Planned renovation of 820 Monroe NW into apartments, retail could generate $1.7M annual spending

The Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Exemption Certificate request (OPRE) regarding the proposed renovation of the former Sackner Products Plant into a residential and retail venue predicts the project could generate some $1.7 million in annual spending once it's completed and fully leased.

The proposed renovation by 616 Development includes converting the four-story circa 1924 building into 89 market rate apartments, plus ground floor retail and hospitality spaces.

The Monroe North Tax Increment Financing Authority approved the OPRE, freezing the tax value of the existing building plus any new tax increment revenues for 10 years, an estimated amount of $27,700 per year. After 10 years, the property could generate $115,000 per year in new tax revenues.

The project could run some $21.8 million and, says Chris Knape of SeyferthPR, spokesperson for 616 Development, "other incentives will be required that are pending. Start/completion dates will depend on timing of approval of the incentives and finalizing construction financing." Knape did not elaborate on what the other incentives are.

"There is an incredible amount of energy in the Monroe North neighborhood thanks to projects like the restoration of the Grand River and Michigan State University’s purchase of the former Grand Rapids Press properties," says Derek Coppess, owner of 616 Development, in a recent email. "We believe bringing a mixed-use 616 Lofts community to 820 Monroe will add to the vitality of the neighborhood while helping to meet strong demand for market-rate apartments downtown."

820 Monroe has been used as commercial space for a number of businesses, but as of the December OPRE request, the 156,000-square-foot building was only 50 percent occupied and had been certified by the city assessor as an obsolete facility.

Other projects by 616 Development revolve around apartment communities called 616 Lofts that are in historic buildings scattered throughout downtown Grand Rapids, including loft spaces above Flanagan's (Pearl St.), apartments above the Grand Rapids Brewing Co. (Ionia and Fulton), and apartments in the historic Kendall Building (Monroe Center NE).

Writer: Deborah Johnson Wood, Development News Editor
Renderings courtesy of 616 Development and Integrated Architecture
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