Sydney Smith

Sydney Smith

Staff Writer, covers real estate and economic development
Twitter: @BizSyd
Email: [email protected]

GRAND RAPIDS — Three years ago when Central District Cyclery owner Nate Phelps moved his business from downtown Grand Rapids into the Creston business district, he was banking on an influx of new residents and activity that would support his bicycle shop.

GRAND RAPIDS — Kent County commissioners will again discuss what to do with a county-owned office building in downtown Grand Rapids, as well as other building projects, as it decides what to fund in the next few years.

JENISON — Trillium Investments LLC, a Grand Rapids-based multifamily investment and property management firm, has acquired the 160-unit Cottonwood Forest Apartments in Jenison.

GRAND RAPIDS — SpendMend LLC is the newest tenant at Cascade Office Park, Portage-based The Hinman Co. announced Friday.

Backed by an infusion of $55 million in federal funds, Lansing-based Michigan Community Capital plans to continue investing in mixed-income housing projects across the state. 

GRAND RAPIDS — The opportunity to lease brand new office space in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids offered Van Wyk Risk Solutions the chance to grow into a new location. 

WYOMING — A 92-acre shovel-ready industrial property sits empty about five miles south of downtown Grand Rapids, even amid a shortage of available manufacturing spaces across West Michigan.

After two decades with the city of Grand Rapids, most recently as managing director of design, development and community engagement, Suzanne Schulz plans to leave the public sector for an urban planning practice leader position at Grand Rapids-based Progressive AE Inc. Schulz will work her last day at the city on Sept. 6.  In her current role, Schulz is in a powerful position to oversee development projects throughout the city, especially after a period of strong growth in the years after the Great Recession. Schulz spoke with MiBiz about how changes in land development practices have affected the city, and what she is most looking forward to in the private sector.

Officials studying commuter transit options between Grand Rapids and Holland are hoping to make West Michigan more competitive when it comes to talent attraction.

KALAMAZOO — Western Michigan University has the green light to begin selling parcels in the second phase of its Business Technology and Research Park.

GRAND RAPIDS — Office furniture dealer and custom manufacturer Custer Inc. has opened a pair of new showroom spaces in West Michigan.

GRAND RAPIDS — Two senior officials are planning to leave the city’s planning and development departments for new opportunities, MiBiz has learned.

BATTLE CREEK -- Battle Creek Unlimited Inc. (BCU) has been awarded $2 million by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to establish and administer funds to make improvements to downtown Battle Creek. 

MUSKEGON — The city of Muskegon has purchased the former West Shoreline Correctional Facility, the Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority announced today.

MUSKEGON — A large new housing development in Muskegon has gained support from the city government.

GRAND RAPIDS — Moving into a larger ground-floor space in the prominent Harris Building on South Division Avenue gave a boost to business at Little Space Studio LLC.

GRAND RAPIDS — Citing high occupancy in the city’s parking facilities and a long waitlist for monthly parking passes, Grand Rapids is considering plans to build two new parking decks to expand options for downtown workers.

GRAND RAPIDS — The Grand Rapids-Kent County Convention/Arena Authority has hired a consultant to lead the process of weighing concepts for developing a full-service hotel to serve the downtown convention center. 

Sunday, 23 June 2019 19:00

Q&A: Erin Knott, Equality Michigan

After being named executive director of Equality Michigan in May, Erin Knott is focusing in on efforts to expand the state’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to protect LGBTQ people.

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority announced this week that two West Michigan projects secured funding via the Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) program.

KALAMAZOO — The Kalamazoo-based Jim Gilmore Jr. Foundation has been awarded a grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. to add housing to downtown Kalamazoo.

The Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority is seeking proposals to redevelop the former state-run Deerfield Correctional Facility in Ionia. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Michigan’s second-largest city crossed the 200,000-person population milestone for the first time last summer, as communities along the western side of the state posted strong growth.

After serving as executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Kent County for seven years, BriAnne McKee will work her last day on June 20 and move with her family to Boise, Idaho. 

BENTON HARBOR — As real estate activity picks up in Southwest Michigan, officials in the Benton Harbor area are hoping a developer will take interest in renovating a historic downtown building. 

Despite a range of threats and challenges, including very low vacancy rates market-wide, West Michigan’s traditional shopping corridors continue to thrive. 

BATTLE CREEK — Targeted incentives are paving the way for renewed vibrancy in Battle Creek’s downtown district.

GRAND RAPIDS — Springstead Bartish Borgula & Lynch PLLC plans to move its Grand Rapids headquarters after purchasing space downtown in the First Community Bank building.

GRAND RAPIDS — Public and private partners have signed a long-term lease that will pave the way the development of a medical innovation building and parking structure at Michigan State University’s Grand Rapids Research Center campus.

Orion Real Estate Solutions has signed a letter of intent with the city of Rockford to build a new boutique hotel downtown on city-owned property at 12 S. Main St.