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Old Posted Mar 12, 2017, 9:48 PM
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KALAMAZOO / PORTAGE / BATTLE CREEK | Development Thread

This thread is for all general developments in the Kalamazoo-Portage-Battle Creek CSA. It will primarily focus on larger-scale developments in these three cities, but smaller developments within these cities and located throughout Kalamazoo & Calhoun Counties may also be included (places like Vicksburg, Galesburg, Parchment, Schoolcraft, Richland, plus the surrounding townships - really anything in the pink areas in the below diagram) -



Currently, census data (as of 2015) puts the CSA population estimate for the region at about 503,000, making it the fourth largest CSA in Michigan (after Detroit, Grand Rapids, and Lansing) and making it the 151st largest CSA in the country. The cities highlighted below are organized by population and are arranged from largest to smallest (2019 estimates) -

Code:
Kalamazoo - Kalamazoo County
Population: 76,200

Source: Instagram | @whiskeyalphadelta

Portage - Kalamazoo County
Population: 49,500

Source: MLive File Photo

Battle Creek - Calhoun County
Population: 51,500

Source: My own photo

Oshtemo Township - Kalamazoo County
Population: 23,200

Source: MLive

Kalamazoo Township - Kalamazoo County
Population: 22,700

Source: WMUK | Sehvilla Mann

Texas Township - Kalamazoo County
Population: 17,100

Source: localharvest.org

Comstock Township - Kalamazoo County
Population: 15,600

Source: Facebook | Comstock Township

Emmett Township - Calhoun County
Population: 11,800

Source: Firekeepers Casino

Richland Township - Kalamazoo County
Population: 8,300

Source: TowerPinkster

Ross Township - Kalamazoo County
Population: 4,900

Source: Michigan Underwater Divers Club

Village of Vicksburg - Kalamazoo County
Population: 3,300

Source: Village of Vicksburg

Galesburg - Kalamazoo County
Population: 2,200

Source: estately.com

Parchment - Kalamazoo County
Population: 2,000

Source: WMUK | Courtesy Kindleberger Park

Village of Schoolcraft - Kalamazoo County
Population: 1,300

Source: Wikipedia

Village of Richland - Kalamazoo County
Population: 800

Source: Jaqua Realtors
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Last edited by deja vu; Mar 18, 2021 at 10:24 PM.
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Old Posted Mar 14, 2017, 12:12 AM
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Project Rundown

(reserved for project rundown)

Unless noted otherwise, all projects for each location are arranged first by status, then by cost, if known (most to least expensive).

Status Order:
  • under-construction (listed first)
  • approved / proposed (listed second)
  • completed (listed third, newest to oldest)
  • cancelled / demolished (listed last)

Kalamazoo

Code:
Graphic Packaging International Expansion, under construction ($600 million)
1810 N Pitcher St.

Source: City of Kalamazoo

WMU "Hilltop Village", multi-phase, under construction (~ $500+ million)
(general location)

Source: WMU

Kalamazoo County Downtown Justice Facility, under construction ($95 million)
(general location)

Source: MLive | Courtesy TowerPinkster

I-94 widening & Portage Road interchange rebuild, under construction ($87 million)
(general location)

Source: MLive | Courtesy MDOT

Catalyst 12, under construction ($70+ million)
180 E Water St.

Source: LinkedIn | Matthew Higgenbotham (CSM Group)

WMU Student Center and Dining Facility, under construction ($70+ million)
(general location)

Source: WMU

Heritage Community of Kalamazoo - Revel Creek, under construction ($50 million)
2400 Portage St.

Source: City of Kalamazoo Site Plan Review

Harrison Circle Apartments, under construction ($15 million)
(general location)

Source: AVB

Gospel Ministries Women & Children's Shelter, under construction ($10 million)
(general location)

Source: WKZO | Courtesy Kalamazoo Gospel Ministries

Kalamazoo Farmers' Market Expansion, under construction ($10 million)
251 Mills St.

Source: City of Kalamazoo

Westgate Commons, under construction (~ $6 million?)
615 W Kalamazoo Ave.

