East Lansing blighted building torn down after years of failed projects

EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – 6 News told you last month that East Lansing city officials pulled the plug on a multi-million dollar plan known as the “Park District Project” after developers couldn’t come to an agreement on a transfer of a $10-million business tax credit.

While the project was scrapped, crews still followed through with plans to demolish the building.

For more than a decade, developers have been submitting plans to turn the blight on the corner of Grand River and Abbot into beautiful as it sat year after year in East Lansing’s downtown.

It hasn’t exactly been easy; in fact there have been a number of failed attempts.

The latest plan was to turn the space into a hotel with apartments and a few businesses thrown in, but that project fell through after a disagreement with the prior and current developer when it came to the transfer of Michigan tax credits.

For East Lansing Mayor Mark Meadows, seeing the eyesore come crashing down has been a long time coming and he says it’s the start of a bright future for East Lansing.

“This is about East Lansing’s past, the past is behind us now…I think this has been something that people have wanted in the community for a long time,” said Meadows.

“We’re just thrilled; it’s been a long road. My guests will be able to enjoy a little nicer view then they’ve had for the last 17, 18 years,” Tom Bramson stated.

Bramson is a managing partner at Beggars Banquet and his business sits directly next to the soon-to-be vacant lot.

He says he’s excited for future plans to get underway.

“We remain very hopeful that they and the city will come up with something to put there…in the meantime, certainly we’re hopeful that maybe we can do some parking while the ‘Center City Project’ goes in,” said Bramson.

“I think that’s a long term goal objective to provide more parking on this side of town and this isn’t the spot to do that…I’d rather see green space,” Meadows stated.

Mayor Meadows says he’s optimistic about this new space and believes it will eventually turn into something similar to the “Park District Project.”

Mayor Meadows also says once the building is fully demolished, the tax credits controlled by the former developer will no longer exist.

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