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michaelskis

Grand Rapids, June 2106?

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After looking at the Grand Rapids Then and Now thread, I started to think about what the future of Grand Rapids will be like. Like many cities, development in Grand Rapids has gone in cycles. Right now, we are on the up swing of one of these. But how will it change Grand Rapids? What will the demographics be like in the future? Will it lure young fresh out of college creative class adults? Will it increase the blue color factory/assembly plant demographic? Will it become a hub for some specific aspect of commerce? Or will it go in an entirely different direction.

What do you think it will be like in 10, 20, 50 or 100 years? Why do you think it will be like this? How would you want it to be? What can you as a citizen do to see that it becomes that way?

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That's a tough one michaelskis. I don't see Grand Rapids being a hotbed for blue-collar jobs in 10 years. I think GR will capture a lot of young people from other parts of the State looking for more opportunity, but maybe not finding it in their hometowns. Mainly from upper Mid-Michigan nd Saginaw/Midland/Bay City area, where they will continue to see declining populations and shrinking job markets.

It will be interesting to see if the healthcare industry becomes the catalyst for growth that so many are forecasting. I am also anxious to see this current downtown boom that we are moving into carry on to a two-decade boom, instead of tapering off. I think that will only come if investments start to come in from outside the area.

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10 Years:

After many tries construction finally ends on the RiverMoch Harbor site on Monroe Avenue. Construction began in 2009 in earnest with the final blessing of the city when all three bids were given, creating a striking conflict of interest. Duane Faust took control of the entertainment, Joe Moch took control of the condominiums, and the Buffalo company built and designed the marina portion, which now offers ferries that travel to the lakeshore. THis in turn helps spark the construction of Grand Rapid's first rail mass transit system.

20 Years:

The country is in the midst of a government collapse as the last remaining babyboomers start to collect social security. In this time of crisis Grand Rapids continues to grow after scientists at the Cook - Devos - Lena Meijer research center continue to churn out medical treatments. This prompts the movement of three biotech corporate HQs to the area. Construction on their respective HQs begins in 2023, and ends in 2027.

50 Years:

After a snag in the local economy that hit Grand Rapids Hard in the 2030s, which has been called "The worst depression since the 2000s" the 2050s are a major rebound for the area. Since most forms of transportation now are irrelevent, Grand rapids is ahead in the curve and installs its first "human non-vehicular transport" system. This great achievement is rewarded with a monument featuring a man being stuffed into a transport pod.

100 Years:

Grand Rapids has now become "New Amsterdam" after its has spread out to the lakeshore. After 70 years of development, Grand Rapids has outgrown, and annexed many communities, but little East Grand Rapids still refuses to consider itself a part of the greater "New Amsterdam" whole.

(It really is too hard to predict much more then 20 years down the line)

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With all the new medical/research facilities coming on line I envision Grand Rapids in 20 years similar to the movie "Cocoon".

:unsure:

I dunno. I really think that in 50 years Grand Rapids will be what Detroit was . . . all the major sports teams will be located over here; the corridor between GR and the lakeshore will be suburban/mixed use/retail; and there will be light rail transportation between the two areas.

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Let's see here. What does the future have in store for this burg in the mid-west.

By 2026: Wal-Mart is beginning to crack under ever increasing pressure from anti-Wal-Mart NIMBY's, Grassroot orgs, and countless worker abuse Lawsuits. Thus Wal-Mart begins its slow a painful decline. With Fred Meijer's passing and seeing Wal-Mart's woes, the Meijer family transforms Meijer, Inc from a privatly own company to a publicly owned entity. With its coffers filled from investors, Meijer begins a relentless expansion beyond hits Mid-West boundries which further aggravates Wal-Mart's decline. Maijer build's some neew stores from the ground up. However it save alot of money and avoids NIBMY's by purchasing and converting empty Wal-Mart Supercenters into Meijer Stores as Wal-Mart closes and sells off store after store.

Back in GR all of the approved developements and those currently under consturction will have been completed giving the Downtown a more dense feel.

The Van Andel Arena will expand to 16,000 seats.

The Rapid is well underway in installing a BRT system that will serve GR and Surronding Communities.

GR sells City Hall and Culder Plaza to Alticore who promptly builds a 40 story hotel to serve the Convention Center and a 60 story building for its new world HQ.

By 2030: Urban Sprawl completely fills in M-45 from Wilson Ave. west to US-31. Sprawl along M-37 will have advanced all the way to Sparta and beyond. Sprawl south of GR will reach the county line and beyond. The Corridor to Rockford will be solid sprawl. The Corridor to Holland along I-196 will completely fill in with sprawl. The rest of Kent County is filling up fast. as the Greater Grand Rapids Metro Area climbs to 1.8 million people.

