RESPONSIBLE GROWTH 

  • does not mean anti-development

The city is growing and changing. As we apply our current zoning laws (and contemplate new ones), we need to be strategic in how we plan for the city’s future. I support responsible development: growth that is sensitive to the needs and values of our community.

Of the last 17 developments that came before Council, I voted to approve 14 of them. Every new development brings revenue to our City through additional property taxes, which is a good thing. However, we are often asked to make exceptions and changes to our zoning laws simple make projects bigger and more profitable. In those situations, I eagerly support projects that provide additional public benefit in exchange.

Approved developments at The Glen and 841 Broadway (the old DTE site) are good examples of where zoning changes were approved in exchange for a public benefit (in those case, brownfield abatement). I look for opportunities to leverage additional public benefits whenever we can. Most recently, I led a majority on Council that negotiated with a developer for an $88,200 contribution to our Affordable Housing Fund. These benefits are important to me.

In our community, most developments are not controversial. When we hear concerns, I believe Council should raise questions and represent residents. I have opposed developments that met strong resistance from adjacent neighborhoods or presented other serious challenges. Three developments that I recently voted against were:

 

  • Lockwood: a proposed senior community on top of monitoring wells for the Gelman Plume

  • Brightdawn: a development rejected by the city’s Planning Commission

  • Trinitas: a large student housing complex located off Pontiac Trail, miles away from campus

All three of these proposed developments met significant opposition from surrounding neighbors. I believe that Council should be a voice for residents who have concerns about inappropriate or irresponsible development in their neighborhoods.

Market rate development is clearly not meeting our city needs for affordable and workforce housing. Read more about how I’ve led efforts for affordable housing development.

One of my opponents erroneously states: "In the past few years, however, we've had an anti-development faction growing on city council. They reject housing project after housing project, ..." A2 YIMBY,  11/7/18

  • and it means maintaining basic infrastructure

on the rezone of a single family parcel and the quality of life of the residents

Jack  speaks about how poorly Ann Arbor has done keeping up basic services and infrastructure while focusing on expensive projects with less benefit.

Jack speaks at 1:14:24 in the full video (City Council meeting, 4/6/20 ) 

"Council Member Jack Eaton, D-4th Ward, said he considers this evidence that the city needs to do a better job taking care of basic infrastructure."

Prior to 2018, our City Council representatives have repeatedly voted against restoring lost services and proposals to increase public safety staffing. They’ve voted for spending on art and consultants. Let’s prior­itize spending so that we fund services.

  • After a decade of neglecting the maintenance of our streets, the City has finally developed and is implementing a plan to restore our streets.
     

  • We experience stormwater flooding problems in the city. The City has begun to address those problems. We will need to insist that our stormwater solutions receive adequate funding in the coming years.
     

  • Streets are now being repaired rather than patched and repatched.

 

Thanks to Jack’s persistent advocacy, many road construction projects are underway in Ward 4 neighborhoods this summer.

Map showing Ward 4 Road Construction Projects happening in 2020

(link to City webpage: 2020 Resurfacing/Restoration projects)

  • and it means neighborhood friendly growth

Postponment of development due to insufficient time for citizen input.

Jack speaks at 5:31:55 and 5:46:29 in the full video (City Council meeting, 4/20/20 

on the rezone of a single family parcel and the quality of life of the residents:

Jack  speaking about his reasons for rejecting the rezoning for the Lockwood project (rather than rejecting the project itself). The developer asked for a postponement for further study, but was denied due to inability to provide further reasons for rezoning having already had two years to present his case.  

Jack speaks at 1:30:31 and at 1:50:34 in the full video (City Council meeting, 2/19/19 ) Supporting him are Jane Lumm at 1:42:50, and Anne Bannister  at 2:15:17. 

Jack speaks at 4:53:38 in the full video; David Silkworth at 3:52:50, Jane Lumm at 4:34:50 and Anne Bannister at 4:41:24. (Council meeting on 3/18/19, where the Lockwood rezoning was ultimately voted down.)

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Jack@Eaton4Council.com  •  734-662-6083

Paid for by John Eaton for Council, 1606 Dicken Dr. Ann Arbor, MI 48103