This article is being cross posted from the livongstondaily.com website. We are so happy to be listed here with all of the great projects going on all around us!
Fall projects, lasting impact in Livingston
Written by Wayne Peal – Daily Press & Argus
September 22, 2013
From Mt. Brighton Ski Area to the Latson Road interchange to downtown Howell, a series of major projects to be completed this fall will impact Livingston County for years to come. That was the message from speakers at Tuesday’s kickoff of the Good Morning Livingston breakfast series. From a newly configured —but not larger —mountain to new ski lifts, to a new restaurant and scanner-ready passes, Mt. Brighton is making $10 million worth of renovations expected to be completed in time for the start of ski season. “Gone will be the gates and the security guards,” said Taylor Ogilvie of Vail Resorts, which recently purchased the site. The site fits in well with Vail’s overall marketing plans, Ogilvie said. “When we bought Mt. Brighton, a lot of people asked why,” Ogilvie said. “(But) the mountains of the Midwest are where our customers live.” The site will also host a U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association event, Ogilvie said, the first event of its kind in southeastern Michigan in about 20 years. Ogilvie was among those spoke during Tuesday’s event, which was sponsored by the Howell Area Chamber of Commerce. Other speakers included Genoa Township Supervisor Gary McCririe and Howell City Manager Shea Charles. Development around the Latson Road interchange will be anchored by a “campus ,” McCririe said.“It could be a hospital campus, an educational campus or a business campus,” McCririe said. Though interest had been “tepid” due to the interchange’s long planning process and slumping economy, McCririe expects to it pick up quickly with the economy recovering and the interchange expected to be open this fall. Already, restaurants and a hotel chain have expressed interest in opening near the interchange. “We’ve heard Tim Hortons and Culver’s,” McCririe said. The interchange is the result of unprecedented cooperation between the state, county, township and private investors, he added. Related road projects, McCririe said, will produce seven traffic lanes near the intersection of Latson and Grand River Avenue. On its own, the township plans to add a new traffic signal west of the intersection, near Meijer, depending upon the outcome of a road millage vote. In the coming year, downtown Howell will be anchored by “two capstone projects,” Charles said, referring to the Heart of Howell project to the west and opening of The Root Restaurant & Bar to the east. ‘Amazing’ Progress has been “amazing,” Charles said, on the Heart of Howell, where three historic storefronts on Grand River Avenue are being combined into a new facility. An announcement on a first-floor restaurant could be coming within a month, Charles said. A $52 million expansion plan by auto supplier Thai Summit America Corp. will also come to fruition in the coming year.“This project is huge not just for Howell but for the region,” Charles said. The coming year should also see the first residential growth in the city in ages, with apartment and condominium projects planned. The Root Restaurant & Bar will open next fall at the now-closed Howell Theater. Monthly Good Morning Livingston breakfasts continue through May, with next month’s program to feature Brighton resident Bill Nowling, spokesman for Detroit emergency financial manager Kevin Orr. Information is available on the chamber’s newly revamped website, http://www.howell.org.