The words “buy local” mean many things to many people, but what it really boils down to is the choice to support your neighbor in his or her business venture.
Owning a business is scary, and growing one is even scarier.
So every once in a while it’s nice to tell the story of someone local who not only has succeeded, but also has ascended to the level of setting an example for others.
Guy Bazzani, founder of Bazzani Building Co. in Grand Rapids, is one of those people.
Craig Clark, owner of Clark Communications here in town (another local business!), dropped us a line explaining a national campaign launched last week by Deluxe Corp., one of the largest check suppliers in the world, in celebration of the company’s 100th anniversary.
The campaign, called Small Business Revolution, spotlights 100 businesses across the country that are giving back to their communities in a variety of ways. The campaign can be seen at smallbusinessrevolution.org.
“They were the only company in the state to be selected,” Clark said of Bazzani, which is No. 59 on the list of 100.
Bazzani designs and builds high-performance green buildings in urban neighborhoods, with the goal of revitalizing communities and inspiring local businesses to collaborate and thrive.
Bazzani followed in the footsteps of his father, also an entrepreneurial builder, and saw the industry as a way to improve his neighborhood in Grand Rapids and others like it.
“I decided to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem,” he said.
“The construction and development business is a lot of destruction before you get to something constructive.”
That’s why the company approaches its work as giving back rather than taking away. Bazzani said his company makes sure to preserve historic buildings and incorporate green buildings into existing communities, making them healthier places to live and play.
Despite the recognition, nothing makes Bazzani happier than the relationships he’s built and the positive growth he’s witnessed in the community.
“As a small business owner, you rely on the close relationships you build. You build them well and you hope they last through the rough times. And they certainly have for us.”
Read full article: http://www.grbj.com/articles/83029-street-talk-local-revolution
GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Developers are seeking city approval this month to build a rooftop deck and parking structure at the iconic Kingsley Building in Eastown as part of a plan to convert the upper floors to market-rate apartments.
Baird Hawkins of Bazzani Associates said the special land use request before the Planning Commission on July 9 represents the start of a second phase of work on the historic building at 1415 Lake Drive SE.
The five-sided art deco-style building was built in 1926 and designed by famed architect George S. Kingsley. Bazzani Associates began a redevelopment project in 2011 that reopened the ground floor to retail tenants.
Exported From Michigan, a film which features local MIchigan leaders including Guy Bazzani from Bazzani, has been accepted into the 2015 Waterfront Film Festival / ArtPrize On Screen! The festival runs from September 23 to October 11 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
ArtPrize is an international art competition that is featured in the documentary. Specific screening times and dates will be announced in August. Stay tuned!
For more information about the film and watch a preview visit: http://www.exportedfrommichigan.com/