Chapter 1
PURD Planned Unit Residential District

3.101 Purpose.

The planned unit residential (PURD) district is intended and designed to provide a means for the development of large tracts of ground on a unified design basis, allowing greater flexibility and diversification of land uses and building locations than the conventional single lot method provided in other sections of this ordinance. It is the intent of this section that the basic principles of good land use planning, including an orderly and graded relationship between various type of uses, be maintained and that the sound zoning standards as set forth in this ordinance and statutes concerning population density, adequate light and air, recreation and open space, parking and building coverage, be preserved.

The planned unit residential (PURD) district is a designation, with reverter, superimposing the regulations of this development upon the district without changing the fundamental intent of the underlying district regulations, especially in relation to population and dwelling unit densities and useable floor area to land area ratios, while modifying these and other regulations in specific application to a large area rather than to an individual lot.

3.102 Filing of petition.

The owner of any tract of land that includes no recorded subdivision and has an area of not less than 25 acres, may initiate the procedure provided by this section of the zoning ordinance by petition to the city commission. Such petition, in addition to any other purpose, is for a zoning amendment as outlined in Article 1 of this ordinance.

The initiating petition shall state, as specifically as may be feasible at the time, the primary provisions of the ordinance from which the petitioner may be seeking amendment, and shall state the reasons he believes the intent of the ordinance can be better accomplished by such exception or modification. The petition may include plan maps, drawings and other graphic illustrative material, as well as written documentation, that in the opinion of the petitioner bear significant relationship to the health, safety and general welfare of the citizens of the city and the potential occupants of the proposed planned unit residential district development.

As required by Act No. 33 of the Public Acts of Michigan of 2008, as amended, the petition will be referred to the planning commission.

The procedure then will follow steps appropriately similar to, and the steps may be taken concurrently with, the steps required by the subdivision regulations of the city. In addition to data submittals required by Ordinance No. 1528, the Subdivision Ordinance, the planning commission may call for additional significant data such as: economic analyses and market studies of various housing types, soil surveys, and tabulated representation of gross and net areas.

If the petitioner desires the assurance of tentative official sanction of some basic aspects of the proposed PURD plan prior to the planning commission recommendation of the complete PURD planning and zoning amendment documents (see section VI.J of the Subdivision Ordinance), and such basic aspects are of a nature that they can be reduced to zoning ordinances amendment language, the planning commission may recommend such amendments. The effective date of such amendment must be so stated that such amendment will not be operative until subsequent to the effective date of appropriate complete PURD amendments.

3.103 Regulations.

The land uses, minimum lot area, open space, height, and accessory uses shall be determined by the requirements set out below, which shall prevail over conflicting requirements of this ordinance.

A.    Permitted uses. The buildings shall be used for residential purposes and customarily incidental accessory uses; noncommercial recreational facilities, community activities including churches and schools, and similar ancillary uses. Further, the land uses shall be composed of such combination of types of dwelling or other activities as shall be authorized by the planning commission, but the planning commission shall authorize only those types of dwelling and other activities and structures as will:

1.    Form a compatible and harmonious community group or groups;

2.    Conform to comprehensive planning of the city;

3.    Be suited to the capacity of existing and proposed community utilities and facilities;

4.    Be capable of a unitary design consistent with the protection of public health, safety and welfare, in general;

5.    Afford reasonable protection to the permissible uses of immediately adjacent properties surrounding the site.

    If, in the opinion of the planning commission, reasons can be shown to indicate commercial, industrial or other nonresidential uses maybe appropriate in, or adjacent to, the area being considered for a PURD amendment, the planning commission may consider, separately from, but concurrently with their consideration of a PURD proposed amendment, proposed zoning amendment to permit such other nonresidential uses as the planning commission finds to be either:

a.    Designed to serve primarily the residents of the residential PURD and limited to the extent that like nonresidential uses are not available in convenient proximity; or

b.    A use designed to serve the entire city but whose locational determinants require the facility to be located in the PURD; but in either case the use must be found by the planning commission to be fully and compatibly incorporated into the unitary design of the residential PURD.

B.    Required open space and height requirements. The required open space and height requirements of the zoning district in which the PURD is located may not apply except the required open space specified in the district shall be provided around the boundaries of the area zoned PURD.

