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 May Everyone:

I hope you are enjoying this beautiful afternoon.

As a reminder, we entering the home stretch of the GR Forward process, so much of our efforts now are focused on developing content for the draft plan, which we expect to have produced near the end of this month. While that work progresses, we are continuing to get the word out in the community about GR Forward. This week we gave presentations to Grand Rapids Initiative for Leaders, the Frey Foundation, and Amway. Next week we are looking forward to an event with the Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce’s Inside Grand Rapids program. Again, if anyone has suggestions for additional groups we can meet with please let me know.

Web Numbers

The latest web and social media numbers are below. Be sure to share the links below so that everyone can stay up to date with GR Forward activities.


This case study from the Urban Land Institute on the 21c Museum Hotel in Cincinnati, OH is really interesting.

For those of you not familiar with the 21c Museum Hotels, the first was developed in Louisville, and seven more have been developed since. The concept was developed by Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson, a husband and wife development team who believe that art can drive civic revitalization. Each of the 21c projects is a distinctive blend of community restoration, cultural institution, and social gathering spot. Further, they are frequently examples of successful public private partnerships, and often spur complimentary investments.

In addition, last week Bloomberg came out with a list of the 10 most affordable cities for millennials. Like most lists these days, Grand Rapids was on there, and noted as having some of the most accessible housing stock in the country after accounting for cost of living and student debt. As we think about talent attraction and retention, this is incredibly important, mainly because homeownership is an area that we can be competitive with other cities, and is something as a community we should be highlighting.

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