The former site of Ypsilanti's Elbow Room bar is being put back to use, with a Mexican restaurant moving into the South Washington Street building.
City Planner Teressa Gillotti explains that the building has been empty since the bar closed in 2011, adding that having a strong entertainment district would play a critical role in redeveloping Ypsilanti.
The restaurant's expected to open next spring following renovations.
The Ypsilanti Community Schools Board of Education Monday night approved collecting school taxes in the summer rather than in the winter.
Board President David Bates says summer tax collection is nothing new for district residents. The Ypsilanti and Willow Run districts had been collecting taxes in the summer prior to the consolidation.
Bates says summer tax collection means the district has to borrow less from the state while awaiting state aid payments, which in turn saves taxpayers money because the district is paying less in interest on money borrowed.
WEMU's Issues of the Environment is a weekly feature and is heard each Wednesday at 8:20am, as part of Morning Edition.
In this week's installment, WEMU's David Fair is joined by Ypsilanti City Planner Teresa Gillotti. The city has been looking to re-purpose the 38-acre water Street property since 199, and now there is it looks as though there will be development in 2014.
The land has required some environmental remediation, and any new development will have to meet Ypsilanti's Master Plan goals. And, of course, it must ensure the health of the Huron River. Listen below as David and Teresa look at the environmental issues surrounding Ypsilanti's Water Street property.
Efforts to increase public transportation in Washtenaw County's urban core took another step forward last night. Ann Arbor City Council has approved a plan for Ypsilanti Township to join the Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority. Council voted 11 to nothing in favor of the resolution last night.
The Ypsilanti Community Schools Board of Education Monday night approved placing the question of whether to collect taxes in the summer rather than the winter on the agenda for its first meeting in December.
Superintendent Scott Menzel says a summer collection is something the board approved seperately last year for the Ypsilanti and Willow Run school districts.
Menzel says there are benefits to a summer tax collection, including needing to borrow less money from the state to keep things going until the district's state aid payment is received.
The board also approved a one-month extension to interim Technology Director Matthew McCarty's contract.
McCarty is leaving the district, and the extension will cover the period from November 1st through his last day with Ypsilanti Community Schools - December 6th.
And the board had a budget presentation from CFO Scott Johnson, who pegged the district's estimated 2013-14 year-end fund balance at $7.3 million - about $300,000 less than budgeted.
A year from now, the City of Ypsilanti will have a new Mayor. Paul Schreiber announced over the weekend he will not seek re-election in 2014. Schreiber was first elected mayor in 2006, and will have completed eight years in office when next November's election rolls around. In his written announcement Sunday, Schreiber said he has enjoyed his seven years as Mayor, but now it's time to step aside to allow the next Mayor to lead the city.
Ypsilanti Mayor Paul Schreiber hasn't said whether he'll run for re-election in 2014, but if he does, he'll face a challenge from Amanda Edmonds.
The Growing Hope Executive Director is also vice-chair of the Ypsilanti Downtown Development Authority. She's vice-chair of the Washtenaw Food Policy Council, and was appointed by the Governor to a similar organization at the state level.
Ypsilanti continues to push forward with a goal of becoming a solar destination.
What began as a grassroots effort in 2005, has progressed to the point where the Ypsilanti City Council has passed a resolution establishing a goal of having one-thousand solar roofs in the city by the year 2020. Our guest this week is Dave Strenski.
He launched Solar Ypsiback in 2005, and you can see the grassroots efforts successes at a variety of locations around the city.
Eastern Michigan University students and others remembered 20 year old student athlete Demarius Reed with a march, rally, and candlelight vigil. Among those participating were Reed's mother and the family of Julia Niswender who was killed less than a year ago.
Eastern Michigan University and area police agencies will immediately begin collaborating on patrols of the LeForge Road area north of EMU's campus.
One week after the death of 20 year-old Demarius Reed, an Eastern Michigan University student athlete found dead in the University Green apartment complex, law enforcement is collaborating to step up patrols in the area. EMU's Department of Public Safety will work with officers from the Ypsilanti Police department and Washtenaw County Sheriff's Deputies to patrol the LeForge Road area.
Eastern Michigan University and area police agencies will immediately begin collaborating on patrols of the LaForge Road area north of the EMU campus.
The university says the EMU Department of Public Safety will work with Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township police and the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office, with each dedicating officers specifically to patrol the area.
EMU Police Chief Bob Heighes says each evening, assigned officers will meet at the university's Public Safety headquarters to coordinate their efforts.
About 250 people are taking part in a "Increase the Peace" march across the Eastern Michigan University campus this afternoon.
Among those in attendance - the mother of 20 year-old EMU student athlete Demarius Reed and several other family members. Reed was found dead in his apartment complex suffering from several gunshot wounds, the victim of what investigators say may have been a robbery.
Also marching today are family members of Julia Niswender, an EMU student who was found dead in her off-campus apartment almost one year ago.
Eastern Michigan University officials continue to meet with representatives from the city of Ypsilanti and others to discuss ways to improve safety in response to a string of off-campus attacks on students, including the death of Wide Receiver Demarius Reed.
To reach out to a wider group of students a public safety meeting was held in the middle of the food court at lunch time at the Student Center Wednesday.
EMU President Susan Martin says they're working quickly to improve security off campus. She says a meeting with campus police and department leadership was taking place today.
Martin says a meeting with Ypsilanti officials took place yesterday, with another planned for Friday. She says they're "moving as quickly as we can".
EMU Police chief Bob Heighes says students are safe on campus, but they need to get involved by calling the police when they see things. He says they are working with the city to improve safety off-campus as well.
Students are leading a Stop the Violence march, rally, and vigil Thursday.