Updates: What To Know About Kalamazoo City Projects
Over the past couple of weeks, the city commission has been BUSY trying to close deals and start projects in multiple neighborhoods in Kalamazoo. As always, they open up their meetings to the public, so they can come and voice their support or concerns to be taken into consideration.
There have been two bigger projects proposed to the city within the last couple of weeks that garnished a ton of traffic in the public meetings and while one project got overwhelming support and is set to be in full swing, the other received a ton of push back and may never get approval.
Start The Stadium
Earlier this week the proposed new stadium/event center that was slated to come to downtown Kalamazoo received an order from Kalamazoo County to halt its process. The county owns the land that is being proposed for this project and wanted to have an emergency meeting to hammer out the logistics before the ground was broken.
The County confirmed its plans to sell the land to the City of Kalamazoo and Catalyst to start the building of the stadium/event center but with a few stipulations. Firstly, if anything were to happen and the center falls through the County has first dibs at buying the land back. The other was a request in the process of signing contracts and building.
They believe the project is moving just a little too fast and needs to be slowed down, mostly for the benefit of Kalamazoo's community members. They don't want to sign any contracts until booth rent for small businesses, black businesses, and other forums are at least 50% off to help save money and bring jobs.
Car Wash Canceled?
On the other side of town near the US 131 highway access was the proposition of another project, except this one, which didn't receive the same acceptance that the arena got, but instead got the exact opposite. Tons of residents and visitors of the Asylum Lake Preserve showed up to the City Commission meeting to share their thoughts.
The President and CEO of Drive and Shine currently own land just North of the Asylum Lake Preserve at the corner of Stadium Drive and Drake Road and has asked the city to change its residential designation on this property to a commercial designation to implement another Drive and Shine location in its space.
Many residents that showed up to protest exclaimed consistent use of the Nature preserve stating lines similar to the one below:
This property beautifies an important gateway to our city. Do we really need more plazas, car washes and chain restaurants there? The only downside to preserving this area is that a few people will make less money
The planning commission voted to have another committee take over the site review but no approvals or denials were made at the meeting on Thursday.