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A2 City News is emailed to newsletter subscribers by the City of Ann Arbor. Please share comments via email or call 734.794.6110, extension 41105. The current A2 City News resident newsletter articles appear below in plain-text format. The newsletter, in its entirety, can be viewed in a printable format, similar to the original e-newsletter, by clicking the PDF below.
A2 City News, May 2013, Volume 7, Number 5 (PDF)
(originally distributed May 1, 2013, via email to "Resident Newsletter: A2 City News" subscribers)
IN THIS ISSUE Vada Murray lacrosse games * Family open house * SEMCOG meeting * A2 Open City Hall * East Stadium bridges ceremony * River clean-up volunteers * Ann Arbor Marathon street closures * Sustainability report highlights * City pools to open * Canoeing for Kids * Listen in to CTN * Justice Center art installation * Farmers Market Wednesdays * Downtown Blooms Day * Adopt-a-Park * Rain barrel sale * Highway construction scheduled * Grads on CTN * Superheroes and princesses event * Good news * MI Big Green Gym * Dates to remember
Budget process continues
Are you interested in information about the City of Ann Arbor fiscal years 2014 and 2015 budget development process? Go online to watch the Feb. 11, Feb. 25, March 11, and March 25 City Council budget-related work sessions: http://a2govtv.pegcentral.com/.
In addition, the online Ann Arbor Citizen Guide to Finance and Budget is a resource to help citizens better understand the city’s efforts to maintain a balanced budget while also balancing service needs and expectations (www.a2gov.org/government/financeadminservices/budgetguide/Pages/default.aspx). The information on this site is organized by subtopic to make it easier to follow.
Fiscal year 2014 begins on July 1, 2013, and ends June 30, 2014. City Council members can only adopt one fiscal-year budget at a time, even though the city plans for multi-year budgets. In accordance with City Charter, the City Administrator's Recommended FY 2014 and 2015 Budget will be submitted to City Council on April 15, 2013. City Council, with at least seven affirmative votes, must adopt the budget no later than at its second meeting in May (May 20).
Vada Murray Men vs. Women Lacrosse Games
Come support the Vada Murray Fund for Cancer Research by attending a Men vs. Women Lacrosse Game on Friday, May 3 at Pioneer and Skyline high schools. The Pioneer game begins at 6 p.m. and the varsity game at Skyline High School begins at 7 p.m. in the schools’ stadiums. Tickets are $5 and benefit the Vada Murray Fund for Cancer Research.
Vada Murray, a former Michigan football player and a longtime Ann Arbor police officer, died April 6, 2011, at age 43 of lung cancer. Ann Arbor Police Chief John Seto and Vada Murray's wife, Sarah Murray, will be present to kick off each game. Players will exchange sticks at midfield before the game and play women's lacrosse rules. Go online for more information: www.vadamurray.com/.
Family Open House
Join the Ann Arbor Fire and Police departments for a free family open house 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 11. Fifth Avenue will be temporarily closed in front of Fire Station No. 1, 111 N. Fifth Ave., between Huron and Ann streets, to host the festivities.
The event will include tours of fire trucks and apparatus displays, police K–9 demos, Safety Town, refreshments, SWAT and hazmat displays, Neighborhood Watch information and much more. Go online for details: www.a2gov.org/safetyopenhouse.
SEMCOG to share regional transportation updates
The Southeast Michigan Council of Governments is hosting public meetings for the 2040 Regional Transportation Plan and Fiscal Year 2014–2017 Transportation Improvement Program (www.semcog.org/2040RegionalTransportationPlan.aspx). The public is invited to learn more about these initiatives, with one meeting taking place in the Ann Arbor area.
Join SEMCOG Wednesday, May 8, 3–5 p.m. at Washtenaw Community College, 4800 E. Huron River Drive. Go online for details: www.semcog.org/.
A2 Open City Hall
Weigh in from the comfort of your keyboard! You can voice your opinion about timely topics in Ann Arbor — and read what others are saying — with A2 Open City Hall, www.a2gov.org/pages/opencityhall.aspx. New topics are introduced regularly; and coming this month: Share your input on art in public places.
