©2017 Michigan Economic Development Corporation

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MSF-approved projects attract residents, capital investment to Kalamazoo, Lansing, Alpena, Dearborn and Romulus

Michigan Strategic Fund approved on Nov. 24 business expansions and community improvement projects expected to generate nearly $120.6 million in new investments and create 258 jobs. The MSF board approves grants and loans administered by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, which promotes economic development opportunities, including retaining and attracting business to the state. The projects include:

The city of Lansing's Brownfield Redevelopment Authority has received approval of $25,195,280 in local and school tax capture for the SkyVue on Michigan project in Lansing. The project will redevelop a former auto dealership on East Michigan Avenue into a viable, mixed-use development with 341 market-rate apartments, commercial space and a multi-level parking structure. 

The tax capture will alleviate brownfield conditions at the site and make it suitable for redevelopment. The project will be undertaken by Lansing Properties I LLC and will generate a total capital investment of $80 million and create nine full-time jobs.

NoMi Developers LLC plans to rehabilitate and repurpose a distressed industrial building in the River’s Edge district located between the Kalamazoo River and downtown Kalamazoo. The completed project will consist of a mixed-use development with restaurant space and 47 residential units. The project will generate a total capital investment of nearly $4.5 million and create five full-time jobs, resulting in a $665,000 Michigan Community Revitalization Program performance-based grant.  

In addition, the city of Kalamazoo's Brownfield Redevelopment Authority has received approval of $605,000 in local and school tax capture to alleviate brownfield conditions at the site and prepare it for development. The city of Kalamazoo is also providing a $250,000 loan from its economic initiative fund.

The city of Alpena has been awarded $891,591 in Community Development Block Grant funds for façade improvements needed for the Alpena Furniture and Flooring building and the Old Owl restaurant in downtown Alpena. 

This funding will be part of a façade/housing grant agreement in the amount of $1,291,591, comprised of $891,591 from the MSF and $400,000 from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority.

Alpena Furniture and Flooring is a long-standing retail operation in the city. The building will undergo historic renovations and interior improvements that will create 10 residential apartments in the building. The Old Owl restaurant, also a longtime stakeholder in the city, is currently closed due to change of ownership. The new owner plans to make major renovations to both the exterior and interior of the restaurant.

The two projects are expected to generate a total private investment of more than $1 million.

Rivian Automotive LLC, established in 2009, is an automotive design company focused on creating software to be used in next-generation vehicle design. The company plans to establish a research and development center in the city of Dearborn, investing nearly $29.5 million and creating 174 jobs. As a result, the company has been awarded a $1.77 million Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. Michigan was chosen over competing sites in California and Florida. 

The city of Dearborn has offered support to the project in the form of property tax abatement. Individuals interested in career opportunities with Rivian should visit www.rivian.com.

The city of Romulus' Brownfield Redevelopment Authority received approval of $1,283,181 in local and school tax capture for non-environmental activities associated with the Packaging Specialties, Inc. (PackSpec) expansion in Romulus. 

PackSpec is at capacity due to rapid growth and plans to renovate a building near its current facility to consolidate its operations under one roof. The project will generate a total capital investment of $5.6 million and create 50 jobs within the first two years, with an additional 20 jobs added within 10 years. Michigan was chosen over a competing site in Ohio.

The tax capture will assist with lead and asbestos abatement activities and substantial exterior and interior demolition costs, as well as demolition costs related to upgrades to heating, electrical and plumbing.

The city of Romulus has an Industrial Facilities Tax (IFT) abatement agreement with the developer which will cap the actual local and school tax capture at the maximum amount approved for reimbursement, less the imputed value of the IFT abatement.

The project is also requesting $86,175 in tax increment financing for environmental activities from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

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