Macomb County ready to incentivize your business growth

Summit Plastic Molding breaks ground in Bruce Township

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It was a sunny November day, the best you could hope for, when Summit Plastic Molding held an outdoor groundbreaking ceremony in front of the crowd in attendance and the local media. The buzz was for a brand-new facility that would employ 80 people in Bruce Township. It was a day of celebration. For the company. For Bruce Township. And for the employees that will be able to provide for their families. It was a celebration that is the culmination of an effective partnership between the business and the team at the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development.

One of the most important business decisions a company will make is choosing where to locate. Our team of professionals here at the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development have the resources to guide a company through all steps of the process including incentivizing a company’s growth.

These services helped Summit Plastic Molding secure a 12-year tax abatement on their new facility, a 22.41-acre parcel on 33 Mile Road, east of Van Dyke. The overall investment, including new equipment, is expected to be close to $10 million with two additional industrial buildings planned for the future. To secure the abatement, our team assisted with the following:

  • Identified which local and state-level resources were appropriate for the development and fit the criteria of the project and industry.
  • Established an Industrial Development District with the local community for the development site which is a requirement to apply for an abatement.
  • Completed the necessary paperwork required to request an Industrial Facilities Tax Exemption (a tax abatement).
  • Presented with the company to the township board at their local meeting to secure required local approval for the abatement request.

As a result of these services, Summit Plastic Molding’s new 64,200-square-foot building will serve as the company’s new headquarters and manufacturing facility. The building will be a state-of-the-art facility that provides efficiencies in energy, logistics and automation.

The services our economic development team provided Summit Plastic Molding to aid their growth can be utilized to help your business grow as well. Summit Plastic Molding joins a growing list of companies that we have successfully been able to help incentivize growth for in Macomb this year. Others include Amazon, Cabela’s and Grupo Antolin Michigan Inc. You can see who and where we’ve helped on  our interactive GIS map!

If you’re a company thinking about growing or locating in Macomb, reach out to us. We can connect you to resources and programs that can support all aspects of your expansion. We look forward to celebrating your groundbreaking as well!

Posavetz, Nick IMG_0221Nick Posavetz is an economic development specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development and is focused on growing, retaining and attracting businesses to Macomb County. To learn about what resources are available for your business, reach out to him at posavetz@macombgov.org.

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Macomb County meets Montreal at ITS

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It was only four years ago when I travelled to my first Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) World Congress, hosted in Tokyo, Japan. Back then, futurists talked about a world where cars would be driverless and the movement of people and freight will be transformed.

Fast forward to last week, at the ITS World Congress in Montreal, and the concepts of yesterday are disrupting the way we as cities, counties, states and countries use connected technology and big data to change the transportation industry. We are in a unique place in time, at the crosshair where the physical systems (roads, infrastructure, signals and automobiles) are meeting the digital world – and it’s evolving at a rapid pace.

Each year, the ITS World Congress rotates between the European, Asian and North American markets and is a massive gathering for the exchange of ideas and innovation that moves the world. The dominance of mobility technology was prevalent on the showroom floor and on the stage. The message was clear: Michigan is a global leader. Our governor, Rick Snyder, joined the delegation representing Michigan and the leadership at the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) and Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) under a partnership that is branded “Planet M, where big ideas in mobility are born.”

As an economic developer, I see how these concepts in connected technologies are changing the face of Macomb County. Our workforce is evolving, trying to keep pace with the rapid demand of a talent pipeline not yet matured. A traffic engineer will now need skills in software, hardware and cyber physical systems to grow in this industry.

During the conference, I had the opportunity to meet more than 30 students from the US and Canada and talk about next-generation mobility careers in cybersecurity. Organized by Mobile Comply, an ITS training company based in Sterling Heights, the conference allowed these students to travel to Montreal to immerse themselves in cybersecurity scenarios that deploy connected technology. They learned about our initiative, the Michigan Automotive and Defense Cyber Assurance Team (MADCAT) and how to engage our industry partners in these new careers. The pathway for these students has been set into motion.

This year, John Abraham from our ITS team within the Macomb County Department of Roads joined me in Montreal. His vision to make Macomb County a “Connected County” is happening. Today, we have more than 150 miles of connected roadways ready for the early adopters and innovators to bring their technologies to our major thoroughfares and into our vehicles. Centered by our traffic operations center, COMTEC, we have a unique infrastructure in place with more than 220 roadside units ready to test in a live environment. As we met with industry game changers like Hitachi, Siemens and Microsoft, it was clear there are greater opportunities to partner with these technology giants.

