Well-wishers stand atop a US-131 overpass in April as a convoy of 23 trucks heads out from Wayland Hopkins Livestock Sale Barn to deliver supplies to ranchers devastated by wildfires that burned across the Panhandle of Texas to Oklahoma, Colorado and Kansas. (Photo by Ryan Lewis)

Year in Review: 2017 (Part 1)

Virginia Ransbottom, Staff Writer

The year 2017 brought twin towers to downtown Allegan’s Riverfront and some excitement over other investments in historic buildings for new and old businesses alike.

Straddling opposite banks of the river, Allegan Event Z!P built two towers for thrill seekers to take a 600-foot zipline ride across the Kalamazoo River and will be topping off the year with a ball drop from the 63-foot tower at Riverfront Plaza.

Proposed, paid for and operated by a subsidiary of Ropes Courses, based in Allegan, the company also received city approval for an indoor adventure course at the old Rockwell facility and is purchasing some Hubbard Street properties as well.

Building excitement for things to come, the ball also got rolling to sell several city-owned properties, including $2.6 million in potential investments lured downtown with the help of newly established Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Act tax certificates. The former Elks Lodge on Marshall Street was included in the tax district for investors to reopen as an events center.

Marshall Street itself was rehabilitated after being a bumpy mess. It was repaved and reconfigured to include a left turn lane to curb a high rate of left hand turn accidents.

But for many people, the most exciting project making progress through the year was Allegan District Library revealing design plans for renovations and additions approved by voters at an estimated $6.6 million.

Our Year in Review will conclude next week.

For the full Year in Review, pick up a copy of the Dec. 28 issue of The Allegan County News or subscribe to the e-edition.

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