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The need for smart transit-oriented development accelerates

The need for smart transit-oriented development accelerates

by Deborah Johnson Wood
This story originally appeared in Rapid Growth

My Town Wyoming: City considering extending parking rules

My Town Wyoming: City considering extending parking rules

WYOMING, Mich.--   The City of Wyoming is considering extending its odd-even parking rules.

The city council will take up an ordinance amendment that would make the odd-even parking effective Dec. 1 through March 31 each year and during any declared snow emergency.  That’s one month longer than the current ordinance.

If the amendment is adopted during the city council meeting Monday, March 3, the revised ordinance would be declared an emergency ordinance, which would take effect the very next day.

The odd-even parking rules are as follows:

  • Park on the side of the street on which addresses that are odd or even align with the date being odd or even.
  • On a cul-de-sac, parking shall only be on even-numbered calendar days.
  • After midnight, your vehicle must be parked on the correct side of the street for that date.
  • Parked cars will not be ticketed from 7 p.m. to midnight.

My Town Wyoming: I-196 and 44th Street projects backed by city

My Town Wyoming: I-196 and 44th Street projects backed by city

WYOMING, Mich.—Two construction projects on busy Wyoming roads are getting the go-ahead by the city council.

During its regular meeting Feb. 17, the council unanimously approved a resolution supporting a contract with the Michigan Department of Transportation to add new concrete pavement on 44th Street from Hansen Avenue to Division Avenue. City Clerk Heidi Isakson says the city will pay approximately $1.1 million toward the 44th Street project; MDOT will cover the rest of the construction cost.

 A second project to install median cable barriers along I-196 through the City of Wyoming also received the council’s support.  The city’s share of the cost on that project is approximately $5,300.

Dozens of West Michigan Schools awarded field trip grants

Dozens of West Michigan Schools awarded field trip grants

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Nearly three dozen West Michigan schools are getting a financial boost to help students learn outside the traditional classroom.

The Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs recently awarded more than $55,000 grants to 147 schools as part of its Arts & Culture Trek “Bus Grant” program.  Each school received up to $500 to help cover transportation costs for an arts or culture-related field trip through May 31.

 "These grants subsidize field trips across the state and expose thousands of students to arts, science and humanities experiences that enrich classroom learning.  Many of these trips would not have been possible in a year where most schools are continuing to cope with significant budget cuts," says Marianne Dorais, executive director of Michigan Youth Arts.

This year’s recipients include:

  • Comstock STEM Academy (Kalamazoo)
  • Cooper Elementary (Kalamazoo)
  • Kalamazoo C

Ambulance Consortium to include at least six communities

Ambulance Consortium to include at least six communities

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—   The new Ambulance Consortium in Kent County is growing.

Grand Rapids, Grandville, East Grand Rapids, Kentwood, Wyoming and Rockford have already voted to form the consortium.  Plainfield Township is also considering joining.

The Ambulance Consortium would establish across-the-board ambulance service standards for all communities involved, through contracts. East Grand Rapids City Manager Brian Donovan says communities that are part of the consortium will create an oversight group which will make sure all ambulance companies are abiding by contractual standards. By consolidating regulation, each community will save staff time and money.

Kent County communities have been working on the partnership since 2010.  

Officers putting in extra hours to ticket aggressive drivers

Officers putting in extra hours to ticket aggressive drivers

WYOMING, Mich.—From Wyoming to Walker, officers will be on the lookout this week for aggressive drivers breaking the law.

The extra enforcement will take place on U.S. 131 and I-196 in Kent and Ottawa counties through Dec. 13 as part of the Ticketing Aggressive Cars and Trucks (TACT) program.   Officers from six agencies including the Michigan State Police, Kent and Ottawa County sheriff offices and Grand Rapids, Walker and Wyoming police departments are involved.  They will be looking for drivers improperly using lanes, driving carelessly or recklessly, speeding, following other vehicles too closely and failing to yield the right of way.

 Drivers can reduce their risk of being involved in a crash with a large truck by:

Alcohol distributor rolls out greener fleet

Alcohol distributor rolls out greener fleet

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—A beverage distributor’s delivery fleet is getting a little greener.

Great Lakes Wines and Spirits began using its first compressed natural gas trucks in Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor this week.  The two vehicles are 20-feet long and refrigerated.  Fuel for each vehicle is approximately $2.40 per gallon, about $1.40 per gallon less than diesel.  Great Lakes Wines and Spirits says the switch will also cut the company’s greenhouse gas emissions by 14 tons a year.

“These two trucks are a critical step in our effort to increase our efficiency and rein in costs at a time when all businesses are working hard to conserve energy. These trucks can help our company and Michigan pave the way to a stronger future for our economy and for the next generation,” said Syd Ross, co-owner of GLWAS.