CITY OF MUSKEGON
CITY COMMISSION WORKSESSION
Monday, October 11, 2021
City Commission Chambers
Present: Mayor Gawron, Vice Mayor Hood, Commissioners Rinsema-Sybenga, Emory,
Johnson, and German
Absent: Commissioner Ramsey
Mayors’ Institute on City Design Report
Deputy Manager, LeighAnn Mikesell, gave a presentation on the Mayors’ Institute on
City Design (MICD) Report, Investing in Equity for Jackson Hill.
At the end of 2020, the City of Muskegon was selected by the MICD to participate in a
new Alumni Technical Assistance program that assists communities in finding solutions
to critical planning and design challenges.
The MICD is a leadership initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership
with the U.S. Conference of Mayors. Since 1986, MICD has helped transform
communities through design by preparing mayors to be the chief urban designers of
In January 2021, the MICD offered the City two leading experts to work with staff and
community stakeholders by providing design and development assistance on important
issues facing the Jackson Hill Neighborhood. Specifically, staff asked for their
assistance in seeking greater investment equity to identify new commercial
development opportunities in this neighborhood. Our focus areas included partnering
with the community to define a vision for the future, assisting the neighbors and
businesses to find success through development which fits the neighborhood, and
bridging the physical and social barriers to economic success.
The MICD Resource Team has since presented staff with a report on proposed
planning recommendations for the Jackson Hill community to consider in the future. On
August 26th, the City hosted a community conversation with Jackson Hill residents
where details of the report were discussed and residents provided ideas for
neighborhood improvement. The ultimate goal is to work alongside our neighbors to
address past economic disinvestment and help support the future of the Jackson Hill
neighborhood as well as model similar neighbor engagement opportunities throughout
Adelaide Pointe Development Agreement
The team has been working with the developer at Adelaide Pointe to negotiate mutually
favorable terms on a development agreement that will stipulate funding and incentives
for the project. The draft presented is mutually agreed upon by staff and Ryan Leetsma,
the project’s owner and developer.
The structure of this development agreement is quite different than other recent projects
due to the large amount of new public infrastructure that is required to build out the
project. We would essentially be funding the roads, water, sewer and other public
amenities for a whole new district of the Nims Neighborhood and an
extension/connection of downtown to the lakefront. Tonight, staff will walk through the
development agreement in detail with commissioners and take questions. We will hope
for a vote on October 26, 2021, when the associated Brownfield Plan Amendment is
anticipated to be before the Commission.
Jake Eckholm, Economic Development Director, gave an overview of the development
agreement. Discussion took place regarding this item. This will appear on the agenda
again at a later date.
Ride Muskegon Operating Agreement
City staff has developed an operating agreement with Ride Muskegon, LLC to operate a
scooter rental business in the City. The business will utilize a cellular phone application
to unlock electric scooters for customers to access. Scooters will have designated pick
up and drop off locations, and will not be permitted to be abandoned in non-approved
Staff is recommending approval of the operating agreement. Ride Muskegon, LLC is
locally owned and operated. To our knowledge, Ride Muskegon, LLC is the only such
company located in the city limits. The operating agreement ensures that Ride
Muskegon, LLC and its customers follow the ruled and regulations as assigned by the
City of Muskegon, and also ensures that the City of Muskegon will not rent similar space
to new competitor companies during the operating period.
Frank Peterson, City Manager, explained the agreement for scooters to be placed in
various places around the city for visitors to rent. Discussion took place. This item will
appear on the regular meeting agenda on October 12, 2021.
Presentation from West Urban Properties on progress of PILOT Development
Dave Dusendang with West Urban Properties has prepared a progress report on the
first phase of the City’s PILOT rental unit development agreement with his firm. He is
requesting authorization to proceed with the second phase of the agreement, which
includes 25 additional rental units.
Mr. Dusendang has prepared a report that illustrates the current construction progress,
lease-up status, and percent of Muskegon County AMI each unit’s occupier represents.
For the sake of privacy, the incomes and are anonymized and the addresses are not
printed with the associated household. West Urban is proposing to continue the
arrangement as described in the original agreement by proceeding with 25 additional
builds on pre-approved city owned lots.
Dave Dusendang, Owner of West Urban Properties, provided an update to the
Commission regarding the 25 homes he has already built and is seeking Commission
approval to move forward with another 25 homes. Discussion took place regarding the
development. This item will appear on the October 12, 2021 regular meeting agenda for
Public Comment – No public comments were received.
Adjournment – The Worksession meeting adjourned at 8:12 p.m.
Kimberly Young, Deputy City Clerk