Zoning & Planning Services


The city has five zoning districts. Three single-family residential districts surround the central commercial district which includes a large planned unit development (PUD) area. Some areas near the commercial zone also allow multi-family residences along with single family uses. Each zone has different requirements for lot area, lot width, and building setbacks.

You can view your property location on the Zoning districts map and learn more by reading our Residential Zoning Quick Guide. You can also view a sample building permit application with drainage plan. To review our zoning ordinances in full, please read EGR's City Code and Ordinances

The zoning administrator reviews all building construction or remodeling plans and enforces city ordinances regarding fences, signs, dumpsters, and temporary storage units. The zoning administrator processes applications for zoning variances, appeals, land divisions, and site-plan reviews, and acts as the staff liaison to the Planning Commission and the City Commission. Some zoning applications require a public hearing before the City Commission (acting as the Zoning Board of Appeals).

Zoning Variances

If a project you are planning does not meet zoning requirements, you may apply for a variance, or exception from the rules. A public hearing before the City Commission (acting as the Zoning Board of Appeals) is required for all variances.

Historically, variances have been granted in cases of unique circumstances or practical difficulties, when the granting of a variance would not be a detriment to neighboring properties. A zoning variance application must be submitted along with the non-refundable application fee and a brief written statement explaining the request.
  • Scale drawings of the proposed project are required.
  • The time period from application to hearing is usually five or six weeks.
We suggest that you contact the zoning administrator to understand the zoning ordinance, determine the best course of action, and to confirm the deadlines for application.

Land Divisions (Lot Splits)

Land divisions, including lot line adjustments, require the approval of the City Commission following a public hearing. Each resulting parcel and the buildings on it must meet the requirements of the zoning district. The ordinance sets standards requiring the results to be compatible and harmonious with the surrounding area. View or download the land division application.

The Kent County Treasurer's office now requires a tax payment certification before a local municipality can approve a land division or property line adjustment. This approved certification must be submitted with your land division application. A copy of this Land Division Tax Payment Certification Form can be found here.

For more information, and contact the zoning administrator at 616-940-4817.

Other Zoning and Planning Services

The Zoning Department also administers the following:
The Zoning Administrator serves as the staff liaison to the City Commission and the Planning Commission, assisting in the processing of zoning review applications for special use permits, site plan reviews, rezoning, planned unit developments, and condominium projects. The City's Master Plan was adopted in 2018 and serves as a guide to the commissions in evaluating and reviewing these applications. Copies of the Master Plan are available for review or purchase at the Public Works Administration office.

For more information, or questions about these functions, contact the zoning administrator at 616-940-4817.