Development plans for vacant lot in Eastown

Renderings of the plans for a mixed-use building at the corner of Wealthy and Fuller in Eastown. (Courtesy Integrated Architecture/Nov. 3, 2016)
Renderings of the plans for a mixed-use building at the corner of Wealthy and Fuller in Eastown. (Courtesy Integrated Architecture/Nov. 3, 2016)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Plans are in the works to redevelop a vacant lot into a mixed-use building at the corner of Wealthy and Fuller in Eastown.

“What you see is a vacant lot that’s been vacant for many, many years and been a blight here in the neighborhood,” said Steve Bratschie, the owner of the property.

The developer met with the Historic Preservation Commission Wednesday night to informally talk to them about the project and get some feedback.

The developer wants to build a four-story apartment building that would have retail on the ground floor and 23 apartments on the upper floors. There would be a variety of studio, one and two-bedroom apartments.

Renderings of the plans for a mixed-use building at the corner of Wealthy and Fuller in Eastown. (Courtesy Integrated Architecture/Nov. 3, 2016)
Renderings of the plans for a mixed-use building at the corner of Wealthy and Fuller in Eastown. (Courtesy Integrated Architecture/Nov. 3, 2016)

“Less than a block to the west is a new development which is four stories going in. The apartments just to the east of here four-story as well, Eastown Flats. So no it’s not going to be something that is unusual for the area, and what is happening in the area,” Bratschie said.

The developer is hoping to price the apartments lower than market value so more people can afford to live there.

“I think it’s going to be a great project for this community and it will be an anchor building for years to come. Right here on a block that needs to be improved,” said Bratschie.

The developer will have to eventually get approval from the Historic Preservation Commission before moving forward.

Bratschie has also met with neighborhood associations in that area for feedback.

“With the Baxter Neighborhood Association — they seem to be quite supportive of it. They didn’t have specific problems or issues with it. The concerns expressed were ones of general gentrification issues that happen. That’s why we’re cognizant of that and trying to keep the size of the apartments where we can price them accordingly,” Bratschie said.

Renderings of the plans for a mixed-use building at the corner of Wealthy and Fuller in Eastown. (Courtesy Integrated Architecture/Nov. 3, 2016)
Renderings of the plans for a mixed-use building at the corner of Wealthy and Fuller in Eastown. (Courtesy Integrated Architecture/Nov. 3, 2016)