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96 Pontiac Articles | Page: | Show All

Karmanos hopes to spark Pontiac revival with tech startups

Excerpt

Tech pioneer Pete Karmanos Jr. helped jump-start the downtown Detroit revival in 2003 by moving his Compuware headquarters from the suburbs into the gleaming, new 15-story, $450-million headquarters building at Campus Martius. Now he's hoping to do something similar for downtown Pontiac.

Read more.
 

Flagstar plans $10 million economic development program for Pontiac

Excerpt

Flagstar Bancorp Inc. announced a five-year $10 million economic development program for the city of Pontiac.

The program includes customized home loans for Pontiac residents and veterans; $2.5 million for small businesses, startups and business attraction; $1.5 million for the previously announced naming rights for the Flagstar Strand Theatre for the Performing Arts; and $1 million for financial literacy.

Read more.
 

M1 Concourse officially opens the largest automotive enthusiast destination in North America

M1 Concourse celebrated its official grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony attended by large crowds of customers, Detroit area automotive enthusiasts and local officials on Sunday, August 14, 2016. The 87-acre former General Motors property on the northwest corner of historic Woodward Avenue and South Boulevard in Pontiac, Michigan was targeted at the massive audience in Metro Detroit that is passionate about cars and motorsports.

At completion, the development will be the largest mixed-use automotive enthusiast destination in the world containing a 1.5-mile performance track, 250+ Private Garages, restaurants, and an auto-focused shopping village.

The first 130 Private Garages, representing Phase 1 and 2, were pre-sold over the past 18 months.  Our eighty Phase 1 “Founding Owners” began moving into their units in early August. The fifty Phase 2 units will be delivered by early 2017.  Phase 3 (43 units) will officially go on sale in September and is already 50% reserved.

“This was a challenging project to get out of the ground due to the site conditions, lack of traditional funding sources and overall skepticism about the scale of the project,” said Brad Oleshansky, the Founder and CEO of M1 Concourse. “My heartfelt thanks to the many people who believed in this project and provided the necessary support and encouragement.” 

M1 Concourse has received significant interest from companies seeking to reach the audiences who will enjoy M1 Concourse, including the private garage owners, corporations that will rent the track and other facilities for testing, training and marketing events, and the general public. Previously announced partnerships include an alliance with Champion (owned by Federal Mogul) to name the 1.5 performance track the “Champion Motor Speedway,” and Hagerty being named the “Official Insurance Partner” of M1 Concourse.   Additionally, FCA announced that the Dodge Viper ACR would be the “Official Pace Car” of M1 Concourse and its Dodge brand would be a fleet vehicle partner with the provision of Vipers and Hellcats for use in a variety of driving activities on the property.

M1 Concourse received cooperation and support of the City of Pontiac and Oakland County. “The City of Pontiac is proud of Brad Oleshansky and his team’s hard work and dedication to develop this site,” said Deirdre Waterman, Mayor of Pontiac. “The news and accomplishments of M1 Concourse continue to generate positive momentum in Pontiac’s redevelopment.”

The grand opening ceremony, attended by over 5,000 people, included presentations from United States Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence, Oakland County Executive, L. Brooks Patterson, Pontiac Mayor Deirdre Waterman, State of Michigan Representative Tim Greimel and Oakland County Treasurer Andy Meisner.  The collective theme of the presentations was one of transformation and the catalytic nature of the M1 Concourse development.  Surrounding properties have experience significant increase in value over the past 2 years as a result of the M1 Concourse development and the project is spurring other nearby investment.

Complete details on the project, including the private garage community, facility rental options and public events can be found at www.m1concourse.com, which was completely revamped to include a full event calendar, garage owner portal, the public “M1 Pit Crew” club and M1 branded merchandise store. 

