| Follow Us:

Westside : Development News

96 Westside Articles | Page: | Show All

Construction underway for area's first Toby Keith bar and grill

Southern home-cooked fare, a country music atmosphere and live music from area bands set the stage for one of Lansing's newest dining attractions as Toby Keith's I Love This Bar & Grill comes to Delta Township this fall.
The Lansing Mall announced March 18th that the venue named for the 2003 hit single "I Love This Bar" will occupy an 18,000-square foot space now under construction near the Regal Cinemas.
Vice President of Marketing Melissa Heanue of Rouse Properties, which owns the Lansing Mall, believes the energetic and entertaining blend of music and food will make for a great lunch or night out. She says the Toby Keith's "new home" will add to the already high-profile lineup of Lansing Mall dining options that include the newly opened Longhorn Steakhouse and the upcoming Nestle Toll House Café.
"This is a unique destination tenant that enhances both our dining and entertainment offering," says Heanue in a prepared statement. "We believe it will serve as major attraction within the Greater Lansing area."
The restaurant will feature an 85-foot full-service bar in the shape of guitar, a stage for live entertainment, a dance floor, a glass-enclosed VIP room, two indoor 'barns" for private parties and corporate events. Notable menu items include pulled-pork sandwiches, meatloaf, fried bologna sandwiches and Southern fried Twinkies.
Toby Keith's boasts 15 U.S. locations, with five coming soon. The Lansing location will be the second in Michigan behind Auburn Hills.
Source: Melissa Heanue, Vice President of Marketing, Rouse Properties
Writer: Ann Kammerer, Development News Editor

Indoor Grow Store opens superstore, hires 14 employees in rapid expansion

For Alex Manuel, business is growing.
In July 2013, Manuel opened his first Indoor Grow Store on S. Cedar Street in Lansing. Then, a little more than a half year later, he opened his second Lansing area store at 3800 W. Saginaw Highway—one that is three times as large as the first.
"Six months from now, we'll be having this same interview," says Manuel, when asked about his new superstore that plots 6,000 square feet. "We are going to open up a store in every city in Michigan."
Manuel is driven to make the process of growing plants indoors simpler and less expensive, and says he discounts everything in his store by 40 to 50 percent. His stores carry most everything an indoor gardening enthusiast needs, including lighting, trays, soils, mediums, nutrients, and specialty tools and accessories.
Manuel's most prized retail item is very own magic trimmer—a patented hand-held device that speeds the trimming and harvesting of indoor plants.
"I'm a good farmer," says Manuel, who hails from Greece. "I farmed in my old country and here in Michigan and California. My father and grandfather and his father were farmers. I can give you the best things for your garden."
Manuel says he gave up farming because of age and because he is working on his stores. He invested about $200,000 to remodel the previous Shop-Rite grocery store on the corner of Waverly and Saginaw streets, and runs the shop with a staff of 14, including his son.
Source: Alex Manuel, Owner, The Indoor Grow Store
Writer: Ann Kammerer, Development News Editor

Ciena Healthcare Management expands footprint of Delta facility, adds 30 more jobs

Plans for a new rehabilitation facility in Delta Township have grown in scope after an enthusiastic reception prompted the health care company to take a second look.
Southfield-based Ciena Healthcare Management is expanding the blueprint of the 78,000-square-foot Regency at Lansing West by several thousand feet to accommodate 120 beds—up 20 from the 100 announced at the December 2013 groundbreaking. The increase, says CEO Mohammad Qazi, adds $1 million to the $9.1 million investment, as well as 30 more full-time jobs.
"We're also excited that we're creating construction jobs during the building phase," says Qazi, who estimates the now 150 full-time staff jobs will bring about $6 million in salaries to the local economy. "The community response has been very positive. We're anxious to get open."
Regency at Lansing West is the first Ciena facility in mid-Michigan and joins a network of 34 other company-run centers in the state. The facility will be located on Broadbent Road off Interstate 96 and is slated to open in fall 2014.
The single story building will feature private and semi-private rooms, common areas, a restaurant with chef-prepared food, and a library, lounge and salon. Regency at Lansing West, Qazi says, is a departure from older health and rehab facilities built in the '60s and '70s, and mirrors the "medical hospitality model" in which customers are regarded as guests, not patients.
"Most of the guests we will have will be coming direct from the hospital for a couple weeks of rehabilitation, and will range in age from 60 to 70," he says. "Since we are looking to meet the needs and expectations of a relatively younger population, this will be a very different environment, with lots of amenities."
Source: Mohammad Qazi, president, Ciena Healthcare
Writer: Ann Kammerer, Development News Editor

