Today on Current State: Update on fiscal conditions in Detroit and other U.S. cities; Lansing's historical Knapp's building renovation; MSU Theatre's production of "Widows"; Michigan native on her goal to make it to Mars; and Lansing Makers Network takes over city landmark.
Back in July when state officials filed for federal bankruptcy protection for Detroit, worries spiked about other fiscally troubled U.S. cities. Frank Shaforth is keeping an eye on several of those cities. Shafroth is a noted municipal finance expert coming to Detroit tomorrow to participate in the Michigan Municipal League’s annual meeting. Mr. Shafroth is a Professor of Public and International Affairs at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.
The massive renovation of the former J.W. Knapp department store continues in downtown Lansing. The historic 190,000 square foot building is being converted into a mix of retail and residential space. Architects and developers are being careful to keep some of the original charm of the 75-year-old landmark, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Current State’s Kevin Lavery spoke with Robb McKay, a historical architect with the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office. They walked through the old Knapp’s building, which is slated to re-open for business in February.
Over 200,000 people from around the world have volunteered to leave their life on earth behind to become part of the first human colony on Mars. The project titled Mars One aims to settle humans on the red planet by 2023. Current State’s Emanuele Berry found out that the people who will man this mission are everyday people like Michigan native, Erica Meszaros.
Over 100-years ago it was a church, its stairwell under the feet of countless young brides as they stood at the top and tossed their bouquets. Decades later, it was nightclub that laid claim to hosting some of the biggest national acts to come through Lansing. Then it was empty sitting unused. But not anymore.
There are some new tenants using Old Town’s Temple Building. Current State’s Becky McKendry took a trip to see just who’s been occupying the space.