ESCANABA — A big announcement tonight in Escanaba about a new waterfront development project.
A joint meeting was held tonight between the Escanaba City Council and the Delta County Board of Commissioners.
According to the Radio Results Network, it was announced that a developer has stepped forward and wants to spend $18.3 million to redevelop the old Delta County Jail site as well as the Delta County Chamber building nearby.
The development would be anchored by a 80-90 room high end hotel to open by October of 2021. The Second phase would include retail, residential, and other mixed use in the complex.
The developers and architects were on hand tonight to unveil the details of the plan, which would use local labor and financing from the Upper Peninsula State Bank.
Both the city council and county board voted unanimously to approve the concept of the agreement. The company involved has experience in developing the Marina area of Hammond Indiana.
“I am impressed with the plan. I have some questions about it, this day is going to be remembered as the day that we started talking about it,” Escanaba Mayor Marc Tall told RRN News. “It’s a work in progress. There will be changes to it.”
“This will benefit the entire community. This is part of the reason I ran for city council. To bring more development here,” Councilwoman Peggy O’Connell also told RRN News.
“This is a great night for all of Delta County,” County board chairman Patrick Johnson told RRN News. “It gives me goosebumps just having such a great agreement between two forms of government. It’s just absolutely wonderful to include a developer and include architects. It’s just going to be a great development.”
Representatives from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the county’s Economic Development Alliance were also on hand tonight.
The downtown property along Little Bay deNoc is now vacant because the county jail and sheriffs department moved to a new facility near Bay College. The nearby Chamber of Commerce building, which is owned by the city and has been leased to the chamber for the last 53 years, is vacant because the chamber recently opened a new facility at the UP State Fairgrounds.