While construction moves ahead on a new transit center in Dearborn, the focus is on how to develop the land in and around the station and how best to connect it to the community.
The station is scheduled to open in 2014 on Michigan Avenue in west Dearborn and, if all goes well, to be a stimulus for economic development and even a local attraction.
The station is multi-modal, a place where trains, buses, taxis will pick up and drop off passengers. It will be a stop on an Ann Arbor to Detroit Amtrak line which is also undergoing improvements to the tracks and the trains in preparation for high speed rail service between Detroit and Chicago. It can also be a spot for bikers and pedestrians to pick up public transit or carpools. In addition, the center is seen as a way to link Dearborn's neighborhoods to its commercial thoroughfares and landmarks such as The Henry Ford and the Ford Performing Arts Center and major employers and schools such as University of Michigan Dearborn and Henry Ford Community College.
The project is part of a federal transportation plan to stimulate transit-oriented development, which promotes public transit and transit centers as magnet for economic prosperity by leading to the creation of businesses, improvement of neighborhoods and quality of life and by connecting cities and bringing about a sense of place. Dearborn received the largest federal grant in Michigan, $28.2 million, to build the station.
Focuses of the recent public input meetings included what parts or features of the city should connect to the transit station and how it should be designed.
One design could create pedestrian paths rich in landscape with a splash fountain for play, benches and other amenities that make the station a place for the community to come together.
Dearborn was chosen as one of five cities to receive planning and design assistance from the MIPlace Partnership.
The MIPlace Partnership is a collaborative effort of the Michigan Municipal League, Michigan State Housing Development Authority and Michigan State University.
For more information, click here to see the conceptual plan.
Writer: Kim North Shine
Source: City of Dearborn