Kate Carlson

Kate Carlson

Staff Writer, covers real estate and development and small businesses


Twitter: @BizCarlson
Email: [email protected]

Friday, 03 February 2023 16:18

Arena board OK’s new agreement to examine amphitheater-adjacent properties; venue design nears completion

GRAND RAPIDS — The Grand Rapids-Kent County Convention/Arena Authority has authorized an agreement with a private sector partner to examine development opportunities on several properties near a proposed riverfront amphitheater.

Wednesday, 01 February 2023 12:57

Younger demographics play in GR’s favor with 2023 economic outlook

GRAND RAPIDS — The Grand Rapids area’s relatively large number of young people, steady automotive sector and resilient housing market could all help the region avoid a potential recession looming over the nation this year.

Tuesday, 31 January 2023 16:10

Sparta kicks off renewed effort to revitalize long-vacant downtown opera house 

SPARTA — A new task force organized by Sparta’s Downtown Development Authority is working to revitalize the historic Sparta Opera House, which has long sat vacant in the village’s downtown district.

Tuesday, 31 January 2023 12:20

Developer plans 2-story, mixed-use project on Wealthy Street where historic building burned down

GRAND RAPIDS — A local development firm plans to build a two-story, mixed-use project on a vacant lot in Grand Rapids’ East Hills neighborhood where a historic structure burned down last year.

Sunday, 29 January 2023 18:11

BURNED OUT: Big Rapids cannabis market shows signs of oversaturation

5 dispensaries close in city within last 12 months

Friday, 27 January 2023 12:02

BETTING ON MUSKEGON: Parkland Properties plans ‘flagship’ project at Watermark Center 

MUSKEGON — Parkland Properties President Jon Rooks felt a sense of obligation to purchase the former Shaw Walker Furniture Co. building in Muskegon, where the company now plans a $220 million redevelopment.

Thursday, 26 January 2023 16:11

Whitmer highlights tax relief, workforce development plans at Grand Rapids roundtable

GRAND RAPIDS — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer held a roundtable event Thursday with roughly a dozen seniors in Grand Rapids, highlighting her administration’s efforts to combat the rising cost of living through various tax cuts.

Tuesday, 24 January 2023 14:54

Lambert & Co. founder acquires downtown GR building for $3M to support growth

GRAND RAPIDS — The founder of public relations and investor relations firm Lambert & Co. has acquired a downtown Grand Rapids building to accommodate growth as well as the formation of a tech and marketing hub.

Friday, 20 January 2023 17:02

Fishbeck boosts environmental practice in deal for SW Michigan-based Envirologic

CASCADE TWP. — Architecture and engineering firm Fishbeck is growing its environmental practice with the acquisition of Southwest Michigan’s Envirologic Technologies Inc.

Thursday, 19 January 2023 16:40

New GRCC president discusses business partnerships, boosting enrollment

Charles Lepper started this week as the 11th president of Grand Rapids Community College, succeeding Bill Pink, who took a job in July 2022 as the president of Ferris State University.

Wednesday, 18 January 2023 15:22

Homeowner assistance toolbox to help expand housing options in Charlevoix County

CHARLEVOIX — Charlevoix County is exploring accessory dwelling units as a pathway to expand housing options, and will offer homeowners a step-by-step guide to consider creating such units on their property.

Wednesday, 18 January 2023 14:50

Mixed-use building, adjacent properties in GR’s Monroe North district sell for $22.6M 

GRAND RAPIDS — A large mixed-use development in Grand Rapids’ active Monroe North business district, along with an adjacent parcel and nearby parking lot open for future development, sold for $22.6 million at the end of 2022.

Sunday, 15 January 2023 17:12

CRAFTY MOVE: Cannabis microbusinesses emphasize local products, customer experience

West Michigan’s few cannabis microbusinesses are taking a page out of the craft brewery handbook with a clear focus on customer experience and an emphasis on locally produced products. 

Friday, 13 January 2023 12:27

6 West Michigan affordable housing projects receive $6.1M in tax credits

Housing projects in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Traverse City, Spring Lake and Three Rivers received nearly $6.1 million in the latest round of Low Income Housing Tax Credits administered by the state. 

Thursday, 12 January 2023 17:25

Sip Shine tasting room, restaurant, rooftop bar OK’d for Grand Rapids’ west side

GRAND RAPIDS — Moonshine and canned cocktail marketer Sip Shine LLC plans to bring a new nightlife experience to Grand Rapids’ west side this spring at the former Harmony Hall building.

