On July 31, 2019, four projects that redevelop brownfields and activate underutilized downtown properties—together expected to generate a total investment of $12.4 million and create 88 jobs in Michigan—received support from the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF).
“These projects will lead to new business growth, revitalized communities and more and better jobs for our residents. We’re pleased to work with our local partners and support these investments,” said Jeff Mason, CEO, Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the state’s chief marketing and business attraction arm that administers programs and performs due diligence on behalf of the MSF.
“We’re pleased to support these business expansion projects in Shiawassee County. Transforming underutilized property for future business growth and assisting the expansion of an established company in Vernon Township demonstrate the work we’re doing to bring good jobs to area residents and new economic activity to communities,” Mason added.
WB Vacation Properties, LLC plans to redevelop a blighted and vacant hardware building into a mixed-use development in the heart of downtown Cheboygan. The project will rehabilitate the lower level into two new commercial spaces and the upper level into six market-rate apartments. The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $1.5 million and create eight full-time equivalent jobs, resulting in MSF approval of a $490,538 Michigan Community Revitalization Program performance-based grant.
The Cheboygan Brownfield Redevelopment Authority received approval of a brownfield work plan including local and school tax capture in the amount of $330,128 for the alleviation of brownfield conditions at the site. Of that amount, $178,435 in state and $141,693 in local tax revenue over the next 30 years was approved. The city of Cheboygan has also approved a 12-year Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Act abatement valued at $86,391 in support of the project.
The County of Shiawassee Brownfield Redevelopment Authority received MSF approval of a brownfield plan including $988,500 in local and school tax capture to support a speculative building development project that will be located on M-71 in Vernon Township.
The project will redevelop property that is currently covered in large diameter-concrete culverts that prevent business expansion. A planned project following cleanup includes construction of a speculative 100,000-square-foot manufacturing facility that will include office space and loading bays. The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $7.5 million and create 40 full-time equivalent jobs. The tax capture consists of $617,911 in state and $370,589 in local taxes, which will be used to alleviate the brownfield conditions at the site.
“We are very grateful for the support received from the Michigan Strategic Fund, which is a true catalyst in turning this blighted industrial property into a highly productive space that will create jobs and investment in our community,” said Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership President/CEO Justin Horvath. “Special thanks to Vernon Township, the Shiawassee County Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, Shiawassee County Board of Commissioners, AKT Peerless Environmental Services and state Representative Ben Frederick for their leadership in moving this project forward.”
Gemini Capital Management V, LLC plans to reactivate the second story and upgrade the façade of a prominent building in downtown Alma. The project will include installing new windows for the storefront, upgrading signage, and re-bricking the façade along the alleyway. The second story will be converted from a blighted, functionally obsolete space into four market-rate residential apartments.
The project is expected to generate a private investment of $421,664, will serve to reactivate the traditional downtown, and lead to new economic activity in the area. As a result, the project has been awarded a $316,534 Michigan Community Revitalization Program performance-based grant.
The city of Alma has approved a 12-year Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Act abatement valued at $198,888 in support of the project. The city is also engaged with MEDC’s Redevelopment Ready Communities program.
Great Lakes Fusion, LLC was founded in 1998 to serve the landfill market through the fusion welding of high-density polyethylene pipe and its installation. The company now excavates and builds new cells at landfills, drills collection wells for the collection of landfill gas, and installs the pipe systems for collection. The company has also developed proprietary products for the landfill market.
Great Lakes Fusion is looking to expand its business and add new equipment at its existing footprint in Vernon Township to begin production of a new hard fusion-welded product. The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $2.65 million and create 40 jobs, resulting in a $250,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant.
“Our family of companies has called Shiawassee County home since its inception,” said Great Lakes Family of Companies Business Development Manager Joe Libby. “We are thrilled to provide high-quality jobs to our team and through the assistance of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership we will continue our growth through innovation and hard work.”
The Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership offered to assist the company with finding candidates for the new jobs.
“The Great Lakes team is making a major investment in their business and property in Vernon Township, and we are grateful for their commitment to our community. We are also very thankful for the support received from MEDC, which will help to accelerate their job growth here in Shiawassee County,” said Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership President/CEO Justin Horvath.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy.
Featured photo (by Bobak Ha’Eri via Wikipedia) shows the Kingston Theater in downtown Cheboygan.