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wolverine

Projects around Ann Arbor, MI

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wolverine    0

Ann Arbor is home to the University of Michigan. Numerous new buildings have begun construction or are nearing completion around the city. Below, I have posted webcam images. They are live, so if you check this at night, you may not see anything.

Biomedical Sciences building, West tower along I-94 BR. Camera facing from Power Center

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Biomedical Sciences building, East Tower along Zina Pitcher. Camera facing from Couzens Hall (my residence hall :) )

hugesize.jpg

Cardiovascular Center

[Webcam Down]

Palmer Drive Development (nearing completion)

palmer.jpg

School of Public Health

Webcam Map This one requires a link because the images are in .cgi format.

New Biomedical Engineering Labs

BioMed Lab

Here are design photos of what these structures will look like

BioMed Labs

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Biomedical Sciences Building

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Both are a bit modern for my tastes, but they are located within a sector of the city where the hospital and other research institutions are. Therefore, no ordinances are in place requiring similar styles to nearby historic structures.

Cardiovascular Center

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Built on the former site of a surface parking lot, this building will improve the view along East Ann St, and feature a massive underground parking structure. Yay Underground Parking!

Computer Sceince Building On North Campus

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School of Public Health

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An old 4 story addition to the main building was demolished as well as the skybridge to make way for the new elevated structure and grand entranceway by the road. I'm looking forward to seeing the progress on this building.

Joan and Sanford Weill Hall-Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy

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Going up in the heart of the city, this building will blend well with the older surrounding buildings on Central Campus. This by far one of my favorites going up in the area.

For more information on these projects, visit the University of Michigan's Plant Extension Website.

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Allan    0

Nice. I need to get down to AA one of these days. It is one of my favorite cities, and quite possibly the best college town in the US.

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wolverine    0

And Arbor is booming, which is great, but the problem is space. While Detroit is gaining surface lot space, Ann Arbor is losing it. Nearly every conceivable flat space in the city has been filled. Ann Arbor is trying to maintain sort of a small town atmosphere (which is nothing like that) but now businesses and developers moving in are beginning to build towards the sky. Ann Arbor also has a sort of a smart growth act in place to prevent sprawl. But with a growing population, it has become difficult to fit everyone in a small space. If the city wants to prevent suburban growth, it's time that they either extend the city limits or build more high density housing.

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Allan    0

The problem is that expanding the city limits is virtually impossible in Michigan. While other states can annex adjoining land into their cities, Michigan cities cannot. The law has been written to prevent any sort of annexations from occuring. It is still possible, but the residents of Ann Arbor and the communities to be annexed would have to vote on the issue and pass it.

Check out this article that was printed a few months ago: http://www.urbanplanet.org/forums/index.php?showtopic=3840

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wolverine    0

Very interesting article. I was in Ann Arbor a few weeks ago to visit friends and I took some more photos for this site that will be presented in upcoming weeks. I went down around Ashley street which the article cited as an area for 9-20 story buildings. People mentioned it would take away from the small town charm. Well I've been to Ann Arbor dozens of times each year since I was born, and now being a student there, I really don't see how this would negatively impact the surroundings. First of all, the area they are referring to is Ann Arbors only vast expanse of surface parking lots. I suppose if the towers featured 5 levels of underground parking, the removal of these lots would not be a problem. If you ever drive along Ashley street, the back of the downtown (sometimes called Financial district) looks strange. Basically it's a wall of the backs of 4-13 story buildings with a large parking lot behind them. After the parking lots, are set of elevated railroad tracks. I really think that area could be developed on. This could spread the downtown in the Western direction. Would it hurt businesses in Midtown and South U? Absolutely not! The primary customers of the businesses in that location are the students and their parents. The downtown area where they propose development is fueled by stadium crowds, tourists, and the few students that make it in that direction. During two semesters at U of M, I may make it to Main St. three times. That is because it's a bit of distance to walk. And why go that direction when there are plenty of businesses in Midtown to eat or shop at? I think the developers know what they are doing. As long as they don't crowd 20 Plaza Towers as the person mentioned into a small space, the city will look alright. But as far as new development heading in the upward direction, I'm all for it. Plus it will help the Western neighborhoods, which frankly need a bit of a facelift. On the plus side of the whole thing, I doubt they will have to tear down a bunch of historical buildings. Much of what I believe they are interested in, is those ugly parking lots (which really don't help), and some of the hollowed out industrial spaces.

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