Apply for a Zone Change

Are you looking to change the zone district of your property? In some cases this makes a lot of sense. We'll guide you through the process.

 

Online Form

We don't accept online applications for this service

You can complete the paper application. Click the Paper Form tab of this page for instructions and to download the form. Call or visit our office if you need help applying. You can find our number and address in the Contact Us section of this page. We're happy to help you fill out an application!

Paper Form

Consult with us

We strongly recommend that you meet with Planning staff for an informal review of your proposed project. The meeting is intended to determine what kind of zone change is needed, if other approvals are required, and to explain the process for a decision on the proposal. Find our contact information in the "Contact Us" panel at the right side of this page.

Check with adjacent property owners

A zone change for a single parcel is known as "spot zoning" and is generally not legal in the State of Michigan. If you will not be proposing to change your property's zoning to the immediately adjacent zone, you'll probably need other adjacent property owners to sign on to have their properties rezoned as well. 

Meet with the neighbors

It's always a good idea to meet with neighboring property owners and the local neighborhood and/or business association. Use this meeting to help neighbors understand what you're seeking and why, and hopefully to resolve any conflicts before your Planning Commission review. The Commission may table your request if you haven't reached out to the neighborhood.

When you submit your application, include the meeting's sign-in sheet. Make sure it has the date, time, and location of the meeting, and names and addresses of attendees. 

Prepare your documents

Here are the documents you'll need to prepare before submitting your application:

Describe the Project

You'll need to submit a written description of your project. This description must include:
  • A description - location, size, current use, etc. - of the property/properties to be rezoned
  • The current zoning of the properties
  • The requested zoning of the properties
  • The need for the zone change... see below

Explain Need for Zone Change

You'll need to explain the need for your requested Zone Change. Write a description of why the Zone Change is needed. Make sure you express how the proposed Zone District will meet the needs of the development.

Transit Oriented Development Transit – Oriented Development

If you're proposing to change the zone district to TOD (Transit-Oriented Development), transit service close by is required. You'll need to include written verification from the Rapid that the required transit station or stop is permanent.

Plan Submittals 
We need copies of your plan submittal:

  • Two 11x17 copies
  • Digital copies of everything submitted in PDF format (separate files for each drawing, plan, or document)

Legal Description
We'll need a legal description of your property in Word or text format.

Prepare your payment

Make checks payable to the City of Grand Rapids. Here are application fees:

  • Map Amendment- $2,864
  • Conditional Rezoning- $5,080

Download and complete the form

Download and complete the below form. Make sure to include all other required documents with your application. Make sure to submit your application at least one month before the Planning Commission meeting. You can see a list of the Planning Commission meeting dates(PDF, 95KB).

 Download the Application

We'll review your application

We'll review and submit your application to the Planning Commission. We may contact you with questions or ask for more information.

Notice of Public Hearing

After staff review, your application is forwarded to the Planning Commission for a public hearing. You'll get a notice of the public hearing 15 days before the Planning Commission meeting.

Present Your Request to the Planning Commission

Here's what to expect at the public hearing:

  • Planning staff will introduce and explain the request
  • You'll present your zone change request to the Planning Commission
  • The Planning Commission may ask you questions about your request
  • The Planning Commission will allow public comment on your application. After public comment, you will have a chance to address any public concern or questions
  • The Planning Commission's decision for zone changes is a recommendation to the City Commission. They may recommend approval or denial, or table the application if additional information or community outreach is needed
  • The Planning Commission will send their recommendation to City Commission for review
  • Shortly after the Planning Commission's meeting, a planner will contact you to let you know the dates of City Commission review
  • The City Commission will review the Planning Commission's decision in a committee meeting, and determine whether to hold an additional public hearing. If they schedule a public hearing, Planning staff will let you know
  • The City Commission will make a decision on the rezoning request, which typically goes into effect thirty days after the decision 

We'll notify you of City Commission's decision

We'll send you a letter and resolution to let you know the City Commission's decision.

Phone

Call us for instructions to apply

You can find our number in the Contact Us section of this page. We’ll get you all the information you need to complete your application. We don’t offer applications over the phone, but we’ll make sure you have everything you need to get your application submitted.

In Person

Prepare your documents

Here are the documents you'll need to prepare before submitting your application:

Explain Need for Zone Change

You'll need to explain the need for your requested Zone Change. Write a description of why the Zone Change is needed. Make sure you express how the proposed Zone District will meet the needs of the development.

Describe the Project

You'll need to submit a written description of your project. This description must include:

  • Proposed site and/or building layout
  • Building and structure design information
  • Floor plans
  • Parking calculations
  • Current environmental conditions

Create Site Plans, Building Elevations and Floor Plans (optional)

Are you requesting Site Plan approval and with your Zone Change request? Enclose the site plans, building elevations, and floor plans with your application.

Transit Oriented Development Transit – Oriented Development

Is the application is for a TOD (Transit-Oriented Development) Zone District? Include verification from the Rapid that transit station or stop is in a permanent location.

Special Land Use

If a Special Land Use approval is also needed, include a completed SLU application.

Plan Submittals 
We need copies of your plan submittal:

  • Two 11x17 copies
  • One digital copy submitted in PDF format (separate files for each drawing, plan, or document)

Legal Description
Provide us with a legal description of your property in word or text format.

Consult with us

We recommend that you meet with us as an informal review of your proposed project. The meeting is intended to determine what kind of zone change is needed, if other approvals are required, and to explain the process to to get a decision on the proposal.

Meet with the neighbors

Meet with neighboring property owners, neighborhood association, or business association. Use this meeting to resolve any conflicts before your Planning Commission review. We may table your request if you don't hold a neighborhood meeting.

When you submit your application, include the meeting's sign-in sheet. Make sure it has the date, time, and location of the meeting.

Prepare your payment

Make checks payable to the City of Grand Rapids. Here are application fees:

  • Map Amendment- $2,864
  • Conditional Rezoning- $5,080

Visit our office

Visit us at the address listed in the Contact Us section of this page. We'll help you get everything you need to complete the application. We'll have paper copies available, but you can print the below form before you arrive. 

Keep in mind that you need to submit your application at least one month before the Planning Commission meeting. You can see a list of the Planning Commission meeting dates(PDF, 95KB).

Download the Application

Submit your application

Mail, email or drop off your application. Our information is in the Contact Us section of this page. Make sure to include all other required documents with your application.

We'll review your application

We'll review and submit your application to the Planning Commission. We may contact you with questions or ask for more information.

Notice of Public Hearing

After staff review, your application is forwarded to the Planning Commission for a public hearing. You'll get a notice of the public hearing 15 days before the Planning Commission meeting.

Present Your Request of Zone Change to Planning Commission

Here's what to expect at the public hearing:

  • You'll present your request for Optional Plan Review to the Planning Commission
  • The Planning Commission will ask you questions about your request
  • The Planning Commission will allow public comment on your application. This'll give you a chance to address any public concern or questions
  • The Planning Commission may recommend approval or denial, or table the application
  • The Planning Commission will submit their recommendation to City Commission for review

We'll notify you of City Commission's decision

We'll send you a letter and resolution to let you know City Commission's decision.