GRAND RAPIDS — Pending finalization of the building’s purchase agreement, Gaia Cafe and the Division Avenue Arts Collective LLC have a clearer path to opening in Grand Rapids’ Creston neighborhood.
The Grand Rapids Planning Commission unanimously approved a special land use for the DAAC during its Thursday meeting, finding the revitalization of a long-vacant building at 1553 Plainfield Ave. NE fits with the city’s master plan in that it encourages reinvestment in key corridors.
The special land use permit was needed to allow DAAC, a community center and assembly space, to move into the building, as it plans to host live music performances and after-school arts programming for youth.
With the planning commission’s approval, Lizzie Grathwol, DAAC board member Charity Lytle and Gaia owner Andrea Bumstead will move forward with purchasing the facility, the three partners previously told MiBiz.
The 4,972-square-foot building will house Gaia Cafe, a beloved vegetarian/vegan restaurant formerly located on Diamond Avenue in the East Hills neighborhood, and the DAAC, an all-ages venue for music and visual art, exhibitions and community meetings. Plans for the building also call for another commercial space, and there is a two-bedroom apartment on the second level.
The partners will co-own the building, with Grathwol serving as the building manager. They hope to start renovations in April.
Both Gaia and the DAAC had been on the hunt for spaces since both were displaced in recent years.