A pair of Lansing Township Police cars sit in the parking lot of the Lansing Township Police Department on Michigan Ave. First responders in Lansing Township can be dispatched to emergencies in surrounding jurisdictions outside the township. Photo by Casey Harrison.

Lansing Township first responders, among others in Lansing area, respond to calls outside jurisdiction

Like the other first responders in the greater-Lansing area, Lansing Township Police Officer Matt Birr’s daily routine is different from others in his field of work. The 10-year veteran can spend his 12-hour shift doing a number of things; from patrolling the morning traffic at Waverly East Intermediate School and other surrounding areas in the township, or handling penny thefts and other reports of mischievous behavior to intervening with calls about domestic abuse. “The days tend to go by pretty fast,” Birr said. And due to the fragmentation of Lansing Township, many of the station’s calls from the dispatch center aren’t actually cases where the Lansing Township Police Department has jurisdiction. The east and west sides of the township sandwich the city of Lansing, and the township is just blocks away from Clinton and Eaton counties.

National Weather Service released graphics identifying the areas under a wind advisory. 
Graphic courtesy of National Weather Service

Lansing Township makes recovery from wind storm

The tumultuous windstorm that swept through Michigan on March 8 left Susan Flores feeling as if it was ‘just a normal day.” But her workplace’s neighbors may beg to differ. “The whole strip with Little Caesars, McDonald’s and all the way down to Taco Bell lost power,” said Flores, who works at the Subway located on the corner of Saginaw Highway and Waverly Road. “Our restaurant was okay and it hasn’t impacted us so far … It was just a normal day.”

At the storm’s peak, there were more than 20,000 outages in the area, according to Board of Water & Light.

The golf course is now used for low impact recreational purposes for the township.
Photo by Madison Job

No signs of re-development for Lansing Township’s Waverly Golf Course

Currently, there are no plans underway showing signs of re-development for the now-empty lot that was once the Waverly Golf Course. Due to a zoning moratorium expiring in Lansing Township, the 120-acre property owned by the City of Lansing closed in 2007. The lot is now a “single-family residential area,” according to Sam Schultz, who is the township planner in Lansing Township. “Currently, it is used as recreation space and it would have to be re-zoned if anything was to be done,” Schultz said. “If zoning was re-done, it could be used for only the options under the township ordinances which involve low resident intensity like churches or public parks and playgrounds.”

Holly Madill who is the outreach specialist for the Michigan State University Land Policy Institute and Planning & Zoning Center provided information on zoning moratoriums from the Michigan State University Extension.

An alternative story format, or ASF, highlighting the pros and cons of Daylight Saving Time. Infographic by: Casey Harrison.

Feeling tired? Your body may be working overtime to rebound from Daylight Saving Time

It’s one of the most loved and hated times of the year — depending on how you feel about Daylight Saving Time. When it comes to springing forward, the good thing is the days become longer, you conserve a small amount of electricity, and in all likelihood, you’re outside more than in the winter. The cons, however, include losing that coveted extra hour of sleep, and multiple health risk factors, like increased stress levels, car crash rates, and an increase in heart attacks and strokes. Whether you’re in Lansing Township, Michigan or Anchorage, Alaska, the effects of daylight saving can be both a blessing and a curse.

Neighbor John Elias recalls the fence lining Elizabeth Park clear of any entanglement from trees or brush creating a clear view of the park
Photo by Madison Job

Lansing Township working to keep parks in order

John Elias, who lives across the street from Elizabeth Park in Lansing Township, recalls his neighbor, Cheryl Basey, putting her ambitions into action. Basey had a family to worry about. Before passing away, Elias recalls her being the driving force behind creating Elizabeth Park, and arranging for the upkeep of it afterwards. “Most people in this area rent houses and have kids. Cheryl’s house was right next to this empty lot and on top of that she couldn’t see her kids when they were playing outside,” Elias said.

The west side, southeast side and east side sections of Lansing Township. Source: Hannah Holliday via: Google Maps.

Where am I? Not everyone is sure in geographically-fractured Lansing Township

Haslett resident Kate Daniels frequently makes a 15-minute trip roughly three times a month to The Eastwood Towne Center for upscale shopping and the outdoor mall atmosphere. But, not even an endless amount of hours spent at the shopping center could prepare Daniels for this geography question. When asked where the shopping mall was located, Daniels replied with, “I guess maybe it is considered to be in Lansing.”

Unbeknownst to some visitors, store employees and even residents from neighboring townships, Daniels is not alone with being confused about where Eastwood is located. Technically, the lifestyle center is located within the boundaries of Lansing Township, according to the Charter Township of Lansing’s website, and not the City of Lansing. “I have never thought about it actually,” Daniels said.

United Auto Workers Local 602 headquarters located off the 2500 block of Michigan Ave. in Lansing Township, Mich. Photo by Casey Harrison

Local UAW branch continues history of community outreach

When 43-year-old Bobbie Ledesma was diagnosed with breast cancer, she had no idea who was going to take care of her or her son. Ledesma, a native of Saginaw, was with General Motors for almost five years when she moved to Lansing. She was transferred to the GM Lansing Delta Assembly plant and had no family in the area. Ledesma joined the United Auto Workers, or UAW, Local 602 — located in Lansing Township — and became involved with the branch’s Women’s Committee. It was Ledesma’s fellow union members that helped her beat her cancer.

Located on the corner of Lake Lansing Road and Preyde Boulevard sits the 332,751 square foot Eastwood Towne Center (Photo/ Madison Job)

Eastwood Towne Center becoming the “center of attention” for mid-Michigan retail

Opened in 2002, Eastwood Towne Center has brought new forms of work and leisure to the residents of Lansing Township. Emily Desrochers, who is the general manager for Eastwood, said that the outdoor shopping center truly is the “center of attention.”

“With a unique lineup already including Forever 21, Sephora, Apple and NCG Cinemas, we continue to look for ways to add as many attractive retailers to support our project and the Lansing community,” Desrochers said. “Supported by our strong lineup of shops, services restaurants and entertainment, Eastwood Towne Center’s target audience is women between the ages 18 to 55.”

In order to maintain community outreach the variety of stores and brands target their own market with social media. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram provide the opportunity to deliver the tenants their own tailored communication that reach their entire social community. Aimed at “younger knowledge workers” employee at Victoria’s Secret Rachel Niceveski said she normally sees women in their 30s and 40s who are shopping for their nieces or daughters for a gift or birthday present.

CMU students travel to Eastwood Towne Center to get what they can’t find in Mount Pleasant

Located less than five miles away from Michigan State University, Eastwood Towne Center attracts more shoppers than just Spartans and Lansing natives. Haley Garr, a sophomore at Central Michigan University, said that Eastwood is one of two large-scale shopping centers including Midland Mall that CMU students routinely travel to on the weekends. “The shopping scene in Mount Pleasant is very minimal, we don’t really have any stores and the ones that we do have are all pretty similar,” Garr said. “Mount Pleasant has large scale stores like Meijer, Walmart and Target, but its a lot of the same things everywhere.” According to Garr, CMU students are willing to travel about 60 miles to shop at Eastwood’s trendier clothing stores like Forever 21, American Eagle and Victoria’s Secret.