Douglas J. Construction has not started, businesses wait

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The outside view of White Bros. Music sign from their old location which is now vacant

White Bros. Music has moved across the street, but their original location still stands, vacant

By Patrick Mullen
Meridian Times staff writer

When Douglas J bought out much of the property in downtown Okemos at the end of 2012, they planned on starting new spa renovations immediately.

Months later, nothing has been done at the corner of Okemos and Jolly Roads, and businesses surrounding the location are not happy.

Business owner of White Bros. Music, William White, lost his property to Douglas J a few months ago.

“Business is going down,” White said. “We probably lost $20,000 or $30,000 over Christmas time.”

This occurred due to the location change of White Bros. Music in November, and customers do not realize it moved across the street.

That is because the new location is still labeled on the outside as “CC Greenery,” a flower shop which closed last year.

According to Ben Sawyer, an employee at the guitar shop, White Bros. cannot get its sign from their original store.

“We did not own the property, we were just renting it from the bank,” Sawyer said.

To get the sign back, Sawyer says White Bros. Music must pay a fee to Meridian Township, which would be thousands of dollars.

“We have a sign ordinance that varies what size the sign can be,” Brixie said. “The sign on the original building is too big for their new property,” and thus cannot be purchased anyway.

“She did not check out Douglas J financially (ahead of time)”, White said. This stalemate situation was caused by a “lack of foresight long term and poor planning.”

It appears that White Bros. Music has some hard feelings toward Brixie, and there is a reason why.

“The facts are they lost their property due to mortgage foreclosure,” Brixie said.

Both sides continue to butt heads in relation to downtown Okemos, but no progress is being made for White’s sign. And as far is Brixie is concerned, the ball is in Mr. White’s court.

“He does not have to pay us to get the signing,” she said. It just has to meet Meridian Township regulations.

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