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Grand Rapids skyscraper listed in foreclosure auction

Grand Rapids skyline
John Eisenschenk
Creative Commons
Bridgewater Place is the blue building on the far left.

One of the biggest office buildings in Grand Rapids is listed for sale at a public foreclosure auction next month. The 17-story sleek blue-glass Bridgewater Place dramatically changed the city’s skyline when it was built in the early 90s. Many people refer to the building as the Varnum building, because of the law firms’ prominent logo near the top floor. Varnun rents the tops 6 floors.

Mortgage lender GMACput notice in the latest edition of the Grand Rapids Legal News that it would auction off the 400,000 square-foot skyscraper to the highest bidder in the lobby of the Kent County Courthouse January 26th. Owners apparently defaulted on the loan. The notice says they owe $36,897,421.59 on the loan.

Peter Fotieo is with Signature Associates, the leasing agency that manages the building. In an email Fotieo says he don’t expect the sale will actually happen because he says the buildings’ owners have been working with lenders for “quite some time and hope to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.” Either way, he says a foreclosure sale would not affect tenants in the office building.

Officials from the city of Grand Rapids have told local media outlets they don’t expect a foreclosure would affect the city either.

Lindsey Smith helps lead the station'sAmplify Team. She previously served as Michigan Public's Morning News Editor, Investigative Reporter and West Michigan Reporter.
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