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Planning meeting to discuss land use permit requests

August 20, 2012
Steve Schulwitz - News Staff Writer , The Alpena News

ALPENA - The Alpena Planning Commission is holding a public hearing to consider a pair of special land use permit requests, which if approved would relocate PNC Bank's current drive-through banking structure. It is currently situated between Park Place and River Street and would be rebuilt in the parking lot behind the bank on the corner of Second Avenue and Park Place.

The other permit would allow for a used car dealership to open in the former Medicine Shoppe on the corner of Washington Avenue and Ripley Boulevard.

Interim City Manager Greg Sundin said the bank would like to be able to have its employees work from within the bank and not across the street.

"They presented a proposal to relocate their drive-through facility downtown to directly across the street behind the bank," Sundin said. "The move would allow the employees to remain in the the bank, instead of being in a separate building. Under our ordinance we require them to have a special land use permit so we can see how they are going to be laid out, make sure we have sufficient stacking, and doesn't create a public safety issue. They want to start the project as soon as possible, so the only thing left is the hearing and a vote by the commission. If it passes, they can begin the project."

The second permit request is from a car dealership from Rogers City that is going to lease the former pharmacy and sell cars from it. Sundin said the old drug store has been out of business for some time, and even though the lot is somewhat small for a car lot, he said the plans show there is enough room to make it work.

"It has been vacant for about a year or so, and the owner lives out of town, and he has indicated he wants to lease the property to a party from Rogers City to develop it into a used car lot," Sundin said. "Outdoor vehicle sales require a special use permit, the reason being once again is so we can look at the site plan. The biggest thing we are going to look at is how they are going to put the vehicles, because it is a pretty tight lot, but the property does include some land at the south of the building they aren't looking to have any sort of service bay or anything like that. There will be four parking spots for customers and an employee, but it will be cramped."

The public hearing is scheduled for Aug. 28 at 7 p.m. in the council chambers at city hall. Residents will be allowed to voice concerns or support for the projects during the hearing.

Steve Schulwitz can be reached via e-mail at or by phone at 358-5689.



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