Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

localtalent

Predictions for the Future of Grand Rapids

Recommended Posts

After seeing the creativity and vision which exists among this forum's members (as displayed in the Downtown Development topic), I thought it might be nice to start a topic devoted to longer range predictions for the city.

I'm looking for where people think the city will be in 10, 20, 30 years. What will it look like? What are the main economic drivers? What does it look like culturally, ethnically, socio-economically, architecturally?

Anyone want to play?

If we can get a few responses going, I might even chime in with my own visionary predictions. :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


After seeing the creativity and vision which exists among this forum's members (as displayed in the Downtown Development topic), I thought it might be nice to start a topic devoted to longer range predictions for the city.

I'm looking for where people think the city will be in 10, 20, 30 years. What will it look like? What are the main economic drivers? What does it look like culturally, ethnically, socio-economically, architecturally?

Anyone want to play?

If we can get a few responses going, I might even chime in with my own visionary predictions. :rolleyes:

Well in the 30+ year range, another expressway will sprout from where i96 curves heading west before the plainfield exit...heading NE towards the Greenville airport, and then heading to Mount Pleasant. That would definitely bring a lot more people to GR and not to mention the ease for some ppl like me who currently live in that area to shoot to GR in about 15-20 min instead of 45. This would also be another major expansion for GR...

I think the GR - Muskegon - Holland thing will become more defined over the years, as we are expanding n all. I don't know if I could necessarily see them merging into Grand Rapids as a city, but they could definitely be like a Wyoming/Kentwood suburb thing.

I think we can all assume that downtown will be drastically changed with new towers, and possibly some headquarter offices moving into downtown, and hopefully more well-known chain stores and venues will be coming out way. I think downtown is definitely heading in the right direction.

And HOPEFULLY in the next 5-10 years we will have all new expressways that are nicely paved and easy to ride.

These are just some generic things I'm thinking about, but I'll probably come back with some more after reading others :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can see Grand Rapids and all of West Michigan positioning themselves as one of the GREEN capitals of the U.S.. :

1. We are at the forefront of LEED Certified buildings and institutions, with the greatest concentration of said developments and largest number of LEED Accredited professionals in the U.S., with I believe Haworth or Steelcase leading the pack (Nitro should be able to verify or correct me if I'm wrong).

2. We have a progressive mayor in office who is working to rewrite city policies gearing them toward more "Sustainability, renewability, and environmentally friendly" policies.

3. The city has the giant waste-to-energy power plant on Market Avenue: http://www.covantaenergy.com/facilities/wte/kent.asp

4. The sewage treatment system being switched to an environmentally friendly ultra-violet light system.

5. The city is taking steps to increase that "branding" by purchasing the all electric parking enforcement vehicles, pursuing federal funds for more hybrid transit busses, and continuing to push legislature for funds for the ITP - Rapid mass transit expansion.

6. Jennifer Granholm's $2 billion bill to make Michigan "Ground Zero" as the nation's alternative energy hub. I found this interesting link: http://www.absolutemichigan.com/articles/?articleid=2131

7. President Bush has been on an "Energy Kick" since last year, and it is accelerating this year with his State of the Union speech and peristent visits to alternative energy facilities. It's my belief that a major announcement will be made by Bush sometime this year (not about Grand Rapids). Grand Rapids is hoping to capitalize on this emerging sector.

8. We already have the letters GR in our name, which is why I changed my signature for fun :lol:

9. Guy Bazzani and his GREEN roof. :)

It appears to me that it's the way things are heading, and it's definitely a great "niche" that I don't see a great many cities embracing yet. Just look at a search of Green Sustainability Grand Rapids:

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&q=g...ids&btnG=Search

How's that?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm going to be creative with this one, I'll do it in the form of a made up news article :P (Look for subtle hints too, like in the titles, and names of things ;)) Also all reporters names are made up, and this is considered satire ;) (That sould take care of the CMA part)