About M1 Concourse
M1 Concourse will be both a private club and public destination designed to leverage the passion of the largest concentration of car enthusiasts in the world. The community of Private Garages will accommodate more than 1,000 classic cars set along a 1.5-mile performance track. A large portion of the project is open to the public, where people can enjoy restaurants, a walkable village of auto-focused businesses and year-round programming, including car shows, concerts, product demonstrations and more. The idea for M1 Concourse grew directly and organically from the needs of the local auto enthusiast community. Complete details can be found at www.m1concourse.com.
 

Regional development news round-up for June

It's been another busy month for development news in metropolitan Detroit. Let's catch up on some more development stories from the past four weeks.

Small for-profit businesses in the city of Pontiac are being encouraged to apply for Pitch 'N Pontiac, a small business competition that awards cash prizes and pro bono business consulting services. Seven finalists will be selected for a Pitch event on Aug. 31 where the $5,000 grand prize will be awarded as well as $3,000 for second place and $2,000 for third. The deadline to apply is Friday, July 29 at 5 p.m. Non-profits and franchises are not eligible for the contest.

Ten Oakland County communities were recognized for their vibrant downtown areas, each receiving perfect "10 out of 10" scores from the National Main Street Center in Chicago. The towns were rated on a range of criteria that included community support and historic preservation. Receiving perfect scores were Clawson, Farmington, Ferndale, Franklin, Highland, Holly, Lake Orion, Ortonville, Oxford, and Rochester.

In Wixom, a new facility is being built by TREMEC Corporation, creating 133 jobs and $54 million in total investment. The manufacturer of high-performance vehicle transmissions is receiving a $731,500 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant and the city of Wixom is offering property tax abatement.

Also receiving a Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant is Karma Automotive, which is being awarded $450,000 from the state for establishing an automotive engineering and purchasing hub in Troy. The company, which designs and manufactures luxury hybrid vehicles, will create up to 150 jobs and a $3.6 million investment. The city of Troy is providing the company marketing and promotional assistance as part of the deal.

A Peregrine Falcon chick hatched on the 11th floor of the Old Macomb County Building. Macomb County Executive Mark A. Hackel named the bird Grace, after his first-grade teacher and as a nod to all educators.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

Work begins on $20M Strand Theatre renovations in Pontiac

Excerpt

Work began today on a $20-million renovation project of the Flagstar Strand Theatre for the Performing Arts in Pontiac, which will include restoring the theater, along with adding a Slows Bar-BQ restaurant at the facility and an event space. The theater, acquired by Brent and Kyle Westberg, is expected to reopen in the fall.

"Brent and I looked at the Flagstar Strand Theatre project as an opportunity to continue the forward progress of the reinvention of the city of Pontiac, particularly downtown Pontiac," says Kyle Westberg, president and CEO of Pontiac-based West Construction Services.

Read more.
 

Downtown Pontiac's newest tenant is a women's professional clothing boutique with a mission

Downtown Pontiac celebrated the addition of a new tenant, Career Dress, to its downtown community.

Career Dress is more than a business, it's a nonprofit community service. The organization looks like a typical women's clothing storefront from the sidewalk, but inside the store, the team at Career Dress outfits 30 women a month with clothing suitable for careers. Through their service, Career Dress provides women of low- to -moderate-income with professional attire to help them gain employment and obtain economic independence.

The storefront at 55 W. Huron St. provides Career Dress with some much needed space as well as the added benefit of the exposure gained from occupying a downtown Pontiac storefront. Career Dress was started in 2002.

Career Dress is a welcome addition to downtown Pontiac's small business community, which has added 15 new businesses since Dream Cruise weekend this past summer of 2015. According to the city, downtown Pontiac currently has 33 retail shops and six bars/restaurants.

Career Dress has received support from numerous merchants and corporations throughout the tri-county area. To help outfit their nonprofit boutique with donated professional clothing and accessories, call (248) 481-8276. For those seeking job assistance, e-mail Career Dress at info@careerdress.org. Career Dress receives referrals for new clients through partnerships with 40 different agencies.

