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New zoning proposed for downtown Davisburg

July 11, 2012 - Springfield Township is proposing that downtown Davisburg have its zoning changed from commercial to village center.

Springfield Township Supervisor Collin Walls said the change would "better fit the historic aspects and character of downtown Davisburg."

Commercial, or C-1 zoning, requires open space between buildings, parking with each building, and also signs set back off the road. Dixie Highway is zoned C-1.

However, downtown Davisburg is too small with buildings too close together to meet these requirements.

Thinking of downtown Davisburg may cause you to wonder how the current buildings are able to be there with the commercial zoning. The situation those buildings are in is known as legal non-conforming. The buildings are allowed to stay the way they are because they existed before the commercial zoning was applied to downtown.

With that in mind, the ordinance to change the zoning to village center hopes to minimize non-conformity, Walls said.

Downtown Davisburg has been the same for over 150 years, and the new zoning would recognize that, he said.

It will allow for residences above the stores and recognize the issues with space in downtown.

"It's just meant to make it easier to do business in downtown Davisburg…to the extent that zoning can address that," Walls said.

This idea of doing business downtown is an important part of what the zoning will address. Current property owners will be able to make improvements to their lots.

In addition, empty lots will be able to have new structures built in them.

The Township Board will discuss language for the ordinance next meeting. Then they will start to work on the zoning map. The plan is to fully implement it by September or October. So far, no one has been openly opposed to the idea, Walls said.

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