Source: GRBJ

LodgeHouse / Knights Inn Conversion, under construction (~ $5 million?)
1211 S. Westnedge Ave.

Source: City of Kalamazoo / INFORM Architecture

Kalamazoo Latvian Church, under construction (~ $2 million?)
100 Cherryhill St.

Source: LinkedIn | Intersect Studio

The Monroe Building restoration, under construction (~ $2 million?)
151 E Michigan Ave.

Source: LinkedIn | Treystar

Kalsee Credit Union, Milwood Branch, under construction (~ $1.5 million?)
3121 Portage St.

Source: Kalsee Credit Union

Hard Rock Reverb Hotel & Gibson Guitar Museum, proposed (~ $35+ million?)
225 Parsons St.

Source: WWMT | Contributed

400 Rose Phase 2, proposed ($26.2 million)
234 W Cedar St.

Source: Wood TV 8 | Courtesy MEDC

Edison Environmental Science Academy rebuild, proposed (~ $20 million?)
924 Russell St.

Source: City of Kalamazoo

140 S Edwards St. Redevelopment, proposed ($18+ million?)
140 S Edwards St.

Source: miplace.org

Porter & E North St Development, proposed ($12.8 million)
(general location)

Source: WWMT | Courtesy PlazaCorp LLC

266 E. Michigan Ave. apartment conversion, proposed (~ $4 million?)
(location)

Source: City of Kalamazoo

Consumers Credit Union-Parkview, mixed-use, proposed (~ $3.5 million?)
3110 Oakland Dr.

Source: City of Kalamazoo | Bosch Architecture

RAIR Dispensary, proposed (~ $1.5 million?)
104 / 110 N Drake Rd.

Source: City of Kalamazoo / RAIR

Yuma Way, proposed (~ $1 million?)
617 Portage St.

Source: City of Kalamazoo | Driven Design

Whitley Memorial Funeral Home, proposed (~ $1 million?)
(general location)

Source: City of Kalamazoo | Intersect Studio / Hurley & Stewart

New Fraternity near WMU, proposed (~ $500,000?)
1709 Fraternity Village Dr.

Source: City of Kalamazoo

Home2 Suites, completed May 2021 (~ $28 million?)
(general location)

Source: MLive

Eastside City Life Teen Center, completed March 2021 ($3 million)
2528 E. Main St.

Source: GRBJ | Courtesy CD Barnes

The Creamery, completed March 2021 ($14.7 million)
corner of Lake and Portage Sts.

Source: kalamazoolteracy.org

Eastside Neighborhood Zoning Changes, implemented February 2021
(Eastside Neighborhood general location)

Source: Imagine Kalamazoo

Bronson's Frank J. Sardone Cancer Pavilion, completed February 2021 ($60 million)
805 John St.

Source: Contributed

Oakland Drive Office Building, completed early 2021 (~ $1 million?)
(general location)

Source: LinkedIn | AVB

WMU Arcadia Flats Apartments, completed January 2021 ($60 million)
1760 Ring Rd S

Source: MLive | Joel Bissell

Chick-fil-A, West Main & Drake, completed January 2021 (Kalamazoo's first)
504 N Drake Rd.

Source: My own photo

St. Augustine Cathedral Upgrades, completed late 2020 ($2.8 million)
542 W Michigan Ave.

Source: Miller Davis

400 Rose Phase 1, completed Summer 2020 ($24.2 million)
400 S Rose St.

Source: AVB

The Exchange, completed mid-2020 ($53 million)
155 W Michigan Ave.

Source: Instagram | @byceassociate

WMU Draper and Siedschlag Halls Demolition, complete February 2021 (~ $500,000?)
(general location)

Source: Instagram | @facilities_wmu
Portage

Code:
Pfizer Modular Aseptic Production building (MAP), under construction ($465 million)
(general location)

Source: MEDC | Courtesy Pfizer

Portage Public Schools 2021 Bond Projects, proposed ($175 million)
Replace five elementary schools & remodel one
(multiple locations)
<no image yet>
Source: Mlive

Charles & Lynn Zhang Portage Community Senior Center, under construction ($11 million)
203 East Centre Ave.