Market Riverfront Project Finalized

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

By John Doe

The Grand Rapids Press

GRAND RAPIDS -- Today the city marks the end of a 10 year long construction plan that was first leaked by Debra Shurlow. At first it seemed only a small but expensive addition to Grand Rapids. Later on we found out each phase of the project, and it only seemed to get better from there. Phase IV, the finial phase of the project was finished today, and the Grand Opening of Phase IV is today at 4:00 PM. This phase is on the southern end of the development, and it includes retail, and hotel space. The Multi-use development has already brought with it 8,000 jobs on its own, but the resulting redevelopment of the entire area is estimated to have brought well over 30,000 jobs to the city. After the decision to OK the constuction of the project of which still nothing is known, employees are sworn to secrecy about who and what company it is that inhabits the beautiful riverfront office complex. The ominous black building sits there like a monolith guiding Grand Rapids towards an evolved future, if we were monkeys before, we are space faring humans now. Just to list some of the other developments that came to fruition from this development:

  • The 55 story 5/3rd Bank office building that replaced the old 5/3rd bank building.

  • The 35 story Huntington West Michigan offices

  • The 30 story London Condominiums

  • the 32 story Ameijer Headquarters on Market and Fulton

  • The new 10,000 capacity Gainey Performing Arts Center

  • The 27 story Perrigo Complex on Division and Fulton

The problems with construction are long forgotten today, Mark London at first was reluctant to relocate, but after the developer gave London the opportunity to construct and operate a trendy club in one of its buildings, he obliged and established the "Big Ben" as its called today.

NFL considering Expansion Franchise in Grand Rapids

Monday, March 02, 2026

By Mary Whiteworth

The Grand Rapids Stock and Ledger

GRAND RAPIDS -- Former strip club operator Mark London has approached the NFL about moving an expansion team to Grand Rapids. Mr. London was formerly a strip club owner, who 20 years ago proposed a new club downtown, which today is home to the Mysterious Monolithic headquarters. When the developers came to Mark 20 years ago to build on the land he owned for the club, at first he was skeptical, but after starting a hang out club along the river at Mysterious Monolithic's HQs London found a new niche. He started to get into the real estate industry, building large condominiums in downtown areas all across the country, his largest here in Grand Rapids the 30 story London Condos is also home to his largest club the "Big Ben".

With all the money he made from real estate Mark said, he wanted more. Today Mark is looking to build an NFL Stadium in the North Monroe District. City Officials are scrambling to get permits passed, and London has said that no city taxes will be needed to complete this project. London has said a major investor has also gone in on an NFL team in Grand Rapids although he can't say who. The stadium is one of the first of its kind, it will feature the new Eye-pod viewing system. It is speculated that Mysterious Monolithic Inc. maybe the unknown invester, because their invention is being used here. Fans with Eye-pods can wirelessly connect to the stadium, and see the action from any angle, without the need for a personal screen. Eye-Pods work by sending the images to your brain making for the clearest picture your eye can see. Your own picture! And for the first time the stadium will have the new "Turbo Turf" which is said to feel like grass, but be as soft as a pillow to land on.

London says the stadium and the team should be ready to play by 2019.

And just poking fun at the dire straits of today's youth (Article is in Leet speak, translations are given)

r3v01u7!0n $33k3r$ 100k 70 gr4nd r4p!d$ (Revolution seekers look to Grand Rapids)

$und4y, m4rch 02, 2036 (Sunday March 02, 2036)

8y j!11!4n d0n41d$0n (By Jillian Donaldson)

7h3 gr4nd r4p!d$ h4ck3r (The Grand Rapids Hacker)

gr4nd r4p!d$ -- w!7h 7h3 un!73d $7473$ p1ung3d !n70 ch40$ fr0m r3831 f4c7!0n$ 70 7h3 $0u7h, 4nd $0c!41!$7 $upp0r73r$ 70 7h3 w3$7 4n un1!k3 $74g!ng 4r34 f0r 7h3 r37urn 70 n0rm41cy !$ 83!ng $p34rh34d3d !n gr4nd r4p!d$, 0n3 0f 7h3 f3w c!7!3$ un70uch3d 8y 7h3 r3831 h0rd3$.

