Economic Development and Technology

Neighborhood launches website

August 14, 2015
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West Side CID
The West Side website brings together the three business districts - West Leonard, West Fulton and Stockbridge. Photo via WestSideGR.org

A Grand Rapids neighborhood recently launched a website that it hopes will help support the existing businesses, residents and organizations in the area, as well as attract newcomers.

The new West Side website, brings together the neighborhood’s three business districts — West Leonard, Stockbridge and West Fulton — which make up the Corridor Improvement District, or CID.

The website provides an introduction for outsiders to the area’s three distinct neighborhoods, while also serving as a tool for existing businesses to promote themselves.

Business tools

Michael Lomonaco, West Side CID chair and director of Open Systems Technologies, said the new website includes a business directory and events calendar that businesses can utilize for marketing.

He said businesses are able to create their own profile for the business directory and submit upcoming events they wish to highlight.

“Things are changing fast so we want the business owners to have opportunities for promotion,” Lomonaco said.

Branding strategy

The website is part of an overall branding strategy developed recently by the CID board to help promote businesses and investment in the corridor.

“The West Side has this deep-rooted history and tribe culture, but within each business district there are differences,” Lomonaco said.

He said the CID board wanted to create a brand and marketing strategy that honored each neighborhood’s distinct history and culture, while also promoting the change and momentum taking shape in each and providing an overall community arch.

The CID board has adopted the tagline Welcome West for its campaign in an effort to show that everyone is welcome.

“The West Side is the most diverse area in the city,” Lomonaco said.

Enhancing community

In addition to the website and branding, the CID plans to host quarterly meetings for West Side business owners that will allow the board to gain a greater understanding of investment priorities.

Lomonaco said feedback so far has focused on beautification and cleanliness efforts and investments in more bike corrals.

Overall, Lomonaco said, the goal is to drive West Side investment and build an even stronger community.

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