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Poll: Mid Michigan Downtown's Potential

Which Mid-Michigan Dowtown has the most potential?   60 members have voted

  1. 1. Which Mid-Michigan Dowtown has the most potential?

    • Bay City
      4
    • East Lansing
      10
    • Flint
      10
    • Lansing
      30
    • Midland
      1
    • Saginaw
      1
    • Other (please state)
      4

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35 posts in this topic

This is pretty straitforward, which one has the most *potential* not which is currently the best. The options are pretty straitforward also, I know some of you are saying "East Lansing?" but I figured East Lansing has so much going on in it's own downtown, it deserved to be on the list. You already know what my choice is.

And on a side note, lets get some outside opinion on this Gr and Detroit people ;) .

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In terms of "potential" I have to vote Lansing (not because I'm a local though). The city is prime to have a downtown hotspot. Downtown lansing has a great street grid for retail and residential development. There is still plenty of open space for development. If the state can ever get this damn economy going again I see no reason why all of these downtowns cant be great, however I see the most potential in the capital city.

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I hate to get into this, but I will also say Lansing for one key fact: it's the capital city.

The capital city in ANY state always has the most potential for the sole fact that it has a built in job base in state government meaning it always has a base from which to build off of.

I think that if Flint found a sound way to diversify it's economy it would win hands down. But that is much harder than it sounds. The city was built much more densely than the others (maybe save for Saginaw) though, and could easily support a population much larger than it's current one since it squeezed almost 200,000 into it's borders (the same size as Lansing). It was built to be a much larger city, but at the same time, most of it was built after the car meaning it's downtown is rather small (even then) compared to many other historically dense cities.

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I think Lansing has the most potential because of a lot of reasons, other than being local. Lansing is the Capitol City, Lansing has the best transportation, 3 major freeways plus a local one, an airport that could be competitor for #2 in the state, especially given recent growth. Lansing has not decayed nearly as severely as Saginaw or Flint, and Lansing is already well on it's way to downtown development, it is just getting ready for heavy development. Also Lansing has avery dense, ompacted downtown, ever since the very early days, instead of building on empty land or parking lots on the edge of downtown developers have preffered to tear down a old building rather than expand downtown.

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Actually, Flint Bishop is the 2nd best airport in the state, and the one of the best (if not the best) small airports in the country. Though Capital City has made some impressive gains, Flint Bishop has, I believe, twice the amount of passengers per year as Capital City, and ranks in the top 5 as one of the fastest growing in the country.

I just thought I'd make that correction.

Also, Flint, and I believe Saginaw, have much more heavily traveled freeways systems which is why there is such and impressive downtown interchange for a city it's size. For freeway transportation, I think all of these are equal in that you can travel the respective cities with ease, but Flint's I-69 and I-75 are some of the most heavily traveled in the state seeing as how they are major gateways to Canada and northern Michigan.

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Actually, Flint Bishop is the 2nd best airport in the state, and the one of the best (if not the best) small airports in the country.  Though Capital City has made some impressive gains, Flint Bishop has, I believe, twice the amount of passengers per year as Capital City, and ranks in the top 5 as one of the fastest growing in the country.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Thats why I said Lansing could be competitor for #2, it is qickly gaining on GR and Flint, Capitol city is growing while theirs remains the same, because Capitol City was very underutilized and still has a lot of room for growth. And Lansing's freeways offer more because they have a direct shot to each major city in michigan, and we are the center of it all.

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No, Flint's Bishop is STILL steadily gaining. The thing is they have a much larger population base to pull from, and always will. They are quickly putting a dent in Metro numbers pulling in many people from Oakland County who use to fly out of Metro for most of their flights.

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Yeah, last year Flint Bishop was the second fastest growing airport in the nation and is expected to keep that pace for the next 6 years according to studies.

...but other than that I say Lansing has the most potential. :) Its downtown has guaranteed workers (state employees, of course) and a good foundation structurally to build on. The urban movement seems to already have started there and I think its momentum has only just begun.

The area also seems more mass transit-friendly than most Michigan communities, and it doesn't hurt to have MSU next door, either. Just think how it'll be when downtown starts capturing and retaining more and more graduates.

I think Flint may have more potential, but it is mainly dependant on economics, which isn't looking so great. I believe Lansing is in the better position to actually reach its potential and possibly increase it - ultimately giving it the most potential and my vote.

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I agree, I think pulling in MSU students into downtown is key, and could be great thing, a light rail line along Michigan would be great.

And Flint does have a lot of potential, it's just really sad what happened to it. Just think of what Flint could be if it weren't for GM screwing the city and it's people over.

