HOLLAND — Several companies have expressed interest in developing land on the city of Holland’s Lake Macatawa waterfront, made available by the closure of the James De Young power plant site.
The city put out a call for developers to submit their qualifications earlier this year, looking for a firm to either redevelop the power plant site or waterfront land south of the power plant site owned by Verplank Dock Co. and Padnos Recycling. Verplank or Padnos would relocate operations to the power plant site in that scenario.
Holland City Council heard a report from their consultants Hitchcock Design Group and SB Friedman, who have been facilitating the request for qualifications and request for proposals process, during the council’s study session Aug. 25.
The three developers who responded to the request for qualifications are St. Joseph-based Edgewater Resources, Holland-based Geenen DeKock Properties and South Bend-based Great Lakes Capital.
Each developer was vetted by the city’s consultants and will be invited next to submit detailed proposals, including site plans and financials, by a January deadline.
They will be evaluated for compatibility with the Waterfront Holland vision that was developed through a public brainstorming process.
Edgewater Resources, which specializes in marina and waterfront developments, has proposed a mixed-use development on the Verplank Dock Co. land, though Edgewater also expressed interest in the JDY site if a land swap cannot be negotiated.
The preliminary plans include residential, retail and commercial space and a “Netherlands-style canal” with boat docking along the canal.
GDK, a local development and construction company, is also looking at using the Verplank Dock Co. site for a mixed-use development including residential, hotel, marina, restaurant and cruise ship docking.
Developers proposing a land swap with Verplank and the JDY power plant site will have to negotiate the deal and have a purchase agreement ready to present to the city by early next year.
Great Lakes Capital is proposing an arts and cultural center at the JDY power plant site with a hotel, convention center and performance venue, and a public marina and cruise ship docking along the water.
“We’re very excited to reach this point in the Waterfront Holland process,” said Holland City Manager Keith Van Beek.
“We’ve been very focused on qualifications up until now,” said Fran Lefor Rood, senior vice president of SB Friedman Development Advisors.
“Going forward, we’re going to get more into the details of what is actually being proposed on which site and the mechanics of what the projects would look like and then what the financial side of these deals would look like, as well.”
Any plan will eventually have to be brought to the residents of Holland for a vote to approve the sale of the JDY land.