Rapid restoration project could be done by 2025

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — When his wife told him they were going to Grand Rapids, Michigan for a rural letter carriers convention, Tennessean Mike Hinton was less than thrilled. 

He had a preconceived notion of what the city was like.

“(A) city (with) lots of people. Not this,” he said.

This, being the Grand River downtown. When he snagged a 30-pound catfish with the fishing pole he picked up from Walmart from the riverwalk behind the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel, his attitude about the town and the river changed for the better.

However, the river will look much different by 2025. That’s Grand Rapids Whitewater's target date for the completion of phases one and two of the river restoration project. It's a project that is expected to cause a ripple effect, both literally and figuratively, on downtown Grand Rapids' redevelopment efforts.

Grand Rapids city commissioners got an update on the project Tuesday morning.

Grand Rapids Whitewater's Richard Bishop says they're working on getting the needed state and federal permits for phase one of the project, which involves the section of the river between Fulton Street and I-196.



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