The South Haven City Council has moved a new downtown housing and commercial development forward. At a Monday meeting, the council formally introduced the Center Street Hales Redevelopment Project and set a public hearing for it to be further discussed. Assistant City Manager Griffin Graham told the council the plan is for a five-story mixed use development that would include a combination of new commercial spaces, parking, and 29 housing units. He said the developer is seeking Planned Unit Development status for the project on Center Street between Quaker and Phoenix Streets, where the Hales department store used to be.
“There are some waivers being requested as part of the PUD process regarding height, the parking structure ramp slope, and landscaping with the intent of creating a higher quality development and more public benefit than would be possible otherwise,” Graham said.
Adam Locker with developer Locker & Locker Properties said this is the biggest development downtown in decades.
“We are very proud of our ability to save a previously dilapidated and largely given up on building, and we’re excited to present this continuation of the redevelopment of the block with this particular plan,” Locker said.
Council members had questions about the parking spaces to be created by the project. It would create about 70 spaces, more than would be needed for the commercial and residential spaces. Graham said they would mostly be for shoppers at the development, similar to the parking lots at any other business. The project has been in the works for about two years. Mayor Scott Smith said he’s glad to see it moving forward. The council then scheduled a public hearing on the PUD request for October 16.