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10-15-11

     Oaklands Subdivision

     Halloween Party Time!


  2011 Halloween Party at the home of Rick and Trish Kaye  

  29915 Greenboro

  When:      Monday – October 31

  Time:       5:30pm to 8:30pm

  Pizza and snacks for kids and adults prior to trick or treating – then kids will go out in a group with adult supervision; – other adults can stay and visit and party until they return.

  Please call Rick & Trish Kaye at 248-538-1370 if you have any questions.
 
 
                                            SEE you THERE !!!!!    

7/13/10

Annual Meeting / Sub Picnic to be held on Sunday July 18.

Oaklands Sub Annual Meeting will be held on Sunday, July 18th at 12:30 in the rear yard of 30225 Ardmore, just prior to our Annual Subdivision Picnic.

The Picnic will begin at 1:00 and end about 4:00, also at 30225 Ardmore.  Water slide will be here once again, and the pool will be available to those interested in cooling off!

Food will be provided by the Sub.  Feel free to bring a dish to pass, if you'd like.

See you there!

7/23/09

Watering times and days have been recommended by Farmington Hills to help control water rates, for those of us connected to the system and not on wells.

Recommended hours to run your automatic sprinkler systems are from Midnight to 6:00 am.

Even numbered home addresses water on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.
Odd numbered home addresses water on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday.

6/3/09

Annual Subdivision Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, June 18th at 7:30. It will be held again at Fire Station #2, on Middlebelt between 12 Mile and 13 Mile Rd.

The Picnic will be on Sunday, July 19th, again at 30225 Ardmore in the back yard.

Dues notices have been sent out June 3rd, so watch for them in the mail.


4/21/09

2009 Dues notices will be sent out soon.  Busy year again, so we're a bit behind.  Will have the Annual Meeting in summer, probably in June again.

Foreclosures continue to burden us.  More due to show up in the next few months.  We try to stay on top of those that are pending, to ease the transition to Bank ownership, as the process tends to be a bit chaotic.  Staying on top of them and letting the brokers know we have an active Homeowners Association seems to help keep up the image of our sub, so I believe it's worth the effort.

Bill

10/22/08

Voter Ballot Info

I always like to know what the teacher will be asking about before a test.  If you would like to know what you'll be asked to vote on BEFORE you walk into the voting booth on November 4th, visit the Michigan.gov website to see a copy of the ballot for our area.  You can get there from the City's website, or take the shortcut below....

Copy and paste into your web browser address bar the following to link to the ballot and see the list of candidates and issues to vote on:

https://services2.sos.state.mi.us/mivote/DynamicBallot.aspx?si=218457&dt=11%2f4%2f2008+12%3a00%3a00+AM&cnty=Oakland&jd=Farmington%20Hills%20City&pct=002&wd=00

Remember our voting location has CHANGED from North Farmington HS to Orchard Methodist Church on Farmington Rd between 13 and 14 Mile Rd!

Also, if you need some info about the candidates to make a more informed choice on some of the more obscure contests, you can pick up a Voter Guide at the Clerk's desk at City Hall.  It's published by the League of Women Voters.  (Not all candidates have input, as their write-up may have missed the deadline for publication.)


Keep your home secure from theft


Just a reminder to Oaklands residents that with times being as tough as they are, more theft and break-ins may be occurring.   Please be diligent to protect your own property, and watch out for your neighbors!


Oaklands Sub avoids Mixed Use zoning….for now

9/19/08

 
Thursday night at the 9/18 Planning Commission meeting, we dodged the bullet regarding the Master Plan proposal to re-zone the office and business section of our sub along Orchard Lake Road to an overlay Mixed Use zoning.  Instead, they voted 6 - 2 to extend the Business Redevelopment classification all the way to Firwood from Party City, where it had stopped.  The following is an exert from the description of this new classification, which certainly sounds more appropriate for our section.

 

    "....areas that were developed before zoning requirements....do not have the setbacks required by the (existing) ordinance....Buildings are vacant or are in need of repair or improvement.  The primary objective of the plan is to facilitate redevelopment of these areas by altering the applicable zoning standards so that improvements to existing sites and buildings will be encouraged."

 

Removing the Mixed Use classification is good, because it will prevent an easy application of a powerful Corridor Improvement Authority in our section, which had the potential to wipe out homes along Westfield and the east side of Green Acres.

