History‎ > ‎3. Third Plan (2009-10)‎ > ‎


Both the Church site plan and the 42 North site plan were set to expire this year. Petitions to extend the duration of each of those site plans were filed with the planning department. As explained below, one was approved and one was denied.

42 North Site Plan

The site plan for 42 North was set to expire September 8, 2011. On June 28, 2011, a member of the development team petitioned the City for an administrative extension to the site plan. On August 18, 2011, a planning staff member informed the developer that the site plan no longer complies with the applicable zoning regulations. The City altered the R4B (and other) zoning districts when it approved the Area Height and Placement modifications to the City Code. See Ann Arbor City Code, Title V, Chapter 55, Article III. The notice from the planning staff encouraged "timely" submission of the necessary revisions, without setting a deadline. These documents can be found on the eTrakit site, by searching for project SP11-020. 

Site Plan Expired

After noticing the letter from planning staff to the developer denying the petition to administratively extend the site plan duration, we sent the following email to planning staff member Matt Kowalski, with copies to our 4th Ward Council members.

From: jackeaton@live.com
To: mkowalski@a2gov.org
CC: mhiggins@a2gov.org; mteall@a2gov.org
Subject: 42 North administrative extension
Date: Wed, 28 Sep 2011 11:37:57 -0400


I noticed that the developer's request for an administrative extension for the 42 North site plan (Project# SP11-020) was not approved. In your August 18 letter to Mr. Ophoff you note that the previously approved plan does not comply with changes to the zoning district. Your letter asks that the developer make timely revisions to the site plan.

I have two simple questions:

1. What is the period in which the revisions may be "timely" submitted?

The 42 North site plan was scheduled to expire on September 8, 2011. The extension was requested in July and your letter was sent in August.

2. Does the approval of the AHP zoning regulation changes bar the administrative approval of a previous plan that fails to meet the new requirements for the R4B zoning district?

It was my understanding that an administrative extension is proper only where the ordinance and regulations for the property have not changed. Here (1430 S. Maple) the property is subject to significant changes to the applicable zoning district (R4B) under the AHP revisions.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

~Jack Eaton
1606 Dicken Dr

We did not receive any response from Mr. Kowalski or our Council representatives. So we followed up with this email:

From: jackeaton@live.com
To: mkowalski@a2gov.org
CC: mhiggins@a2gov.org; mteall@a2gov.org; sbriere@a2gov.org; wrampson@a2gov.org
Subject: RE: 42 North administrative extension
Date: Sun, 2 Oct 2011 12:23:18 -0400


I am following up on my previous email. After sending that email, I reviewed the code section related to administrative amendments. City Code, Chapter 57, section 5:122, paragraph (5) allows administrative amendments of site plans where the amendment involves a "minor change" to the site plan.

In your August letter to the developer, you note that the previously approved site plan does not comply with the current setback requirements for the R4B zoning district. Sub-paragraph (5) (h) allows: "Moving a building no more than 10 feet or 5% of the distance to the closest property line, whichever is smaller."

As I read the 42 North site plan, the front most building in the project is setback 87 feet. The AHP modifications to R4B districts allow a maximum setback of 40 feet. I think you would agree that the developer cannot meet the 10 feet or 5% (4.35 feet) standard in (5)(h). Additionally, it appears from the site plan that moving the front most build toward the street would displace a significant stormwater retention pool. I believe that might implicate the limits found in (5)(k).

Additionally, I would note that your letter to the developer did not provide them with the courtesy of notice of the time limit for providing modifications. I was unable to find anything in the Code that sets that deadline. 

Please let me know the status of this site plan administrative amendment application.

Thanks, Jack

On October 3, Mr. Kowalski sent an email response. Unfortunately, he did not answer our questions regarding the time period allowed for modifying a pending petition for administrative amendment or whether the significant relocation of a building to satisfy the new setback requirement could qualify as a "minor change" susceptible to administrative approval. He did, however, inform us that the 42 North site plan had expired. 

Subject: RE: 42 North administrative extension

Date: Mon, 3 Oct 2011 14:10:59 -0400

From: MKowalski@a2gov.org

To: jackeaton@live.com

CC: MHiggins@a2gov.org; MTeall@a2gov.org; SBriere@a2gov.org; WRampson@a2gov.org

Hi Jack,


My apologies for the delay.  The 42 North site plan has expired and the Administrative Amendment has been denied.  Any new project for this site or even revised 42 North plans will need to be processed in the same manner as all new site plans. This would require review/approval from City Staff, Planning Commission and City Council.  


Please let me know any additional questions you have.

Thank you,




Matthew J. Kowalski  AICP


City Planner 

City of Ann Arbor, MI


734.794.6265 General


ext 42612 Direct


Church Site Plan

The first and second site plans for the Church property involved splitting the current Church site into two separate sites. One site would have the 42 North project and the other site would have the Church and the wetland mitigation area.

The Church filed an application for an administrative extension of the Church site plan. At the time the extension was sought for the Church plan, no one applied for an extension for the 42 North plan (an application was filed subsequently, see above).

The following email is included in the packet of information about the application for an administrative extension of the site plan for the Church property.

From: Kowalski, Matthew
Sent: Monday, May 02, 2011 5:33 PM
To: Heatley, Alison; Slotten, Cresson; Rampson, Wendy
Cc: Hupy, Craig; McDonald, Kevin
Subject: RE: Grace Bible Church Site Plan Extension

Planning is okay with the extension of the Grace Bible Church site plan as submitted. It is understood that the site utility plan is dependent on the layout of the approved 42 North site plan. The 42 North site plan expires in October 2011 and at this time it appears unlikely that the project will be built, or the site plan extended. It has been relayed to the petitioner’s agent, and will be submitted in written comments, that the Grace Bible Church site plan (including shared utility configuration and access and wetland mitigation) must be constructed or, if as appears likely, 42 North is not built, the site plan will need to be amended in order to accommodate a revised utility layout for any future development. Given the uncertainty of the future development of the site, Planning is okay with this approach. The site plan extension keeps the approved church site plan active for another two years and a revised utility plan can be accomplished administratively. It is unlikely  that the church will proceed with their construction before the land is divided and sold, because they need the money from the sale of the land to finance the church addition.

There is a Development Agreement, but it will not need to be amended at this time. Depending on the future plans for the 42 North site, the DA may need to be amended as well. This would have to be done at City Council.


From the file "SPU Review #1: SPU Review - Grace Bible Church Site Pl.pdf"
Found on this page:

The full email exchange is found in the document attached below, "SPU.pdf"
South Maple Group,
Sep 29, 2011, 2:12 PM
South Maple Group,
Sep 29, 2011, 2:12 PM
South Maple Group,
Jun 7, 2011, 2:15 PM
South Maple Group,
Jun 7, 2011, 1:40 PM