Marquette City Commission to allow requests for proposals for South Lakeshore Boulevard lot

The city commission has not made a final decision on if it will accept any RFPs to develop the lot but has voted to accept RFPs.
 Photo courtesy: City of Marquette
Photo courtesy: City of Marquette (WLUC)
Published: Feb. 13, 2023 at 11:43 PM EST
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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - The Marquette City Commission voted five to one at a meeting on Monday to open up a request for proposal (RFP) process and evaluate requests to purchase the city-owned lot at 601 S Lakeshore Blvd.

Currently, the lot is green space. Three companies have already submitted RFPs to develop the 2.8-acre lot at the corner of US-41 South and Lakeshore Boulevard, across from the Fairfield Inn.

At Monday night’s meeting, the city commission granted other businesses up to 30 days to submit an RFP to do the same. All RFPs will be considered by Marquette City Manager Karen Kovacs and referred to the Marquette City Commission before any final decision is made.

Marquette City Commissioner Jenna Smith was the lone ‘no’ vote at Monday’s meeting. Smith stated that she does not believe anything should be built on the lakeshore.

“I think the public has made it loud and clear at every turn that they are disappointed with some of the things that have happened down by One Marquette Place,” Smith explained.

Smith continued, “I would be shocked if they would like to see something like that on the lake side of the road.”

Meanwhile, Marquette City Commissioner Frederick Stonehouse said although the commission is allowing businesses to submit RFPs, the commission is not guaranteed to approve an RFP to develop the lot.

Rather, Stonehouse said the commission wants to hear what ideas developers may have for it. Stonehouse added that a development, like a hotel, would generate property tax revenue for the city.

“For the city to continue to fund those opportunities and those services that our citizens want, we really have to have the ability to pay for it and we do that through tax creation,” Stonehouse explained.

Marquette City Commissioner Jessica Hanley was not in attendance at Monday’s meeting due to illness.

Marquette residents and stakeholders are encouraged to attend an open house regarding the city’s master plan.

The open house takes place Wednesday, Feb. 15 from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Northern Center Ballroom.

There, the public can voice their thoughts on the city’s future plans.