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Spring Lake residents sue over church driveway | News

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Spring Lake residents sue over church driveway
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SPRING LAKE, Mich. (WZZM) -- A proposed driveway is at the center of a legal dispute among a group of Spring Lake residents, a local church, and the local government.

Sixteen people have filed a lawsuit seeking to stop All Shores Wesleyan Church from building a driveway through their neighborhood on Fruitport Road.

"This isn't zoned for anything other than residential use," said neighbor Anita Moon, referring to property where the church plans to demolish a home it owns and build that driveway. She's afraid that will bring some of the heavy traffic from the church into the neighborhood.

"Anywhere from 300 to 400 vehicles turn west out of their driveway every Sunday morning," said Moon. "The traffic would be substantial, and, also, we would lose all of our privacy."

Now, Moon and 15 other residents are suing the church and the Village of Spring Lake to stop the driveway from being built. Opponents say the village manager allowed the plan to move forward without going to the zoning board or even the village council first.

"We have nothing against the church, but we're concerned about the process and how this was done, and whether it's legal or not," said concerned neighbor Richard Brown.

"If we don't take a stand now, they'll get away with doing whatever they want," said Moon.

WZZM 13 went to the Spring Lake village hall for a response. The village manager would not comment on the lawsuit or any decisions she made that may have upset some of the residents.

Now, Moon is calling on the village council to take action or she will.

"If the village council members don't discipline the village manager or fire her, either would be progress, then we do intend to circulate a petition to recall some of the village council or all the village council," said Moon.

It's a normally quiet neighborhood that's now decided to make some noise.

WZZM 13 also tried to reach church leaders, but they were unavailable for comment. Neighbors say the next court hearing in the case will be in mid-July.


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