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WARREN, MI-Michigan’s third largest city is putting together a new directory of vacant commercial and industrial properties in the city in a move hoped to spur development. Warren, a Detroit suburb, has some office space, but is mostly known for its industrial corridors, primarily related to the auto industry. It is home to the sprawling GM Technical Center, a GM transmission plant and two major Chrysler plants.

“When (interested parties) call up looking for a 150,000-sf building with high bays, we need to be able to provide them with a list of possibilities in the city of Warren,” says George Dimas, the city’s economic development director.

The city’s catalogue of vacant commercial and industrial properties could help the community attract new businesses and bolster its economy, Dimas says. Since taking the job as Warren’s economic development director, Dimas has averaged spending one day a week driving around the city conducting an audit of vacant commercial and industrial properties.

When he finds a vacant building or a building up for sale, he records all of the pertinent information. He’s covered about 40% of the city so far, he said. Dimas hopes to wrap up gathering all of the information for the catalog by Aug. 1.

Once he’s finished, Dimas plans to enter all of the information into a computerized file and make it available to residents and businesses interested in relocating to Warren, he says.

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