Ann Arbor, Michigan- University Town, Biological Sciences Center
Ann Arbor is a suburb of Detroit, about 45 miles west of the city. The city is home to Michigan's oldest university, the University of Michigan, which makes it a real college town. The population is about 114,000, and almost half are students or otherwise employed at the University. This former industrial center now has an economy mainly based on University and other service economy pursuits. Ann Arbor real estate is mixed together with the University throughout the city. Due to the strong component of medical and biological sciences at the University, a large number of biotechnology companies have set up in Ann Arbor. The University of Michigan employs approximately 30,000 workers, including about 7,500 in the medical center.
Several Museums and cultural attractions are located at the University. The Detroit Observatory, named after a group of Detroit donators to the University, houses original astronomical instruments from 1854. It is opened twice a month for tours. The University of Michigan Art Museum has extensive American painting collections. It includes a portrait of Rembrandt Peale, a Winslow Homer seascape and Hudson River School landscapes. Several performing arts groups and facilities are on the university's campus. For example there is a Residential College players group that puts on theatre performances. The Campus Symphony Orchestra and Univ. of Michigan Music School put on regular performances. There are also museums dedicated to archaeology, and natural history and sciences.
High-tech companies in the area include Arbor Networks, Arbortext, JSTOR, and MediaSpan Media Software. Ann Arbor is also the site of the Michigan Information Technology Center (MITC), whose offices house Internet2 and the Merit Network, a nonprofit research and education computer network. Google is planning to open a large office for its AdWords.
Several major companies are headquartered in Ann Arbor. The original Borders Books was opened in Ann Arbor. Domino's Pizza's headquarters is near Ann Arbor on Domino's Farms. Many cooperative enterprises were founded in the city during the 1960s and 1970s and include the People's Food Co-op and the Inter-Cooperative Council at the University of Michigan, a student-housing cooperative. The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, located in a renovated and expanded historic downtown fire station. It contains four floors of interactive science exhibits. One exhibit gives children a thorough introduction to computers and the internet, including an internet hall of fame. Another exhibit examines environmental project involving turning garbage to methane gas and power production. Artrain is a traveling art museum located on a train and is based in Ann Arbor but travels around the country. The city also has the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library.
The Ann Arbor Transportation Authority (AATA), "The Ride," operates public bus services throughout Ann Arbor and nearby Ypsilanti. A separate free bus service operates within the University of Michigan campuses. Ann Arbor Municipal Airport is a small general aviation facility. Detroit Metropolitan Airport, the area's large international airport, is approximately 28 miles to the east of the city. Amtrak provides service to Ann Arbor, operating its Wolverine train three times daily from Chicago, Illinois to Pontiac, Michigan, passing through Detroit.
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