ANN ARBOR, MI — Ann Arbor officials are looking for community feedback on potential affordable housing developments on four city-owned sites.

Working with consultant SmithGroup, the city has launched a community engagement website and online survey to seek input on potential projects at 121 E. Catherine St., 353 S. Main St., 309 S. Ashley St. and 721 N. Main St.

Take the survey.

121 E. Catherine St.

The 121 E. Catherine St. site in downtown Ann Arbor.City of Ann Arbor and SmithGroup

The 121 E. Catherine site is a 49-space parking lot in downtown’s Kerrytown district at the northwest corner of Fourth Avenue and Catherine Street. The site is zoned D2, which allows a building height of six stories.

The city’s Housing Commission is considering a 100% affordable housing development, though there also is potential for a partnership with a developer to have a mix of market-rate and affordable units.

Building options for the site range from four to six stories tall, with anywhere from 57 to 93 affordable housing units.

No onsite parking is required, but it may be important to the neighborhood, the survey states, estimating a three-story underground public parking deck on the site could cost $8 million, financed by the city.

Here are three development options:

121 E. Catherine St.

Option 1 for an affordable housing development at 121 E. Catherine St.City of Ann Arbor and SmithGroup

121 E. Catherine St.

Option 1 details for 121 E. Catherine St.City of Ann Arbor and SmithGroup

121 E. Catherine St.

Option 2 for an affordable housing development at 121 E. Catherine St. City of Ann Arbor and SmithGroup

121 E. Catherine St.

Option 2 details for 121 E. Catherine St.City of Ann Arbor and SmithGroup

121 E. Catherine St.

Option 3 for an affordable housing development at 121 E. Catherine St.City of Ann Arbor and SmithGroup

121 E. Catherine St.

Option 3 details for 121 E. Catherine St.City of Ann

PITTSFIELD TOWNSHIP, MI — A chemical company is building a new innovation center and regional headquarters in the Ann Arbor area.

Wacker Chemical Corporation is investing in a nearly 14-acre site at 4950 S. State St. in Pittsfield Township. The North American Innovation Center and Regional Headquarters will house 300 employees, including those in its Adrian headquarters and 70 new “highly-paid” employees within the next five years, according to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). Two-thirds of the Adrian employees will remain to continue production of elastomers, silicone fluids and silicone emulsions.

The company is expected to break ground before the end of the year and complete the project by 2022, MEDC spokeswoman Kathleen Achtenberg said.

“We are excited to move forward with our Innovation Center and Regional Headquarters to be located within Michigan,” Wacker CEO David Wilhoit said in a statement. “Our new facility will enable future growth in the state and serve as an important anchor for our operations across North America. This area is one of the nation’s leading communities for R&D. We look forward to networking with, and recruiting from, this highly educated and skilled talent base.”

Chemical company looking at Ann Arbor area to build headquarters

The company sought out the Ann Arbor area to tap into the local talent pool. Business offices will take up more than 70% of the building and about 30% will be dedicated to research and development, according to the site plan. Pittsfield Charter Township offered a 50% property tax abatement to support the project. The site was last sold to Maui Properties LLC for $890,000 in September 2019, property records show.

The company in 2017, the company established a footprint in Ann Arbor with a research and product development center. The new $51-million headquarters project will receive a $1-million