MUSKEGON — Baker College has sold its Muskegon campus to Muskegon County for $9.9 million, allowing the private nonprofit college to expand its presence downtown, school officials announced today.
Baker College intends to continue using the 30,000-square-foot campus at 1903 Marquette Ave. alongside the county until it relocates to a smaller location in downtown Muskegon, which could take up to three years. The campus has multiple buildings that can accommodate both organizations until the relocation occurs.
The Baker College Culinary Institute of Michigan’s three-story facility is already located downtown at 336 W. Clay Ave. Expanding operations downtown is part of Baker’s long-term strategy of pursuing walkable communities, according to school officials.
“Baker College Muskegon has called Marquette Ave. home for 20 years, so the sale of this facility feels bittersweet,” Baker College Muskegon President Aaron Maike said in a statement. “That said, we could not be more excited about relocating our campus community to a reimagined downtown Muskegon. There are plentiful residential and recreational opportunities for our students and staff, and we are working hard to solidify plans for our new home downtown.”
The property deal also allows the county to sell some of its South Campus property on Apple Avenue as well as an emergency services facility on Oak Avenue, according to media reports earlier this year. The county plans to consolidate several of its services, including the health department, treasurer and register of deeds and equalization. The Juvenile Transition Center will continue operating at the South Campus facility.
For Baker, today’s announcement begins the school’s ongoing move to downtown.
“With the completion of this facility sale, we now have the green light to put our move downtown in motion,” Maike said. “While we continue to evolve and make the transition downtown, the entire Baker College team remains committed to our students’ success and our continued partnership with the Muskegon community.”