In June 2018, ITS America will host its annual conference in Detroit, showcasing our best. Macomb County is ready.

 

Lincoln High School unveils enhanced CAD/CAM program

Our department was privileged to join with county officials, district personal, former students and business leaders at the Lincoln High School Center for Career and Technology in Warren. The gathering was to celebrate new machinery which will enable students to prepare for high-demand careers in manufacturing.

Press Event 087A DMG MORI 5-axis CNC machine, valued at $250,000, was given to Van Dyke Public Schools on a two-year, no cost lease from DMG MORI. Based in Japan with locations across the globe, DMG MORI is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of CNC machines.  The gift will enable students to hone their computer aided drafting (CAD) and computer aided manufacturing (CAM) skills through the school’s career technical education program.

Dr. Masahiko Mori, president of DMG MORI, flew in from Japan to be part of the celebration.  It was obvious from his remarks that he and his company are happy to support educational programs that produced trained and ready individuals to run their machines.

Rick Hecker, President and CEO of Eifel Mold & Engineering of Fraser, chairs the school’s business advisory committee for CAD/CAM. He is credited with securing the donation. When he shared the good news with committee members, others stepped forward to make sure that the equipment would be installed and serviced at no cost to the district:

  • Metro Air Compressor of Roseville offered the necessary air compressor and installed it.
  • Powertran Transformers of Ferndale offered a transformer
  • Autodesk, a software developer from California, will provide 75 Powermill licenses for use by students and instructors
  • Spectron Electric of Fraser finalized installation with materials provided by Grant Industries, also of Fraser

Press Event 073During the event, the American Mold Builders Association (AMBA) presented a check for $10,000 from the American Mold Manufacturing Advancement Fund (AMMA Fund) to cover additional expenses.

The best part of the evening was near the end of formal presentation when Lincoln graduates of the program were invited to make remarks. Many of them are currently employed in the industry and were proud to share their success story with the crowd of more than 50 people.

Each of them credited their instructors, Mr. Fred Cook and Mr. Mike Zainea for inspiring them to be the best they can be.

Miller’s Big Red now offers Union Joints for weekend visitors

mbr_logo3Here is another reason to Fall in Love with Macomb and our orchards.

Every weekend this fall, Big Red will feature a “pop-up” restaurant called “Union Joints.” Union Joints features favorite menu items from Clarkston Union, Union Woodshop, Vinsetta Garage, Fenton Firehall and Union General.  And yes, the mouth-watering and award-winning Union mac-n-cheese and other favorites are available on Saturdays and Sundays between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., or until they sell out. Reservations are not required. Order your selections at the counter and then enjoy it at the picnic tables or picnic-style on the grass.

Big Red has new owners and has undergone several significant building projects.  The new owners have been careful to maintain all the best of 50 years of tradition while appealing to a modern generation yearning to experience a little piece of the country, savory tastes, and an afternoon knee-deep in a pumpkin patch.

A trip to Big Red is not complete without a stop in the farm’s Marketplace. Brimming with farm fresh produce, made-from-scratch baked goods, gourmet condiments and other exceptional local products. While you’re here, experience the aroma, sights and sounds of cider making and the taste of homemade donuts and caramel apples. Enjoy a picnic, visit the petting farm, take a hayride, get lost in a corn maze, climb a straw mountain and even pick your own apples.

Big Red also won best Cider in Michigan in 2016!

Miller’s Big Red is located at 4900 32 Mile Road in Washington, Michigan. Check them out on facebook or at millersbigred.com

Lauri Cowhy is a senior communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Manufacturing Day is gearing up in Macomb County!

DSC_1586Two weeks from today, 57 of Macomb County’s leading manufacturers will host tours for nearly 2,000 students from all 28 public high schools. These tours are designed to provide students with a chance to see advanced manufacturing in action and introduce them to a variety of interesting careers.

Last week, more than 150 people gathered to prepare for the big day.  See photos from the MFG Day Orientation Breakfast, sponsored by the Macomb Intermediate School District (MISD) here on our Facebook page.

