Firm plans to redevelop West Side church


Courtesy Metric Structures

A local developer is re-imagining a historic church building on the city’s West Side.

Grand Rapids-based Metric Structures plans to redevelop the Centro de la Verdad church, at 739 4th St. NW.

“We chose that building because it’s a great location, and it has a very interesting historical structure,” said Jacey Ehmann, owner, Metric Structures. “It’s not in a historic district, but it’s very architecturally appealing.”

739 4th St., LLC, and affiliate of Metric Structures, purchased the building in December 2018 for $350,000, according to city property records.

Ehmann plans to restore the original façade and the windows that have been blocked off in order to return the building to more of its original character.

The entire church covers 6,700-square-feet. About 1,000 square feet will be converted into first-floor office space for Metric Structures’ own use.

The rest of the building will be converted into 23 one- and two-bedroom apartments on the main and second floors, and there will be an 1,800-square-foot addition to the main building.

The building is adjacent to a large surface parking lot, and Ehmann said 12 parking spaces will be reserved for office and residential tenants.

Ehmann said her team has already received special land-use approval from the Grand Rapids Planning Commission. The firm still needs a building permit and is seeking brownfield reimbursement.

Ehmann predicts reconstruction will begin around late spring or early summer and wrap up in about eight months.

Grand Rapids-based Rockford Construction was contracted for pre-construction services, and Integrated Architecture provided services as well.

Financing for the redevelopment was not disclosed.

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