Arbor Update

Ann Arbor Area Community News

415 W. Washington Proposal Interviews, August 13

Posted by Juliew on 12. August 2008

415 West Washington from Flickr user Voxphoto under a Creative Commons license

From the City’s web site:

An advisory committee appointed by the Ann Arbor City Council will interview three development teams about their proposals for the city-owned site at 415 W. Washington. The interviews, which are open for the public to attend and observe, will be held on Wednesday, August 13 from 5:00 – 9:30 pm in the Board Room of the County Administration Building, located at 220 N. Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor.

Three development teams submitted proposals. Each development team will make a 30-minute presentation outlining their proposal. Following the presentation, the advisory committee will pose questions to the team about specific aspects of their proposal. The interview schedule is: 5:00 pm – Ann Arbor Art Center; 6:30 pm – Morningside Equities Group; 8:00 pm – Old Westside Square Development Group.
After the interviews, the advisory committee will evaluate the proposals and make a recommendation to City Council in early fall about how to proceed with the redevelopment of the site.

Full information and link is here.

Comment [2]

City Council: President's Day Golfing Special

Posted by Juliew on 19. February 2008

Tuesday, February 19 (one day later due to President’s Day holiday) at 7:00 pm.
Ann Arbor City HallCity Council Agenda

Highlights:

  • Rezoning of portions of Lower Burns Park neighborhood from R4C (Multiple-Family Dwelling District) to R1D.

  • Reconsideration of approval of liquor license for golf course .
  • Resolution to approve Golf Course Deficit Elimination Plan as of June 30, 2007 (response to letter from the State) (added after newspaper deadline).
  • Resolution to reduce fees at the city’s golf courses effective for the 2008 golf season and increase the senior citizen qualification age (added after newspaper deadline).
  • Resolution to approve review of Central Area Plan.
  • Request for proposals for 415 W. Washington Street.

Comment [60]

City Council: Greenbelt Expansion

Posted by Juliew on 20. August 2007

Monday, August 20 at 7:00 pm.
Ann Arbor City HallCity Council Agenda

Highlights:

  • Greenbelt expansion resolution
  • Approval of A2D2 Zoning recommendations
  • Resolution to Order Election and to Determine Ballot Question for Charter Amendment on the Sale of City-Owned Land Acquired for or Used as Parkland
  • Resolution to Annually Update Formula Calculation Contribution Affordable Housing for PUDs
  • Resolution to temporarily allow public parking at 415 West Washington
  • Resolution to approve CTN’s move to Eisenhower Corporate Park

Comment [17]

Council votes down Easthope/Johnson resolution

Posted by Murph on 22. March 2005

At tonight’s City Council meeting, the resolution by Easthope and Johnson to set aside three city-owned sites in their entirety as greenway parks was voted down, with Johnson and Easthope voting in favor and all other Council members and Mayor Hieftje voting against in front of an overflow audience.

The resolution’s advocates in the crowd exercised such tactics as calling for “everyone who supports a greenway to stand,” booing a student who spoke against the resolution, and clapping after Easthope’s opening comment on the resolution until Mayor Hieftje made them stop, and said that clapping was not appropriate during the meeting. This was followed by most of the Council members who voted against the resolution to emphasize that they were not voting against a greenway, but against the particular timing of this particular proposal.

More comment later; a number of other bloggers were in attendance, as well as Ann Arbor News and Michigan Daily reporters.

EDIT, 22 March, 10:30am:For anyone interested in watching the meeting on CTN, rebroadcasts are scheduled on Channel 16 at,

> Tuesday, 22 March, 1:30pm.
> Friday, 25 March, 7:00pm.

Public comment is at the very beginning of the meeting./EDIT

Discussion of the resolution began at 0:45-1:00 into the meeting, and ended around 1:30-1:45 into the meeting. (The meeting started 15 minutes late and there was a 15 minute closed session with the City Attorney, and I don’t know how these delays are factored into the rebroadcast, so these times are fairly imprecise.)

EDIT, 22 March, 12:45pm: The Ann Arbor News’ article on the Council’s decision, Council declines to save lot for greenway, estimates the crowd at around 180 people, and includes several quotes predicting next steps:

Margaret Wong, the co-chairwoman of Friends of the Ann Arbor Greenway, told the council after its vote that the public won’t get a real greenway unless they speak up.

“Public interest is growing fast,” Wong said. “The debate has really just begun.”

Sierra Club-Huron Valley Group Co-Chairman Doug Cowherd, who attended the meeting, said he will now rally his supporters to go to the streets to get a petition signed in favor of a full-fledged greenway.

Cowherd said the Friends of the Ann Arbor Greenway already has a petition with 600 signatures. He said the group is adding 30 supporters a day. Cowherd said he hopes to be back in front of the council in April with 2,000 signatures.

“If we continue to add support at that rate, it would be hard even for this anti-greenway council to stop a greenway,” Cowherd said. “Public response will determine whether the council’s continued stall on the greenway will be fatal or whether public interest will be so strong, they’ll be forced for the first time to hold public hearings.”
. . .
Council Member Leigh Greden, D-3rd Ward, said the city could put an artists’ center on 415 W. Washington and some residential housing on 721 N. Main St. and still have plenty of green space, too.

“I’m confident we will create a real viable greenway in this town,” Greden said. “This is not a vote for parks or development.”
. . .
Council Member Margie Teall said there had to be a middle ground.

“The real issue to me is compromise and balance,” said Teall, D-4th Ward. “In some form, this (greenway) is going to happen.”


/EDIT

Comment [36]

Ongoing Greenway drama: Easthope announces intent to kill DDA plan

Posted by Murph on 9. March 2005

After last night’s forum at the library, City Councilmember Chris Easthope apparently told the Ann Arbor News that he plans a resolution for the 21 March Council meeting,

that would set aside the city-owned lot [at First and William] for a larger greenway vision being pushed by environmentalists and others for downtown.

Such a move, would “completely kill” the Downtown Development Authority’s proposed plan to redevelop the west side of downtown with a new parking structure and multiuse, high-rise buildings on three city-owned parking sites, DDA member Roger Hewitt said this morning.
. . .
Easthope said his resolution would also ask that city-owned park maintenance facility at 415 W. Washington St. and the fleet services building at 721 N. Main St. be set aside for the greenway. The city will vacate both facilities for a new building within the next few years. Those buildings are not part of the DDA’s redevelopment plan.

Despite the fact that much of the criticism of the DDA’s proposal at this week’s Council meeting included a view that the DDA was trying to move too quickly with their proposal and with not enough opportunity for public input, Easthope seems to believe that fast, decisive action in the other direction is appropriate. Easthope represents the 5th Ward, which includes the Old West Side neighborhood where Greenway support is concentrated.

See also,
> ArborUpdate, 8 March, Greenway advocates slam DDA plans for downtown parking

Comment [16]

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