PHOTOS: Governor Whitmer visits branch businesses, Hillsdale Counties

PHOTOS: Governor Whitmer visits branch businesses, Hillsdale Counties


October 13, 2021

Contact: [email protected]

PHOTOS: Governor Whitmer visits branch businesses, Hillsdale Counties

Tours include the Keefer Hotel, a grant-backed project Governor Whitmer announced earlier this year that will create 50 jobs and generate $ 12.3 million in investment

LANSING, Michigan – Governor Whitmer visited today Mastronardi products at Coldwater and Keefer Hotel in Hillsdale, highlighting it MI New Economy Plan to grow the middle class, support small businesses and invest in our communities. The governor was joined by MDARD director Gary McDowell in Coldwater.

“From agriculture to tourism, today’s visits to Branch and Hillsdale counties highlighted the strength and diversity of Michigan’s economy,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “I’m focusing on the laser to meet the great structural challenges we face in growing Michigan’s economy, creating well-paying jobs and building the industries of the future. I look forward to working with key partners, the legislature and others who wish to put Michigan’s families, communities and small businesses first as we strengthen our state’s economy. ”

Mastronardi is a fourth-generation, family-owned fruit and vegetable company that first introduced commercial greenhouse cultivation in North America. Mastronardi Produce operates as one of the largest glass greenhouses in the Midwest producing fresh vegetables even during the winter months.

“Michigan is known for our work in food and agriculture, but we are also at the forefront of the evolution of agriculture with brand new technology,” said Gary, Director of MDARD McDowell. “Mastronardi is a great example of how we can ensure that quality products are readily available in our state and how innovation and sustainability are essential to the growth of Michigan’s agricultural economy.

“It is an absolute honor that Governor Gretchen Whitmer is joining us at our Michigan Maroa Farms facility,” said Fourth generation CEO and family member Paul Mastronardi to lead Mastronardi Produce. “It is a pleasure to showcase our tasty and locally grown products, our sustainable cultivation methods and the socio-economic impact of our greenhouses on Michigan’s agricultural sector.

The Keefer House Hotel project will locate a 34-room boutique hotel in the heart of downtown Hillsdale. This historic renovation project includes a commercial space on the ground floor as well as a hotel space with modern amenities, a welcoming lobby and an upscale restaurant to be enjoyed by guests as well as members of the community. . The long vacant Keefer House is a building contributing to the commercial district of the City of Hillsdale’s National Register of Historic Places and the development is expected to transform downtown Hillsdale and spur economic development by generating new tourist stays and bringing additional income to the region.

The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $ 12.3 million, create 50 full-time equivalent jobs, Support from Michigan Strategic Fund through a $ 2 million MCRP equity investment. Local support for the project includes a 12-year Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Act (OPRA) tax rebate valued at approximately $ 577,000. In addition, the city will partially cancel the loan for the building on the certificate of occupancy in the amount of $ 265,000. The town of Hillsdale is also certified with MEDC’s DRR program.

“It’s very exciting to see the Keefer Hotel project under construction. This project will not only bring much needed revitalization to downtown Hillsdale, but it will address one of the biggest barriers to tourism in our community, the need for additional hotel rooms, ”said Hillsdale City Manager David Mackie. “It was only through working with MEDC, CL Real Estate Development LLC, the Hillsdale Tax Increment Finance Authority and the city that this project was made possible. We appreciate that these entities have made this historic investment in the Town of Hillsdale.

“The Keefer Hotel project will transform the historic Keefer House into a unique and attractive location in downtown Hillsdale that will once again delight residents and visitors,” said Quentin L. Messer, Jr., CEO of MEDC and Chairman and Chairman of the Board of MSF. “We are committed to supporting innovative place-building projects that create vibrant and resilient communities and foster strong economic recovery statewide. We are delighted to be working with our local partners on this project, which will help make Hillsdale an even more attractive place to live, work, visit and play. “



Luz W. German