Skip to content

What is Amplify GR up to these days?

February 7, 2018

Is has been 4 months since AmplifyGR made the announcement that they canceled all of the previously scheduled meetings with the community on their development plans for the Boston Square and Cottage Grove neighborhoods.

AmplifyGR staff person Willie Patterson, made a video announcement that was posted on October 12. In that message, AmplifyGR acknowledges that the community has raised several concerns about the process AmplifyGR was engaged in, which led to the cancelation of the meetings. Of the three community Forums that AmplifyGR did host, there was significant pushback from the community and those in attendance

However, AmplifyGR is merely adjusting their plans for the re-development of parts of southeast Grand Rapids. In an AmplifyGR blog post from August 22, they state, “Still, those of us on the front lines agree: If going slower is the price of getting this right… of NOT repeating the mistakes of the past… it’s worth it. You’re worth it. Our community is worth it. And our commitment and passion to achieving the above priorities has never been greater.” 

The above statement is a clear indication that AmplifyGR plans to move forward with their development projects, they just want to get more feedback from the community. In fact, it seems as though, based on some of their Facebook posts, that the DeVos-created entity is meeting with people, just in a less public fashion. In other words, AmplifyGR is moving forward with their development plans for southeast Grand Rapids, outside of the public arena, where they have been challenged on their lack of transparency and intent from the very start. AmplifyGR wants to avoid the kind of pushback they have been experiencing, especially when the community has a chance to speak their mind in a public forum and even interrupt the organization’s plans, as we saw during the last public meeting AmplifyGR held in September

I have also looked at the Southtown Corridor Improvement District minutes over the past six months and there is no new evidence that AmplifyGR has been either attending or having input on those meetings. I looked at those minutes, because it was at minutes from January of 2017 that I first learned of the AmplifyGR plans to re-develop parts of southeast Grand Rapids.

In addition, I have looked through the GR Planning Commission documents and meeting minutes and have found no evidence of AmplifyGR activities there.

So, what has the DeVos-created entity, AmplifyGR, been up to is recent months? The last blog post on their website is from August of 2017. However, their Facebook page has been posting information since the announcement of the public meeting cancellations.

AmplifyGR hosted a Coffee with the Cops function, has promoted community turkey give away during the holidays, job fairs and they have posted several announcements about other DeVos Family funded projects, such as Spring GR and the DeVos created entity Start Garden. In fact, Start Garden’s 100 Ideas entrepreneurial project is the now the cover page for AmplifyGR. DeVos money looking out for DeVos money.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: