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Posted on Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:03 a.m.

University of Michigan considering plan to close Main Street near Michigan Stadium on game days

By David Jesse


Pedestrians make their way down a closed Main Street prior to the University of Michigan's spring graduation featuring President Barack Obama. The university is considering closing Main Street next to the stadium for all events.

A plan to further protect Michigan Stadium from a potential terrorist attack during a football game could mean completely closing Main Street for five blocks for several hours before and after the game.

That plan, which will be presented to stadium neighbors Wednesday night, would also prohibit cars from turning onto Main Street from Stadium Boulevard during those times and includes closing other streets right around the stadium.

It could be in place as soon as Michigan’s home football games in November, but also could take until next year to be put in place, U-M police spokeswoman Diane Brown said.

“This plan is being made to reduce the potential for vehicle-borne bombs or attacks,” she said, adding police believe the moves will work as a deterrent for anyone looking to attack the site.

The plan comes out of a comprehensive vulnerability assessment conducted by U-M police, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and other local police agencies.

“They had a number of recommendations for us to implement,” Brown said. She said the review also supported recent moves like banning bottles and bags from the stadium.

The plan would:

  • Close Main Street to all traffic from Stadium Boulevard to Pauline Boulevard.
  • Close Keech Street between Main and Greene streets.
  • Limit access to parking permit holders on Green Street from Hoover to Keech streets.
  • Close the westbound right-turn lane on Stadium Boulevard onto Main Street.

“Vehicle access from the neighborhood streets onto the closed area of Main Street would be either prohibited or restricted at police-controlled access points, depending on the street, to accommodate people needing ingress or egress to properties fronting Main Street that have no side-street access,” Jim Kosteva, U-M’s director of community relations, said in an e-mail to stadium neighbors. “The closed portion of these streets will remain available for pedestrian use and emergency vehicle response to the area.”

Mary Rand lives in the neighborhood to the west of the stadium. She said she thinks closing off the area isn’t a bad idea, but added congestion through her neighborhood is going to get worse.

“I think you’re going to see more people going down streets like Edgewood to get off Stadium once they realize they can’t get onto Main Street. It’s just going to be more hassle and more traffic,” she said. “I understand why they are doing it, but wonder about the logistics off it. Will they put officers in the neighborhood to direct traffic?”

Brown said the proposal calls for the parking restrictions to be in place for all home football games, but other events at the stadium would be handled on a case-by-case basis. She said it may be in place for the Big Chill hockey game, but not necessarily for charity runs that end at the stadium. Similar restrictions were in place when President Barack Obama spoke at commencement.

Events at Crisler Arena, which is located next to the stadium, would also be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, including looking at who the featured guest is at an event.

Brown said the university is looking for feedback on the plan at the Wednesday night meeting, which will be held at 7 p.m. at the Junge Family Champions Center.

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David Jesse covers higher education for He can be reached at or at 734-623-2534.



Fri, Oct 15, 2010 : 9:15 a.m.

@Saalberg Prior to September 11th, 2001, when in this Country's history did anyone intentionally fly a large airplane into a huge building full of people? To follow your logic I will conclude prior to this date there is no need to prepare for anything (real or perceived) based on precedent. Are you saying " if it has not happened yet, do not worry about it"...? Terrorists do not always do what we think they are going to. At the same time we cannot plan for every possible contingency. What we CAN do is take steps to reduce our target footprint.


Thu, Oct 14, 2010 : 10:14 p.m.

U-M DPS has the right to do pretty much whatever it wants in the areas adjacent to campus, such as enforcing laws, and likely closing streets.

Michael O

Thu, Oct 14, 2010 : 10:47 a.m.

Mr.Shift-spot on.HA!

Philip Santini

Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 3:49 p.m.

Does anyone-Ed?-know what flight restrictions have been imposed by Homeland Security and/or UM prior to, and after football games?

Ron Granger

Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 3:07 p.m.

While I agree the stadium renovation is buckeye-ugly, I don't think it is ugly enough to inspire attacks.

Ron Granger

Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 3:07 p.m.

1. Many of us run essential errands during the game. 2. The claim of improved security seems like a farce because Stadium will still be open. 3. If the U of M needed more security, they should have implemented it on their own property when they spent hundreds of millions in renovations.

Philip Santini

Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 2:50 p.m.

At least the Titans are upfront about their street closures for games-not claiming it's terrorist related. TENNESSEE TITANS GAME DAY TRAFFIC PLAN For each Tennessee Titans' home game, and other special events at LP Field, Metro Public Works and the Metro Police Department implement a traffic management plan that gives priority to drivers who are planning to park on the stadium grounds, and public transit vehicles transporting spectators to and from the area.


Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 2:49 p.m.

Ridiculous. How about closing the stadium?


Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 2:03 p.m.

When did UM buy Main Street? This isn't for terroism-anyone could walk by with a bomb. It's for greed and better crowd control. It's chaotic enough trying to drive near the stadium on game days. Now people will need to completely circumvent the city in order to get around?


Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 1:04 p.m.

If the CITY would like to change Main St, I would suggest making it one way to M-14 to expedite our visitors out of town faster. It takes far too long for the congestion to clear. Otherwise this seems beyond necessary. Do other large stadiums close a one block radius for safety?


Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 1:01 p.m.

From an inside source this is pretty much a done deal with the city council already lined up to support it. This announcment is just a check in the box to say they engaged the citizens of the city. There is a meeting tonight Wednesday October 13, 2010 from 7:00 to 8:30 pm, at the Junge Family Champions Center, which is located on ground level, east side of Michigan Stadium next to the tunnel entrance.


Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 12:30 p.m.

Who in their right mind would be driving on Main St or Stadium an hour before the game and at least an hour after the game? The last game I went to (UConn), Main was blocked for at least 30 minutes after by people coming out of the Stadium and crossing Main. The same goes with Stadium. Close Main, it won't make any difference to traffic.

Milton Shift

Wed, Oct 13, 2010 : 2:11 a.m.

ABSURD. Funny, they're only out to "help" us when it involves taking away even more liberties. The number of people dying from lack of health care is the same as a 9/11 every month. No hurry on dealing with that one though. The reality is they couldn't care less about us. We should just cancel the football games and replace it with "Cowardly Saturdays", where we hide in our homes far from any tall buildings, yelling at the TV about how "these colors don't run."


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 11:04 p.m.