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Lansing has the most potential to me. Being that it's the capitol, it has an advantage, but when visitors see the size of Lansing's downtown, they are often surprised

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As much as I'd like to say Flint, I went with Bay City. The Saginaw Bay is a great asset for the city, and it does seem to be quietly growing and transforming. If Bay City can get the French Quarter plan going, it will really grab people's attention. :)

Re: Bishop Airport. There was an article a week or two ago saying that Bishop passengers were down 6% overall for the year so far. Considering that the Chicago flights were lost, that's not too bad. The Chicago flights accounted for 10% of all annual passengers, so technically you could consider it a 4% increase if the ATA flights were still continuing.

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As much as I'd like to say Flint, I went with Bay City.  The Saginaw Bay is a great asset for the city, and it does seem to be quietly growing and transforming.  If Bay City can get the French Quarter plan going, it will really grab people's attention. :) color]

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

It would be nice to get some more info on Bay City, any details on projects? Really, it would be nice if anyone knew anything about projects going on in cities like Jackson, Battle Creek, Kalamazoo, ect...

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Well, you can't beat East Lansing with the fact that MSU's nearby. I think downtown Lansing can also make some good progress in the future, and it already seems to be heading in the right direction.

Bay City would be my second. Their downtown has made unbelievable progress. They preserve a lot of their older buildings, and have a lot of new ones going up. I actually have a ton of photos of construction, and I did post a Bay City update thread earlier this summer. Now, that I'm back from Los Angeles, I might be able to post an update thread, except now I'm moving back to Ann Arbor, and my new computer just arrived and I need to put all my software back on.

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What handicaps downtown East Lansing is that it can only be built so large. It's only two blocks wide from north to south and can't grow in either directions. It's something like 6-7 blocks long along Grand River, but also can't really grow in either direction. It can definitely be improved, but because of how it was originally planned it can never have a big feel to it. And really, that's good because this region already has a downtown, and downtown East Lansing will always have the "charm" that downtown Lansing can never have because of it's larger size. They complement each other well in that way.

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East Lansing's downtown could be quite large after the East Village is built. But I think the reason EL's downtown will never get too large is because they do not favor offices, they will only have residential, dining, and retail. The downtown could always be expandedd in any direction away from MSU, I'm sure many never predicted Lansing's downtown growing much because of the dense neighborhoods surrounding it.

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You've got a point.

I don't consider East Village (Cedar Village) downtown East Lansing, though. It's right at the very edge, because downtown ends on the west at Bogue.

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If/when East Village is completed it won't be outside of downtown, it will expand downtown. East Village will also likely spur many smaller projects around it, on the scale of West Village and Stonehouse Village. I'm anxious to see some proposals for individual buildings in East Village, I beleive it will happen, very close to the Master Plan. And I beleive the market can support it, my guess is from the first official proposal to the completion of the master plan, will take 10 years or so. If the first project proves successful, many more will quickly follow.

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East Village is on the "other side" of Grand River, so it won't be in downtown. It will touch downtown at it's most northwestern corner, but that's it. Even if there is spinoff development north of Grand River I really feel wary of calling the area downtown. It's almost to the cities eastern border.

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You and others are willing to say Lansing's downtown extends to Pennsylvania, I, by no means, consider that downtown, although the city and others claim it (unless something bad happens then it becomes the eastside.) Anyways, downtown bounderies are always shifting, lets just wait and see what happens, then decide if the finished prodect resembles something worthy of being labled "downtown."

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It's silly to bicker over this, so I'm going to drop it.

And to set things straight, I do not consider Pennsylvania the eastern border of downtown (though most do). As defined by the Lansing Principal Shopping District (PSD) it is the railroad tracks, and that's what I agree with. Going to East Penn is simply what I refer to as Lansing's near eastside, though Penn could be considered to be the border to Greater downtown Lansing.

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I haven't been to Flint in 25 years, but I have seen the other downtowns, and I have to go with Lansing.

Midland and East Lansing have cute, active little downtowns, but they are not in the same league as the others. Bay City looks good, but the city itself feels kind of forgotten. Saginaw is a personal favorite,and it's satellite downtown on the West Side is nice, Saginaw is a sad shadow of what it used to be.

Downtown Lansing feels more metropolitan, and from I've seen on this website, has great plans for the future.

One vote for Lmichigan's hometown ...

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I would have to say Lansing has a lot of potential, mainly with it being the capitol and having open space for development.

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I'm probably in the very small minority here, but I personally think Saginaw has the most potential. They're finally really getting the most out of the Event Center as well as the Temple Theater. Plus Saginaw has the advatage that businessmen with the money and the will to rebuild it.

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Well, Kalamazoo Obviously ;)

I think they should take a couple of lanes off Michigan Avenue, make it two way and widen the sidewalks diverting through traffic onto Kalamazoo Avenue to make Michigan a nice walkable main street (see grand rapids thread about pedestrianizing downtown for examples of Greenville S.C. - linkey)

Yeah, I'm biased...

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