Just a few more years.
We were in Michigan for the past ten days….below is Muskegon….
A fine harbor on Lake Michigan. Ships enter Muskegon Lake through the channel. The city and port are at the top of the photo. In its heyday, 50-70 ocean-going ships visited Muskegon annually….traveling from the Atlantic through the St.Lawrence Seaway to the Great Lakes. There are still deep water ships that enter the Great Lakes, but few visit Muskegon.
This trip will be one of the last to my hometown. In some respects it was discouraging. As I wrote before, Muskegon is a Midwest industrial town. Manufacturing bowling balls, tank engines, automotive engine blocks, office equipment, piston rings and cranes was its mainstay. For the most part, manufacturing on a large scale no longer exists….that’s not say there are not specialty manufacturers and those that remain are pretty good.
Over time, the story was always the same….just wait a few years….Muskegon will really grow. Well that hasn’t happened.
Signs like this are so numerous….at least the sign companies are doing well….that it looks like anything other than prosperity. The infrastructure is in poor shape. The housing stock is old. The old downtown area was completely torn down and new buildings are slowly being erected. There is even a first class Harley-Davidson dealership in the new city center. However, as a sign of he times….a very nice airport….yet with only three daily flights to Detroit.
Exploring for the last time….I wondered if Muskegon would ever change. If so, it has to: Grow local businesses ( by implementing the concepts of Economic Gardening) and make Muskegon at least semi-attractive for businesses to even consider Muskegon and Michigan as a good place to do business.
Unfortunately, It may be more than just a few years for things to change.