Four astute comments, from above, pieced together, seem poignant: They've been getting by just fine without a closed street since 1927. When the geniuses doing that Stadium addition eliminated virtually all the sidewalk on the east side of Main, they obviously anticipated this as an eventual solution. After 9/11, didn't our wonderful politicians tell us not to allow the "terrorists" to change the way we live or they will have won. Since 9-11, terrorism has become a convenient, all-purpose justification when a better public explanation for taking a certain action may not exist. It's quite useful for shutting up potential grassroots opposition before it can even organize. Shall we give up the streets? Let us hope not.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:33 p.m.

David Brandon is on top of this. Let the birkenstock crowd moan. The University was here long before all of us. Plus, these same folks probably park cars on their yards every football Saturday. CLOSE MAIN STREET ON GAMEDAY!

Kevin McGuinness

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:20 p.m.

Common on this is easy -- let's completely end the terrorist treats and cancel all the football games.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:51 p.m.

Ann Arbor Dot Com has two renowned and respected law enforcement bloggers, Richard Kinsey (retired AAPD) and Agent Greg Stejskal (retired FBI) who should be consulted and interviewed about this matter! I don't think the security guards at the football stadium should be making these sort of decisions that will effect all of us!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:45 p.m.

I disagree that nobody drives on Main Street during the game. I'm a townie and I don't attend the games. I have driven down Main Street during games. Of course I know enough to not do it anytime after the third quarter and I also stay away during half time. I have driven down the street just before half time and I saw vendors chatting and setting up "shop." Of course there are other routes, but unless there is proof of the importance for security and acceptance by a wider "audience" the city street maintained by our property taxes should remain open to the public.

Kai Petainen

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:38 p.m.

security/terrorism.... this is a 'what if' scenario. i'm all in favor of increased security... it makes me feel safer, and i presume it keeps me safer as well. i assume they know some intelligence that leads them to believe what they believe and i'll trust it. but.... this deals with a 'what if' scenario. and personally, i have no problems if we talk about 'what if' scenarios, but others do. or do they only like talking about the 'what if' when it suits them? earlier this year, i spent some time talking to directors and such who deal with emergency matters in the ann arbor area. i tried speaking about the Huron River spill, about some of the theoretical possibilities of how that spill may have occurred, or where it came from. after all, to me, if an AAFD report states 'phosphoric acid', then i'm concerned about the river and the security of that river, drinking water, and the health/environment impacts. When I tried talking about 'what if scenarios', the officials bluntly told me that i was grasping at straws and that they don't deal/listen to 'what if scenarios'. case was closed, no cause was found and the river had been polluted with petroleum (and with some statistical probability -- phosphoric acid) but the point (with relation to the current topic)... was that they were unwilling to listen to the 'what if this happened' argument and investigate some of those thoughts... but now some are trying to use 'what if' scenarios to make their point in this case. 'what if' cannot be used for investigating past events, but 'what if' can be used to scare people into developing new stuff? sure... terrorism is a much more serious matter -- but, when something has spilled into a major regional water source -- that is a serious matter as well, and in some other states it would be considered a serious security matter.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:35 p.m.

@Carolyn, Terrorism is the modern day boogie man. Boo!

David Briegel

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8 p.m.

Carolyn, most people don't consider the plan as presented to be reasonable at all.

Kai Petainen

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:51 p.m.

if security is the concern and the reason to do this... then... are the glass windows bulletproof? i would hope/presume that when the building was built that there were security measures put in place. also, during the last game, i noticed some stuff flying around the stadium -- is it not a no fly zone?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:36 p.m.

Don't take us for fools. The crowd management during game day is overwhelming and would be made easier if cars were not part of the equation. Why do we need to insert scare tactics about terrorism to get the support of the townies to agree to a reasonable solution to the situation.

Kai Petainen

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:30 p.m.

hmmm... i'm not sure what to think about this issue. i think i can see the pros and the cons. sounds like it should be debated. but... regarding UofM owning the street.... don't they own Huron River already too? so... take a river, take a street... no big deal? (after all when spills happen, the DNR, EPA and City Police don't investigate)


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:06 p.m.

That sounds like a fine plan -as long as the U builds a new route around the stadium for both Main and Stadium and builds some new bridges winle they are at it. If they want to keep encroaching, then they need to provide some better remedies. Just this afternoon passing through town, I was thinking how much the U appears to encroach on the streets and sidewalks with every new building they construct. It doesn't look like they give a care about appropriate setback distances or their impact on pedestrian and vehicular traffic. It's all about them taking and using what they want. As a side note, MSU beats UM big-time when it comes to game-day traffic management, too. They have a huge commuter lot a mile or so from the stadium where you can park for FREE. You can either walk to the stadium or take the shuttle busses that run to the stadium all day long. Last year, the bus ticket cost only $3 for a round trip. Easy access, few traffic problems, pretty campus.

David Briegel

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:01 p.m.

wow, it took over a hundred posts but finally the citizens are making sense. So many ideas. An elevated Main St from the top of the hill to Stadium Blvd with pedestrian traffic underneath. A gate at the end of Berkley like the old days. You Remember? Thru traffic would not pass through the neighborhoods. Pedestrians would even be safe! Vendors and entertainment/festival. More events for the Stadium like hockey, soccer, music (Bob Seger?) At least something for the citizens and Mich could have their Colliseum for their Gladiators! Dan, Poor planning indeed. Why should they give a damn? Margie, you should be in charge!!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7 p.m.

I wonder if this so-called security plan for Ann Arbor is available for perusal, or if it is privileged information. If this keeps up, then we will be corraled into ever smaller spheres in which to live our lives. If, everytime the 'Homeland Security' flag is waved, we must bow and scrape before it, then we are a pitiful people indeed. After this road closure, are we to presume that all is well, and that no further measures will be necessary to protect the local populace from terrorists? Or, will there be further, incremental infringements? I'm all for being proactive when appropriate, but this smacks of giving the appearance of added security, while doing nothing of the sort. If I were an reporter, I'd be FOIA'ing the heck out of this alleged security plan. What else is in store for the citizens of our town? As for the town vs gown thing, this tug-of-war has been going on practically forever. I wonder if the citizens of Athens were not amused when Sophocles took up residence in the main square, or whatever it was called back then. Darned teacher and his students are taking up valuable market space again. Maybe we should close off the square to donkey carts during his speeches.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:56 p.m.

If there's a poll, vote against this proposal.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:40 p.m.

When will City Council pass a resolution about this?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:13 p.m.

