Archinect - Architectstasy: Ann Arbor 2015-05-27T14:13:15-04:00 The Ecology Center: Part 1 Jessica A.S. Letaw 2013-06-10T11:40:17-04:00 >2013-06-18T18:36:28-04:00 <p> She can feel like an all-chef/no-cook kitchen, but Ann Arbor wears her heart on her sleeve: you never have to guess what she&rsquo;s thinking. She speaks her mind and she takes her passions seriously. As a town founded in the wilderness, named after its hallmark greenery, Ann Arbor has a long tradition of dedicated service to the environment. Its recycling program is <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">one of the most progressive in the country</a>, its public transport is <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">anchored on sustainable fuels</a>, and it&rsquo;s even home to <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">a unique community festival</a> celebrating the pursuit of net-zero-resource use in homes and communities. The <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Ecology Center</a>, then, is arguably one of Ann Arbor&rsquo;s most central institutions.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> Read the rest here: &nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></p> All-Inclusive Bookstore Includes Great Design Jessica A.S. Letaw 2013-05-31T22:49:00-04:00 >2013-06-17T08:23:46-04:00 <p> There&rsquo;s something to be said for a bookstore whose theme of inclusivity extends to other species (I&rsquo;m looking at you, scratch-hound Duke).&nbsp; There&rsquo;s a lot to be said for a bookstore that&rsquo;s managed to survive the tribulations of Amazon and an economy that has led many of us to cut back on luxuries (although it pains me to call a book a luxury).&nbsp; But what I would most like to say about Ann Arbor&rsquo;s <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Common Language Bookstore</a> is a heartfelt thank you for creating a space that so thoroughly reflects its values and products.</p> When does "historical" begin? Jessica A.S. Letaw 2013-05-16T14:31:20-04:00 >2013-05-21T21:12:10-04:00 <p> reporter Ryan Stanton sums up my response to this proposal in <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">his droll title</a>: &ldquo;19 new Old West Side-style homes coming to Ann Arbor&rsquo;s north side&rdquo;.&nbsp; I couldn&rsquo;t agree with Mr. Stanton more.</p> <p> Read the rest here:</p> <p> <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></p> "Where the old Wal-Mart used to be" Jessica A.S. Letaw 2013-05-16T10:15:14-04:00 >2013-05-16T10:15:14-04:00 <p> In the rural South, where I'm from, the big running joke is that directions are often given in landmarks, and the even bigger joke is that those landmarks don't even have to be there any more for them to be used in wayfinding. &nbsp;Perhaps the biggest joke of all? &nbsp;I still do it, knowing full well every single time I give someone an empty direction, but somehow finding myself helpless against it.</p> <p> Ann Arborites who have been here for more than a few years will remember the old Kroger shopping center on Packard. &nbsp;"Old", in this case, means that both the shopping center is old and its anchor tenant is an erstwhile one: the Kroger closed in 2009. &nbsp;Since then, this otherwise thriving part of time has been the object of intense scrutiny. &nbsp;What, we wondered, would get packed into this site that for some reason is a story and a half below street level?</p> <p> We finally have our answer.</p> <p> Read the rest here:</p> <p> <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></p> The Old Fourth Ward: For Whom the Bell Tolls Jessica A.S. Letaw 2013-05-15T23:32:31-04:00 >2013-05-31T23:49:24-04:00 <p> For anyone who doubts its value, this is why urban planning is so very important.</p> <p> <img alt="" src=""></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> Ask not for whom the bell tolls, friends: it tolls for the Old Fourth Ward.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> The headline for this project&rsquo;s go-ahead reads: &ldquo;City Council Approves 14-story-highrise to Avoid Potentially Costly Lawsuit.&rdquo;&nbsp; That pretty accurately sums up the attitude of those invested in the outcome: <em>We&rsquo;ll do it, but only because we have to.</em></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> Read the rest here:</p> <p> <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"></a></p>