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  #101  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2018, 2:07 PM
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There was a hearing Wednesday night in Fruitport, MI (outside of Muskegon) to discuss a new casino plan. The casino, proposed by the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians, would be built at the site of the former Great Lakes Downs horse racing track (near the US-31 / I-96 junction), which was demolished in 2008. The proposal includes a substantial, 220-room hotel, in addition to a 69,000 SF gaming floor. If all goes to plan, it could be open by 2020.

Quote:
Hearing Into Proposed Muskegon-Area Casino Tonight
Gary Stevens | WKZO
December 12, 2018

...The US Bureau of Indian Affairs holds a 6 PM public hearing this evening in the auditorium of Fruitport Middle School, as the agency seeks comment on the Environmental Impact Statement drawn up by the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians for a proposed trust acquisition and casino project at the site of the former Great Lakes Downs horse racing track. The tribe, who already operates the Little River Casino in Manistee, wants to build a 180 million-dollar complex that would include a 69 thousand square foot gaming house and a 220-room hotel near the junction of US-31 and I-96 southeast of Muskegon...

Source: WKSO | Courtesy Little River Band of Ottawa Indians/US Bureau of Indian Affairs
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  #102  
Old Posted Dec 29, 2018, 3:30 PM
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2018 was a good year for Muskegon.

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2018 was a big year for development in downtown Muskegon
Bryce Huffman | Michigan Radio
December 28, 2018

Two and a half years after the Consumer’s Energy power plant closed in Muskegon, city officials are moving forward with development projects. Frank Peterson, the Muskegon city manager, says the power plant was once worth nearly $100 million in taxable value...This year, about 20 development projects have either been completed, started or announced. Those projects include the Berkshire Muskegon senior apartments, Rad Dad’s Taco and Tequila Bar, Drip Drop Drink Coffee Bar and more...
This article summarizes many of the completed and in-progress projects in the city. Most have been posted on here before, although I had not seen that they have released preliminary renderings for the convention center project.

Quote:
Downtown Muskegon develops in leaps and bounds in 2018
Justine McGuire | MLive
December 27, 2018

MUSKEGON, MI - 2018 was a banner year for the downtown Muskegon area with about 20 development projects completed, in progress or announced. Multiple projects contributed to a changing landscape in the area, including the rise of Lake View Lofts, Berkshire Muskegon, a beer production facility and portions of Heritage Square; and the ongoing deconstruction of B.C. Cobb power plant and portions of the former Shaw Walker furniture factory. Other projects are aimed at enhancing the experience of visitors and locals, including the ongoing renovation of the L.C. Walker Arena, two new grocery stores, new restaurants and retail, hotel renovations and a dog park. Four of five projects that were announced, but have not yet broken ground, include housing and commercial space. The fifth is the much anticipated convention center...
Here's the convention center rendering, followed by some other images of note. There are many more in the article -

Source: MLive | Courtesy Progressive AE

Downtown, as seen from Highpoint Flats

Source: MLive | Mike Krebs

Lake View Lofts

Source: MLive | Justine McGuire

Heritage Square Commons

Source: MLive | Justine McGuire

Pigeon Hill Brewing Company Production Facility

Source: MLive | Justine McGuire

More to watch for in 2019 -

Quote:
Downtown Muskegon building to house brewery, 2 restaurants and coffee shop
Justine McGuire | MLive
December 17, 2018

MUSKEGON, MI - NorthTown 794 could be a miniature version of Grand Rapids’ The B.O.B, right in downtown Muskegon. NorthTown 794 is the reincarnation of the century-old former Al Perri furniture store at 794 Pine St. It will initially house four businesses. Built in 1923, the building is being restored to its former 1920s glory with the goal of contributing to the rapid redevelopment and rebirth of downtown Muskegon. It’s expected to open during spring 2019...
If you look back in the google maps timeline, you can see that the cladding was recently removed and the facades were restored.

