Biz Expansion, Community Projects Get State Aid

LANSING — The Michigan Strategic Fund this week approved state assistance to a business expansion and three community revitalization projects in Michigan that will generate $14.4 million in private investment and create 124 jobs.

The projects approved were as follows:

* Plasan North America Inc. makes equipment to improve the survivability of troops in ground and airborne vehicles, including advanced composite structures and active protection systems. PNA is currently working with the defense industry to develop the next generation of Light Tactical Vehicles (LTV) for the U.S. Army and Marine Corps. The company plans to use a leased building in Walker to support manufacturing of future combat vehicles, adjacent to its sister company Plasan Carbon Composites’ plant. The company plans to invest a total of $12.3 million and hire and train more than 120 employees over the next three years, resulting in an $850,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. Michigan was chosen over competing sites in Vermont, Texas, Georgia and Tennessee. The Right Place has offered support to the project in the form of staff time and resources. For information about careers with Plasan North America, visit: http://www.plasan-na.com/

* 207 East Baltimore LLC plans to convert a vacant warehouse building into a residential live-work building in Detroit. The project will include adding a second story to a portion of the building, rebuilding a section of the roof, interior demolition and infrastructure improvements. When completed, the project will include more than 10,000 square feet of redeveloped space and 12 loft-style live-work units with modern amenities. The project will generate a total capital investment of nearly $1.8 million, resulting in a $225,000 Michigan Community Revitalization Program performance-based grant. The city of Detroit is supporting the project with a 12-year Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Act tax abatement valued at $277,200.

* The city of Grayling has been awarded $448,775 in Community Development Block Grant funds for three building improvements needed for the Downtown Façade Improvement Project. The two buildings that comprise the Old AuSable Fly Shop will receive exterior renovations that will preserve the historic nature of the buildings. The third building, the Bear’s Den restaurant, will undergo a complete exterior renovation that will redesign the entrance of the building and improve its street presence. The project is expected to generate private investment of $182,558 and create three jobs. The city of Grayling will make an anticipated contribution of $6,000 toward the project.

* The Village of Spring Lake has received $137,000 in CDBG funds for blight elimination needed for the historic renovation of Isabel’s House, a counseling center located at 107 S. Division in downtown Spring Lake. The funds will be used to eliminate blight, replace siding and make other improvements that will restore this historic building and prevent further deterioration. The project is expected to generate private investment of $152,000. The Village of Spring Lake will make an anticipated contribution of $5,000 toward the project.

For more on the MEDC and its initiatives, visit michiganbusiness.org. For Michigan travel news, updates and information, visit michigan.org. Michigan residents interested in seeking employment with any of Michigan’s growing companies should check mitalent.org, where more than 96,000 jobs are currently available in a variety of industries.

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