Thursday, 12 January 2023 15:17

Michigan Turkey Producers awarded $1.5M federal grant to bolster processing capacity

GRAND RAPIDS — Michigan Turkey Producers Co-Op Inc. has received $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to bolster its meat processing capacity.

Wednesday, 11 January 2023 14:31

Dwelling Place set to break ground on 42-unit community land trust housing project

GRAND RAPIDS — Nonprofit housing developer Dwelling Place plans to break ground this spring on a years-long project to build 42 homes in Grand Rapids’ Garfield Park Neighborhood. 

Tuesday, 10 January 2023 15:38

GR developer plans 10-story, riverside mixed-use project with 140 residential units

GRAND RAPIDS — A 10-story, mixed-use building with 140 residential units would replace two mostly vacant office buildings along the Grand River as part of a developer’s plan to add housing and public river access to a former industrial part of the city.

Thursday, 05 January 2023 16:44

Developer seeks to cut hundreds of housing units from original Sligh building redevelopment plan

GRAND RAPIDS — The Detroit-based company proposing a massive redevelopment of the former Sligh Furniture factory in Grand Rapids wants to cut more than 300 housing units from the original proposal and add a self-storage component, among other changes.

Wednesday, 04 January 2023 16:13

CWD buys Creston neighborhood eatery, taps Essence Restaurant Group to take over Lucy’s cafe

GRAND RAPIDS — Restaurant operator Essence Restaurant Group LLC, which owns The Green Well, Bistro Bella Vita and Grove in Grand Rapids, is now taking over Lucy’s, a breakfast, brunch and coffee bar concept in the Creston neighborhood. 

Tuesday, 03 January 2023 16:22

‘COMPLETELY BLINDSIDED’: Ottawa Impact commissioners oust multiple top officials at first meeting

WEST OLIVE — A recently elected slate of Ottawa County commissioners used their first day at the dais to oust the county administrator and public health director, appoint a conservative legal firm as its general counsel, and eliminate the county’s diversity, equity and inclusion department. 

Monday, 02 January 2023 17:23

Lakeshore companies experienced growth despite talent, supply chain challenges in 2022

Executives from 120 companies in Allegan and Ottawa counties overwhelmingly reported positive growth in 2022, despite continuing challenges they face when it comes to attracting talent and supply chain disruptions. 

Wednesday, 21 December 2022 18:30

Facing strong headwinds, West Michigan cannabis operators seek new options for growth 

Michigan cannabis prices have plummeted as more competition saturates the market, leaving industry operators eyeing new pathways like consumption lounges to grow their businesses in 2023. 

Wednesday, 21 December 2022 15:46

Raising minimum, tipped wages expected to cause ‘monumental shift’ for restaurants

Michigan’s minimum and tipped minimum wages are both set to increase in 2023, while pending litigation could cause even more significant changes for the hospitality industry that proponents say are overdue and some operators fear.

Tuesday, 20 December 2022 22:28

Multifamily investment firm buys multiple Calvin Seminary student housing buildings for $5.6M

GRAND RAPIDS — Multifamily investment and property management firm Trillium Investments LLC recently purchased 62 student housing units from Calvin Theological Seminary for $5.6 million.

Tuesday, 20 December 2022 21:08

Urban office outlook could shift as companies weigh lease renewals in 2023

Commercial real estate executives largely share the view that more answers about the future of the West Michigan office market will emerge in the next year or two as more office leases come up for renewal.

Friday, 16 December 2022 16:45

Non-alcoholic spirits shop opens on Grand Rapids’ west side

GRAND RAPIDS — The mixologists behind a non-alcoholic beverage shop in Grand Rapids’ Downtown Market recently opened a retail storefront with a wide selection of zero-proof cocktail mixers, spirits, beer and wines.

Friday, 16 December 2022 15:17

West Mich. housing organizations awarded $4.2M from state Missing Middle Housing Program

Four West Michigan housing nonprofits will receive $4.2 million in state grant funding to construct or upgrade 71 homes and rental units.

Sunday, 18 December 2022 18:00

Ottawa Co. leaders worry about attracting, retaining talent with incoming ‘Ottawa Impact’ majority

Roger Bergman and Doug Zylstra are preparing for a new term on the Ottawa County Board of Commissioners unlike any other.

Thursday, 15 December 2022 20:39

GR airport to complete $110M concourse expansion next year

CASCADE TWP. — Gerald R. Ford International Airport officials expect to complete a $110 million concourse expansion in June 2023, followed by renovation work on the existing concourse that’s set to finish in early 2024.

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