affordable housing

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Residents will no longer need to face flooding and frequent repairs.

Ann Arbor
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ten years ago Washtenaw County officials came together and drafted a blueprint to end homelessness. While much has been accomplished, the issue remains a challenge.  Ann Arbor Mayor John Hieftje and Chair of the Washtenaw County Commissioners Yousef Rabhi are hosting a new conversation on Affordable Housing and Homelessness.


Courtesy Image / Mitchell and Mouat Architects

Two  affordable housing projects are planned in Ann Arbor that aim to create  sustainable and healthier lives for low-income residents. If it works as planned, it will also add economic and community benefit to the neighborhoods in which they reside. 

Overview

eWashtenaw.org

Washtenaw County wants to get a better idea of how great the need is locally for affordable housing, and has launched an online needs assessment to help make that determination.

Paul Montagno is the Sustainable Communities Coordinator for Washtenaw County's Office of Community and Economic Development.

He says this survey will be very helpful in providing policy direction.

Ann Arbor Logo
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

While most attention was being paid to President Barack Obama visiting Ann Arbor Wednesday, an important sale was completed.  Dennis Dahlmann the owner of the Campus Inn and the Bell Tower Hotel completed the purchase of the former Y-M-C-A lot on South Fifth Avenue. 

City Administrator Steve Powers thinks the sale is a positive in two ways.


Bob Eccles / 89.1 WEMU

If Ypsilanti city staff had hoped to convince Sandy Ellinger that the proposed Water Street Flats affordable housing proposal is a good idea, they were not successful.

Ellinger wasn't for or against the proposal when she came to Tuesday night's City Council workshop on the project, but at the end of the meeting she said if it were up to a vote of the people, she'd vote "no".

Ellinger said she had concerns that the city was going to be "left holding the bag" if the proposal doesn't work out, and she said the appearance of the building was also worrisome. 

The city plans to sell a 3.14 acre parcel of land on the southern edge of the Water Street Redevelopment Area to a developer who would build a four-story, 90-unit apartment building there. 

Everyone who spoke on the subject during the public comment period last night had concerns, which you can listen to below. 

City Council is expected to consider a purchase agreement for the project at its March 4th meeting.

Herman and Kittle Properties

Ypsilanti residents tonight will have an opportunity to learn more about a proposed housing complex  in the Water Street re-development area tonight.  City Planner Teresa Gillotti says the developer is expanding the Water Street Flats project from its initial plan offering. Originally, the 12-million dollar development was to have 76-units of affordable housing. That figure is now 90-units. 

Washtenaw County will be engaging neighbors of the old Juvenile Center on Platt Road in Ann Arbor and other community members to determine how to redevelop the site.  The County Commissioners have given final approval to a community driven process for planning for the 13.5 acre property. 

Courtesy / Facebook / Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley

This week the discussion centers around dispelling the myths of affordable housing. New affordable housing is often equated with being "cheaply built."  We didn't have a definitive answer on the subject, so we went looking. We found that quite opposite is true.  

Our guest this week builds affordable homes in the Metro Detroit Region; quality and efficiency is what makes them affordable. 

Rob Nissly, Housing Director for Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley will discuss the connection between reigning in energy costs and homeownership for lower income residents of Washtenaw County.

Ann Arbor's city council has committed net proceeds from a possible sale of the former YMCA site to the affordable housing trust fund.  Hear more from WEMU's Andrew Cluley.

An affordable housing development in downtown Ann Arbor is getting a new roof and other upgrades thanks to funds from the Downtown Development Authority.  Hear more from WEMU's Andrew Cluley.

Ann Arbor's city council has postponed a decision on a policy to commit the bulk of funds raised from the sale of public lands for affordable housing.  WEMU's Andrew Cluley has more.

Ann Arbor's city council will consider a proposal to have a percentage of the proceeds from the sale of city-owned surface lots to be committted to affordable housing efforts.