Source: MLive | Joel Bissell

Woodbridge Hills Expansion, proposed (~ $12 million?)
(general location)

Source: City of Portage

Portage District Library Remodel & Expansion, approved ($13 million)
300 Library Lane

Source: PDL

Replacement Fire Station No. 2, completed October 2020 ($6 million)
6101 Oakland Dr.

Source: LinkedIn | AVB
Battle Creek

Code:
WMU Aviation Education College Addition, under construction ($24 million)
237 Helmer Rd N

Source: WWMT | Lexie Petrovic

Industrial Partners USA 270,000 SF spec. building, under construction ($11 million)
(general location)

Source: LinkedIn | BCU

99 & 103 W. Michigan Ave. Rehabilitation, under construction (~ $4 million?)
103 W. Michigan Ave.

Source: LinkedIn | BCU

Former Kmart Demolition, in-progress (~ $500,000?)
200 Capital Ave.

Source: The Battle Creek Enquirer

Magna Cosma Casting expansion, proposed ($31.9 million)
10 Clark Rd N

Source: Second Wave Media | Shabaka Gibson / BCU

Housing-First Transition Housing, proposed (~ $6.5 million?)
535 W Van Buren St.
<no image available yet>

The Milton, completed Spring 2021 ($36 million)
25 W Michigan Ave.

Source: Instagram | @michigan business

Bowers Aluminum Expansion, proposed ($7.8 million)
1401 Shiga Dr.

Source: Bowers Aluminum Co.

Kingman Museum, vacant / at-risk
175 Limit St.

Source: Battle Creek Enquirer

Kellogg's Innovation Suite, completed February 2021 (~ $2 million?)
2 Hamblin Ave.

Source: FSR Magazine | Courtesy Kellogg Company

Battle Creek Police Department Station, completed August 2018 ($16 million)
20 N Division St.

Source: Schweitzer, Inc.
Oshtemo Township

Code:
Advia Credit Union HQ, under construction (~ $35 million?)
6400 West Main St.

Source: LinkedIn | Byce & Associates, Inc.

Ascension Borgess Cancer Center, under construction ($20 million)
(general location)

Source: MLive | Courtesy Ascension Borgess

District No. 10 School House Rehabilitation, proposed (~ $1 million?)
near Stadium Dr. and 9th St.

Source: WMUK | Sehvilla Mann











...
Kalamazoo Township

(reserved)

Texas Township

Code:
Camp Rota-Kiwan - a New Kalamazoo County Park, purchased March 2021 ($2 million)
(general location)

Source: Kalamazoo County (modified)





























...
Comstock Township

Code:
Morrow Generating Station, for sale ($1.44 million)
(general location)

Source: WKFR / Loren Souers | Kalamazoo Commercial Real Estate

















...
Emmett Township

Code:
FireKeepers Casino Expansion, under construction (~ $30+ million)
11177 E Michigan Ave. (Emmett Township)

Source: Battle Creek Enquirer | Courtesy Firekeepers Casino




















...
Richland Township

(reserved)

Ross Township

Code:
South Kitchen, completed November 2020 (~ $1 million?)
12454 E D Ave.

Source: Facebook | South Kitchen

























...
Village of Vicksburg

Code:
The Mill at Vicksburg, under construction ($85 million)
300 W Hwy St.

Source: Second Wave Media | Courtesy The Mill at Vicksburg























...
Galesburg

(reserved)

Parchment

(reserved)

Village of Schoolcraft

(reserved)

Village of Richland

(reserved)
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Last edited by deja vu; May 29, 2021 at 2:32 PM. Reason: reformatting for project rundown
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Old Posted Mar 14, 2017, 2:14 AM
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Nice rundown.
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Pittsburgh Rundown III
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Old Posted Mar 15, 2017, 3:35 PM
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Thanks. I will keep expanding it, and hopefully get out and take some photos of my own once the deep freeze ends.

Here's an interesting little project that just wrapped up downtown:

Quote:
Walnut & Park coffee shop to open in downtown Kalamazoo
Al Jones, via MLive
March 02, 2017

KALAMAZOO, MI -- Walnut & Park is the name of a new coffee shop and cafe that is set to open Monday, March 6, in downtown Kalamazoo.

