Food Gatherers’ Expansion Approved

An expansion of the Food Gatherers’ facility in Ann Arbor moved ahead following action at the Ann Arbor planning commission’s Aug. 21, 2012 meeting. Commissioners unanimously recommended approval of changes to the nonprofit’s planned unit development (PUD), which will allow for a 12,646-square-foot addition to the back of the existing 16,977-square-foot building.

That building houses the nonprofit’s administrative offices, storage warehouse, and training space. The plan also will add 22 parking spaces to the site, and includes an expansion of produce-washing stations, used to clean vegetables grown at gardens on the site. The Carrot Way site is located on the north side of Ann Arbor off of Dhu Varren Road, east of Pontiac Trail.

According to a staff memo, the changes include a separate administrative land transfer request to shift a shared lot line between the site and a parcel of vacant land to the southeast – both owned by Food Gatherers. The lot line will be moved about 70 feet south, adding 0.43 acres to site where the Food Gatherers’ facility is located. The larger lot size is necessary so that the building addition will conform to the permitted floor-area ratio (FAR). FAR – a measure of density – is the ratio of the square footage of a building divided by the size of the lot. A one-story structure built lot-line-to-lot-line with no setbacks corresponds to a FAR of 100%. A similar structure built two-stories tall would result in a FAR of 200%.

The proposal will be forwarded to the Ann Arbor city council for approval.

This brief was filed from the second-floor city council chambers at city hall, 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]