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GRDadof3

Two Buildings...

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So, when do people think development downtown will hit the critical mass needed to put development pressure on these two last vestiges of Grand Rapids furniture past?

 

The old Baker Furniture building on Monroe is about 250,000 sf in the five story older building, with about another 139,000 square foot newer warehouse that was added to it. Would be a nice spot next to the river when the River Edges trail is finally completed.

 

Assessed value is around 1.4 Million I believe.

 

15246462294_33179e93a4_b.jpg

 

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The other is the old Century (?) Furniture company building on Logan. The big hulk with the "Antiques" sign that everyone surely knows about.

 

I believe when John Rooks was looking at redeveloping way back when, it was estimated at around 550,000 sf?

 

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Unlike the famed Packard Plant in Detroit, or the sinking Klingman's factory on Ionia, both buildings have been relatively well preserved and are in good shape for a makeover.

 

Thoughts?

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Thought I would give this format of reply a chance. Much easier than making drawings.
 

Edited by temporary.name

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https://youtu.be/xUCsbz34Q_0

 

Nice overview! Thanks for doing that. I like a lot of your ideas.

 

Using part of the warehouse on the Baker Furniture factory for indoor parking is a great idea. Especially if you're going to do condos, you almost have to have indoor/heated parking. FYI, the whole building is vacant. Baker closed it about 10 years ago?

 

Most of that whole surface lot out in front could be sold off for infill and it wouldn't detract from the older factory building. You'd have a footprint of about 35,000 square feet to build up on. The other portion all the way to the corner of Ann and Monroe could be split off and would still be about 130,000 square feet.

 

You could in essence create an entire residential village up there, with a park and trail on the river, some views of downtown, and even a cool view of that old railroad bridge (Trestle View Lofts).

 

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Also, the Northern end of the river restoration project will be right out your door. All of that riverfront land from Leonard to Ann has slowly been acquired by the DNR over the last few years in preparation for a trail, so I hear. Some pieces are also owned by the city.

 

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The other building, which you're correct it's the Sligh Furniture building (not Century Furniture, I always think Century because it's ON Century), great idea for the pool and the indoor parking in the one annex. That portion of the building used to be a furniture outlet for Israels and would make fine parking floors, IIRC. 12 foot ceilings I think.

 

Which one goes first? Probably depends on which owners are willing to part with which building sooner. Sligh is a lot closer but I think they want a ton of money for it.

 

I think either might be on 616's or Mike Jacobsen's radar down the road, if I were a betting man and the rental market holds up for the next 5 years.

 

In addition to Google Earth, this is a fun site to play around with. It's how I measure spaces and find out who owns what pretty easily.

 

http://gis.kentcountymi.gov/public/kcviewerweb/

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I did not know land that "far" north had been purchased by the DNR. Would certainly add to the appeal of the property.

I can see Baker doing well if it built for and sold itself as a urban oasis. Especially if the stores and businesses north of the site on Monroe saw an increase in expansion, renovation, and/or redevelopment. The property is somewhat conviently located in a nice "forgotten about" area.

I do enjoy Kent county's online land map but the controls are not as intuitive and I felt this video didn't need the additional data layers supplied by it.

Also, let me know how you guys like my video. I might make more of them. What do you think of ads before the video? I didn't know if people would be cool with it or not. I put them there to help justify the (albeit small) amount of time I spend on them.

Edited by temporary.name

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I would think the big Warehouse off of Century would need a major tenant in order to be successful the likes of a corporate head quarters ect.  I think it's just too big to do a loft type conversion.    

 

The old Baker complex I can see being a good fit for a 616 type conversion and they've shown some aggressive interest in expanding into No-Mo and Creston,  I really think it's only a matter of time before that one goes.  It is definitely on the fringe of what would be living downtown however that might make it less attractive for investment. 

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I did not know land that "far" north had been purchased by the DNR. Would certainly add to the appeal of the property.

I can see Baker doing well if it built for and sold itself as a urban oasis. Especially if the stores and businesses north of the site on Monroe saw an increase in expansion, renovation, and/or redevelopment. The property is somewhat conviently located in a nice "forgotten about" area.

I do enjoy Kent county's online land map but the controls are not as intuitive and I felt this video didn't need the additional data layers supplied by it.

Also, let me know how you guys like my video. I might make more of them. What do you think of ads before the video? I didn't know if people would be cool with it or not. I put them there to help justify the (albeit small) amount of time I spend on them.

 

I've gotten used to Youtube ads, so I didn't even notice.

 

Everything outlined in red is DNR owned now:

 

15843869546_7254685f45_o.jpg

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I would think the big Warehouse off of Century would need a major tenant in order to be successful the likes of a corporate head quarters ect.  I think it's just too big to do a loft type conversion.    

 

The old Baker complex I can see being a good fit for a 616 type conversion and they've shown some aggressive interest in expanding into No-Mo and Creston,  I really think it's only a matter of time before that one goes.  It is definitely on the fringe of what would be living downtown however that might make it less attractive for investment. 

 

The Sligh/Century factory is HUGE and might be a few years down the road. At 500,000+ square feet you'd have a 500 unit project, which is twice the size of Boardwalk.

 

It might be cool to split it up residential and commercial. Maybe Wolverine World Wide could move into it. Or the Baker Building. They could build a HQ fitness R&D campus like Nike has in Oregon (but way cooler). 

 

http://www.businessinsider.com/nike-office-headquarters-2013-11

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While investigating the Baker Factory a bit more today, I discovered a hobo village (shanty town, tent town). Very interesting.

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The city's economic development office now has a line item to look at going in and doing an environmental study, to see if they can help Baker get their property sold. Will be interesting to see what kind of cleanup is required. It's apparently big (probably like Klingman or maybe more expensive).

 

If the shear expense of having the environmental study done is keeping suitors away, it's great that the city is looking at stepping up.

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GRL, Who I believe owns that building and a few other warehouses on the south west side, has been listing their buildings for years.

Usually at very high prices.  I think that building has been listed ever since there was talk of a Casino going in there.

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