Ann Arbor

STEAM at Northside
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor Public Schools have rolled out a variety of new initiatives this year. Many of the changes are a result of last year's Listen and Learn tour by Superintendent Jeanice Swift. The new STEAM at Northside program's different approach to education has resulted in an enrollment spike.

4th and William parking structure
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Starting in January you may need to dig a little deeper in your pocket to pay for parking in Ann Arbor. The Downtown Development Authority is proposing hikes to some parking rates.  

Citizens for Oil-Free Backyards

It's ball one in Scio Township.  A Traverse City-based oil and gas company was looking for a strike as it dug its first exploratory well in search of fossil fuel deposits, but missed the plate.  Some local lawmakers and drilling opponents now hope to get on base in Lansing.

University of Michigan Central Campus
Andrew Cluley

The University of Michigan is celebrating the inauguration of Mark Schlissel as the school's 14th president.  Many students don't know much about Schlissel and have varied thoughts on what they want him to do.

Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor area residents will celebrate the local food movement tomorrow evening at the Seventh Annual Homegrown Festival.  A lot goes into taking produce from area farms to a finished dish to eat.

Ann Arbor Public Schools
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

In her first year on the job Ann Arbor Public Schools Superintendent Jeanice Swift led a wide variety of changes in an effort to meet community desires and boost attendance.

Deer Damaged Bush
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Deer, they're majestic, graceful and, to some Ann Arbor residents, a major nuisance.  So much so that City Council has committed $20,000 to get public buy-in on a plan to manage the deer population.  

Renewable energy

In 2008 Michigan lawmakers approved a requirement for 10 percent of the state's power to come from renewable sources by the end of 2015. Utilities are on pace to likely hit that target, but it's unclear what the state's energy policy will be going forward.  A bipartisan group of lawmakers hope the upcoming energy policy discussion will led to fewer barriers for individuals and small groups to produce and sell green power.

Barbara Lucas / 89.1 WEMU

After years of industrial contamination and economic stagnation, things may be turning around in Ann Arbor’s Lower Town, thanks to a new recreational feature in the Huron River, and the soon-to-be-announced DTE proposal to develop the Mich-Con property across the river.  Community responses are mixed, ranging from cautious optimism to elation.

Repair work continues on the Ann Arbor Senior Center.

The center was closed earlier this month and its programs temporarily relocated when the building's drywall ceiling started separating from the rafters.

Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation manager Collin Smith says they should finish repairs soon and have the center reopened early next month.

Veterans Memorial Park Pool Re-Opens

Aug 27, 2014

If you've been looking forward to one last cannon ball or belly flop at Veterans Memorial Park pool in Ann Arbor, now's your chance.

The city has completed repairs to the pool and it's been re-opened.  Problems with the filtration system kept the pool closed since Saturday.

Bill Meeks is the park's Recreation Supervisor. He says they'll be closing the pool for the season on Monday.

Michigan Teachers and Allies for Change

With most schools opening next week a group of parents, teachers, and other supporters of public education are holding a rally Thursday night in Ann Arbor's Liberty Plaza.  The rally is designed to focus on the positives public schools bring to communities and the need for additional funding.

Washtenaw Housing Alliance

It's still summer but some in Washtenaw County are already looking ahead to the challenges winter poses for the homeless community.  The Washtenaw Housing Alliance and the county's Office of Community and Economic Development are trying to find a location suitable to serve as a warming center for homeless people.

Sharing and exchanging skills is not a new concept, but the A2 TimeBank hopes to corral locals into organizing into a true community resource, building for the future.  


Washtenaw County's First Same Sex Marriage
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

In courtrooms from Cincinnati to Detroit the issue of marriage equality is being decided.  Still, it is likely that the U-S Supreme Court will have the final say.  No matter the decisions along the way, Washtenaw County will be prepared.

Ann Arbor-Saline Road
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

The major headache that is the Ann Arbor-Saline road project is about to improve some. The project isn't over, but beginning Wednesday Phase III gets underway.

Ann Arbor Public Schools
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

With Ann Arbor Public Schools starting in just over a week, staff is closely monitoring enrollment figures. It's always a fluid number at this time of year, but the district faces more uncertainty this year.

Gates Foundation / Foter / Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

As parents get ready to send children back to school, health officials are calling for kids to get appropriate vaccinations.  The request comes at a time when more Washtenaw County parents opt out of vaccinations than other counties in the state.     

Washtenaw County Public Health Immunizations Coordinator Chris Karpinski says vaccines are a safe easy way to prevent illness from spreading.

Liberty Plaza
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Panhandling, drug use, and public safety concerns continue to plague Ann Arbor's Liberty Plaza. The Parks Advisory Commission intends to study whether more programmed activities is the right solution.

Citizens for Oil-Free Backyards

The Scio Township Board of Trustees unanimously passed a six month moratorium on all oil and gas operations.  A lead critic of the drilling says this is already making a difference.

Michigan Theater /

Movie openings, special screenings and Hollywood news. It's all covered in this week's installment of Cinema Chat with Michigan Theater Executive Director and CEO Russ Collins!   

Flickr/ CC/ Alfredo Mendez

For now, you can still catch a ride in Ann Arbor from alternative providers Uber and Lyft.  Proposed regulatory changes to the city's taxicab ordinance to include those services stalled out before City Council this week and the reaction has been mixed.

Ann Arbor Senior Center
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Bridge isn't a game typically played at Burns Park Elementary School, but it will for the next few weeks.  Burns Park is among the sites hosting Ann Arbor Senior Center events while repair work is finished at the senior's damaged facility. 

Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

A new school of fish is Ann Arbor's latest public art project, and one of the last works to be funded by the city's now defunct percent for art program.  The sculptures were installed Monday at the rain garden on Kingsley and First.

Ann Arbor
Andrew Cluley / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor City Council is considering a $20,000 public engagement plan that will begin an effort to manage the local deer population.