Ann Arbor planning commission meeting (March 19, 2013): Planning commissioners reviewed two projects at their most recent meeting: a commercial project near South State and Ellsworth; and a residential development off Traver Road near the Leslie Park golf course.
The commission discussed, but then postponed action on a proposed site plan for State Street Center, just north of Ellsworth near the new Tim Hortons. The project calls for a drive-thru restaurant and separate retail building, with an entrance off of South State.
The planning staff had recommended postponement after discovering that the city’s official zoning map had been incorrectly labeled. It showed the site as zoned C3 (fringe commercial), and the developer had made plans based on that erroneous labeling. But during background research for this proposal, planning staff discovered that the site actually had been zoned as O (office) in 2003. The postponement is intended to allow the developer to submit a rezoning request.
A project that had previously been postponed by commissioners – called Hideaway Lane – was discussed and ultimately recommended for approval on March 19. The proposal is a residential development of 19 single-family houses on a 4.6-acre site off Traver Road, near the city’s Leslie Park golf course and on the edge of Traver Creek. Much of the discussion focused on issues related to the project’s impact on natural features, and how the developer plans to mitigate that impact.
The commission also authorized the reimbursement of expenses for Kirk Westphal – the commission’s chair – to attend the American Planning Association’s National Planning Conference in Chicago from April 13-17. He’ll appear on a panel with city staff to talk about Ann Arbor’s recently adopted sustainability framework. Westphal, a Democrat, recently announced his intent to run for Ann Arbor city council in Ward 2, for the seat currently held by Jane Lumm.