Pilates studio coming to Mack Avenue

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published January 14, 2021


GROSSE POINTE CITY — For those who vowed to make 2021 the year they get in shape, a forthcoming new business is going to make that goal easier to achieve.

Feeling Good Feeling Great LLC will be opening a Pilates studio called the Corner Studio at 17200 Mack Ave., at the corner of Mack and Loraine Street. The Grosse Pointe City Council voted unanimously in favor of a special use request and site plan for the business during a meeting Dec. 14 over Zoom.

“They’re not modifying the building footprint in any way,” City Planner Julie Connochie, of McKenna Associates, said. “It meets all current zoning requirements.”

Connochie noted that fitness centers, dance studios, yoga studios and similar uses are permissible in the RO-1 district with special use approval.

“There’s no negative impact to the surrounding neighborhood,” Connochie said. “This is really a boutique fitness use.”

She said there are only going to be a maximum of five employees and not more than 11 to 12 students in the building at any time, since the largest group class will have five participants and many students will opt for private instruction. Connochie said the owners won’t be playing loud music or otherwise creating a noise issue for neighbors.

The split-level building is 2,473 square feet and will feature two studios on the main level and two studios on the lower level. Connochie said all four studios will rarely be used simultaneously; normally, there will be one group class and two private lessons taking place at the same time. Hours of operation will be 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays, 6 a.m. to noon Saturdays and 8 a.m. to noon Sundays.

Because the peak use times will be before and after regular workweek business hours, Connochie said the studio will be compatible with other businesses in the area as far as a demand for parking.

Although there are no plans to change the building footprint, improvements are being made to the structure and parking. City Councilman John Stempfle said some of the bricks “really aren’t in good shape,” so he had “no problem” with the new owners’ plan to paint the bricks white.

As part of its approval, the council called for the small single parking space behind the building to be reserved as a turnaround and not permanent parking. The building also has a small side parking lot and several nearby on-street spaces, Connochie said.

“It’s going to be a vast improvement to that unsightly building,” said City Councilman Donald Parthum Jr., who lives nearby.  “I think it’s going to be a great addition to our neighborhood. … I applaud the job they’ve done.”

Studio proprietor Aimee Abraham said they hope to attract students in a wide range of ages, from their 20s to their 80s.

“Pilates is really good for all ages,” Abraham said. “It’s good for stretching and arthritis. It’s all about spine longevity.”

Abraham said some even consider Pilates a type of physical therapy.