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Hinman Co. is now proposing a 13-story development for a triangular lot bordered by Fulton Street, Louis Street and Ionia Avenue in downtown Grand Rapids. The company’s original plans — announced in 2016 — included a 42-story tower at the site. Hinman Co. is now proposing a 13-story development for a triangular lot bordered by Fulton Street, Louis Street and Ionia Avenue in downtown Grand Rapids. The company’s original plans — announced in 2016 — included a 42-story tower at the site. COURTESY RENDERING

Hinman scales back plans for proposed tower in downtown GR

BY Thursday, June 14, 2018 09:28am

GRAND RAPIDS — A Portage developer is scaling back plans for a 42-story tower in the middle of downtown Grand Rapids that it first announced two years ago.

Documents filed last week show that The Hinman Co. now seeks to build a 13-story building at property it owns at 10 Ionia Ave. NW, a wedge-shaped surface parking lot at bordered by Fulton Street, Louis Street and Ionia Avenue.

“We continue to be committed to developing a great project on the 10 Ionia site,” Roger Hinman, president and CEO of Hinman Co., said in a statement to MiBiz. “Many factors impact the potential development of any property and 10 Ionia is no different.”

MiBiz first broke news of the initial development in June 2016.

The scaled-back plans now call for ground-floor commercial space and a hotel at the site, Hinman said in the statement. The newly updated design retains the building’s “flatiron” style, but removes the proposed apartment component.

“With thousands of apartment units recently built, under construction, or planned, it was necessary to revisit this part of the project in response to market pressures,” Hinman said, noting the real estate firm evaluated going forward with fewer apartments but doing so would have resulted in a loss of cost efficiencies for the project.

Hinman also noted the parking garage his development firm owns across the street from the site at the northeast corner of Louis Street and Ionia Avenue “will remain for now.”

The proposed building’s conversion to predominantly hotel use comes at a time of increased hotel development in the Grand Rapids central business district, as MiBiz recently reported.

A timeline for Hinman Co.’s project to move forward remains unclear. However, the proposal is on the agenda for the June 20 meeting of the Grand Rapids Historic Preservation Commission as an amendment to its 2016 approval of the project as a 42-story building.

City documents note that the design remains largely similar, albeit with different scaling to match the reduced height of 162 feet.

“Essentially the building will remain as it was previously approved with the exception of the height which will be brought down to a scale very similar to that of the historic building that once occupied this site,” city staff wrote of the new proposal.

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