Lyon Township may soon establish regulations that would permit winemakers and distillers in the municipality.

At a recent meeting, township officials introduced an ordinance that would amend the municipality’s wine-making and distiller regulations, permitting both in the township’s General Business District and the Core and Edge Sub-Areas of the New Hudson Zoning District. Under the amended regulations, small makers and distillers would be added as special land uses in the Residential-Agricultural and General Commercial Districts.

Small winemakers are defined by the state as those that do not manufacture or bottle more than 50,000 gallons a year, while small distillers cannot manufacture more than 60,000 gallons of spirits annually. Officials say the goal of amending the ordinance is to promote economic growth, while also preventing development of winemakers and hard cider producers that are out of scale or out of character with the surrounding land use.

In addition to permitting small winemakers, distillers and hard cider producers, the proposed changes would better define each sector and clarify regulations regarding the establishments. The township’s Planning Commission recently reviewed and approved proposed amendments to the ordinance that speak to parking, setbacks, impact on surrounding properties and other housekeeping issues. Having introduced the new ordinance, the Board of Trustees must next officially adopt it. (DK)