Business & Development

Published June 29, 2016

UTICA — The vacant building near Hall Road and M-53 that formerly housed a Borders bookstore will be home to a 2nd & Charles, the second such store in the state of Michigan.

“We’re excited that this is a similar kind of business and that it spreads itself between new and used books, but also music and a coffee shop and a gathering spot,” Utica Mayor Jacqueline Noonan said. “Being a real advocate of literacy, I think this is a great addition to the mixed-use area.”

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Published June 29, 2016

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — A request for a conditional rezoning for a 55-acre sports complex in Macomb Township was rejected by the Macomb Township Board of Trustees during a June 22 meeting.

The township’s Planning Commission recommended denial of the request during a June 7 planning meeting when the petitioner, Elite Sport Ventures, presented its project.

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Published June 27, 2016

BERKLEY — After outcry from Berkley residents, a proposed form-based code that would have allowed a variety of housing options has been withdrawn by the City Council.

The announcement of the withdrawal was made at the June 20 council meeting, where a crowd cheered the decision to cancel the plans for the code, along with an open house that would have taken place the next day, on June 21, for the public to ask questions and get more information about the proposed code.

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Published June 27, 2016

ST. CLAIR SHORES — With a fitness center expansion, new paint, new ceilings, new kitchen equipment and more, City Council approved the site plan for the Senior Activities Center expansion and renovation June 20.

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Published June 22, 2016

MADISON HEIGHTS — They say a picture is worth a thousand words — so video must be worth even more. For businesses, video can be a powerful marketing tool, conveying the appeal of a product or service in a visually memorable way.

For the next E-Lounge — short for Entrepreneur Lounge — the topic will be how businesses can use video media to develop their brand on social media. Apps such as Snapchat and Periscope will be discussed.

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Published June 15, 2016

FARMINGTON/FARMINGTON HILLS/NOVI — Technological advances wait for no one. 

The times have caught up with the South West Oakland Cable Commission, which recently closed after turning 34 this year.

SWOCC Studios — a local cable commission broadcasting in Farmington, Farmington Hills and Novi on channels 8, 12, 13 and 15 — was located at 33300 W. Nine Mile Road in Farmington.

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Published June 15, 2016

ROYAL OAK — Beaumont Health officials gathered June 8 for a topping off ceremony for the hospital’s $120.8 million emergency center, which officials plan to open next year.

“Everything is on schedule and moving along, and we’re within budget and looking to open the new addition in late spring of 2017,” said Beaumont Project Executive Art Eckert.

Eckert said the new Beaumont Hospital emergency center will include the latest technological advances, new equipment, 125 private rooms with sliding glass doors, and no more curtains.

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Published June 15, 2016

ST. CLAIR SHORES — Reflecting the fact that the city has only three liquor licenses left to give, City Council, after much debate, put additional restrictions on a new business owner coming into the city before granting him one of those three licenses.

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Published June 15, 2016

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — Public discussions began at a June 7 Macomb Township Planning Commission meeting for a possible 55-acre sports complex that would be located at the intersection of 23 Mile Road and Romeo Plank.

Elite Sport Ventures, a group that operates Elite Indoor Sports off of Hayes Road in Shelby Township, petitioned the commission for a conditional rezoning request as the first step in the development of the project.

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Published June 13, 2016

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — A local eyesore on the southwest corner of 21 Mile Road and Van Dyke Avenue will soon be razed and replaced by a mattress store and likely a restaurant with a drive-thru window.

The former Big Boy restaurant, which closed in 2011, has become derelict over the past five years, with holes in the roof and extensive damage to both the exterior and interior of the building.

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Published June 1, 2016

FERNDALE — At last week’s Ferndale City Council meeting, the council unanimously approved licenses for a proposed brewery.

The licenses in question were a microbrewer license and a small winemaker license for Axle Brewing Co., which is looking to build a production facility that also would include a tasting area for patrons and a small outdoor beer garden at 567 Livernois Ave., named Livernois Tap & Brewery. It would act as the public face of the company, whereas the main production of the product currently is in Royal Oak.

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Published June 1, 2016

WEST BLOOMFIELD — In the coming years, the Orchard Lake Road corridor will receive a facelift as a new amendment to the township center district ordinance requires specific criteria for developers to follow, whether they are improving existing buildings or erecting new structures. 

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Published June 1, 2016

ROYAL OAK — About 140 people filled the Churchill Community Education Center auditorium May 24 to learn more about the proposed $100 million Royal Oak Civic Center development.

Factors affecting the project were discussed, including the hows and the whys from the city’s perspective regarding the project, which would build a new police headquarters and City Hall.

The existing City Hall was built in 1952 for $473,061, which City Manager Don Johnson said would cost about $4.3 million today.

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Published June 1, 2016

ROYAL OAK — Visiting Engraving Specialist in the business’s  modified Washington Street house was like walking into an era when customer service included a long conversation about how the family was doing.

This level of kinship has come to a close, as partners Dick Lang and Kent Randall have decided to retire after more than four decades of helping clients with myriad engraving needs.

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Published May 28, 2016

HARRISON TOWNSHIP — A local businessman is planning to expand his reputation in the local boat sales and service trade with a proposed new marina development on an area of vacant land at the northeast corner of Metropolitan Parkway and Prentiss Street.

During a May 19 Harrison Township Planning Commission Meeting, Tom Raguso, owner of Sundog Marina/Sun Sport Marine on South River Road, presented his vision for a piece of 795 feet of frontage just west of Lake St. Clair Metropark.

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Published May 27, 2016

HARRISON TOWNSHIP — The county’s new $30 million pump station was unveiled during a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Harrison Township May 19.

Located at 35029 Union Lake Road, the new pumping station — an essential part of the Macomb-Oakland Sewer Interceptor Project — replaces an aged and temporary pumping station built in 1973.

The Clintondale Pump Station works to protect consumers’ basements from flooding while also enabling continued population growth and economic development in the eastern part of Macomb County, according to officials.

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Published May 25, 2016

FERNDALE — At the Tuesday, May 17, Ferndale Public Schools Board of Education meeting, the board voted unanimously to sell the former Wilson Elementary School and Taft Digital Learning Center to an Oakland County development company.

The board voted 6-0 to sell the sites to Robertson Brothers Homes for about $1 million. Robertson Brothers Homes will develop the Wilson and Taft sites into single-family homes and townhouses, respectively.

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Published May 25, 2016

ST. CLAIR SHORES — Seeking to “blend a traditional Italian market experience with a modern approach to casual dining,” the son-in-law and daughter of the original owners of the building at 27919 Harper Ave. hope to restore it to greatness and bring a unique shopping and dining experience to St. Clair Shores.

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Published May 25, 2016

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Sit back, kick up your feet and dive into the popcorn.

As the moviegoing experience has changed with the advent of options available to individuals, some theaters are trying to bring the comfort of the living room to the silver screen.

MJR Digital Cinemas recently announced a $2.7 million renovation that will take place at Cinema 14 — more commonly known as the theater inside The Mall at Partridge Creek in Clinton Township.

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Published May 23, 2016

EASTPOINTE — The Eastpointe City Council approved a special land use permit 4-0 for MySpace Storage at the council’s regular meeting May 17.

The proposed storage facility would be located at the former Colonial Dodge property at the northeast corner of Stephens and Gratiot.

Architect Peter Stuhlreyer told council they hope to use the bulk of the existing structure there for a modern facility, retaining the showroom and much of the frontage while adding a retail space at the corner and landscaping to make the area more visually interesting.

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