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Kate Carlson

Kate Carlson

Staff Writer, covers real estate and development and small businesses

 

Twitter: @BizCarlson
Email: [email protected]

GRAND RAPIDS — A proposal that would allow a newly created nonprofit to help Grand Rapids cannabis companies meet their social equity pledges is facing pushback from some business owners and city officials who see it as diluting social justice efforts.

Historically high housing and fuel prices have made access to public transportation an increasingly important piece to developing much-needed affordable housing. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Despite numerous complexities involved with improving the congested Wealthy Street interchange at U.S.-131, city and community leaders seek to create more connectivity with $10 million recently allocated to upgrade the aging infrastructure.


WAYLAND — Gun Lake Casino today officially broke ground on its $300 million expansion that includes a 15-story hotel and multi-purpose “aquadome” enclosed pool space that will double as a nightlife venue.

ZEELAND TWP. — Walters Gardens Inc. is investing $9.15 million to expand its operations in Zeeland Charter Township with a new 40,000-square-foot greenhouse.

A recent survey of nearly 150 Michigan restaurant and hotel owners shows that most are still struggling with inadequate staffing and supply chain disruptions, and almost all employers are raising wages for their workers to address staffing shortages. 



A Chicago-based property management firm sees long-term opportunity in the Grand Rapids market following a pair of apartment building acquisitions in the past six months totaling more than $17 million in investment.

GRAND RAPIDS — Bazzani Building Co. has sold its recently constructed, all-electric Bradford Station apartment building in Grand Rapids for $4.65 million to a Chicago-based property management firm.

GRAND RAPIDS — New City Neighbors is set to unveil its new location at a renovated urban farmhouse that sits on a 1-acre plot in the city’s Creston neighborhood.


GRAND RAPIDS — A divided Grand Rapids City Commission is granting a 90-day grace period to cannabis operators that are failing to meet social equity goals they promised three years ago while city staff determine a path forward.

BYRON CENTER — A nonprofit that helps rebuild homes following natural disasters has moved into a newly constructed building in Byron Center after previously working from two separate locations. 

GRAND RAPIDS — City officials are backing plans that would redesign the Wealthy Street interchange at U.S.-131 to bring the street to grade level while elevating the highway.



Nate Beene’s decision to join the leadership team at Construction Allies in Action was driven by his passion to remove barriers for local women and minority business owners in the construction industry.

Clean energy and housing advocates in Michigan are working to spend down an increasing amount of weatherization funds with a shrinking pool of contractors at their disposal. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Just three out of 11 cannabis dispensaries are fully complying with voluntary social equity commitments they made three years ago to improve their chances of obtaining a license in a highly competitive lottery system, MiBiz has learned.


Muskegon County’s economic development organization has named Marla Schneider as its new president and CEO following a three-year restructuring the organization took on to attract new corporate funders and revamp strategic planning. 

A group of business owners and environmental and housing advocates are calling on the state to invest $1.65 billion in affordable, energy efficient homes as the Whitmer administration also pursues a statewide housing plan.

Two entrepreneurs and a construction industry veteran are launching a new Grand Rapids-based construction management firm.


GRAND RAPIDS — When Richard App started his role as retail retention and attraction specialist at the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce in January 2020, Gazelle Sports was on his list of retailers he hoped to bring downtown.

Start Garden Inc. is now accepting pitches from entrepreneurs competing in The 100, a business competition with $300,000 in funding for startups. 

GRAND RAPIDS — The Rowe, a downtown Grand Rapids mixed-use building formerly owned by the DeVos family office, recently sold for $19.6 million to a California-based real estate firm.


GRAND RAPIDS — City officials have approved a 12-year Neighborhood Enterprise Zone tax incentive for the $52 million second construction phase of the Studio Park development downtown.

KALAMAZOO — The developer planning a 52-unit, mixed-use project at a former industrial site north of downtown Kalamazoo will receive $1.2 million in additional state loans as construction costs escalate.

GRAND RAPIDS — A new nonprofit organization is working to create a membership-based program to provide resources for minority-owned, women-owned and micro-local construction contractors.


After sharply declining at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the rate of small business deals is nearing 2019 levels again as owners find reasons to exit and sellers see companies that have weathered a two-year storm.

GRAND RAPIDS — The developer proposing a massive redesign of a former Grand Rapids furniture factory recently acquired the sprawling building, brought on a partnering development firm and received a six-month zoning-related extension from city planners.

GRAND RAPIDS — Patrick Lyoya’s death took place in a Grand Rapids neighborhood long traumatized by icy police-community relations that’s also in the process of a major redevelopment to help overcome long standing underinvestment.


WALKER — City officials have approved automotive parts manufacturer Kenona Industries Inc.’s plan for a new 90,500-square-foot industrial building adjacent to the company’s current location south of I-96. 

Former executives at Colliers International’s West Michigan office that left the real estate group in January 2021 to start their own firm breached non-solicitation obligations in the process, according to an arbitration resolution announced this week. 

WALKER — An Illinois developer is seeking final site plan approval for a 250-unit apartment complex at the former Lincoln Country Club that would greenlight the first phase of what’s been a multi-year process stalled by neighborhood concerns and the COVID-19 pandemic.