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EastownLeo

Techshop GR - Coming?

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Looks like its coming if they can get investment.

 

Where could a space like this be located?

 

http://invest.techshop.ws/TS_GrandRapids.html

 

http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2013/09/23/techshop-plans-grand-rapids-location-out-of-60-million-investment-offering/

 

http://www.mitechnews.com/articles.asp?id=16138

 

I have heard some rumors.

 

Surprised this has not been mentioned.

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The "Tatum" building on Wealthy.

 

It's huge, and I think is still a machine shop of some sort. It looks like you would have plenty of space for building, labs, and even a classroom. The amount of DIY folks in the area will definitely make this a good location. And it doesnt hurt that the Elk Brewery is right next door for after hours.  :thumbsup:  

 

Also it is located right down the street from an elementary school. Lots of opportunity for GRPS cross-activity there as well.

 

Now it's just a matter of offering the right price for it. The owner might be ready to sell....I hope.

post-3465-0-73352300-1409259180_thumb.jp

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I hadn't heard anything about this.  I guess I haven’t been paying attention but why should I, I’m happily retired.  
 
Curiously in the various Techshop web sites, they talk about a new Grand Rapids location coming soon and they are asking for people to invest but they don’t talk about who might be involved locally.  So is this real or maybe it’s just a way to separate some would be venture capitalists from their retirement nest eggs?  I did some easy Google research to find out and it doesn't appear to be a scam.  Here’s what I found:
  
Crain’s Detroit talks about the local GR “makerspaces” and spreads the rumor that it’s Rick DeVos behind it:
 

http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20140209/NEWS/302099997/makerspace-movement-brings-invention-and-some-contention#

 

This article mentions other local “makerspaces” and towards the bottom mentions Techshop but just quotes the Crain’s Detroit article without adding anything more:

 

http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2014/03/thinkers_geeks_say_grand_rapid.html

 

This article thinks Rick DeVos is behind it too but they are confused and think he’s the DeVos that ran for governor:

 

http://venturebeat.com/2013/09/23/jobs-act-techshop/

 

This is kind of the best, it’s the meeting minutes of “City of Grand Rapids SmartZones Local Development Financing Authority (LDFA)” from 11-15-2013 (the Techshop stuff is buried deep in the document so you will need to do search within it):

 

http://grcity.us/design-and-development-services/Economic-Development/Smartzone/SZ%20Minutes%2011-15-13.pdf

 

from deep in the above link "Ms. Wood stated that the site at 801 Ionia has been identified for TechShop."

 

and here's 801 Ionia:

 

https:[email protected],-85.669258,3a,75y,267.7h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1stpqPYNros70EtTXnkGQaxQ!2e0

 

Edited by walker

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I hadn't heard anything about this.  I guess I haven’t been paying attention but why should I, I’m happily retired.  
 
Curiously in the various Techshop web sites, they talk about a new Grand Rapids location coming soon and they are asking for people to invest but they don’t talk about who might be involved locally.  So is this real or maybe it’s just a way to separate some would be venture capitalists from their retirement nest eggs?  I did some easy Google research to find out and it doesn't appear to be a scam.  Here’s what I found:
  
Crain’s Detroit talks about the local GR “makerspaces” and spreads the rumor that it’s Rick DeVos behind it:
 

http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20140209/NEWS/302099997/makerspace-movement-brings-invention-and-some-contention#

 

This article mentions other local “makerspaces” and towards the bottom mentions Techshop but just quotes the Crain’s Detroit article without adding anything more:

 

http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2014/03/thinkers_geeks_say_grand_rapid.html

 

This article thinks Rick DeVos is behind it too but they are confused and think he’s the DeVos that ran for governor:

 

http://venturebeat.com/2013/09/23/jobs-act-techshop/

 

This is kind of the best, it’s the meeting minutes of “City of Grand Rapids SmartZones Local Development Financing Authority (LDFA)” from 11-15-2013 (the Techshop stuff is buried deep in the document so you will need to do search within it):

 

http://grcity.us/design-and-development-services/Economic-Development/Smartzone/SZ%20Minutes%2011-15-13.pdf

 

from deep in the above link "Ms. Wood stated that the site at 801 Ionia has been identified for TechShop."

