Battle Creek's City Planning team will lead an update of our law that governs land use, the size and placement of buildings, and other factors that shape our community’s character.

The first major step in implementing the city’s new Battle Creek Master Plan, adopted last year, is a rewrite our city zoning ordinance. This will be the first major rewrite since 1984, and staff anticipates completing it by spring 2020.

Check out the Master Plan on the city’s website. Scroll through the Current Projects to the Master Plan. The process to the plan included public engagement like surveys, community meetings, and a map where neighbors could pin issues and opportunities in Battle Creek.

The zoning ordinance rewrite also will involve community input, including Planning staff visits to Neighborhood Planning Council meetings, and a charrette, a meeting where neighbors can participate in the planning process. The charrette will take place in October.   This outreach effort will seek neighbor input on future development preferences for Battle Creek, as expressed by the policies established in the 2018 Master Plan.

“The zoning ordinance and map are the most effective tools to guide the physical environments of a community,” said Christine Zuzga, the city’s planning manager. “While we don’t foresee wide, sweeping regulatory changes, there are many updates needed to bring the ordinance into alignment with the community’s vision for strong neighborhoods, active downtowns, successful business environments, and an engaged community.”

The zoning ordinance rewrite also will simplify the development process, which will encourage businesses and community leaders to locate in Battle Creek. At the halfway point between Detroit and Chicago, the city wants to take advantage of our prime location along I-94 to look toward the future.

The city hired McKenna – a Northville-based industry leader in providing community planning and zoning services – to help with the rewrite.