 

HOWEVER, as pointed out by one of the Planning Commissioners, the City Council can still decide to proceed with the Corridor Improvement Authority if it decides to, by changing the zoning classification to meet the requirements.  The Planning Commission only recommends action to the City Council.  We will need to constantly monitor activity at City Council meetings into the future, as long as the current Mayor, various Council members and the City Manager have a desire to create a New Urbanism style Central Business district along Orchard Lake from 12 Mile to 14 Mile.  (City Council Meeting Agendas are available on-line at the city website, or copy and paste this address to see the schedule - http://www.fhgov.com/egov/apps/document/center.exe?fDD=3-0&fCS=&path=browse&id=1)

 

Thanks to those residents who attended meetings or wrote letters expressing concern for the direction the Master Plan had us heading in.  The overwhelming sentiment of city residents who attended and spoke out at the Public Hearings was against the style of development the city envisions for Orchard Lake Rd, and certainly had an impact on the commissioners.  Let's hope the Mayor and City Council members were watching the cable channel broadcast of the meeting.

 

Special thanks to Rick Kaye and Joan Char for their participation last night!

 
Farmington Hills Master Plan Zoning Change Proposals - Impact on Oaklands Sub

 
8/31/08

 
            Recently, you may have heard a lot of talk about the new Master Plan for Farmington Hills.  There is a portion that impacts our sub, along the Orchard Lake Road frontage from 13 Mile to Firwood.  The current draft would change the existing Business B-2 and Office 0S-1 zoning to a NEW zoning type, called Mixed Use.  The details of what this new zoning entail are not defined, and wouldn’t be until after passage of the Master Plan.  We have been told that it includes Office, Business and Residential (lofts) on the same site, and could be from 4 to 5 stories in height (40-50 feet).  Our current zoning for Business allows 4 stories; Office allows 3 (for reference, the current structures in our area are only 1 story tall for the businesses, and 2 stories for the office buildings). 

 

            This by itself is not a big change for the sections currently zoned B-2, if restricted to the 4 story height (or 40 feet).  We are told that Public input will be possible on specifics of the zoning, and as always, in the review of any proposed developments on the lots in the future.  There certainly is potential for our community to benefit from re-developing the old sections of the business strip.  The concern that has developed is from other potential changes that have been reported, which could impact the homes on the east end of our subdivision along Westfield and Green Acres.

 

            In December 2005, a new State law was passed, allowing the creation of a Corridor Improvement Authority (CIA), similar to a Downtown Development Authority, which allows communities to designate older sections of a main road for re-development, with provisions to streamline some of the typical restrictive procedures.  One of the requirements is that the property involved be zoned for Mixed Use (see above!).  A proposal for a CIA area along Orchard Lake was presented to City Council on June 9th, with boundaries drawn that would place the homes on the east side of Green Acres and all those along Westfield inside the development area.  The concept was viewed favorably by the Mayor and Council. 

 

            Though Eminent Domain does not allow the taking of homes to pass property ownership to a private developer, it potentially could be used to acquire property for Public use, including Public Parking.  In the July ‘08 edition of the Farmington Gazette, Steve Brock, City Manager for Farmington Hills, told the reporter that he was proposing re-developing a ½ mile stretch of Orchard Lake north of 13 Mile as a “New Urbanism” development.  These designs push the structures up close to the road, placing parking in the rear.  However you view this style of development, it seems possible to do, except for the next concern.

 

            Orchard Lake Road from 12 to 14 Mile is slated to become a Boulevard, similar to what was done to the section from 10 Mile to 696.  The design for this is currently being worked on between RCOC and Farmington Hills, but there is not enough easement in many of the older business sections to accommodate the wider road.  I believe much of the frontage property of the businesses will be taken, leaving them with very shallow lots, and severe parking issues.  If the re-development discussed above is to take place, rear parking will have to be provided for.  This could mean using Eminent Domain to obtain home sites in Oaklands Sub for Public Parking.

 

            If you would like to voice your concerns, I suggest you write both the Planning Commission and City Council members.  City Council has some say in the Master Plan and other aspects of the above proposals.  The local newspapers have been reporting that the Planning Commission will hold a meeting on Sept 4th to hear public input on the Mixed Use zoning areas of the Master Plan.  However, the agendas that were published on August 22nd for the upcoming month do not include this item in the September 4th Study Session meeting.  The next opportunity for public input is on September 18th, when they’ll hold a Public Hearing on the Revised Master Plan.  The meeting on the 4th will include a discussion of the Corridor Improvement Act by the City Attorney, who has been instrumental in implementing CIA’s in Independence Twp and Waterford Twp.  There also is a discussion of building height and a Legal Opinion on Master Plan by the attorney.  It may be well worth attending.  Be aware it will NOT be broadcast on Cable channel 8, as it is a Study Session.  Only Public Hearings are broadcast.  Meetings are held at City Hall at Orchard Lake and 11 Mile, in Council Chambers room, at 7:30.

