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721 N. Main Street

(123 W. Summit)

Site Context + Assumptions
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  • November 18, 2019, R-19-518 Directed the City Administrator to work with the DDA, Treeline Conservancy and other community partners to conduct a community engagement process around the optimal development options in support of affordable housing
  • April 19, 2021 AAHC shares results of community engagement process with City Council
  • April 19, 2021 City Council agenda item 21-0610 requesting approval to divide the property between the floodway/floodplain and a 14,520 SF Summit Street facing the portion that is not in the floodway/floodplain and designate the AAHC as the developer of the property that is not in the floodway/floodplain
  • Next Steps: AAHC hires development team, starts site plan approval process and secures development financing

The project will be discussed at the June 14, 2021 City Council Work Session.

Click to view: City Council presentation


721 N. Main is a 5.26-acre site on the north side of downtown. The property currently used by the City Public Services Department for municipal parking. There are two warehouse buildings on the site that are no longer in use. The site is currently zoned PL, Public Land. The site is within the floodway and floodplain. The site has been remediated and currently meets standards for unrestricted residential use; however, the FEMA grant used to finance the environmental clean-up placed additional use restrictions on the site limiting the future development.

This property is a key link in The Treeline Allen Creek Urban Trail master plan. The preliminary concepts are design to accommodate all proposed options for the Treeline route at this location. The recommended action is to split the parcel to create a smaller development site along Summit(123 W. Summit) which is outside of the floodplain and leave the majority of721 N. Main intact for a future use to be determined by the city in accordance with the vision of the Treeline master plan.

Key adjacent uses include the railroad immediately to the west and the Ann Arbor Community Center and the Ann Arbor Distillery to the south. The potential recommended zoning for the site is C1, Local Business District. This is consistent with the current zoning along Summit St. C1 zoning allows for a maximum of 3 stories and a Floor Area Ratio (FAR) of 100% by right. There are no affordable housing bonuses for the C1 zoning.

From a financial perspective, 721 N. Main has multiple site constraints that reduce the traditional rental subsidy options. For instance, this site would not be eligible for Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) development. However, this site may be developed using the affordable housing payment in lieu funds. The concepts consider different housing typologies to maximize the total unit count within the current site constraints and zoning requirements. Resident and visitor parking are provided on-site for all options. This site does not accommodate future trailhead parking for the Treeline.

The City is considering the following objectives for redeveloping 721 N. Main

- Maximize affordable housing units below 60% AMI

- Maximize market rate housing units

- Develop a mix of housing unit types and prices

- Engage the Treeline Trail

- Fit in with existing adjacent building heights and scales

- Provide parking on site

- Maintain some City ownership/control

- Fit in with existing adjacent building heights and scales

- Sell the property and use proceeds for affordable housing on another city-owned property

Conceptual Development Options
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