Arbor Update

Ann Arbor Area Community News

Google, Google, Everywhere

30. November 2006 • Juliew
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The Ann Arbor News says “sources say” Google to move to McKinley Towne Centre:

Google is on the brink of announcing that it will move into the McKinley Towne Centre in downtown Ann Arbor as it continues to expand its local operations, sources say. Sources told The News that the refurbished Towne Centre, the former TCF Bank building at the corner of Washington and Division Streets, will be Google’s second home after it outgrows its current space on South Main Street. Sources also say there may be a third and final destination for the company, which announced this summer it was locating its AdWords division in the Ann Arbor area. Grady Burnett, head of online sales and operations for Google’s Ann Arbor office, said this morning that he could not confirm the company’s location plans. He said Google’s search for a location has been exhaustive and that the company would like to make an announcement as soon as possible, but it’s not at that point yet.

Not enough Google for you? Read about Google and net neutrality in Michigan.

How about an update on Mbooks and Google Book Search? Attend the lecture Thursday afternoon which will discuss MBooks and Google Book Search, led by Ben Bunnell, Library Partnerships Manager for Google Book Search, and Perry Willett, Librarian, University of Michigan Digital Library Production Services. Thursday, November 30 2:00pm West Hall Room 411, 1085 South University.

But wait, there is more! Don’t miss Grady Burnett (and Ben Bunnell) Thursday night at the Ann Arbor District Library with the talk: Google Comes to Ann Arbor: Grady Burnett Discusses The Company’s Plan For Growth. Thursday November 30, 2006: 7:00pm to 8:30pm Downtown Library Multi-Purpose Room.

  1. What a surprise, Google has officially announced that they will be moving into over 80,000 square feet of space in McKinley Towne Centre in March.

       —Juliew    Dec. 9 '06 - 12:51AM    #
  2. According to an article in today’s AA News, the City has promised Google 200 free parking spaces – and did not consult with the DDA in advance!

    Susan Pollay says they will work things out. A big DDA concern is that there is a waiting list for existing parking spots, and the DDA wants to treat everyone fairly.

    Now here is an extremely interesting problem for allocating scarce public parking resources.

    Will the DDA agree? If not, will Council override the DDA? Or will Council finally dissolve the DDA because of this issue and the similar issue of the DDA refusing to fund parking for an expanded City Hall on-site?

       —David Cahill    Dec. 9 '06 - 06:42PM    #
  3. Stay tuned for the thrilling conclusion….....

       —Dale    Dec. 9 '06 - 08:06PM    #
  4. A further bulletin: According to today’s AA News, the DDA has caved on parking on the Larcom property. This story is definitely a moving target.

       —David Cahill    Dec. 11 '06 - 01:28AM    #
  5. Wow David … is that how you read the article? Because the resolution I voted for said that the DDA supported the city’s efforts to find a solution to the court/police issues. That was about the extent of the resolution. To my knowledge, the city itself hasn’t even made a decision about the Larcom site …

       —Jennifer Hall    Dec. 11 '06 - 02:28AM    #
  6. Jennifer is right – that is the resolution I voted for. No decision has been made, and no amount has been officially asked for. So stop speculating, David – you don’t know anything.

       —Leah Gunn    Dec. 11 '06 - 04:33AM    #
  7. Heh – all I know is what I read in the AA News. 8-)

    What Tom Gantert’s article alleged was a change in the DDA’s position was the lead local story. So the AA News thought it was news.

       —David Cahill    Dec. 11 '06 - 06:44PM    #
  8. Honestly, David, if you rely on the AA News for your facts, you need to reorganize your thinking. When has that rag ever been accurate?

       —Leah Gunn    Dec. 12 '06 - 12:08AM    #
  9. Leah, it’s not that he relies on others for facts, it’s that he creates his own “facts” and then assigns responsibility for them to others. Much like our ‘‘President’‘, he appears to be (pathologically?) not responsible for his own words and likewise takes pride in demonstrating his ‘skill’ in public fora.

    (And yet/so I continue to learn from him. You are indeed my teacher, David.)

       —Steve Bean    Dec. 12 '06 - 01:08AM    #
  10. Very well put, Steve.

       —Parking Structure Dude!    Dec. 12 '06 - 01:22AM    #
  11. It’s good to know I have a fan club. 8-)

    Now, as to what the DDA has done. On November 1, the DDA had before it a resolution to support the Task Force report’s recommendation that a police/court facility be built on the Library Lot.

    A proposed amendment was offered to say that the DDA would generally support the police/court facility, but without naming a location. That amendment failed, even though it was supported by Mayor Hieftje.

    The original, Library-Lot-Only, resolution was then adopted.

    On December 6, the DDA met. There are a bunch of resolutions posted on the DDA’s web site along with the agenda for that meeting. There is no resolution posted that deals with the court/police facility.

    But according to the AA News, at that meeting the DDA voted to support whatever downtown site the City picks.

    So it appears that on December 6 the DDA approved a resolution similar to the amendment that failed on November 1.

    That looks like a change of position to me. Mind you, changing one’s position is better than being dissolved.