WELL, WELL it's no longer hidden..the University of Michigan runs the city of Ann Arbor. They not only have the power to buy whatever property in the city and destroy its tax base, turn multiple properties into parking lots, build a Soccer Stadium with no limits on its noise levels, put lights at their behemoth of a football stadium, but NOW they can now CLOSE A CITY STREET! Once again the rulers of Ann Arbor are determining what the City of Ann Arbor must do even though the city owns the roads. This arrogance from the UM rulers shows you how much power the university wields despite the fact they have diminished the tax-base of this city severely resulting in millions of dollars lost for the police, firefighters, parks, schools and people of Ann Arbor. They could care less about the people who live on the cross streets. The people of Ann Arbor is merely an itch that can be bought off with a fancy Stadium, needless custom-made street barriers, a $6 million dollars football coach and shiny uniforms while they turn this city into a massive parking lot to accomodate their people who work in the former buildings that use to be the homes/businesses of former neighbors who paid taxes. Take your blinders off and take a look at all the buildings the UM own within our neighborhoods! They are turning neighorhoods into their personal campus. Don't forget they also thank you by increasing the tuition for the students of Michigan while crying to the State of Michigan that they need more money. RISE UP ANN ARBOR AND GET RID OF THE PEOPLE WHO ARE SUPPOSE TO REPRESENT THIS CITY BUT KEEP APPROVING EVERYTHING UM RULERS WANT. Honor the University & student but don't let them destroy our city!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:05 p.m.

When the addition was being built, I wondered why they University didn't put a tunnel under the current Main Street and allow traffic to flow during the game and ensure the safety of the public by creating a plaza where the current Main Street is located. It would eliminate the need for the traffic cop on the corner, increase the flow of spectators into the stadium and not impact residents who want to get to or from Main Street and it would actualy reduce the traffic that goes through the neighborhoods before the game because they would no longer have to work around the stadium traffic. The University has the funds to do this as well as fix Stadium Bridge. It seems to me it is time for the University to step up and improve the safety of the access to the stadium without raising the taxes of the community in the process.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 5:51 p.m.

TEMPORARY BASIS ONLY! The University's poor planning has caused this problem. They should be made to reconfigure the approaches to the stadium to allow for crowd access, control, and safety. They have closed too mmny streets in town already due to their lack of foresight and/or "I don't give a darn" attitude to the city's needs. djm


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 5:37 p.m.

Re: Ron the Townee. I too am a Townee. I too live near the football stadium. I remember when the Ann Arbor Police handled the traffic flow, cars & pedestrians with ease. I remember when football fans would bring peppermint schnapps to snip while watching the game! I remember when fans would leave the stadium during half time and return for the second half. All was good & fun!! There were over 100,000 fans attending then too. WHAT HAPPENED? If UofM is so concerned about security, then they should close Kipke Dr, to the railroad tracks, to parking, along with a portion of Golf & Outing & Pioneer High. What about the air space above the stadium? The air space is huge!! Because this new security plan does not include closing Kipke Drive to the railroad tracks, I am suspicious about their intentions.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 4:19 p.m.

The university also needs to close the parking areas to the north and east of the Stadium. I hate to think what a motorhome, or even a van, loaded with an Oklahoma City style bomb would do. What seems to be not understood is that IF terrorists, who are willing to die, want to bomb something there is little that can be done, without foreknowledge, to stop them.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 4:04 p.m.

As others have mentioned, seeing how close the stadium addition was to Main St, it is no surprise that the U of M planned to take over Main. It is a surprise they are going to do it in the name of Homeland Security. Fine, give them Main Street from Pauline to Stadium. Then let's give them Stadium Blvd. from Main to White Street. In the name of safety and National Security they need to fix their bridge!!!!!!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 4:03 p.m.

As a retired reporter, my first reaction to this story was much the same as it is to most pieces published in It is bad journalism, clumsily written and poorly edited. On reflection, it dawned on me that actually it is a profoundly perceptive piece of reportage. City opinions? They don't matter. Neighbor opinions? They matter even less. The University struts through city life in Ann Arbor like a drunken gringo with a pocketful of currency in a Mexican bordello. Sometimes the depth of the institution's arrogance is breathtaking, but in my time it has never been misplaced. U-M acts as it does based on experience; it may lose at the stadium, but it always gains the day versus the city and the people of Ann Arbor.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 3:37 p.m.

Fundamentally, I don't have a strong opinion about this - I try to avoid downtown driving on game days BUT this better not go into effect before the Stadium construction is completed.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 3:30 p.m.

Main Street is already effectively closed in these blocks on game days anyway. With the Stadium now practically hanging over Main Street, this makes sense. BUT, why is there no dialog on the better Main Street closure: either permanently, or on weekends, between Huron and William. Has no one been to Pearl Street in Boulder? Virtually the same situation as Main Street, Pearl is closed (a pedestrian mall) 100% of the time, and is a major attraction. Traffic easily routes around Pearl (Main) on Walnut (Ashley) and Spruce (Fourth Ave.) The loss of a few parking spots on Main would be overshadowed by the huge attraction that would result.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 3:07 p.m.

I am not convinced that Main St needs to be closed for security reasons but I think it's a good idea -- you could set up vending and even live entertainment in advance of the late aftn and evening games that are coming once the lights are installed. But I also believe that Main St downtown should be pedestrian only -- it has worked very well in Boston and Burlington, VT.

David Briegel

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:44 p.m.

Before this recent addition I commented that it was simply too many people in too small a space. Now it is even more obvious. The University continues to build on every square inch of land in this area with no regard to parking and crowding issues. Now they want the city to help alleviate the problems they have created. Gee. I don't think the city should allow any further disruptions by the University until the U makes a serious effort to address these issues within their own territory and with their own funds.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:43 p.m.

A compromise for pedestrian safety could be closing the two north-bound lanes (beginning at Stadium Blvd) on game-day. This would allow traffic from town to continue with right turns to the neighborhoods or thru Stadium Blvd to Pioneer. Neighbors could also safely exit to southbound Main St towards Stadium, I94, etc. Pedestrians would then only have to navigate one-way traffic and would have two full lanes of walkway when heading south towards the intersection of Main/Stadium. The terrorist thing is garbage.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:38 p.m.

Totally closed may not be the answer. There are two lanes each way. For 2 hours before game time and I hour after just close the two east side lanes and make the west two open for both ways. You only have to go a few blocks past the stadium. A lot of people use taxi service to and from and an open lane is needed to keep the cost down.

Seasoned Cit

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:30 p.m.

Exactly what terrorists want. Disrupt the every day life of folks. Let's put the games on pay-for-view and not have anyone at the games. People would be safer and the ruin of the new stadium would not be at risk. The folks who just paid outrageous dollars for private boxes will be unhappy but we need to keep them safe since they are the "wealthy" that can afford it as well as pay even more taxes. The U wll loss $ from not bringing able to sell $.40 bottles of water for $4.00....but they can cover that by raising tuition as usual.