Located at 322 W. Walnut St. (the corner of Walnut & Park), the business is a project of the Kalamazoo Probation Enhancement Program and will put to work men and women who are participants in KPEP's culinary arts program.
KPEP is a private nonprofit residential and outpatient rehabilitation program that serves state and federal criminal offenders, probationers and parolees.

...


Image: Walnut & Park Coffee Shop Exterior
Image Source: MLive
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Last edited by deja vu; Jun 9, 2017 at 11:22 PM.
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Old Posted Mar 16, 2017, 1:58 AM
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2017_03_15 Walking Tour

I took a brief walk after work today to try and capture some recent development. Because it was so bitterly cold, it quickly turned into more of a driving tour than a walking tour. Anyway, below are some random photos of current projects under construction in Kalamazoo and Portage, along with a few recently-completed projects. While walking and driving, I saw several projects that I forgot to include in the original project rundown, so I will be updating that shortly.

Please forgive the low image quality; I took these photos on my crappy iPhone 4, and it was getting near dusk, and I was in motion for most of them. But, enough excuses!

The Foundry
600 E. Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo
(Phase 1, Under Construction)





The People's Food Co-op of Kalamazoo
507 Harrison St, Kalamazoo
(Opened 2011)



Old Douglass Community Center Building
NW corner of N. Pitcher and E. Ransom Streets, Kalamazoo

Not development, but hopefully being restored and repurposed soon.



Here's the same structure, in the 1960s:


Image Source: http://www.migenweb.org/kalamazoo/views.htm

Ministry with Community
440 N. Church St.
(Completed 2016)





This wonderful old Art Deco structure is right next door to the mothballed Old Douglass Community Center Building, and across the street from the new Ministry with Community.



New RX Optical Headquarters
S. Park St, Kalamazoo
(Under Construction)







New Family Health Center
Alcott St. - Edison Neighborhood, Kalamazoo
(Under Construction)





Portage Memory Care Living Facility
710 E. Centre Ave, Portage
(Under Construction)



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Last edited by deja vu; Jul 25, 2020 at 6:43 PM. Reason: fixed photo links
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Old Posted Mar 16, 2017, 2:45 AM
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Kalamazoo is perhaps just a tad more exciting than Battle Creek. But looking at those pics--typical Michigan.
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Old Posted Mar 16, 2017, 4:13 AM
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Updates have been made to the list of active projects at the top of this thread. Updates include:

New project listing & information for:
  • The Foundry - Phase 1
  • New Family Health Center Clinic
  • New RX Optical Headquarters Building

Additionally, all photos have been resized for consistency, and several more photos of active projects have been added.
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Old Posted Mar 16, 2017, 4:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the urban politician View Post
Kalamazoo is perhaps just a tad more exciting than Battle Creek. But looking at those pics--typical Michigan.
Battle Creek...I need to explore there more. For being so close to each other, I feel like the two cities have very different characters. I thought about including Battle Creek in this new development thread, but then I thought it might be too much, at least to start with...

There is some bland infill around here, to be sure, but on the whole, it is exciting to see Kalamazoo's downtown slowly becoming denser, while lots of fringe areas (including several brownfield sites) are seeing renewed efforts at revitalization.
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2017, 10:12 PM
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Updated Project Rundown

I've updated the project rundown to include some more recently completed development. Because this forum is less than one week old, it wasn't around to capture all of these great projects when they were being built. That said, since they are part of the bigger story of development that has been happening here in recent years, I'm including them here for the record.

