On 2nd Try, Hampton Inn Gets Planning OK

A new Hampton Inn at 2910 Jackson Ave., across the street from Weber’s Inn, received a unanimous recommendation of approval from the Ann Arbor planning commission at its July 2, 2013 meeting. Commissioners had postponed action on the proposal at their June 18, 2013 meeting, asking the developer to address concerns over pedestrian access within the site.

A June 28 letter from Andy Wakeland, the project’s civil engineer, outlined several changes that the design team made in response to commissioners’ concerns. [.pdf of Wakeland’s letter] The changes include building a wood chip path with a picnic table area along the front wooded area of the site, connecting to two previously proposed entrances from Jackson Avenue. The plan now also includes an alternate pedestrian route at the west entrance, crossing the front parking lot in a more direct route to the hotel’s front door. Several commissioners praised the changes and thanked the developer for being responsive.

The proposed four-story hotel, located on an 8.8-acre site north of Jackson and south of I-94, would include 100 bedrooms and 51,608 usable square feet. A 163-room Clarion Hotel is on the same site, east of the proposed new hotel.

A previous site plan for that location had been approved in 2008, and a Super 8 motel there was demolished. The foundation was laid for a new Hampton Inn, but the project was never completed and the building permits and site plan expired.

Commissioners recommended approval of the “planned project” site plan, amended development agreement and modifications to the city’s landscaping requirements. The project will next be considered by the city council for approval.

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