Mega Church Hopes to Expand to Northville Location

Triumph Church owns property on Beck Road and is requesting a special land use approval from Northville Township.

A Christian church is hoping to get special land use approval from Northville Township's planning commission to open a location on Beck Road, between Five and Six Mile roads.

The site has previously been used as a church but some neighbors have expressed concerns about traffic and growth while others have shown support for a new congregation. The site has been vacant since 2008 but is being considered by the seven-member planning commission for approval, said Northville Township director of community development Jennifer Frey. 

The proposed church would be used as one of several locations that are part of Triumph Church's "Spiritual Beltway."

"The Spiritual Beltway represents the vision to more aggressively impact the secular population of Metro Detroit by eventually operating between four to six community campuses that are extensions of Triumph Church," according to the church website. "The vision aims to accommodate current membership needs and future growth by maintaining a level of intimacy within ministries and the worship-experience by offering locations within 30 minutes of the majority of the population in Metro Detroit. As one church in multiple locations, members and visitors would not have to endure extensive commutes to experience a Triumph worship service."

Calls to the church were not returned on Tuesday.

Some neighbors express concern

Triumph Church currently serves 15,000, according to its website. It is growing at a rate of about 4,000 members a year.

That is a concern for some in the Links of Northville Hills Condominiums across the street on Beck Road, which is home to residents in 133 units.

"We're not against churches," said president of the condo association Richard Millgard. "Our primary concern is the traffic on Beck Road and the addition of could be 2, 3, 4-thousand new members. We don't know."

Millgard said congestion on Beck Road is already high from Five Mile to Eight and Nine Mile roads. He said adding thousands of church-goers to the mix would only exacerbate the problem.

"If it's a mega church, it just creates more gridlock in the Northville area," Millgard said. He added that at some times of the day, traffic is bumper-to-bumper and slow-moving and he worries that church activities throughout the day might make the roads less safe with increased traffic.

In addition, Millgard said the potential development of the area adds another layer of traffic concern.

Township trustee and planning commission member Christopher Roosen said that the commission can place some controls on the size of the church and its uses and can also look into the issues raised by neighbors about congestion.

Roosen said that the 1,200-seat church also currently holds 505 parking spots.

"It surprised the (planning) commissioners that so many residents came out to the August meeting and expressed concerns given that the building and parking lot are already there," he said.

While the Beck Road church owns the land and multiple buildings on it – including a church, dormitories and school – the property is zoned as a special land use area. That means that the site requires a special public hearing, which took place Monday night, before it can be approved by the commission for use as a church. It has not yet been approved by the commission.

Further discussion will take place at a meeting on Sept. 25 at 7:30 p.m.

Come back to Northville Patch for updates on this story.

