Commentary on the news that's shaping West Michigan.


City has little time to ponder what is already done

January 30, 2015
“The $1 billion in investments has changed the Michigan Street corridor persona to the Medical Mile and changed the face of several neighborhoods, especially as continued investment currently in discussion jumps north of the I-196 Ford Freeway.” Read More

Black-owned business numbers and mentors offer prescription for report

January 23, 2015
Grand Rapids’ second-to-last ranking by Forbes.com regarding economic conditions for African-Americans was a “shock wave” in the city, unless you happen to be African-American. Read More

Heartwell’s call for additional climate action by private sector sets new bar

January 17, 2015
Grand Rapids Mayor George Heartwell outlined his priorities for the city in his annual — and last — address, once again challenging both the private and public sectors to accomplish new objectives related to environmental preservation issues. Read More

Less competition cited as reason for dramatic health cost increases

January 9, 2015
For decades employers in West Michigan have enjoyed lower costs for health care than peers anywhere in Michigan and generally across the United States. Read More

Arts and sports fuel GR area’s economic growth

January 2, 2015
Best wishes for the New Year do not ring hollow as 2015 dawns, and that may be especially true for the West Michigan region. Read More

Snyder’s ‘talent agency’ critical for continued business growth

December 26, 2014
The Business Journal review of 2014 business and economic activity is distinctive in the publication’s 32-year history for the diverse business sectors represented and the depth or strength of growth. Read More

Improve Michigan’s education outcomes and systems

December 19, 2014
Year-end statistical analysis and 2015 projections certainly provide good news for merrymaking, but it may be short-lived rather than a “new era” of prosperity. Read More

2025 goal: Educated and trained workforce

December 12, 2014
As winter graduates cross public stages this month, Talent 2025 released its most comprehensive report on current and future needs of employers in the 13-county West Michigan region, providing a map from that public stage to careers and jobs. Read More

Prompt action is welcome in wake of grand jury decisions

December 5, 2014
Grand Rapids city staff has agreed to provide citizens with recommendations in the next two weeks related to the concerns and ideas presented in meetings with the Grand Rapids NAACP, facilitated by LINC Community Revitalization, in the wake of a Dec. 3 New York grand jury decision not to indict a police officer for wrongdoing in the choking death of Eric Garner. Read More

Westside CID underscores need for county economic policy review

November 28, 2014
As the Thanksgiving celebrations drew near, the Kent County Board of Commissioners “opted out” yet again from participation in Corridor Improvement District economic development initiative, this time for Grand Rapids Westside district, which encompasses three business districts to create the largest CID in the city. Read More