Career Dress is located at 55 W. Huron St. in downtown Pontiac.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

Bike loop, fix-it stations, and more coming to Pontiac

As a slew of economic changes come to Pontiac, officials are turning to quality-of-life improvements for the seat of Oakland County government, which had fallen on hard times for decades and now has the makings of a revival.

Several bike-friendly initiatives are the latest effort to make Pontiac more livable, likeable and economically viable.
 
New bicycle loops, fix-it stations and way-finding signs were recently installed in downtown Pontiac. They will give cyclists safer and easier paths to the public library, downtown businesses and city parks from the Clinton River Trail. The Friends of Clinton River Trail, Healthy Pontiac, We Can! Coalition, and Oakland County are among supporters and sponsors of the changes.
 
A special event celebrating the improvements took place on Oct. 21 and featured a ribbon cutting at one of the new fix-it stations. Cyclists from Pontiac Light Riders tried out the new features of the trail.
 
Source: Bill Mullan, spokesman, Oakland County
Writer: Kim North Shine

Pontiac Silverdome to meet wrecking ball

Excerpt

Six months after hitting the market with a $29 million price tag, the Pontiac Silverdome is out of time.

The property's owner has shifted strategies and is now preparing to tear down the empty and battered 40-year-old stadium next year in the belief that the 127-acre site would be more marketable without the Silverdome than with it.

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Euro-Peds National Center for Intensive Pediatric Physical Therapy opens standalone treatment center

Euro-Peds® National Center for Intensive Pediatric Physical Therapy announces the building purchase and opening of its treatment center at 3000 Centerpoint Parkway in Pontiac, Mich.; near I-75 and M-59 at the intersection of Square Lake and Opdyke roads. The first Center of its kind to open in the United States in 1999, Euro-Peds has helped more than 1400 children and young adults from Michigan and nearly every state achieve greater mobility. Many patients return to Euro-Peds annually for additional intensive treatment sessions to continue to gain increased mobility.
 
The new facility has large, private therapy suites for the entire family and features close, front entrance parking and extra-wide hallways for mobility equipment, biking, bowling and other fun therapy games at the one-level, 8,400 sq. ft. building.  The Center previously was located in leased space at Doctor’s Hospital of Michigan, also in Pontiac. Euro-Peds is privately owned and is no longer associated with Doctor’s Hospital of Michigan.
 
The new building also houses the Euro-Peds Foundation – a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to supporting families with grants for intensive physical therapy and providing education to children and their caregivers.
 
“This new Center gives Euro-Peds a solid presence in Southeast Michigan and beyond to help us effectively reach and teach children functional skills that lead to greater independence and health. The Euro-Peds ’ licensed staff and Foundation look forward to welcoming new patients and working with current families from all over the U.S. We also look forward to supporting other area healthcare providers with our treatment programs that are complementary to other treatment models at outpatient clinics and hospital-based programs,” commented Michelle Haney, PT, MSPT, Director of Euro-Peds National Center for Intensive Pediatric PT and Euro-Peds Foundation President.
 
ABOUT EURO-PEDS® NATIONAL CENTER FOR INTENSIVE PEDIATRIC PHYSICAL THERAPY
Euro-Peds® National Center for Intensive Pediatric Physical Therapy helps children and young adults with cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury, spina bifida and a variety of other gross motor disorders learn new skills to improve mobility, self-esteem and independence.

Located in Pontiac, Michigan, the Center opened as North America’s first intensive pediatric physical therapy center in 1999 for families throughout the U.S. and beyond seeking a specialized regimen of practice conditions, including use of the Universal Exercise Unit and optional patented suit therapy to optimize motor training and significantly improve motor skills. For more information about Euro-Peds’ individualized programs based on intensive therapy techniques originally pioneered in Eastern Europe, visit www.EuroPeds.org or call (248) 857-6776. Most insurances accepted. Treatment and travel grants may be available through the Euro-Peds Foundation. Visit www.EuroPedsFoundation.org to learn more and apply.
 
