Spring has arrived. Bright rays of sunlight are now shining onto the Michigan Avenue corridor and the Red Cedar Development. This $250 million mixed-use project is making significant progress. This is exceptional news considering the challenges of COVID-19 guidelines and construction restrictions. It is also a perfect example of a public-private partnership.
Steady work was completed on the senior living and market rate housing, as well as the two student housing buildings. The new University Edge has a leasing office located in downtown East Lansing, and units are quickly leasing to students for the fall 2021 semester.
“Despite statewide construction shutdowns back in early 2020, we’ve made excellent progress thanks to the support, creativity and teamwork from all involved in this project. Our subcontractors and the entire team have worked together to maintain an aggressive schedule and safe project,” stated Josh Corna, CEO of Continental Building Co.
Frank Kass, a founding partner of Continental/Ferguson LLC, said he believes mid-market development projects hold the greatest potential for the region and believes government leadership through Lansing Mayor Andy Schor’s office was critical to the success of the project.
“This is how local government should work. Linking neighbors, commerce and government to do great things,” said Schor. “We are thrilled with the project and excited at the progress being made.”
The construction is using a phased approach that allows the most efficient path to completion. This process highlights the diversity of the project and its potential impact on local business. Blair Mayes, longtime business owner of University Foreign Car, which is two blocks away on East Kalamazoo Street, said, “It’s going to be a wonderful addition to the community. It’s helping bring MSU closer to Lansing.”
“The progress we’ve achieved during this challenging time has been nothing short of extraordinary,” said Joel Ferguson, a founding partner of Continental/Ferguson Development LLC. “We need more large-scale projects like this to bring us together and grow as a region.”
The Red Cedar project is a mixed-use development connecting the state Capitol in downtown Lansing to Michigan State University and adjacent communities along the Michigan Avenue/Grand River corridor. Long viewed as an important yet under-realized area of possibility, this project will serve as a powerful catalyst for new multi-generational housing, vibrant activity, environmental stewardship, wide-ranging economic impact and regional pride. In addition, this development supports the work taking place on the Montgomery drain, transforming a longtime environmental problem into a beautiful, clean and natural habitat for all to enjoy.
The project will include a dual-brand hotel, market rate housing, senior living, restaurants, student housing, a park and public amenities.
Christopher Stralkowski, executive project manager for Continental/Ferguson Development LLC, recognized the hard work of all who contributed to this undertaking, and said, “Instrumental to our success was the dedication and support of Mayor Schor and his staff, along with previous city leadership, LEAP, the Lansing Brownfield Development Authority, Williamstown Township, all of the citizens participating in numerous community meetings and, of course, Lansing City Council.”