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Real Estate Development

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Miller Canfield represents some of the world's largest developers, local development companies, and everyone in between. We work alongside our corporate and tax departments to develop transactional structures that best meet each client's financial and operational business objectives. This allows us to tailor all parts of a transaction to meet the client's objectives in a coordinated, comprehensive and cost-efficient way.

Whether through aiding in the planning process, pursuing economic development and tax incentives, or providing cost-efficient due diligence to determine feasibility, representing developers is at the core of Miller Canfield's real estate practice. 

Represented Michigan State University in Phase II of the development of MSU's Medical Mile campus in downtown Grand Rapids. Our P3 team drafted and negotiated the development agreement and the long-term ground lease that will enable the plans for the building to move forward, as well as an occupancy lease. Our team also had to solve environmental considerations, bond and other financing issues (including blockchain questions), bankruptcy, real estate development, state and local tax, gifting and university law issues, and the relationship between public institutions and private entities, including related constitutional questions.

Miller Canfield's team led a true public/private partnership effort on behalf of our client to acquire and redevelop the historic Willow Run brownfield site in Ypsilanti Township, Michigan, into the American Center for Mobility (ACM), a nonprofit research facility focused on autonomous vehicle operations testing and validation. The 335-acre site was of historical significance as it was the manufacturing facility at which Ford Motor Company built B-24 Bombers during World War II. The site was used as an automobile manufacturing facility after the war and remained operational until the 2000s, but had since been abandoned and by that point was one of the most environmentally challenged properties in Michigan. We were able to coordinate cooperation between numerous state and local partners, such as the State of Michigan, through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, which invested $60 million into the project. The site is currently operational and in use by numerous OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers. Miller Canfield's team now actively assists the client and ACM with current and future planned development. 

Led legal team on $650 million Little Caesars Arena sports facility and related development located in Detroit, Michigan. The project is one of the most significant public-private partnerships in the Midwest, and is expected to generate $1.8 billion in economic development and 1,100 permanent jobs in the area. Related work involved real estate, land acquisition, title clearance, environmental, legal structuring, multi-level economic incentives, planning, zoning, financing, leasing, special legislation, tax-exempt bonds, architect agreements, construction and labor.

We represented a national medical clinical diagnostic company with the design and construction of a state-of-the-art, 250,000 sq. ft. clinical laboratory. Miller Canfield has been involved in every stage of the planning, development, design and construction of the new facility. We negotiated the design and construction agreements, participating in the RFP and vetting process to ensure our client engaged with partners that would deliver the project on time and on budget. Beyond the design and construction aspect of the project, Miller Canfield also consulted on the land acquisition and economic incentives. 

We counseled a major tire manufacturer through all real estate development aspects of its first new truck and bus tire plant construction in more than 10 years. This plant is an essential part of the company's growth strategy and involves a long term investment of over $1.4 billion, with 2,500 jobs expected to be created.

Handled the development and construction of a new state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in South Carolina involving over $500 million in capital investment, including federal, state and local incentives.

Represented corporate real estate group in obtaining over $68 million in grants, tax abatements, tax credits, and recovery zone economic development bonds for manufacturing plant located in North Carolina.

Represented manufacturing company in obtaining over $58 million in tax abatements, job training grants, and other incentives for new alternative energy related facility. Also handled lease acquisition and construction contracts for project in Kansas.

Represented the construction manager in connection with construction of Ford Field football stadium located in Detroit, Michigan.

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