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151 Martin, P.O. Box 3001
Birmingham, MI 48012
Welcome to the June 2017 edition of the Around Town e-Newsletter from the City of Birmingham. We hope you enjoy this e-newsletter and forward it along to others who may be interested in the City of Birmingham!
Inside City Hall with Birmingham City Manager, Joe Valentine
|Inside City Hall June Edition
New Parking Widget Gives Users Real Time Parking Availability
With new parking technology in place at parking structures in Birmingham, the city launched a new parking widget on its website which tells drivers the number of available spaces at each parking structure. Now, visitors can go to the city website at www.bhamgov.org or use the mobile-enabled feature on their smart phones to click on the green and white parking logo at the top right corner of the screen. In seconds, drivers gain easy access to current parking space availability throughout the city's parking structures. With one click, users can see not only how many spaces are available at each location, but they can then review maps of the parking locations and get directions to them. "This new technology at the structures allows us to provide better service offerings for parking in the City" stated Birmingham City Manager Joe Valentine.
The parking widget is just one of the many upgrades made available by the new parking technology that has been installed in the last few months as a cost and time -saving measure approved by the City Commission in early 2017. The ticketless system, which is becoming a new industry standard, requires drivers to use either a debit/credit card or a pre-paid "IN" card to pay for parking. The "IN" card can be purchased for $10, then loaded with amounts of $25, $50, $100 or $200, or with a zero balance for the in and out parker typically under 2 hours. The new system does not accept cash, and does not require use of a ticket, reducing the occurrences of backups.
More enhancements coming soon include new signs on the outside of each structure which display the real time number of spaces still available similar to the website. With the parking widget added to the home page, all drivers can access the information before coming into Birmingham.
For more information regarding these enhancements, contact
or call 248-540-9690.
New Smart Meters Coming Soon in Birmingham
INTRODUCING THE CIVICSMART LIBERTY SMART METER!
The installation of 1,262 credit card enabled "smart" parking meters began on May 30, 2017. All parking meters located in the City of Birmingham will offer payment by credit card as an option upon completion of the installation of the new parking meters. The existing parking meter housing and poles will remain intact. The existing coin only parking meter mechanisms will be replaced with the new "smart" meters and vehicle detection sensors will be installed at every meter space.
The new parking meters will still have a coin slot for payment using nickels, dimes or quarters.
If you are "tech savvy" and excited about the ability to pay by credit card - then you will be thrilled to learn that the City of Birmingham will be absorbing the processing costs associated with use of credit cards. Parking rates will be the same regardless of payment type - coin or credit card. The new meters will accept Visa, MasterCard, and Discover.
Prefer to pay using Parkmobile? Another great option! The new Liberty meters will reflect Parkmobile payments ON THE METER and on your mobile phone.
Also, the new vehicle detection sensors will allow parking patrons to utilize mobile phones, computers or vehicle apps to locate convenient parking close to Birmingham destinations for business, shopping, dining or recreation.
Parking enforcement personnel, police department staff and CivicSmart representatives will be available to assist parking patrons and the public regarding use of the new equipment. As the project continues, updated installation schedules will be posted on
It is anticipated that the installation of the new parking meters will be complete by June 30, 2017.
Parking Structure Utilization
Last year the Advisory Parking Committee monitored demand throughout the City's parking system and found that parking structures were filling to capacity more than what is desirable, making it difficult for visitors attempting to find a place to park during the peak hours of the day (typically noon to 2 PM). Since that time, adjustments to the operation have been implemented that are helping:
* Monthly permits authorized for sale have been reduced in the Park St. and N. Old Woodward Ave. Structures.
* Rooftop valet services have been operating on Level 5 of the N. Old Woodward Parking Structure as needed. In addition, similar services are now authorized and ready to be implemented if needed at three of the four remaining parking structures.
* The daily rate has been increased to $2 per hour up to $10 maximum, following the offer to allow free parking for the first two hours (implemented July 1, 2016).
