GRDadof3

County to sell 82 Ionia

18 posts in this topic

The county is looking to consolidate and get rid of some of its large real estate portfolio. 82 Ionia is the first that the're looking to put up for sale. As most of you guys and gals know, the building was historically a furniture exposition center and a Klingman's furniture showroom. Would make a great spot for housing. 

 

Another part of this study recommends building a new parks department building and public works office on Butterworth near the gypsum mines (at the Kent Trails trailhead park area). The parks dept is currently in a mobile/modular home there now. Public Works is currently up on Front Street, isn't it? 

 

http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2015/05/kent_county_may_sell_108000-sq.html

 

17848661-mmmain.jpg

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The county is looking to consolidate and get rid of some of its large real estate portfolio. 82 Ionia is the first that the're looking to put up for sale. As most of you guys and gals know, the building was historically a furniture exposition center and a Klingman's furniture showroom. Would make a great spot for housing. 

 

http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2015/05/kent_county_may_sell_108000-sq.html

 

17848661-mmmain.jpg

 

I just spent the last five minutes trying to figure out where to put this article, so I'm glad you made a spot for it!

I thought it was interesting when the article also referenced a few other recommendations/possibilities.It would be amazing to see some real growth/development start to happen in a way that also allows the county to make some fiscally healthy transitions.

Also, that building could really contribute to some great retail in that area, especially with Morton and the Cornerstone building (is that its name?) getting reactivated at the street level.

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I just spent the last five minutes trying to figure out where to put this article, so I'm glad you made a spot for it!

I thought it was interesting when the article also referenced a few other recommendations/possibilities.It would be amazing to see some real growth/development start to happen in a way that also allows the county to make some fiscally healthy transitions.

Also, that building could really contribute to some great retail in that area, especially with Morton and the Cornerstone building (is that its name?) getting reactivated at the street level.

 

Yes, the Cornerstone Bldg. New retail on the ground floor would do a lot for that area. And could serve Kendall and GRCC students. 

 

They also mention moving public works to Butterworth. I wonder if the thought is to get the public works off the riverfront where the head of the new rapids park will be? 

 

https:[email protected]42.9910381,-85.675507,533m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x81bb5d75b7a02d6a

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This building could use some TLC on the Division side to improve the facade / transparency to the street. Would be great to see this and the Keeler Building (the blockades along the sidewalk piss me off every morning when driving by) get redeveloped.

 

Joe

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I hope whomever buys it restores the ground floor so that something can be there other than offices that are constantly covered with large blinds. That building's current state kills street activity worse than if it was just abandoned. There is so much potential space for many retail services that are desperately needed down there, and It has off-street parking! If it just remains a boring office pen, then it will have been a real waste.

Edited by GR_Urbanist

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Would be cool to see Kendall buy it and potentially make it housing, as they're talking. More bodies downtown 24/7.

Edited by GRDadof3
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That's a great list of bidders. Kendall would be cool, and I also love what Franklin Partners is doing with their other properties in the area. I'm not as familiar with Embassy, but they seem to have deep pockets.

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Without knowing the plans at all, I'd like to see Franklin get their hands on this building (and the Keeler Building across the street). They've been great stewards of their properties downtown and seem to go all-in when it comes to redevelopment. While the Old Federal Building is nice, I think Kendall does a pretty lousy job with their buildings. Maybe increased oversight by Ferris will change it, but the main Kendall building needs some love (inside and out).

Joe

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Without knowing the plans at all, I'd like to see Franklin get their hands on this building (and the Keeler Building across the street). They've been great stewards of their properties downtown and seem to go all-in when it comes to redevelopment. While the Old Federal Building is nice, I think Kendall does a pretty lousy job with their buildings. Maybe increased oversight by Ferris will change it, but the main Kendall building needs some love (inside and out).

Joe

Looks like it's going to be Kendall. Wow, way higher than the other bids.

http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2015/09/see_who_wants_to_pay_10m_for_k.html

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Then I really hope Franklin Partners buys the Keeler Building out from under Azzar. Bids are due this Friday. Crossing my fingers someone will finally give this building the TLC it deserves.

Ferris is building up quite the presence on Division. UICA to the Old Federal Building. Nice! I just hope they do this building right (the price indicates they will).

Joe

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This makes me a bit uneasy as I was hoping for this building to have its ground floor retail restored, and It isnt likely that FSU is going to do much more with this other than turn it into a Kendal Kirkhof Center.

 

But it would have been almost irresponsible for them to not grab this. It's too good to pass up.

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This makes me a bit uneasy as I was hoping for this building to have its ground floor retail restored, and It isnt likely that FSU is going to do much more with this other than turn it into a Kendal Kirkhof Center.

Crap.  I didn't see this before, but it's a real bummer.  Kendall has essentially destroyed this entire section of downtown that they apparently like to call its "cultural heart."  No, it isn't.  They are completely wrecking it and turning it into a bunch of weird dead space that is uncomfortable to go anywhere near.  Public downtown universities that build a concentrated campus in a downtown area are a mixed blessing, at best.  They permanently remove property from the tax rolls and convert it to what is, by and large, an inactive use.  From any perspective other than the very short term, selling to Kendall is a bad move for almost everyone but Kendall, including the county which loses out on tax revenue forever. The only salvation is if Kendall decides to lease the ground floor or condo it out from the rest of the building.  

 

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Article out today talking about what the county will do to relocate its displaced employees:

http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2015/09/40m_of_construction_eyed_for_k.html

Not a fan of taking people out of downtown (though Fuller & Michigan is getting increasingly urban); it does seem to make sense to consolidate some of those offices to be closer together, though.

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That would be fairly convenient/coincidental if Franklin Partners put an RFQ on that building to accompany it's remodel of the Kendall Building.  Turn the Ellis lot into a garage and poof you have enough space to lure a large corporate office tenant from the suburbs.

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Some one PLEASE grab it and restore the ground floor retail! No first floor offices with drawn blinds!

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8 minutes ago, GR_Urbanist said:

Some one PLEASE grab it and restore the ground floor retail! No first floor offices with drawn blinds!

Amen!!!  KCAD bailing out is a potentially HUGE blessing for downtown.  If someone actually develops this, ground-floor use is almost guaranteed, and it would breathe HUGE life into the rather destitute east end of downtown.  

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