!7 !$ 70 7h3 7h4nk$ 0f my$73r!0u$ m0n01!7h!c 7h47 7h3!r n3w $h!31d 73chn010gy k3p7 7h3 7h3rm0fu$!0r 80m8$ fr0m d4m4g!ng 7h3 c!7y, 4nd 7h3 r3$u174n7 h07 p14$m4 7h47 0023d fr0m 7h3 80m8$ 7h3m$31v3$. my$73r!0u$ m0n01!7!ch c30 fr4nk 74nk3170n $4!d "w3 4r3 47 w4r, unf0r7un4731y, w3 h4d 70 m0v3 4w4y fr0m pr!v473 r3$34rch 70 pu81!c r3$34rch." m0n01!7h!c, wh0 u$3d 70 f0cu$ 0n c0mm3rc!41 r3$34rch $w!7ch3d 70 d3f3n$3 r3$34rch wh3n 7h3 w4r $74r73d !n 2030. "0ur m!$$!0n h4$ 41w4y$ 833n 70 pr0v!d3 p3r$0n41 pr0duc7$ 7h47 3nr!ch 7h3 1!v3$ 0f 07h3r$" m0n01!7h!c 1473r w3n7 0n 70 $4y 7h47 83c4u$3 0f 7h3 73n$!0n$ !n 7h3 c0un7ry 70d4y, 7h47 7h3y 4r3 c0ng10m3r47!ng h3r3 !n gr4nd r4p!d$, 4nd h4v3 pr0p0$3d 4 n3w 110 $70ry 0ff!c3 c0mp13 0n 1y0n 4nd 0774w4. 4cr0$$ fr0m 7h3 5/3rd 0ff!c3$. "$0m3 r3$!d3n7$ c0mp14!n3d 7h!$ m!gh7 83 700 7411 f0r gr4nd r4p!d$, 8u7 m0n01!7h!c'$ c30 4$$ur3d u$ 7h!$ !$ f0r 7h3 83$7. "7h!$ 70w3r w!11 r3d3f!n3 gr4nd r4p!d$, 7h47 fr0m 7h3 ru8813 0f c!7!3$ 83f0r3 u$ w3 83g!n 4 n3w p47h 70w4rd$ n3u7r41!7y, 4nd c0ur4g!0u$n3$$."

7h3 c!7y'$ $h!31d h4$ pr073c73d u$ fr0m !nc0m!ng 814$7$ 0f 7h3 h07 p14$m4 80m8$, 4n$ $0 f4r $c!3n7!$7$ 4r3 $4y!ng !7 !$ $7!11 $74813. grpd p01!c3 ch!3f fr4n d001!ng !$ 0p7!m!$7!c 7h47 4 n3w g3n3r470r ju$7 0u7$!d3 7h3 c!7y w!11 h01d, 4nd 7h47 7h3 $h!31d w!11 $74y !n p14c3.

(Translation):

GRAND RAPIDS --With the United States plunged into chaos from rebel factions to the south, and socialist supporters to the west an unlikely staging area for the return to normalcy is being spearheaded in Grand Rapids, one of the few cities untouched by the rebel hordes.

It is to the thanks of Mysterious Monolithic that their new shield technology kept the thermofusior bombs from damaging the city, and the resultant hot plasma that oozed from the bombs themselves. Mysterious Monolitich CEO Frank Tankelton said "We are at war, unfortunately, we had to move away from private research to public research." Monolithic, who used to focus on commercial research switched to defense research when the war started in 2030. "Our mission has always been to provide personal products that enrich the lives of others" Monolithic later went on to say that because of the tensions in the country today, that they are conglomerating here in Grand Rapids, and have proposed a new 110 story office comple on Lyon and Ottawa. across from the 5/3rd offices. "Some residents complained this might be too tall for Grand Rapids, but Monolithic's CEO assured us this is for the best. "This tower will redefine Grand Rapids, that from the rubble of cities before us we begin a new path towards neutrality, and couragiousness."

