by Graham Sturgeon, co-editor
The Durand City Council approved a recommendation from the city’s Planning Commission during its Monday, Feb. 6 meeting to adopt an action plan, or strategy, for the future development of four properties located in the proximity to the Lansing Road corridor that were recently optioned by the city. Planning consultant Nicholas Lomako, a senior vice president for Wade Trim Associate, Inc., presented the plan to the council. He explained that the plan will be implemented in steps over a three-year time period.
The city has optioned the properties from individual Vernon Township land owners, which gives the city the exclusive rights to purchase the land for a set period of time. Before that happens though, Lomako and the planning commission will determine the appropriate regulatory approach to attract mixed-use development, and to accommodate emerging housing/lifestyle preferences. They will also be establishing the best way to develop and market the properties in a manner consistent with the needs and standards of the community. As for zoning, the plan calls for the properties to be left “unmapped” until prospective developers are confirmed. The group will also compile a corridor analysis and opportunity plans to be used to “visually convey development opportunities to prospective buyers.”
The planning commission will work with the State of Michigan, Shiawassee County, the Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership, and the I-69 International Trade Corridor Next Michigan Development Corporation in the development and marketing of the properties.
The plan is broken into three phases, with “Phase 1” concerning property located along Lansing Road, from approximately N. Saginaw Street on the west to New Lothrop Road on the east. That property would be used for a combination of mixed-use, business, and commercial development.
“Phase 2” concerns property located to the north of Phase 1, from New Lothrop Road on the east to Bennington Road to the north, and tying into city-owned property in the “Enterprise Zone” off Durand Road to the west. This land would be used for industrial development.
“Phase 3” addresses the development of property at the northeast corner of New Lothrop and Lansing roads, which would be available for future commercial or high-density residential development, as well as property located on the southeast corner of New Lothrop and Lansing roads, which would be available for residential building lots of a half-acre or larger.
The plan states that completing the project in phases will allow the city council to budget sufficient financial resources over a three-year period.