 

City meeting agendas are available at the Planning Commission desk or on-line at the Farmington Hills website.                   http://www.ci.farmington-hills.mi.us/

On the top tool bar, go to Government; Agendas/Minutes; Boards and Commissions on the right drop-down, then click the circled check.  When the list comes up, click on the specific meeting you want to see.  You can also view past meeting minutes from here.


August 27, 2008   Another interesting meeting took place way back on February 22, 2007.  Involved discussion on the Master Plan and it's impact on the Orchard Lake Road Corridor.  6 pages of very interesting notes at:

http://www.fhgov.com/egov/docs/1174330800_74951.pdf


July 31, 2008    I've found a bit more info on the Corridor Improvement Authority for Orchard Lake Rd and our area.  I suggest you take a minute and read a bit about it, especially the minutes from the City Council meeting.  

Farmington Hills City Council and Mayor Ellis held a meeting on June 9th with the topic Discussion Regarding the Corridor Improvement Authority.  It was a presentation by City Manager Steve Brock and Assistant Manager Nate Geinzer.  4 pages of minutes from the meeting are available at the City's website.  The address is: 

http://www.fhgov.com/egov/docs/1216327474_680664.pdf 

I also did a quick Google search on Corridor Improvement Authority and found some interesting background and requirements for the new law allowing for this type of government activity on Waterford Township's website.   
http://twp.waterford.mi.us/cpd/corridor_improvement_authority.htm 

One notable requirement is that zoning must exist that allows mixed use development, which is what the revised Master Plan does to the zoning for our area of Orchard Lake Rd. The address for the Waterford Twp. CIA Summary Outline document is: 
http://twp.waterford.mi.us/cpd/pdf/Corridor_Improvement_Authority_Act_Summary.pdf 

Go to page 5 and check the details under Does It Meet The Basic Requirements (line f).  

Regarding the use of Eminent Domain to acquire private property - they can use it if they need to for public use such as a Public Parking lot, so even though the position of the city may indicate they won't use it for the developers to personally gain property, it still may come into play.

July 27, 2008       Proposed Changes to City Master Plan may impact our neighborhood.  Please read the info below.  The scope of the Corridor Improvement Authority, which may come about after approval of the Master Plan, would include homes on Westfield and Green Acres (see maps - note yellow highlighted perimeter area along Orchard Lake Rd north of 13 Mile).

The map below shows the area for development in the draft Corridor Improvement Authority
The map below is from the City's Draft Master Plan
Note the redevelopment reference to the half mile stretch of Orchard Lake Rd north of 13 Mile in the article below
8/1/08

The following pages are from the City's Master Plan draft, and pertain to our subdivision.

Pages 71 - 76 talk about Mixed Use developments (note the referance to parking behind buildings, possibly in the form of Public Parking lots).

Pages 87 - 88 talk about problems with designating Orchard Lake from 12 Mile to 14 Mile as a Central Business District as called for in the City's Sustainability Study (see paragraph 2).

Pages 92 - 96 discuss various Zoning ordinances and the new technique of Overlay Zoning and Mixed Use Development.
  • Oaklands Annual Meeting Minutes

    Tuesday, June 10, 2008

     

     

    Bill Hass opened the meeting at 7:35 p.m. and introduced the Board Members.                                                                          

    Changes in home ownership

    °        2 new neighbors

    °        2 homes for sale have scheduled closings

    °        4 homes are for sale (including 2 – 3 foreclosures)

     

    Treasurer’s Report                                                 

    °        Treasurer, Rajiv Shah reported that 62 homes of the 112 have already paid the $20 dues

    °        Rajiv is closely tracking dues payments.  Bill indicated that when homes go up for sale, the realtors and title companies are informed of the dollar amount of the lien for dues that needs to be collected.

    °        Balance in the treasury as of June 10 - $5,128.98

    °        Approximately $200 year-to-date expenses for COHA Membership, printing the phone book and flyers and postage for Dues mailing.

    °        Biggest yearly expense is the picnic.

     

    Area Changes

    °        New Taco Bell – the entrance onto Bond for construction traffic will be closed before the opening. They need the space for parking.

    °        AT&T installed new equipment on Ravine in preparation for new service offerings (alternate to Cable / Satellite TV).

    °        A new CITY MASTER PLAN DRAFT has been presented to the council. Our area is impacted. Some residents may have received flyers about the upcoming changes. The board does not know who distributed them. Any resident interested in the details can find the draft on line. The plan shows what areas will allow taller buildings / ”mixed use” and it impacts Orchard Lake Rd - widened to Boulevard.   If you review it, you might start about page 71.

    °        Access to the Draft Master Plan is through the City’s website http://www.ci.farmington-hills.mi.us/   Click on the “Master Plan for Future Land Use – Draft” note on the right tool bar (it’s a large file -18.45 MB - and takes some time to download).

