By Scott Sullivan
Douglas City Council Monday agreed to hire Laingsburg-based planning consultant LANDUseUSA for up to $29,000 to conduct a mixed-use market analysis of downtown, waterfront and urban neighborhoods development.
“Acquiring this information,” said council’s resolution, “and developing a comprehensive strategy will: provide a foundation for informed decision making by identifying the potential for future retail, entertainment, recreating, dining and housing choices as well as the adaptive reuse of vacant buildings and properties.”
LANDUseUSA owner/ president Sharon Woods, CRE, CNUa, NCI, MA, has agreed to be Douglas’ market analyst, project manager and single point of contact.
“I personally will attend all meetings,” Woods wrote city manager Bill LeFevere and economic development director Lisa Imus Nov. 28, “and not delegate any of the target market analysis work to third-party agents, liaisons, interns or junior analysts.
“I will also collaborate with your property owners and prospective developers in any way that you choose and authorize, such as phone discussions, joint meetings, market tour, study group and/or public forum with other local stakeholders in the real estate market,” she continued.
Woods, who founded LANDUseUSA in 2008, has 28 years of professional experience in market research and analysis. She has personally conducted 65 target market analyses across Michigan in the last five years.
Her proposal cites harvesting data from past studies performed for Douglas, including Edgewater Resources’ Oct. 31 Point Pleasant Marina facilities and site condition assessment, in her research here.
Douglas, armed with a $1-million Michigan Department of Natural Resources grant, is eyeing buying the now-private 1-acre, 15-slip facility at 201 S. Washington St. and converting it to a municipal marina.
Woods’ proposed fee breakdown: $10,000 for residential analysis, $3,000 for leakage analysis, $6,000 for placemaking and implementation, all “recommended,” plus $10,000 for commercial and retail analysis, which she called “optional.”
Woods anticipates a final report of at least 80 pages, including a five page executive summary plus infographics and other supporting materials assembled into an appendix with about five chapters.
Her proposal asks for at least three months to complete a housing study for the city. Should Douglas choose to add items related to a retail market analysis, along with stakeholder engagement, “we will ask for additional time so we can do the best possible job,” Woods said.