Rates for some crimes fall in Lansing, but it doesn’t feel that way to all

By Alana Easterling
Listen Up Lansing Staff Reporter

Some things are just not adding up: when it comes to crime, Lansing residents are saying one thing, while data is saying another. Crime rate data for Lansing displays a decrease in some crime rates, but some Lansing residents feel that crimes rates haven’t decreased, but have gotten worse. Lansing crime rate data shows that the crime rates in Lansing have fluctuated since 2002, but they have indeed decreased since then as well. In 2007 there were 14.1 murders for every 100,000 residents, and just six years later in 2013, that rated decreased by half to 7 murders for every 100,000 residents. Though statistics and those behind the scenes say crime has decreased, some Lansing residents feel otherwise.

Coming soon: a new and improved DeWitt

By Shane Jones
Bath-DeWitt Connection Staff Reporter

DEWITT — Buildings in downtown DeWitt have been standing for many years, but the businesses have changed greatly. One building for example was once an old car dealership, now it is a restaurant. What was once a church, will now be a brewery. As time goes on, the city of DeWitt is trying to change from the small city that it is known for into more of a modern city. Each year, the city and township management are constantly trying to help the city grow.

DeWitt has been improving its community thanks to the Master Plan

By Holly Osmer
Bath-DeWitt Connection Staff Reporter

DEWITT — The City of DeWitt, with its local businesses, pleasant parks, and quality schools, has seen a large increase in the amount of residential growth in the past 10 to 15 years, and their economy is expected to continue growing, despite Michigan’s overall slowed pace. According to the “City of DeWitt Master Plan The Big Picture DeWitt 2010 to 2020,” this growth pressure is expected to continue to impact DeWitt, the DeWitt School District and other public services during the life of this Master Plan and beyond. “The Master Plan is a document that depicts how the city would like the land to be used and developed over the course of time covered,” said DeWitt City Administrator Dan Coss. “The Planning Commission and City Council worked on the Master Plan for approximately 12 months and then by State Statute it is reviewed every five years,” said Coss. “The time it takes [to finish a Master Plan] really depends on if there are any amendments to the plan, typically 6-12 months.”

Since its creation, there are several aspects of DeWitt that have been either added or improved.

Creative energy in Old Town is fueling growth for community

By Emily Elconin
Old Town Lansing Times Staff Reporter

From the beginning, the neighborhood of Old Town has been a creative, kooky, and eccentric place that vibrates with a colorful and inviting energy. From the moment you walk down Turner Street, it is evident there is a new chapter being written here in Old Town. There is a story to be shared on every corner. As Old Town continues to grow, so do the people who are helping Old Town come back stronger than ever before. Old Town is in the process of planning exciting summer festivals and a new event called Arts Night Out, where four neighborhoods in Lansing including Old Town, East Lansing,REO Town, and Downtown Lansing will feature all different kinds of art to draw in the younger community and help the arts community thrive all over Lansing, beginning in Old Town.

South Lansing undergoes rejuvenation at the hands of community members

By Ella Kovacs
Listen Up Lansing Staff Reporter

The south Lansing neighborhood area is undergoing a “rejuvenation” headed by a team of facilitators and representatives, and backed by community members like Elaine Wombolt. She is the official facilitator and founder of the initiative. As stated on the group’s website, “Our goal is to connect neighbors to each other and to resources so we can improve the quality of life in south Lansing for those who live and work here.”

Wombolt also said that this group helps and brainstorms with other Lansing neighborhoods that have similar issues, such as the eastside neighborhood. Some of these issues include a huge, unregulated number of medical marijuana dispensaries, and unregulated donation bins that are easily taken advantage of as garbage furniture dumps. This group started several years ago, with hopes to promote growth of the South Lansing community and stop crime. “In October 2014, a group of citizens came together and decided we needed to do something for south Lansing because it was deteriorating,” said Wombolt. “I was designated as the facilitator of this group.”

Wombolt talked about how this is a growing and expanding group, explaining that there are no dues, no bylaws, and anyone can attend the meetings.