More car dealerships, a marketplace and a Drive-In movie theater are coming soon to Meridian Township, according to the Downtown Development Authority.
Will Randle, chief operating officer for the True North Development, said development in Meridian Township led to new environmental discoveries and concerns.
“Environmentally we had some issues with contamination from an old dry cleaner and that has been addressed already,” said Randle. “We are also addressing some petroleum gasoline contamination that is a result of two old gas stations that were in the area that are no longer there. So those environmental cleanups will be part of the development itself. ”
With new renovations throughout Meridian Township, city officials such as Patricia Herring Jackson, a member of the Board of Trustees, has been cautious of the environmental footprint construction is leaving.
Herring Jackson said: “Meridian Township has a long history of an environmentally responsible focus. Sensitivity in development even to the extent that we have a land preservation program. … Environmentally sensitive natural area and undeveloped areas.”
New developments are diverse
The developments that range from housing to eateries will help bring people to Okemos, said Chris Buck, economic development director.
“The housing that they are going to build is going to attract young professionals and empty-nesters, and you are going to get both ends of the spectrum,” said Buck. “This area is just going to be a community gathering space you can either live there or can visit there.”
City officials are hoping to create a downtown Okemos with its “Village of Okemos” development, built between Ardmore Avenue and Okemos Road, reported the Lansing State Journal.
Frank Walsh, township manager, said the DDA is working on different housing developments for residents of all ages.
Walsh said: “There’s a lot of developments going on in the township that are aimed at attracting all sorts of people. We have a 55-and-over development proposed in Haslett, we have student housing off of Hagadorn, of course we have 50 or 70 wonderful subdivisions in the township. So we attract all types.”
Buck also said when it comes to the Village of Okemos, one city Okemos hopes to mirror is the city of Birmingham, Michigan.
“[Birmingham, Mi] which is obviously pretty cool, but it’s really big, and it’s 20 years ahead of us,” said Buck. “This is step one. But the little area that we are going to develop is going to look like Birmingham but on a smaller scale. And hopefully, other developers will build around it, and we will end up with a really cool space like Birmingham.”