G sievert October 03, 2012 at 09:57 PM
To L, re: the Catholic Church, the lady of victory church, resides in downtown Northville MI. It has been at the current location at 133 Orchard for 89 years. This church is not in the township. The southern border of northville township is the north side of 5 mile.
L October 04, 2012 at 05:14 PM
City/Township - whatever. That is not the focus of the issue. If the church on Ridge and N. Territorial Roads is still managing despite your ridiculous concerns, than I am sure Triumph Church will work to ensure a seamless transition. I'm glad you're deciding not to move, because Triumph Church is! Hopefully, you'll decide to come and worship there.
L October 04, 2012 at 05:18 PM
Again - whether it is the City/Township of Northville - this is not the focus of the issue. People are making ridiculous concerns. Just as you would find a quicker route home during rush hour if a major hwy is busy, the same practice should be used if you know alot of people will be coming/going to church via a road on a Sunday morning. I wonder if you would have the same concerns if a major entertainment complex - i.e. nightclub would be opening there. Alot of traffic would occur on Friday and Saturday nights and possibly during the week as well. I'm sure you're concerns would not be the same.
Boiling October 04, 2012 at 08:57 PM
L: This IS part of the focus of your tirade! You spew bad information and now you want people to ignore your misinformation, own it! Your facts that you bring up are completely wrong. The funny thing about the Plymouth Township Mega Church is that they have continually lost, in Circuit Court, requests for modification to their site plan, a lesson that should be heeded by the Triumph Church. Many of us who have been in contact with the Township have voiced our concern regarding a change in the ZONING! So get it? It doesn't matter what, or who, wants to go on this site, if it deviates from the Master Zoning Plan then we are going to voice our opinion against it! Here’s a nice short read about Mega Churches: http://reclaimingjesus.blogspot.com/2012/05/are-megachurches-biblical-or-even-good.html. I’ll pass on your invite.
G sievert October 11, 2012 at 06:11 PM
To L. I moved here to get away from comercial establishments. I was looking for a bedroom community. I like the idea that my neighbors pay taxes, vote yes on school mills, kids play sports and walk to and from school knowing they are safe. also adults walk, bike and Enjoy life living without trash, junk cars, theft and excessive traffic in our neighborhoods. The traffic is bad enough during rush hour mon thru fri. No need for the excess on the weekends. Anything besides housing,parks or schools does not need to be in northville twp.
L October 11, 2012 at 07:17 PM
To G - It is wrong for you to to equate trash, junk cars, theft and excessive traffic in our neighborhoods to people that make up a church congregation. A 30 min traffic jam before and after service does equal "excessive." You should define excessive.
L October 11, 2012 at 07:19 PM
Northridge Church is located there - no problem. The Catholic church residing in the location that we WILL be moving too very soon.
ecnalubma October 12, 2012 at 02:02 AM
L: I'll take this one. Excessive: More than is necessary, normal, or desirable, exceeding what is usual, proper or necessary.
L October 12, 2012 at 02:15 AM
Attending church and having a relationship with Jesus Christ is necessary, normal, desirable, proper AND necessary.
ecnalubma October 12, 2012 at 02:15 AM
G sievert is speaking from their heart. L,you are drawing the correlation between your Mega Church and G’s description of an undesirable community, what gives? The Northridge Church you speak of has been nothing but problems, and they have lost many court battles. They are not a good neighbor and traffic is terrible on weekends and many nights of the week. BTW, the Beck Rd. site you want to occupy was never a church, in the strictest terms. They had a chapel for the residents, not for the public. They did not have weddings; they were not a parish church. L; again you need to get your facts straight, your lack of knowledge regarding this community is showing again.
G sievert October 12, 2012 at 01:33 PM
L. the two churches you mention are located in Plymouth twp or Plymouth. Not Northville twp or Northville.
J October 12, 2012 at 02:26 PM
I feel bad for the sport teams that have tournaments, games, etc at Community Park, as tournaments/games are all day Sundays. Good luck finding parking as this church is so large they actually have parking attendants and according to thier website "This ministry comprised of both men and women, serve in snow rain, and sunshine to assist guests in finding an open parking space and orchestrate the large number of cars coming in and out of the campus parking lots." http://www.triumphch.org/495601.ihtml
L October 12, 2012 at 02:39 PM
J - your comment is pointless. Just as sports are valued in your mind, we value attending church. Yes, parking attendant are there to direct the members where open spaces are and to ensure that everyone is parked appropriately. Did I miss your point?
J October 12, 2012 at 02:49 PM
It'll just be interesting how the police will deal with tournaments and church at the same time.... people already have to park at home depot across the street sometimes for festivals. All I have to say is I love living in Northville but will for sure avoid that area now.
