Plymouth Township revises proposed communal living and sober house ordinance. On agenda for October 12th

A proposed ordinance that would permit “Communal Living Facilities and Sober Living Environments” in the township’s residential zoning districts is on the agenda for Plymouth Township’s Council on Monday, October 12th. The ordinance is not before the council for approval, but for a second consideration (or review). The council is considering the ordinance to bring the township’s code into compliance with federal law.

The ordinance (view) has changed greatly since it was discussed during a September meeting. During the September 14th meeting, the proposed ordinance as drafted at that point limited the “Communal Living Facilities and Sober Living Environments” to the AA Residential Zoning District (which is generally located between the Plymouth Meeting Mall and Township Line Road). During an October 5th meeting, the decision was made to allow these types of homes in all residential districts.

The October 12th meeting will take place virtually at 7:00 p.m. You can find details on how to join the meeting on the township’s website.

During public comment on the September 14th meeting, residents of the township expressed concerns about the proposed ordinance. The concerns fell into two areas. One was that by limiting these types of homes to the AA district, it would effectively prohibit them as its the district with the most expensive real estate. The district also doesn’t have many sidewalks and many of the people who live in these types of homes do not drive. And that the homes in the AA district would be hard for those with physical disabilities to navigate.

The second type of concern was what impact these types of homes would have on a neighborhood. There is a parking requirement on the previous and current versions of the proposed ordinance to provide parking for staff and residents of the homes. There were also concerns about how many people would be permitted to live in one of these homes.

Below is the video of the discussion and comments from the September 14th meeting. That video is followed by the discussion on October 5th.