Team presents walkability report to City Council
Posted on 09/23/2021
City Hall City Council update of Sept. 20 meeting

Report on walkability

Sustainability Committee Chair Dave Guttman and member Kathy Spillane presented a report on “walkability” in the downtown area and focused on two of the nine streets analyzed in the full report: S. Center and Cady St. Following the principles of Jeff Speck (three committee members attended one of his workshops), they detailed several methods to improve walkability. These include having sidewalks, street parking (serves as a buffer between traffic and pedestrians), low speed limits, safe bike lanes and bike/pedestrian crossings, street trees, and diverse, complementary architecture. They also commented on how rerouted traffic around the social district made pedestrian crossings elsewhere more challenging, and noted that handicap parking needs to be closer to accessible pathways and businesses. They strongly recommended that future walkability studies be done in conjunction with traffic studies around new development.

The report was well received by council members, several of whom noted that the time and expertise of Guttman, Spillane and other volunteer committee members has saved costs for the city and provided a sound plan to work with. Spillane asked if the committee could share the report with their new liaison in Wayne County government. Council members concurred as did City Manager Pat Sullivan, who recommended that they highlight the detail on roads managed by the county.

Video surveillance upgraded in downtown

City Council approved the purchase of a new surveillance camera for downtown to replace an older model that was no longer functioning properly. The new PTZ (pan tilted zoom) camera will be on the same network as seven other cameras positioned downtown and will be monitored via the upgraded server at City Hall.

The work will be done by Camtronics of Canton, the same company that installed the new operating system, server and switch for video surveillance at City Hall in 2020. The sealed bid process was waived due to the vendor’s experience, expertise and reasonable pricing.

Additionally, a new wireless point-to-point kit, additional 4TB video storage device, and switches will be installed. The total cost of this project is $12,239. The city will apply for $6,119 in an MMRMA RAP Grant, which is 50% of the cost. The balance will be split between the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) and the city, with each paying $3,060. The city’s portion will be taken from the technology reserves in the Public Improvement Fund.

Citizen comments

Lenore Lewandowski, 119 Randolph, commended council for continuing to hold City Council meetings on Zoom, noting that she has able to attend more meetings due to that format. In the future, she said she would like to see hybrid meetings (held in person and online).

Council communications

Mayor Pro Tem Marilyn Price mentioned several items on the consent agenda that were noteworthy:
• The Northville Youth Network (NYN) report showed 84 students attended weeklong summer camps at Hillside and Meads Mill that helped them transition to sixth grade.
• Three board members have renewed their terms: Roger Schultz, Housing Commission; Aaron Cozart, DDA; and Janice Valade, Senior Advisory Commission.
• The homecoming parade will be held Oct. 8. Halloween, with closed streets, is back on this year from 6 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 31.

Barbara Moroski-Browne updated council on the Riverwalk Committee, noting that 12 people toured the downtown Brighton pond/park area on Sept. 18, and were led by two architecture consultants from Brighton who described the process, challenges and opportunities that were part of the natural water feature development over the years.

Patrick Giesa, who serves on the Senior Advisory Commission, said ridership is up on senior transportation and attendance is up for programs. He said the Senior Fest will be held Oct. 21 at the Community Center.

Andrew Krenz “tipped his hat” for the pro bono design work being done by architects on behalf of the Farmers’ Market Task Force who are sketching concepts for a new market building. He said he is pleased with talks that he and City Manager Pat Sullivan have had with the owner of the McDonald Ford property, which could potentially become the new market site.

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