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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 — The owners of Eastern Kille Distillery have sold their Grand Rapids manufacturing and tasting room property to Spectrum Health, generating a major return on the craft spirit makers’ real estate investment as they seek to maintain operations within the city.

WALKER — The Walker Planning Commission will consider a site plan Wednesday for a 21,350-square-foot speculative industrial building north of I-96.

Developers and contractors see some light at the end of the tunnel as sky-high prices for lumber and other construction commodities begin to decrease from peaks during the pandemic. 

GRAND RAPIDS — As city officials and private developers structure a property deal to advance plans for a downtown amphitheater, Kent County commissioners are seeking more involvement in a process on which they will ultimately vote.

BYRON TWP. — Special Olympics Michigan Inc. has launched the public phase of a capital campaign to raise $20 million to transform the former South Christian High School into what would be the largest Special Olympics facility in the world.

Floriza Genautis was recently named chairperson of the newly formed Asian American Business Council at the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce, where she hopes to better connect Asian American-owned businesses with one another and the rest of the business community.

ZEELAND — Coworking space Little Space Studio LLC recently reopened its downtown Grand Rapids location after delays from COVID-19, and is now expanding with another facility in Zeeland.

SAUGATUCK TWP. — New Standard cannabis company has opened its sixth dispensary in West Michigan with a newly built retail store in Saugatuck Township.

GRAND RAPIDS — Executives from across West Michigan gathered Tuesday to discuss the labor shortages permeating across industries, lessons learned from COVID-19 and the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion in company culture.

WALKER — Storage system manufacturer Speedrack Products Group Ltd. is expanding its Michigan operations with a nearly $65 million investment Walker.

GRAND RAPIDS — Wheeler Development Group LLC is in the conceptual stages of a planned mixed-use development with 39 apartment units and ground floor retail in Grand Rapids’ Eastown neighborhood.

If you were wondering why numerous businesses and almost every major corporation changed their logo on June 1 to reflect a rainbow theme, it’s because we’re in the middle of Pride month.

Planning officials in Grand Rapids, Kentwood and Wyoming hope a nearly completed study will help spur redevelopment along South Division Avenue after a highly touted bus rapid transit project failed to deliver on its economic development promises.

The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent widespread shift to remote working has stalled plans for a commuter transit system that would connect Grand Rapids and Holland.

Cities that were early to opt in to recreational cannabis are now seeing the benefits from entrepreneurs redeveloping old properties into sleek, modern retail businesses.

The Michigan Senate passed a package of bills today that would allow municipalities to award a range of tax incentives to developers for affordable housing projects. 

GRAND RAPIDS — City officials expect to purchase riverfront property currently home to the Kent County Road Commission by fall of 2023, setting in motion plans for an amphitheater to be constructed roughly two miles south.

State lawmakers have introduced a bill seeking compromise in the ongoing dispute between local governments and real estate advocates over short-term rental property regulations.

WALKER — The city’s Planning Commission will consider a final site plan review on June 16 for the second phase of a proposed development that would allow the Kent County Road Commission to relocate its operations to Walker.

GRAND RAPIDS — The city’s Local Development Finance Authority has recommended that Start Garden Inc. and Spartan Innovations L3C administer the Grand Rapids SmartZone business incubator through a collaborative approach.  

U.S. Sen. Gary Peters is trying to stop proposed federal changes that would take away the metropolitan area status and jeopardize crucial federal funding for six Michigan communities.

GRAND RAPIDS — The Right Place Inc. has published a new digital database of businesses owned by people of color, women, veterans and people in the LGBTQ community operating in a 13-county region of West Michigan. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Glass fabricator and installer Vos Glass LLC is planning to relocate within the city of Grand Rapids to accommodate growth and expansion.

NORTON SHORES — Adhesives, sealants and coatings manufacturer Seal Bond Inc. is planning to relocate its operations and headquarters from Spring Lake Township to a new 200,000-square-foot facility in Norton Shores.

GRAND RAPIDS — Cindy Schneider was ready to apply for a small business loan in March 2020 to open a new restaurant in downtown Grand Rapids when COVID-19 put her plans on hold.

Proposed changes to the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program administered by the Michigan State Housing Development Authority seek to increase access to the funding tool to communities beyond downtowns and city centers.

WALKER — Two former golf courses in the city of Walker are poised to be redeveloped into large-scale housing projects with a combined total of 757 rental units and 67 single-family homes.

Local officials and affordable housing advocates in Michigan have been vocally opposed to legislation that would make short-term rentals a permitted use in all residential zones.

GRAND RAPIDS — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer unveiled a multi-million dollar plan Thursday that targets boosting wages, helping small businesses and providing access to childcare.

West Michigan tourism officials are reporting upward trends in travel and hotel stays as COVID-19 restrictions lift, and leaders are optimistic about the local tourism economy for the rest of the summer.

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