Dedication ceremony for East Stadium bridges is May 14
A brief dedication ceremony of the new East Stadium bridges will take place at 10 a.m., Tuesday, May 14 near 1501 S. State Street, next to the East Stadium Boulevard bridges over South State Street. The city will be joined by Congressman John Dingell and representatives from the U.S. Department of Transportation, as well as officials from Michigan Department of Transportation, Washtenaw County, project contractors and neighbors. Temporary public parking will be available on the University of Michigan Red Lot, adjacent to the bridge over South State Street.
The project began in 2011, and opened to the public in 2012. The reconstruction has resulted in two new bridges; on-street bike lanes; a new sidewalk on the south side and widened sidewalk along the north side of East Stadium Boulevard; a new sidewalk along the west side of South State Street with a signalized pedestrian crossing of the railroad tracks; two staircases connecting East Stadium Boulevard to South State Street; ADA-compliant facilities with an accessible path between South State Street and East Stadium Boulevard; storm water quality improvements; new water mains; improvements to Rose-White Park; landscaping; and many other features. The bridges carry more than 24,000 vehicles daily.
The city received funding from USDOT for $13.9 million in TIGER II Discretionary Grant Funding, and about $1.67 million and $1.20 million, respectively, in Local Bridge Program and Transportation Enhancement Funding. All told, approximately $16.8 million (or about 73 percent of the total estimated project costs) in state and federal funds went toward completing the project. The remaining 27 percent of the project was funded via various city sources including the Ann Arbor voter-approved Street and Bridge Resurfacing and Reconstruction Millage as the required local-match for the grants.
Volunteers wanted for river clean-up efforts
The Department of Environmental Quality and the Great Lakes Commission has awarded Ann Arbor a grant of $3,254 to fund river clean-up efforts. Ann Arbor is one of 13 local governments to receive a grant.
The city's initiative, A2 Keeping the River Clean, will work to maintain the 7 mile-long stretch of the Huron River in Ann Arbor, removing trash throughout the summer season. Its location in an urban environment, with busy roadways and popular parks, makes this stretch of the Huron River a particularly worthy recipient of extra clean-up attention.
A2 Keeping the River Clean will help support 15 volunteer river clean-up programs with a total of 300 volunteers participating in 2013. The city's GIVE 365 volunteer program (www.a2gov.org/volunteer) will lead the river cleanups throughout the city. If you have a group that would like to participate in a river clean-up event, please contact the Give 365 Volunteer Program, 734.794.6230, extension 42510 / firstname.lastname@example.org.
Street closures planned for Ann Arbor Marathon
The Ann Arbor Marathon will return for its second year, on Sunday, June 9. As a result, numerous streets throughout the city will be temporarily closed.
Go online to view the race course map to see which streets will be closed for the marathon; there are many: http://theannarbormarathon.com/home/course-information. The marathon begins at 6:30 a.m., and streets are scheduled to reopen at 12:30 p.m. Please plan your travels in around the city accordingly, avoiding the area if possible, and be prepared for high traffic volumes and delays.
As with any public event — and even in your day-to-day routine — always be aware of your surroundings (www.dhs.gov/if-you-see-something-say-something-campaign). If you see something that seems out of place or suspicious, report it to local law enforcement. The Ann Arbor police desk phone number is 734.994.2911. Or, in the case of emergency, call 9-1-1.
Ann Arbor shares sustainability report highlights
Ann Arbor residents helped produced 12,268 tons of recyclable materials in 2012. ReCommunity, Ann Arbor’s recycling partner, is sharing a report featuring the overall impact of these extraordinary local recycling efforts.
Ann Arbor residents can view a copy of the report online (www.recommunity.com/asr) for fun comparisons equating the amount of recycled material to the amount of trees and oil saved, jobs created and more.
What’s contained in 12,268 tons of recyclable material in Ann Arbor?
- 1,426,950 aluminum cans or enough energy to power a CFL light bulb 3,258 hours.
- 22,035,077 plastic bottles or the equivalent of saving 640,192 gallons of oil.
- 1,665,218,297 sheets of paper or the equivalent of 140,423 trees.
- 6,459,361 glass bottles or enough energy to power 1,548 computers for a week.
