Custer Finds Heartside Location

February 19, 2004
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GRAND RAPIDS — Custer Office Environments, a West Michigan Steelcase dealer, plans to convert an aging warehouse located at 217 Grandville St. SW in the Heartside neighborhood, into showroom and office space.

Putting the 93-year-old, 54,500-square foot structure back into use is a brownfield project approved recently by the Michigan Economic Development Corp.

According to an announcement from Don Jakeway, MEDC’s president and CEO, the project received approval to capture more than $343,800 in state and local taxes to fund demolition and street and sidewalk upgrades.

The city of Grand Rapids, through its brownfield development authority, will capture approximately $177,849 in local property taxes for the project.

The project is one of three which MEDC announced yesterday, the others being in Detroit and Sterling Heights.

The Sterling Heights project was a headline-maker in Lansing and southeast Michigan because the company involved — Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Climate Control Inc. — is headquartered in Franklin, Ind., and was considering expanding in that state.

But thanks in part to a $1.3 million Single Business Tax credit proffered by MEDC, the firm decided to expand in Sterling Heights, which also is expected to give it a nine-year real and personal property tax abatement amounting to $468,000.

MEDC expects the project to create 75 new jobs directly by 2014 with another 45 jobs being generated by the multiplier effect.

The third project, in the city of Detroit, will enable Standard Federal Bank to use a brownfield tax capture of about $241,500 to prepare blighted property for construction of a new 5,000-square-foot branch.

All told, MEDC said the three projects would help generate or retain 180 Michigan jobs.           

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