Students climb toward new careers at Lansing Community College

The demand for line workers is climbing, and Lansing Community College is poised to help students reach new heights through a growing Electrical Utility Lineworker Program.
"I've heard figures from a local utility company that half of their line workers will retire in the next three years," says Matt Dunham, program director for the Utility and Energy Systems Program at LCC.
Dunham says about 53,000 jobs are projected to open up nationally for line workers before 2020, with median salaries of more than $63,000. In Michigan, about 100 or more jobs are expected to be available in 2014. The need for skilled line workers has bubbled up even more after record-breaking ice and snowstorms in early winter tested the response times of mid-Michigan utilities.
Last summer, LCC doubled the size of its line worker training program by opening the six-acre, $2.1 million Great Lakes Center for Utility Training with support from the Board of Water & Light. Three adjunct instructors were hired in 2013 and one in 2012 to facilitate training.
Since 2008, the LCC's line worker program has trained and certified more than 60 people through a school to work partnership with Consumers Energy. About 50 percent of those graduates have gone on to work at the utility, while others have secured employment through contractors associated with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The college also partners with the Lansing Board of Water & Light to provide classroom training for 12 occupational apprenticeships at the municipal utility.
Students interested in learning more about LCC's selective admissions program for utility line workers should attend one of three information sessions on Feb. 5, Feb. 17 or March 13. Further information is also available on the program website.
Source: Matthew Dunham, program director, LCC Utility and Energy Systems Program
Writer: Ann Kammerer, Development News Editor

Zaytoon Grill to bring well-known family recipes with an American fusion twist to the Westside

With the long-running Sultan's Restaurant and new Saffron Grill in East Lansing, the local market's love of the Samy Aburashed's family businesses has been tried and tested. This week, fans of Mediterranean cuisine will have another option with Aburashed's Zaytoon Grill opening on Elmwood Rd. near the Lansing Mall. 
"I've been looking for the last two years on the west side," says owner Samy Aburashed, who is nephew to the owner of Sultan's Restaurant. "There really isn't anything authentic out there."
Zaytoon Grill will begin with a soft opening this Saturday and will be fully open by Monday. Aburashed says the menu will have similar recipes to his family's well- known cuisine, but with a twist. 
"There will be a little modern touch to mine," he says. "I'm not scared to use a little more spice. It'll be a little different, with an American fusion to it." 
The 2,800 square foot restaurant will open with seating for 50 and about 10 employees. Aburashed says he hopes to expand in the future, looking to increase the size of the restaurant, and perhaps add a banquet facility and bakery to the business. 

Source: Samy Aburashed, Zaytoon Grill
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

Bordeaux serves up fine wines, local foods at the Crowne Plaza Lansing West

The dining room transformation inside the Crowne Plaza Lansing West was something more than a renovation; it's a whole new restaurant. Serving fine wines and made-from-scratch dishes, Bordeaux is the result of the hotel's desire to give their guests the Michigan experience they were looking for. 
"The more we listened, the more we heard the desire for an elevated dining experience on the west side of Lansing," says April Fitzsimmons, marketing coordinator for the Crowne Plaza. "It was also important for us to feature elements unique to our home state, such as Michigan wines and microbrews and the Timeless Timber used in the construction of our bar." 
The renovation touched nearly every surface of the hotel's restaurant space, including features by those more than 100-year-old Timeless Timber logs, which were recovered from the Great Lakes. The restaurant includes private dining rooms, named for various wine regions, as well as the Cork Room with more than 70 wine options, including, of course, Bordeaux.
While already receiving positive feedback from guests, Fitzsimmons says the menu will continue to evolve with the seasons and tastes of the guests. 
"Chef [Bradley] Lineweaver plans to transform the menu from time to time throughout the year, with the goal of keeping it fresh and creative," she says. "As he continues building relationships with in-state vendors, more and more locally sourced ingredients will make their way into his dishes."
Bordeaux plans to soon offer pre-order options for guests on the go. The restaurant employs a staff of 30. 
Source: April Fitzsimmons, Crowne Plaza Lansing West
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

CASE Credit Union celebrates opening of sixth Lansing location

CASE Credit Union just won't seem to stop growing. The local organization celebrated the opening of its second Delta Twp. location on Oct. 16. The new branch brings the sixth branch to the Capital region.
"Our membership is up nearly 2,000 members, and our loan portfolio has grown by over 85 million dollars so far in 2013," says CASE Credit Union's Sara Walker. "We wanted to expand our footprint in Delta Township to better serve our members in that area, as well as all of the great retail businesses in that corridor."
The W. Saginaw location across from the Lansing Mall was chosen for its high levels of traffic. The new branch was designed with the assistance of renowned financial institution architects Daniels and Zermack Architects. The approximately 5,500 square foot building was created as a modern take on a credit union branch. Features include exposed steel beams in the lobby, exterior LED lights, vaulted ceilings with clerestory windows and arched canopies. 
"The building serves as a highlight of innovative architecture on W. Saginaw Hwy.," Walker says. "The added Community Room, equipped with all of the latest technologies, creates an additional space for Credit Union events and gatherings."
The new CASE Credit Union employs a staff of eight and is expected to open for business by the end of Oct.