A highlight of the event was a new video, produced by the MISD, featuring past participants who discovered manufacturing as a career possibility:  https://youtu.be/uwgHi67eLYc

Newly revised, the website www.ManufactureMyFuture.com provides a wealth of information about events throughout the region; including information for Macomb County students (and parents); current information about hot jobs in the industry; and it also lists out all of our host sites this year.

As a follow-up to national MFG Day, the department is partnering with Macomb Community College to offer the Careers in Manufacturing & Technology Expo. The event features hands-on opportunities to interact with tools and simulators used in the industry; opportunities to hear from recent students who are now gainfully employed in the industry; learn about educational pathways that lead to career success; and meet with area companies to learn about their hiring priorities. The event also features special guests, free concessions and door prizes.

The Careers in Manufacturing & Technology Expo will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Weds. Dec. 6 at Macomb’s Sports & Expo Center.

Macomb County was one of the first in the nation to organize a countywide celebration of Manufacturing Day. Since 2014, more than 5,500 high school students from throughout Macomb County have had a chance to see manufacturing in action and meet people who make things. It has taken the dedication of many, including an active planning committee and a generous group of sponsors including Dominion Technologies Group, PTI Engineered Plastics, Fori Automation, Futuramic Tool & Engineering, L&L Products and Siemens.

Westview Orchards to feature Made-in-Michigan food products on Sundays this fall

tmp_10209_7-3-2012_23100_Beautiful Westview Orchards in Washington Township is one of Macomb County’s northern gems.  This historic farm – it has been operated by the same family for more than 200 year – has delighted generations of families with their wonderful donuts, cider and smorgasboard of family fun activities.

This fall, Westview is adding a new reason to visit them on Sundays.  In addition to the normal fall- themed events and wine tasting, Westview is teaming up with local small food businesses and providing them the opportunity to get their name out.  These businesses will be providing samples so that customers can taste before they their new locally produced favorite products.

This Sunday, Sept. 17, the Made In Michigan Barn will feature: Great Lakes Pickles, Motown Soup, and Grandma Luckey’s Herb Dressing. 

So come stuff your face with homemade donuts and cider, watch the kids play, all while getting the chance to try new products that you will not see in the big box stores yet.  With your help and Macomb County’s Economic Development team, when these small businesses turn big, you will be able to tell all your friends and family that you knew, tried and were purchasing their products before they were well known.  

If you are interested in learning more about Westview Orchards in Washington Twp, MI visit www.westvieworchards.com

Are you a local business with a food product you’d like for people to try on a future Sunday?

Please contact me at  jack.johns@macombgov.org with a little information about your product and your contact information.  (Disclaimer – This opportunity is only for products made in a commercial kitchen. We cannot accommodate entrepreneurs operating under the cottage food law and making products in their home kitchen with this venture.)

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Jack Johns is a Project Coordinator within the economic development services group. He specializes in serving the food and agricultural industry as well as automation, robotics, connected vehicles, energy and retail businesses.

Networking and baseball with the Consular Corps of Michigan

What started off as a stormy and humid Thursday turned into a warm evening with a slight breeze and an enjoyable time at Jimmy John’s Field. Under the third baseline pavilion, members of the Consular Corps of Michigan gathered with Macomb County’s economic development team to discuss business attraction and international investments while the Birmingham Bloomfield Beavers played against the Eastside Diamond Hoppers.

Corps 1According to the Consular Corps of Michigan website, their mission is to “sustain an environment in which trade, investment and cultural relationships flourish between member nations and the United States of America…” Representatives from Barbados, Denmark, Germany, Japan, Korea, Latvia, Norway, Switzerland, Ukraine and United Kingdom were all on hand to hear remarks from County Executive Mark A. Hackel and Chairman and CEO of General Sports and Entertainment Andy Appleby.

Hackel promoted bringing business to Macomb County and the services we offer under our economic development program. Appleby discussed how his dream of designing and operating a baseball field came to life with hands-on assistance from our department. As part of the festivities, guests were given a behind-the-scenes tour of Jimmy John’s Field. Many partner agencies joined the meetup, representing the Macomb County Chamber, OneMacomb and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

Corps 3The key takeaway: Macomb County is a great place for international companies to call home. With access to waterways and international borders, Macomb County has the proximity as well as the talent and expertise to assist these businesses. Fostering and building these relationships with our international partners is fundamental to the county’s expansion and growth goals, and we welcome them with open arms.

Lauri Cowhy is a senior communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.