February 25, 2020
Source: Brad Devereaux
Department: Mlive Michigan
PLAINWELL, MI - The city of Plainwell was granted $5,100,000 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to assist in the final phase of blight elimination related to the Plainwell Paper Mill, the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) reports.
The project will be the final phase of demolishing the remaining "non-contributing" historic buildings that exist on the former Plainwell Paper Mill site.
The obsolete mill located at 200 Allegan Street is on 36 acres along the Kalamazoo River and directly adjacent to downtown.
At one time, the mill had contributed 18% of the city of Plainwell s tax base and employed 400 workers, MSF said. The mill discontinued operation and formally declared bankruptcy in 2000, MSF said.
The closure of the mill created challenges for the community due to the loss of tax base, according to the MSF, and it continues to be a challenge for the community. The city of Plainwell purchased the mill in 2006 to ensure that it is redeveloped in line with the community s goals that include developing a regional asset by creating jobs, housing, recreational opportunities, and increased services, MSF said.
City Manager Erik Wilson said officials have spoken with potential developers in the past, and there are always two roadblocks they hit when considering developing the site: cleanup of the site and demolition.
Read the entire article Plainwell granted $5.1M to demolish old paper plant buildings.