Completed projects that have been added are as listed below. Scroll to the top post to see images and more info for each. Much more to come.
  • Arcadia Brewing Company / Arcadia Ales
  • Borgess Brain and Spine Institute
  • Bronson Advanced Radiology - Diagnostics Lab and Imaging Center
  • Bronson Commons - New Post-Acute Care Facility
  • Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan - Glowing Embers Council Program & Training Center
  • HARK Orchids, L.P. New Company Headquarters
  • KVCC / Bronson Healthy Living Campus - Food Innovation Building
  • Linden Grove Middle School - Kalamazoo Public Schools
  • Midlink Business Park - a massive business park conversion with over 1.6 million of SF in just two buildings
  • Miller Canfield New Office Building
  • Orrin B. Hayes Mercedes Benz Dealership
  • Stryker Corporate Headquarters
  • Stryker Instruments - Renovations to (2) of its buildings
  • Washington Writers’ Academy - Kalamazoo Public Schools
  • Western Michigan University - Richmond Center for Visual Arts
  • Western Michigan University - Valley Dining Center
  • Western Michigan University - Western View Apartments
  • Western Michigan University - WMed Innovation Center
  • 750 Trade Centre
  • 950 Trade Centre
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Last edited by deja vu; Mar 18, 2017 at 3:55 AM.
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Old Posted Mar 18, 2017, 4:01 AM
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Article about a recent tax break that Stryker received.

Quote:
Stryker Instruments wins tax break from Portage for $154 million development
By Tom Haroldson | Special to MLive
March 15, 2017

PORTAGE, MI - Stryker Instruments has won a Portage tax break for its proposed $154 million research and development facility, and could begin construction in May with a completion anticipated by August 2019.
 
The Public Act 198 tax break for the 485,000 square foot facility at 6520 Portage Road was unanimously approved Tuesday by the Portage City Council. The company expects to retain 966 jobs and create an additional 105.

...
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Last edited by deja vu; Jun 9, 2017 at 11:24 PM.
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Old Posted Mar 19, 2017, 2:27 PM
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Jack White bought George Nelson’s Kalamazoo midcentury time capsule

Not exactly development-related news, but still an interesting story related to architecture. Kalamazoo has a lot of prominent examples of mid-century architecture, including an atypically large amount of Frank Lloyd Wright designed homes. However, I did not know about the George Nelson-designed Kirkpatrick House until I saw this article. At one time, George Nelson was the Director of Design for the Herman Miller furniture company. His studio had a heavy influence on furniture design during the 20th century.

Quote:
Jack White bought George Nelson’s Kalamazoo midcentury time capsule
By Lauren Ro, Curbed
via Realtor, The New Yorker
March 17, 2017

When this incredibly restored home by George Nelson first came on the market in Kalamazoo, Michigan last summer, we were awed by its beauty and more than a little envious about its eventual owner—especially since the home was offered at a screaming deal of $450,000.

Now we’ve come to learn that the lucky owner of the 1958-built house is none other than Jack White, rock musician extraordinaire, formerly of the White Stripes, and a native of Detroit...









Images Source: Curbed
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Last edited by deja vu; Jul 25, 2020 at 6:54 PM. Reason: fixed photo links
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Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 7:13 PM
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Kalamazoo Gazette Building - Demolition Progress Update

On a work break this morning, I walked around the site of the ongoing demolition of the former Kalamazoo Gazette building. Lots of activity, and demolition has progressed to the final portion of building to be removed. Ironically, this final area that is being demolished is actually the newest addition to the complex, having opened in 2004. The original building was designed by Albert Kahn and completed in 1925, with two other additions built in 1941 and 1968. Only the 1925 and 1941 portions will remain to be repurposed by Bronson Healthcare Group, as its downtown footprint expands.

All photos below are my own.

View from S. Burdick St:


View from John St:


View from John St:


That tower is not long for this world:


View from NE Corner of E Lovell St. and Henrietta St:


Close-up of Upper Ceiling:


Close-up of tower:


View from NW Corner of E Lovell St. and Henrietta St:
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Last edited by deja vu; Jul 25, 2020 at 6:46 PM. Reason: fixed photo links
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Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 7:27 PM
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Kalamazoo Gazette Building - Clock Demolition Photos

Related to the previous post, I found some neat photos which show the process of removing the large clocks that were previously attached to the tower. Photo credit goes to Carly Geraci, at MLive. You can view more of photos, and read the accompanying article, here.



















