PAC: Integrate Trails into Fuller Road Station

At its Aug. 16, 2011 meeting, the Ann Arbor park advisory commission unanimously passed a resolution recommending that planning for a trail system – including the county’s Border to Border (B2B) Trail – be incorporated into plans for the proposed Fuller Road Station. The resolution was drafted by commissioners Gwen Nystuen and Tim Berla, and will be forwarded to the city council.

Among other things, the resolution states that detailed plans for the design and funding of the trail system, including the B2B Trail through Fuller Park and the connecting links on all sides, should be approved by PAC and city council prior to action on the Fuller Road Station project. The resolution calls for trail improvements to be completed prior to or concurrently with changes planned along Fuller Road or construction of the Fuller Road Station, and recommends that any future transit improvements – including the “Signature Route” of the future University of Michigan rapid transit connector along Fuller Road – should preserve the integrity of the trail system.

Further, the resolution states that improvement of the trail system should be given priority over planned bicycle amenities within Fuller Road Station, and that costs of a complete non-motorized trail system and a source of funding should be established jointly by the city of Ann Arbor, the University of Michigan, and the Washtenaw County Parks & Recreation Commission.

Fuller Road Station is a large parking structure, bus depot and possible rail station proposed near the intersection of Fuller Road and Maiden Lane, near the UM medical campus on city-owned land. The land has been used as a surface parking lot since 1993, leased to the university, but is on property designated as parkland. It’s a joint project of the city of Ann Arbor and UM, but a formal agreement regarding its construction and operation hasn’t yet been finalized.

The project has been a topic of concern for PAC commissioners for nearly two years. In June 2010, the commission passed a resolution that asked the city council to make available a complete plan of Fuller Road Station – including any significant proposed agreements, such as what the university will pay the city for use of the structure – allowing sufficient time for a presentation at a televised PAC meeting before the council votes on the project. The resolution also asked that staff and the council ensure the project results in a net revenue gain for the parks system. PAC most recently got a detailed update on the project at its May 2011 meeting.

This report was filed soon after the PAC meeting at the second-floor council chambers of city hall, 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]