Real Estate/Development

SPONSORED BY MICHIGAN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION | PURE PARTNERSHIP

News that The Hinman Co. plans to move forward with its long-planned tower in downtown Grand Rapids — albeit without 29 floors of residential units — indicated to many observers that the bottom has fallen out of the city’s apartment market.

As West Michigan law firms focus on talent recruitment and greater efficiencies, they increasingly are upgrading to modern, first-generation office space. 

Construction executives in West Michigan — known for its concentration of “merit shops” — generally speak favorably of the recent repeal of the state’s prevailing wage law.

GRAND RAPIDS –– New data on hotel rates across the Midwest offered some sobering analysis on the cost of a room in downtown Grand Rapids.

GRAND RAPIDS — When New Development Corp. rehabilitates older homes before selling them to qualified low-income families, the organization takes great care to remove contaminants like lead.

The uncertain future of Rivertown Crossings Mall in Grandville has cast a pall over West Michigan’s retail real estate market, where demand from new entrants is strong but places to put them remain in short supply.

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling expected this summer could either clarify or bring further uncertainty to the debate over when states can force online retailers to collect sales taxes.

MUSKEGON — A dozen years ago, after the demolition of the former Muskegon Mall, an eight-block area in the heart of downtown sat vacant, filled with sand, shells of vacant buildings and few people.

It’s been a tumultuous time for large retailers as consumers gravitate to the convenience of e-commerce and consciously shift their buying habits to local options. As these shifts continue to drive change and stress in the retail industry, many stakeholders still believe it offers significant opportunity. In separate interviews, MiBiz connected with retail advisers to gather their thoughts on the state of the industry, why it’s changing and where it’s going. They were:

The local and national retail industry faces many headwinds, but reports of its death have been greatly exaggerated.

As developers have largely focused on apartment projects around Grand Rapids in recent years, many housing advocates say the demand for single-family homes and ownership options have gone unmet.

In an era of increasing labor and material costs, Michigan contractors and building owners now face another issue that is sending construction costs higher.

GRAND RAPIDS — Proposals to upzone several Grand Rapids neighborhoods in an attempt to address housing issues have exposed deep divisions among local stakeholders.

With a historic renovation project in Detroit, a Grand Rapids-based construction management firm is positioning itself for the next step in its regional expansion.

GRAND RAPIDS –– When developer Franklin Partners LLC brings its proposed seven-story downtown office tower to market in the coming years, it will offer tenants Class A office space that’s currently in short supply across the city.

GRAND RAPIDS — Demand remains strong for urban apartments, although occupancy rates for the burgeoning market have begun to slip as new units come online. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Planners and neighborhood stakeholders believe that investing in some basic infrastructure in downtown Grand Rapids’ Heartside district could help spur equitable economic development.

GRAND RAPIDS –– After a largely procedural vote striking down a resolution to boost the inventory of public parking in Grand Rapids, city commissioners will likely reconsider the idea now that it’s gone through the proper channels.

GRAND RAPIDS –– In considering redevelopment plans for public property at 201 Market Avenue, the city weighed drastically different options.

As 2017 comes to a close, West Michigan’s construction and development industry continues to show signs of strength.

While inventory remains constrained, the value of commercial real estate transactions continues to gather momentum in West Michigan.

BYRON TOWNSHIP –– As Kent County looks to exit the landfill business by 2030, executives say West Michigan’s construction industry will need to adjust to a new model.

GRAND RAPIDS –– West Michigan leaders believe they made a compelling case for the region to serve as the home to online retail giant Amazon.com Inc.’s second headquarters.

GRAND RAPIDS — A West Michigan real estate firm has moved to settle a federal civil lawsuit alleging it engaged in racketeering and other fraudulent activities by charging higher rents at properties once intended for affordable housing.

As Michigan prepares to begin licensing medical marijuana businesses at the end of this year, the industry hopes for a windfall of new business and development opportunities, at least for communities willing to take advantage of them.

As Michigan prepares to begin licensing medical marijuana businesses at the end of this year, the industry hopes for a windfall of new business and development opportunities, at least for communities willing to take advantage of them.

As Michigan prepares to begin licensing medical marijuana businesses at the end of this year, the industry hopes for a windfall of new business and development opportunities, at least for communities willing to take advantage of them.

GRAND RAPIDS — The would-be developers of approximately 35 acres of property in southeast Grand Rapids are stepping back from their plans, at least for now.

GAINES TOWNSHIP — Technology firm Switch Inc. plans to buy the 700,000-square-foot Pyramid campus that’s home to its data center in southern Kent County, MiBiz has learned. 

The higher education student housing facilities of today have come a long way from the crowded dormitories familiar to many prior generations. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Another former MC Sports location in West Michigan could soon have a new tenant.

HOLLAND — Faced with a shortage of housing for people at various income levels, community leaders in Michigan’s fastest-growing county are exploring new ways to develop residential units.

GRAND RAPIDS — A 105,000-square-foot medical office building fully occupied by Metro Health-University of Michigan Health was acquired by new owners as part of a multi-state, 25-building property deal, MiBiz has learned.

With the retail sector undergoing seismic shifts to its traditional bricks-and-mortar business model, large malls and shopping centers continue to seek out new ways to remain relevant in the future.

GRAND RAPIDS — Citing demand for more diverse housing products, developers cautiously have started exploring whether to market new condominiums for sale in Grand Rapids’ downtown district.

MUSKEGON — Public and private partners hope to leverage existing assets as they move ahead with plans to develop a $15 million convention center in downtown Muskegon.

Spurred on by the dearth of available manufacturing space across West Michigan, developers have started to add inventory in the region by building or expanding industrial parks.

Grand Rapids may be known colloquially as Beer City, but visitors should plan to avoid walking between hip bars and eateries with a pint of local IPA, at least for the foreseeable future.

To some local economic observers, the success of the architecture and engineering industry in West Michigan serves as a microcosm of the region’s broader economy.

As West Michigan’s economy expands, planners and business owners find they’re facing a new growing pain.

GRAND RAPIDS — The new owner of Schuil Coffee Co. LLC hopes to leverage nearly two decades of experience in the packaged food and e-commerce industries to grow the 36-year-old roastery.

GRAND RAPIDS — Two large downtown sites along Division Avenue will likely remain vacant, at least for the foreseeable future.

Page 4 of 6