Design + Industry


Mercantile Bank grants $1M in Neighborhood Impact Program funds

Mercantile Bank has provided $1 million in Neighborhood Impact Program (NIP) grants to city of Grand Rapids residents for home maintenance and repairs.

Urbaneer launches compact housing model for Michigan

Urbaneer is bringing its Tioga Series home to Michigan to meet the needs of a growing number of property owners looking for compact housing solutions.

Custer opens new showroom in downtown Kalamazoo

Custer held a grand opening for its new showroom and meeting space on the 15th floor of the new Exchange Building in downtown Kalamazoo.

Volunteers to build new playground at Mel Trotter

Volunteers from a trio of local organizations will gather to build a state-of-the-art playground in just six hours at Mel Trotter next week.

Blackford Capital, Boston Trade acquire Design Environments

A local private equity firm has partnered with a large interior solutions company to acquire an interior design and architecture firm. 

F&V co-founder dies

Fleis & VandenBrink (F&V) announced the passing of co-founder Steven R. Vanden Brink at the age of 66. The Grand Rapids professional engineer started F&V with longtime friend and business partner Larry Fleis on Jan. 13, 1993.

Faith Hospice continues virtual bereavement services

Faith Hospice is continuing to use a virtual platform to provide bereavement services to families who are grieving the loss of a loved one after the pandemic forced its support groups to meet families where they were, both physically and emotionally.

Tech firm puts remote workers on better networks

As COVID-19-related shutdowns force businesses to pivot toward remote work, the kind of network they are running on becomes a critical — but often overlooked — component of the switch.

Garage Bar & Grill plans second location in Ada

The owners of a longtime Monroe North restaurant and bar are planning to add a location in Ada this fall.

Ronald McDonald House announces facility upgrades

A nonprofit is nearing the end of a 17-room renovation at its local facility to better support families traveling to Grand Rapids for their children’s medical or mental health treatment.

Beauty in the eye of the beer-holder

City Built Brewing Co. came out like a lion in March when USA Today published its 10Best Readers Choice Awards for 2021.

Teen rebrands, expands apparel company

Eion Jackson is one of those rare high school seniors who knows exactly what he’s going to do with his life, and he’s already making it happen.

Fencing company announces first Midwest franchise in Grand Rapids

Superior Fence & Rail welcomed Phillip Haan and Kyle Brinks as the owners of its first Midwest franchise.

Blackford Capital portfolio company merges to create new entity

A provider of interior design, procurement and project management services for the hospitality industry is merging with a similar company to create a new entity under the Blackford Capital umbrella.

Custer marks 40 years in business

Not every business can stay family owned as the years fly by, but Custer has continued to grow and flourish in its second generation of leadership.

Founder grows U-Plant Landscape Designs

Sandy Jonick started U-Plant Landscape Designs after hearing from homeowners who would be happy to dig a hole and plant their own flowers and shrubs if someone could just provide a blueprint.

Jeweler turns bad year into fuel for her fire

Although Lisa Lehmann’s life in the past year reads like the lyrics of a country song, she’s using the pain to forge a stronger business.

Deal reached on project to protect lakes from invasive fish

TRAVERSE CITY — Michigan, Illinois and a federal agency agreed on funding the next phase of an initiative to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes by strengthening defenses on a Chicago-area waterway, officials said Thursday.

Ten-member design team closes out 2020 with $1M in revenue

Well Design Studio has seen unprecedented growth in 2020.

Camping resort offers primitive living

Just off of U.S. 131, away from the din of rubber on concrete, a group of local developers are taking steps to transform a 45-acre property in Rockford into an off-the-grid camping experience where visitors can unplug from technology and reconnect with the outdoors.

Company introduces ‘mobile’ Wi-Fi for students

A Grand Rapids company is offering school districts the option of providing Wi-Fi to their students in the unlikeliest of places.

Grand Rapids design pro joins Value City Furniture

Value City Furniture announced interior design guru, online content creator and author Farah Merhi will serve as its first designer looks style expert.

Hospitals get creative amid COVID-19

Experts in the field of health care, as well as those in the design and construction of hospital systems, have been talking for many years about maximizing existing care space and expanding outpatient facilities and telehealth options, but COVID-19 exposed many flaws in hospital systems and brought these issues to the forefront of hospital innovation.

Well Design Studio outgrows Fulton location in just months

Community-focused design firm Well Design Studio continues to push itself.

Companies enroll in WELL certification for COVID-19 prep

Catalyst Partners recently enrolled its office building in the WELL Health-Safety Rating for Facilities Operations and Management.