Lansing: the good, the bad and the ugh

Accident Fund headquarters


The good

The new Accident Fund headquarters-it’s amazing what some vision, millions of dollars and few tax breaks can do.

Occupy Lansing and the city officials who supported it rather than busting heads

An informed electorate which passed a much needed millage for police, fire and transportation needs

The Armory project by developer Pat Gillespie-great reuse of former military space (whatever happened to the plans for the South Washington Armory?)

Lansing City Pulse and New Citizen’s Press both celebrating 10 years of alternative journalism

The Eli Broad Museum holds plenty of promise for a reinvigorated arts community in Lansing. Let’s not forget the rest of us

The Ingham County Land Bank

The Capital Area District Library

Old Town and the nearby restoration of the School for the Blind. It’s a gem

Board of Water and Light investment in REO Town (I’ll ignore the bigger issue of clean coal)

An Olympic hopeful from Dewitt Michigan

General Motors and its UAW workers continuing to turn out the best cars in the U.S.


The bad

A feuding Lansing City Council

Loss of two key city officials: Economic Development Director Robert Tresize and Chief of Staff and utility infielder Jerry Ambrose

The doctors, lawyers, lobbyists and businesses who will eat up the Snyder tax breaks while continuing to raise their rates

Lansing schools-it’s either this year or never

Assault on the working and middle class by the henchmen now in state government

Closing of the East Lansing Barnes & Noble, L&L groceries and the scores of mom and pop stores across the city leaving ugly, boarded up buildings. East Lansing City Centre is just pitiful. MSU needs to get into that arena and soon

Pie in the sky ideas like an aerotropolis’ over neighborhoods and an arts and performance center in downtown Lansing

One more year of looking at the Oliver Towers. How long has it been now?

Hooligans and criminals in downtown Lansing

Higher taxes for retirees and the middle class



And the ug

A proposal to sell the old Waverly golf course for a cemetery. Hopefully that idea will be dead on arrival

Political campaigns with winners and losers based on who has the largest sack of gold

Road construction this coming year

The Lansing City Market (how it looks, not what it does, especially in contrast to its new neighbor across the river)

Corporate media which continues to shill for business, anti-tax trade groups and the war economy


Bill Castanier has been an award-wining weekly newspaper editor, advertising and public relations executive in his 40 year career. In addition, he has been an executive with a newspaper trade association and founded Michigan’s first technology association, I-TE@M. He writes a weekly newspaper feature on Michigan authors and is on the Board of the Kerrytown BookFest and the Michigan Notable Book Awards. He has the only daily blog on Michigan literature (Mittenlit) and founded

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