New Madison Square Housing

October 11, 2004
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GRAND RAPIDS — A new residential and commercial project is underway in Madison Square, a business district on the city’s southeast side.

LuDell-White Development LLC is putting up a pair of adjacent three-story buildings that will offer nine townhouses, three apartments, and 4,600 square feet of commercial ground-floor space.

The project at 1221 Madison Ave. should be finished in the spring.

The townhomes are three-bedroom units with slightly more than 1,900 square feet of space and come with a two-stall garage, a washer and dryer, and a microwave oven.

The apartments will have two bedrooms, more than 1,100 square feet of living space, two covered carports, and a washer, dryer and microwave oven.

Rental prices for the apartments will be made known in January, about the same time the lease rates for the townhouses will be revealed. Both are expected to be affordable.

LuDell-White Development is also planning to offer townhome tenants a lease-to-purchase program that will give them a chance to buy the units after 15 years.

“This housing project will be a critical component in the continued revitalization of the Madison Square neighborhood and will provide the tenants with a great opportunity to establish credit and eventually build equity,” said James White, managing partner of LuDell-White.

The project also offers commercial space on the first floor of the apartment building.

The space has been integrated into the city’s Renaissance Zone, meaning that personal and real property taxes, along with the Single Business Tax, have been exempted from the site.

In addition, the city has given LuDell-White Development a fixed tax rate for the housing units in order to stave off an increase in property taxes.

“The quality and design of this mixed-use project will help to improve the aesthetics along Madison, south of Hall,” White said.

The Madison Square branch of the public library, the Madison Square Shopping Mall, and the Browning-Claytor Medical Clinic, operated by Saint Mary’s Health Care, will border the buildings.

Isaac V. Norris & Associates PC, a local architectural firm, designed the project.

Rockford Construction Co. of Belmont is managing the construction end.

“We are very pleased to partner with LuDell-White on this important project,” said Michael VanGessel, president of Rockford Construction.

“We have a shared vision and that is improving the quality of life in Grand Rapids by doing all that we can to breathe new life into some of the city’s most treasured neighborhoods.”

LuDell-White and Millennium Realty & Development LLC pooled their resources to form LuDell-White Development. LuDell-White develops, funds and manages residential and commercial ventures.

Bradford Mathis and Lisa Mathis operate Millennium Realty.

VanGessel and John Wheeler started Rockford Construction in 1987. Since then the duo have added the Rockford Development Group LLC. Rockford has over 130 employees and offices in Belmont and downtown Grand Rapids.

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