Economic Development

The vision of the Muskegon Lakeshore is brighter than ever. The vision is to create a model waterfront community where all people may prosper in a healthy environment. This vision is a product of the Muskegon Area-Wide Plan; many organizations were involved including the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce, Muskegon Area First, the local units of government, and the West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission.

Grand Valley State University



Muskegon County
is known for its diverse, entrepreneur-driven economy as a global leader in advanced manufacturing with specialization in metal, plastics, alternative energy, and agricultural products, a popular Midwest waterfront destination for year-round tourism, culture, and recreational activities as well as a destination for residential living and retirement. Muskegon is the regional lakeshore center for affordable, quality health care in basic and specialty services, retail services and life-long learning with emphasis in workforce training, early childhood through higher level adult education, and private and public research.


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INVESTING IN MUSKEGON

It's a great time to invest in the Muskegon Lakeshore. Manufacturing expansion and attraction projects are managed by Muskegon Area First, the county's economic development corporation. They will assist in site selection for any project resulting in capital investment and job creation. They are located in the Hines Building along with the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce and other business service organizations. 


INVESTING IN DOWNTOWN 

It's a great time to invest in the Muskegon's beautiful downtown as it continues to grow and thrive. Making the necessary public and private investments in downtown creates an environment that spurs larger regional investments. These dollars are returned to the community many times over through higher property values, new jobs, new residents and renewed civic pride. Click here for more reasons of why downtown's are so important. Downtown Muskegon Now can assist you with your downtown investment. Contact Director Andrew Haan at 231-724-3180.


SMALL BUSINESS ASSISTANCE

We are excited you are considering the Muskegon Lakeshore for your business location.  This may be a once in a life time opportunity and we want to help you do everything on time and on budget.  It is important for you to know that opening a storefront, office or any business facility is not like buying or renting a house.  The process is much more complex whether you plan to build, expand, buy or lease. 

Location considerations include real estate, zoning ordinances, parking and signage, market research, taxes and utilities and transportation. Weather you are building or buying, keep in mind the cost for building, fire, electrical, and pluming inspections.  Also, be sure to obtain any State or local permits required for building or certifications are available as well, such as the LEED certification through the US Green Building Counsel.

The community is here to help.  Contact your local municipality today for more information.

It is important to do your research before you sign any contract.  Fees can range from $25 dollars to $30,000 dollars for items critical to your operation. Those costs need to be built into the project budget to ensure a successful opening. Also architects, attorneys, builders and engineers will often offer you one free hour of consultation for your project.  For a fee, some of these companies will manage the entire process for you.  Some may only offer specific services.  You will need to have a clear understanding about what services are being provided and for what fees. Click here to find a developer, architect, engineer, financial advisor or institution that meets your needs. 

Since every industry is different and may be governed by different regulations, it may be wise to schedule an appointment with SCORE or an SBA counselor.  In Muskegon County free counseling is offered Monday through Friday at the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce office.  For an appointment call 231-722-3751.


BUY LOCAL. THINK GLOBAL. 

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As Muskegon transitions into the global economy, it is important we support the local businesses that provide local employment, tax revenue and the goods and services we need.  Where we spend money does matter!

Spend a dollar at a local business, and it will circulate in our community more often and more quickly than if we spend that dollar at a non-local business - up to six times more.

This means your friends, neighbors and associates:

  • Receieve a regular paycheck
  • Pay their bills on time
  • Purchase goods & services from other local businesses
  • Create a more prosperous Lakeshore community

When all 178,000 residents in Muskegon County spend $100 at locally-owned businesses... it returns $10.5 million back into the local economy!
                                                                                                                                                      
Click here for local purchasing guidelines.
 |  Click here to find a local business.    

 


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