Go Blue

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:25 p.m.

Oh baloney - what a pile. UM needs to back off and quit trying to take over the city and do whatever at their slightest whim. And the city needs to quit rolling over to his majesty UM. If the homeowners are happy making money off parking, then let them be and UM needs to quit with the greedy attitude. Every time you turn around, UM wants to close yet another street - irregardless of what the impact on the neighborhood and homeowners. Look at Monroe and there are other streets as well. Its take, take, take and no compensation to the city, in a city where the homeowners pay higher and higher taxes for less and less. Enough already.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:19 p.m.

Paranoia will destroy ya. The University must have some other reason and is just using the terrorism card. To where are you going to divert the traffic.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:19 p.m.

Yes, Ann Arbor "owns" the streets, however the U of M "owns" the city of Ann Arbor, and it's mayor and most of the council. Whatever the U of M wants, the U of M gets. I figured that when the U of M banned unopened water bottles, and then charges $4.00 for a bottle inside, that was to keep us "safe". By the way, has anyone seen the left-overs on the "parking lot" at the school across the street. It was suppose to be "illegal" to have booze on the school grounds. Saturday there were "cops" watching the game on the giant screen with lots of folks who were drinking and even smoking pot. I wonder how much booze makes it way into the new, expanded area of the stadium in the suites.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2:06 p.m.

After 9/11, didn't our wonderful politicians tell us not to allow the "terrorists" to change the way we live or they will have won. George Bush told us to "go shopping." It is our government that is the changing the way we live. They are illegally wire tapping U.S. citizen, imprisoning without a trial, x-ray scanning us with naked full body scanners at airports, using mobile vans to scan our houses and cars, surveillance cameras everywhere, illegal check points on highways, spying on peace activists, Obama authorizing the assassination of U.S. citizens without a trial, etc. Now U of M wants to close off Main St. I guess the "terrorists" have won.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 2 p.m.

So again, yes townies can certainly avoid the area on game days, UNLESS you live there ot in one of the major thoroughfares then too GD bad, shut up and let the city and U of M make their money and let the drunken revelers enjoy the game. Got egalitarian, how democratic.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 1:39 p.m.

Closing down streets is really only a symptom of a bigger safety issue here -- Massive Tailgating with rampant Intoxication states actually is the bigger safety issue at hand. Thousands of people consuming Alcohol starting very early in the AM (I know not all, but obviously the smaller # Of) and thousand of vehicles crammed into small areas i.e. the golf course and Pioneer lots IS The SAFETY ISSUE which needs to be addressed!!

Michael O

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 1:37 p.m.

I was thinking, when I first saw just how close the western facade was to main street,"What are they thinking?" Really bad urban planning,and driving north on main before or after a game is proof,as you have to be super dilligent not to hit or graze altered people....think the horse is out of the barn already on this one.Time for the U to start paying some kind of tax to the city for services.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 1:28 p.m.

@Andrea Zastrow - Thank you! I just joined. The info on the FB page sounds like the University sent postcards about this to some. Since I didn't receive one, I wonder how many other people in the area didn't. @Elizabeth Nelson - I agree with everything you've written! This expansion seems to happen without any concern for the surrounding infrastructure. @Tru2Blu76, you ask: who living in Ann Arbor doesn't understand what "university town" MEANS? Why would anyone move here or stay here and then proceed to gripe about it? Wow! I had no idea that choosing to live someplace meant I had no right to complain about any of the decisions made there. The infrastructure around the stadium can barely accommodate game day traffic as it is; shutting down a major roadway would only contribute to that problem (and wouldn't, imho, actually address any kind of terror threat - if a terror threat is the problem, why stop at Main? why not also close Stadium, Pauline, and any other street near the stadium?) Someone else mentioned above that on game days, townies know not to drive. While I would love to have the option to simply not drive on game days, sometimes life goes on even when there's a game.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 1:27 p.m.

First, I stay as far away for the Big House on home games as I can, and plan my day and travel route to avoid the traffic. (You know only go near during game.) Second, it is so much safer for the people walking to the stadium. If someone wants to do something to the Stadium, they will find a way, no matter if streets are closed or not. Those people on NUTS anyway. Third the concession stands, Yes the U of M gets a cut of the profit but so do the clubs that are working in them. None are professional and are groups trying to raise funds for worthwhile act ivies, mostly for our youth. I know my family worked those stands for over 5 years to teach our children they had to work for that trip to Germany and Paris. It also is not easy work, and the customers could and were hard to deal with if they had been tailgating a little strong. So take it easy on those kids and the adults also that are working behind those stands. It is one long day.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 12:52 p.m.

The development of 'luxury' suites is causing more and more difficulties for the residents of ann arbor. U of M is finally throwing off any facade of being egalitarian and showing itself to be an elitist university. The luxury suites are a monumental testament to this. Now they wish to close Main St. for 'security reasons'? That's a thinly veiled lie. At the bottom of this plan is nothing more than a greedy grab for more money and I am betting that city council is in on it as well. "This is a great plan, everybody will make money off of it!" Bull-Pucky!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 12:31 p.m.

I, personally, would like to know just how the UofM has the right and/or power to make this decision? Does the university own main st.? Do they have the power to control 'our' streets, without 'our' permission and/or consent? Since when can they decide what streets remain open on public property?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 12:27 p.m.

If UM spent $226M (Wikipedia) on this renovation couldn't they include, in long range planning, to purchase the nearby properties, both business and homeowners, and reroute the road to give the proper buffer zone? I am sure their would be lots of push-back if it was done in a rushed way (people/businesses don't want to move right now) but maybe not with the right quality-of-life compensation to the neighborhood--more park space, higher capacity traffic flow outside their neighborhood, right purchase prices, etc. It might add $10-50 Million to a big project but not cause problems with the people that live here in Ann Arbor. Any future UM projects must include the security issues before being approved.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 12:25 p.m.

this seems reasonable. It is only for a handful of days a year and townies know when something is scheduled to avoid driving in that area anyway.

Pete Warburton

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 12:21 p.m.

It seems that each time The University does something to protect the fans....they make more money! Water bottles are a hazard and they sell us a bottle they purchase for 6 cents at a $3.94 profit. Mr. Martin wanted the city to outlaw parking in yards so The University could provide fee based schuttle service from out lots. The new A.D. wants to close Main Street to make it more difficult and dangerous to access yard parking. The University can then help and protect us by providing a service for a fee! Who will protect us from The University.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 12:16 p.m.

