Archive for the ‘Business’ Category

Moo Cluck Moo Restaurant to Close Saturday

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016

Moo Cluck Moo, a Dearborn Heights restaurant that prided itself on “healthier” food and high employee pay is closingmoo-cluck-moo its doors after more than three years in business, the Dearborn Press & Guide is reporting.

Moo Cluck Moo, 8606 N. Telegraph Road, will officially close on Saturday.

Moo Cluck Moo says it will continue to serve food at its Ford Field location on game day and the restaurant’s mobile kitchen that does business across metro Detroit.

Dearborn to End Paid Parking March 24

Monday, March 9th, 2015
Between now and March 24 paid meters, including the majority on the streets, will have been removed. As of March 15, the lots with attendants will be free and the gates will be open.

Between now and March 24 paid meters, including the majority on the streets, will have been removed. As of March 15, the lots with attendants will be free and the gates will be open.

After years of complaints from local businesses, many who are no longer in business, and countless residents, Dearborn will end user-paid parking for the parking decks and surface lots in west Dearborn on Tuesday, March 24.

It isn’t clear what this move will cost the city, but it could be a positive change for west Dearborn.

What taxpayers have had to shell out for parking booths, meters (the installation and removal) isn’t quite clear yet but there is a big cost. Between now and March 24 paid meters, including the majority on the streets, will have been removed. As of March 15, the lots with attendants will be free and the gates will be open.

However, Dearborn officials says that if drivers park at a spot with a meter at any time, they must still pay the meter or face a fine.

About 40 meters along Mason, Howard, and West Village Drive will remain after March 24 to encourage customer turnover. These spots are among the most convenient parking spaces to nearby businesses.

Parking restrictions will still be enforced at the meters on the three streets. Meters will remain along Howard, from West Village Drive to Garrison; Mason, from West Village Drive to Michigan Avenue; and West Village Drive, along Mason to Howard.

The City of Dearborn has transitioned away from a user-paid parking system in the west downtown business district to promote greater interest from real estate developers and to boost customer activity.

Dearborn officials say the de-commissioning of the user-paid parking system “addresses the perception that paid parking is an obstacle to redevelopment.

“It also addresses a popular sentiment that paying for parking in public lots, decks and on-street spaces discourages customers who would otherwise patronize west Dearborn businesses,” the city of Dearborn said in a prepared press release.

The City Council voted on Oct. 21 to phase out the user-paid system, based on a recommendation from the Mayor and the Parking Advisory Commission.

Mayor John B. O’Reilly, Jr. stated in advocating the change:

“This is a very positive step that will help us achieve our goal of promoting more investment and activity in the west downtown. To get the best results for our local economy, we need to be realistic and remove anything that is perceived as an impediment to recreating a robust and vibrant business district.”

The public parking system will continue to be financed with money from the West Dearborn Downtown Development Authority (WDDDA) and the City’s general fund at a lesser amount than in previous years.

The City is also discussing the re-instatement of a Special Assessment District (SAD) to cover the operational costs of the parking system since someone has to cover the cost of the two large parking decks.

Under an SAD, which is a public version of a Common Area Maintenance (CAM) charge implemented at private malls and multi-client centers, businesses that use the public parking spaces will be required to pay for their upkeep, insurance and snow removal, but not infrastructure improvements.

The boundaries of the SAD and the cost allocation assigned to each business would be determined at public hearings before the City Council.

In conjunction with new businesses opening this spring, the WDDDA will launch a marketing campaign promoting the downtown district, including the end of almost all user-paid parking spots.

Open House Dec. 15 at New Dearborn Train Station

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014
The public is invited to a free open house at Dearborn’s new train station, the John D. Dingell Transit Center, from 4-6 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 15.

The public is invited to a free open house at Dearborn’s new train station, the John D. Dingell Transit Center, from 4-6 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 15.

The public is invited to a free open house at Dearborn’s new train station, the John D. Dingell Transit Center, from 4-6 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 15

The new transit center is at 21201 Michigan Ave., near Brady Street, at the entrance to the west downtown business district.

At the Dec. 15 open house, residents can tour the station, see informative displays and talk with people knowledgeable about the future of train travel.  A mural created by Dearborn students will also be featured.

In addition, people attending the open house can enter a free drawing to win tickets to The Henry Ford’s popular Holiday Nights in Greenfield Village.

The new station will open for business a few days before the open house.

Amtrak trains will begin stopping at the 21201 Michigan Ave. site on Wednesday, Dec. 10. Amtrak is moving its operations from the current train station behind the Dearborn Police Station.

The new 16,000-square-foot Dingell Transit Center promotes intermodal transportation, connecting travelers via train, bus, taxi and pedestrian and bike paths to work, education, cultural attractions, shopping and recreation in Dearborn and beyond.

