provisions aimed at revitalizing the historic downtown and central business district.

City Manager Diana Kollmeyer is really looking forward to using the new code and thinks it will be a great tool for City staff. She notes, “our old code was hard to read and understand. The new code is filled with helpful illustrations and is designed to work online, making it easier for people to find answers to basic zoning questions, even when key staff are out of the office or we are closed for the day.”
Steve Jones, chair of the Planning Commission, agrees and is also excited about the new ordinance, noting that “it will be much easier for us, the public, and business owners to understand the Zoning Ordinance. We are also pleased that we were able to address concerns from the downtown business community by allowing some additional uses, like offices on the ground floor, that hadn’t previously been permitted.” Carol Thompson, the City’s Downtown Development Authority Director finds the new ordinance to be another good tool in the City’s economic toolbox, “Downtown has a lot to offer, and I think this new ordinance will help attract the interest of new businesses and development.”
The City is part of the Detroit Region Aerotropolis, an economic development corporation focused on generating business opportunities in the region. This new Zoning Ordinance is a great way for the City to be more “development-ready,” by making it easier for businesses to understand the City’s zoning and development review procedures. Mayor Kerreen Conley adds, “Our Zoning Ordinance is the first of its kind in Wayne County and in the Detroit Aerotropolis Region. We think it sends a great message that we are using today’s technology to transform the way our zoning regulations are presented, making it easier to understand the type of development we are seeking.” Downtown Development Authority Coordinator Carol Thompson agrees, noting that interest in the City has been on the rise recently. In fact, she notes that, “the Clearzoning project was financed with revenue from the City’s Building Department as a direct result of recent growth in the City.”
Clearzoning Principal Planner Jill Bahm noted, “We have really enjoyed working with the businesses, staff, and Planning Commission on this project. This City has great potential, with its location near I-94, between Detroit Metropolitan Airport and Willow Run Airport, and near the Cities of Ypsilanti and Ann Arbor. It’s got beautiful Belleville Lake and a charming downtown that is open for business. This new code will enhance the City’s customer service capabilities and improve access to zoning information.” The new code is available on the City’s website:
About the City of Belleville
The City of Belleville is located in Wayne County, Michigan. It is an attractive community nestled on the peninsular shores of beautiful Belleville Lake, a picturesque setting with tree lined neighborhoods, enhanced by a traditional downtown and beautiful parks. Belleville also hosts a planned industrial park along the rail road corridor.
For more information about development opportunities in the City of Belleville, contact Diana Kollmeyer, the City Manager. For zoning questions, please contact Keith Boc, Director of Public Services. Both may be reached at 734-697-9323.
About Clearzoning
Clearzoning, Inc. was founded in 1989 in Oakland County, Michigan. The Clearzoning ordinance product was launched in 2007 with a mission to help municipalities improve customer service and attract economic development by making municipal ordinances easier to understand and navigate.  It also adds graphics, reorganizes information in a logical fashion, and it makes words and terms searchable. 

Clearzoning, its logo, and the mark “clear and connected” are registered trademarks.  The Clearzoning format is copyrighted by Clearzoning, Inc. Established in 1989, Clearzoning, Inc. provides community planning, traffic, and parking consulting services. 

Clearzoning is located at 28021 Southfield Road, Lathrup Village, MI  48076. For more information, contact Rod Arroyo, President of Clearzoning, Inc.  at 866-271-ZONE.    




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