I'm waiting for the outcome of the debate in the Phoenix City Council before I decide whether I am for or against this.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 11:06 a.m.

Wow, people sure do complain about the university a lot on this site. Yeah there are inconveniences, but the culture and academia that the university brings to Ann Arbor plays a huge part in why Ann Arbor is so great. That being said, I live a few blocks from the stadium and could care less if they close down that street. I wouldnt travel on it during a home game anyways.

4 Fingers

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:43 a.m.

Oh, and wait till the night games start to get played next year! People tailgating till midnight, late night traffic jams, no lighted parking....should be fun for the neighbors!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:36 a.m.

I live on the west side of the Stadium. I am not in favor of closing Main Street between Pauline and Stadium Blvd. We already have way to much football traffic going through our west side neighborhood. If the University of Michigan is having a problem with crowd control, I would suggest they open up the area to the east of the football stadium called Kipke Drive and make that area their pedestrian mall. After all they own that property! I am hoping the city of Ann Arbor will listen to the property payers of Ann Arbor, and not close off Main Street.

4 Fingers

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:36 a.m.

Makes perfect sense. You can't get a car down there on gameday anyway,and if you do drivers are constantly slamming on the brakes, stopping and letting people out.

Elizabeth Nelson

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:29 a.m.

I'm with you, earthchick. There are levels of inconvenience that we accept and tolerate by choosing to live here, but there is a point where it goes too far (and it is getting WORSE). I'm a few blocks out from the Stadium itself, so I'm mostly affected by the nuisance of people parking and getting in my way when I try to drive somewhere, but I really feel for those who live that much closer. The expansion of the Stadium is insane-- will it ever end? at what point will they decide that we don't actually need that particular block of Main AT ALL and they can just expand the Stadium twenty MORE feet? It's a monstrosity and, frankly, I'm surprised that more people don't express concerns about it. I don't see the bigger-bigger-bigger impulses ever easing up. Watching that sidewalk disappear blew my mind, they clearly expected that pedestrians could just as easily walk IN the street and a wide sidewalk was unimportant. In what other context do we think of crowds and rationalize, "Oh, don't worry about the sidewalk, they'll just walk in the street"? Closing the road was absolutely the long-term plan all along, as soon as they narrowed that sidewalk so small.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:23 a.m.

I don't see this eliminating much risk from terrorist attacks. Unless you're going to close Stadium Blvd. too, nothing will stop someone from getting an explosive device close to the stadium. It will end up being another hassle for all the people who live off Main St. or park in those neighborhoods.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:19 a.m.

Given the irksome situation and the slim prospects of relief, I find the substantial preponderance of sane comments gratifying. An exception are the posts that vehemently object to mentioning that terrorists exist, or that deny they would be attracted to a soft target with 100,000 closely packed people. I was particularly struck by one post that said that Ann Arbor was immune because it is a bastion of liberalism (presumably viewing Osama bin Laden as a paragon of progressivism). It takes more than closing a street to deter a terrorist attack (and I am not sure what would suffice) but being in denial is not a useful option.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:19 a.m.

@earthchick (or any Allmendinger Park area resident, for that matter): If you live in the Allmendinger Park area, there is an active facebook group ( -- or search for "allmendinger park neighborhood" if the link is busted)and an email group ( that covers the area. (The Berkley street list welcomed all and now is Allmendinger all the time.) There are also some email lists that run through the university. ( and


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:18 a.m.

Hey since no cars rule will protect stadium why not just make no bombs rule. I hope U pay for street rental.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:12 a.m.

gblue asks: People living around the stadium have the right to complain. However, when you moved in to you home/rental did you really not see the football stadium and consider the implications of the 6-8 football Saturdays each fall? Yes, of course I knew I was moving close the stadium, and 355 days of the year it is an absolutely wonderful place to live so, for the most part, I am willing to put up with roughly 8 days of difficult traffic and obnoxious people parking in front of my house (and beside it, since I live on a corner lot). There were certain things I was unprepared for (like people actually having tailgate parties in front of my house, and drunk Spartan fans sitting on the corner across the street and singing their fight song for 30 minutes solid this past Saturday night). But I deal with it. Since I have moved in, the stadium expanded, and of course neighbors had no say in that. Now this proposal, which would definitely affect those of us who live near the stadium. I intend to complain loudly to anyone who will listen. And the "you chose to move near the stadium" response isn't going to be an adequate response.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:11 a.m.

The fact that the University continues in its quest to OWN Ann Arbor--and Ann Arbor itself is OBSESSED with enacting new laws to protect people from themselves as one another- is yet another of the reasons that I'm thrilled I no longer live here.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 10:11 a.m.

The fact that the University continues in its quest to OWN Ann Arbor--and Ann Arbor itself is OBSESSED with enacting new laws to protect people from themselves as one another- is yet another of the reasons that I'm thrilled I no longer live here.

Isabel Smith

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:56 a.m.

Over the years I have witnessed U of M buying, taking(imminent domain), being given...whatever...owning more than enough of Ann Arbor to cut the necessary taxes to keep it the beautiful place I grew to love. Where did it go? Huge buildings hovering over the sidewalks...they don't match the existing architecture...the Stadium is the reincarnation of the Coliseum or Parthenon! When did it become necessary to close streets, build gigantic, very EXPENSIVE buildings, etc. to get a good college experience and education? Mind-boggling, close the streets to cars, police vehicles (camoflagued bomb carrying), many police (we think)...WE really a smart group of people who have chosen to live in Ann Arbor, we don't need this continuous overkill for security reasons...U of M do you want to own Ann Arbor...find a different manner of getting the funding...$4.00 bottles of water will take forever!

Richard C

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:47 a.m.

Like other respondents, I don't think well of this. I suspect that the Stadium addition was designed without this kind of security in mind (but woe to someone bringing in food or drink that might deny a vendor their gouge.) I am also concerned that taking an extreme measure like closing Main St. will serve to maintain an unnecessarily heightened atmosphere of terrorism related fear, justifying continuing erosion of our privacy and other civil rights (such as the PATROIT Act.) And lastly, on a practical matter - the real effect of closing Main St. will be hard to determine so long as the road work on Stadium and the replacement of the Stadium bridges leaves that area a mess. By the time the Stadium bridges are replaced, we (the citizens of Ann Arbor) will be so relieved that we wouldn't notice the aggravation of closing Main St.

Bill Kerans

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:44 a.m.

