City council ponders rezoning

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City council members gather at city hall on Jan. 11. Photo: Chelsea Mongeau

Lansing City Council set a public hearing date for March 11 to deliberate the proposed rezoning of a former early childhood center to become a church.

The city council is proceeding cautiously due to a lesson learned from a rezoning elsewhere that allowed a pole barn that has angered Lansing residents, said City Council member Brian Jeffries.

When deciding if whether or not changes should be made regarding property, the Committee on Development and Planning looks at what the impact of the changes will be for the area in question.

There shouldn’t be any problems with passing the rezoning, Jeffries said.  Since the pole barn issue, the Lansing City Council has given permission for land use rather than building use, requiring owners to consult the council for changes to the land as well as buildings located on the land.  Otherwise, much like the pole barn problem, the owner could build without permission from the council and still be completely within their rights, Jeffries said.

The former early childhood center is surrounded by a park to the north and west and can currently accommodate 39 cars in the parking lot.

“They’re only talking 25 members, but they plan to expand by 25 percent,” Jeffries said.  The church would be operating on Sundays for service and Tuesdays and Wednesdays for bible study.

The church group predicts to add another six or seven members to their congregation in the following years.

Lansing City Council deliberated whether or not there would be further room for the church to grow.
There is an additional 1,000 square feet that could be used for expansion, Jeffries said at a city council meeting on Monday.  Any expansion changes would require a site plan and approval from the council.

The proposed church site is surrounded by park on the west and north sides and an occupied house to the east.

Lansing City Council set a public hearing date for March 11 to deliberate whether the proposed rezoning of the area, would be allowed.

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