2013 -


2017 -


Quote:
Residents eager to see updated waterfront community plan
Marvis Herring | WoodTV8
December 26, 2018

MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — Lakeshore residents are eager to learn more about a revised plan that would add luxury condos and homes along the Muskegon Lake waterfront. The Docks, a proposed residential development, would go in the middle of the city's Beachwood-Bluffton neighborhood. The developers, MiCoast Properties, received planning commission approval of its preliminary plan in October. The waterfront residential community is set to include 280 units, a pool, boardwalks, a pickleball, court and a massive boat basin...
Conceptual Site Plan

Source: WoodTV8 | Courtesy MiCoast properties

And we still await what will happen with the gutted Ameribank Building -

Quote:
'It’s tough’: Developer working on plan for Ameribank building in downtown Muskegon
Justine McGuire | MLive
December 17, 2018

MUSKEGON, MI - The former Ameribank building that stands as a shell in downtown Muskegon still isn’t sold. Entrepreneur John Essex has an option to purchase the building for $425,000. It was set to expire in November, but the city of Muskegon, which owns the building, extended it for 60 days, City Manager Frank Peterson said...Essex estimated that developing the building, 880 First St., would cost about $6 million...

Source: MLive | Justine McGuire
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  #103  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2019, 10:47 PM
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Developer gets 12-year tax break to finish Muskegon high-rise project

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MUSKEGON, MI – The commercial side of downtown Muskegon’s high-rise apartment building, Highpoint Flats, is nearly complete and has received a 12-year tax abatement to help the developer finish the project.

Highpoint Flats, owned by local entrepreneur Jon Rooks, opened its doors to residential tenants in spring 2018. The bottom two floors of the building at the corner of West Western Avenue and First Street are reserved for retail shops and soon will be occupied by a grocery store, a credit union, an insurance broker and two office spaces.


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  #104  
Old Posted Feb 2, 2019, 2:19 PM
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Lansing-based Clark Construction recently won the pre-construction contract for the planned Muskegon Convention Center. Under this contract, Clark will review the Architect's drawings and help manage the bidding process. While this contract does not guarantee Clark the job to oversee the actually construction-portion of the project, they are among four finalists for that contract. With their foot in the door, unless something goes wrong during pre-construction, they will likely get the job.

Quote:
City hires contractor to review Muskegon convention center plans
Ben Solis | MLive
January 23, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – A contractor was picked this week to help manage pre-construction work on Muskegon’s proposed 45,000-square-foot convention center.

Clark Construction Company, a Lansing-based contractor, will be paid $38,355 for pre-construction on the proposed $17 million convention center, which will sit on what is now Fourth Street between West Western Avenue and Shoreline Drive. The building will be flanked on either side by the L.C. Walker Arena and the downtown Holiday Inn, which will soon be rebranded as a Delta by Marriott...
I'm not sure about the design, which gives off a musty, 1970's vibe merged with some vaguely 21st-century design aesthetics. These schematic renderings are about four months old now though...











An earlier massing model -
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  #105  
Old Posted Feb 2, 2019, 2:29 PM
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Keeping the momentum going in Muskegon - there's more than $100M in projects scheduled to be completed or underway in 2019 - long article detailing a lot of different aspects of Muskegon's resurgence.

Quote:
Downtown Muskegon taking next steps toward revitalization
Justin Dawes | GRBJ
February 1, 2019

Community leaders are taking further steps toward revitalizing downtown Muskegon and establishing its lakeside identity. As laid out by the city’s Imagine Muskegon Lake plans, the downtown and area around the lake — from Pere Marquette Park in the west to the former B.C. Cobb power plant in the east — is undergoing continuous changes to centralize the lake after revitalization from decades of pollution that began in the 1800s logging era. With Muskegon Lake as the pinnacle, the southernmost shore’s Lakeside District is foreseen as the downtown center, the existing center to be known as the historic downtown, according to Dave Alexander, executive director of Downtown Muskegon Now...
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  #106  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2019, 3:53 AM
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$65M downtown Muskegon development to include hotel, housing and more
Justine Loften | MLive
February 28, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – An 8-acre parking lot on Morris Avenue in downtown Muskegon could be the site of a hotel by summer 2020 - and much more in the years to come. The parking lot between the Hume Office Building and the Social Security Administration building is the largest remaining parcel in the downtown that was purchased from the owner of the Muskegon Mall, which was demolished in 2003. Great Lakes Development Group, an up-and-coming Muskegon company, is first in line to purchase the Morris Avenue property from the Community Foundation for Muskegon County for $1.2 million, said Chris Benedict, co-owner of the development firm. The option expires at the end of April, but extensions are possible if a deal isn’t finalized by then...
Conceptual Rendering

