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350 S. Fifth Avenue

(Former y lot)

Preliminary Design
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350 S. Fifth Avenue is in the site plan approval process.  The Ann Arbor Housing Commission (AAHC) is proposing a new 18-story multi-family development on the existing parking lot at E. William Street between Fourth and Fifth Avenues.  The project will provide approximately 95 affordable housing units in the west tower, 201 mixed-income units in the east tower, and first floor retail space.  The downtown location and proximity to the Blake Transit Center and William Street Bikeway provide unique opportunities to utilize the existing alternative transportation network.

It is anticipated the project will be presented for site plan approval by Planning Commission in spring 2023.


  • May 1, 2018:  City Council adopted a resolution of intent to utilize the property to develop the greatest quantity and quality of affordable and workforce housing.
  • July 1, 2019: City Council voted to contract with SmithGroup to conduct public engagement, develop potential building concepts, and evaluate the feasibility of developing the site.
  • April 20, 2020: City Council voted  to direct the AAHC to develop the property to reflect the D1 downtown core zoning district and incorporate concepts generated through the community engagement process, and to work with staff and Planning Commission to realize development of the property.
  • April 4, 2022: City Council voted to rezone the property to a Planned Unit Development (PUD) to provide the necessary flexibility and supplemental controls needed to achieve multiple site goals while providing for resident and Council input prior to issuing a developer RFP with clear community-supported goals and expectations.


The City of Ann Arbor recently re-acquired 350 S. Fifth Avenue, commonly referred to as the former Y Lot. The site was home to the Ann Arbor YMCA from 1960-2005 until the current YMCA opened at the current West Washington site.  The former YMCA building was demolished in 2008, including 100 affordable units associated with the former building.  The site has served as a surface parking lot and has been at the forefront of several redevelopment considerations over the last decade. The City Council recently adopted Resolution R-18-173 outlining the priorities and criteria for redevelopment of the lot.  The site is currently zoned D1, allowing 400% Floor Area Ratio (a percentage of building area to ground area) and approximately 900% Floor Area Ratio and approximately 18 story building heights with affordable housing bonuses.  Key adjacent uses include the Blake Transit Center to the north, Downtown Library to the east, significant parking structures to the west and northeast, the new William Street bikeway to the south, and lower density uses south of William Street.          

The City has outlined the following objectives for redeveloping the former Y Lot:

  • Maximize affordable housing units
  • Maximize market rate housing
  • Develop a mix of housing types and prices
  • Expand the Blake Transit Center
  • Activate the ground floor for public benefit
  • Maintain some city ownership/control
  • Recapture the cost of purchase
  • Appropriately scale down to the lower density area south of William Street

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