Meijer will have doubled in size and revenue thanks to Wal-Mart's continued decline. It builds a new Corprate HQ in Downtown adding to a skyline that is quickly geting denser and higher.

When Gas prices climb to $20.00 a gallon, federal government will finally mandate that all new cars be required to run on alternative fuels reducing air pollution.

By 2035: The Detroit Lions and the Detroit Tigers will become the Grand Rapids Lions and the Grand Rapids Tigers. After a heated battle between the city and NIMBY's New Statiums to house the Teams will be on Wealthy Street and Division. With these new venues the surrounding area explodes from "ghetto" to red hot realestate attacting more retail entertainment and mid to high end condos. Of Course the Stadiums were heavily funded by the VanAndals and the DeVoses.

BRT system has matured and, due to continued rise in energy costs, is in heavy Use. Comuter Rail system to connect Muskegon, Grand Haven, Holland, and GR is under construction.

Detroit continues to decline. As a result Detroiters dispurse from their city and surrounding 'inner burbs to move eles where. Many Motor City bussinesses and people move to GR furthering it's growth.

By 2040: The Greater GR metro area reaches 3 million people. The Core City's population reaches 600,000. Gentrification happens in the city's poorer sections due to a redhot real estate market caused by the influx of people from a dying Detroit, and suburbanites tired of the long commute times and the continued rise in energy costs and thus seeking to be closer to shoping, jobs, and entertainment.

Due to overwhelming automobile congestion the city enactes what is known as Congestion Pricing, a toll system that charges a fee to those entering the city by private automobile. Also Michigan is still struggling to maintain a stable economy. So as a measure to reduce costs of maintaining its road systems, it makes all freeways and major arterial roads tollways.

BY 2050: The congestion pricing and tolls combined with rising energy costs touches off the decline of the suburbs and an end to further urban sprawl as people begin pooring back into the core city in order to give up their cars. This further rises the cost of realestate in GR and on the other hand a sharp decline in suburban areas. With Gentrifecation forcing the poor out of the city they have no choice but the flee to the suburbs where homes are now dirt cheap. With the poor comes high crime excelarating the mass migration of more afluent classes back into the core city.

By 2100: The City of Grand Rapids is now a prosperous city thanks to the afluent classes that have moved back in. Quality of Life is very high. With Commuter rails, BRT's, and other modes of mass transit coupled with petestrian friendly streets getting around could never be easier. Everyrhing is looking very good for GR. But outside the city, it is the suburbs and rural areas that are now the "ghettos". These ghettos are even worst than those that once plagued the city. Because they are so wide spread Law Enforcment is not very effective. All other mid size and large metro areas followed a simillar history with the afluent moving into the core cities and the poor fleeing into the suburbs.

By 2150: Unable to enforce the law in the suburbs due to their shear expanse, the federal government and state governments provide core cities with funds to impliment security measures such as check points, fences and even Berlin Wall style berriers to protect the city. Grand Rapids impliments a fence barrier and check points while East Grand Rapids puts up a wall.

The whole Detriot Metro Area is dead, a Ghost Town where lawlessness abounds. The People of West Michigan refer to the remaining Detroiters as the "forgotten ones".

By 2160: With the US Government crumbling under the weight of debts from deficit spending and unable to maintain order, the US collapes as a Nation. Thus cities including Grand Rapids will become like their mideval counterparts; fortress cities with walls protecting the afluent and civilized from the outside world which now looks like a scene from Mad Max. This "Second Dark Age" will last for 300 years untill the next great power rises up and restores Civilization.

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you guys are creepy.

Here's one for you, in 2030 Suzanne Geha Dies, and has her body kryogenically frozen. She is placed in a holding cell next to Morgan Fairchild. In 2080 the Van Andel Institue developes technology to curb aging and create life altogether. Suzanne and Morgan are unfrozen. And "re-animated". They go on together having a comback making a sitcom in the style of Odd Couple. Oh, and Craig Jamison is still alive, and still reporting weather at News 8. Which is now the only television in the Metro GR area. This happened because it was the only television station safely located in the city. in 2020, a group of Vigilante's known as the "Urbanplanites". Started waging a war on the suburbs, Starting by Blowing up Alpine Avenue. All the streets in GR were turned into sidewalks, because mayor Veloise, made it illegal to drive cars. The Federal Government, and NASA in a joint effort cut a 36 square mile chunk of land out of Kent County which was due northeast of Grand Rapids. It was once known as "Grand Rapids Township". It was ammended to the US constitution in 2025, everyone in the country was sick and tired of hearing the residents of this place, beotch everytime someone wanted to build something there. So It was placed on the moon, where noone wanted to build, and nothing ever changed. So it turned into a win win situation for everyone. The crater that was left was turned into "NIMBY national park". Oh yeah, and everyone walks around wearing white robes handing out pamphlets to each other, saying peace be with you brother. There is no crime and peace on earth, because they flew GR Township to the moon.

