Monday, October 3, 2022

Ann Arbor City Preview: October 3, 2022

Gentle Readers, are you ready for tonight's spooktacular #a2Council meeting? Here's the agenda

The evening kicks off with a modest, 11-item consent agenda. Of note, CA-10, a resolution to modify the development agreement and remove the parking requirement for the State Street Lofts project. This is great as it helps reduce the cost of the project and helps disincentivize driving. 

There is one public hearing tonight. PH-1/B-1 is on the second reading of the right to renew ordinance. This is an exciting ordinance that can help level the playing field between renters and landlords. I expect a lot of callers for this public hearing. 

C-1 is the first reading of the TC1 rezoning for the Maple - Stadium corridor. It's really exciting to see this rezoning come up. Transit corridor zoning allows more density and parking-lite developments in areas that are well served by transit. This is a really important way for Ann Arbor to meet its climate and housing goals. You would think passing this would be a no-brainer. But you can expect the same, tired old arguments against new development from the anti-housing contingent. This could be a real spicy chili. 

Further down the docket we have a bunch of resolutions tonight. DC-1 is a resolution to end right turn on red in the downtown and near downtown area. This is a great way to prevent a ton of crashes where pedestrians are injured. Ann Arbor's 2020 Comprehensive Transportation Plan found "half of all the traffic crashes where a person walking or biking was killed or seriously injured involved a driver failing to yield." Again, this should be a no-brainer, but when this came up at the last meeting, there were some dubious arguments against making our streets safer. 

DC-2 is a resolution to support the Mitchell School PTO getting a charitable gaming license for a fundraiser. 

DC-3 is a resolution to put a charter amendment to the voters that would make mayoral and council elections non-partisan. There's a lot of history with this. partisan elections would shift the most important election for #a2Council races from the August primary to the November general election. Some fear that non-partisan elections would give more power to conservative elements in the electorate.  Indeed many of the recent CMs that have advocated for non-partisan elections have been from council's conservative faction. This could be another spicy chili. 

DC-4 is a resolution to revise the rules around vegetation in rights of way. DC-5 is a resolution to approve the affordable housing agreement with The Standard, a development at 405 S. Main. DC-6 is a resolution to end Ann Arbor's local state of emergency for COVID-19. And Finally, DC-7 is a resolution to support improved safety barriers at parking decks. 

And that's all there is. Looks like a pretty stacked agenda. What items are you most looking forward to seeing? Hopefully we will see you there. The CTN stream starts at 7 pm. Make sure you follow the action on the #a2Council hashtag.

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