Planning, Economic Development, and Community Development Offices Moving to 245 N Rose

 

Planning, Economic Development, and Community Development Offices to Relocate Starting Wednesday, November 6

New Offices at 245 N. Rose Street Will Open Tuesday, November 12. All City Offices are closed on Monday, November 11 for the observance of Veteran’s Day.

 

The City of Kalamazoo’s Planning, Economic Development, and Community Development offices will be relocating to downtown Kalamazoo starting Wednesday, November 6. New offices will open at 245 N Rose Street Suite 100 on Tuesday, November 12.

The remaining divisions of Community Planning & Economic Development (Permitting, Code Administration, and Rental Registration) will move to the new location December 18. The Public Services personnel located at the Stockbridge Avenue facility will remain.

All phone numbers will remain the same, and city staff in these divisions will continue to be available to assist residents during the move.

Visitor parking is available at the new office location at the Arcadia Parking Ramp on Eleanor Street, on street surrounding the new address, and the Radisson Hotel Parking Ramp. A map of public parking downtown is available here.

This move is part of an effort to better utilize and maintain facilities owned by the City of Kalamazoo. A facilities study completed in 2019 examined all city-owned facilities, considering current and future needs for each city department, facility condition, and the most optimal way to utilize space. The study revealed that more space and rehabilitation were needed at the city’s 415 Stockbridge Avenue facility, which is shared by the Community Planning & Economic Development (CPED) and Public Services departments. Following the move of CPED offices, rehabilitation work will take place at the Stockbridge facility that would not be possible with staff present.

After considering cost, location, networking requirements, parking, and customer convenience, 245 N Rose Street was selected as the best option. The City Commission approved a five-year lease on August 19. Within the next five years, the Kalamazoo County District Court is expected to vacate the space that it leases at the City’s Crosstown Parkway facility, which may become the permanent location for CPED and other city offices. 

 

 

Ribbon Cutting Celebrates FFE-supported Improvements at Neighborhood Business

 

A ribbon cutting was held October 28 to celebrate recent improvements at Ennovy's Beauty Bar, a neighborhood business located in the Northside Neighborhood. The business was able to make needed investments in its building with support from the City of Kalamazoo’s Business Development Fund.

Ennovy’s Beauty Bar is a full-service salon and spa, offering one stop service to families including hair, nails, and skin care. The three-year-old business is owned by Ricky and Yvonne Thrash, both lifelong Kalamazoo residents and Kalamazoo Public Schools graduates.

Ennovy’s was the recipient of a $25,000 small business loan through the Foundation for Excellence-supported Business Development Fund. Mr. and Mrs. Thrash used the funds to make improvements to their building, cleaning and washing the exterior and repairing or replacing windows, fascia board, soffit, gutters and downspouts, and making repairs to their parking lot.

The couple also benefitted from a $2,500 grant to install fire suppression in a food truck business they also own. 

“There is great entrepreneurial spirit in Kalamazoo’s neighborhoods,” noted Dwayne Powell, Jr., the City of Kalamazoo’s Neighborhood Business & Special Projects Coordinator, “and thanks to the support of the Foundation for Excellence, we are investing in these ideas and empowering neighborhood residents to start and grow their businesses.”

Mr. and Mrs. Thrash are also planning to redevelop a portion of their property to create an outdoor café.

“We are planning to have a grand opening in spring 2020, creating job opportunities for community residents and offering good eating and ambiance,” said Mr. Thrash.

The Business Development Fund is a non-traditional lending program funded by the Foundation for Excellence that makes capital available to developing businesses on agreeable terms. Low or no-interest loans up to $35,000 are available to support locally-owned startups and small business expansion. For more information about BDF loans or any of the City of Kalamazoo business support programs, please contact Dwayne Powell, Jr.

About the Foundation for Excellence

The Foundation for Excellence was created in 2016 to help address challenges to the prosperity of the city and help make Kalamazoo the most dynamic, fulfilling and equitable place that it can be.

The FFE provides funds to stabilize the City’s budget, lower the property tax rate, and invest in aspirational community projects and programs. FFE funds support programs and projects of City departments, such as Public Services, Community Planning and Economic Development, and Parks and Recreation. Their work is often conducted in partnerships with external organizations whose missions align with the goals of the City. 

 

Public Safety Application Period Opens October 30

UPDATE: The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety has decided to extend the application period for its current hiring process for “Public Safety Officer” until Monday November 18, 2019 at 8:00 a.m.

KDPS will open up the application process for the position of “Public Safety Officer” on Oct. 30, 2019 and it will remain open until 11:59 p.m. on Nov. 15, 2019. The application process consists of an application, a written test, a background packet, physical agility test, and several interviews throughout the process. Once these steps are complete, it is anticipated that an offer of employment would be given in May, 2020.

Applications may be submitted between 10/30/19 through 11/15/19 at the following websites:

https://www.governmentjobs.com/careers/kalamazoomi
www.kalamazoopublicsafety.org

To be considered, applicants must be a U.S. citizen and have a High School Diploma or GED equivalent, a valid driver’s license, and be 21 years old at time of appointment (May, 2020). Applicants will also be required to pass a written and physical test and an extensive background investigation. Applicants are not required to be MCOLES (police) certified to apply. Kalamazoo Public Safety officers are cross-trained as police officers, firefighters, and medical first responders. They respond to calls for police, fire, and medical emergencies, along with performing other duties. Applicants do not need to have prior police or fire certifications to be considered as KDPS will sponsor them through the police academy and provide fire training, if needed. A training wage may apply to those who need to attend the Police Academy. Additional benefits include a Spanish language bonus, veteran on-the-job training education benefits and the federal direct student loan forgiveness program.

Advancement/additional opportunities include: Detective, Canine Handler, Community Policing Officer, Narcotics Investigator, Crime Lab Technician, SWAT Team, Bomb Squad, Honor Guard, and Command Officer.

Information about KDPS is available at www.kalamazoopublicsafety.org and questions can be submitted through the “Contact” link at the top of the Home Page.

City of Kalamazoo

Home to the Kalamazoo Promise, three institutions of higher education, two nationally recognized healthcare systems, cutting-edge medical research, world-class brewing and dining, outstanding parks, and an extensive variety of music, art, theatre, and cultural attractions.

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 (269) 337-8182
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     Kalamazoo, MI 49007

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