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:

Happy Friday Everyone:

I hope you have all had a tremendous week. There is a lot going on with GR Forward, so I will keep this week’s email brief.


Today is the start of our Open House! Hopefully you are all aware of that by now, but if not a reminder that the event will run from 4p-8p in the CWD Building at 50 Louis St NW, and thereafter from 3p-7p every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday (see attached flyer). Both the River and Downtown Steering Committees had a chance to preview the Open House yesterday afternoon, and we received good feedback from both groups. I hope you can all stop by at some point.


Below are the groups we met with this week. Again, if anyone has suggestions for meetings that we can attend, please let me know.

  • Grand Rapids Area Engineering Professionals
  • West Michigan Environmental Action Council

Web Numbers

As expected, the start of the Open House and the advertising associated with it resulted in a big week for the website and social media. There were more than 3,500 website views, and all of the social media grew at a faster rate than normal. We look forward to seeing those trends continue as we progress. As always, be sure to share the links below with anyone that might be interested so we can continue to promote GR Forward.

Facebook -

Twitter -

Instagram -

Website Views

Facebook Likes

Instagram Followers

Twitter Followers

12,664 (+3,569)

466 (+44)

129 (+19)

103 (+13)


This article with 10 big ideas that were discussed during the CityLab event in Los Angeles a few weeks back has some great insight into unique approaches to city building from around the world:

I particularly enjoyed the profiles of Los Angeles’ Express Park, and Johannesburg’s Extreme Park Makeover. Overall, I think all the ideas are inspirational and good fodder for conversation as we move into a discussion with our community about what they want to see for the future of Downtown and the River.

As always, if you have any questions please let me know. Otherwise, have a great weekend.