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New restaurants, boutiques part of mixed-use plan for downtown Muskegon bank building

Posted By: mlive on June 24, 2023.  For more information, please click here to read the source article.

In downtown Muskegon, an old bank building that has sat vacant is being transformed into a mixed-use space that includes a restaurant collective with diverse cuisines and boutique retailers. The plan for the six-floor building, located at 221 W. Webster Ave., is for it to become the new home to a restaurant collective called The Vault, along with boutiques, private business tenants and a variety of co-working spaces.

The 2021 redevelopment plan for the building, at the time vacant four years, called for offices, commercial space and apartments.  Core Realty Partners is excited about the new plan and in the process of repurposing the space into a gathering spot, with the goal of keeping the old nostalgic flare of the former National Lumberman’s Bank of Muskegon, once the city’s oldest bank, constructed in 1962.

“The place has two big vaults in it, so we want to use that to kind of capitalize on the name,” said Troy Wasserman, co-partner at Core Realty Partners. “That’s where The Vault Food Collective came into play.”

The Vault concept will encompass the first floor of the building, where guests will be able to grab a drink from the bar and lounge in the common area equipped with a vapor fireplace or grab a bite to eat from four local food eateries.

There will be big and bright windows that align the entrance of the first floor, complementing the tall ceilings with a modern twist.  Planned for the second floor are retail boutiques, which overlook the first floor in a wide-open mezzanine similar to the Grand Rapids Downtown Market. Floors 3 to 6 of the former bank would be home to Core Realty Partners, Core Commercial, Brickley DeLong’s headquarters and various co-working spaces.

“We want the retail spaces to be unique brands that kind of go with the uniqueness of the food court,” Wasserman said. “We’ve been quite selective of what goes in there because we’ve had a couple of people that have approached us.”

In addition to the six-floor complex, there will be an outdoor courtyard to the left of the building. By the fall, it would be transformed into a space to eat or drink outside while enjoying live entertainment. Core Realty Partners is also behind the vision of the Northtown 794 building in Muskegon, which is home to popular spots including 794 Kitchen & Bar, Aldea Coffee and Capone’s Speakeasy and Restaurant.

The idea was to mirror a similar inviting space that kept the community and local businesses interested, Wasserman said. John Essex, who is the primary partner on the project, echoed the sentiment of connecting restaurants and cafes that reflect the diverse community along the lakeshore.

“We’re trying to get more restaurants and food offers that represent the entire community so we that we’ve got an eclectic mix,” said Essex. “It’s not just going to be the burger crowd or the craft beer crowd.”

The next step for the realty commercial company is securing a liquor license so that patrons can browse the retail boutiques with a drink in-hand as well as walk outside to the courtyard. Available co-working spaces will be set to move into July 15. Completion of the new multi-use space is set for October 2023. To learn more about the unique space, visit

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