West Side development plans revealed


Rockford Construction and the Inner City Christian Federation have teamed up for a proposed mixed-used development with 70 affordable housing units on Grand Rapids' Westside, near where Rockford and Meijer recently announced a proposed store. Photo via Google

A Grand Rapids construction company and nonprofit partner have announced the full details of a proposed development on Grand Rapids’ West Side.

Rockford Construction and the Inner City Christian Federation will build a mixed-use building on First Street and Stocking Avenue NW, pending approval.

The project will include 70 affordable apartments, with ICCF working with the city of Grand Rapids to apply for Low Income Housing Tax Credits.

The developers will seek additional partners and funding incentives in the future.

The decision to build affordable housing is based on feedback from residents and community leaders, Ryan VerWys, ICCF CEO and president, said in a release.

“The LIHTC process is very competitive,” VerWys said. “But we are excited to work alongside Rockford and the neighborhood to increase the availability of affordable housing for neighbors on the West Side.”

Brad Mathis, Rockford’s community development director, and Ryan Schmidt, ICCF’s vice president of real estate development and management, will lead the community engagement opportunities and seek feedback and approval of a zoning change required for the project.

ICCF and Rockford also will work with West Side neighborhood organizations to help reach out to residents.

Rockford and Meijer recently announced a planned grocery store on the northwest corner of Bridge Street and Seward Avenue, near the site of the mixed-use development.

“Our goal is to honor the work of the West Side Area Specific Plan through smart design, authentic architecture and strong support of transportation,” Rockford CEO Mike VanGessel said. “We want residents and visitors alike to experience the West Side as a place to live, work and gather in ways that are special and unique to the existing character of our neighborhood.”

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