Violence in Downtown Grand Rapids is a Rising Source of Concern

As violent events grow, many downtown business owners take extra safety measures.
Two ladies were attacked with rebar on Saturday.

One victim was at Fountain and Ionia, while another was around Ottawa and Monroe Center.

Suspect ran But Immediately Caught

The suspect has mental health difficulties, said Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Winstrom.
“It’s a safe city, but like any downtown, there are issues,” Chief Winstrom said. “We’ll do what we can, but companies’ and citizens’ aid is appreciated.”

Chief Winstrom told East County Gazette on Tuesday that the number of attacks or public disturbances downtown has not increased, but not every call is logged.

Also read: Proposed Amphitheatre in Grand Rapids Continues on Track

Bill Bennett, proprietor of Elliott’s Newsstand in the McKay Tower, observed, “As the city grows, so do the difficulties.” “Everyone used to grumble about parking here.”

East County Gazette interviewed 12 downtown businesses on Tuesday, mainly off-camera.

Everyone we spoke with reported seeing more hostile or violent customers.
Many have added security and cameras.

“I never considered it, but I got a CPL license.” Bennett said Tuesday, “I have a certificate to activate it.” Downtown shopping should never reach this point.

While Bennett has no intentions to leave his company soon, another downtown shop closed on November 4, citing safety concerns.

Ambiance GR Kitchen & Lounge on Pearl will launch in 2021.

Their article added, “The economic environment and recurrent safety challenges downtown have led us to reassess our large, continuous commitment to this facility.” “Despite spending six figures on two certified and bonded security agencies (who performed a great job),” “Inside Ambiance, we experienced few difficulties since we hired West Michigan’s top security staff.”

The undesirable loitering and elements on public roadways, sidewalks, and in the neighbourhood made it impossible for us to continue.

Also read: Classes will Resume In-Person at Grand Rapids School Following Worries About Falling Wall

The company worked with the city to improve safety.

Grand Rapids city spokesperson: “We’re sorry Ambiance is closing.” The city has dedicated time and efforts to make this unique enterprise a success and diversify our downtown.

Our public safety department has worked closely with them to resolve any security concerns. We’ll continue to encourage BIPOC businesses to make downtown Grand Rapids a great place to live, work, and play.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.