Skip to Main Content Easy Reading Mode: Off
Site Search




Boardman River Townships Action Plans
A process designed to protect water resources by helping townships and villages assess their stormwater management. Project partners include the Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay, Grand Traverse Conservation District, and NMC’s Great Lakes Water Studies Institute.


Dark Skies Model Ordinance

Designed to help municipalities improve lighting ordinances by developing standards that reduce glare, light trespass, and skyglow.


Emmet County Scenic Resource District

This zoning district was established to protect the scenic resources along rivers, highways and streets, lake shores and impounding waters. 


Emmet County Viewshed Protection Overlay
In order to protect the many viewsheds and natural vistas that Emmet’s topography provides for, the County requires a number of construction and development standards. Planning for development requires a balance between preservation and construction practicality.


Filling the Gaps: Environmental Protection Options for Local Governments, Part I, the Big Picture
Because the environmental protection afforded by state and federal regulations is limited and local governments are the first line of defense , this guide provides information to assist local officials in making sound decisions for their communities when creating local land use plans, adopting new environmentally focused regulations, or reviewing proposed development. Part I frames the case for protecting the environment and what the government's role is.


Filling the Gaps: Environmental Protection Options for Local Governments, Part II, the Law of the Land
Part II discusses the natural resources that need protecting and how they are and are not regulated.


Filling the Gaps: Environmental Protection Options for Local Governments, Part III, Local Planning and Zoning
Part III discusses local planning and zoning. It covers many options and includes model ordinances.


Grand Vision Natural Resources Network

The guiding principle and mission of the Natural Resources Network is to protect and enhance the water resources, forest, natural areas and scenic beauty that preserve our quality of life and sustain our regional economy.


Leelanau Township Ridgeline Ordinance

In an effort to protect scenic views, the Township created an ordinance to govern the placement of houses and other buildings along ridgelines.


Low Impact Development: A Design Guide for Implements and Reviews (SEMCOG)
A guide to implementing low impact development (LID) to new, existing, and redevelopment sites in an effort to control runoff.


Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ)
The state agency responsible for protecting Michigan’s environment and public health. The DEQ is in charge of maintaining compliance with statutes that protect human health and the environment, and implementing air and water quality control programs. Services also include pollution prevention, permit coordination, incentive programs, environmental education, outreach, restoration activities and coordination, and more.


Michigan Department of Natural Resources
The state agency responsible for the conservation, protection, management, and the sustained use enjoyment of natural and cultural resources throughout the state. The DNR manages state parks, recreation areas, boat launches, state forest, fisheries, wildlife, and more. The agency also supports and facilitates natural resource-based economies.


New Designs for Growth Guidebook
The Guidebook demonstrates how thoughtful, quality design can improve our rural, suburban, and urban environments by creating sustainable developments of economic value that protect our natural resources. It includes proactive approaches to development in the region, and the techniques are applicable to both new development and to redevelopment projects.


Nonprofit Needs Assessment for Northwest Michigan

A needs assessment was developed in 2013-2014 to identify challenges for nonprofit organizations in the ten-county Northwest Michigan region, relative to resources, capacity, leadership, revenue, and other issues. The report identifies potential opportunities for addressing challenges experienced by the region's nonprofits in order to better adapt to changing trends and complex communitiy issues.  


Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network
The network works to protect natural communities in Northwest Michigan by managing and educating about terrestrial invasive plant species.


Planners Moments
An educational video-series for planning and zoning officials. The series offers practical planning information and techniques for topics that are most relevant to the region. Michigan State University Extension and NWMCOG are responsible for the series. 


Tip of the Mitt Watershed Local Ordinance Gap Analyses
A personalized guide for water protection that provides local government with a comprehensive look at water protection throughout the entire county. The analysis reviews all existing water resource protections at the county and township levels, offers recommendations for local approaches to protecting water, and makes suggestions for improvement. Copies of the Antrim, Charlevoix, and Emmet County (its service area) reports are available online.



Our Township greatly benefits from Network Northwest's experience, depth of knowledge and understanding. Because they work with so many diverse communities in our ten-county region they understand the local land-use issues and are already working on solutions by the time we realize we need some help.
- Susan Odom, Chair, Suttons Bay Township Planning Commission