A draft of Ann Arbor’s South State Street corridor plan has been authorized by the city council for distribution to neighboring jurisdictions and other stakeholders, such as the University of Michigan, the Ann Arbor Public Schools, and the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority. The vote took place at the city council’s Feb. 4, 2013 meeting. The planning commission had voted to recommend the corridor plan’s distribution at its Jan. 3, 2013 meeting [.pdf of draft South State corridor plan]
The plan includes more than 40 overall recommendations for the corridor, which stretches about 2 miles between Stimson Street at the north end down to Ellsworth in the south. Recommendations are organized into categories of the city’s sustainability framework: Land use and access, community, climate and energy, and resource management.
Among the recommendations are: (1) Evaluate use of vacant parcels for alternative energy generation; (2) Evaluate integration of public art along the corridor; (3) Evaluate use of open land for community gardens; (4) Assess and improve high crash areas along the corridor; (5) create boulevard on State Street between Eisenhower and I‐94 to enable safer automobile, bicycle, and pedestrian movement; (6) consider utilizing vacant parcels for athletic fields and recreation facilities; (7) develop a pedestrian and bicycle path along the Ann Arbor railroad that will connect the planned Allen Creek bikeway to Pittsfield Township through the corridor; and (8) resurface roads in the corridor.
Each recommendation includes several related action items. The plan also provides a section that organizes the recommendations into each of three distinct sections of the corridor: (1) from Stimson on the north to Eisenhower Parkway; (2) from Eisenhower south to the I-94 interchange; and (3) from I-94 to Ellsworth. In addition, there are nine site-specific recommendations for areas including Briarwood Mall, the complex of hotels near Victors Way and Broadway, and the research park development near the corridor’s south end.
The city planning commission and staff have been discussing this project for several years, but have accelerated work on it within the past 12-18 months. See Chronicle coverage: “South State Corridor Gets Closer Look,” “Sustainability Goals Shape Corridor Study,” and “Ideas Floated for South State Corridor.”
This brief was filed from the city council’s chambers on the second floor of city hall, located at 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]