Ann Arbor Observer cover
Snow on Broadway
Ann Arbor Weather:
Follow us: facebook twitter RSS feed
Vote buttons

Democratic Deadlock

Two factions-and three wild cards-face off in the August 4 city council primary.
The Back-to-Basics Caucus took control of city council in 2018. With campaigns that focused on curbing development and rebuilding roads, they emerged with seven seats. That left the opposing Activist Coalition with three, plus mayor Christopher Taylor.

Those are the Observer's labels, not theirs. Basics members in particular sometimes assert that they're all independents who happen to occasionally agree on issues.

In a post on his eponymous website, Ann Arborite Sam Firke recently argued that cross-endorsements, donations, and voting patterns all suggest something more unified. He calls the factions "Protectors" and "Strivers."

By whatever name, council has long been divided between a pro-growth coalition that controlled the city almost continuously from 2000 until 2018, and the growing slate of critics who, in Firke's words, see themselves as "protecting [Ann
>> more    
Bookmark and Share
Bivouac's AJ Davidson

What's Next for Downtown?

Shopkeepers talk about finding a path through the pandemic.
What's it like owning a store in downtown Ann Arbor in the summer of Covid-19?

"This is modern-day wartime," says AJ Davidson, president of Bivouac on State Street. "You gotta try new things. If you're not trying to change for the current situation, I don't think you're going to survive."

The clothing and outdoor gear store was requiring customers to wear masks and enforcing social distancing even before Governor Whitmer's latest executive order in July. "I talked to my dad," said Davidson, whose father, Ed, founded Bivouac in 1971. "He said, 'I've never seen anything like this before in my lifetime.'

"We count on Art Fair. It saves the summer. [Without it,] it's a struggle." And with the return to campus uncertain, "we're cutting lots of fall orders."

With social distancing, Bivouac can have no more than forty-two people in the store at a time. They have
>> more    
Bookmark and Share
 

You might also like:

Photo: Any deer
Crime Map
A clickable, zoomable map
Photo: Arriving Home
Huron Valley Harmonizers
An a cappella group that makes it cool to be happy these days.
Jeff Prenevost
Bohmey Beauty Opens
"Ethically-made" products at Kerrytown
Micheline Maynard
Nightspots: Habitat Lounge
Hot Home Market
Working from home and record-low interest rates fuel a boom.
Julie Halpert
Turning Point
As Covid-19 deaths climbed in December, the first vaccines reached frontline workers.
Trilby MacDonald
Aroma Arrives
Fast-casual Indian on W. Liberty
Micheline Maynard
Pizza in Dexter
semi e news