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you guys are creepy.

Here's one for you, in 2030 Suzanne Geha Dies, and has her body kryogenically frozen. She is placed in a holding cell next to Morgan Fairchild. In 2080 the Van Andel Institue developes technology to curb aging and create life altogether. Suzanne and Morgan are unfrozen. And "re-animated". They go on together having a comback making a sitcom in the style of Odd Couple. Oh, and Craig Jamison is still alive, and still reporting weather at News 8. Which is now the only television in the Metro GR area. This happened because it was the only television station safely located in the city. in 2020, a group of Vigilante's known as the "Urbanplanites". Started waging a war on the suburbs, Starting by Blowing up Alpine Avenue. All the streets in GR were turned into sidewalks, because mayor Veloise, made it illegal to drive cars. The Federal Government, and NASA in a joint effort cut a 36 square mile chunk of land out of Kent County which was due northeast of Grand Rapids. It was once known as "Grand Rapids Township". It was ammended to the US constitution in 2025, everyone in the country was sick and tired of hearing the residents of this place, beotch everytime someone wanted to build something there. So It was placed on the moon, where noone wanted to build, and nothing ever changed. So it turned into a win win situation for everyone. The crater that was left was turned into "NIMBY national park". Oh yeah, and everyone walks around wearing white robes handing out pamphlets to each other, saying peace be with you brother. There is no crime and peace on earth, because they flew GR Township to the moon.

Yes!! :rofl:

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You all should see the movie 1984 sometime (a novel was written about this in 1948) . As funny and interesting what you guys wrote, who knows what will happen tomorrow! :thumbsup:

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You all should see the movie 1984 sometime (a novel was written about this in 1948) . As funny and interesting what you guys wrote, who knows what will happen tomorrow! :thumbsup:

Only difference is that Grand Rapids will be lead by a authoritarian super-computer, containing the collective minds of the Meijers, the DeVoses, and the VanAndels. Said Super-Computer, is infamously known by all as the Trinity.

Oh they would like you to believe that the new Marriott under construction is just a hotel to serve the convention crowds. But really they are not building a hotel, they are building The Trinity as we speak. The prototype is housed in a bunker deep below Fredrik Meijer Gardens When the Grand Opening of "the Meriott" happens in 2007, all three families will upload their brain patterns and when that's done, we commoners will be saying "All hail the Trinity" in no time as microchips are implanted in our heads are activated to turn us all into worker drones.

Once Grand Rapids is under the Trinity's control. The VanAndel Medical reserch lab will be used to create genetically engineered super soldiers that will conquere the World in the name of the Trinity.

Thus begins a new world order! :w00t:

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Only difference is that Grand Rapids will be lead by a authoritarian super-computer, containing the collective minds of the Meijers, the DeVoses, and the VanAndels. Said Super-Computer, is infamously known by all as the Trinity.

Oh they would like you to believe that the new Marriott under construction is just a hotel to serve the convention crowds. But really they are not building a hotel, they are building The Trinity as we speak. The prototype is housed in a bunker deep below Fredrik Meijer Gardens When the Grand Opening of "the Meriott" happens in 2007, all three families will upload their brain patterns and when that's done, we commoners will be saying "All hail the Trinity" in no time as microchips are implanted in our heads are activated to turn us all into worker drones.

Once Grand Rapids is under the Trinity's control. The VanAndel Medical reserch lab will be used to create genetically engineered super soldiers that will conquere the World in the name of the Trinity.

Thus begins a new world order! :w00t:

Your thoughts intrigue me, may I sign up for your newsletter?

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ok im going to say something thats not totally phsyco here, to try and send this topic in the right direction (although you guys are funny). in 10-20 years, i am hoping to see U.S. 131 (S-curv) pushed out to the west side by the hill, and I-196 pushed north between Leanord and Ann st. to make way for the expansion of dowtown grand rapid. hopefully faust's rivergrand will work out, and gr will become the nashville of urban music. market ave will become the Times Square of gr, where MTV and VH1 will move their studios. Devos will move his Orlando Magic to gr, and the White Caps will enter the MLB, becoming arch rivals with the Tigers.

and one last thing. everyone in southeast michigan will move over here, because the entire detriot area is going to become a waste site for hazardous material for the feds.

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Don't knock the Detroit area! It's one of my favorite places.

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Relative to the spectrum of large cities, GR will remain a midsize city for a long time. We'll have all that jazz that comes with being a big city, all the cool stuff.

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I see it growing to the high end of the mid range perhaps, but I don't think it will get bigger than say a Metropolitan Nashville or anthing.