Source: MLive | Courtesy Great Lakes Development Group
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  #107  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2019, 11:53 PM
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Muskegon entrepreneur accelerates plans for downtown building

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Construction is expected to start this summer, after phase one of the development at 351 W. Western Ave. is complete, said Chris Benedict, managing member of Great Lakes Development Group, which is behind the project.

Matt Gongalski, a Muskegon businessman who made his mark as a co-founder of Rad Dads’ Tacos & Tequila, plans to open two businesses that would occupy three of six floors in the second building.

Gongalski’s plans put phase two “in fast forward,” Benedict said.

The first phase is expected to be finished in May, he said. Construction on the second building is expected to start in July.

The six-floor, 47,760-square-foot buildings, which will be connected, are expected to cost about $7.7 million each, Benedict said.

The second phase is the left half
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  #108  
Old Posted Mar 7, 2019, 12:28 AM
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Delta hotel restaurant to be inspired by Muskegon’s lumber era

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MUSKEGON, MI – A restaurant coming to downtown Muskegon will play off the town’s booming lumber era.

Reimagining the restaurant inside the Holiday Inn Muskegon Harbor is part of $6 million in upgrades to the 8-story hotel that will result in a brand change to Delta by Marriott come May, said Muskegon-based entrepreneur Jon Rooks, who owns the Holiday Inn.


Beach restaurant overlooking Lake Michigan ‘is a hit’

Quote:
GRAND HAVEN, MI – A Lake Michigan beach restaurant that replaces an icon in Grand Haven is open for business.

Noto’s at the Bil-Mar, which replaces the landmark Bil-Mar Restaurant on Grand Haven City Beach, offers views of the sandy beach, big lake and the pier, complemented by beachy Italian food.


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  #109  
Old Posted Mar 8, 2019, 12:31 AM
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City approves plans for Muskegon Lake condos with marina access

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MUSKEGON, MI – A planned 55-unit condominium project with access to the Hartshorn Marina has been approved, and its developer hopes to begin the project in the spring.

Final plans for the Hartshorn Village development at property on West Western Avenue were recently approved by the Muskegon City Commission. The property is located between the marina and Fricano Place.


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  #110  
Old Posted Mar 14, 2019, 1:08 AM
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Vacant Harbor Theater to become retail suites, apartments

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MUSKEGON, MI – The hallmark Harbor Theater in Muskegon’s Lakeside Neighborhood may soon become a mixed-use building featuring retail shops and apartments.

The building’s owner, Richard Ghezzi of Ghezzi Investments, LLC, plans to rehabilitate the two-theater movie house at 1937 Lakeshore Dr. over the next 14 months to create nine apartments on the first and second floors with four spots for retail shops on the first floor, according to information provided to the Muskegon City Commission.


The $1.1 million project is expected to begin this fall, and will include some demolition work, new construction, utility upgrades and the creation of a courtyard stretching down the east side of the property.

Commissioners on Tuesday, March 12, granted Ghezzi a 12-year tax abatement through an obsolete property certificate to help complete the project. Property taxes will be frozen at 5 percent of the building’s taxable value through the term of the abatement.
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  #111  
Old Posted Apr 22, 2019, 12:31 AM
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$750K grant announced for residential, retail development in South Haven

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SOUTH HAVEN, MI — The South Haven Center, LLC has been awarded a $750,000 Michigan Community Revitalization Program performance-based grant from the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) for an upcoming project in downtown South Haven, State Rep. Beth Griffin of Mattawan announced.