    °        City is upgrading [to concrete] the Bond path in Canterbury Commons.

    °        City is working with new owners of the office property at Firwood and Westfield to improve the corner landscaping.

    °        A second Group Home is located on Gladstone between Ravine and Firwood.  It is a rental situation for now, run by the same organization.

    °        DPW re-installed posts at corner of Greenboro and Ravine.

    °        Bond paving is again being proposed.  Of 15 homes on Bond, 5 are “automatic yeses” because of prior agreements. Fifty-one percent of the home owners must vote yes before the project can proceed. Last estimate several years ago --- cost to homeowners on Bond at $2,000 per year for 10 years.

     

    Activities - Social

    °        Halloween and Holiday Gathering/Cookie Exchange last fall/winter

    °        Spring neighborhood clean up in May – thank you to all the helpers!

    °        This year’s picnic is scheduled for July 19th.

    °        Halloween party this year is scheduled for October 31.

    °        Holiday Cookie Exchange to be scheduled in December.

    °        Anyone wishing to volunteer their homes for the Halloween or Cookie parties please contact one of the board members.

    °        Block Captains/Neighborhood Watch volunteers needed – 2 Block Captains: 

            Gladstone between Firwood and Ravine, and Westfield

    Contact Rick Kaye if interested in becoming a Block Captain in these areas.

                           

     

    Other Items

    °        Website was off line temporarily – it is up again http://oaklandssub.org

    °        New phone directory has been distributed

    °        Remember – all dogs must be on a leash when not in their own yard. Please do not let your dogs wander and make sure all waste is picked up when walking your animals.

    °        Residents thanked Bill for monitoring the status of foreclosed homes and making sure properties maintained their appearance during the transition.  Bill also works well with the city on road, property and drainage issues.

     

     
    Board Elections

    °        No motions made to change the current board members.

    o      President: Bill Hass

    o      Secretary: Christine McComas

    o      Treasurer: Rajiv Shaw

    o      Director: Jeanne Colburn

    o      Neighborhood Watch: Rick Kaye

     

    Resident Eva Januszewska thanked Bill and all the neighbors who helped her in her recent move.

     

    Homeowners from 13 homes were present at the meeting.

     

    The meeting adjourned at 8:20 p.m.

     
5/1/08

                                                                                                                                                              



3/12/08      The new Farmington Hills Master Plan (Draft) is now available on the City website.  The following will get you directly to the report, but be aware it is a large file and takes some time to download.    http://www.fhgov.com/egov/docs/1205266354_913665.pdf   Of interest is the proposal to re-do Orchard Lake Rd and the businesses around it, along with creating a Boulevard where we now have a 5 lane road.  RCOC also has on their long term plans to build a round-about at the 13 Mile intersection.  Maps reflecting these changes are found toward the end of the report, on pages 108 and 110.  Details of what is involved can be found in the body of the report.


Upcoming changes to businesses along our stretch of Orchard Lake Rd are shown on the map below.  Homes for sale this month (March, '08), both Foreclosed and not, are also shown.

                                                  * New news on Businesses along Orchard Lake *  

ABC Warehouse is planning a move to the vacant Staples store south of Party City.  With CVS looking at moving into their own building on the SW corner, this will leave 2 sites (both owned by Kroger) in our strip mall available to new merchants.




Open garages continue to be a target for thieves in Farmington Hills and other Detroit suburbs.  Pass the word, "Keep garage doors closed", and remember to lock up at night, including your car.


  
DOOR TO DOOR SOLICITORS:

Any person conducting door-to-door solicitation must be licensed with the City and have picture identification (either from the City or the group they sponsor); except for those groups that are exempt from licensing provisions (only allowed under certain criteria such as persons soliciting within three miles of their residence for educational, charitable (501.C.3), religious or youth organizations including Jehovah Witnesses, Girl/Boy Scouts, Lions Club, Knights of Columbus, newspaper distributors, etc.)

Persons may solicit between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. only. We ask that exempt parties also adhere to these hours. There are certain environmental and political groups that are exempt from the City’s licensing provisions, however, they are still required to have picture ID and are asked to comply with local time requirements. 

If you do not wish to have solicitors come to your door, you may post a “No Soliciting” sign on your property. Solicitors are not permitted to solicit on property with a “No Soliciting” sign.

Please be advised that State law dictates that we cannot prohibit solicitation in Farmington Hills, but licensed solicitors must adhere to City ordinance requirements. If you experience an adverse situation with a solicitor or have any complaints, please contact the Police Department and/or the City Clerk’s Office and be able to identify the party’s name and group they are associated with, if possible.  

 
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