Zoning Ordinance Remote Access Standards

Asked May 4, 2018, 11:50 AM EDT

Keweenaw County is currently reviewing the Private Road access standards in its Zoning Ordinance. We are looking for sections from other rural zoning ordinances which may have a similar section. We have vast forests and private roads that meander through them. Large tracks of land are currently for sale. We are looking for advice.


1 Response


The April 1997 issue of Planning & Zoning News includes an article entitled “Background on Private Road or Road Easement Regulations.” The article details the minimum following elements that should be addressed in private road standards:

  • Right-of-way width
  • Maximum road length ending in a cul-de-sac
  • Maximum number of parcels served with a single connection to a public road
  • Circumstances under which the private road must be connected to other existing roads
  • Clear vision areas
  • Minimum turning radii
  • Subsurface materials and construction
  • Drainage requirements
  • Grade requirements
  • Pavement type
  • Shoulder width and surface
  • Driveway width requirements for those along a private road
  • Engineering review requirements
  • Maintenance requirements

Additionally, the January 1990 issue of Planning & Zoning News includes a more comprehensive article on the topic by attorney Clifford H. Bloom – “Regulating Private Roads.” Back issues of PZN can be ordered at: http://pznews.net/10601.html.

You might consider reading the following:

Hartill, A. May 2015. “Private road maintenance agreements: Facilitating neighborly relations.” Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law. http://www.mjeal-online.org/private-road-maintenance-agreements-facilitating-neighborly-relations/

Bloom, C. H. December 2001. “Navigating private road issues.” Michigan Township News, 10-15. http://www.bsmlawpc.com/municipal_law/PDF/Municipal_Articles/Navigating%20Private%20Road%20Issues.pdf

Horner, D., S. Mills, and T. Ivacko. July 2015. “Michigan local government leaders’ views on private roads.” The Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy. Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. University of Michigan. http://closup.umich.edu/files/mpps-fall-2014-private-roads.pdf