Yes, yes, Midtown Detroit has boomed in recent years, becoming the sort-of walkable urban downtown environment the city hasn't seen in years. It's one of the fastest growing — and, according to Midtown Detroit Inc. (MDI) president Sue Mosey, the second most diverse area — in Detroit. But the individuals behind MDI say new development requires extra attention due to how the area is currently zoned, and what kind of development it hopes to attract. In turn, MDI has proposed rezoning a chunk of the Midtown district, in order to facilitate a smoother process for future developments.
Summed up on the MDI website
, Midtown's current zoning classifications have "created obstacles to new development that is desired within the neighborhood. The ... current zoning code is a bit outdated and does not accurately reflect the vision of the area — a district to be developed as a dense, walkable community."
MDI reps say, with most projects, developers commonly have to seek a clearance at a special hearing of the Detroit Zoning Board of Appeals. The proposed changes would "support a desired mix of uses within one zoning code," the website says.
The changes, according to MDI, would affect an area generally defined by Woodward, Hancock, Third, and Peterboro. Some businesses interested in setting up shop in Midtown are considered "conditional or regulated uses" under the current zoning code. "This extends the timeframe and complexity of receiving an approval for a building permit," the websites said.
So, importantly: An informational meeting will be held tomorrow at 9 a.m. at the University of Michigan Detroit Center, located at 3663 Woodward, Suite 150. Plenty of people would be affected by this rezoning, so if you have a question, the meeting would be a place to start. If you can't make it, however, MDI says to contact Karen Gage of MDI at 313-420-6007 or by email at email@example.com, or Timothy Boscarino of the Detroit planning commission staff at 313-224-2110 or firstname.lastname@example.org.