ROYAL OAK, MI-Developer Alliance-Marsh recently met with city residents to discuss updates to its $7-million plan to revitalize the former Big Boy restaurant property on Woodward Avenue on the city’s north side. Alliance-Marsh plans to build an 18,000-sf development at the site, which will include national, high-end retail, coffee and restaurant companies and a financial institution.

Alliance-Marsh, which purchased the property at 31805 Woodward Ave. just south of Normandy, says it also plans to “green out” the area with grass and trees around the center and nearby residential property, reduce noise and improve lighting and aesthetics compared to the current site. Alliance-Marsh executives held a similar meeting earlier this year, called and personally met with area homeowners, and delivered letters to residents and the neighborhood associations to outline the plans for the property.

“The support of the area by residents for this high-quality development is very important to us,” says Ryan S. Marsh, COO of TH Marsh Construction Co. and a principal of Alliance-Marsh. “We have made several adjustments to our site plans to accommodate many of their concerns.”

“This Lifestyle Leisure Center-type development will be a first-class site with class A tenants and high-quality architecture that will be a monumental improvement for the location,” says Cary Gitre, president of Alliance Real Estate Services and a principal of Alliance-Marsh. “It will fit nicely with Royal Oak’s master plan and Woodward Avenue’s designation as a National Scenic Byway, and will become a centerpiece of what could be a new benchmark in structural designs on Woodward.”

Gitre added that this upscale development is far better than the alternative for the site, which could include a typical strip mall, 24-hour stores, a gas station, auto dealership or fast food restaurant. Construction of the single-story retail center is dependent upon approval by the city council. Alliance-Marsh says it is hoping to complete the project this year.

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