UM, Ann Arbor Agree: Rail Costs Not Owed

The city of Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan have agreed that $271,446 of costs associated with earlier studies of the Fuller Road transit station project are not owed by the university to the city. The costs had been billed by the city staff to the university under a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the two parties, which outlined an intent for the university to construct a 1,000 car parking garage at the Fuller Road site – across the railroad tracks from the university medical center.

The city had also planned to build a train station at the site. The university withdrew from the partnership earlier this year, on Feb. 10, 2012. The city of Ann Arbor has continued with its planning for the rail station portion of the project, accepting a $2.8 million grant from the Federal Rail Administration on June 4, 2012 for a site alternatives analysis. That $2.8 million grant had a $0.7 million local match requirement, which the city intends to meet with funds already expended by the university and the city. The amount billed by the city to the university was part of that local match component of the FRA grant.

In the agreement reached between the city and the university, UM does not owe the $271,446 – because the university has already met its 78% share of expenses as specified in the MOU. That means the city will use part of the $307,781 that had already been included in the FY 2013 budget to cover those costs, in the event it was determined that UM did not owe the money.