The city's shield has protected us from incoming blasts of the hot plasma bombs, ans so far scientists are saying it is still stable. GRPD police chief Fran Dooling is optimistic that a new generator just outside the city will hold, and that the shield will stay in place.

Maybe a heads up: Mysterious Monolithic Inc. is my satirized result of the mysterious downtown development ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...I predict a task force for rasing money and funding the rehabilitation and creating new design of our city's waterfronts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like the persons thoughts of an NFL team in the future, but I would like to see GR go in a little different direction. I would like GR to have some what of a Portland like stature with winter sports teams like NHL and NBA. Despite a sports team debate, I do agree we will see taller buildings in the future... ...can't wait...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I predict that due to the national shortage and therefore high price of gasoline, people will move back into the city in droves. There will be new apartment and condo buildings and mixed-use retail and office towers all over! There will have to be a viable mass transit system, maybe light rail to move everyone around. The walkability of the downtown though, will be very good. The problems will be the high-crime suburbs, where no one will dare to live and the out-lying school systems will be terrible, in favor of the city system. Because of the high transportation costs, people will no longer go to the malls such as Rivertown or Woodland, but will be able to shop in one of the many choices along Monroe or Fulton or in one of the new multi-use high-rises. Hey, I'm ready!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I predict that due to the national shortage and therefore high price of gasoline, people will move back into the city in droves. There will be new apartment and condo buildings and mixed-use retail and office towers all over! There will have to be a viable mass transit system, maybe light rail to move everyone around. The walkability of the downtown though, will be very good. The problems will be the high-crime suburbs, where no one will dare to live and the out-lying school systems will be terrible, in favor of the city system. Because of the high transportation costs, people will no longer go to the malls such as Rivertown or Woodland, but will be able to shop in one of the many choices along Monroe or Fulton or in one of the new multi-use high-rises. Hey, I'm ready!

I would do that now, if there was a viable retail DT It would be the first I would go to. Since DT is closer to me then Woodland and Rivertown.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Once it becomes clear that global warming is indeed true and that all coastal cities are subject to annual flooding, hurricanes and rapidly repeating earthquakes, the cities will be abandoned in favor of safer locales. Grand Rapids will benefit, with 253 of the Fortune 500 relocating here for safety. After the population hits 4 million, a great wall will go up, keeping the thronging hoards from our fair city. Large JLO-villes will rise on the perimeter (tent cities and shanty towns derisively named for our President, Jennifer Lopez, formerly a singer actress, waitress). The aging mayor of this metropolis, known simpy as Dadoff, lies on his golden chaise lounge, looking out his 78th story office windows in City Hall. His youthful dreams fulfilled, he wonders what great towers will rise next? His arch nemisis, the Azzar-ino, grandson of the former slum lord has been driven from the city in shame and is exiled for life in a JLOville.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Once it becomes clear that global warming is indeed true and that all coastal cities are subject to annual flooding, hurricanes and rapidly repeating earthquakes, the cities will be abandoned in favor of safer locales. Grand Rapids will benefit, with 253 of the Fortune 500 relocating here for safety. After the population hits 4 million, a great wall will go up, keeping the thronging hoards from our fair city. Large JLO-villes will rise on the perimeter (tent cities and shanty towns derisively named for our President, Jennifer Lopez, formerly a singer actress, waitress). The aging mayor of this metropolis, known simpy as Dadoff, lies on his golden chaise lounge, looking out his 78th story office windows in City Hall. His youthful dreams fulfilled, he wonders what great towers will rise next? His arch nemisis, the Azzar-ino, grandson of the former slum lord has been driven from the city in shame and is exiled for life in a JLOville.

Wouldn't Grand Rapid's proximity to the lakes affect us negatively with rising oceans?

