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Posted on Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 5:58 a.m.

Expect traffic pattern changes in late August when students move back to Ann Arbor

By Kellie Woodhouse


U-M students move into their dorm in this fall 2012 file photo.

Ann Arbor has just begun to wind down from Art Fair and a summer filled with festivals, but it's winding up for a burst in population, traffic and business.

That's right: In two weeks students are coming back to Ann Arbor for another school year at the University of Michigan.

Say goodbye to actually being able to drive down State Street, say hello to long lines at the State Street coffee shops and do your best not to grumble when the Solo cups and beer pong tables abundantly line the streets of lower Burns Park.

Roughly 28,000 undergraduates and 15,500 graduates will take classes in Ann Arbor this fall and U-M expects 10,500 of them to live on campus. The majority of those students, with the help of their parents, move in during a three-day period beginning Aug. 28.

As students move in to their dorms, the city is changing some traffic patterns near campus. The changes go into effect 6 a.m. August 28 and stop 10 p.m. on August 30.

Here's a synopsis:

  • Thompson - one way southbound from East Jefferson to Packard
  • Madison - one way eastbound from South Division to South State
  • Observatory - one way southbound from East Ann to Geddes
  • East Washington - one way westbound from Fletcher to South State
  • Maynard - from Jefferson to East William - meters bagged
  • East University between Hill and Willard - meters bagged
  • Church Street between Hill and Willard - meters bagged
  • North University Court - meters bagged
  • Oxford - parking reserved for move-in from Hill to Geddes
  • Washington Heights - closed from Observatory to E. Medical Center Drive
  • East Ann - one-way eastbound from Zina Pitcher Place to Observatory

The university has agreed to pay the city $10,450 for occupancy of the public right-of-way during the move-in period. Soliciting in a one-block radius of the move-in site is prohibited.

The City Council approved the traffic pattern changes on Aug. 8.

U-M's Lawyer's Club graduate residence hall is reopening after a $39 million renovation this fall. Undergraduate dorm East Quad will also reopen after a yearlong $116 million renovation.

Crews will begin renovating the 1,180-bed South Quad this fall. The project will take a year and cost $60 million. U-M also wants to proceed as quickly as possible on building a state-of-the art 600-bed graduate student dormitory, which is predicted to cost $185 million.


Kellie Woodhouse covers higher education for Reach her at or 734-623-4602 and follow her on twitter.



Wed, Aug 28, 2013 : 10:20 p.m.

The fun begins

John Turck III

Tue, Aug 20, 2013 : 1:25 p.m.

I would be thrilled if one year Ann Arbor's principal news source took a positive angle to reporting on U-M's move-in days. How about "embracing" instead of "bracing for" our new neighbors. Battle Creek, Bay City, or Bad Axe, et. al. would love to have the traffic congestion and crowds in the stores that the U of M brings with it. The students, faculty, and staff bring cash and credit cards, and create, one of the state's most vibrant economies here. Just as important, they bring energy and hopeful visions of the future, something badly needed by those Ann Arborites who are annoyed by their presence. Welcome, students, parents, siblings, faculty and staff to your new home.

shadow wilson

Tue, Aug 20, 2013 : 3:34 a.m.

I sympathize with reporters. They are continually asked to write non-stories. This is not news folks.Every year around this time students move back or in to town. And every year it all seems to go well. When we had newspapers there were sections i.e. local, national and international and sports. Now we have on line content where news has to be made up. I don't blame this or any other reporter for doing their job.....although I do question whether this in any way is about higher ed.

Kellie Woodhouse

Tue, Aug 20, 2013 : 1:46 p.m.

I think the reader who emailed me to say thanks for the article and that he will definitely take a different route to the hospital this move-in weekend so he doesn't get stuck in traffic like last year would disagree.


Tue, Aug 20, 2013 : 12:26 a.m.

Notice to area residents. You will still be able to shop at the grocery stores during student move-in. Be advised, due to the students shopping, the following categories of food may be in short supply: cold cereal, snack foods such as chips, pretzels, etc., frozen pizza, soda (and beer), pet food (particularly cat), hot dogs and brats, peanut butter, and anything else not requiring much cooking skill. Fruits and vegetables, frozen or fresh, will be plentiful.


