Development News

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Wolverine State Brewing Co expands, doubles barrel production

Wolverine State Brewing Co. is going big this year. The Ann Arbor-based craft brewery is in the midst of wrapping up an expansion project that includes an expanded kitchen space, additional brewing space, and a larger cooler.

Tattoo boutique, clothing store to open in downtown Ypsilanti

A new boutique is scheduled to open in downtown Ypsilanti next month, and it promises to be a bit more than the average retail operation. Vivid Inks will offer intricate, high-end tattoos and piercing services along with clothing, jewelry and other art.

Mild winter speeds Kingsley West construction in downtown Ann Arbor

Warmer-than-usual temps are making life easier for construction projects this winter, including the folks behind one of downtown Ann Arbor's newest condo developments: 121 Kingsley West.

LLamasoft moves into Google space shows best value comes from local firms

LLamasoft, an Ann Arbor-based supply chain software firm, is taking up the lions share of prime downtown office space Google is leaving behind, as the tech giant builds its own campus on the city's outskirts.

My Urban Hen brings hobby farming to Ann Arbor area locals

Ever want to own a chicken but don't know where to start? Or don't have the time to build a coop? Perhaps you live in a city and don't know whether owning a hen to lay fresh eggs every day is allowed? A new Chelsea-based company believes it can provide the answers to these chicken questions and more

Goodwill Industries opens new store, donation center in Ypsilanti

Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit is opening its sixth store in Metro Detroit on Ypsilanti's Carpenter Road near Ellis Road. The new facility will offer options for both donations and retail with the idea of serving Washtenaw County residents.

University of Michigan Credit Union opens new branch in Ann Arbor

The University of Michigan Credit Union has opened a new, stand-alone branch on the south side of Ann Arbor. Maybe you've seen it? It's near Briarwood Mall and has a big, blue roof and large windows.

U-M alumni put mustard on nostalgia with new Pretzel Bell restaurant

Three University of Michigan alumni are resurrecting the storied Pretzel Bell in the soon-to-be old Lena space at the corner of Main and Liberty streets. The trio want to bring back their memories of what the restaurant was like when they graduated from U-M in the 1950s-60s-70s.

Pointless Brewery & Theatre opens in Ann Arbor

The Pointless Brewery & Theatre opened on the east side of Ann Arbor a few weeks ago, but the craft brewery and improv stage is anything but pointless.

Tori and Jason Tomalia started working on the project a little more than a year ago in response to Tori’s diagnosis of stage 4 lung cancer. The young couple were able to fight off the cancer so that is now under control. Their next move, open the theater and brewery they always talked about building.

Upland Green wraps up construction on Ann Arbor's north side

The Great Recession stalled a lot of local projects and now the last of them is on course to be completed. Upland Green at 1771 Plymouth Road will soon be welcoming residents to its newly finished apartments.

 

Fraser Bicycle opens new store in Ann Arbor

What was once old is new again when it comes to bicycle sales in Ann Arbor now that Fraser Bicycle is opening a store in Tree Town. ?The Fraser-based bicycle retailer took over the old Two Wheel Tango space at 3162 Packard earlier this year and turned it into its newest store, employing six people.

Renewable Roundup: Ann Arbor builds wind exhibit, solar facility proposed for Ypsilanti

More alternative energy projects are coming to Washtenaw County next year, and they range from job creation to education. The Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum is leveraging federal dollars to create a traveling wind energy exhibit that will crisscross Washtenaw County for the next year or two. Ypsilanti Township officials are also reviewing plans for a solar production facility.

East Main Redevelopment nears finish line in downtown Milan

Downtown Milan is about to get a big boost in the new year as the first lofts from the East Main Redevelopment project begin to come online. "We're pretty well along," says Dave Snyder, developer of East Main Redevelopment. "We have been at it for six months. We're about a month from the first apartment being ready."

Ann Arbor Distilling Co opens doors in downtown Ann Arbor

Patrons began walking into the newly opened Ann Arbor Distilling Co's tasting room in downtown Ann Arbor a few days ago and Rob Cleveland hopes they notice one thing, the combination of industrial and rural aesthetics. "We're industrial meets farm," says Cleveland, managing director of the micro distillery. 

Campus Inn matriculates to Graduate Hotel with big renovation project

The Campus Inn in downtown Ann Arbor has begun its transition to become the newest member of the Graduate Hotel chain, with a extensive renovation project that starts this week.

"The hotel just checked out its last guest (on Monday)," says Ben Gottlieb, vice president of acquisition for AJ Capital Partners, which owns the Graduate Hotels chain. "We are in the process of taking out some of the old furniture fixtures."

The Chicago-based investment group bought the 45-year-old hotel in September with the intention of adding it to its Graduate Hotels chain. The 14-story building at the corner of State and Huron comes with 204 hotel rooms and several thousand square feet of flexible space for meetings, events and normal hotel guest amenities.

Graduate Hotels plans to keep the structure of the building and the number of hotel rooms the same with its renovation. However, it does plan to modernize the hotel in functionality and design while also making it a more open part of the community.

"We are working on something really special," Gottlieb says. "It will really activate the space."

The new hotel will feature a more open layout to both patrons and passersby. The idea is to make it more inviting for both hotel guests and neighbors can enjoy its ground floor amenities.

"We like to say our lobbies are an extension of ourselves," Gottlieb says. "We like it to be a living room for our communities."

The renovation project is expected to take 4.5 months and be open in time for spring commencement at the nearby University of Michigan. The newly redone hotel will also feature a locally-centric food and beverage program designed to foster interaction between hotel guests, Ann Arborites, and the University community.

Source: Ben Gottlieb, vice president of acquisition for AJ Capital Partners
Writer: Jon Zemke
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