When businesses decide to open up shop in the Marquette area, they have a decision to make: downtown or township?

Some businesses begin in one and discover that the other might offer better prospects. One such example is The Safety Store, which was in business in downtown Marquette for ten years before migrating to the US-41 corridor in the township.

“One of the big motivators, moving from in town out to the township, was the parking,” The Safety Store owner David Allie said. “A lot of our customers stressed that it was hard to find parking downtown, even though there is a lot of parking, but you have you walk a little bit for it. People were looking for parking in front of the stores.”

Allie said some of the differences he’s noticed include the customers who come in and the communication that takes place between businesses. The township prides itself on being accommodating to new and migrating businesses through efficient planning and zoning.

“Marquette Township continues to have sustainable growth,” township supervisor Dennis Liimatta said. “We grow at an average of 10% in state-equalized value per year and have maintained that growth for the last decade and a half.”

The township’s growth is due in part to a lower tax rate, available land and its location along US-41.