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Entrepreneurial injection


'We, as a business community, have the opportunity to be exceptional.' - Matthew Gibb



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Township Supervisor Matthew Gibb delivers his state of the township speech. Photo by Gabriel Ouzounian (click for larger version)
January 19, 2011 - Orion Township residents may be looking forward to an entrepreneurial injection.

As part of his state of the township address on Thursday, Jan. 13 at King's Court Castle in Canterbury Village, Orion Township Supervisor Matthew Gibb spoke to lengths on the improving relations between the township and businesses interested in opening in the area. He began by mentioning the reopening and potential expansion of the General Motors' Orion Assembly Plant.

"I think, here in Orion, we, as a business community have the opportunity to be very exceptional, and we're certainly going to get a lot of help with that," said Gibb. "General Motors is going to be reopening in the summer, there are rumors that they will be opening a third [production] line, the supply network for GM is built in Orion, and we plan to try and capture as much opportunity as there is out there."

Gibb went on to point out a number of features from Orion Township that made it intriguing from a business standpoint. One such feature was the "impressive work" of Downtown Development Authority (DDA) Executive Director Suzanne Perreault, and the DDA's efforts to promote and attract business to the downtown area.

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Another topic mentioned was businesses currently moving into Orion, the success of businesses already in Orion, companies expressing interest in a move to the area, and establishments that were using their success to expand.

"There's a Checkers opening on M-24 because we opened the door for the zoning process to make it cost effective to them, and this is great for small business owners because they shouldn't have to be thinking about these details when they're trying to open a new store," said Gibb. "Menard's has contacted us, Lowe's had contacted us, Walmart has contacted us, and additionally the Taco Bell that opened up on Baldwin Road has reported that they believe the new location will be one of the highest grossing stores in the state.

"We want to urge these business owners, successful or new, to come into [the township offices] when they need help."

Gibb also mentioned that a hardware store would be moving into the old CVS location at the intersection of Waldon and Baldwin Road.

The rest of the presentation focused mainly on Gibb's hope that new and existing businesses would contact the township with any kind of problem they had concerning their presence in Orion Township.

He said that the township's goal was to make Orion as appealing a place as possible to open a business, adding that owners already in Orion know that it's a great community to operate in.

"Lake Orion rallies to help itself, rallies to help each other, and rallies to help its businesses."

About 100 people attended the event, which was hosted by the Orion Area Chamber of Commerce.

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