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4 hours ago, Floyd_Z said:

That would be awesome.  A celebration location would be perfect.  I just checked their website and didn't realize they have already expanded far out of Michigan.

Oh yeah, and when a new Hopcat gets announced (in some pretty big cities), people go nuts on social media in that area about it. Absolutely nuts. I know their PR guy. Some of you might know him too... When he posts about a new opening it's pretty crazy the response. 

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As I was driving through Walker the other day, I started to wonder why it is that such a large suburb is so sparsely populated and why it has so little residential development compared to the other suburbs to the south, west, east, and north. With half of Walker being in Grandville schools and the other half being in a respectable Kenowa Hills schools, it can't be for a lack of quality schools. Does anyone know what might be driving this lack of development? 

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42 minutes ago, GRLaker said:

As I was driving through Walker the other day, I started to wonder why it is that such a large suburb is so sparsely populated and why it has so little residential development compared to the other suburbs to the south, west, east, and north. With half of Walker being in Grandville schools and the other half being in a respectable Kenowa Hills schools, it can't be for a lack of quality schools. Does anyone know what might be driving this lack of development? 

A realtor friend of mine told me they have the highest taxes in the GR area 

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16 minutes ago, SupercityGR said:

A realtor friend of mine told me they have the highest taxes in the GR area 

Interesting...Considering there isn't much in the line of infrastructure in the area to keep up. The majority of the populated and commercialized areas are along northern Wilson and Lake Michigan Drive. 

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5 hours ago, arcturus said:

I was told here that the orchards are toxic among other reasons.

Whoa, hey, let's not bring a lawsuit to UrbanPlanet, lol.  There are orchards North of I-96 that contain chemicals that were sprayed on the trees, that developers have run into as an issue for residential. One project was way up by 6 or 7 mile if I remember correctly. But the entire English Hills golf course was approved for residential condos, hundreds of them, but it died when the market crashed. Most of those orchards reside in Alpine Township and North onto the ridge and beyond going toward Sparta.

 

 

 

7 hours ago, SupercityGR said:

A realtor friend of mine told me they have the highest taxes in the GR area 

Your realtor friend is wrong. The millage rate for Walker - Kenowa Hills Schools is around 27 mills, right in line with Georgetown Township and other local townships. If you want Walker - Grandville Schools its' about 28 mills.

https://www.accesskent.com/Departments/Equalization/pdfs/MillageRates/2017.pdf

They do have a 1% income tax but so does the city of Grand Rapids. And the millages are higher in GR.

Property tax millages are WAY higher in places like Wyoming and East Grand Rapids, easily blowing away the 1% income tax  in Walker (for most families making the average household income). If you make $80,000/year you pay $800 in income tax, which most likely Walker has some exemptions/credits. 

If you own a $300,000 home in Walker, your property taxes would be about $4050/year. If you own a $300,000 home in EGR, your property taxes are $7350 a year. Both provide city fire, city police, sidewalks, etc because they are incorporated cities.  If you live in the city of Wyoming and your kids go to Grandville Schools, your property taxes on a $300,000 home are about $5700.

I could give a myriad of other examples of places that have much higher taxes than Walker. Some people just have a mind-melt when they hear "income tax." Although incomes taxes certainly hasn't stopped people from buying homes in the city of GR.

If you look at an aerial, Walker north of Lake Michigan Drive is just as dense as Kentwood or Georgetown Twp. South of LMD it's pretty rural.

 

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South Walker was home to gypsum board plants,  one where the Kent County Parks office are and another further sw on Butterworth. Those plants both torn down now, mined the raw gypsum right there. There are numerous levels of mined out areas below ground in the area.  Subsidence is a real concern on some of the properties. 

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Yeah the populated portions of Walker are pretty uniformally more dense.   The city is estimated to be gaining residents at the same rate the rest of the area is.  I've always thought the large rural portions of the city were zoned to stay that way.  Either way the city is in a great position to grow more between 3 and 4 mile if it wanted to change that zoning.  That area is pretty decent job center between Meijer and all of the factories though.

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2 hours ago, MJLO said:

Yeah the populated portions of Walker are pretty uniformally more dense.   The city is estimated to be gaining residents at the same rate the rest of the area is.  I've always thought the large rural portions of the city were zoned to stay that way.  Either way the city is in a great position to grow more between 3 and 4 mile if it wanted to change that zoning.  That area is pretty decent job center between Meijer and all of the factories though.

Interestingly Remembrance leaves a lot to be desired for a commercial corridor, but you go just a block off of it and there are some really nice neighborhoods, going all the way up to Richmond and North of that. Walker covers quite a large area.

I have heard random comments about large gypsum deposits around the O'Brien Road area East of Wilson. And there's no water and sewer in much of that area, unlike the Standale area up to 4 mile. 

Here's a land-use/zoning map for those interested... 

http://www.walker.city/document_center/2016_Zoning_Map_12_16_15.pdf

 

 

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13 hours ago, GRDadof3 said:

Interestingly Remembrance leaves a lot to be desired for a commercial corridor, but you go just a block off of it and there are some really nice neighborhoods, going all the way up to Richmond and North of that. Walker covers quite a large area.

