Dave Kudwa, PE, Community Development Director 
Phone:  (989) 224-8944 ext. 231
Fax:  (989) 224-2204

City of St. Johns Downtown Plan
2017 Annual Report
2012 Update of 2000 Community Development Plan
Zoning Map

Building and Zoning Permits

A Zoning Permit is required before a building, fence, or above-ground swimming pool is constructed on your property.  Applications are available at the City Offices.

Business Registration Requirements

A Building Permit is required for:

  • All commercial, industrial and residential buildings
  • A detached accessory building greater than 200 square feet
  • A residential deck that is any of the following:​
    • Attached to the house
    • More than 30 inches above grade
    • More than 200 square feet in area

Building, Electrical, Mechanical, and Plumbing Permits can be obtained at:

Clinton County Building Department 
100 E. State St. 
Suite 1300 (1st Floor) 
St. Johns, MI 48879 
Phone:     (989) 224-5181
E-Mail:     buildingdept@clinton-county.org
Website:  https://www.clinton-county.org/161/Building-Department


Signs placed on commercially zoned property require a permit.

  • A freestanding, or pylon sign is limited to 50 square feet in area, 30 feet in height, and one sign per lot.
  • Wall signs that cover up to 20% of the building face (height x width) are permitted.
  • Temporary signs may be used periodically upon approval.
  • Flashing lights or signs with mechanical movements are prohibited.
  • Electronic Message Center signs are permitted, but cannot shine onto residential property.

Signs on residentially zoned property are restricted to:

  • A "For Sale" or "For Lease" sign not greater than eight (8) square feet.
  • A 12" x 12" nameplate advertising an approved home occupation.
  • Political signs not exceeding 14 square feet.
  • Temporary garage sale and non-commercial signs.
  • Contractor signs not greater than 12 square feet while work is in progress on the property.

Please note:

 Signs Cannot be placed in the public right-of-way.
The above regulations are a summery--please contact his office before placing or erecting a sign.

Sign Ordinance

Planning Commission

The Planning Commission meets monthly on the second Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. to review requests for:

  • Site Plans
  • Special Use Permits
  • Rezonings

Applicants should consult with staff and submit preliminary plans as least 30 days before each scheduled meeting.

A Site Plan Review is required for:

  • New industrial, commercial, and multi-family buildings
  • Additions of more than 5,000 square feet to existing industrial, commercial, or multi-family buildings (more than 1,000 square feet if next to a residential district)
  • Parking lots consisting of more than ten (10) spaces

U.S. Census Bureau American FactFinder Statistics for the City of St. Johns

2010 Demographic Profile Data
2006-2010 Demographic and Housing Estimates
2006-2010 Selected Housing Characteristics
2006-2010 Selected Social Characteristics
2006-2010 Selected Economic Characteristics


The Zoning Board of Appeals meets when required to review requests for variances or for interpretations of the Zoning Ordinance.  It takes approximately 26 days to set a meeting date from the time of application.

Zoning Board of Appeals Application