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Ann Arbor could end the city’s downtown premium incentives

Josh Hakala
89.1 WEMU

At last night's meeting, the Ann Arbor City Council considered a proposed ordinance that would eliminate premiums on downtown properties.

For decades, premiums have been used to grow the downtown district by incentivizing residential development. However, since 2019, when Ann Arbor’s city planning commission mandated the developers must include affordable housing to get the premium, no developers qualified.

Now, Ann Arbor City Council is considering ending the premium program.

Brett Lenart is the planning manager for the city. He says making it easier to develop residential properties is key to supporting Ann Arbor’s downtown.

“Well, if we really care about the value of having people downtown, doesn’t it make sense to make that regulatory framework more simple for people to be able to achieve that?”

Lenart says the city is also pursuing more effective ways to incorporate affordable housing into the downtown district.

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Taylor Bowie joined WEMU as a reporter in October 2023.
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