The interest shown for the downtown Okemos property where The MARC and former Central Fire Station structures sit on Okemos Road has drawn considerable interest. Given the amount of attention the site has received, the Township Board will be keeping the vision of the Township in mind when considering developers for the site. Making positive changes to the area will require keeping that vision at the forefront while also selecting a developer who is financially stable, has an outstanding reputation, and will develop the site to match the Township’s future master plan.
In order to accomplish this, we formed a small committee consisting of economic developers, 2-3 Township Board members, Planning Commissioners, a member of the Economic Development Corporation (EDC), and a resident of the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) neighborhood. There are many development opportunities in the region and the Township is honored to have developers show high interest in the property. The goal is to have mixed use development for commercial and residential, which will hopefully have a coattail effect on other area businesses. With just 18 units allowed, the ability for a developer to make the numbers work is rather difficult, but we are confident we will be able to move forward as we’ve seen businesses continually show confidence that Meridian is a community of choice. We believe a developer will see the value of choosing this site in downtown Okemos and will make Meridian their choice.
Tentative Downtown Okemos Redevelopment Project Timeline:
Committee formed May 7th
Evaluate proposals in May
Final selection by the Township Board in June
Planning Commission and Township Board site plan approval process remainder of 2015
Construction in 2016
Keeping the project moving forward will be imperative for rebuilding this section of the Township and attracting people to the area. Downtown Okemos is one of the major focal points of the community and we are focusing on what we can do with this project which will be a catalyst for a redevelopment in the area.