Certified Business Park Definition and Protective Covenant Requirements
Zoning: Property cannot be zoned for retail or residential use to qualify for State certification.
Selectively graded and cleared: Although flat and level sites with few trees are the norm, many companies like rolling sites that are somewhat wooded. A developer must determine to what extent grading and clearing detracts from the natural beauty of the site. Obvious impediments to development, such as sand or gravel heaps, knolls, bunkers, or excavations should be removed, leveled, filled, and the property graded. The Certified Business Park program on-site inspection team shall determine at the time of inspection whether the park has met the grading and clearing requirement adequately.
Site plan or plat approved by local governing unit: Under Michigan’s Subdivision Control Act, it is unlawful to sell more than four (4) parcels of less than 10 acres in a size of any unplatted acreage within a 10 year period. The local governing unit must approve a site plan or plat and then gain approval of the plat from Subdivision Control in the Michigan Department of Commerce. Local developers and planning officials should have a copy of the Subdivision Control Act on file. No park will be certified unless the owner/developer is at least in the preliminary stages of getting the entire park platted or has received local government approval of their site development plan. This site plan or plat should include the location and size of utility and road installations, right-of-way, lot lines, and acreage of each lot.
Utilities: For a high quality development, assuring the tenant of adequate and reliable utility services is essential. All utilities, including a storm water control plan, must be readily available for tap-in by a business buying land in the park. No Special consideration will be given to communities deciding to locate the park in an area not serviceable by a municipality, as this should be an important factor in the planning stages. In areas of the state where it is geologically not feasible for water and sewer line extensions, a letter from a geological engineer stating the reason for this inability may make the park certifiable.
Highway: Access to the park and interior sites should also be an important factor in planning the appropriate location for a park. There must be an all weather road leading to the park and an all weather road inside the park giving access to all interior sites. The 300’ minimum is intended for those parks being developed in phases.
PROTECTIVE COVENANTS:- when mailing in, please identify where to find the following requirements in your corresponding material (i.e.: highlight, label, etc.).
Protective covenants and/or zoning ordinance restrictions set a quality Certified Business Park apart from or above an unplanned business development district. They give the owner/developer a great deal of voice in the type of building and uses that will be permitted in the park. As these restrictions are tied to the deed, it gives the owner/developer the legal right to enforce those restrictions and thereby maintain the high standards of the development. These restrictions also protect the investment of the purchasers by ensuring that only appropriate and attractive facilities will be located in their area.
In some instances a municipality may have zoning ordinances covering the items required under the Protective Covenants section. If the business park does not provide for specific covenants, the zoning ordinance will be accepted if, in the opinion of MEDA and the inspectors, the ordinance provides similar protections for the site owners within the park as would be provided by specific protective covenants that meet the criteria listed below. For certification purposes, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the Michigan Economic Developers Association have determined that the covenants/zoning ordinances will at a minimum include the following:
1. Compatible Uses
2. Types of Building Materials
3. Park Signage
5. Improved Parking
6. Screened Outdoor Storage
7. Location of Loading Docks
8. Continuous Management
9. Setback Specifications
10. Signage Requirements
A copy of the protective covenants should be attached to each deed and signed by each new owner and the applicant shall certify that each owner from the date of this application forward shall execute a copy of the protective covenants at the time of property purchase.
The park owner/developer/manager shall send to the Michigan Economic Developers Association the following materials: (see Join the Program for all application materials) the fully completed Certified Business Park application, a list of tenants, a copy of the approved site plan or plat, and a copy of the operating protective covenants and restrictions and applicable community zoning ordinances not covered in the covenants. An evaluation may be made as to the park’s eligibility for certification.
Failure to meet any of the above requirements upon filing the application or during the on-site inspection will deem the park uncertified. The park owner/developer/manager will then have 90 days to bring the park up to these standards for another on-site inspection. After this 90 day period a new application must be filed.
MCBP Program is a State program administered by the Michigan Economic Developers Association.