Pardon me, but doesn't the city of Ann Arbor have any choice in a decision to close a city street? If the University decides to close Main Street, all of us just have to accept it? Perhaps if they didn't keep expanding the stadium there would still be room for people to walk along Main Street and Main Street would still be too far from the stadium to pose a "threat." Besides, will there be a credible security threat until the Wolverines beat Ohio State?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:44 a.m.

It was Benjamin Franklin who said, "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. " not the Historical Review of Pennsylvania.

Jay Allen

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:43 a.m.

As some have said, other stadiums in other towns do close streets for vendors and allow pedestrians the right of way. If for this reason, I can see it. But a terrorist attack? Was a threat made or is this crying wolf?

scooter dog

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:37 a.m.

Well if they paid local property taxes for all the own,I'd say ok,but they don't,so forget it.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:36 a.m.

@Chase I'm going to guess that you are neither trapped or exhiled from your home for most of the day on game days? Am I right? I for one can be so grateful that the golf course makes $80,000 every game day and still be annoyed that I have literally spent an hour in traffic not a 10 minute (slow) walk from my home due to the inconsideration of the actual residents in the traffic management plans.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:31 a.m.

Chase you mite be rite about more offense. But a bit more ( a whole lot more D ) would allow the accomplishments of the 'more offense' to be rewarded at the end of the day. That said you should have been around 25-30 years ago when awesome D's used to bring huge roars from big crowds. Different time different age.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:31 a.m.

If the city can allow the university to make the call to close Main St, then the city should "allow" the university to pay for the repair of the Stadium bridges.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:30 a.m.

1. Of course the stadium would be a prime location for a terrorist attack. Think of the publicity attacking the largest football stadium in the country would garner with the possiblity of 110,000 vitims. Not to mention all the clever headlines with The Big House in them that the reporters would come up with. They are doing the right thing to at consider options. 2. Obviously the streets are owned by the City and not the University. Any plan U of M would implement would need the approval of the City and I am sure the University knows that as they are always doing work around the City. I think the reporter here got a little lazy with the wording. 3. People living around the stadium have the right to complain. However, when you moved in to you home/rental did you really not see the football stadium and consider the implications of the 6-8 football Saturdays each fall?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:19 a.m.

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. " --Historical Review of Pennsylvania. Think about it

Chase Ingersoll

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:16 a.m.

It is interesting watching the culture clash that takes place on fall weekends. But having lived in similar sized communities that would kill to have what Ann Arbor has: the ability to bring in 100's of thousands of affluent spenders for an athletic events and artistic events with an economic impact that is a significant portion of the livelihood of many of their neighbors. I read this as (bigger stadium + more offense = increased attendance = more money being spent) and while so many are complaining about a bad economy, we should be grateful.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:11 a.m.

As if it wasn't tough enough to get around town on home game days ESPECIALLY if you live in or around the high traffic ways. There is no provision or accomodation for those who live there. I have been stuck on several occasions mere blocks from home simply because I am not allowed across a street due to the traffic regulation. NO OFFICER I DON'T WANT TO GO TO THE HIGHWAY. I JUST WANT TO GO HOME! TURN, TURN NOW SIR! As for "security". All this traffic "control" will stop someone from stealing a plane at the Ann Arbor or Willow Run airport (where there is less traffic control anyway) and flying it into the stadium how? From either airport what are the chances for intercepts to be scrambled before the deed is done. An illiterate miscreant in Washington state stole planes all over the country and flew them to a Carribean island for crying out loud. Get real.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:06 a.m.

If this gets rid of the cop at the corner that replaced Officer Brian I'm all for it. She is brutal.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:05 a.m.

Well lets see. What other reason besides dreamed up terrorism attacks could they possibly have? UofM has already maximized revenues inside the stadium by increasing ticket prices, slapping on seat license fees under the guise of some kind of 'donor program', and increased the take at the food stands by banning everything but ones person from being brought inside the walls. About the only two things I can think of that they haven't figured out how to slap a fee on are bathroom usage and travel into and out of the area. I think they have just figured out #2. Block the roads and then FOR A FEE, run shuttle service into the stadium from outlying lots way outside the no drive zone at say $10 per head to start. With the possibility of adding a surcharge for 'Premium Games' (meaning any opponent with a pulse and still breathing). Of course a Super Premium service could be provided (for an additional charge) to those willing to cough up a little extra green for their own private (once we close them down to public travel)roadways for easy and quick in and out of the AA area. As for charging to use the 'pee troughs'.........mite have to go easy on that one and put out an Alumni Survey first to gauge patron response. $$$$$GO BLUE!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 9:02 a.m.

The terrorists are winning!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:59 a.m.

I live in the stadium neighborhood and did not receive the email from Jim Kosteva about the meeting tomorrow night. I'm unhappy that this is the first I've heard about this plan. I'm concerned about what this plan will do to traffic in the nearby neighborhoods, not to mention what it does for those of us who might need to get somewhere other than the game on game day. I've owned my home for seven football seasons now, and I do my best not to venture out into traffic on game day. But sometimes it's unavoidable - my kids have their own sporting events to get to, for one thing - and Stadium, Main, and Pauline are the only ways I have to get out of my neighborhood. I have questions and concerns about this plan, but can't go to the meeting tomorrow night. Given that I didn't receive communication from Kosteva about this, I wonder how many of my neighbors also may have been missed, and I wonder if we will have further opportunity for input.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:57 a.m.

Another example of knee jerk reaction without assessing the possibility of a real threat. Why not shut down all vehicles for 1 mile around the stadium? Or even the entire town? That would make it real safe (unless someone uses the airplane scenario). Kinda of reminds you of all those shoes scanned at the airport. At the least, TSA should put up a sign identifying how many shoes scanned without finding anything.

Rodney Nanney

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:56 a.m.

The former stadium was well back from the street and mostly below grade on the Main Street side. The University chose to expand radically upward and towards Main Street with little or no regard to the potential impacts or security issues. Why should the city residents and businesses bear the cost and even more aggravation of long road closures? Let UofM foot the bill for the security upgrades and extra personnel needed to protect the stadium's exposed western flank!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:52 a.m.

Always Late! I agree with your words... Never asked the residents in the surrounding area of the Stadium!!! 1. you go out how are you going to get back in to your driveway that UofM does not own? 2.How far will you walk to get home? Done all this nice work. never thought about the foot traffic and/or pedestrian. So much luck for us the people of Ann Arbor.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:46 a.m.

