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Old-Foundry Plans OKd

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Old-Foundry Plans OKd

The renovation of the former Ann Arbor Foundry into an apartment and office complex was among several items approved by City Council Wednesday night.

The project, being named the Northern Brewery in honor its original use, was was recommended for acceptance by the Planning Department as a significant improvement for the Jones Drive area in which it is located.

The closed foundry has been the source of numerous neighborhood complaints because of litter and debris that accumulated there. The planners, in a report to council, said: “Perpetuation of this blight will lead only to a continued
decline in the condition and appearance of the neighborhood.”

They also called the "Brewery" plan “well conceived" and an improvement to the neighborhood.

In other action, council approved construction of a small shopping center on N. Maple Road north of Miller Avenue. The 9,000-square foot center may include a convenience grocery store plus smaller shops.

Construction of a branch bank of the Ann Arbor Bank and Trust Co., also was approved, despite objections, for the corner of S. Main Street and Eisenhower Parkway. The plan was opposed by Councilwoman Carol Jones, D-Second
Ward, who claimed the building would result in the loss of a wooded area.

This was denied by Council Robert L. Henry, R-Third Ward, who said the developer has been cooperating with the city to preserve the mature trees. A site plan for the project was approved 6 to 4. with Democrats and Human Rights council members opposing.

Another proposed financial institution for the same vicinity was rejected by council. This involved a site plan for a branch of Ann Arbor Federal Savings & Loan Association on Briarwood Circle. It lost on a 5 to 5 vote, with Mayor James E. Stephenson abstaining because he is on the financial firm’s board of directors.