Construction, Government, and Real Estate

City commissioners to get first look at new development

New projects would fill Mid Towne Village on Medical Mile.

May 3, 2013
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Grand Rapids city commissioners will learn about a new $31 million project proposed for the northeast side of town next week when they hold a public hearing on revising a nine-year-old brownfield plan.

Third Coast Development Partners wants to add a hotel and an office building to two parking lots in the Mid Towne Village development near the intersection of College Avenue and Michigan Street. The new structures would complete the development, which already has attracted $37 million in investments and features the Women’s Health Center and Park Row Condominiums.

“To date, $37 million has been invested in the project. Thirty-three residential units have been built and approximately 300 new jobs have been created,” said Kara Wood, city economic development director.

Dave Levitt and Brad Rosely, Third Coast partners, now want to put a 94,000-square-foot hotel and parking ramp on one of the available lots and a 30,000-square-foot office building with underground parking on the other.

The total investment in the project’s second phase has been estimated at $31 million, with the 149-room hotel accounting for nearly $25 million and the office structure about $6 million.

“The anticipated investment in phase two of the project is $31 million, bringing the total investment at the property to $68 million. The developer estimates that the second phase of the project could result in the retention of approximately 50 jobs and the creation of 70 new jobs, bringing total employment at the property to approximately 420,” said Wood.

Third Coast was awarded a brownfield for the project in 2004 because the Mid Towne Village property, then an aging residential area, met the state’s definition of being blighted. At the time, the firm had brownfield eligible costs of $3.4 million, and it has received $2.6 million in tax-increment financing so far to recoup that cost. The remainder is due by 2017.

This phase of the project contains nearly $7.5 million of eligible brownfield costs, with most of that coming from the construction of the hotel’s parking deck and below-ground parking for the office building. Both will be privately owned and qualify for a tax-increment reimbursement under the state’s brownfield act because both are part of a project.

Third Coast is also hoping to get funding for the project from the state’s Community Revitalization Program, and the tax-increment financing plan will serve as the local match for that request should Lansing approve its application.

If commissioners revise the brownfield, the city will receive an estimated $127,500 in property taxes from the project and new income taxes of $50,500 annually.

Third Coast hopes to begin construction on the hotel this year and expects it to be completed in two years. Work on the office building is targeted to get going in 2015 and take a year to finish.

Members of the city’s Brownfield Redevelopment Authority approved the revised plan last month.

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