ABOUT EURO-PEDS® FOUNDATION
Established in 2013, the Euro-Peds Foundation (EPF) raises funds and disburses treatment and travel grants to families of children with gross motor disorders in need of financial assistance for specialized, intensive physical therapy at Euro-Peds National Center for Intensive Pediatric Physical Therapy in Pontiac, Michigan. Governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, the Foundation also assists in providing education about therapeutic interventions for the children and their caregivers. EPF believes every child deserves a first step. For more information, visit www.EuroPedsFoundation.org or call 1-844-EURO-PEDS (844-387-6733).
 

Is Pontiac the model for blight removal in Michigan?

The city of Detroit's fight against blight is well documented, but it is not the only city in southeast Michigan dealing with this issue. Pontiac, too, is getting aggressive when it comes to the remediation of problem properties, particularly vacant homes, in distressed neighborhoods.
 
According to a recent opinion piece for Crain's Detroit Business by Bill Pulte, founder of the Detroit Blight Authority and managing partner of Bloomfield Hills-based Pulte Capital Partners LLC, Pontiac is a shining example for how cooperation across sectors can effectively combat blight and increase property values in distressed neighborhoods.
 
Writes Pulte:
 
"I have been invited to visit great cities, large and small, across the United States to present time-tested experience, guidance and solutions for their blight challenges. When I am there, I always share the Detroit success stories from the original pilots, but the story that I tell most is that of Pontiac's politicians and leaders working together to solve the problem and put the credit aside. From the beginning, the question in Pontiac has been: How do we quickly and completely remove all blight from our neighborhoods and our city to create a blight-free, truly prosperous city?"
 
To date, Pontiac has removed over a third of the 905 homes identified as blighted during a 2014 survey of the city's residential properties.
 
Read more: Crain's Detroit Business

Local organization steps up to be part of the rebirth of Pontiac

Pontiac is open for business. With a renewed spirit, the City of Pontiac is on the cusp of rebuilding. To support local small businesses and address a main concern – lack of financing, The Center for Empowerment and Economic Development-CEED has stepped up to provide loans to small businesses located in Pontiac.

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, the major constraint limiting the growth, expansion, and wealth creation of small firms – especially women- and minority-owned businesses is inadequate access to capital.

CEED has made a commitment to provide $500,000 in loans available for the next 5 years at a fixed interest rate of 5%. Loans up to $50,000 can be used for machinery, equipment, inventory and some working capital.

“It is vital that the City of Pontiac create opportunities for our small businesses to gain access to capital” says Mayor Deirdre Waterman. “We look forward to working with CEED to support as many Pontiac small businesses as possible.”

CEED is no stranger to being a loan provider. As a pioneer in the industry, they were one of the first microlenders in the country in 1984 and have provided more than $5.5 Million in loans creating over 1,800 jobs. The organization has a stellar history of working with neighborhood business districts. By partnering with local municipalities, CEED is able to connect their resources with businesses in need.

“A loan from us comes with more than money. Part of the loan relationship is technical assistance which can range from help with bidding on federal contracts to using social media as part of your marketing strategy” says Michelle Richards, CEED executive director.

“Alternative solutions paired with, or without, traditional banking options are key to our City's business growth right now” says Glen Konopaskie, Executive Director of the Pontiac Downtown Business Association. “I look forward to integrating this program into our new Business Attraction Program that we will be rolling out soon for Downtown."

Learn more about how you may qualify for up to $50,000
Monthly Small Business loan orientations are scheduled in Waterford at the Oakland County One Stop Shop Business Center (2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Building 41W, Waterford, MI 48328). Attendance is free; registration is available through the Advantage Oakland or CEED website – www.miceed.org.

About CEED – www.miceed.org
The Center for Empowerment and Economic Development is a Michigan-based nonprofit organization which advances business owners by certifying 1,000 women business owners as a regional partner for the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, training 15,000 business owners and lending more than $5.5 million resulting in the creation of more than 1,800 jobs and over $11.6 billion in revenue generated. 
 

