The Village of Lake Orion Construction Board of Appeals hears appeals and renders and files decisions on matters related to the Michigan State Construction Code within thirty (30) days after submission of the appeal. The Construction Board of Appeals comprises five (5) members appointed by the Village Council who serve for two-year terms. Board members are compensated at the rate of $50.00 per meeting per member. Current board members are:
Steve J. AugerTerm Expires: 05/01/2015
Philip D. GentileTerm Expires: 01/01/2015
Richard HamiltonTerm Expires: 05/01/2015
Mike L. ReynoldsTerm Expires: 05/01/2015
Robert SmithTerm Expires: 05/01/2015
The Village and Township Building Official/Inspector is:
Tom BergerCharter Township of Orion2525 Joslyn RoadLake Orion, MI 48360(248) 391-0304 ext. 124
Zoning is a method of land-use planning used by local governments in most developed countries. The word is derived from the practice of designating permitted uses of land based on mapped zones which separate one set of land uses from another. Zoning may be use-based (regulating the uses to which land may be put), or it may regulate building height, lot coverage, and similar characteristics, or some combination of these. Similar urban planning methods have dictated the use of various areas for particular purposes in many cities from ancient timesThe Village of Lake Orion is a zoned community. All buildings, structures, uses, and parcels of land must comply with the regulations set forth in the Village Zoning Ordinance, (link to Zoning Ordinance). A Zoning Compliance Permit is required for all new, changed, altered, or moved uses or occupancies of land or any buildings or structures, including excavations and construction. Contact the Village of Lake Orion Planning and Zoning Coordinator with Zoning questions and/or applications for Zoning Compliance, Building, Signs, Fences, Temporary Uses, Uses of Public Land, Excavating, Change of Use or Occupancy of Commercial Buildings, Site Plan / Special Land Use, Land Development, Rezoning or Variances from the Zoning Ordinance. Village of Lake OrionPlanning and Zoning Coordinator 37 E Flint StLake Orion Michigan 48362248.693.8391 x107248.693.5874 fax
Planning & Zoning Coordinator is Michael Gradis
Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 9:00 am to 4:30 pm
The Village of Lake Orion has a very historic past. One of the first settlers to arrive from Detroit was Nathan Hemingway, who arrived in 1828. He traveled on a road so rough it required two days journey to travel 26 miles. A year later, Philip Bigler and Jesse Decker arrived and purchased a tract of land, where they erected a dam to unite several lakes into one large body of water: Lake Orion. They also constructed a sawmill below the present dam site. The waters of the Paint Creek powered machines that cut logs into board lumber and ground wheat into flour that was critical to early settlers. In 1832 the sawmill was burned by vengeful Indians, angry because they were refused whiskey.
In 1844 the first schoolhouse was built on the corner of Church and Anderson Streets. This building is still standing and is now a private residence. In 1854 the name of the town was changed to Orion, though local wags continued to call it Dogway. Some historians have stated that Dogway was a contraction of Canandaigua. Others claim the town was overrun by a pack of stray dogs. Orion was incorporated into a Village in 1859.
When the railroad came in 1872, Orion took rapid strides forward. Travelers discovered the rare beauty of the Village surrounded by lakes. In 1874 a group of men purchased what was later to be called Park Island, constructing a bridge to the mainland, a dance hall, a viewing tower and an amphitheatre. Trains made four daily trips to the Village, bringing thousands of people to the area.
In 1884 a pagoda was erected over the Orion Mineral Spring by Harold Emmons. The water was claimed to be beneficial to the kidneys and the liver. In 1891 the Orion Improvement Company bought Spencer Island (Bellevue), where a hotel was erected.
The Village had three major fires in its downtown: 1862, 1874 and 1899. Each time, the town was almost completely destroyed. Each time residents re-built the town. In 1899 Orion had one and a half miles of sidewalk, a great feat for a small town. This year saw the greatest boom the Village had ever seen. Churches were attracted to the idea of a permanent spot for religious conventions. The Assembly Resort Association was formed, purchasing Bellevue Island and much of the shore property.
Park Island became an amusement center, complete with a roller coaster. In 1909 the Marine Postal Center was established, with mail delivered to over three hundred cottages on the lake and islands. Orion was the first town in the United States to have this service.
In 1919 Main Street was paved, and in 1927 a new school was built. In 1928 the name of the Village was officially changed from Orion to Lake Orion. A new well was added in 1930 to offset the dangers of fire, which had plagued the town so many times.
Present day Lake Orion is a mixture of the old and the new, conservative and progressive, fun and hard work. It has truly become a place “Where living is a vacation.”
The Department of Public Works facility is located at 362 Cass Street at the intersection of Atwater and Perry streets. The facility includes offices and storage for equipment and materials. DPW hours are Monday – Friday, 7:00 AM to 3:30 PM. You can reach the department by calling (248) 693-1463 or by E-mail to the Public Works Director at
. For after-hours emergencies, please call the Lake Orion Police Dispatch non-emergency number at (248) 693-8321.
Meet Your Public Works Director...
Jeff Sears joined the Village of Lake Orion team in January 2009. He has been the Director of Public Works since August 2013 and previously served the Village as Roads and Grounds Foreman and general laborer. Jeff has been active in Public Works for the past 12 years, starting out working for the City of Davison at the age of 18. Jeff has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan in Public Administration and belongs to many professional organizations such as the Michigan Rural Water Association, American Public Works Association, and the American Water Works Association. Jeff holds an S-3 Drinking Water License from the State of Michigan and is the Operator in Charge of the water distribution system. Jeff also serves as Cemetery Sexton and advises the Cemetery Board and Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee.
Meet Your Department of Public Works Staff...
Ken Kuss has served the Village for 40+ years. He brings a vast amount of knowledge to our crew from cemetery operations to the water distribution system to park maintenance. Ken is commonly looked to by other department staff for insight and training.
Jeremy Richert joined the Village team in August 2012. He came to us from the City of Pontiac Water Department. We value Jeremy’s knowledge in water system maintenance and repairs. Jeremy also has a background in auto and small engine repair. Be on the lookout for Jeremy when he reads water meters every quarter. Jeremy is currently seeking his first water operator’s license with the State of Michigan.
Dave Safford also joined our ranks in August 2012. Dave has a very extensive public works background working for other municipalities such as Ferndale and Grand Rapids. We look to Dave often for his horticultural abilities and the distinct way he pays attention to details. Dave is very skilled in leaf collection and snow plowing and is often utilized for these activities.
Brandon Wyke came to work for the Village in June 2013. Brandon brings a vast knowledge of park maintenance skills, having previously worked for Independence Township Parks and Recreation for several years. Brandon also has several other skill sets including vehicle and equipment maintenance.
About the Department...
The Department of Public Works is responsible for maintaining, evaluating and repairing the Village's infrastructure including roads, building and grounds, parks, and water and sewer systems. The DPW is on call 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, including holidays, to respond to snow and ice emergencies, water system failures, storm damage, and any other emergency related to public works that may arise. The DPW provides fall and spring leaf collection and also controls the water levels of Lake Orion.
The DPW also has the task of operating and maintaining Eastlawn and Evergreen cemeteries. This includes everyday maintenance such as mowing, trimming and snow plowing and performing internments on a regular basis.
DPW does not maintain the Village's sanitary sewer system. This work is contracted to the Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner's Office. WRC can be reached for general questions at (248) 858-0958. If you have an emergency relating to your sanitary sewer, please call (248) 624-6366.
The village provides rubbish collection services through contract with Rizzo Environmental Services.
The Department of Public Works will be performing Fall leaf pickup during the weeks of October 21 through November 25.