The station is an important component in initiatives to boost commuter rail from Ann Arbor to Detroit and accelerated speed rail from Pontiac to Chicago.

Six Amtrak trains will continue to stop daily at Dingell Transit Center, with increased Amtrak service and the addition of commuter rail expected in the coming years. In fiscal year 2014, almost 79,000 passengers used the existing Dearborn Amtrak station.

“Dearborn is excited to be part of the future of rail. We will continue to work with our partners to increase convenient travel that starts in Dearborn and takes riders throughout southeast Michigan, as well as between Dearborn and Chicago,” said Mayor John. B. O’Reilly, Jr.  “We’re anticipating bringing more customers to our Dearborn businesses and more visitors to our cultural and entertainment venues. And in the near future, people are going to find it very easy to get on a train in Dearborn and connect with the new M1-Rail in Detroit for an evening out or to go to a game.”

The new transit center was funded entirely with $28.2 million from the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

The City of Dearborn owns the station and the 7-acre site, and Amtrak will run the facility.

The Henry Ford has historic displays inside the center, including an iconic Davenport train engine.

The transit center also features a pedestrian bridge over the tracks that will allow travelers to access a new entrance to The Henry Ford complex, including the Henry Ford Museum, Greenfield Village, the IMAX Theater, and Ford Rouge Factory Tours. About 1.6 million people a year visit The Henry Ford.

Ford Motor Company will plans on having a new F-150 on display at the transit center.

The transit center has a silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED). The building has a metal roof with solar collectors, energy efficient lighting, and geothermal heating and cooling.

Inside the building is also a large tile mural created by students and volunteers in the Pockets of Perception (POP) art project. The initiative, led by the Dearborn Community Fund, brings together high school students from across Dearborn to create community art.  For the station, students designed the mural and enlisted volunteers to help create some of the tiles.  A POP representative will be on hand during the open house to share more information about the project.

Dearborn Working With Owners to Preserve Hotel

Friday, October 31st, 2014

The City of Dearborn is working with the owners of the 772-room conference hotel known as the Adoba and formerly the Hyatt to ensure that the business transitions smoothly for guests and employees after the operator of the Adoba announced unexpectedly it was leaving on Friday, Oct. 31.

Mayor John B. O’Reilly, Jr. and his administration were in contact with the owner on Thursday so that the hotel can stay open for business, guests can keep their reservations and the 235 employees can remain on the job.

The owner, Royal Realities, has assured the City that it has an operator ready to take over the hotel at midnight on Friday.

“We are optimistic that this landmark hotel will continue serving guests and employing staff members,” said Mayor O’Reilly. “The hotel accommodates so many conferences and visitors to Dearborn, whose impression of our city often starts with their experience at the hotel. We have every reason to work with the owners to ensure that the hotel remains an appealing center of hospitality and commerce in our community and region.”

Royal Realities must pay delinquent personal property taxes owed to the City in order to receive a hotel license. Under City of Dearborn Code of Ordinances, a hotel license cannot be issued if personal property taxes are not paid. As of Oct. 30, about $335,000 in personal property taxes is owed to the City.

Royal Realities was in court late on Thursday petitioning for the release of insurance money held in escrow so that it could immediately pay the personal property taxes to the City.

Royal Realities and the operator of the hotel, Atmosphere Hospitality Management Services LLC, have been in litigation. The City has no role in the legal dispute between the two.

The City has constantly advocated for the success of Dearborn’s largest hotel and to be supportive of any actions that focused on that goal.

“We want to make sure it remains a landmark for Dearborn, and continues to draw in visitors and conferences from around the country,” said the Mayor.

Taubman Sells Fairlane Town Center in Dearborn

Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

Taubman Centers, owner and operator of malls and shopping centers across the U.S., announced today that it would sell seven of its 24 shipping center properties, including Fairlane Town Center in Dearborn, which first opened in 1976.

The properties are being purchased by Starwood Capital Group, a global private investment firm. Starwood will pay $785 million in cash and assume $620 million in debt, according to a statement Wednesday from the companies.

It isn’t yet clear what the new owners of Fairlane will change at the mall, if anything.

While Fairlane isn’t the draw it once was to many Dearbornites, the mall does deserve credit for keeping the facility in great shape over its 38 year existence.

Kroger to Open New Gas Station in West Dearborn

Monday, October 28th, 2013
The Discount Tire store on Michigan Avenue in West Dearborn (shown here) has been razed and will be replaced with a new Kroger gas station.

The Discount Tire store on Michigan Avenue in West Dearborn (shown here) has been razed and will be replaced with a new Kroger gas station.

While it is always good to see vacant eyesores along Michigan Avenue in Dearborn come down, it can be kind of a letdown when you eventually discover the new business that could be moving in.

That’s the case with the demolition of the long-vacant Discount Tire store on Michigan, between Outer Drive and Nowlin streets.