South Haven Center, LLC, plans to construct a new three-story mixed-use building on a currently vacant parcel in downtown South Haven. The plan includes 18 residential units, retail or commercial space and parking for the residents and is expected to generate total capital investment of $4.5 million and create 10 full-time equivalent jobs, according to a news release from Griffin’s office.
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  #112  
Old Posted Jun 5, 2019, 3:36 PM
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I've fallen behind on some updates on the west side. Lots of activity going on right now. Notably, in Muskegon:

1. Construction on the new Convention Center is off to a rocky start. First, the county commission voted to omit the prevailing wage aspects of the construction contracts on April 30. The commission referenced other nearby counties that no longer typically enforce prevailing wage - Kent County, Ottawa County...stating that it is an antiquated practice (source: MLive). I don't disagree, but to me, this was also a clue that money was becoming a concern on the project. At the groundbreaking, held shortly after that decision on May 8, a group of about 60 union protesters stood peacefully nearby - but quite visible to the attendees of the ceremony - with pickets and an inflatable "fat cat." Where did they get that inflatable from - is it just something they keep stashed in a closet somewhere, and pull it out when they need it? Last week, the commission passed another cost-cutting resolution, this time to reduce the size of the center by 2,500 SF. According to MLive:

Quote:
City removes prevailing wage, shrinks size of downtown convention center due to cost concerns
Ben Solis | MLive
May 29, 2019

...Commissioners also voted Tuesday, May 28, to reduce the main 20,000 square-foot convention floor space by 2,500 square feet. The convention space reduction was proposed by city staff to trim rising construction costs that threaten to push the project over its $19.5 million top-line budget, said City Manager Frank Peterson...
The union stuff will dissipate, but rising construction costs and contractor labor shortages have been hurting projects all over the state. This project is going to be a rough one, I think. These are not the images you want associated with your groundbreaking...




Images Source: MLive | Kaylie Renie

2. In other (more positive) news, Western Place Condos is under construction at 241 and 251 W. Western Ave. (near the Farmers Market and HighPoint Flats). Did I miss this? It seems like it flew in under the radar. There was something about it in April 2018.

Quote:
14 new condos under construction near Muskegon Farmers Market
Ben Solis | MLive
May 21, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – Construction on 14 three-story condominiums has begun at property on West Western Avenue near the Muskegon Farmers Market in downtown Muskegon. Work recently began on Western Place condos, a new development by West Urban Properties LLC, owned by Grand Rapids developer Dave Dusendang. The condos are being built on two empty lots at 241 and 251 W. Western Ave...the plan is to construct tri-level condos with three bedrooms, 3 ½ bathrooms and finished garages. Construction is expected to be completed within the next seven to eight months, with exteriors to be finished by mid-August...





Source: MLive | Ben Solis

3. The downtown Holiday Inn will be rebranded as a Delta Hotel this month. More than just a name change, the rebranding comes with $8 million worth of upgrades, including three eating options. This is future-convention-center-adjacent, so it makes sense that the updates are happening now.

Quote:
Starbucks planned at downtown Muskegon Delta Hotel to open in June
Justine Lofton | MLive
May 13, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – A renovated downtown Muskegon hotel will take its new name in June, when its two restaurants and a Starbucks are also expected to open. The Holiday Inn Muskegon Harbor, 939 Third St., will be rebranded Delta Hotel by Marriott. Acquiring the “upper upscale” flag for the eight-story, 201-room hotel involved $6 million in renovations and $2 million in infrastructure repairs, including fixing the roof and HVAC system, said owner Jon Rooks...

Source: MLive | Kayla Renie
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  #113  
Old Posted Jun 5, 2019, 4:53 PM
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I don't think this was shared here yet:

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Mercy Health to open 5 floors of $291M Muskegon tower
Justine Lofton | MLive
April 22, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – Half of Mercy Health’s $291 million Muskegon medical tower is expected to open on Saturday, May 4. Floors five to nine will open that day, representing phase two of the gradual completion of the 10-story tower at the Mercy Health Muskegon Mercy Campus, according to a news release from Mercy Health. The garden level and first floor opened in December...
It is a great-looking facility. More photos at the article link.