       —David Cahill    Dec. 12 '06 - 01:28AM    #
  12. David – the resolution in November supported the City’s Task Force Report on Public Safety and Justice. It was a CITY task force, not a DDA Task Force, and that report did indeed, after much research, support building the police/courts building on the Fifth/Division parking lot, with underground parking below. In December, a resolution was introduced from the floor, indicating that the DDA would support any site that “meets our mutual goals for community government in the downtown”. These are not mutually exclusive, and the DDA is waiting to hear from the city council as to what they want. They have not yet decided. Are you clear, now? There has been no move to “dissolve the DDA”, in spite of your dreams that it might happen. That would be very stupid, as 40% of the TIF collected comes from entities other than the city, mainly the County. It wouldn’t be fiscally prudent for the city to give that up now, would it? And kindly recall that the DDA has been giving the city $2 million a year from its parking fund for the last two years, with three more to go. The city and the DDA function quite well together in spite of your “made up facts”, as referenced in Steve Bean’s post #9.

       —Leah Gunn    Dec. 12 '06 - 05:05AM    #
  13. Lee, I notice that you did not deny my narrative of what happened at the November 1 meeting, including the failed amendment, which bears a suspicious resemblance to what the DDA passed on December 6.

    It’s no disgrace for the DDA to accommodate itself to what Council wants. Anything is better than being pitched into a vat of hydrochloric acid. 8-)

    Of course no final decision has yet been made.

    As to your claim that the City and the DDA function well together – you really don’t want to get into a blow-by-blow discussion of the failed three-site parking structure plan.

       —David Cahill    Dec. 12 '06 - 07:32PM    #
  14. Ancient history – get over it.

       —Leah Gunn    Dec. 13 '06 - 03:34AM    #
  15. Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

    The government always bears watching – closely.

       —David Cahill    Dec. 13 '06 - 04:02AM    #
  16. Especially the Library Board.

       —Leah Gunn    Dec. 13 '06 - 07:46AM    #
  17. Especially the County Commissioners and the DDA.

       —David Cahill    Dec. 13 '06 - 09:48PM    #
  18. For his encore Cahill is going to perform a stirring rendition of “I Know You Are, But What am I?”

       —Parking Structure Dude!    Dec. 14 '06 - 02:54AM    #
  19. How much longer until the next election for Library Board, when the good people of Ann Arbor can vote a certain twit out on his ear?

       —Jeff Dean    Dec. 14 '06 - 04:33AM    #
  20. The next Library Board election is in 2008.

       —Edward Vielmetti    Dec. 14 '06 - 06:22AM    #
  21. PSD, I believe the IKYABWAI argument is unnecessary in this case as precedent suggests that David Cahill is rubber and Leah is glue. Of course either party can petition for an appeal to a rock-paper-scissors decision. Hopefully this disagreement can be resolved before it escalates to thumb wars.

       —Scott TenBrink    Dec. 14 '06 - 08:13AM    #
  22. Ohhhhh Scott – thumb wars? (I like your sense of humor.)

       —Leah Gunn    Dec. 14 '06 - 04:47PM    #
  23. I’d challenge Lee to a battle of wits, but she’s only half-armed. 8-)

       —David Cahill    Dec. 14 '06 - 11:10PM    #
  24. I think Dave makes the perfect library board member – he even seems to have taken up Melvil Dewey’s crusade to simplify American spelling, starting with Leah’s name!

    (I wonder what Dave’s anti-development pal Dug Coward thinks of this little respelling game?)

       —TPM    Dec. 15 '06 - 12:51AM    #
  25. Leah has been known as Lee for decades.

       —David Cahill    Dec. 15 '06 - 02:55AM    #
  26. ca’l, yr wit is so vast?

    sorry, pal, short by half.

       —peter honeyman    Dec. 15 '06 - 07:42AM    #
  27. Oh, no! According to today’s AA News, Google is buying the Tally Hall building under the city’s Liberty Square parking structure.

    Tally Hall is cursed. If Google goes through with this purchase, Tally Hall could bring all of Google down.

    The only way to escape the curse is to perform an exorcism.

       —David Cahill    Jan. 6 '07 - 09:20PM    #
  28. The doubling of the number of promised parking spaces to Google from 200 to 400 is pretty interesting:

    “On Friday, City Administrator Roger Fraser said the four-year lease Google has at the McKinley Towne Centre includes an additional three-year option, and that the city has an obligation to provide up to 400 free parking spots to the giant Internet company over seven years.

    Google and McKinley officials declined to comment.

    Previously, city officials said they promised at least 200 parking spots.

    However, just where those parking spots will be – the city already has a waiting list of several hundred people who want parking permits in downtown structures – has still not been determined.

    The City Council is expected to pass a resolution at its Monday meeting asking city staff and the Downtown Development Authority staff to come together and find a solution.”

       —HD    Jan. 6 '07 - 11:28PM    #
  29. Google isn’t buying anything. McKinley is buying Tally Hall.

       —Parking Structure Dude!    Jan. 7 '07 - 01:44AM    #
  30. That’s a quibble. The purchase is plainly for Google.

       —David Cahill    Jan. 7 '07 - 05:35AM    #