Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. Planning Manager Tim Kelly emails a weekly GR Forward update to the project Steering Committee. Here's this week's communication:

Greetings Downtown Plan Steering Committee and Community Partners:

First, my apologies for the premature announcement of Spring last week. I should have known better. Let’s just hope the forecast for the weekend is accurate. 50 degrees and sunshine will feel like Summer!


Attached you will find the agenda for the first Steering Committee meeting next Thursday, April 3 at 10:30a. If you have any questions or comments on the agenda please let me know. Additionally, note the meeting will take place at Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. office at 29 Pearl Street NW, Suite #1. If you accepted the Outlook invitation that was previously sent, it should have been updated today to show the location. If for some reason you are no longer able to attend the meeting, please notify me as soon as possible.

In addition to the Steering Committee meeting, our consultant team will be conducting a variety of land use surveys and stakeholder interviews next week. Thanks to all of our Downtown leaders that have generously offered their time to participate in the interviews.


For your information this week, attached is a summary of the recent Remaking Cities Congress. Sponsored by the American Institute of Architects and the Remaking Cities Institute at Carnegie Mellon, the annual Congress was held in Pittsburgh and invited 300 urbanists from North America and Europe to discuss the future of post-industrial cities.

This year the Congress was structured into workshops that covered five topic areas:

  • 1)Re-Positioning the City in the Global Economy
  • 2)The Physical city
  • 3)The City as an Innovation Hub
  • 4)Urban Systems and Infrastructure; and
  • 5)Planning and Social Innovations

As shown in the summary, workshop participants took a survey to identify their top priorities within each of the five topic areas. The common themes that emerged were sustainability; wise allocation of resources; equity; and public engagement. I think we can all agree these are also areas of great importance for the future of Downtown Grand Rapids.

As always, let me know if you have any questions.

Have a great weekend,