Editor’s note: This “Live Updates” coverage of the Ann Arbor city council’s Aug. 18, 2014 meeting includes all the material from an earlier preview article published last week. The intent is to facilitate easier navigation from the live updates section to background material already in this file.
Land use and development is set up to be a dominant theme of tonight’s meeting, as it frequently is for many of the council’s meetings. An additional highlight will be initial consideration of a change to the city’s taxicab ordinance – in response to the entry of services like Uber and Lyft into the Ann Arbor market.
A report from the city administrator on options for deer management has led to a resolution on the Aug. 18 agenda appropriating $20,000 for the development of a deer management program.
Among the land use items on the Aug. 18 agenda is one related to use of city-owned land – three parking lots at Fuller Park: (1) the parking lot south of Fuller Road, next to the railroad tracks; (2) the paved parking lot north of Fuller Road at Fuller Park; and (3) the unpaved parking lot north of Fuller Road at Fuller Park. The lots are used by the University of Michigan during restricted hours.
The council will be considering a two-year lease with one additional two-year option for renewal. Annual revenue from this lease will be $78,665, and will be included as part of the parks and recreation general fund budget. The item was forwarded to the city council from the park advisory commission with a recommendation of approval.
Private land development items on the Aug. 18 agenda include final approval of the rezoning of land for the State Street Village project at 2221-2223 S. State St. The 4.5-acre parcel is proposed to be rezoned from M1 (limited industrial district) to O (office district). Also on the council’s agenda is the site plan for the project that will be made possible by approval of the rezoning – a $10 million development by Ann Arbor-based McKinley Inc. The plan calls for constructing two 4-story apartment buildings at the rear of the site, totaling 112,262 square feet, with 38 units each. Another 2,027-square-foot building – for a leasing office with two apartments above it – would be built on the front of the parcel, on South State.
Also on the agenda for final approval is the rezoning required for an Ann Arbor Housing Commission project – a 4.8-acre site at 701 N. Maple Road. The zoning would change from R1C (single-family dwelling district) to R4B (multi-family dwelling district). The site plan, which is also on the council’s Aug. 18 agenda, calls for demolishing 20 existing single-family homes – the public housing complex known as North Maple Estates – and constructing an eight-building, 42-unit apartment complex with a total of 138 bedrooms. A related item on the agenda is the vacation of a portion of the city’s right-of-way for Seybold Drive.
Rezoning for 121 W. Kingsley Street for a private development is getting initial consideration by the council on Aug. 18. The project calls for rezoning the site from a planned unit development (PUD) to D2 (downtown interface). The development would include renovating the existing two-story, 2,539-square-foot building, plus constructing two additional buildings: (1) a 3.5-story addition to the existing building; and (2) a 4.5-story structure at the southeast corner of West Kingsley and North Ashley. In total, the development would include 22 units and 40,689 square feet. The estimated cost is $6.5 million.
Getting initial consideration by the council at its Aug. 18 meeting are changes to the city’s taxicab ordinance that have been recommended by the city’s taxicab board. The recommendations come in the context of the entry of Uber and Lyft into the Ann Arbor market. The companies offer the arrangement of rides through mobile networks with drivers who operate their own vehicles. Both companies have ignored cease-and-desist orders from the city.
Uber has sent its Ann Arbor customers an email asking them to sign an online petition supporting Uber’s continued ability to operate here.
One ordinance change would establish certain parameters to mitigate possible negative consequences to the setting of a very high maximum allowable taxicab rate, under which taxicab companies might eventually compete. Those parameters include a requirement that a taxicab company commit to a single rate annually and that the rate be advertised in a vehicle with signage in letters one-inch tall. The other ordinance would require that all drivers for hire – whether they are taxicab drivers or drivers who work for Uber or Lyft – register with the city, maintain proper insurance for their vehicles and acquire commercial plates.
The Aug. 18 agenda also includes an item to confirm the re-appointment of Bob Guenzel to the board of the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority.
This article includes a more detailed preview of many of these agenda items. More details on other agenda items are available on the city’s online Legistar system. The meeting proceedings can be followed Monday evening live on Channel 16, streamed online by Community Television Network starting at 7 p.m.
The Chronicle will be filing live updates from city council chambers during the meeting, published in this article below the preview material. Click here to skip the preview section and go directly to the live updates. The meeting is scheduled to start at 7 p.m.