What’s the economic impact of recovering 12,268 tons of recyclable materials: 25 jobs created.
Additional environmental impacts of recovering 12,268 tons of recycled materials:
- 35,602 metric tons of CO2-equivalent greenhouse gases prevented, which equates to removing 6,521 cars from the road annually.
- 15,773 cubic yards of landfill space saved, which equates to 1,011 Olympic-sized swimming pools filled with garbage.
City pools get ready to make a splash
Memorial Day weekend signifies the start of summer and coincides with the opening of the Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation Services three outdoor pools: Fuller, Buhr and Veterans Memorial park pools. Season passes, valid from May 25 to Sept. 2, 2013, are on sale now and can be used at Buhr, Fuller and Veterans Memorial pools for all public swim times and tot splashes. Passes may be purchased at all of the pools, the Parks and Recreation Customer Service Center (Cobblestone Farm, 2781 Packard Road), or they can be renewed online. Go online for rates, times and more information (www.a2gov.org/parks).
Canoeing for Kids raises funds for at-risk campers
The City of Ann Arbor canoe liveries are partnering with the Summer Camp Scholarships organization (http://campscholarships.org/) to help send area high-risk children to residential camp. The Canoeing for Kids summer-long fundraiser will offer the public three river adventures: one exploring Gallup Pond and its environs; and either a 1.5 hour or 2.5 hour river trip traversing the new Argo Cascades. Visit the Camp Scholarships website for ticket purchase information. A portion of every ticket sale will fund an underserved child’s camp experience.
SCS is partnering with various agencies throughout the county to reach out to local children who are homeless, in foster care and who have been removed from their homes due to neglect or other abuse in order to offer them a camp experience. And a full scholarship to camp is just part of the generous gesture. SCS will also give every first-year camper a sleeping bag and duffel bag, a gift card to purchase clothes, and SCS will deposit money in every child’s camp bank. A volunteer assists each family with filling out the necessary paperwork and even arranging carpools.
As the Gallup Canoe Livery, 3000 Fuller Road, is currently under construction until May 25, please instead visit the Argo Canoe Livery, 1055 Longshore Drive, for all boat rentals during this time. Argo is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. For details, call 734.794.6241 or visit www.a2gov.org/canoe.
Listen in to CTN
On Air with CTN’s exclusive guest for the May podcast is Mickey Bogart. Bogart has been a community producer at CTN since 2001. With 13 years of experience, he has created many popular and well-known programs for Ann Arbor. His most recognized program was 2012. Now that the end of the Mayan Calendar has come and gone, he has been producing After 2012.
The May podcast features Bogart’s past and present productions, along with how he got stated at CTN. Listen in to learn more: http://ctnannarbor.blogspot.com/.
Farmers Market returns on Wednesdays
In addition to Saturdays, the Ann Arbor Farmers Market is again open on Wednesdays, through December. The market has resumed its seasonal extended hours as well, 7 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Still wishing for more market time? Come June, you’re in luck. The Evening Ann Arbor Farmers Market will be back, 4 until 8 p.m. on Wednesdays, beginning June 5 through October. The Evening Market is a truly unique experience, with fresh market staples, live music, a beer and wine garden that benefits a local non-profit organization and periodic educational events and chef demos.
For updates, visit the Ann Arbor Farmers Market online, www.a2gov.org/market, or become a fan on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/a2market.
Ann Arbor gets ready to bloom
Help keep Ann Arbor beautiful! The 25th annual Downtown Blooms Day is Saturday, May 18, 9 a.m. to noon. Volunteers will plant flowers, mulch planters and help spruce up the downtown areas. Pre registration is requested; contact Communications Liaison Nancy Stone at 734.794.6000, extension 43112, email@example.com. Please fill out a volunteer waiver form online to turn in at the event, available at www.a2gov.org/government/publicservices/fieldoperations/solidwasteunit/Pages/A2DowntownBloomsDay.aspx.
Check in is 9 until 10 a.m. at Liberty Plaza, between East Liberty and South Division. Free event parking is available in the Library Lot structure (only).
Volunteers will receive a free t-shirt and pizza lunch, in addition to great appreciation from the city and downtown organizations. Supplies will be provided, although some volunteers may wish to bring their own gardening gloves and trowel. Please dress for the weather. The event will proceed, rain or shine!