Detroit area developer stoked to do condo for car buffs

Excerpt: 

This winter's snow and ice can't melt fast enough for Brad Oleshansky, Birmingham car buff and founder of the planned 87-acre M1 Concourse off Woodward Avenue in Pontiac.

Read more
 

New partnership offers connected vehicle technology credentialing program

SAE International, the Connected Vehicle Trade Association (CVTA), and Mobile Comply have formed a partnership to jointly develop and deliver a three-course training and credentialing program in connected vehicle technology.

The program is aimed at IT professionals, software engineers, automotive engineers, information and vehicle technicians, insurance and telecommunications professionals, transportation staff, and service professionals who desire understanding of Vehicle-to-Vehicle, Vehicle-to-Infrastructure, and Vehicle-to-X connectivity inclusive to the rapidly advancing field of Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) and Connected Vehicles.

Using a blended learning approach, the first course in the series, Connected Vehicle Professional I - Function, Protocols, and Architecture, will be offered in conjunction with SAE’s World Congress in April. Access to online course content will open April 13, followed by two half-day classroom sessions on April 20, 21 at the Penobscot building in Detroit. The class, totaling 26 hours of content, finishes with additional online learning modules and final learning assessment which concludes on April 29.

Learners who successfully complete the online learning assessment earn a Certificate of Competency, jointly awarded from SAE and CVTA. To learn more or register for the course, visit http://mobilecomply.com/sae-world-congress/.

The other two courses in the series include Connected Vehicle Professional II - Standards, Organizations, Programs, V2X and Connected Vehicle Professional III - Data, Markets, Policy and Regulations. All three courses combined total 100 hours of training.

Kevin Perry, Global Manager of SAE’s Professional Development program commented that, “This is an exciting opportunity for SAE to address the growing demand in automotive and allied industries to better understand connected vehicle technologies and the systems those technologies enable. Partnering with CVTA and Mobile Comply brings together a strong set of partners that can define training needs, deliver quality training, validate mastery of training content, and confer a powerful industry credential.”

CVTA Executive Director Scott McCormick explained that, “CVTA, SAE and Mobile Comply seek to provide a solid foundation of learning across the full connected vehicle ecosystem. Our goal is to provide a full understanding of the vision, purpose, uses, practices and implementations of vehicle communications so that the trainees may leverage this knowledge for their companies and projects. Business sectors typically outside of the automotive space will understand where the V2X environment is heading, and how to participate in that future.”

Elaina Farnsworth, CEO of Mobile Comply added, "With the potential for hundreds of thousands of jobs in the Connected Vehicle space in the next few years, and the growing participation of non-typical automotive industries such as insurance, IT, analytics and telecommunications, it become imperative to have a common frame of understanding, and a mechanism to establish competency in this field. Credentials are one important and universally recognized way to do this. With the structured and scalable training Mobile Comply can provide, the knowledge CVTA can impart, and the adjudication of that learning independently by SAE International we have a robust, consistent and multi-sector learning environment that is crucial for professionals entering into and working in this space."

SAE International is a global association committed to being the ultimate knowledge source for the engineering profession. By uniting more than 137,000 engineers and technical experts, we drive knowledge and expertise across a broad spectrum of industries. We act on two priorities: encouraging a lifetime of learning for mobility engineering professionals and setting the standards for industry engineering. We strive for a better world through the work of our philanthropic SAE Foundation, including programs like A World in Motion® and the Collegiate Design Series™.

Mobile Comply is an international leader in mobile training and curriculum development. Its training & certifications are recognized worldwide for excellence in mobile connectivity, mobile development, application security and connected vehicle curricula among others. Mobile Comply specializes in programs for mobile implementation, related policy and regulations and how to deploy mobile devices, applications, and proper security practices. We also partner with organizations to develop customized educational content and delivery strategies. Associates include writers, editors, subject matter experts, instructional designers, and trainers.

