GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - Two West Michigan cities were promised aid from significant tax incentives on Tuesday through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC).
The incentives were approved for Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids by the Michigan Economic Growth Authority (MEGA), which is part of MEDC.
The Grand Rapids Brownfield Redevelopment Authority will use school and local tax capture -- taxes diverted to public development -- to the tune of $4,720,882 for the construction of an urban market near Wealthy Street and US-131.
"This is a piece of the puzzle that removes any uncertainty about this [urban market] moving forward," said Jay Fowler of the Downtown Development Authority.
The money would go to demolish six vacant buildings and put up a new 130,000 square-foot space for the urban market.
The space will include an outdoor seasonal market, an indoor market to be used year-round, and space for restaurants, educational facilities, and food processing and production facilities. The market would also feature a rooftop greenhouse.
A plan for the market was unveiled in August of 2010.
The plan for the urban market has been in the works for a year and a half and, according to a MEGA news release, is expected to generate $31 million in new investment and create up to 270 full-time jobs.
MEGA also allocated a large Michigan Business Tax credit of $3,183,746 to the Kalamazoo Exchange Project to redevelop a parking lot into an eight-story multi-use development including residential, office, and commercial space.
The project should encourage $28.8 million in new investment and create approximately 210 permanent full-time jobs.
"Today's brownfield redevelopment projects further our efforts to improve our communities by repurposing blighted, contaminated or functionally obsolete properties across the state," said Michael A. Finney, president and CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. "These incentives will help upgrade aged facilities, improve property values and bring new jobs to our communities."
MEGA also approved incentives to help redevelop Redford High School in Detroit (about $9.9 million) and construct an addition to the Dexter Wellness Center in Washtenaw County (about $240,000).
GRAM Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony in front of a festive downtown crowd at Rosa Parks Circle Friday night.
Two people were taken to the hospital after one vehicle crossed the center line, causing a head-on crash in Ada Township Friday night.
Investigators in Montcalm County are working to determine what led up to a deadly crash.