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      Petoskey hopes to improve downtown through housing grant

      Downtown Petoskey before work starts on Lake Street.

      The City of Petoskey has applied for $489,700 in Michigan Housing Development Authority Rental Rehab Grant money.

      At Petoskey??s City Council meeting Monday Night, council members unanimously voted to approve the grant application for the Rental Rehab Grant.

      If the city is approved for the grant, owners of 316 E. Lake St. and 414 and 418 Waukazoo Avenue could receive $25,000 per existing downtown residential unit and $40,000 for each new residential unit.

      The owners of Lake St. property plan to build 6 new units on the second floor; while the owners of Waukazoo Ave. properties plan to renovate 7 apartments.

      ??It incentivizes building owners to develop their second stories which have remained empty in a lot of cases,?? said Petoskey Mayor Bill Fraser. ??By bringing people downtown to live it just energizes the whole downtown.??

      According to a City of Petoskey agenda memo, in order for the properties to be eligible for the grant, 51 percent of the residential units that utilize Rental Rehabilitation funds will have to be rented to people who annually make less than $36,750.