Source: Sara Walker, CASE Credit Union
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

New westside Soldan's opens with new name, logo

A local familiar name in local pet supplies is unveiling some big changes. Soldan's Feeds and Pet Supplies is now open in its new W. Saginaw location under the shorter name Soldan's Pet Supplies, which will soon make its way onto all eight Soldan's stores. 
"We're changing our logo too," says Nikki Soldan, floor supervisor for the westside Soldan's. "We've done less and less with horse feed, so we're dropping the horse and adding a rabbit."
Perhaps the most dramatic change is Soldan's new westside home. Though not far from their former location near Best Buy, the new, larger space at 6201 W. Saginaw gives the pet supply store more visibility and more room for some new features, including a self-serve dog wash and shorter, more customer-friendly shelving. 
"With the shelves just five feet high, you can see across the whole store," says Soldan. "It opens everything up more so it's more inviting. Eventually, I think they're going to start doing this in all eight stores. We're sort of a guinea pig." 
The new Soldan's Pet Supplies location opened today after several months of preparation at the new site. The new store will offer expanded food and toy lines, and Soldan hopes the increased traffic will lead to an increase in their staff. Now employing eight to ten employees, if the westside location can meets their expectations, Soldan expects two to four more jobs could be created in the new store. 

Source: Nikki Soldan, Soldan's Pet Supply
Writer: Natalie Burg

LLB Asian Grocery brings specialty foods to Delta Twp.

Joseph and Vina Nguyen have been small business owners in the Lansing area for more than a decade, and they always knew something was missing from Lansing's west side. 

"We looked around and we saw on this side of town we didn't have any Asian specialty stores," says Joseph Nguyen. "My wife thought it would be conventient for all of the people around here." 

After four to five months of renovations, the Nguyens solves that problem by opening LLB Asian Grocery at 4221 W. Saginaw. Nguyen says the location was perfect for the new market because of its size and the amount of traffic that passes by every day. The store opened on Aug. 25.

"We doing okay," says Nguyen. "We are still getting people who are noticing us for the first time."

LLB Asian Grocery carries a variety of specialty Asian foods not found in other area stores, such as noodles, mainades, sauces, fish and spices. The 3,200 square foot store is staffed by five members of the Nguyen family. In the next five years, they hope to expand the store into a larger space. 

Source: Joseph Nguyen, LLB Asian Grocery
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

Indoor Grow Store opens first of two stores, creates 13 jobs

Some people put up with the things that aggravate them; others just change them. Alex Manuel is among the latter, and the result has been a new invention, one new retail store, another in the works and plans to grow his business all over the state. 
The Indoor Grow Store opened two months ago on S. Cedar, and it all began with Manuel's desire to make the process of indoor growing better. When growing the indoor plants, he was dissatisfied with the local prices of supplies, as well as the devices available to trim the plants. 
"I bought a machine and it was nothing. It was bad," says Manuel. "I invented my own trimmer. It’s the best in the country." 
To solve the problem of the steep prices on local growing supplies, he then opened his own store. Manuel says his prices at the 2,000 square foot South Lansing store are lower, not only than other stores, but also most online stores. 
Manuel will open second, larger Indoor Grow Store near the Lansing Mall in six to eight weeks. After that, he says, the sky is the limit for expansion.
"We are planning to have a store in every city in Michigan," says Manuel. "If I stay healthy, we are going to expand as much as we can."
The current Indoor Grow Store employs a staff of five. The forthcoming store will employ seven to eight workers and will be in a 5,800 square foot location.

Source: Alex Manuel
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

New Teen Zone gives Ele's Place teens a place to interact and heal

As anyone who knows a teenager knows, teens like to have their own space to hang out. Thanks to four years of hard work and $75,000 worth of donations and volunteer labor, Ele's Place can now offer their teens exactly that. 
"It's very exciting. Our teens are thrilled," says Managing Director of Lansing's Ele's Place Lori Bosch, "They can't wait to get in there and get going on some hands on the activities."
Ele's Place celebrated a ribbon cutting on their new Teen Zone yesterday, unveiling a renovated space in the lower level of their W. Oakland Ave. facility where teens can interact, role play, use technology-based communications and express themselves through art and music. 
"All of those physical experiences, gives them a way to express themselves with other teens who understand what they're going through," says Bosch. "They form strong relationships and trust while they're interacting together."
Though space for these types of activities had been previously available for younger children, the healing center for grieving kids has been working for years to create the same environment for teens. Bosch says the renovation was a true community effort with donated labor and a generous cash donation from Celink. 
Ele's Place is always looking for more volunteers, and those interested may contact the organization for information on volunteer training. 

