The Community Development Department is responsible for the administering and maintaining of the City of St. Joseph Zoning Ordinance, Sign Ordinance, Land Division Ordinance, 2016 Master Plan and Downtown Vision Master Plan along with policies associated with the Downtown Development Authority

It works closely with Assessing, Engineering, Inspections, Public Safety and Public Works Departments in the enforcement of the documents and provides technical assistance to the public and development community regarding local regulations.

The Community Development Department also provides staff support to the Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, Downtown Development Authority, Planning Commission and Zoning Board of Appeals.


Kristen Gundersen SJCity

Contact Information

Director:                              This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
                                             Community Development Director/Zoning Administrator
Address:                             City Hall, 700 Broad Street, St. Joseph, MI 49085
Phone:                                269.983.1212
Fax:                                     269.985.0347

Brownfield Redevelopment Authority

The Brownfield Redevelopment Authority consists of five members appointed by the City Commission.

Downtown Development Authority (DDA)

The Downtown Development Authority Board (DDA) is responsible for carrying out tasks associated with the planning and improvement of the downtown area through a range of eligible public projects, including streetscape, landscaping or utilities along with assistance to developers in the improvement of real estate within the DDA boundaries.  The nine members are defined by state law and are appointed by the City Commission.

Floodplain or Special Flood Hazard Area Management

To learn more about Floodplain or the Special Flood Hazard Areas in the City of St. Joseph or the 2019 Preliminary revised Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) out for 90-day appeal process through the Federal Emergency Mangement Agency (FEMA) beginning December 19, 2020.

Planning Commission (PC)

In the City of St. Joseph, the Planning Commission (PC) is responsible for conducting public hearings and making recommendations to the City Commission on requests for map amendments (rezoning’s), special use permits, planned unit development, and text amendments (changes to the Zoning Ordinance).  They review certain sign requests and can approve requests for modifications.  In accordance with Michigan state law they are involved with the 5-year review of the Master Plan.  The nine members are city residents appointed by the City Commission.

Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA)

The Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) is a quasi-judicial board that interprets the Zoning Ordinance and Map, decides appeals of the Zoning Administrator decisions and hears dimensional variances requests.  There are five voting members and two alternates that are city residents appointed by the City Commission.


Applications –         

All documents include a pdf fill-in document with the directions. Incomplete applications will not be accepted.  A complete application along with all required materials and fees must be submitted, reviewed and accepted as administratively complete at least 24 days prior to the meeting date.

Administrative – City staff can review and approve.

Brownfield Redevelopment Authority

Planning Commission

Zoning Board of Appeals

Chapter 25 – Signs

 If you have any questions about these topics, please contact the Planning/Zoning Department and we will be glad to help you.





St Joseph Downtown Vision

Explore St. Joseph, MI