The Connected Vehicle Trade Association (CVTA) is a non-profit business league established to facilitate the interaction, and advance the interests, of the entities involved in the vehicle communication environment. The Connected Vehicle Trade Association enables the collaboration of companies, organizations, and governmental bodies engaged in developing bidirectional vehicle communications. Membership is open to any corporation, public entities, standards and specification organizations, educational institutions and qualified individuals.

http://www.sae.org

 

Slows Bar BQ to open location in Pontiac's former Strand Theatre

Can lightning strike a rehabilitating urban neighborhood twice? Corktown's hugely popular Slows Bar BQ has signed a lease to open a restaurant in the former Strand Theatre in downtown Pontiac, which is planning to undergo a $21 million renovation and reopen in the fourth quarter this year.

Read more.

 

M1 Concourse starts its engines

M1 Concourse announced that it has acquired an 87-acre former General Motors property on the northwest corner of Woodward Avenue and South Boulevard in Pontiac, Michigan. The property was acquired from RACER Trust, which was created in March 2011 by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to seek buyers to invest in the redevelopment and reuse of properties owned by the former General Motors Corporation before its 2009 bankruptcy.

M1 Concourse has received preliminary site plan approval from the City of Pontiac to construct a mixed use development targeted at the massive audience of people in Metro Detroit passionate about cars and motorsports. When completed, M1 Concourse will be one of the largest automotive enthusiast destinations in North America and will contain a 1.5-mile performance track, 250+ private garages, restaurants, an auto- focused shopping village and office space.

“The response to our plans has been overwhelming since we first announced the project,” said Brad Oleshansky, the Founder and CEO of M1 Concourse. “We’re excited to begin preparing the land and proceeding with the development.” The first phase of private garages will be for sale officially in September 2014. “We are appreciative of the support we have received from the City of Pontiac, Oakland County and the State of Michigan, as well as the RACER Trust, who believed in our concept from the beginning,” said Oleshansky.

“We congratulate Mr. Oleshansky and his team and look forward to what promises to be a tremendous new development for Pontiac and Oakland County,” said Elliott P. Laws, Administrative Trustee of RACER Trust. “This is great news both for car lovers and for the community as a whole, and represents an ongoing fulfillment of RACER’s mission to bring new investment and jobs to the former GM properties in our portfolio.”

M1 Concourse recently partnered with Uniprop, based in Birmingham, Michigan. Uniprop made a significant equity investment in the project and will lend its expertise in real estate development, construction and finance. “This is the perfect project for Uniprop as it draws on all of our core competencies, and we are excited about the potential M1 Concourse has to make a significant impact on Pontiac and the surrounding areas,” said Uniprop’s Chairman Paul Zlotoff.

M1 Concourse reports receiving over five hundred positive responses and genuine interest from potential customers considering the purchase of a private garage. Phase 1 Grand Opening is anticipated to occur during the summer of 2015.

“In celebration of the closing, we’re hosting a Dream Cruise Week Kick-Off Car Show on Sunday, August 10, 2014 from 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. at our site,” said Oleshansky. “Initial response to our invitation has been extremely positive, a strong indication of the passion auto enthusiasts share for their cars.”

About M1 Concourse
M1 Concourse will be both a private club and public destination designed to leverage the passion of the largest concentration of car enthusiasts in the world. The community of private garages will accommodate more than 1,000 classic cars set along a 1.5-mile performance track. A large portion of the project is open to the public, where people can enjoy restaurants, a walkable village of auto-focused businesses and year- round programming, including car shows, concerts, product demonstrations and more. The idea for M1 Concourse grew directly and organically from the needs of the local auto enthusiast community. Complete details can be found at www.m1concourse.com.

M1 Concourse is part of a recent resurgence of development in Pontiac and will join much-anticipated projects, like the Indian Hill District Downtown, Wessen Lawn Tennis Club, The Links at Crystal Lake and the Strand Theatre. 
 
96 Pontiac Articles | Page: | Show All
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