The Ann Arbor Disability Commission is sponsoring a group of volunteers who will be planting a “sensory garden” in the area of Liberty Plaza on Saturday, May 18 at 9 a.m. during A2 Blooms Day. A range of plants will be included in this special garden, which will be fun to touch and smell. If you are interested in volunteering or making a donation, please send an email, with subject: Sensory Garden Blooms Day, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
With more than 150 city parks throughout Ann Arbor, there’s one in nearly every neighborhood. Find your local park, and join the camaraderie at the annual Adopt-a-Park Kick Off, 9 a.m. until noon on Saturday, May 18.
Park volunteers will plant and maintain flower beds, trails and paths; paint and care for park structures; clean up litter; and mulch and water trees. The activities are determined by the needs of the park and the volunteers' interest! This is also a great opportunity to meet your neighbors.
Training, tools and support are provided. For more information and participating park locations: 734.794.6627 / email@example.com, or visit www.a2gov.org/news/Pages/NAPMay2013Events.aspx.
Rain barrel sale
Through May 13, the discounted rain barrel sale continues, courtesy of the City of Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner, Huron River Watershed Council, Washtenaw County Road Commission, Great Lakes Rain Barrels and Barton Hills Village. Go online now to order a rain barrel, for pick up Saturday, May 18 at the Washtenaw County Road Commission, 555 N. Zeeb Road.
Prices are at least 20 percent off regular retail prices, and without shipping charges homeowners save even more. Go online, www.hrwc.org/rainbarrels/, to get the promotional code and to purchase a rain barrel today!
Area highway construction scheduled
Michigan Department of Transportation (www.michigan.gov/mdot) is planning to begin construction on Ann Arbor-area highways this summer. The following is a summary of the scheduled work:
- M-14/US-23: May through August, MDOT will mill and repave the road surface. This work will be conducted during the nighttime hours, and at least one lane of traffic will remain open.
- I-94 from Carpenter Road to M-14: This work will begin after July 4 with concrete patching work, which will occur over the course of four weekends. On these weekends, the highway will be completely closed in one direction (two weekends for eastbound and two weekends for westbound). Following this work, MDOT will be resurfacing the stretch of I-94 from approximately Scio Church Road to the Ann Arbor Railroad crossing east of State Street. This work will also be done at night, and will not necessitate the closure of the highway.
MDOT will share more details later this summer as they become available.
Keep up to date with City of Ann Arbor road projects and event-related closures and detours by visiting — and subscribing to updates from — the city’s road and lane closures Web page: www.a2gov.org/Alerts/Pages/EventRoadClosuresandDetours.aspx.
Grads on CTN
Community Television Network, www.a2gov.org/ctn, is still accepting photos of Ann Arbor high school graduates to showcase throughout May and June on the Educational Channel electronic bulletin board (Comcast Channel 18. If someone close to you is graduating this year, why not send a unique and exciting congratulations wish on TV! CTN reaches more than 72,000 households in Ann Arbor and surrounding communities.
Simply submit a digital photograph (senior photo, homecoming, prom, sporting event) of the graduate with their full name, high school and who is congratulating them, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Photos will start airing Monday, May 6.
The photograph must be digital (800x600 pixels) and may be resized or cropped at CTN’s discretion. No hard copies will be accepted.
If you have questions, contact Melissa Bondy at 734.794.6150, extension 41504, or email@example.com.
Calling all superheroes and princesses!
Gather your little superhero, prince or princess (in costume, of course!), and join Cinderella and Spiderman for this fun-filled afternoon event. Go on a kryptonite treasure hunt, and get “tattoos” or a princess mini make-up session. Superheroes and prince/princesses will learn how to be a junior crime watcher; and the event ends with a special snack and red carpet fashion show for all the (parent) paparazzi.
Pre registration is required; this event normally fills up quickly! Be sure to sign up early. Call the senior center to register (please provide the name of the child/age and the parent/adults contact information) at 734.794.6250. Credit cards/cash/check are accepted. The office is open Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Ann Arbor has recently been recognized in the following ways.
