Downtown Development Authority
MAIN STREET BASELINE SUMMARY
Our Main Street baseline summary is complete! After several stakeholder meetings, a public survey, and collection of new market data, the downtown Coldwater baseline summary is available for view. The summary shares the results of the public survey, includes details of the local market, and identifies key areas of focus. Click here for a link to the report.
Under the guidance of the DDA, with assistance from the City’s Neighborhood Services Department, the Committee will be comprised of 3 citizen members and representatives from the City Planning and Historic District Commissions. The Branch District Library, American Legion, Altrusa, and the Coldwater Garden Club have also been asked to designate a representative to serve on the Committee.
- Michael J. Caywood (President)
Term: October, 2018 - September, 2026
- Brad Rockey (Vice President)
Term: March, 1991 - September, 2025
- Thomas Kramer, Mayor
Term: November, 2011 - November, 2023
- Makayla Bendele
Term: January, 2021 - September, 2025
- Christopher Howell
Term: January 2022 - September, 2023
- Matt Biolchini
Term: November, 2021 - September, 2026
- Courtney Dirschell
Term: August, 2019 - September, 2024
- Patrick Kelley
Partial Term: November, 2022 - September, 2024
- John Rucker
Term: October, 2019 - September, 2023
Authority Member term length is 4 years.
Beautiful Downtown Coldwater
Current Projects & Activities
Building Improvement Program: Rebates and Low Interest Loans
The DDA offers rebates towards façade improvement projects and partners with Century Bank and Trust, and Southern Michigan Bank & Trust, to provide low interest loans for façade improvements. The DDA also provides design assistance at no cost to encourage high-quality projects.
This year six buildings have taken on exterior renovations with the assistance of the rebate program, while several others have been approved for funding and are in the process of completing their improvements.
Note: applicants must apply prior to having any work done. The DDA reviews design plans to ensure projects are appropriate for the historic district. Meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month.
To request design assistance, please email Audrey Tappenden or call 517-279-6913.
We continue to place print advertisements in publications with regional and widespread impact. These include the Coldwater Country Visitor’s Guide, Lake Access Magazine, and the Tibbits playbill.
Seasonal Planters & Decorations
“Taylor’s Building” - Purchase, Maintenance, & Tenant
The DDA purchased the former Taylor’s building during the November 2019 regular meeting. It is the goal of the Authority to use this building as a development tool and to offer incentives to the developer(s) of a project which meets the goals of the community and our downtown overall. Architectural renderings and cost estimates were prepared to outline the development potential at the site. The DDA is currently working to assess cost of required maintenance activities and financing options. The DDA is also exploring the feasibility of locating the Children's Museum of Branch County to the ground floor. Access the RFQ by clicking here.
Patronicity Fundraiser Completed!
This fall we hosted a public fundraiser to raise money towards the relocation and expansion of the Children's Museum of Branch County to Downtown Coldwater! Thanks to our generous community, we raised over $70,000, helping us earn an additional $50,000 from the MEDC Match on Main program. Funds raised are being used for renovations and museum exhibits.
Match on Main Recipients
This year, the DDA's application to Match on Main resulted in a $9,029 award for Shemel's Carpet & Interiors. Funds will be used for upgrading their technology systems and using software for high-quality product demonstrations.
In 2022, an $18,000 grant was awarded to El Taco Loco for architectural plans. The plans will help the business plan a restaurant expansion and assess the feasibility of upper story apartment units.
In 2020, the DDA applied for a Match on Main Grant to support 9 of our downtown businesses impacted by COVID-19 and were one of a handful communities selected to receive grant funds. We received $35,000 through the Match on Main program and distributed awards ranging from $2,000-$10,000.
Funds from the DDA Rebate Program have been earmarked for 11 projects in the 2020 fiscal year. Over $1,000,000 in private investment has been committed to downtown during the first 13 months of the program.
Social Media Growth
Over 1,800 Facebook followers and individual post reach over 15,000.
Bike Rack Installation
Bike racks have been designed, purchased, delivered and installed! Our downtown is now even more accessible to its visitors, workers, and community.
Small Town Design Initiative Moves Forward
The Coldwater Downtown Development Authority (DDA) is taking the next step towards revitalization of Four Corners Park with the formation of the Small Town Design Initiative (STDI) Project Steering Committee.
The STDI is a program of Michigan State University's (MSU) Planning and Landscape Architecture Department which has worked with many small communities throughout Michigan who've utilized the design concepts provided by the STDI program to further their beatification and community revitalization efforts. The program was brought to Coldwater as a joint effort between the City of Coldwater and the Coldwater Downtown Development Authority (DDA).
As part of its effort to carry out the goals and objectives of the Authority, the Coldwater DDA has hired the following businesses for contractual services over the course of 2019:
Neitzert’s Greenhouse & Florist
Neitzert’s installs and maintains floral decorations seasonally in Downtown Coldwater.
Unspent revenues that accumulated during any of the past 5-10 fiscal years were set aside for use towards large and/or long-term projects. Some of the DDA’s net revenues resulted from the annual budget while other surpluses were realized from a building sale. These positive net revenues have been deployed for parking lot improvements and renovations, development opportunities, the façade improvement rebate program, and other projects.