Source: MLive | Corey Morse

And - this is pretty random - Holland gets a Yellow Brick Road:

Quote:
Construction begins on permanent Oz exhibit in Holland park
13 ON YOUR SIDE Staff
June 5, 2019

HOLLAND, Mich. - Holland is getting a permanent addition of the "Wizard of Oz" and construction begins Wednesday. The exhibit is going up in Centennial Park and will feature a yellow brick road and six bronze statues characters like the Scarecrow, Lion, Tinman and Dorothy.
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  #114  
Old Posted Jul 22, 2019, 1:31 PM
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Here's a quick blast of updates for Muskegon:

Quote:
Grocery store opens in downtown Muskegon to booming reception
Justine Lofton | MLive
July 19, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI - BoomTown Market in downtown Muskegon opened just in time for the biggest event of year. The convenience grocery store on the first floor of Lake View Lofts apartment building, 351 W. Western Ave., opened on Friday, July 19, during the Rebel Road and Bike Time motorcycle rally events. The rally runs through Sunday, July 21.

Source: Justine Lofton | MLive

After all the protesting, local union workers get their wishes granted -

Quote:
Local contractors will get leg up in Muskegon convention center bid process
Ben Solis | MLive
July 18, 2019

MUSKEGON COUNTY, MI – Muskegon officials and union leaders have worked out a deal to encourage the use of local labor to construct the $19.5 million downtown Muskegon convention center. The move follows the Muskegon County Board of Commissioners’ recent decision to nix a prevailing wage requirement that would have given laborers working on the project union wages...
Quote:
MCC to wrap $47.5M in facility improvements with 4th building opening
Justine Lofton | MLive
July 17, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – Muskegon Community College is on the cusp on completing a 10-year, $47.5 million initiative that updated and expanded its facilities for the community and the next generation of learners. The grand opening of the final building, the $9 million Arts and Music Center, is planned for 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 23, at the building on the main campus...

Source: Cory Morse | MLive

Lot of info about potential developments in the works here -

Quote:
Hometown developers plan for future of downtown Muskegon
Justine Lofton | MLive
July 11, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – As residents began moving into their new apartments at Lake View Lofts in downtown Muskegon this month, the building’s developers were already preparing for its second phase, and a huge project a block away. Chris Benedict and Joshua Canale, co-owners of Great Lakes Development Group, began planning Lake View Lofts, their first development, in 2014. Now, they not only have solidified plans for a second six-story Lake View Lofts building, but also an ambitious $65 million mixed-use project a block away...
Phase 1 of Lake View Lofts, nearing completion.

Source: Justine Lofton | MLive

Rendering of Phase 1 and Phase 2 of Lake View Lofts. Phase 2 would effectively double the development.

Source: MLive | Courtesy Great Lakes Development Group

Quote:
(related article on the Foundry Square development from earlier this year)

$65M downtown Muskegon development to include hotel, housing and more
Justine Lofton | MLive
February 28, 2019
Quote:
Muskegon approves housing development (The Docks)
Justin Dawes | GRBJ
July 5, 2019

Plans for a 240-unit housing development are underway between Lake Michigan and 1,000 feet of Muskegon Lake shoreline. The 80 acres of undeveloped land east of Pere Marquette Park is located on the former Pigeon Hill, a sand dune that was mined during World War II for metal castings. The property has been owned by Sand Products Corporation since the 1930s.

SPC began plans for the development a few years ago after it purchased the adjacent site of the former Bluffton Elementary School, according to Chuck Canestraight, SPC president. Once fully developed, he expects the total amount of added value to exceed $100 million...
The revised Site Plan that was approved

Source: MLive

Quote:
Trendy restaurant (Redmon's Kitchen and Bar) opens in historic downtown Muskegon building
Justine Lofton | MLive
July 1, 2019

MUSKEGON, MI – A restaurant providing a menu of what downtown Muskegon doesn’t offer elsewhere is open for business. Redmon’s Kitchen & Bar is on the first floor of NorthTown 794, 794 Pine St., a new business center in the former Al Perri furniture building. The newly renovated building also will host Rake Beer Project, Aldea Coffee and Capone’s Speakeasy and Pizzeria...

