Only approval of a brownfield tax credit from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation stands in the way of the start of a 10,430 square foot expansion project at the historic Zingerman’s Delicatessen in Ann Arbor. Last week the Ann Arbor Historic District Commission approved the proposed $6.7 million project.
A couple of years ago, the city appeared willing to fight this project to its death. Now apparently the owners plans work and the project appears to be on track.
We’ve heard lately that the city of Ann Arbor is becoming more developer friendly. Perhaps the expansion of one of the city’s flagship businesses is proof of that.
As planners and civil engineers, we are fascinated with the planning process that is slowly evolving in the City of Detroit.
Most readers know the hard facts – the industrial economy has changed forever. The city neighborhoods that used to be the heart of blue-collar America are crumbling under foreclosure and neglect, unemployment and hopelessness.
Mayor Bing and his staff have put together a plan to improve the neighborhoods but at the same time, it seems, shrink these neighborhoods. A smaller city means a more efficient city. Better schools and public services will come to those in a smaller, more densely populated City of Detroit.
The plan is called The Detroit Works Project (more here). We hope the plan works to improve public services, provide safer neighborhoods and, above all, give the residents of the city a tangible reason to hope for a better tomorrow.
Edmonston, Maryland has a new green mainstreet
“Green Streets for All”
Edmonston, Maryland has redesigned their main street from a very wide, straight-as-a-stick bituminous roadway to a “complete street” that solves much of the local flooding problems with bio-retention. This system captures and treats the runoff from 90% of the storm events.
At the same time, the redesign provides pedestrian access, bike lanes, bump outs and road alignment offsets. Taking it one step further, they added wind powered LED street lighting and large shade trees. To add icing to the cake, the website will allow downloading of free open-source design plans including cad files and plug-in, thus the title “Green Streets for All.”
Read more here.
Earl Ophoff is a registered landscape architect in Midwestern Consulting’s Ann Arbor, Michigan office. You can reach Earl and talk to him about non-motorized pathways and green designs at 734.995.0200.