Source: Lori Bosch, Ele's Place
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

Phantom Fireworks opens with a bang in Delta Twp.

When the fireworks laws changed in Michigan, one of the largest fireworks retailers in the country took notice. That led to Phantom Fireworks opening on W. Saginaw in Delta Twp. in May. 
"Phantom Fireworks has been in business for over 30 years, and we just thought it was time to make our way into Michigan," says Josh Rains, manager of the Lansing location.
With more than 60 permanent locations in the country, Phantom Fireworks knows its stuff. The staff specializes in safety, and offers training to customers on the proper way to light each firework. The Lansing location opened just in time for their peak season. 
"It's been great," Rains says of business since the store opened. "It was pretty crazy in here, which was anticipated. July is our Christmas." 
Phantom Fireworks employs a staff of three year-round and grows to about 20 during the holiday season. Rains says the high traffic location near the Lansing Mall and other prominent area businesses has been key to their success.

Source: Josh Rains, Phantom Fireworks
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

Piggee's Smokehouse and BBQ brings home cooking to W. Saginaw

There's good news for fan's of Uncle Larry's BBQ, formerly of Downtown Lansing. Owner Larry Piggee has taken his talents to W. Saginaw, opening  Piggee's Smokehouse and BBQ last week in the former Turkeyman location. 
The 1,500 square foot restaurant serves the kind of homemade cooking Piggee learned from his parents and grandmother growing up. The barbeque recipes come from him father, and he credits his mother for teaching him about his delicious sides. 
"I've been cooking. I've been in kitchens since I was child," says Piggee. "My mother and grandmother always had me help the out."
In addition to his barbequed meets. Piggee offers mac and cheese, bacon cheddar salads, red beans and rice, and blueberry applesauce, with new rotating sides every week.
Piggee has been working to develop Piggee's Smokehouse and BBQ since April. He currently offers dine-in service and catering, and hopes to soon offer delivery as well. The new restaurant employs a staff of four. 

Source: Larry Piggee, Piggee's Smokehouse & BBQ
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

Black Box Tattoos brings creative energy, three jobs to Delta Twp.

When the only tattoo shop on Lansing's west side closed several months ago, local tattoo artist Troy Albert saw an opportunity to fill the void. He opened Black Box Tattoo Studio in a 1,600 square foot W. Saginaw space in April. 
"On this side of town there was only studio for a long time," says Albert. "After they closed up it was an opportunity to step into a place and raise the standard of the tattoos around here."
Albert's interest in his current career grew from his love of art, and he found his way to tattooing as a way to create a sustainable job in the arts. 
"There aren't too many job opportunities out there for artists," Albert says. "A lot of people do street art and murals and just have to be the starving artist. With tattooing, it's a good job where you can show your creativity and be who you are while doing it." 
Black Box Tattoo Studio employs three tattoo artists, and Albert says the staff's attention to detail and care paid to each customer sets the business apart. 
"We try to raise the bar," says Albert. "We really want to work with the customers, so they're very happy. We don’t like to rush tattoos."
Albert encourages people to visit the shop even if they're unsure about getting a tattoo, as he and his staff are happy to answer questions and talk about ideas. Examples of their work can be seen on the Black Box Tattoo Facebook page

Source: Troy Albert, Black Box Tattoo
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor

Embassy Grill to triple size and staff with new W. Saginaw location

After four years in their current W. Saginaw location, the Embassy Grill is on the move. Though the new home won't be far – just three blocks down W. Saginaw to the Lansing Towne Center – the 4,000 square foot location will triple their dining capacity, as well as their staff. 
"We're hoping for more traffic," says General Manager Rick Badawi. "We're tucked into a corner here, but we'll be able to seat more than 140 there."
Work on the new Embassy Grill location has been underway since late 2012. The conversion will fairly dramatic to the former retail space that is now on it's way ot becoming a restaurant. Badawi says the atmosphere will echo the business' current look, but with the addition of patio seating and a separation between the dining and bar areas. 
The Embassy Grill specializes in Lebanese, Italian and American dining, though Badawi says their Lebanese food has become a particular favorite to their clientele. They hope the larger, more visible new location will bring even more new diners to the restaurant. 
The new Embassy Grill location is slated to open in June. With the expansion into the new space, Badawi expect to grow his staff from six to up to 20. 

Source: Rick Badawi, The Embassy Grill
Writer: Natalie Burg, Development News Editor
96 Westside Articles | Page: | Show All
Share this page
Signup for Email Alerts