While there are some days when parking structures are reaching capacity, it is not happening with the frequency seen during the first half of 2016. Out of more than 1,000 opportunities in a month for structures to reach capacity, the actual number is slightly over 10 per month during the months of January and March. During February and April, the instances have been almost nonexistent. In most cases, rooftop valet allowed the structures to remain open during full capacity.
Family Friendly Entertainment in Birmingham Parks
Enjoy live concerts in Shain Park this summer during the In the Park Summer Concert series. The picturesque setting offers a perfect opportunity to kick off your shoes, relax on a blanket or lawn chair and enjoy the show. Brand new this year, enjoy a special Fourth of July concert, and afternoon concerts on July 12 and August 2 from 12 p.m. - 2 p.m. Head to Shain Park on your lunch break and enjoy! Upcoming June and July concerts are as follows:
Friday, June 16, 2017 - Birmingham Bloomfield Community Coalition Youth Action Board's Teen Summer Concert, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, June 21, 2017 - Steve Acho (Pop/Rock), 7 p.m.
Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - Sinjon Smith (Country), 7 p.m.
Tuesday, July 4, 2017 - ***Special Fourth of July Concert by the Jazz Ambassadors of The U.S. Army Field Band*** 7 p.m.
Wednesday, July 5, 2017 - Weekend Come Back (Pop, Rock, Country, Funk & Motown), 7 p.m.
Wednesday, July 12, 2017 - Brand New afternoon concert by Gia Warner and Bobby Lewis (Rock/Classical), 12 p.m. - 2 p.m.
Wednesday, July 12, 2017 - Magic Bus (Psychedelic Music, 60's & 70's), 7 p.m.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017 - Toppermost Beatle Tribute (Beatles), 7 p.m.
Wednesday, July 26, 2017 - Elvis Tribute Artist, Darrin Hagel, 7 p.m.
Movies under the Stars in Booth Park
Find a cozy spot on the grassy hills of Booth Park and enjoy family-friendly movies this summer. The Birmingham Shopping District's popular Movie Night events offer pre-show entertainment at 7:30 p.m. followed by a movie at dusk. Upcoming events are as follows:
Friday, June 23 - Featured presentation: Secret Life of Pets
Friday, July 14
- Featured presentation: Finding Dory
Friday, August 11
- Featured presentation: Ghostbusters (Original from 1984)
Head to Booth Park (located on the west side of North Old Woodward, just north of Harmon Street) and enjoy movies under the stars! Find out more at
Learn about City Commission and Library Board Election
In November of every odd-numbered year Birmingham voters are asked to elect members to the City Commission and to the Library Board. On November 7, 2017 the ballot will contain races for three (3) City Commission members and three (3) Library Board members.
Voters can quickly and easily confirm their voter registration and find out the location of their voting precinct by visiting
. New residents and residents who have recently changed addresses may register to vote or update their registrations by
visiting any Secretary of State branch office or the City Clerk's office during regular business hours.
Online registration is also available at
. Voters registering for the first time in Michigan must appear in person to vote in the first election in which they wish to participate. This requirement does not apply if you: (1) personally hand deliver a registration form to the county clerk or city clerk's office instead of mailing the form, (2) are 60 years of age or older, (3) are disabled, or (4) are eligible to vote under the federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.
FILING FOR OFFICE
The deadline to file petitions to become a candidate for City Commission or Library Board is 4:00 PM on July 25, 2017. Petitions forms can be obtained at the City Clerk's Office, Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM.
The City Charter of the City of Birmingham states: "No person shall be eligible to the office of City Commission or Library Board who shall not be an elector in the City and who has not been a resident of the City for at least one (1) year prior to his election."
If you have further questions regarding the procedure to run for office or to register to vote, contact the City Clerk's Office at 248.530.1880 or visit
Introducing Mixed Recycling
Changes are coming this summer for recycling service in Birmingham as SOCRRA rolls out its 65-gallon, mixed-stream recycle carts for all single-family households. These wheeled containers eliminate the need to sort items, making recycling as easy as taking out the trash!
The following are answers to some frequently asked questions:
What is "Mixed Recycling"?
