A ceremony will be held Monday to recognize Howell as a Redevelopment Ready Community.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced today that for establishing a solid foundation to attract private investment and further build on municipality assets, the city of Howell has been awarded RRC certification. The MEDC will formally present the award at 6pm Monday, Feb. 11, at City Hall, prior to the 7pm City Council meeting, to recognize the city’s new designation.

Howell joins 29 other communities, including the Village of Pinckney, that have qualified as “thoroughly prepared” when it comes to planning and zoning to remove traditional barriers and promote opportunities for prospective investors.

“Our mission at MEDC is to empower communities so they can proactively shape their future; a future built on a solid foundation of retaining and attracting business investment and talent,” said MEDC Senior Vice President Katharine Czarnecki. “We look forward to building upon our relationship with the city and supporting them in their local efforts."

As an RRC participant, the City of Howell received a comprehensive assessment that measured current community and economic development practices compared to RRC best practice standards. The program evaluates and certifies communities that integrate transparency, predictability and efficiency into economic development practices. Certification status is a compelling indicator that a community has removed development barriers and streamlined processes to be more competitive and attractive to investors.

“The Redevelopment Ready Communities certification will help us build on Howell's Great American Main Street status, further aiding our efforts to plan for future development city-wide,” said Howell Mayor Nick Proctor. “MEDC has been a valuable partner in marketing Howell as a destination for businesses, investors, and residents. We look forward to continuing to collaborate with the MEDC on future development initiatives that will make Howell a strong and economically viable city for years to come.”

Howell achieved certification in just less than two years. In that time, officials say Howell increased the user-friendliness of the development-review process, adopted overarching marketing and economic development strategies, and began marketing priority redevelopment sites in collaboration with Howell Main Street, Ann Arbor Spark, Livingston County Economic Development Corporation, Howell Area Chamber of Commerce and the MEDC. With those improvements, they say Howell is positioned to improve the quality of life for residents and attract business investments and talented workers from across the country. (JK)