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 5:50 p.m.

You can pretty much say good bye to be able to not drive without being challenged by a UM student as well. I really hate driving down there when UM students are in town. They snarl everything. EMU moves in August 31. glad I am not any where near there.


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 3:51 p.m.

stay away from meijer. target, and k mart. this week.

Widow Wadman

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 3:05 p.m.

Thank you for this article. I had been wondering when the move in would begin.

Matt A

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 12:57 p.m.

Kellie, must you paint every single thing that you write related to U-M in a negative light? Everyone will still be able to drive down State St., even with the students back. It will be ok.


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 11:30 p.m.

it will take 15 min. to get from state+n.u. to state+ s.u. they should make state,maynard,thompson etc. one ways like they used to be+traffic could get through campus quickly.

Atticus F.

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 10:11 p.m.

Thanks for sharing your OPPINION, jon wax... I, along with many others appreciate the update on the traffic conditions, as well as the reminder. I'm now more prepared to avoid the traffic mess.

Jon Wax

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 9:04 p.m.

it's traffic. it comes it goes. that's why they call it "traffic" not sure it merits a story. the worst case real world scenario with no warning merits a "what th-... oh yeah, damn" right turn. not really the end of the world. Peace Wax


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 6:15 p.m.

I'm sorry, this story is biased? Thanks Kellie! Move in week can be stressful for sure!


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 5:52 p.m.

A lot more cons then pros I must say. That is why I do not live any where near Ann Arbor.

Kellie Woodhouse

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 3:35 p.m.

I wouldn't take it too seriously. I was just trying to add a little flavor to the story. Everyone knows the return of the students comes with a lot of pros and a few cons. In our coverage of U-M I work very hard to be unbiased.

Matt A

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 1:38 p.m.

I'm sorry. You're right. I was looking for some unbiased reporting and forgot that is a glorified blog.

Homeland Conspiracy

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 1:29 p.m.

Hire on Matt & write some bright shiny stories about the great & powerful UofM


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 12:48 p.m.

As someone who works in Ann Arbor with no ties to UM, this is very helpful, thank you! I probably wouldn't have known about the traffic changes if it weren't for this article.


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 12:46 p.m.

"Soliciting in a one-block radius of the move-in sight is prohibited." Shouldn't 'site' be used instead of 'sight'?

Jon Wax

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 9:01 p.m.

"the workflow of online publication is drastically different, most notably faster, than the old print format allowing more opportunity for mistakes to slip though; " seriously folks... with all due respect, exchange "online publication" and "old print format" with basically EVERYTHING in the commercial and professional arenas and this is why the country is doomed. i don't remember the "old print format" having access to "spell checker". well, they did. but they called it "the editor". Peace Wax

Kyle Mattson

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 3:13 p.m.

Hi Richard, as Kelly noted, our reporters do take any typos seriously. With that said, mistakes do happen and the workflow of online publication is drastically different, most notably faster, than the old print format allowing more opportunity for mistakes to slip though; however, that is not an excuse for any errors. We'll continue to work to improve in this area and please, if you ever happen to catch a mistake please feel free to email the reporter and they'll correct it as soon as they can. Thanks!


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 2:20 p.m.

A professional news organization should be able to post stories without errors. Newspapers very rarely had errors because they had people checking their work and proofreaders checking a story before it went to press. Seems like the writers of don't even read what they have written. Sloppy, unprofessional.

Kellie Woodhouse

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 2:19 p.m.

Sooze, that would be a lot of typos. Let me apologize for the mistake. I was needlessly rushing when I wrote this piece, and I also think it's unfortunate when errors are in the articles here- whether they are typos or factual.

Homeland Conspiracy

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 1:27 p.m.

Did you not understand what was said? If so then so what if it's misspelled the message is what counts.


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 12:51 p.m.

Misspellings online are more frequent than correct spelings.


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 11:35 a.m.

Kellie- Is there any information on AAATA Bus rout detours for these locations?

Kellie Woodhouse

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 3:04 p.m.

I am trying to get this information ASAP.


Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 12:01 p.m.

Ditto for this reader.