DDA to Put Roof on Public Housing Complex

The roof of Baker Commons, which offers 64 of the roughly 360 public housing units managed by the Ann Arbor Housing Commission, will be replaced using funds provided by the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority. The authorization of $260,000 was given at the DDA’s Oct. 3, 2012 board meeting.

Jennifer L. Hall, the commission’s executive director, had addressed the board at its Sept. 5, 2012 meeting and also spoke to board members on Oct. 3.

Baker Commons, on the corner of Packard and Main streets, is the only AAHC  property within the Ann Arbor DDA district. The roof has had ongoing leaking problems, according to Hall’s presentation at the Sept. 5 meeting, and the housing commission has undertaken periodic patches. However, in the last year or so it is gotten much worse, Hall reported. There has been leakage into housing units and damage to the roof trusses, she explained. [.jpg of Baker Commons roof]

The housing commission is planning to put a steel roof on Baker Commons, even though the upfront cost is about three times more than an asphalt roof. A steel roof will be more durable. Some of the benefits for the steel roof include: no off-gas; resistance to wind, fire, mildew, insects and rot; extended life for air-conditioning units; decrease in attic temperatures; and decreased energy use overall. It also decreases the heat-island effect, according to Hall. She also pointed out that the product chosen by the housing commission is made in Michigan.

Hall noted that the roof of the building has an extremely steep pitch, so it is a very expensive project to replace the roof no matter what kind of roof is put on – because it’s a high-rise building with such a steep pitch. The commission would like to replace it once, and then have it last for a very, very long time, she said.

This brief was filed from the DDA offices at 150 S. Fifth Ave., Suite 301, where the DDA board holds its meetings. A more detailed report will follow: [link]