Source: Kayla Renie | MLive
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  #115  
Old Posted Aug 11, 2019, 12:30 PM
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Somehow I doubt that this will get any traction, but the Township is at least entertaining it.

Quote:
Dune advocates propose alternative Saugatuck marina design
Carolyn Muyskens | Holland Sentinel
August 8, 2019

SAUGATUCK TWP. — Rather than carve out a new basin off the Kalamazoo River, a local advocacy group has offered a suggestion to the developers of the NorthShore Saugatuck marina — put the boat slips directly in the river. The Saugatuck Dunes Coastal Alliance says its alternative marina design would be better for the environment, protect water quality and intrude less onto the historical remains of the lost village of Singapore. The group crafted this proposal in response to developers who are looking to create a boat basin north of the Kalamazoo River, which would provide space to dock 50 boats for vacation homes that are planned for a piece of property south of Saugatuck Dunes State Park...
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  #116  
Old Posted Aug 29, 2019, 11:10 PM
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Bar, restaurant among possible new uses for old downtown Muskegon building

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MUSKEGON, MI – A boarded-up building in downtown Muskegon could become a bustling commercial hub with several food service tenants, including a bar or a restaurant, according to the owners of the building.

Core Realty Partners and its development arm have plans to rehabilitate the building at 1208 8th St. for commercial use, said Bryan Bench, Core’s commercial manager. The project is estimated to cost $550,000.

^Nice thumb



Large-scale marijuana grow facility planned for vacant Muskegon County business park

Quote:
MUSKEGON COUNTY, MI – A 210-acre business park owned by Muskegon County may soon become a large-scale facility for growing marijuana.

The proposed grow operation, to be called Sensi Park, would be located in the vacant Muskegon County Business Park North in Dalton Township at the corner of Agard and Whitehall roads, according to county planning documents.

Representatives from db3, the company behind the project, recently submitted planning documents and a letter of intent to purchase the property from Muskegon County, according to documents provided to the Muskegon County Board of Commissioners.
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  #117  
Old Posted Sep 25, 2019, 10:35 PM
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State grant to help Benton Harbor Flats become a reality

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BENTON HARBOR — Efforts to renovate the former Harbor Center building in Benton Harbor got a $1.5 million boost from the state Tuesday.

The grant was awarded Tuesday to the Benton Harbor Flats project by the Michigan Strategic Fund, according to a news release from State Rep. Pauline Wendzel.

“I’m incredibly excited about this project,” Wendzel stated in the release. “I want to specifically thank the Cornerstone Alliance and Benton Harbor Flats LLC for their investment in Benton Harbor. This project will create 22 jobs and serve as a catalyst for future development in the heart of Benton Harbor.”

The money will be used to create 14 to 16 apartments on the second floor, with two commercial spaces on the first floor of the 20,000-square-foot building at the corner of Pipestone and Main streets, said Chris Fielding, CEO of Cressy Commercial Real Estate, the company doing the renovations.
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  #118  
Old Posted Nov 14, 2019, 11:19 PM
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^The other day I drove through downtown Benton Harbor and Benton Harbor Flats is under construction.

Unfortunate news out of Muskegon:

Seriously injured construction worker rescued off Mercy Hospital roof

Quote:
MUSKEGON, MI – A worker was seriously injured at the Mercy Hospital construction site in Muskegon Thursday afternoon.

The 22-year-old reportedly was struck in the head by a large construction aluminum construction beam just before 1 p.m. on Nov. 14.

Muskegon firefighters used a ladder truck to rescue the construction worker off the roof of the older portion of the hospital at 1500 E. Sherman Blvd. The rescue effort occurred near the outpatient entrance of Mercy Health’s Mercy Campus.
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