Authors: Michigan State University School of Planning, Design and Construction
The City of Durand is in the process of updating its 2004 Downtown Economic Enhancement Strategy. Home to roughly 3,400 residents, the City hosts a population that is 64% low to moderate income (LMI). The community has made great strides to improve and beautify the downtown district, but it still struggles to attract and retain viable local businesses. The goal of updating this plan is to develop a comprehensive strategy for attracting, retaining, and growing local businesses in the historic downtown. It will include performing basic market research, implementing a community wide survey, and incorporating new data into the existing plan parameters to identify recommendations and implementation strategies. For example, identifying business development strategies that target high demand commercial uses.
Colleen O'Toole is the City Manager of Saline, Michigan, a rural community located along I-69 between Lansing and Flint. Prior to her work with the City of Saline, she lived and worked in Chicago, Illinois where she held positions in urban economic development, startup incubation and venture financing, and IT management and operations. She is a graduate of Miami University (BA) and DePaul University (MPA).