City to Move Ahead with Rezoning of 10 Mile & Beck Property for Residential Development
Novi City Council gave city staff the OK to move forward with the rezoning process after changes were made to the proposal, including adding an access road to Beck Road in the future subdivision.
The Novi City Council agreed in a vote of 6-1 Monday night to allow city staff to move ahead with the rezoning process for property located at 10 Mile and Beck roads to allow for a residential development of 38 houses.
The proposed development will sit on 24 acres of land, and the applicant, Beck Ten Land, LLC. asked council to rezone the district from a smaller density single-family residential to a larger one by using the city's Planned Rezoning Overlay (PRO) option to allow for development with smaller and narrower lots and slightly higher density.
The PRO acts as a zoning amendment, in which the applicant and the city can agree on any deviations from applicable ordinances and use restrictions. Council has now asked staff to prepare the final PRO details, and the members will officially approve the rezoning at a future meeting.
Coming to an agreement
The Novi Planning Commission approved the rezoning proposal for recommendation to the council in late February. Yet, dozens of emails to the council and a big showing at its meeting at the end of March caused the council to postpone its decision until now.
Major concerns voiced by citizens and shared by several council members included the density of the development, the previous lack of any new access road to the homes and deviating from the city’s master plan.
The original plan for the development did not include adding a new access road to the houses. Instead, residents would have had to exit the development into nearby Greenwood Oaks subdivision to exit via the existing roads, which several residents spoke against at the last meeting.
The new plan includes a boulevard access to Beck Road and the removal of roads that connect to the existing neighboring subdivision, Greenwood Oaks. The applicant also agreed to extend the center turn lane on Beck Road to allow for ease of turning into the new subdivision.
The applicant also agreed to the following changes:
- Proposing a new name for the development that will not make any reference to neighboring Greenwood Oaks subdivision, which caused some concern for residents who thought it would bring down their home values if people thought the two were the same subdivision, since the new development will have a higher density.
- Revised elevations and floor plans, which are in the attached PDF, so as to provide a variety of offered models in the new development, as requested by the City's facade consultant.
- Dropping the smaller floor plans, which were around 2,400 square feet. All of the floor plans are now 2,600 square feet or larger.
Dennis Ringvelski, a resident of Greenwood Oaks who had petitioned the original proposal, said he was happy with it now that an entryway to the new subdivision is being added to Beck Road and that the name of the development will not reference his subdivision.
Several council members thanked the developer for working with the city to alter the plans to meet some of their requests.
"Seldom to we see someone who has gone through the ringer come back with such an improved proposal," said Mayor Pro-tem Dave Staudt.
Novi Mayor Bob Gatt said the applicant did everything the council asked of them and pointed out that the council has not received any emails with concerns from residents with the new proposal, as opposed to the dozens it received with the original plan.
Sacrificing some issues
Council member Andrew Mutch is the only one who did not support the rezoning, citing three main reasons:
- The density was larger than the city's master plan and sets a bad precedent.
- There is no buffer between the smaller lots for the new development and the larger lots in the existing neighboring subdivision.
- The benefits to the public the city asks for to grant a PRO were not met.
Council member Terry Margolis said she is very comfortable with the density, which at 1.77 acres per unit is not much larger than the master plan's suggestion of 1.65 units per acre. She also said that she didn't think a buffer was needed between the two subdivisions.
"A new residential development in Novi I think is something we didn't think we'd see for quite a few years...so as a homeowner in the city, I think that Novi is something people want to invest in only helps all of us in the city," she said.