The city of Wyoming earned a designation from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation that will help pave the way for additional development and investment in the city.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) said last week that it granted Wyoming certification as a Redevelopment Ready Community (RRC) for its efforts in establishing a solid foundation to attract private investment and further build on municipality assets.
Wyoming joins more than 50 Michigan communities that have qualified as “thoroughly prepared” when it comes to planning and zoning to remove traditional barriers and promote opportunities for prospective investors.
“Certification as a Redevelopment Ready Community shows our commitment to development readiness,” Wyoming Mayor Jack Poll said. “We went through a rigorous assessment and worked to implement the program’s best practices. We look forward to our continued partnership with the MEDC to spur economic development, investment and job growth in our great city.”
Added Wyoming City Manager Curtis Holt: “Receiving the Redevelopment Ready Community certification from the MEDC exemplifies our continued efforts to make development processes predictable, efficient and community-driven. We look forward to collaborating with the MEDC on development strategies that support our partnership with existing Wyoming businesses and prospective employers who are looking to invest in Wyoming.”
Michele Wildman, senior vice president at the MEDC, said the certification fits with the agency’s mission “to support Michigan’s strong economic momentum and empower communities to establish a strong planning, zoning and economic development foundation.”
“The city of Wyoming is well-positioned to continue to implement (its) vision for the future and further improve the quality of life for its residents,” Wildman said. “We look forward to building upon our relationship with the city and supporting local economic development efforts.”
Wyoming’s RCC certification qualifies it for state community development incentives that encourage developers to invest in the city. This includes small business programs such as Match on Main, which provides reimbursable grant funds for new or expanding place-based businesses.
Certification also means Wyoming will receive support from the MEDC’s redevelopment services team. The city will partner with the team to evaluate development sites and produce customized marketing that will promote investment in key areas. These likely will include some of the five special area plans identified in the Wyoming [re]Imagined master plan document: sections of 28th Street Southwest, Wilson Avenue SW, Burton Street SW, Division Avenue SW and the Kelvinator industrial site near Clyde Park Avenue SW and Grandville Avenue SW.
After the Wyoming City Council voted in March 2017 to participate in the RRC program, the city received a baseline evaluation of the existing planning and economic development processes compared to RRC best practices. These best practices included plans and engagement, zoning, development review, boards and commissions, and economic development and marketing.
The program also evaluated the city’s public participation and marketing efforts to assess its ability to engage the community and attract businesses.
The certification demonstrates Wyoming has streamlined processes and enhanced engagement to attract developers and stimulate investment in the city, the MEDC said.
“One of the goals of our new master plan, Wyoming [re]Imagined, is to retain existing businesses while fostering new growth and investment,” said Nicole Hofert, Wyoming’s director of planning and economic development. “The Redevelopment Ready Community designation enables the city to leverage state economic development tools and other resources that can help us take a positive step toward achieving this goal. It reflects our continued efforts to work closely with developers to facilitate investment in Wyoming and attract talent to our city.”