MEDC announces grants aimed at property redevelopment, job expansion

Posted on February 25, 2014

The Michigan Economic Development Corp. announced today that several metro Detroit businesses received state incentives to redevelop properties and expand jobs in the region.

The Michigan Community Revitalization Program approved a $3.5 million equity contribution, labeled a performance-based incentive, to Strathmore Apartments Limited Dividend Housing Association LLC to redevelop the derelict Strathmore Hotel at 70 W. Alexandrine in Midtown. The University Cultural Center Association, a subsidiary of Midtown Detroit Inc., is a co-applicant on the grant.

The $28.4 million investment, which includes converting the eight-story hotel into 129 one- and two-bedroom apartments, is expected to create three full-time jobs and one part-time job.

The Detroit Historic District Commission approved the project in November.

The grant contains provisions allowing the Michigan Strategic Fund, overseer of the revitalization program, to sell its equity interest in the apartments upon completion. It’s unknown when the project will be completed.

The revitalization program also approved a $1 million grant to support the redevelopment of the Milner Hotel, at 1526 Centre St. near Comerica Park.

Ashley Owner LLC will receive the grant to complete the $8.2 million redevelopment of the Milner, transforming the property once owned by the Ilitch family into 61 one- and two-bedroom apartments.

The project is expected to create 10 full-time and 30-part time jobs, according to the MEDC.

Livonia-based McLaren Performance Technologies Inc. received approval to expand its job creation credits to 109 from 34 beginning in 2015.

The engineering firm proposes consolidating its sales office in Southfield and engineering center in Livonia into one site in Livonia.

The Michigan Economic Growth Authority approved an expansion of the credit for the $28 million investment.

Plymouth Township-based AVL Powertrain Engineering Inc. also received approval for increased job creation credits for 100 new jobs.

MEGA approved two high-technology job creation credits for AVL in 2006 and 2009. The company now plans to create 225 total jobs in Plymouth Township and Ann Arbor through 2017.

The Strategic Fund board also approved a modification to an award for Detroit Venture Partners LLC, allowing the firm to raise more than $50 million in its investment fund.

In October 2013, the Strategic Fund approved an award of $2.25 million to DVP through the Pure Michigan Venture Development Fund to create an investment not to exceed $50 million. However, the fund is expected to exceed $65 million.

The MEDC said exceeding the initial target will have a net positive impact on the region.