The Mayor revealed that in the current Spring 2014 edition of the Hills Highlights, the official newsletter of the City. Writing in a front page article she claimed "the only thing official about the news (of the for sale status) is that it is true !"
She then adds, "That when the sale officially takes place, we predict the site will be one more inviting destination in the fair City of Bloomfield Hills."
The matter was discussed at the March City Commission meeting under the catch all topic "other business" which usually occurs at the last item on the Agenda. While not mentioned by name the predominant location of the Kinsley was hinted at, as was the fact that it is zoned differently on three of the four sides. The rooms on the second floor of the motel like adjacent structure also present zoning problems.
Commissioner Sherr said the proposed sale was perfect for a PUD or Planned Unit of Development.
According to the Michigan Association of Planning, a PUD is a development processes that ties the a site plan to zoning approval and allows modification of zoning standards where innovative design can achieve significant benefits to the community. Mixed land is usually the key in a PUD. It has also been said that PUDs are all about negotiation between City and Developer.
There are requirements for a PUD and one of them is minimum site area. Commissioner McClure said a PUD was more applicable when considering something large like the sale of a golf course. Significant natural features or unique site characteristics are also requirements.
The Plaza Shopping Center on Woodward at Long Lake is a recent example of a PUD for development purposes. Today it is still debated today as to whether the City or developer or for that matter the city residents got the best deal of that PUD. There the property was much larger than the Kingsley's It also had uphill topography on two sides, and was intended to replace a gas station and historic building with a shopping center, and parking while maintaining a pleading countenance.
Most recently at the April City Commission meeting that PUD was revisited with an amendment to replace the closed Fox Grill with another restaurant. Visible outdoor topics of discussion in the amendment approval process included signage, entrance awning, and landscape.
In the City of Bloomfield Hills as every citizen and City official knows however, "For sale" is not absolute. In many cases the"for sale" sign (if there even is one) means "just fishing" It is a bit of a game in the City of Bloomfield Hills. So stay tuned.