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Last edited by deja vu; Jul 25, 2020 at 6:48 PM. Reason: fixed photo links
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Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 9:21 PM
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WMU East Campus pulled from National Register of Historic Places

WMU East Campus pulled from National Register of Historic Places

An interesting article was just released regarding the recent demolition (decimation?) that took place on Prospect Hill, the home of the original campus of Western Michigan University. Originally known as the Western State Normal School. In 2013 - 2014, three historic buildings were demolished (North Hall, West Hall, and the Speech & Hearing Building) and another was greatly altered (East Hall) to prepare for the creation of a new Alumni Center, which opened in 2015 in the remains of East Hall, and which is now referred to as Heritage Hall.

Quote:
WMU East Campus pulled from National Register of Historic Places
By Malachi Barrett, via MLive
March 22, 2017

KALAMAZOO, MI -- What was once called the "Acropolis of Kalamazoo" is no longer deemed worthy of historic recognition after renovations to Western Michigan University's East Campus. East Hall, added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978, and Western State Normal School Historic District, added in 1990, were stripped of their historic status by the National Park Service, effective March 7.

....
The project was controversial when it happened, and now, the NPS has revoked National Register status for the University's East Campus. This marks the first time ever in the history of the State Historic Preservation Review Board that a physical site visit was conducted by SHPRB to determine whether or not a listed property / area should remain listed after alterations were made. It seems like a blow, but the University's reaction to the news seemed rather nonchalant.

Images below are courtesy of WMU Archives and Regional History Collection, via MLive, unless noted otherwise. The article follows after the images.

East Hall, shortly after it opened in 1905:


East Hall, after the north and south wings were added, in 1908 and 1909:


The WMU Inclined Trolley, to access Prospect Hill from below (I had no idea until now that Kalamazoo had its own incline of sorts, at one time):


Two aerial views of Prospect Hill, showing the early WMU campus:




A similar aerial view from the recent past, when demolition was complete. The partially-demolished East Hall stands alone in the middle of the cleared area:

Image Source: Google Maps

WMU West Hall Demolition, June 2013:

Image Source: Mark Bugnaski / Kalamazoo Gazette, file

WMU Speech and Hearing Building Demolition, July 2013:

Image Source: Mark Bugnaski / Kalamazoo Gazette, file

WMU East Hall Demolition of South Wing, July 2014:



Image Source: Mark Bugnaski / Kalamazoo Gazette, file

Protester's graffiti at the construction site, in September 2014:

Image Source: Mark Bugnaski / Kalamazoo Gazette, file

Heritage Hall Alumni Center / Former East Hall as it looks today:

Image Source: Tower Pinkster

Read the Full Article, and see some pretty great historic photos, here.
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Last edited by deja vu; Jul 25, 2020 at 7:11 PM. Reason: fixed photo links
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Old Posted Mar 24, 2017, 12:08 AM
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Why on earth would they do that?!

Fucking idiots, WMU can go to hell.
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Old Posted Mar 24, 2017, 3:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The North One View Post
Why on earth would they do that?!

Fucking idiots, WMU can go to hell.
Someone usually makes the argument that money is a factor - too expensive to maintain, too expensive to repurpose... Or that a structure can't be brought into communion with the expressed future goals of an organization. Those reasons usually sound like half-truths, excuses to explain away the most obvious of conclusions that good buildings and good spaces should be celebrated and preserved whenever possible.

It's fortunate that Kalamazoo has an active historic commission, and from what I know, a pretty good track record at repurposing and preserving historic structures. It's just too bad that this one got away. The original campus really projected the 'city on a hill' aesthetic that so many universities embodied. That cohesive massing of buildings around a central quad is now mainly a parking lot. At least one small part of it remains.
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Old Posted Mar 25, 2017, 4:47 AM
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$2M PlazaCorp redevelopment to create 30 jobs in downtown Kalamazoo

$2M PlazaCorp redevelopment to create 30 jobs in downtown Kalamazoo
By Malachi Barrett, via MLive
March 23, 2017

Quote:
KALAMAZOO, MI -- An affiliate of PlazaCorp intends to invest $2 million to redevelop a contaminated manufacturing site in downtown Kalamazoo.

