Archive for Thursday, March 24, 2005

Towne Center movement

March 24, 2005

Those who have grown anxious to see movement on Towne Center can breathe easier with this week's announcement of the first tenant in the development.

MidAmerican Bank, which now operates a branch in the Wood Oil center at 109 4-H Road, is moving across the street to Towne Center. There, it will build a full-service bank building with either additional office space or retail space for lease.

The bank hopes to move into the new building by January 2006.

City officials greeted the announcement with praise; so too should Lansing residents who have been wondering when something would happen on the land where so much effort has been invested.

There are those who are still skeptical that anything will ever come of the rest of Towne Center, which the city envisions as one day becoming its Central Business District, or a replacement for the downtown area that was destroyed years ago with development of a highway.

Marvin "Pete" Payne thinks differently. He's the president of MidAmerican, and he's certain his bank's announcement that it's locating in Towne Center will be only the first of many.

"It's going to develop, there's no doubt in my mind," Payne said in an interview.

He also dismissed talk that Towne Center was taking too long to develop.

"It takes time," Payne said. "I would say it's not behind schedule in development."

Here's to hoping he's right and that Towne Center will fulfill the city's dreams.

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