All the news that is news for the month of September from the Directors Report at the DDA Board Meeting and beyond….
Downtown Business Updates
- Pumachug, 1 S. Main, received their Certificate of Occupancy and opened to the public on Sept. 4 after a few days of soft opening
- Vacation of the alley between Clawson Center Lofts (new townhome development) and NOAR Technologies, 303 E. 14 Mile, was approved by City Council. The curbed alley space will be divided between both property owners and landscaping will be added as part of the townhome development.
- Broadway Square (ACE Development) have completed the removal of the lease spaces on the north end of the ACE building and plan to begin work in the next few weeks on underground utilities
- Downtown Charlie’s is opened for breakfast and lunch at 236 S. Main on Saturday, September 19. This was formerly the Fritatta location.
- New signage has been installed on the façade of Tavern on the Main, 235 S. Main
- Biland & Cashmere, 50 N. Main, has installed signage on the façade and plan to add a projecting sign
- Site Plans were approved by the Planning Commission for 133 W. 14 Mile, former Fougnie Floral.
- Site plans have been submitted for the vacant parcel soon to be the extended parking area at Three Cats
- Old Port, 278 E. 14 Mile, has added outdoor seating with two tables near the restaurant entrance
- Sabbath Coffee Roasters, 24 E.14 Mile, is now roasting beans and plans to open for sales in mid to late October
- The Wiess Distilling Company project continues to move forward at 34 E. 14 Mile. The ground will begin to be prepped at the beginning of October to prepare for construction of the new building.
Alley update; City Manager Mike Smith has requested the DPW obtain updated a quote to remove the concrete and also to address water drainage. He has contacted AT&T regarding removal of the utility pole as a safety concern. Once the ground surface and water drainage have been addressed the install of the DDA’s steel archway can be considered along with other pedestrian improvements.
Marijuana update; It was suggested at the last meeting that a DDA sub-committee be formed. I’ve spoken with the City Planner and they will work with the City Attorney on a white paper so the committee has a baseline of information.
Zoning update; The Planning Commission reviewed the zoning language without objection. The City Planner is now creating a map identifying every parcel and its zoning to review with the DDA as the next step in the process to adopt the three zoning areas identified in the Downtown Master Plan
Documentary update; The Board Chair and Director were interviewed back in May for a documentary series for PBS on the impact of COVID-19 on small business. The first segment in the series aired in early August and the second in the series aired this month. Both were placed on our Facebook page.
Segment One: https://www.onedetroitpbs.org/clawson-one-city-under-a-pandemic/
Segment Two: https://www.facebook.com/onedetroit/videos/241416433871115/
A request was sent to City Administration to consider a moratorium on food trucks in the DDA except as part of a special event. The intent was to support local businesses especially as our restaurants are struggling with COVID restrictions of 50% occupancy. This item was on the September 15 Council Agenda where Councilperson Kathy Phillips entered the motion. Councilperson Lou Samson abstained as his son owns a downtown business. The motion did not receive a support from Councilpersons Paula Milan or Sue Moffit so the motion died without a vote.
A Fall Harvest event is being considered for October using the same strolling format as the August Open Air Sidewalk Fair.
The DDA applied for and received a grant from Flagstar Bank as part of a Main Street Oakland County. This is a placemaking grant for public art Silhouettes in the amount of $5,000 which is a matching grant.
The DDA adopted new workplans for the current fiscal year. Among the projects included in the workplans are the following:
Competing the process to adopt the TIF and Development Plan update. Scheduling of a public hearing and notification to all taxing authorities in the TIF are the final steps.
Implementation of the Fundraising Plan which, in part, invites residents and other businesses to be part of a Downtown Neighbors program
Design has a full plate with preparing new public art installations, new banners and landscaping maintenance on their agenda
To assist with marketing a Downtown Clawson website refresh is on the workplan
The workplan calls for a continuation of downtown events or a re-imagining of events if COVID restrictions remain in place.