Daily Archives: April 18, 2014

Supervisor Gonser demonstrates his lack of knowledge of Oakland Township Zoning

At the April 8th Oakland Township Board meeting, Supervisor Gonser commented on the current zoning of Oakland Township.  He commented that Oakland Township Zoning not only drove the agricultural businesses out of the Township, but that it allows Oakland Township to be developed like Rochester Hills and Troy.   Supervisor Gonser indicated that the Board needs to ‘change the zoning so it does not develop into Rochester Hill and Troy’.  Trustee Bailey, who was on the Township Planning Commission for many years, corrected Gonser’s mis-statements. 

During the April 8th Township Board meeting discussion about the Rochester Cider Mill, Supervisor Gonser made comments about the existing zoning in Oakland Township.  He stated that the zoning that has been in place for many years has caused the agricultural uses to disappear in our Township.  He went on to say:

“Right now, the zoning is set up to develop Oakland Township just like Rochester Hills and Troy.”

Trustee Bailey challenged Gonser’s comment as not being factual.

Gonser continued by saying:

“I am suggesting that the way it has been zoned does not preclude significant development.  It is up to this Board to change that so it does not develop into Rochester Hills and Troy.  RIght now, that is not necessarily true!”

Trustee Bailey responded by saying

“I beg to differ.  I looked at the Master Plan and it does not resemble Rochester Hills.”

For Gonser to suggest that it would have been better for the Township to not have rezoned the land from Agricultural to Residential, when the inevitable growth was coming, is irrational and quite frankly poor planning. Developers could have bought the land and then asked for all kinds of zoning.  That is precisely why Rochester Hills and Troy are the way they are.

One need only drive down Rochester Road from Oakland Township and witness the dramatic change in land usage as you travel South.  The prior Township Boards and Planning Commissions have provided our Township a great service by protecting our Township’s natural beauty through the existing zoning and Master Plan.

Attached are copies of the Zoning maps for Oakland Township, Rochester Hills and Troy.  Supervisor Gonser needs to take a close look at these to recognize that what he said is not true.

Oakland Township Zoning map

Rochester Hills Zoning Map

Troy Zoning map

Here is a video of the discussions at the April 8th meeting:

Why is this important to Oakland Township residents?  Supervisor Gonser clearly has intentions of changing the zoning.  As he has opportunities to place people, with like thinking, on the Planning Commission and the open position on the Board, he may have enough support from his followers that inappropriate changes will be made.  The citizens of Oakland Township need to understand what his zoning intentions are.  He needs to exhibit the transparency that he speaks so often about and share his vision of the zoning changes he wants to see.

Richard Michalski