"we knew what we were getting into when we moved here" If "what you were getting" is a pushy and arrogant university and a pushover city council, you are correct. They've been getting by just fine without a closed street since 1927. Why can't they manage their own circus without further inconvenience to the people in town who - gasp - don't go to the games?

Elizabeth Nelson

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:38 a.m.

How did we not see this coming from a mile away? When the geniuses doing that Stadium addition eliminated virtually all the sidewalk on the east side of Main, they obviously anticipated this as an eventual solution. This plan could be a potential nightmare for those of us who live nearby, but it's true what others posted: we knew what we were getting into when we moved here. This does seem like one more example of U of M pretending that the town residents don't exist or matter (another example being the gobs of money blown on Stadium expansions, without any concern about how their traffic is helping speed the destruction of a city bridge we use year round).


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:33 a.m.

I presume the "terrorism" angle is a smokescreen, so the U doesn't have to pay for the use of the streets. They can take the street, for "national security" reasons.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:31 a.m.

Nice headline, and nice job of totally not reporting a thing about what the city has to say about it.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:23 a.m.

If the threat of terrorism is so great, we shouldn't be hosting any home games.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:23 a.m.

Is that extra income reported on your tax returns?

Peter Baker

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:19 a.m.

The street is essentially closed off anyways, by pedestrians. I'm all for it, but for pedestrian safety and walkability. Whatever happened to the idea of closing off Main Street downtown on other weekends?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:19 a.m.

"University of Michigan considering plan to close Main Street" How can the University close a street it does not own? Nice writing.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:15 a.m.

@ tdw, actually it sort of depends on what their goal is? I mean if I, as a Terrorist, wanted to draw attention to my caus by killing as many infidels as possible I'd hit NY again. For strategic targets I'd wipe out reserach at all main reserach universities. I guess, I just think more like a terrorist than you do?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:12 a.m.

Given the size of the football crowds, closing off that portion of Main Street on game day and turning it into a plaza space makes sense. Making a comparison to Boston and the Fenway Park neighborhood is reasonable. Driving on that several-block stretch before a game is problematic, anyway. I'll join those who are skeptical over the official motive for this. Since 9-11, terrorism has become a convenient, all-purpose justification when a better public explanation for taking a certain action may not exist. It's quite useful for shutting up potential grassroots opposition before it can even organize. As was the case during the McCarthyite 1950s, paranoia has become integrated into federal and local public policy. The university recently exploited this to get "competing" water bottles banned in its stadium and now utilizes it again to quiet nearby residents who might be inclined to head to city council. Street closure sounds fine, but the official reasoning is awful.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:08 a.m.

If I want to close a few major streets for one of my events, what would it cost me for the permit and police presence?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:03 a.m.

Decent plan. Ridiculously stupid reason for it.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8:01 a.m.

@foxxo You mean when you moved into your rental unit these things were not known to you? These football games are a NEW phenomenon? You seem to be shocked that these football games happen at most 8 times a year. You have many choices in life. One of them is where you RENT a house. Next time you are looking for a rental there are plenty of available units throughout the city. Take a look at one not so close to the stadium. By the way, those of us who have owned property in the area enjoy the extra income parking provides. No person is forced to allow their yard to be used for parking.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 8 a.m.

Main Street...Stadium Boulevard...Keech Street...Pauline Boulevard are CITY OF ANN ARBOR STREETS! They do not belong to the Soviet State of UM! What's next...UM seizing private homes?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:57 a.m.

I'm with forever27: Between the vendors encroaching on the western sidewalk of Main, the Stadium doing the same on the eastern side of the street, and the bikes threading through the crowds trying to buy and sell tickets, it makes sense to close that stretch of Main during games and turn it into a pedestrian mall. Not all the pedestrians are drunk. Not all the drivers are distracted. But there are enough of both specimens that while it may not protect the crowd from terrorism, it will make the event safer for the pedestrians.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:55 a.m.

I'd say we're about 10 IQ points and one degree of paranoia from just building a fortified green zone around downtown Ann Arbor.

David Jesse

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:55 a.m.

The review of the homeland security risks included the Ann Arbor police and the university is working with the city on the plans.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:49 a.m.

I suspect that the UofM Public Safety Dept. has alot of federal money from Homeland Security they have been given to spend. This study is a result of that extra money and extra time on their hands...This proposal is silly at best. As liberal as this community is I can't believe any terrorist would consider attacking anything in this town...except maybe the stadium bridge..wait a minute...I think they already did!

Steve Pepple

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:47 a.m.

A phrase has been corrected in the story. Thank you to the reader who pointed out the error.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:45 a.m.

Scenario: Small plane loaded with explosives takes off from Ann Arbor airport. Flies north for three minutes. Plows into crowded stadium. I'm sure closing Main Street will prevent that, and about a thousand other ways a determined terrorist could come up with.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:33 a.m.

@Jeffery I think you are confusing terrorists with military.Terrorists want to kill as many innocent people as possible there is no such thing as collateral damage to them.A miltary would go after the Nuke Research buildings. Anyways the terrior excuse is a farce If I were a terrorist, a blocked street with thousands of people packed like sardines would'nt be any deterant


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:30 a.m.

Why don't they put the U of M defense out on the street to stop the terrorists? All jokes aside, I agree with others: Call it what it is, don't use fear mongering to push an agenda. We're Ann Arborites -don't insult our intelligence. U of M should make their case for pros and cons of limiting the traffic and be more genuine. Next it's going to be on fox news. Doesn't the city own the streets? PS. With so many planes in the air on game day you'd think they'd start with restricting airspace...


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:27 a.m.

closing the street isn't that big of a deal. It will make the situation safer for all the pedestrians that walk through there anyway. But to shroud this under the veil of terrorism is beyond ridiculous. This is fear mongering. What ever happened to logical thought processes that ended in reasonable conclusions? Not everything that our city/university administrators does has to be in "defense of terrorism".


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:24 a.m.

I agree with Dennis. David at should have questioned how much the U thinks it can do without city approval.

Craig Lounsbury

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:21 a.m.

If this is actually about a potential terrorist attack, which I'm skeptical about where do we stop? What if terrorists loaded an RV with weapons, rocket launchers etc and pretended to be tailgater's at Pioneer? Should we cancel all games when the temperature is below 65 degrees so suicide bombers can't hide their intentions under a coat? What about the Art Fair in July? Its as big an event as a football game.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:18 a.m.

I have to agree with a couple of the other commenters. The city owns the street and not the university. I don't believe the university has the authority to close the street.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:18 a.m.

Paranoia prevails - this is an insane idea! Like A2 has great ingress and egress as it is! To quote Thomas Jefferson "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it."


