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DEQ awards Grand Rapids $330,000 to redevelop brownfield site

Red Lion restaurant sign in Grand Rapids
Rolin Stone Timmerman - Flickr
Former Red Lion restauarant is the brownfield site developers want to convert into a restaurant and new housing units.

A $330,000 state grant will help redevelop a contaminated site in Grand Rapids.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality approved the grant for the brownfield site earlier this week.

Kara Wood, who oversees the city’s Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, says the grant moves the project forward.

“So this approval helps them cross that starting line to get started on those environmental activities in order to demolish the building and construct the project that they intend to build,” Wood said.

The developers of the $11.4 million project plan to build 44 residential units on top of a restaurant at the former Red Lion restaurant. Wood say about 30 percent, or 13 units, will be for unsubsidized affordable housing.

Wood says the contaminated soil at the site isn’t harmful to visitors right now.

“But certainly something that has to be remedied before they can renovate the property,” she said.

Wood says that this development will create new jobs.

“There will be about 20 permanent jobs from the project and another 35 temporary ones,” she said.

Bryce Huffman was Michigan Radio’s West Michigan Reporter and host of Same Same Different. He is currently a reporter for Bridge Detroit.
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