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Federal Building Concerns Raised

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Hearing Is Tuesday

Federal Building Concerns Raised

By Dan McLeister
Architecture, Real Estate, Building & Construction, Federal Building - Ann Arbor, United States Government - General Services Administration,(News Staff Reporter)

Because of citizen concern
over plans for the propo" "
Federal Building, an "ini.
mational public hearing" will
be held during the Tuesday
meeting of the City Planning
Commission. The regular
Tuesday meeting begins at
7:30 p.m.

Normally a public hearing
wo' °ld when a specific
pror'1 i was submitted, ac-
cording to Martin Overhiser,
Planmn? Department direc-
tor e do not have any-
thiiig yei DO we have titled it
an informational public hear-
ing in which the architects
are supposed to tell us what
they are doing," he said.

Concern has been raised by
citizens that they will not be
able to participate in the for-
mation of plans for t;

al Building, n"Q'•l'";^^ wm.
"I know th; s are con-
cerned that iney will not get
to comment until the con-
structk have been fin-
ished a:.. bulldozers are
parked on tl "hat is the
city's concern, the plan-
ning directorsaid.

ph city Planning Depart-
has had a long dialog

mi federal officials but it

as not been very fruitful,
Overhiser said. We are trying
to get together something to
review, he said. The Planning
Commission has not dealt
with the situation yet, he said.

"The most recent informa-
tion received (July 15) leads
us to believe that the facility
will be a four-story, terraced,
masonry structure with a
glass and tile facade," Over-
hiser said.

Parking for postal custom-
ers (16 spaces) will be
DJ-ovided along Fifth Avenue,





'"n—- -erector said. An

"ices will also
vided lor official park-

)nly with access from
Fourth Avenue. Mail truck
delivery and general service
will have access from Fifth
Avenue; The predominant
orientation for the structure
will be toward Liberty, Over-
hiser said.

A site plan and perspective'"
• drawing will be available for
Planning ( eview
in the near iu-n- -, — -.,1.1.

There is no legal require-
ment that public agencies re-
ceive approval of plans or
comply with local ordinances
as is required of private
developers. "However, the
architect is aware of pertinent
ordinances and is respecting
them in preparing his plans,"
Overhiser said.

The architect informed the
Planning Department that the
G- - - -—;•-.' '^-••i- '
t>- , . ,
tie to the properties by Dec. 1,
and demolition will occur in

January or Feorla'i
according to the pres<

The Planning ; ment
has reviewed anc iented
at some length to the GAS re-
gional office in Chicago on the
first draft of the impact state-
ment, Overhiser said. Copies
of that draft and the depart-
ment comments are available
if citizens wish to see them,
he said.

The GSA is presently comp-
leting the final draft which

" incorporate comments re-
el from a number of
agencies and individuals, the
city planning director said.

The final draft must go to

Washington for revip— '-''"g
with the Council on
mental Quality, and publica-
tion. The statement will then
be available to interested per-
sons and government agen-

The whole process should
take four to six weeks, Over-
hiser said.

The main concerns of the
city are parking, accessed
-the historic building, the Ma-
sonic Temple, on the sJt ,

(^'""'"hiccr ciirf t^o cqiri Si'r
}! 'r^

. pruuamy nut w cuuu^ii f; ;'i

cially during peak hours "Hi"
city plannin •" nd he
was afrai( id be
vehicle access problems in
much the same form as there
is now with the main Post o'
fice on Stadium where tramc
sometimes forms a line which
extends onto Stadium. The
GSA informed the Michigan
H^rsnen' °oriety in June that
mmend that the
'ie be placert "n
.tegister o$ m>
toric Sites.

A letter fromthedtizens


(CAAP) said the small
amount of information so far
available on this current fed-
eral building proposal raises

—Is it true that a high per-
i--;',ge of the site will be
used for a surface parking

—Will useful and historic
structures be cleared for this
parking lot?

—What will be the traffic
impace on Fifth Avenue of
short term parking?

—What will be the fate of
the Main St. post office build-

—What will be the fate of
downtown offices presently
used by federal agencies?

CAAP str"""11' ""commends
that Counc! i)mmission

members review the plans
and hold public review of site
design ^ind impact statements
as quickly as possible before
it is too late to influence

,.plans, said Ethel Lewis, ^ a
member of the planning or-
ganization. CAAP would hope
that this important building

- would be worthy of public
support, she said. "We are
sure local people are. interest-
ed in participating in the
planning before local corn-
mittments are made," she

Mrs. Lewis said CAAP was
initially pleased when it was
announced that a suitable
downtown site was chosen be-
cause it was consistent with
the organization's long inter-
est in the vitality of the down-

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