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Council to consider ballot measure for MSUFCU 5 to 8 story innovation space

November 26, 2019
Rendering of the proposed MSUFCU branch and innovation building. COURTESY OF CITY OF EAST LANSING
Rendering of the proposed MSUFCU branch and innovation building. COURTESY OF CITY OF EAST LANSING —

The East Lansing City Council will consider selling city-owned land to the Michigan State University Federal Credit Union for a five to eight story branch innovation space at their Dec. 3 meeting.

The city is seeking permission to sell about 13,000 square feet of land at the northwest corner of the intersection of Albert Avenue and Abbot Road.

The proposed building is and would serve as a branch and innovation space. If approved by the MSUFCU Board of Directors and City Council, the proposal would be placed on the Presidential Primary Election ballot, March 10, 2020.

“The Credit Union has maintained a branch office in downtown East Lansing for decades and we had always hoped to be able to increase our footprint in the core business district," said April Clobes, the MSUFCU president in a statement.

Clobes said the building would also include a community gathering space.

East Lansing City Council member Lisa Babcock said she heard a lot of residents concerned about backroom deals when she was campaigning prior to the Nov. 5 election. She said she'd make sure that isn't the case here.

"This could be a great project for East Lansing," Babcock said. "But I want to be sure that from the public's perspective, it's done right and we get full value for the land and that we do it legally."

City officials say they are excited about the opportunity to expand the workforce downtown.

Tom Fehrenbach, director of the East Lansing Department of Planning, Building and Development said the project could help the city's effort of keeping talented MSU graduates in the city.

“This proposed project would further diversify and increase the number of office users in our downtown, which is consistent with City Council’s policies and the City’s Master Plan,” East Lansing City Manager George Lahanas said.

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