Sunday, September 16, 2012

One Year On The Job

If only Steve Powers chose school administration as a career, then we might be able to call him Super Powers. Alas, he chose municipal government work, so "City Administrator Steve Powers" will have to do. Powers started on the job almost exactly a year ago, arriving in Ann Arbor by way of Marquette County where he served as county administrator for 15 years. Now that he has a full year under his belt, the Illinois native sat down with me on Thursday to talk about his first year's experience. Read the Q&A.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

I Love My Dog

Social Studies

The University of Michigan is planning to break ground this fall on construction of a $29 million addition to the Division Street side of its Institute for Social Research building. The project website, last updated on Aug. 13, describes it as a five-level, 56,700-square-foot addition (four levels above grade). Construction is expected to last through early 2014. U-M describes its decades-old Institute for Social Research as the oldest and largest academic survey and social research organization in the world. Read the story.

Knights Of The Round Table

This was the scene on a recent afternoon in Liberty Plaza, a concrete pocket park at the southwest corner of Liberty and Division in downtown Ann Arbor. The park is infamous for attracting homeless people and drug users. But on this afternoon, these two men engaged in a friendly game of chess. The man in the red wouldn't talk or let me photograph him, but the other man identified himself as a local pastor.

King Me

One of the things that makes downtown Ann Arbor a great place is the pride business owners take in keeping up the appearance of their shops. Here the front window of King's Chosen furniture at 317 S. Main St. gets a good cleaning.

Model For Mobility

Summer is nearing its end once again, but downtown Ann Arbor is still hopping for the time being with sidewalks and streets filled with pedestrians, bicyclists and automobiles competing for space.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Back To School

Candidates looking to represent Washtenaw County in the Michigan House for the next two years used the first day back to school on Tuesday to frame a debate around education funding. During a news conference outside Beach Middle School in Chelsea, Saline Mayor Gretchen Driskell, a Democrat running for the 52nd District seat held by Rep. Mark Ouimet, said the ability of schools to offer a quality education has been under attack with cuts from the state. She was joined by 53rd District state Rep. Jeff Irwin, D-Ann Arbor; Adam Zemke, an Ann Arbor Democrat running in the 55th District; and Sandy Inman, a retired Chelsea school teacher. Read the story.