- Ann Arbor has been ranked the No. 8 Happiest U.S. City according to Live Science.
- The City of Ann Arbor has received a 2013 Healthy Workplace Award from Washtenaw County Public Health. The award recognizes organizations that are promoting healthy behaviors with their employees. Details: www.ewashtenaw.org.
- The City of Ann Arbor has been named a 2013 Computerworld Honors Laureate. Among other qualities, honorees are evaluated on their measurable results of applying technology to meet a specific social or business need. Ann Arbor was selected from more than 700 nominations to become one of 269 Laureates from 29 countries.
MI Big Green Gym
Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation Services, in partnership with The Michigan Recreation and Park Association, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, is participating in MI Big Green Gym (www.mrpaonline.org/Programs/MI-Big-Green-Gym), a program focused on helping families and individuals throughout Michigan improve their physical, spiritual and mental health by taking their workouts outdoors.
MI Big Green Gym encourages Ann Arbor residents to take advantage of their park system — with 157 parks, miles of hiking and biking trails, the Huron River, and fitness interests from yoga and swimming to hiking and paddling on offer. Among the events featured on MI Big Green Gym are golf course events such as Mother’s
Day Special and Nite Lite Golf; Stand-Up Paddling (SUP) 101, Full Moon Paddles and Huron River Day at the canoe liveries; and Summer Splash Days at Veterans Memorial Park and Buhr Park and Fuller Park pools.
See the events calendar and learn more online: www.mrpaonline.org/Programs/MI-Big-Green-Gym.
Dates to remember
Among the many public meetings/events taking place in May, including those featured in articles this month, here are some of the highlights. Go online for a complete list, www.a2gov.org/calendar.
- Wednesday, May 1, Farmers Market Wednesdays return, 7 a.m.-3 p.m.
- The South Fourth Avenue improvement project public meeting is Wednesday, May 8.
- Saturday, May 11 is the Ann Arbor Safety Services Family Open House.
- East Stadium Bridges dedication ceremony is Tuesday, May 14.
- Downtown Blooms Day and Adopt-a-park Kick Off are Saturday, May 18.
- Gallup Canoe Livery and the city’s outdoor pools are scheduled to open Saturday, May 25.
- On Memorial Day, Monday, May 27, city government offices are closed. There will also be no trash/recycling/compost collection on this Monday. Collection will be delayed by one day, Tuesday through Saturday.
City Contact Info
City Clerk’s Office
Second floor, Larcom City Hall
Larcom City Hall
301 E. Huron St., Ann Arbor
734.994.2700 / 734.794.6000
Customer Service Center
First floor, 301 E. Huron St., Ann Arbor
Parks and Recreation Customer Service
2781 Packard Road, Ann Arbor
Planning and Development
First floor, 301 E. Huron St., Ann Arbor
Police Services (now located in the Justice Center, adjacent to Larcom City Hall, 301 E. Huron St.)
Trash collection, recycling, etc.
Web address: www.a2gov.org/recycle
The following list highlights additional city resources located on the city publications/stay connected Web page or in hard-copy format in the lobby of City Hall. Copies of city’s major plans can also be viewed in the City Clerk’s office.
- Natural Area Preservation newsletter
- Parks and recreation program brochure
- Fire services newsletters
- Tree Town Log monthly calendar and online calendar
- WasteWatcher quarterly newsletter
- Water Matters quarterly newsletter
If you know a city resident who requires this newsletter in an alternative format, please email the city communications office or call 734.794.6110, extension 41105.
Persons with disabilities are encouraged to participate in public meetings. Accommodations, including sign language interpreters, may be arranged by contacting the City Clerk’s office at 734.794.6140 or by written request via email, or mailed or delivered to the City Clerk’s office, 301 E. Huron St., Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Requests need to be received at least 48 hours in advance of the meeting.
City Mission Statement
The City of Ann Arbor is committed to providing excellent municipal services that enhance the quality of life for all through the intelligent use of our resources while valuing an open environment that fosters fair, sensitive and respectful treatment of all employees and the community we serve.
Go to the city’s Web site for contact information for council members or to determine your ward; or contact the City Clerk’s office, second floor of Larcom City Hall, at 734.794.6140.