Excitement and work crews are abuzz in downtown East Jordan as demolition and debris removal kick off a redevelopment project on the corner of Main and Mill Street. The project, which will result in a two-story restaurant and two retail spaces, received unanimous approval at a June Planning Commission meeting. The restaurant will have entrances from both Main and Spring streets with outdoor dining on both levels that offer views of the Jordan River, Memorial Park and marina. The building will have an elevator in the common space for access to the upper level. Rockford Construction of Grand Rapids is slated to begin construction this fall with an expected completion date in late 2016.
The project is anticipated to be a $2.1 million investment in the downtown with job creation of more than two dozen full and part-time employees. In order to make the project economically feasible, the developers requested the City of East Jordan to establish a Commercial Redevelopment District (CRD) around the property. The CRD designation was granted by the City Commission in July which enables the property owner to apply for a Commercial Facilities Exemption Certificate (a.k.a. tax abatement). NLEA staff has been hired to assist the company and community through the CRD and tax abatement application process.
Cannonball LLC, a recently formed development group, is undertaking this project. The group is made up of several families from East Jordan who grew up in the area and are interested in making a positive impact in the community. Once construction is underway, their next challenge will be to find suitable tenants for the building. Businesses with a track record of success and quality will be sought out to fill both the restaurant and retail spaces. Cannonball LLC members are hopeful that this project will continue to spur economic development in East Jordan and throughout the region.