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Real Estate/Development

West Michigan housing groups are still experiencing a steady flow of people who have been affected financially by the pandemic and are seeking rental relief through the state’s COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA) program.

Before forming the West Michigan chapter of the Commercial Real Estate Women Network (CREW), its founding members realized that most of their business leads came from networking with other women. 

GRAND RAPIDS — The city of Grand Rapids experienced an increase of 658 residential units in its housing stock last year, 289 of which were low-income housing spaces. 

WYOMING — Vander Kodde Construction Co. was recently acquired by the third generation in the firm’s family ownership. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Advantage Commercial Real Estate Services LLC has moved to new offices in its second year as the firm looks to grow its staff and presence in the region.

GRAND RAPIDS — HealthBar LLC, a provider of health care services to businesses and consumers that include drive-thru clinics and telehealth, is collaborating with marketing agency Deksia LLC on a new shared headquarters.

PORTAGE — Commercial real estate firm The Hinman Co. has made its second property acquisition in Portage in the past six months.

GRAND RAPIDS — Leaders of The Diatribe Inc. are planning a mixed-use building that would house the nonprofit’s offices as well as retail storefronts, apartment units and a performing arts venue.

West Michigan’s lakeshore is in the midst of several major redevelopment projects that include grandiose plans for lakefront reconfigurations spanning Manistee to Grand Haven.

As president of Rockford Construction Co. Inc.’s construction division, Shane Napper has played a key part in many of the company’s major projects over the years. Napper has been at Rockford Construction for more than 20 years, and says the industry is now in the middle of a major evolution.

As one of the founding members of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) in 1993, Keith Winn found “kindred spirits” within the environmental movement to improve built spaces.

After nearly two years, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic can be seen across all sectors of the commercial real estate market, but especially in downtowns. And the biggest question surrounding commercial real estate remains largely unanswered: What is the future of office space?

CHARLOTTE — Grain handler and exporter Citizens LLC is being acquired by a fellow Michigan business with deep roots in the industry.

GRAND RAPIDS — A historic downtown building that formerly housed J. Gardella’s Tavern has sold for $1.1 million, and the new owner plans renovations and a new restaurant concept. 

GRAND RAPIDS — The city’s Planning Commission on Thursday approved a rezoning that would facilitate the construction of 42 condominium lots as well as the construction of a four-story office building in the Garfield Park Neighborhood. 

GRAND RAPIDS — The restaurants, bars and entertainment venues inside The B.O.B. in downtown Grand Rapids will close while GLC Live at 20 Monroe will remain as a venue ahead of the two buildings’ pending sales, property owner Gilmore Collection announced today.

GRAND RAPIDS — Dr. Grins Comedy Club is preparing for its last event in The B.O.B. at the end of the month ahead of the expected sale of the building to a new owner.

MUSKEGON — The developer of a six-story mixed-use project in downtown Muskegon is changing the scope of the development to replace some office space with more residential units to reflect market demand.

WALKER — Developers from Lansing and Farmington Hills are partnering on a $23 million transaction to purchase Green Ridge Square retail shopping center in Walker.

The construction industry experienced widespread pauses on projects in 2020 during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the backlog made for a packed year in 2021, which features a range of ongoing projects including housing developments and reuses of former industrial buildings.

High demand for new projects has 2021 shaping up to be a banner year for many West Michigan construction firms, even as executives grapple with higher costs and longer lead times.

The lack of affordable housing has been a highly discussed topic at the local and state levels this past year as the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated an already tight market.

GRAND RAPIDS — A mixed-use building with 235 market-rate apartments in downtown Grand Rapids was recently sold for more than $50.7 million, and the buyer hopes to make at least dozens of units more affordable. 

Prices and lead times for construction materials continue surging to historic levels, yet local architecture and construction firms say their workloads aren’t being adversely affected.

GRAND RAPIDS TWP. — Wheeler Development Group LLC is planning a 52-unit townhome community northeast of Grand Rapids.

GRAND RAPIDS — Construction has started on an $18.6 million, mixed-use development with 120 apartments on Grand Rapids’ west side. 

GRAND RAPIDS — City officials have taken another step toward approving $22 million in brownfield incentives for Spectrum Health’s Center for Transformation and Innovation campus.

KENTWOOD — Midwest Air Filter Inc. recently consolidated its Lansing and Grand Rapids locations into a 60,000-square-foot facility in Kentwood.

GRAND RAPIDS — Terra Bagels LLC is expanding with a second location, branching out from the city’s Eastown neighborhood to a downtown Grand Rapids storefront at the Michigan Trust Building that was previously occupied by Ferris Coffee & Nut Co.  

West Michigan’s commercial office market is in a lull as companies remain hesitant to bring back workers while offering more flexible schedules, leading to worsening vacancy rates and a lack of investment in new construction.

GRAND RAPIDS — The Grand Rapids Planning Commission approved a special land use request Thursday for a developer’s plan to construct a three-story, mixed-use building that will include a new expanded location for The Peoples Cider Co. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Construction recently started on a $12 million, 50-unit apartment complex that’s been in the works since 2017 in the city’s Belknap Lookout neighborhood. 

GRAND HAVEN — Architecture and engineering firm TowerPinkster is expanding in West Michigan with plans to open an office in Grand Haven.

GRAND RAPIDS — A music school that operates under the same name and a similar style to the movie “School of Rock” is coming to Grand Rapids. 

GRAND RAPIDS — The owner of southern-style restaurant The Candied Yam LLC is eyeing an expansion with a new banquet hall and restaurant along South Division Avenue in Grand Rapids. 

PLAINFIELD TWP. — The side wall of the Witmark building came crashing down Thursday as workers began demolishing the blighted building that has sat vacant for about 20 years.

HOLLAND — Fifth Third Bank is looking to sell its historic branch building in downtown Holland.

KALAMAZOO — State officials have approved a loan and brownfield incentives for a $13.2 million, five-story mixed-use development planned at a former industrial site north of downtown Kalamazoo. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Nonprofit housing developer Dwelling Place is planning to construct nearly 50 single-family condominium units in Grand Rapids that would be permanently affordable under a community land trust model.

BYRON CENTER — Among the dozens of retailers at Tanger Outlets outdoor shopping mall in Byron Center, a husband and wife duo are looking to capitalize on the growing movement of dedicated selfie destinations.

Plainfield Township-based architecture and engineering firm Progressive AE Inc. recently grew its team with Vlad Torskiy, who has more than 25 years of experience in health care architecture and strategic planning.

Multi-state retailer JARS Cannabis has announced plans for two more West Michigan dispensaries following the recent completion of a store in Grand Rapids.

GRAND RAPIDS — The owners of Butcher’s Union and O’Toole’s Public House are planning another restaurant just off of Bridge Street on Grand Rapids’ west side. 

PLAINFIELD TWP. — Architecture and engineering firm Progressive AE Inc. has joined a national challenge calling for all new buildings, developments and major renovations to be carbon neutral by 2030.

GRAND RAPIDS — Spectrum Health has filed a Brownfield Plan Amendment for its new Center for Transformation and Innovation, an eight-story office tower planned for the Monroe North neighborhood near downtown Grand Rapids. 

TowerPinkster and Indiana-based Kovert Hawkins Architects Inc. are merging to create a more geographically diverse design firm, the companies announced today.

SPARTA — Adhesive tape manufacturer Tesa Tape Inc. recently started construction on an expanded facility in Sparta, which is expected to bring at least 25 new jobs to the area.

West Michigan’s industrial real estate sector continues to outpace expectations amid record-high demand for space, leading to some new construction despite high materials costs, substantial lead times and employers struggling to fill vacant positions.