C.    Perimeter uses. Uses along the PURD zone boundary lines shall not be in conflict with those allowed in adjoining or opposite property. To this end the planning commission may require, in the absence of an appropriate physical barrier, that uses of least intensity or a buffer of open space or screening be arranged along the borders of the zone.

D.    Plat required. A plat of the development shall be recorded regardless of whether a subdivision is proposed, showing building lines, building locations, common land, streets, easements, and other applicable items required by the Subdivision Ordinance of the city.

E.    Final plat approval necessary. No building permits shall be issued until the final plat of the development is approved and recorded.

3.104 Density, Allowable Percentages of Multiple, and Coverage Requirements.

The maximum number of dwelling units permitted shall be determined by dividing the net development area by the minimum lot area per dwelling unit required by the underlying district or districts in which the area is located. Net development area shall be determined by subtracting that portion of lake and muck and peat area (as defined in the Subdivision) that lie more than 200 feet from the nearest shore line or boundary of such area; and the area set aside for churches and schools or conditionally approved nonresidential uses, if any, and deducting the area actually proposed for streets from the gross development area.

The area of land set aside for common land, open space, or recreation, except as above deducted, shall be included in determining the number of dwelling units permitted shall be determined by the district in which the development is located. The following table shall be used as a guide for the planning commission.

Zoning District

Percentage of Total Units Allowed as Multiples

Multiple Family (R-3, R-4, R-5) and Non-Residential Districts


R-2 Districts


R-1 Districts


If the development area contains two or more different underlying zone district classifications, the number of dwelling units permitted, and the percentage of multiple-family dwelling units allowed shall be determined in direct proportion to the area of each zone district classification contained in the entire tract.

3.105 Deed restrictions.

In view of the “petitioning for special exception” nature of the PURD amendment procedure, deed restrictions and covenants entered into, or proposed to be contracted for, by the developer become an appropriate consideration of the city.

The planning commission shall consider the manner in which this lawful contractual technique can augment lawful zoning techniques in attaining the objectives of a PURD amendment and may make their recommendations conditional upon these contractual relations between private parties. Further, the planning commission may recommend procedures whereby the corporate municipality permanently becomes a party in such contractual relations.

3.106 Common land areas.

Common land areas not dedicated to the general public shall be held in corporate ownership by private owners of lots or parcels of land in the PURD area and the developer shall incorporate into the deeds of all property, or all of certain classes of property within the development, a clause giving to the owners an interest in such common areas indication the use to be made of the common area and providing a means of permanent maintenance of this common area. The city shall be given a fee interest in trust for the group of citizens having ownership interest in such common land area. The form of this trustee interest of the city shall be derived from section 50 of the Plat Act, Act No. 172 of the Public Acts of Michigan of 1929, as amended (M.S.A. 26.480), and other appropriate law. Any maintenance expense or other costs incurred by the city acting in this trustee capacity shall be collected from only the group of citizens having ownership interest in such common land area.

3.107 Completion.

The city commission shall make the approval of the development plan contingent upon the completion of construction and improvements within a reasonable period of time; provided, however, that in the determination of such period, the commission shall consider the scope and magnitude of the development project. Any schedule of construction and improvement shall be submitted by the developer for each major section.

Failure to complete all construction and improvements within such period of time shall be deemed sufficient cause for the city commission, in addition to other appropriate lawful action, to retract the PURD zoning of the subject property and revert the zoning to the classification effective at the time of original submission of the development plan, unless an extension is recommended by the planning commission and approved by the city commission for due cause shown. Any proposed change in the development plan after approval by the commission shall be resubmitted and considered in the same manner as the original proposal.

3.108 Form of PURD zoning ordinance amendment documents.

The documents will include both a zoning map amendment to specifically locate the area regulated by the PURD zoning plan and an amendment modification of the text of certain regulations of the then in force Zoning Ordinance. This amendment modifying certain regulations may be composed of written regulatory language, detailed site plans, written contractual agreements or other appropriate communication media that will specifically define the intent. All of this documentation shall have been prepared and considered in accordance with the procedure described in this PURD section. Following the recommendation of the planning commission favoring the PURD amendment, the enactment procedure shall follow Article 6, Chapter 8 of this Ordinance.