Currently SOCRRA collects materials in two streams - paper, and everything else (plastic, metal, glass containers), requiring recycling drivers to separate the two. Mixed recycling is when all recyclables can be mixed together in both the recycling container and recycling truck. The sorting of materials is done at the MRF, rather than by the recycling drivers.
Why switch to carts for recycling collection?
Proven benefits of switching to carts include more recyclables collected, increased convenience for residents to fit all their recyclables into one container, increased safety for workers, and potential cost savings. More materials diverted for recycling will increase revenue sharing for member communities thereby reducing disposal costs.
When will I receive my cart?
Cart distribution begins in mid-July, and is expected to run through mid-September.
How much do the carts cost?
Because Birmingham is a member of SOCRRA, all single-family households will receive a cart at no cost.
Is the cart difficult to handle?
Measuring 3.5' tall, 2' wide, and 2' deep, the carts are well-balanced and easy to maneuver, even when loaded. What's more, their footprint is nearly the same size as the current 18-gallon recycling bins.
Chef Clash at the Birmingham Farmers Market
On Sunday, June 25 from 10 a.m. to noon, Birmingham chefs will compete for the opportunity to be named Birmingham Farmers Market Master Chef. Chefs will be judged on interaction with patrons at the market, taste and overall presentation. Last year's Chef Gadulka from Toast will be defending his title as Master Chef!
Chefs will create a main savory dish from 10 a.m. - 11 a.m. with a secret ingredient, and they will
create a sweet dessert dish from 11 a.m. - noon using a different secret ingredient. The secret ingredient will be provided by the Birmingham Farmers Market.
Stop by on June 25 and watch our chefs go head-to-head as they prepare their dishes along the river walk for everyone to watch and enjoy. Our judges
are local celebrities and community leaders who will score each dish and announce the 2017 Birmingham Farmers Market Master Chef.
2017 Concrete Sidewalk Repair Program Begins
The City's concrete repair contractor has begun this year's program of concrete repairs. Throughout June, work will focus on repairing damaged concrete streets and sidewalks that are scattered throughout the City. Damaged sections are generally from water and sewer utility taps, water main breaks, catch basin repairs, or deteriorated concrete.
Later in the summer, the contractor will focus on concrete repairs in the 2017 sidewalk program area. The work this year will be north of Maple Rd., between the Rouge River and Adams Rd. All identified sidewalk trip hazards will be addressed. Repairs will generally be taken care of with removing and replacing small sections of concrete. Smaller trip hazards will be fixed by grinding off raised sections so that the surface is smooth.
The last section of work will focus on the northeast corner of the Central Business District. All trip hazards and damaged sidewalk sections will be repaired as needed.
A small percentage of the repairs will be billed to adjacent property owners. Those owners that will be billed for portions of the 2017 program should have received a notification from the Engineering Dept. by this time. Questions about the program may be directed to the Engineering Dept. at 248-530-1850.
Understanding Birmingham Leash Laws
Please remember all dogs must be on a leash when off your personal property or not within the confines of the dog park. The following are our city ordinances that apply to dog owners walking their dogs in the city:
- Restraint of dogs.
It shall be unlawful for any owner of any dog to permit the dog to go beyond the premises of such owner unless restrained by a chain or leash and under the reasonable control of some person.
Sec. 18-36. - Vicious dogs prohibited.
No person shall own or harbor a fierce or vicious dog, or a dog that has been bitten by any animal known to have been afflicted with rabies. All dogs found to be vicious and all rabid dogs shall be destroyed, unless otherwise disposed of by the owner thereof.
Sec. 18-51. - Required.
It shall be unlawful for any person to own, possess or harbor any dog or cat four months old or over in the city unless such dog or cat is licensed, or to own, harbor or possess any dog or cat four months old or over that does not at all times wear a collar or harness with suitable tag attached or with the license number written indelibly thereon. All dogs and cats shall be immunized against rabies, prior to the issuance of a license under this division.