L October 12, 2012 at 03:04 PM
The police will handle everything the same way they handle people going to work, school, leisure activities, etc. simultaneously. Am I missing a point?
J October 12, 2012 at 03:19 PM
Clearly you haven't been in that area for a tournament or festival.... it's not the typical work, school or leisure traffic. I'm sure my tax dollars will pay for the police to be out directing traffic even more! I'm guessing you are from the church and not a Northville Township resident as most residents know how bad that area will get.
Boiling October 12, 2012 at 04:11 PM
People have posted here to try to explain the unique characteristics of this area, to only be greeted with a diatribe of comments full of errors and remarks that they are racist, which is not true. The defenders of this Mega Church have not done their homework and want to press this issue in the name of religion, which is far from the truth. If this was about religion and worship, then the community and families already residing in the Township would be treated with respect, which has not been the case in many of the defenders of this zoning change. Other Religious leaders claimed that Mega Churches focus on personal morality issues while ignoring social justice; we have witnessed this to be the case here. This Church wants to locate here, and they don’t care about the effects that will be imposed on the community from the quality of life, to the impact on the Police and Fire Departments. Shame on them, shame on their leadership, and shame on the Township if they fold under their spiteful commentary.
Boiling October 26, 2012 at 05:18 PM
If you are following this subject: please attend this meeting http://www.twp.northville.mi.us/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=1399
L October 26, 2012 at 05:34 PM
Just because I have an opinion on a matter that you view differently does not mean that you aren't being treated with respect. We are (and you) are entitled to our own opinion. The bible states that everything should be done in decency and in order so I'm sure the church officials will strive to go above and beyond to ensure this will happen.
L October 26, 2012 at 05:38 PM
Yes, to my understanding the church does want to locate there. While I do highly believe that the church does a care about the effects that will be imposed on the community from the quality of life, I don't think it will be effected. Shame on you for thinking and assuming the leadership of the church is careless in deciding to expand to spread the good news of Jesus Christ across multiple communities in an attempt to impact communities and change the lives of people.
L October 26, 2012 at 05:44 PM
Had a major "entertainment" complex moved to the same location, that would cause alot of traffic to the area, I don't think we'd have as many negative comments as we've had because a church will be relocating to the area. It would be the same issue - traffic. I don't think a special meeting to hear the concerns of residents would be needed. You shouldn't be "boiling" as the work of God will continue to go forth in across many communities. If you're "boiling" now, imagine what hell is like.
Boiling October 26, 2012 at 09:04 PM
I accept no shame, we have never met so you do not know me, and I am proud to respectfully speak my mind. I have not attacked your Mega Church, nor have I attacked any members, all that I am saying that they are making a mistake. We have a zoning rule about this property and it should be honored.
Boiling October 26, 2012 at 09:05 PM
Again you are being rude and disrespectful. You are planning a Mega church for this site, not an entertainment venue, don’t change the subject. The question is if this Mega Church should be allowed to change the zoning and negatively impact the surrounding community. The community has a set plan for development and this Mega Church is not a good fit for many of the reasons already stated. "Hell is a place or state of eternal punishment inhabited by those rejected by God”, my handle refers to my disdain for the handling of governmental matters, not religion.
Nancy Kelsey (Editor) November 01, 2012 at 06:30 PM
Here's an update we did this week to the story: http://northville.patch.com/articles/northville-township-commission-approves-land-use-for-beck-road-mega-church The special land use has been approved with conditions for Triumph Church.
Northville Resident November 01, 2012 at 08:15 PM
Brian listed facts from the Census. If you find those facts offensive, then perhaps Northville is not a good spot for this church since the facts are not going to change. I suppose you're the same person who thinks everything is offensive, and yes, it does disturb our perfect little world.
Northville Resident November 01, 2012 at 08:17 PM
I would take the trailer park.
Northville Resident November 01, 2012 at 08:19 PM
Amen to this comment. Beck is going to be a complete mess.
Northville Resident November 01, 2012 at 08:25 PM
1) I'm not religious 2) People in Northville are not in a downward spiral. They are living in expensive houses and paying taxes 3) I pay taxes to the community 4) People living in Northville are paying a premium to live there to avoid the down spiral, violence, and murder
Northville Resident November 01, 2012 at 08:27 PM
Evita: It is "racists" not "racist". Also, no need to capitalize it. You're welcome.
Northville Resident November 01, 2012 at 08:34 PM


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