• By Dana Casadei

Basketball hoops, play structures get go ahead

Bloomfield Township Trustees on Monday, August 24, unanimously approved a new zoning ordinance which will permit basketball apparatuses and play structures in the township. “If we’re a family community then we should do what we can to ensure that there is enjoyment for the kids in their own yards,” said supervisor Leo Savoie. Previously, residents had to apply to the zoning board of appeals (ZBA) in order to install basketball hoops and play structures, as they were considered accessory structures. Patti Voelker, director of planning, building and ordinance, said that after looking at those who appealed to the ZBA for those instances over the last 10 years, they found very few times they weren’t approved. Voelker said the ZBA was very supportive of the draft language for this ordinance. The new ordinance requires basketball hoops, either garage-mounted or with a pole, to be no more than 14-feet in height, contiguous to the driveway, no more than one per home, and if located in the rear yard, to have a setback 16-feet from side and rear lot lines. For play structures, they are only permitted in the rear yard, they cannot exceed 14-feet in overall height, must use neutral earth tone colors for any shade canopies, and have a setback minimum of 16-feet from side and rear lot lines. Sport courts are not permitted under the ordinance. The specific standards are based off of polling the department did in adjoining communities, including Birmingham and West Bloomfield. The provision becomes effective seven days after publishing.

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