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City to develop new rec plan

April 8, 2008
Phil Wenzel
The city of Alpena needs to start work on a new five-year recreation plan that should be submitted to the Department of Natural Resources by early 2009, City Planner Greg Sundin said Tuesday night.

He made the announcement during the regular Alpena Planning Commission meeting. The city’s current recreation plan expires March 1, 2009. The DNR needs an updated plan before that date for the city to remain eligible for state grant money.

The report will include the city’s five-year projections for recreation facilities and their needs.

“We’re trying to look at what could be done or what reasonably could be done,” Sundin said.

The report will require the formation of a committee, which Sundin hopes will contain members of both the Alpena City Recreation Advisory Board and the planning commission. But he said it likely would be the rec advisory board providing leadership for the project.

“This is probably something that they would normally take the lead on,” he said.

Compiling the data for the report should take about six months. It will involve taking inventory of the city’s parks and determining what changes, if any, are needed to each one. Sundin hopes to also obtain a lot of demographic data from the Northeast Michigan Council of Governments.

NEMCOG helped with the compilation of the last five-year plan.

Sundin said he hopes to have a six-person committee appointed by the end of June.

In other business:

? Sundin said the rewriting of city zoning ordinances to match a recently completed comprehensive city plan is moving along. However, only about 10 percent of the work is done and the rest probably won’t be completed until February 2009.

He said changing zoning ordinances can be a long and complicated process.

“We’re talking about a legislative document that determines what people can and can’t do on their land,” Sundin said.

? Sundin said the Alpena Municipal Council likely will have at its next meeting a first reading of a proposal to amend city regulations making it easier to open bed and breakfast facilities.

The item was originally scheduled for Monday’s council meeting, but the meeting was canceled for lack of a quorum. A makeup meeting has been scheduled for Monday.

He was unsure when a final vote could come, but said it likely will be either at the council’s next regular meeting April 21, or its first meeting in May.

Phil Wenzel can be reached via e-mail at or by phone at 358-5689.


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