Bay City achieves MEDC’s Redevelopment Ready Communities “Essentials” status

Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Designation signals communities have identified redevelopment goals, created a master plan for the future



LANSING, Mich. – For its efforts in establishing a more streamlined development process and overall community development vision, the City of Bay City achieved the Redevelopment Ready Communities (RRC) Essentials designation under the new RRC 2.0 framework, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) announced today.


Redevelopment Ready Communities is a voluntary initiative which empowers communities to shape their future as they strive to become RRC Certified by building a foundation of planning, zoning, and economic development best practices and integrating them into their everyday functions and was launched statewide in 2013. RRC promotes communities to be development ready and competitive in today’s economy by actively engaging stakeholders and proactively planning, making them more attractive for projects that create places where people want to live, work, and invest.

Based on feedback from communities and other stakeholders, MEDC evolved the RRC toolkit in February 2021 to include two different designations: “Essentials” and “Certified.” Communities can now determine which path is most appropriate for their needs based on capacity, community goals, and other local factors. Reaching the RRC Essentials designation is a formal recognition that a community has a vision for the future and the fundamental practices in place to get there.

“We applaud Bay City for achieving Essentials status,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of Economic Development Incentives and Services Michele Wildman. “Bay City has identified its desired direction for the future and has a plan to achieve its goals for the community. We look forward to building upon our relationship with the city and supporting its continued economic development efforts.”

To achieve the Essentials designation, Bay City worked to incorporate all the key documents and practices to provide a predictable development experience and meet local planning and zoning responsibilities under Michigan law. This includes updating their internal process documents, updating their website, and reviewing their Zoning Ordinance and Master Plans for improvements. The city’s efforts have produced high-quality documents and processes that will continue to generate value. Bay City has future plans to pursue full RRC Certification now that they have reached the Essentials designation.

“While a voluntary initiative, I am so proud of the work that was put in by our City Staff and the support from the City Commission in obtaining a Redevelopment Ready Community certification," said City Manager Dana Muscott. "Being named as an RRC will only further the City’s efforts to incorporate approachable and streamlined planning, zoning, and economic development practices, which in turn will allow for greater economic growth in the City of Bay City.”

“Becoming development ready and competitive in today’s economy speaks volumes for economic growth opportunities," said Mayor Kathleen Newsham. "I am excited to see the City receiving a designation that has been worked hard on to achieve. Building business and developer confidence in efficient processes will allow the City to continue to grow into not only an attractive place for investment, but also a place in which people want to live, work, and play.”

To date, the MEDC has formally recognized 72 Michigan communities in all corners of the state at the Certified level and 20 at the Essentials level. These communities have qualified as “thoroughly prepared” when it comes to planning and zoning, to remove traditional barriers and promote opportunities for prospective investors. To see the entire list of Redevelopment Ready Communities, visit here.



About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

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. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.