PS 383 LLC bought two parcels at 381 and 383 South Pitcher Street in January 2016. According to county documents, it plans to clean up contaminates at the brownfield site then renovate an existing building to lease to an unnamed automotive performance shop and create office space for up to four tenants.

...
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Last edited by deja vu; Jun 9, 2017 at 11:32 PM.
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Old Posted Mar 25, 2017, 3:26 PM
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Kalamazoo County Population Data for 2016

According to the recently released US Census Data for county-wide population changes between 2010 and 2016, Kalamazoo County faired well. The population increased from 250,331 in 2010 to 261,654 in 2016 - a gain of about 11,323 persons, or about 4.3% growth since 2010. This puts Kalamazoo in with the 35 of 83 Michigan counties that are going against the statewide trend of population decline. It's great news for the area, and a strong indicator of the healthy economy in southwest Michigan.


Image Source: MLive

Another interesting thing that I observed, looking at the above graph portrayal of population change since 1900, Kalamazoo County has not once experienced a decline in population at the county level, for each decade when Census data was recorded. To put it another way, the growth in the county has trended positively for at least the past 116 years of US census data recording. At a glance, I count only four other counties in the entire State that can make this claim.
  • Kent County - home of Grand Rapids (current peak population 642,173)
  • Muskegon County - Home of Muskegon (current peak population 173,408)
  • Oakland County - Detroit Metro area (current peak population 1,243,970)
  • Ottawa County - home of Holland & Grand Haven (current peak population 282,250)
This might not mean much, taken over the course of 100+ years of data, but I find it very interesting that four of the five counties that have never had a population decline when measured by the decade since 1900 are located in western / southwestern Michigan. Oakland County is the only exception.

You can see the charts and data for each county at this MLive article:

How every Michigan county's population has changed over the past 100 years
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Last edited by deja vu; May 25, 2017 at 9:45 PM.
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Old Posted Mar 26, 2017, 2:07 PM
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New assistant city manager to focus on Kalamazoo Foundation for Excellence

It's not every day that the City of Kalamazoo creates a new administrative position in the planning department.


Quote:
New assistant city manager to focus on Kalamazoo Foundation for Excellence
By Malachi Barrett, via Mlive
March 21, 2017

KALAMAZOO, MI --  City Manager Jim Ritsema announced meetings focused on Kalamazoo's use of $10 million in donations from local philanthropists, and a new administrative position dedicated to the Foundation for Excellence. 

Commissioners will meet at a 6 p.m. work session on March 27 to discuss ending generational poverty and increasing youth development opportunities with $10 million earmarked for "aspirational projects." Ritsema also announced a meeting at 6 p.m. on April 10 focused on the Foundation for Excellence, which includes a permanent endowment fund the city seeks to use to sustain an initial $70.3 million donation after three years. The April meeting will also discuss projects and programs identified through the Imagine Kalamazoo 2025 master planning process.

...


Image Source: MLive
You can link to the full article here.
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Last edited by deja vu; Jun 9, 2017 at 11:33 PM.
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Old Posted Mar 27, 2017, 1:18 PM
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Oberon Day 2017!

Happy Oberon Day!

For those who don't know, today is basically an official holiday in Kalamazoo, marking the release of the 2017 batch of Bell's most popular craft beer - Oberon (as well as the less-official start of spring around here). Tapping parties began at midnight around the city, state, and even other parts of the country / globe. The tapping at Bell's Eccentric Café, the center of the Bell's universe, was a few minutes ago, at 9:00AM, EST (which is where many of my less responsible but certainly happier coworkers are right now).

If you're wondering how this is at all development related, Bell's has invested tens of millions of dollars into both its downtown location and its main brewing facilities in nearby Comstock in recent years, and has basically had everything to do with catalyzing the craft beer movement in this region.

To compliment your Oberon, you can always stop by Sweetwater's Donut Mill, open 24/7, and grab an Oberon-Inspired donut. They frankly look gross to me, but I've never tried one, so I shouldn't judge.


Source: MLive


Image: Oberon Donuts, at Sweetwaters Donut Mill
Source: John Gonzalez, via Twitter
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Last edited by deja vu; Mar 4, 2021 at 4:39 PM.
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