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:18 a.m.

If the idea is truly and honestly in the name of increased safety, this is one of the dumbest and most foolish plans I've heard. If they want to close main street for pedestrian traffic or vendors, that's fine. Only a fool would try to drive through there during game traffic anyway, so it already might as well be closed. To think of this somehow abating a perceived possible threat, that's just crazy. Are the folks at the University really so naive as to think that not allowing water bottles in the stadium or not allowing people to drive within 5 yards of it are obstacles that couldn't be overcome by someone who really wanted to do some massive damage? Come on. I won't go list the plethora of other avenues that anyone with half a brain could use to circumvent security like this, but it sounds like digging a moat around your house and nailing boards over the door. You will succeed in making it a major pain for any friends or family who want to come in, but any average burglar won't have too hard a time finding a plank to lay over the moat, and breaking in through a back window.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:17 a.m.

Now that I've got the ranting out of my system, my constructive commentary: If the University is worried about security, instead of shutting down streets they should provide cheap park-and-ride service so people can park outside the main/stadium area and avoid snarling traffic and disrupting neighborhoods. Why are all these thousands of people parking on lawns and walking when they could be busing in and staying off the street?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:17 a.m.

"The plan comes out of a comprehensive vulnerability assessment conducted by U-M police, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and other local police agencies." I would have thought the city council would have some input. At least a mention. I remember the city having to be ASKED to allow a lane to be closed for construction. And now the U of M acts like this is their jurisdiction! This is just another attempt by some to change something that does not need fixing.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:12 a.m.

First, I really think that if a terrorist group were to target University of Michigan, they would go after a the Nuclear Research buildings, instead of the Stadium. The Stadium would be considered a soft target and would only result in collateral damage whereas the Nuclear Research buildings would offer far greater bang for the buck (so to speak). Also, if they're REALLY concerned about the Stadium, why did they expand it so much? The only way to "protect" the west side of the stadium is to permanently shutdown Main street (not happening). Also, the area by Chrysler Arena is far easier and a "hiding" approach if you were to ram a car bomb into the stadium. I agree with others, this smacks of traffic woes, not terrorism.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:11 a.m.

As a renter in the area West of the stadium, this sounds like it's just going to make my weekends even more of a nightmare. It's not enough I have to put up with uncouth interlopers parking on my lawn (with the landlord's blessing, of course) and leaving trash everywhere, and my normally pleasant neighborhood full of nice yards where kids play and a porch where I can read with my girlfriend transformed into a vast parking lot jammed with SUVs and fat old people getting drunk in front of plasma TVs blaring in the yards. It's not bad enough my choices are to stay home all day or be banished until 3 hours AFTER the game ends by traffic, or that I have to scramble to find a parking space blocks away from my home the night before the game because, for some reason, the city won't allow residents to park on the street during game day. This is completely unnecessary and will only make the gameday "experience" more horrible and longer lasting.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7:03 a.m.

Very reasonable - and forget about a possible terrorist attack (so not going to happen), this plan will keep hundreds of pedestrians safe. There are always people in cars trying to plow through the fans just before and after game time. Park and walk with the rest of us!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 7 a.m.

Well, it is not hard to figure out that a 100,00 plus people in a stadium are a target. I would like to know why the Univeristy did not do any type of analysis before hand to assess the threat. If there was a substanital threat then why did it not design and build the new stadium with some type of blast walls/barrier plan to protect spectators against this newly determined threat? Of, that's right, it would of cost the University money to do this vice just placing the burden and responsiblity now on the city.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:54 a.m.

Real Simple: Have the University pay to fix the Stadium bridge and they can close any street they want. Can you imagine what Pauline will be like? Dumping all those cars onto a residential street going.....where would they go? What a mess the neighborhoods would be. They should close down main street through downtown as well. That would be a great experience on game day. You could have free tours of the new city hall and the new Parking Pit on Fifth.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:53 a.m.

If they were really concerned with "terrorism", they'd ban water bottles from being brought into the stadium. Fan based water bottles are proven method of inflicting mass destruction. Oh wait, they already did that? I guess they'd better cancel all home games...for safety, of course!


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:52 a.m.

A terrorist attack? Really, sounds like some people are just a wee bit paranoid. That said, I can see closing Main street to make it safer for the pedestrians crossing there.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:47 a.m.

I agree with the sentiment expressed by PSJ-the University does not have the authority to close a city street. Come on headline editor-reword this.

Paul Taylor

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:43 a.m.

I wonder what, if any, impact this will have on the deteriorating bridge over State Street. Will people bypassing Main St from the West side of town end up heading over the bridge in order to get downtown via State? Will emergency vehicles need to fight the reduced-lane traffic on the bridge in order to respond to emergencies? I hope not, because, as it is, regular traffic gets snarled on that decrepit span.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:40 a.m.

"The University" is considering closing Main St? Last I knew the street was owned by the city of Ann Arbor. If the city allows it, I hope there is a provision for reasonable access to Main St. properties by their owners and parking customers.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:37 a.m.

Very reasonable and well thought out. All you need to look at is Yawkey Way in Boston by Fenway Park - They closed it for traffic on game days and turned it into a great vendor area - secured and clean. I travel that way every Saturday morning - I can go a different way the 6 or 7 times a year. Well done Ann Arbor - great idea. And by the way - we need to stay palert to be safe.

Urban Sombrero

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:32 a.m.

Have there been actual threats? An actual reason for this? If not, it seems silly and overly paranoid.

Jon Saalberg

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:20 a.m.

Other than "Black Sunday", which had a fictional attack, could anyone please enlighten me as to when an attack has occurred at any sports venue in the United States?Seems like fear and terrorism win when these kinds of security measures are the norm in every state, for numerous sites that are absurdly unlikely to be attacked.

Chip Reed

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:19 a.m.

Punk week=bad. Football=good. Why don't they have all the games away, and think of something better to do with the stadium?


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 6:07 a.m.

Right, so a terrorist is going to heed roadblocks. Every year the university and the police have added something to make game day safer. If they are so concerned about public safety why don't they enforce the open alcohol laws. Hint police: Those blue and red plastic cups people are using on Pioneer property are filled with alcohol.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 5:52 a.m.

C'mon, admit the real reason. They built the stadium addition far too close to Main Street and there's nowhere near enough sidewalk space on gameday.

Paul Taylor

Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 5:50 a.m.

It's the University's town... We only live in it.


Tue, Oct 12, 2010 : 5:45 a.m.

Time for a reality check. This ill conceived plan is unneeded, and will accomplish nothing.