View Full Version : Question for owners of Haunted Trails & Hayrides

06-13-2012, 02:20 PM
We are close to acquiring 69 acres of land with the start of a Western town built on it - My question is how do we approach building permits?? Do we need a permit for each and every shack we want to add to the trail....do we just say hey we want to build things but we aren't sure where or how many there will be?

I looked at the township building permit page and it said a permit is required for the building of any structure...Will I need to go apply for a permit every time I want to add a small shack or facade?

This will all be new to me as we have never had to apply for permits before and I want to make sure I don't approach them with no clue of what I should be asking for.

Thanks for any help on this - We are in Northern Michigan, I know most states have their own take on this....and I know it even trickles down to each township having their own rules, but any input on this could help me start looking in the right direction - Oh and the land is zoned commercial.

06-13-2012, 03:02 PM
Facades shouldn't need a permit, structures are mainly "will people go through, under, above, on, or between" what you build. If its a flat facade that is purely aesthetic, nowhere I've dealt with or saw required a permit. If you're doing a maze, you will most likely need a layout, however you may not need a permit if you don't put a roof on it, since most outdoor trails just need to meet safety requirements like certain sized walkways and such. Theres a trail five minutes from me that doesn't have permits or layouts or anything....they just barely meet the walkway code.

Allen H
06-13-2012, 03:08 PM
Approach them with out a clue. the worst people for them to deal with are the ones who think they know what they are doing and do not. They are the ones who can tell you what you need- not anyone on this board unless they are in the same county, zoning, and state as you are.
Allen H

Marr Branch
06-13-2012, 07:38 PM
It is easier to ask for forgivness, than it is for permission.

06-13-2012, 08:37 PM
Permits are different in every area so start with your local people. I can tell you that any building over 1000 sq. feet will start getting into more problems like fire sprinklers etc. so if you do build buildings I would try to keep them under 1000 sq. feet. Keep the correct path of egress and fire exits and an extinguisher nearby and the fire codes shouldn't be bad. On the building codes the local officials will have to make that call.

06-14-2012, 05:53 AM
Thanks for the input everyone - I know that everything will hinge on my townships rules and laws, I was just seeing what others have dealt with just as examples. I am aware of the 1000 sq/ft law here in Michigan I have had to deal with it for 20 years :)

Im trying to decide how to approach this - I have had a few people tell me my best bet is to just build the small structures...Most will be under 200 sq/ft without asking because by asking I could be opening a can of worms. Others say make sure to ask permission on everything I do.

The current owner of the property told me he built the majority of the structures <Barn, Saloon, and two smaller western style structures> without permits - but then he never started inviting the public out there for events like I plan to do.

I have always been one to get the fire marshal in on things early - just deciding if it's my best option to do the same when it comes to the township.