City officials tell that Kroger is working with Dearborn to obtain permission to construct a Kroger gas station at that location. Kroger already operates a gas station on Ford Road in Dearborn Heights and this would be its second in the immediate area.

Now, we will be the first to admit that a new building – even if a gas station – is better than the vacant eyesore that the Discount Tire structure had become over the years.

It’s just that with so little new retail in downtown west Dearborn any time you see new construction, there is always the hope it will be something that becomes a destination. A gas station simply doesn’t live up to that dream . . .


Informational Meeting on New Train Station April 8

Friday, March 29th, 2013
Updates on conceptual plans for development of the area surrounding Dearborn's new train station is set for April 8.

Updates on conceptual plans for development of the area surrounding Dearborn’s new train station is set for April 8.

An informational session on April 8 will give the Dearborn community updates on conceptual plans for development of the area surrounding the City’s new train station, as well as a chance to provide feedback on the final design recommendations.

The event will be in Studio A of the Ford Community and Performing Arts Center from 7-9 p.m. and is open to residents, business owners, commuters who work in Dearborn, college and university students and other Dearborn stakeholders.

The meeting is part of the Transit Oriented Development (TOD) initiative that seeks to capitalize on the new train station’s ability to draw more visitors, businesses and residents to Dearborn’s west downtown. The train station is scheduled to open in early 2014.

Through a grant awarded the city from MIPlace Partnership, planners from Michigan State University and experts from the Michigan Municipal League and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority are assisting city staff and stakeholders with creating a vision for the neighborhoods, parkland and business area near the train station.

Although the conceptual designs are not binding, the exercise will help to focus the City’s efforts when considering future development.

Public sessions held in December and January and led by the design team allowed residents and other stakeholders to generate ideas about how they would like the area to be developed. Suggestions focused on creating green space, fostering community involvement and honoring Dearborn’s rich heritage.

At the April 8 meeting, the team will return to give community members the opportunity to view and comment on the TOD design recommendations created based on those earlier design sessions.

The team will walk participants through various depictions of how the area could be developed, as well as give a summary of their final report on the design concepts.

The event will include the next steps in the process and details about the final TOD community celebration.

For more information, please call Liz Hendley in the City Plan Office at 313-943-2171.


Dearborn Resident Buys Former Cheli’s Chili Bar

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

The building that once housed Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn has a new owner.

Najib Rizk, a Dearborn resident who owns the nearby Le Cigar cocktail and cigar bar on Michigan Avenue, tells that a deal was inked on Wednesday.

Cheli’s officially closed its doors Wednesday night, hosting a “closing party” for all of its regulars and friends.

Rizk says he plans to reopen the building as a restaurant and bar under a new name, promising to bring something special to Dearbornites.

“I am investing in Dearborn because I love this city,” Rizk says. “My plan is to make that corner of downtown west Dearborn a destination for Dearborn and metro Detroit.”

We wish him the best.


Deal Near to Sell Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn

Tuesday, February 19th, 2013
A deal is near to sell Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn. The restaurant is owned by former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios.

A deal is near to sell Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn. The restaurant is owned by former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios.

Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn, owned by former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios, is expected to be sold as early as this week, according to people familiar with the restaurant.

If the sale goes through, the restaurant/bar would close and reopen under a new name and theme. Cheli’s employees are being told their last day of work could be as soon as Wednesday, Feb. 20.

The sale of Cheli’s is not unexpected. Chris Chelios has been trying to sell the location since retiring from the Detroit Red Wings. It is not clear what Chelios will do with his Detroit restaurant, located across from Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers.

Cheli’s Chili Bar was once one of the more popular places in Dearborn but over the years it has become just another bar in Dearborn.

If the building sale does go through, we are hopeful the restaurant will be renovated and reopened with something that will spark more interest in downtown west Dearborn.


Discount Grocer ValuLand Opens Sunday in Dearborn

Saturday, February 16th, 2013

The grand opening for Valu Land, a new discount grocery store in Dearborn, is this Sunday.

Valu Land is Spartan Store Inc.’s version of Aldi, a discount grocery store with no brand name products. Valu Land is also designed to compete with Save-A-Lot and even dollar stores. Many of the products lining the shelves of Valu Land will be the grocer’s own Spartan brand or the discounted brand Valu Time.

The new store is scheduled to open at 8 a.m. Sunday.

While some in Dearborn have expressed disappointment about this new discount grocer coming to this location, Spartan Stores does deserve credit for sprucing up the building it is moving into and improving the general look of that area.

Some Dearborn city leaders were hoping for an Aldi to move into the former Michael’s location rather than Valu Land, which says a lot about how low the business bar has been set by some in City Hall.

Neither store is desirable but it does provide a glimpse into the minds of some city executives who are willing to accept average or below instead of trying to attract more aspirational businesses such as a Trader Joe’s or a Whole Foods Market.