If the oceans rise enough, the water will flow into the lakes too ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wouldn't Grand Rapid's proximity to the lakes affect us negatively with rising oceans?

If the oceans rise enough, the water will flow into the lakes too ;)

They would have to rise very high, Lake Michigan is something like 580 feet above sea level :shok:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They would have to rise very high, Lake Michigan is something like 580 feet above sea level :shok:

good point. I guess I thought maybe the ocean would fill up the st lawerance, and that would flow to the lakes, but I guess its the other way around. the lakes flow down the river.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My prediction (based on actual models, no I can't share details)....

Grand Rapids city population will be 425,000 within 10 years; 750,000 within 15 years; 1.2 million within 20 years.

MSA will grow in the same period to 4+ million.

Imagine the work we have ahead of us. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My prediction (based on actual models, no I can't share details)....

Grand Rapids city population will be 425,000 within 10 years; 750,000 within 15 years; 1.2 million within 20 years.

MSA will grow in the same period to 4+ million.

Imagine the work we have ahead of us. :D

thats a lot of people to fit into such a tiny area, I think some annexation is in order.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My prediction (based on actual models, no I can't share details)....

Grand Rapids city population will be 425,000 within 10 years; 750,000 within 15 years; 1.2 million within 20 years.

MSA will grow in the same period to 4+ million.

Imagine the work we have ahead of us. :D

:shok: (!) Has any U.S. city ever seen such exponential growth? The only places I can think of that are growing that quickly are desert sprawl-patches in the SW...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Once it becomes clear that global warming is indeed true and that all coastal cities are subject to annual flooding, hurricanes and rapidly repeating earthquakes, the cities will be abandoned in favor of safer locales. Grand Rapids will benefit, with 253 of the Fortune 500 relocating here for safety. After the population hits 4 million, a great wall will go up, keeping the thronging hoards from our fair city. Large JLO-villes will rise on the perimeter (tent cities and shanty towns derisively named for our President, Jennifer Lopez, formerly a singer actress, waitress). The aging mayor of this metropolis, known simpy as Dadoff, lies on his golden chaise lounge, looking out his 78th story office windows in City Hall. His youthful dreams fulfilled, he wonders what great towers will rise next? His arch nemisis, the Azzar-ino, grandson of the former slum lord has been driven from the city in shame and is exiled for life in a JLOville.

:rofl::rofl: Too funny!

4+ million!! :shok: I'm with GRCentro. That's a bit scary. We need to get hyper aggressive with planning for growth now!! That's faster growth than even Atlanta. Wish I knew from where you get your confidence local talent?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the population of GR will finally top 200K by 2010 and reach 210K at the most. There's no way we'll reach those population numbers localtalent is suggesting unless this new development has something to do with increasing fertility rates. :blush::wub:

I predict that all this development will include some much needed light rail.

I'll guess and say 10-15 new towers in GR by 2010.

A national championship for GVSU football each year till 2010.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So, do these models have GR overtaking the population of Detroit (which, if I remember right, has been slipping and is now below 930k) in that 20 year time frame?

My prediction (based on actual models, no I can't share details)....

Grand Rapids city population will be 425,000 within 10 years; 750,000 within 15 years; 1.2 million within 20 years.

MSA will grow in the same period to 4+ million.

Imagine the work we have ahead of us. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the population of GR will finally top 200K by 2010 and reach 210K at the most. There's no way we'll reach those population numbers localtalent is suggesting unless this new development has something to do with increasing fertility rates. :blush::wub:

I predict that all this development will include some much needed light rail.

I'll guess and say 10-15 new towers in GR by 2010.

A national championship for GVSU football each year till 2010.

fertility rates wont be the reason GR would baloon in size. If this development brings 10,000 jobs, and this development makes a company whose HQ is currently scattered across the country look to Grand Rapids to centrally locate in one area, more then likely thats going to drive immigration to the city (All those other offices will have people, people who move to GR)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.