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SG-W:/ greenbelt



Dear all:
I am a new writer (but longtime reader) to this listserve and I hope I
have posted correctly. 
First let me say briefly that I am a resident of Ann Arbor, I work for
the UM Hospital, and I have sat on the Northside Area Citizens' Advisory
Committee of Ann Arbor for three years.
In reading the discussion about this greenbelt proposal, I cannot agree
more that there is a contradiction involved. Stopping sprawl and
greenbelts is one thing, but directing development to urban areas such
as Ann Arbor is another. In my view, the citizens in Ann Arbor, although
not entirely anti-growth, are pretty wary of most development proposals
near them. As a matter of fact, this proposal itself is seeking to
increase the purchase of land within the city limits and not just
outside it (did I read this correctly?). Part of the reason the current
millage to purchase land was approved by the voters was that it was seen
as a tool to stop development (in my opinion). And in my own experience
with the Northside Area advisory committee, there was a very strong
desire among many on the committee to limit new development (if there
was to be any development) to single-family low density development
(although this was never explicitly stated). Lower Town, of course, was
the exception, but there is a very strong neighborhood contingent on
Broadway that does not want high density development there. If you need
more proof of this, look at the reaction to development proposals on
sites that are located fairly close to the center of the city of Ann
Arbor. For example, the neighborhood rejected a proposal for condos on a
site on Washtenaw near Hill--that site is still a vacant lot.
If Pittsfield Township rejected Newmarket, shouldn't we expect the same
reaction from other townships? Perhaps an interesting question to answer
would be, what areas within Washtenaw County are appropriate for new
towns or development (and then see what kind of reaction comes from
those who live nearby).
If any of you feel that I am wrong about anti-development sentiment in
Ann Arbor, my mind is certainly open to what you have to say.
Thanks for letting me contribute.
Scott Reetz



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