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    Our mission is to retain and foster employment opportunities by improving our business environment and encouraging sustainable business development. Our economic development effort is aimed at facilitating greater levels of economic prosperity through innovation, collaboration and the linking and leveraging of resources.

    Uptown Business Improvement District Special Assessment Renewal FY2018

    The City Commission will hold a public hearing to consider the necessity of the Uptown Business Improvement District (BID) Special Assessment on March 28, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. in the City Commission Chambers, 300 Monroe Ave NW 9th floor. All aspects of the proposed agreement will be open for discussion at the public hearing.  All interested persons will be given an opportunity to be heard. If you would prefer to send written comments for consideration, please forward them prior to the public hearing to the City’s Economic Development Department, Attention: Kara Wood, Economic Development Director, at the above address.  If you have any questions you may call 616-456-3318.  We will be pleased to answer them.

    For the FY2018 request, the current special assessment district and rate will remain in effect.  The City Commission’s declaration of necessity for the Assessment is required to maintain delivery of enhanced services within the Uptown BID as outlined in the Plan for the next fiscal year.  Below is a link to the Plan:



    What We Do

    See the reported outcomes of projects utilizing tax abatements over the past two years. The City’s return on investment has been 6%. Click here to view the 2016 report.  Archived reports: 2015|2014|2013|2012|2011

    Economic Development has assisted 560 projects over the past 15 years.  See the overview below, or click for the most up-to-date 2017 report.  Archived reports: 2016|2015|2014|2013|2012|2011|2010  
    For a printable version of the chart, click here.
    Created as a collaboration with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Huntington Bank is providing
    funding for a five-year, $5 million Michigan small business lending commitment through a new partnership under the Pure Michigan Micro Lending Initiative. Huntington funds allocated to this Initiative expansion will be lent through the Opportunity Resource Fund, an established Michigan microlender. These funds will complement existing community microlending resources available in West Michigan via Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women (GROW). Application support and business development coaching will be provided statewide through Michigan’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC), and by LINC Community Revitalization in Grand Rapids.
    For more information and for contact information, click this link.

    Open for Business
    Whether you’re a sole proprietor, small business owner, or CEO of a corporation, you’ll find that Grand Rapids is a great place to do business.
    Business opportunities abound for every size and type of company: incubator space for startups, centers for cutting-edge science and technology development, and industrial sites for manufacturing – all in proximity to award-winning colleges, universities and a trained workforce.
    The Grand Rapids Economic Development Office is standing by to help you grow your business or bring your business to Grand Rapids by working alongside you and local and state agencies to get what you need to do business here. For more information, check out The Business Guide for additional resources and be sure to fill out the Open for Business in Grand Rapids Checklist.
    To view the Open for Business brochure, click on the cover image below.
    Click here to view our brochure map of downtown GR. 
                                 Brochure  Spanish Translation