Parking Expansion OK’d for Glacier Hills

A site plan to add 31 parking spaces at the Glacier Hills retirement community got unanimous approval from Ann Arbor planning commissioners at their July 16, 2013 meeting.

The spots will be added on the west side of an existing driveway in the north part of the property, which is located at 1200 Earhart Road. There are currently 486 parking spaces throughout the 31.5-acre site. The property is zoned R4B (multi-family dwelling) and includes 227 apartments and two-family residences, 155 nursing rooms, and 197 nursing care beds. The site, near US-23, is adjacent to Greenhills School and a residential neighborhood.

A representative from the nearby Earhart Village spoke against the project, saying that the parking is primarily for commercial uses, even though the area is residential. He argued that Glacier Hills is drawing customers to the property, who use the cafe there and other services. He said the property is overdeveloped and negatively impacts the adjoining neighborhoods. He also complained about changes to the site that can be approved via administrative amendments, with no oversight by the planning commission. One such change – an addition to one of the Glacier Hills “villas” – is currently pending with the planning staff.

The addition of the 31 parking spaces is not an item that requires city council approval.

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