In the News
Several cases of Covid B.1.1.7. on campus prompts U-M to issue a stay-at-home order, days after the athletics department shuts down for two weeks. The decisions were made by the university based on the recommendation of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services after several people linked to the university tested positive for the highly-contagious strain of the virus. MLive
Ann Arbor is seeing the lowest crime rates in decades. Ann Arbor police chief Michael Cox says that because of the pandemic, the “opportunity just went away” for many common crimes. County sheriff Jerry Clayton also attributes crime reduction to programs diverting offenders away from prison and towards social services. Both men want to work with new county prosecutor Eli Savit to keep the numbers trending downwards, but not at the expense of public safety. The Observer’s James Leonard has our story.
Toyota Research Institute will collaborate with U-M on a major artificial intelligence initiative. The research will incorporate traditionally underrepresented voices in the tech industry to develop new applications for AI, including automated driving, robotics, and machine assisted cognition. U-M is one of sixteen universities that will partner in the five-year, $75 million project.
More than 20 “smart intersections” will come to the City of Ann Arbor. These intersections will be capable of collecting and sending information to connected cars in real time. U-M was awarded $9.95 million for the effort by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration. An additional $10 million was contributed toward the project from in-kind funding from corporate partners. Click on Detroit
Jonathan Overpeck, climate professor at U-M, debuts “In This Climate” newsletter on Click on Detroit. How is climate change felt in Michigan? More precipitation and flooding; warmer climate leading to more algal blooms.
Ann Arbor sustainability forums begin Thursday. Discussions will be held monthly for the next five months and will focus on food, green infrastructure, circular economy, waste reduction, and energy production. Each forum relates to the city’s A2ZERO sustainability framework to get to carbon neutrality by 2030. Click on Detroit. The next forum is on February 24.
Get your skate on at Veteran’s Memorial Park and Buhr Park! Both rinks reopened last week for instruction and limited free skate hours. Instructional programs cost $55 and run through March 6, and equipment is included. Click here to register for lessons and free skating times.
Trevor Zhou is making a feature film about Ann Arbor, and he wants your stories. Zhou, an L.A. actor and filmmaker who immigrated with his family from China as a young child, will be “exploring themes of growing up poor, racial identity, and privilege” and his invitation to share related stories kicked off an eye-opening conversation on Reddit. Follow the film’s progress on Facebook.
Restaurants can open February 1. Restaurants and bars will be allowed to reopen at 25 percent capacity and must close by 10 p.m. Contact information must be collected from diners for contact tracing purposes.