Updated Capital Improvements Plan OK’d

At its Dec. 18, 2012 meeting, Ann Arbor planning commissioners approved the city’s proposed capital improvements plan (CIP), which will now be forwarded to the city council. No one attended a public hearing on the topic.

The plan covers the fiscal years 2014-2019, and includes a list of major capital projects, both those that are funded and those for which funding hasn’t yet been identified. [.pdf of CIP for FY 2014-2019] Required by state statute, the CIP must be developed and updated each year, looking ahead at a six-year period, to help with financial planning for major projects – permanent infrastructure like buildings, utilities, transportation and parks. It’s intended to reflect the city’s priorities and needs, and serves as a guide to discern what projects are on the horizon.

This year, there are 377 projects listed in 13 different asset categories. In the report, new projects are indicated with gray shading. They include renovating and/or remodeling five fire stations, 415 W. Washington site re-use, a park at 721 N. Main, urban park/plaza improvements, several street construction projects, a bike share program, and the design, study and construction of a new rail station.

Planning commissioners had been briefed on the CIP at a Dec. 11 working session by Cresson Slotten, systems planning unit manager, and Deborah Gosselin, systems planning engineer. Both Gosselin and Slotten attended the commission’s Dec. 18 meeting to answer additional questions.

This year, the report also includes results from an online survey of residents. More than 200 people responded, and their input is being used to help prioritize projects. [.pdf of survey responses (aggregate)] [.pdf of survey responses (open response)] To make the final CIP information more accessible, the city is also planning to launch a CIP mapping system that will indicate the locations of projects, and allow users to click on the location for details about the project. That’s expected to be posted later this month as part of the city’s GIS (geographic information system) site.

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