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City Council approves all mayor's re-appointments
By Dan DuChene
Jun. 16, 2010   ·   3:42 a.m.

Jone Coleman, president of downtown business LookInTheAttic, shares his thoughts with City Council about the discussion and procedure taken to pass mayoral re-appointments, which he was being considered for the Downtown Development Authority.

After much procedure, Ypsilanti City Council approved six mayoral re-appointments to city boards and committees Tuesday, including the two postponed from earlier...read more

Council postpones two reappointments
By Mark Tower
Jun. 4, 2010   ·   4:57 p.m.

Two of Ypsilanti's volunteer board members were not reappointed on schedule Tuesday night, owing to a 4-2 vote by City Council to delay the appointments until...read more

Downtown properties to be rehabilitated
By Mark Tower
Jun. 4, 2010   ·   10:40 a.m.

The three properties located at 120, 122 and 124 West Michigan Avenue in downtown Ypsilanti will soon be rebuilt into commercial and office space and loft apartments, thanks to a planned $1.7 million investment by developers.

Three recently-vacated properties in downtown Ypsilanti, two of them condemned, will soon be renovated owing to recent purchase by a local development company and...read more

Ypsilanti Township authorizes litigation against Liberty Square
By Mark Tower
May. 28, 2010   ·   6:53 p.m.

Many of the homes in the Liberty Square complex on Grove Street in Ypsilanti Township are already boarded and ready for foreclosure sale. All 151 units, some of which are still occupied, will be condemned Tuesday, Ypsilanti Township has resolved.

Residents living in the Liberty Square complex of townhouses will see a sticker appear on their homes Tuesday, when the Ypsilanti Township Building Department places...read more

Ford plant granted tax exemption by township
By Mark Tower
May. 24, 2010   ·   5:44 p.m.

Ford Motor Company's Rawsonville Plan, located at the intersection of Textile and Bridge Roads in Ypsilanti Township, will soon be the new home for production of Ford's Electric Focus batteries, formerly produced in Mexico.

New machines and equipment will soon be wheeled into Ford's Rawsonville Plant in Ypsilanti Township as it begins manufacturing a line of batteries for the new global...read more

Ypsilanti districts miss facade grant submission deadline

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Applications for about $900,000 in improvements for Depot Town, Downtown

By Christine Laughren
Apr. 22, 2009    ·    3:42 p.m.


Façade grant submissions by the Downtown Development Authority and the Depot Town Downtown Development Authority were automatically rejected due to late submissions.

The applications totaling approximately $900,000 worth of improvements to five buildings in Depot Town and one in Downtown were submitted electronically approximately 10 minutes late making them ineligible for review according to Brian Vosburg, Director for both Authorities.

“I will be doing what I am able to do to rectify the situation,” Vosburg said this afternoon. “It was late on a technicality due to the size of the document.”

Fifty-fifty matching funds were offered through a competitive state-wide façade grant through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, with a $100,000 cap on matching funds. Business owners are expected to pay for the the rest of the projects.

The projects on the DTDDA’a list totaled $797,563, requesting a $100,000 match from the state. Projects included repair and replacement of upper-story windows at Sidetrack and Standard printing as well as improvements to landscaping, lighting, signage and windows at the Ypsilanti Food Co-op.

Other projects submitted in Depot Town were tuck-pointing and masonry work and improvements to the old loading dock at the Thompson Block, as well as new awnings and signage at Wild Willy’s, formally known as Cady’s Bar and Grill.

The YDDA application consisted of work to the lofts at 128 and 130 West Michigan Ave., above the What is That gallery of fine art & craft. Vosburg said that application was a $102,000 project, requesting $51,000 in matching funds.

Submissions were due electronically to the MECD at 5:00 p.m. April 3. Vosburg said he received submissions from all applicants for the façade grants April 1 and spent most of the day April 3 “putting the final pieces together.”

Vosburg said he hit send on the email with both applications attached before the 5:00 p.m. deadline. But, due to the size of the email, it took more than 10 minutes for it to process according to Vosburg.

“There is an appeal process as part of (the application),” Vosburg said. “I’m going to be talking to the local MEDC representative to see if it is a formal appeal or if there is something internally they can do.”

The total pot of competitive grant money available through the state is $400,000. Katharine Czarnecki, community assistance team leader for MEDC, said this is the first time the grant has been offered. She said online grant submission is consistent with other types of submissions the state does and the MEDC is pretty strict on deadlines.

“There were a few other communities that also missed the deadline and we were not able to accept their proposal either,” Czarnecki said. “It’s definitely unfortunate.”

Corinne Sikorski, general manager of the Ypsilanti Food Co-op, said she was disappointed the applications were not submitted on time, though she said there is more grant money to apply for from other places.

“I feel like there was a failure,” Sikorski said. “I don’t want to let it just get dropped I think we need to figure out how to get around that deadline and look at other options.”

The DTDDA is scheduled to discuss the MEDC façade grant at its regular meeting Thursday morning at 8 a.m.

Visit the Ypsilanti Citizen for updates.

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