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That was me trying to be politely modest :). Ask me not to be modest, and we are pretty good size built environment -- ok, huge.

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Don't knock the Detroit area! It's one of my favorite places.

actually ive never been to the immediate detroit city, ive only been to northern oakland county (at the palace for a pistons game a few times) but it seemed really boring to me. maybe it gets more interesting as you get closer to the city?

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believe me when I say that while GR is outstanding and fun. It still doesn't hold a can over Metro Detroit and the things to do there. Not to mention the shopping. The palace, is not a good gauge. It's in the vast expansive exurb of Auburn Hills. Aside from the palace its largely a bedroom community.

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The current "S-curve" will serve the city for at least another 40 years until traffic volumes and an end to its service life force the city and state to overhual that whole stretch of road. Also, the 131 / 196 interchange will become an aggravating bottle neck in that time. (Not that it is now.) So 40 to 50 years from now the city and state will look to Boston's "Big Dig" project for inspiration and rebuild the S-Curve, the 131 / 196 interchange and the stretches of those express ways cutting though downtown in undergound tunnels. No longer constrained by the elevated highways and innerchanges the tunnels replaced, downtown is free to expand southward to Wealthy street, northward to Leonard St., and west across the Grand River to Seward Ave.

The space 131 on the westside of the River once cut through will allow GVSU to expand their downtown campus with more class rooms. To accamadate the influx of students GVSU will buy out and demolish the blocks of housing between Seward Ave. and Lexington Ave. To make way for new dorms. With a bigger DT campus GVSU changes the demographics of the near West Side from blue collar to mostly college students complete with frat houses.

The Big Dig was an expensive project, but 40 to 50 years of improving the methods used to build the big dig will dramatically lower the costs.

But I maybe being to optamistic. But I would love to see the wall US-131 has formed along Mt. Vernon Ave. disappear.

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I don't think I can see a Big Dig happening, But 40-50 years from now I could see 131 being pushed back some if downtown development is unable to push through to the other side (which I think could be possible, although there would still be a bit of a pedestrian gap. Perhaps the Blue Bridge could close to pedestrian traffic and instead run short passenger trolleys running from traditional downtown to GVSU. I think that if given the proper nudges, a second DT area could slowly develop around GVSU, especially if River Grand gets built and provides a pedestrian bridge to the other side of the river.)

The downtown development will have to expand somewhere. Blocked by the historic district to the east, i-196 to the north, and 131 to the west, the south is the future.. but south isn't the only direction it needs to go, it will need to be pushed across the highway as well.

As far as suburban development goes, I can see the southern edge extending towards Dorr, with almost a corridor of suburban life along the highway surrounded by rural life on the west and east sides. I also can see the whole area closed in by M-6 being completely filled in, spilling over to the southeast sides of M-6. I can see Caledonia being connected to the city completely, and another suburban corridor extending west to Allendale.

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Lost of interesting ideas

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Here's a quick rendering, I did, of what GR's skyline may looklike 20 or so years down the road. It includes projects currently under construction and some wishful thinking.

My GR Skyline Vision

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haha, I like that Meijer building in there ;D

Although I think your placement of the JW is a little too far south

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Here is one of my posts from a year ago in response to Daddy-O's "Next Big Announcement, You Make the Call" thread.

Here are my thoughts about Downtown's West side:

1. The West side will see a surge of growth due to the GVSU expansion. The buildings along Front Street, south of Fulton will be redeveloped. Either DeVries redevelops their building along Fulton and the S-Curve, or they'll sell it, and the new owner will turn it into condos/apartments to compete with the GVSU dorms. 280 Front Street has a lot of potential as well. A canoe drop in will be placed south of the fishladder, connecting to Millennium Park.

1b. In an effort to help the City out with the budget, the Parking Commission will sell off the surface parking lots, north of Fulton. The new YWCA's front door facade will face a small parking lot and multiple buildings.

1c. Since Mercantile's new building on Leonard towers the buildings along the river, Front Street property owners will sell their lots to developers.

My biggest wish is that the S-Curve/131 (from Ann to Wealthy Street) and 196 (from Fuller to Lake Michigan Drive) are voted on as being a "view blockers" and will be reclaimed by the City for a waterfront park and to reconnect the north/south streets along 196. Wilson Ave and Three Mile will be rebuilt similar to Lake Shore Drive, to redirect traffic back onto 196 and 131. Portland, Oregon took back Harbor Drive, why can't we?

If I could figure out how to post pictures directly in this message, I could show you some of the beautiful houses that were demolished for 131. We dug out land for 196, to build up 131.

I'll save the east side of the river for later.

Peace,

Grid Girl, the Urban Warrior

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