Historic Copper Country Building Grant Update

Hancock City Officials are still awaiting word on a grant to restore a historic downtown building.

Members of the Michigan State Housing Development Authority toured 116 Quincy Street on January 6th.

The building was severely damaged in a 2009 fire that killed four people.

The city had considered demolishing the site but funds were not available. Grants could be obtained to renovate, however, if the building met certain criteria by the state.

Those requirements are that the building be in significantly poor shape, that it be located in the core downtown area, and that the building is historic.

116 Quincy Street appears to meet all of these specifications.

“None of us, a few years ago, ever dreamed that there was even a possibility that the there was going to be a rehabilitation of that building,” said Hancock Mayor William Laitila. “Now it looks like a very real possibility.”

The Mayor continued with high praise for local developer Mike Lahti, who helped save the building by purchasing it.

“The plans that he has for that building are really quite remarkable. It will be definitely an upscale development with a commercial development at the street level on Quincy Street but then loft type apartments—really something very unique.”

A decision by the state concerning the grant is expected in roughly 45 days.

By Rick Allen