If you have questions regarding the Animal Ordinance you may call the Police Department at 248.530.1889 or the City Clerk's office at 248.530.1880.
Off-Leash Fun at Lincoln Hills Dog Park
If you're looking for off-leash adventures for your dog, look no further than the Lincoln Hills Dog Park! Located at the southeast edge of the Lincoln Hills Golf Course (located at 2666 West Fourteen Mile Road, just west of Cranbrook Road), the dog park is open every day from dawn until dusk. Registered dog park users may bring their four-legged friends out to play! Your dog will enjoy running around in a securely fenced .85 acre Dog Park. Learn more at
Avoid Fines: Keep Grass & Weeds Below Eight Inches
To ensure our city looks well-maintained, the City's ordinance requires grass and weeds to be kept below eight inches high. Poison ivy, ragweed or any other poisonous, noxious or unhealthy growths are prohibited. Those in violation of this ordinance will have their lawn mowed and will be required to pay for the service. Access the entire Grass and Noxious Weed ordinance (Sec. 118-66) on the City's web site. For more information, call the Department of Public Services at
Party & Rock Concert at The Birmingham Museum's CREEM, Revisited Event
Saturday, June 10 from 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
The community is invited to The Birmingham Museum for a family-friendly public party to celebrate the museum's permanent CREEM exhibit and Charlie Auringer Reading Room. The CREEM, Revisited event will be held on Saturday, June 10 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on the back porch and lawn of the Allen House.Those yearning for the good old days of sitting on a blanket to the sounds of live rock and roll, goodies and giveaways will enjoy this event. And, just like way back then, this one is FREE.
Attendees will meet former CREEM editor and long time music critic for the Detroit News, Susan Whitall, and other former CREEM staffers, including J.J. Kramer, son of CREEM founder Barry Kramer. Attendees will enjoy light refreshments, courtesy of the Friends of the Birmingham Museum. Live performances by Acoustic Madness (with members of CREEM's former house band) and East Side Story will re-create that vintage musical vibe, while Whitall and other former staffers pause to reminisce about CREEM's golden years with the audience. Noted documentary filmmaker Scott Crawford ("Salad Days: The Birth of Punk Rock") will also be on hand to capture audience and CREEM staff interviews for his current project in production, "Boy Howdy: The Story of CREEM Magazine."
Visitors inside the museum will be able to view the permanent CREEM Magazine exhibit and Charlie Auringer Reading Room. The exhibit re-creates the magazine's Birmingham offices in downtown Birmingham during its heyday, 1973-1986, including numerous original artifacts. Attendees can explore a dedicated station with free access to a complete online digitized collection of the full run of CREEM, the result of a partnership between the Birmingham Museum and NA Publishing. While inside, visitors can enter a drawing for some unique giveaway items.
Those in attendance just might snag a selfie with a Detroit music legend that might stop by.
The concert is free; regular admission applies to view the exhibit.
Museum admission is $7 for adults; $5 for students and seniors. Kids five and under and Friends of the Birmingham Museum members are free.
For more information visit
June News from the Baldwin Library
Save the Date: Grand Reopening Featuring Fleur de Lys Ensemble
Sunday, June 11 from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Baldwin will celebrate the reopening of the Adult Services department with a ribbon-cutting ceremony, refreshments, tours, and a meeting of the Music Explorers featuring the Fleur de Lys String Ensemble.
1:00 P.M: Ribbon-cutting
2:00 P.M.: Music Explorers concert
Summer Reading Open House 2017: Build a Better World
Friday, June 16 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
Join us for the kickoff to BPL's annual Summer Reading Program. There will be fun for kids, teens, and adults alike, with games and prizes! This year we are collecting canned goods and non-perishable food to donate to a local food pantry. Please drop off your donations during the Open House.
The Baldwin Public Library is located at 300 W. Merrill Street in Birmingham. For more information visit
or call (248) 647-1700.
Thank you for reading Around Town, a monthly e-newsletter from the City of Birmingham. We hope you find the information timely and useful. Please feel free to forward this e-mail to friends and neighbors who may be interested in Birmingham.