 

and here's 801 Ionia:

 

https:[email protected],-85.669258,3a,75y,267.7h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1stpqPYNros70EtTXnkGQaxQ!2e0

 

 

 

I don't think Jack Buchanan owns it anymore.

Kent County records says it was sold in 2011 to 801 IONIA LLC @ 5540 GLENWOOD HILS PKWY SE.

That would mean Rockford Construction?

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Sounds a lot like Geek Group to me. Or GRMakers at 401 Hall St. Is there a difference?

 

http://www.techshop.ws/facilities_and_amenities.html

 

https://www.grmakers.com/

 

http://thegeekgroup.org/

 

It can't hurt to have more offerings like this but the fact that they have to raise $2.5 - $3.0 Million just to open their doors does not bode well. I wish them luck!

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Sounds a lot like Geek Group to me. Or GRMakers at 401 Hall St. Is there a difference?

 

http://www.techshop.ws/facilities_and_amenities.html

 

https://www.grmakers.com/

 

http://thegeekgroup.org/

 

It can't hurt to have more offerings like this but the fact that they have to raise $2.5 - $3.0 Million just to open their doors does not bode well. I wish them luck!

GRMakers and Geek Group would not have the ability to do something like this.

These are very manufacturing focused, Huge emphasis on high end machines and education.

 

The geek group is a non-profit that usually gets its machinery from donations. Companies replacing old equipment give the old stuff to geek group probably as a write-off.

 

GRMakers is slowly building up capabilities but they serve different purposes.  I know that Geek Group finds Techshop to be a threat and have stated they will move out of GR if Techshop comes to town.

 

"Chris Boden, CEO of The Geek Group makerspace, was less moderate of his assessment of TechShop and more ambitious about his nonprofit's goals than GR Makers.

Boden calls TechShop "the great Satan." 

"They will destroy community hacker spaces wherever they go," he said. "And if they come into the Grand Rapids area, they will destroy GR Makers and The Geek Group overnight." 

Boden said his organization will fight TechShop for members or "move to where TechShop isn't.""

 

http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20140209/NEWS/302099997/makerspace-movement-brings-invention-and-some-contention#

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GRMakers and Geek Group would not have the ability to do something like this.

These are very manufacturing focused, Huge emphasis on high end machines and education.

 

The geek group is a non-profit that usually gets its machinery from donations. Companies replacing old equipment give the old stuff to geek group probably as a write-off.

 

GRMakers is slowly building up capabilities but they serve different purposes.  I know that Geek Group finds Techshop to be a threat and have stated they will move out of GR if Techshop comes to town.

 

"Chris Boden, CEO of The Geek Group makerspace, was less moderate of his assessment of TechShop and more ambitious about his nonprofit's goals than GR Makers.

Boden calls TechShop "the great Satan." 

"They will destroy community hacker spaces wherever they go," he said. "And if they come into the Grand Rapids area, they will destroy GR Makers and The Geek Group overnight." 

Boden said his organization will fight TechShop for members or "move to where TechShop isn't.""

 

http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article/20140209/NEWS/302099997/makerspace-movement-brings-invention-and-some-contention#

 

That makes sense. If you are fundraising $2.5 - $3.0 Million from a community like Grand Rapids, you are basically sucking money from other organizations. We're just not that huge of a market, even with the generous philanthropy in the community (I've heard that Rick Devos has donated to Geek Group). Plus, local foundations can't give big grants to "for profits" so that money is not available. The locally HQ'd business community would probably rather give their money to a locally led venture. The big manufacturers in town have existing programs with GRCC for specific skills training.

 

In other words, I wouldn't want to be the development director (fundraiser) for TechTown here in GR. Even with backing from MEDC, the "hub" idea never garnered enough support here.

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