Grant helps Eden Property fix up Franklin Square

Our Town Iron Mountain

THE IRON MOUNTAIN DOWNTOWN Development Authority awarded Eden Property Collection a $5,000 Facade Improvement Grant for work on the Franklin Square property at 333 S. Stephenson Ave. in downtown Iron Mountain. From left are DDA Program Director Amber Pipp, Eden Property Collection President Beau Anderson, Eden Property Collection Executive Administrator Claire Valeski and DDA Business Development committee member Betsy Sawicky. (Terri Castelaz/Daily News photo)

IRON MOUNTAIN — Eden Property Collection has received a $5,000 Facade Improvement Grant from the Iron Mountain Downtown Development Authority.

The downtown business used the funds for improvements to its property at 333 S. Stephenson Ave., known as the Franklin Square.

The renovation project at the old Ben Franklin building included installing black metal over its existing rock forehead, wood undertones, installing lights in the underside of the fascia and adding lighting to the side of the building for proper visibility. They also added exterior signage, including a directory to properly advertise its current tenants and to accommodate future businesses.

The project took about four weeks to complete, Eden Property Collection President Beau Anderson said.

They continue to renovate the Franklin Square, something they have done since acquiring the building two years ago, Anderson said. In addition to updating its office spaces, the building is getting an upstairs bathroom and a chairlift for the handicapped.

EDEN PROPERTY COLLECTION used a $5,000 Facade Improvement Grant from the Iron Mountain Downtown Development Authority to improve the Franklin Square property at 333 S. Stephenson Ave., downtown Iron Mountain. The new look for the Ben Franklin building includes installation of black metal over its existing rock forehead, wood undertones and new lights. (Terri Castelaz/Daily News photo)

“The game plan is to make the entire building handicap accessible,” he said. “This is something future tenants seek — allowing for all-types uses for the spaces.”

This was the second grant Eden has received to update its properties.

Franklin Square suites are occupied by Francie’s Traditional Design, Bankers Life, Eden Property Collection office, John Lutz, TADCA, WRK Collection, Dickinson Area Community Foundation, Distinktive Tattoos LLC, Bethel Ministries and Northpointe Behavior Services.

They currently have three vacancies in the Franklin Square — two at ground level and one in the lower level.

“Everyone at Eden would once again like to thank the Iron Mountain DDA for their efforts and continued support in the rejuvenation of our downtown,” Anderson said. “Despite a challenging year, we remain committed to creating inspiring places to work and live in our community. Those efforts are realized through the grants that the DDA offers.”

The Facade Improvement grant was designed to encourage revitalization of historic properties within the DDA district.

“The DDA is extremely proud to support this facade project, which has made a noticeable impact downtown,” said Amber Pipp, DDA program director.

The program supports improvement to exterior building facades — front, sides, back — that eliminate blight and stays true to the traditional architectural characteristics of the downtown.

This is a matching grant program that provides financial support to property owners for small and large projects that enhance the aesthetic appearance and functionality of the existing property.

Examples of qualifying projects include, but are not limited to, removing non-historic features and materials, adding windows or display areas, uncovering or rehabilitating the original facade of an existing building; restoring or repairing original brickwork, wood, masonry or stucco; reconstructing architectural details such as cornices or transoms; replacing or repairing windows and doors; and adding traditional-style awnings, lights or signs.

“We are very grateful to Eden Property Collection and to all of the downtown developers that have continually invested in and worked to revitalize downtown Iron Mountain,” Pipp said.

The DDA has two available grants for properties and businesses in the Downtown District, the Facade Improvement grant and the Downtown Assistance Program grant.

They are now accepting applications for both grant programs. Deadline for the Facade Improvement grant program is March 22, and May 24 for the Downtown Assistance grant program.

In addition to Franklin Square, Eden Property Collection in Iron Mountain includes Stephenson Court, Thunder Island, Timbers Motor Lodge, Sandstone Studios, and Orion Hunting Products. They also have Sundance Building in Norway and Waterfront North and South in Menominee.

“We would like to encourage the public when able to please support the downtown events, as the proceeds from those events directly support the grants and the revitalization of the community we live in,” Anderson said.

For more information about the grants, go online to downtownironmountain.com/grants.


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