A decline in manufacturing led to a change in focus for downtown Muskegon, and in the 1970s, a covered urban mall was built to anchor the new direction. However, the advent of suburban malls was not far behind and in 2001, the downtown Muskegon mall was closed and torn down, leaving a massive vacant property available for developers. Together with the Paul C. Johnson Foundation and the Muskegon Area Chamber of Commerce, we formed the Downtown Muskegon Development Corporation (DMDC) and bought the mall property. After extensive collaboration and community input, external and internal resources were leveraged to get the project started.
During the past 17 years, projects totaling over $123 million have infused new life into the blossoming downtown Muskegon area. We remain committed to downtown Muskegon redevelopment activities. Our staff serves on the Downtown Muskegon Development Corporation and Downtown Muskegon Now advisory boards. We support continuing redevelopment initiatives with grant funding and program-related investments, including our annual operating investment in the Frauenthal Center—a historic cornerstone of downtown Muskegon.
Learn more about the Foundation’s role in downtown redevelopment through impact investing in this video featuring Gary Post of Port City Construction and Development Services.
Updated October 2016