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About Sparty97

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    Grand Rapids, MI

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  1. Village of Ada - Complete Makeover

    I stopped in this morning to grab some coffee from Rowsters. It has some of the same feel as the Plainfield store but a lot more light and open space. Decent beer selection (like Plainfield) and they had the same wall of bulk food (like Plainfield). I didn't check out Fish Lads or Carver's.
  2. Amazon looking for a city to put HQ2

    The direct route requirements were New York, Washington D.C, Seattle and the Bay area. GRR has direct flights to New York (LaGuardia and Newark) and Washington D.C. (Nat'l and Dulles) but it lacks the direct Seattle and Bay area flights. I could see those two cities added if they came, but I don't know if one of the requirements is that they are already established routes. We do have direct flights to Phoenix and Las Vegas, I imagine it would not take a lot more effort to get those established. The cost of living, proximity to the Switch datacenter, proximity to Lake Michigan/beaches, cool beer/art scene, etc. could help.
  3. Suburban Projects

    I'm assuming that the (P) means proposed? That would mean that only Neruorcore and Chow Hound are confirmed/signed.
  4. Village of Ada - Complete Makeover

    I keep hearing of business after business in Ada shutting down. Saburba being one of the latest due to construction, traffic flow, etc. Their revenues were down something like 35-40%. I've also heard that a few other successful businesses, that will be losing their current location, are researching leases in buildings outside of Ada due the drastic increase in costs with the new construction. I'm wondering how long after construction is complete before Ada can get back to where they were a year or two ago. Is there a lot of interest from other businesses to move in??
  5. I'm sure that app is great but that only works for people that are downtown randomly. The issue is that people who work downtown (9-10 hours a day) don't want to pay for parking by the hour or by the day. $151/month for the Pearl Ionia is a lot cheaper than paying $18/day for the 20-22 days a month ($360 to $396) we're there.
  6. Management Business Solutions moves out of downtown partly due to parking. Moving Floriza Genautis, MBS owner and founder, estimated the former space was about 1,200 square feet. The firm’s eight employees and two interns didn’t have enough desk space, and the firm’s planning to grow its staff. Genautis also said the lack of access to affordable and convenient parking was a factor in the decision to move. “As we increase employees and start hiring…we pay for parking for everyone,” Genautis said. “It’s gotten a little harder for employees to go to DASH lots, especially in the winter time. It was making it harder to attract talent. It was a small portion of the decision but not entirely.” She said the decision to leave downtown was not easy. “We love Grand Rapids, and we wanted to stay there, but there was a shortage of properties available to purchase,” Genautis said. “We looked at downtown, near downtown....I love downtown and being able to be there and be walking distance to clients, festivals, events, but there wasn’t anything available. We needed parking and space.”
  7. My wife gives me grief about this all the time... I think the original name of the supercenter's was Meijer's Thrifty Acres .... or that is how I remember it. Everyone I know from the olden days adds the "S" when they say the name... Also, one of the originals was called Meijer's Thrift Super Market (see below). I grew up just outside of Ionia (3rd Meijers store after Greenville and Cedar Springs...). I've also seen that they used names such as Meijer's Super Market and Meijer's Thrift Market.
  8. So, we considered moving one of our DR sites to Switch early last fall. We toured the facility and didn't think the pyramid would be ready in time for us (Late 2016). We also got the impression that the pyramid building was taking a lot of new engineering since it wasn't purpose built for a data center (with the exception of the space Steelcase had used). They were building out racks in a very high ceiling room with lots of windows... They also did a lot of things "for show". An example is that they had wallpaper that made it look like walls were re-inforced concrete. The security guards looked like they were ready for a gun fight (think SWAT team) which in the cybersecurity world is not the biggest vulnerability... Our needs for this co-location data center was small (3-4 racks) and we got the impression they really were focused on the very large customers like Netflix, Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook, etc. and not focused on smaller clients (ie. their response to our questions was very delayed or nonexistent. We will definitely reconsider them once they have their purpose built buildings done (and our contracts with other colocation providers are up for renewal). I did like the fact they had lots of workspace recovery options and I think this could be a real cool spot for an office if you were a cloud company.
  9. Village of Ada - Complete Makeover

    Here is a drone video just released by the Ada Business Association...
  10. Village of Ada - Complete Makeover

    We love Saburba also (great food and great people), but we are only in downtown Ada every so often. I'm hoping that once some of the road construction lessens, then the foot traffic will find them again.
  11. Not sure that Ann Arbor is the best example. Ann Arbor built a new ramp (677 spots) in 2013 and still have a multi-year wait list for almost all of the lots. They are now worried about growth and considering more parking. The fact there are 40,000 students attending UMAA and living in downtown Ann Arbor does skew the public transportation numbers a bit...
  12. People in suburbs are not going to take a bus to work. They will just select jobs outside of downtown where they can drive to. Time is precious and people move to Grand Rapids in part because "everything is only 20 minutes away". This seems like a disaster waiting to happen. There will be less parking spots when some of these construction projects take off (example: Celebration Cinema and Lots 4/5).
  13. I saw this the other day. I'm still not 100% sure where Area 8 and 9 are. I'm almost certain they are not right downtown. So, essentially, if you get a job downtown, you will have to take a bus or have someone drop you off. Not a good situation to be in. Thank goodness I already have my monthly pass.
  14. East Beltline Developments

    Fair enough. :-) I guess I was revealing the fact I've looked at the Lormax Stern site at least 20 times trying to figure out what was possibly coming "soon" over the last 3-4 years.
  15. East Beltline Developments

    I'm not sure this equates to semi traffic down a narrow road with no turnaround. This is a fast food restaurant on the corner of 2 very busy roads that already has drive-throughs and 38 restaurants or cafe options within a 1/2 mile. The traffic isn't going to spike even 5%. It is likely the same people who are going to Subway, Wendy's, Kitchen 67, Firehouse, Qdoba, Pieology or Potbelly right now. If designed right, the traffic would back up into the Celebration property and not onto the 2 main roads. I'm sure a design could be made to satisfy specific concerns. Could you have 2 or even 3 lanes to consolidate the traffic onto the property? What about something that doubles down on drive through like separate grill and sandwich stations for the drive through? If the board had come out with some specific numbers on how many chick-fil-a needed to handle in an hour, etc. then I would feel like they really were interested in working with Chick-Fil-A but their reaction didn't seem to be built on actual data. Drive through accounts for 50-60% of CFA's revenue (for essentially the same footprint). It is like asking Starbucks to only sell coffee after 10 am. I'm not saying they wouldn't be successful with that model, and I have no idea if they would consider that option, but the drive through is a big part of their draw. The fact there is a long line of people who only want to get their food via a drive through says there is a strong demand for this type of service. I live out by this intersection and have been frustrated by the lack of developments as promised by developers and now that a great company with products in demand want to invest there, they are shot down. Something doesn't add up.