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Old Posted Jun 15, 2014, 3:08 PM
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Washtenaw on the rise: County experiences development boom

Four cranes rise over buildings in downtown Ann Arbor as summertime construction activity surges, promising to permanently alter the city’s skyline.

Growing demand for urban living has lured developers to Ann Arbor, which is rolling on its third year of booming development.

Three high-rise apartment buildings and a University of Michigan graduate student dormitory are all under construction in downtown, with some developers already plotting out their next projects.

Nine private housing projects are either under construction or about to start, which will result in more than 650 new apartments and 57 new condos in the downtown area.

Ann Arbor Mayor John Hieftje said the recession put developers’ plans to build housing for students, professionals and empty nesters downtown on hold, which created pent up demand.

“The market was in the tank and developers couldn’t get financing, so now it’s all coming back,” he said.

Downtown housing is only one piece of Washtenaw County’s development story, which includes four new residential subdivisions, dozens of commercial buildings and major investments totaling roughly $2.5 billion by the university.

How long the construction boom will last is unclear, but one thing is for sure: Development is transforming the county’s landscape.


Toll Brothers is building a 29-home community on Scio Church Road in Lodi Township

The University of Michigan's G.G. Brown Mechanical Engineering addition on North Campus.

A graduate student dormitory is under construction on South Division Street in Ann Arbor.

The 618 S. Main apartment building is under construction in Ann Arbor.

Here are projects within Downtown Ann Arbor that are either under construction or plan to start by the end of the summer or fall.

12 developments to watch in and around downtown Ann Arbor

1. 413 E. Huron

2. 618 South Main

3. Pizza House high-rise

4. Six-story Marriott hotel

5. 414 Main and 401 Fourth

6. 121 Kingsley West

7. The Mark condos

8. Running Fit building addition

9. Montgomery building addition

10. 544 Detroit St.

11. Ann Arbor City Apartments (the only project set to be completed by the end of this summer)

12. 515 N. Fifth Ave.

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