Outdated Concrete Plant Plans Big Upgrade

By: Shannon Kantner Email
By: Shannon Kantner Email

It's out with the old and in with the new as a north Lansing company announces big plans to redevelop its current facility.

The former Boichot concrete plant needed an upgrade if it wanted to stay in business here, so the city stepped in to help.

People in the neighborhood, like Bill Jenkins, say it's about time the site got a facelift. Jenkins has seen a lot of people come and go over the years, but the concrete plant across the street is one neighbor that hasn't budged.

"I've lived here since 1967, and they've stayed the same," Jenkins said.

The building is so unchanged, it's considered obsolete. The company thought about taking business elsewhere, but with help from a Lansing Brownfield Redevelopment incentive, the site on Turner Street will be torn down and a new one will be built in its place.

"It's really about demolition of not so great looking buildings and an upgrade creating a state of the art new facility, along with aesthetic improvements along the road," President and CEO of Lansing Area Economic Partnership Bob Trezise said.

It's a $2 million project that would move the building back farther from the road, improve the look of the neighborhood, and create jobs.

"Our goal is to have the front here of Turner Street cleaned up and make it look a little bit better," Sales Manager at High Grade Materials Brian Kerkstra said.

The mayor said this is a big win for the area.

"This is a win-win all around," Mayor Virg Bernero said. "A win for the company, a win for the city, a win for the neighborhood and jobs, at a time when we can certainly use them."

He said instead of being an eye sore for years to come, High Grade Materials will be a place for community pride. Neighbors say they've always liked the industrial environment there, and they're excited about the improvements.

"I think it would just brighten things up a little bit with new buildings and equipment and everything," Jenkins said. "It would make the backdrop of the whole place look a lot better."

Construction is expected to begin in the winter, and most neighbors say a little roadwork and noise is worth it for the upgrades.

City Council still needs to approve the brownfield plan.

The project is expected to take a little over a year to complete.


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