The second phase of the Ann Arbor Planning Commission's evaluation of the downtown zoning amendments begins this week. Focus groups, public events, community coffees and on-line activity is scheduled through September to engage residents, businesses, employees and downtown property owners in evaluating options for changes to the downtown zoning.
Input is being solicited on options for how floor area premiums for new construction should be applied, in addition to possible zoning changes to three areas adjacent to residential zones:
1. The north side of Huron between Division and State Street
2. The parking lot on Ann Street adjacent to City Hall, and
3. The south side of William Street between Main and Fourth Streets
Upcoming feedback opportunities include:
"Community Coffees" with consultants to hear community views on Thursday, September 5 and Thursday, September 19 from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at Espresso Royale Coffee at 324 S. State Street.
Public focus group meetings the week of September 9th:
• Monday, September 9, Noon – 1:00 p.m., Brown Bag lunch in the Board Room at the Chamber of Commerce (115 W. Huron St.)
• Monday, September 9, 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m., Traverwood Library Branch Multi-Purpose Room (3333 Traverwood Drive)
• Tuesday, September 10, 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m., Pizza House (618 Church Street)
• Wednesday, September 11, 5:00 p.m. -6:00 p.m., Bill's Beer Garden (218 S. Ashley St.)
• Thursday, September 12, 8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m., Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority offices (150 S. 5th Ave., #301)
Other opportunities for the community to get involved in the Downtown Zoning Evaluation Project include:
• A public workshop on Thursday, September 19, 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., Workantile Exchange (118 S. Main St.) to review options for changes to the downtown zoning.
• On-line surveys available on September 9, 2013 at www.a2gov.org/downtownzoning.
Updates will be posted at the project website, www.a2gov.org/downtownzoning, throughout the process. A link to sign up for e-mail updates may be found on the website.
The downtown zoning amendments were adopted in coordination with amendments to the City's Downtown Plan. In March and April 2013, City Council passed resolutions directing the Planning Commission to review the new downtown zoning changes and provide a report with recommendations for any necessary amendments. The Planning Commission's Ordinance Revisions Committee (ORC) is overseeing the evaluation process. ENP & Associates, a planning consulting firm based in Ann Arbor, was hired to facilitate this process with assistance from Planning and Development Services. The Planning Commission will finalize a report on this process for the City Council in October.