I have heard random comments about large gypsum deposits around the O'Brien Road area East of Wilson. And there's no water and sewer in much of that area, unlike the Standale area up to 4 mile. 

Here's a land-use/zoning map for those interested... 

http://www.walker.city/document_center/2016_Zoning_Map_12_16_15.pdf

 

 

The gypsum deposits are poor grade not suitable for making wallboard. The GR Gypsum plant at the end was using gypsum from West Branch after the mine in Kentwood no longer produced suitable material.  Gypsum mining is over in West MI.

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14 hours ago, getemngo said:

Bagger Dave's at Knapp's Crossing closed. The chain peaked at 18 locations when this one opened; after this round of closures, there will be either 9 or 10 depending on your source: 

http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2018/01/another_bagger_daves_closes_in.html

(Have we abandoned the East Beltline Developments thread?)

Didn't they just build that location? There was obviously some poor planning going into their decision making.

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7 hours ago, GRLaker said:

Didn't they just build that location? There was obviously some poor planning going into their decision making.

Yeah, it opened in fall 2015. The whole Bagger Dave's chain has been collapsing. They once had 3 Grand Rapids area locations, one in Holland, one in Traverse City, and one in East Lansing... and now the 28th & Kraft location is the only one left in the western two-thirds of Michigan. Seems like they overexpanded pretty severely in 2011-12.

The owners also operate a ton of Buffalo Wild Wings, so at least they can fall back on that.

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I've often wondered the same about South Walker.  From the river to LMD there is almost no development.  It's just a stark contrast to the other side of the river.  It seems like it would be a prime spot with highway access, it would be great for GVSU students who don't want to live in Allendale.  There is a huge parcel across from Johnson Park that would be perfect for apartments.  I always figured it was due to the mines, but do they actually go that far?   Is there any way to make the land above the mines developable?  Implode them or something?   I know quite a few are used by Founders for barrel aging.

 

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On 1/26/2018 at 4:56 PM, getemngo said:

Yeah, it opened in fall 2015. The whole Bagger Dave's chain has been collapsing. They once had 3 Grand Rapids area locations, one in Holland, one in Traverse City, and one in East Lansing... and now the 28th & Kraft location is the only one left in the western two-thirds of Michigan. Seems like they overexpanded pretty severely in 2011-12.

The owners also operate a ton of Buffalo Wild Wings, so at least they can fall back on that.

Actually I think they divested in Bagger Daves a year or 2 ago and made it a stand alone operation.  They expanded way to quick to develop the talent they needed at all levels, and their menu is incredibly forgettable.  There have been plenty of chains that have followed the same fate. 

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On 1/25/2018 at 6:43 PM, getemngo said:

Bagger Dave's at Knapp's Crossing closed. 

That is unfortunate. I’d rather see them stay than Chili’s and Applebee’s. A local (Michigan) burger franchise with a good menu and decent prices.  We live nearby so went there a number of times but they weren’t ever super busy. There is a glut of restaurants there (especially sandwich  places and fro yo places), but I thought Bagger Dave’s had a niche there. Guess not. 

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35 minutes ago, dadr said:

That is unfortunate. I’d rather see them stay than Chili’s and Applebee’s. A local (Michigan) burger franchise with a good menu and decent prices.  We live nearby so went there a number of times but they weren’t ever super busy. There is a glut of restaurants there (especially sandwich  places and fro yo places), but I thought Bagger Dave’s had a niche there. Guess not. 

I think this restaurant was doomed before it had started. I know that the company had shifted back to focusing on Buffalo Wild Wings locations before this location even opened. Hopefully something will fill it soon. It’s the second restaurant owned by this company that now sits vacant (right across the street from each other). 

Joe

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NOT a Chik-Fil-A. There was a preliminary look by the Planning Commission for a Chik-Fil-A across the driveway to the south in front of Target.  The PC identified some significant traffic circulation issues that would need to be addressed for approval.

The Cinco De Mayo ex Perkins is being remodeling into 3 suites, originally office/retail but the last appearance at the PC shows a Chipotle on the south, a possible 2nd restaurant on the north, and still undetermined in the center.

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12 hours ago, walkermat said:

Chik-Fil-A. City of Walker documents had it included about a month or so ago.

I actually had Chik-Fil-A for the first time a few weeks ago. First time I've found chicken nuggets at a restaurant that weren't breaded, and they were pretty tasty. I wouldn't drive out of my way and wait in a long drive through line to get them again, but just sayin. 

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On 1/28/2018 at 8:07 AM, MJLO said:

Actually I think they divested in Bagger Daves a year or 2 ago and made it a stand alone operation.  They expanded way to quick to develop the talent they needed at all levels, and their menu is incredibly forgettable.  There have been plenty of chains that have followed the same fate. 

Good call on that, WZZM mentioned the divestiture in a story today. Apparently they closed 4 other restaurants when they closed the East Beltline location.

http://www.wzzm13.com/news/local/michigan/bagger-daves-closes-five-locations-including-one-in-grand-rapids/512897603

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