Parking and transportation in Ann Arbor have long been contentious issues, and it isn't likely to change anytime soon. The hot topic now is rail transportation versus parking for U of M Hospital employees.
Ann Arbor's Parks Advisory Commission has decided at least for the time being not to wade into the issue. They're recommending a new two year lease for the university to continue using portions of Fuller Park for employee parking.
The proposal includes an early termination if the city's station review group picks the Fuller Road site. Chair David Santacroce doesn't think the early termination clause is likely needed. "I think as a practical matter if the city did decide that's where the new train station went, it would be more than two years from the date of that decision before a shovel actually went into the ground," Santacroce says.
PAC made a similar recommendation on a new lease earlier this summer but City Council asked the advisory board to take a second look at the issue. In the revised recommendation, the commission still proposes a two-year lease, but has added a provision for a seven-and-a-half percent rate increase in the lease rate to U of M.
The train station environmental review, including site selection and a conceptual design, is expected by the end of the year.
City Council is expected to consider the proposal next week.