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Tuesday, 15 April 2014 11:15

Chemical Bank weighs options for potential downtown Grand Rapids branch

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Chemical Bank has signed a letter of intent to lease space being vacated by Lee & Birch next to Start Garden in the Trade Center building in downtown Grand Rapids. Chemical Bank has signed a letter of intent to lease space being vacated by Lee & Birch next to Start Garden in the Trade Center building in downtown Grand Rapids. PHOTO: Joe Boomgaard

 Chemical Bank looks to bolster its presence in West Michigan with its first downtown Grand Rapids branch.

A spokesman at the Midland-based Chemical Financial Corp. confirmed to MiBiz that the company has signed a letter of intent with CWD Real Estate Investment to lease space fronting Ionia Avenue next to Start Garden in the Trade Center Building at 50 Louis Street NW.

“We’ve signed a letter of intent to lease the space and we’re weighing our options,” said John Hatfield, vice president and director of marketing at Chemical Bank. “We’ve been interested in a downtown location for some time.”

Chemical Financial has 156 offices in 38 counties across the Lower Peninsula with assets of $6.18 billion at the end of 2013.

The existing tenants of the space, retailers Lee & Birch GR LLC, are relocating to 759 Wealthy Street SE in the Uptown neighborhood after three years in downtown Grand Rapids. The new location, which formerly housed Ron’s Car Wash and Coffee Shop, offers on-site parking, outdoors space for special events and the potential for expansion, Lee & Birch owner Nikki Gillette said in a statement.

“The downtown business community has been great to us,” Gillette stated. “While we have enjoyed being downtown, we are looking forward to joining the thriving Wealthy business district and to better serving our customers.”

In the run up to the move, Lee and Birch is having a moving sale starting May 5 and is also in the process of setting up a summer fashion show to celebrate the new location. The store is expected to open at the new location by the end of May.

“We are planning one of our signature summer fashion shows to celebrate our new home and to thank our loyal customers for all of their support,” Gillette said.

Read 3331 times Last modified on Tuesday, 15 April 2014 13:05

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