construction

Transportation
4:36 pm
Sat December 21, 2013

Below-ground work starts on Detroit light rail

Artist's conception of proposed Woodward Avenue light rail line
Credit M-1 Rail Detroit

DETROIT (AP) - Below-ground utility relocation is underway on a 3.3-mile light rail system that will run from Detroit's riverfront to the city's New Center area.

Officials for the M-1 Rail say crews are moving or replacing water catch basins, storm manholes and water main gate valves along Woodward Avenue.

The work is the initial step toward full construction activities on the streetcar system and is not expected to prevent customer access to local businesses.

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Politics & Culture
3:37 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Stateside for Monday, October 21st, 2013

There's a labor shortage in West Michigan. Construction jobs are going unfilled. We look at what that means for the housing industry and the economy as a whole. 

And, after this weekend's loss to the Boston Red Sox, Tigers Manager Jim Leyland announced he's stepping down today.

We found out more about the man who led the Tigers to win the last three AL Central Division titles.

Also, George and Ira Gershwin are important figures in the history of American music, but there has never been a definitive edition of their joint body of work, but now the Gershwin family is teaming up with the University of Michigan to change that.

We spoke to the editor-in-chief of the George and Ira Gershwin Critical Edition to find out more.

First on the show, Bridge Magazine is taking a close look at the challenges Michigan faces as we try to improve our education system.

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Stateside
2:11 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Michigan is experiencing a construction labor shortage

hstreetagent

In the depths of the Great Recession, here are words that we thought we might never hear again - "Help Wanted."

Construction jobs are going begging.

Five years ago, Michigan’s construction industry was fighting to stay alive.

Now it’s on the rebound, but home builders say they need more workers. And they’re not finding enough folks apparently willing to put in a hard day’s work on a construction site. The Grand Rapids Community College's residential construction program only drew five students.

What’s with the construction labor shortage?

John Bitely is the President and Owner of Sable Homes in Grand Rapids, and he joined us today along with Donald Grimes. Grimes is a senior research associate with the University of Michigan, specializing on economic forecasting and regional economic development in Michigan.

Listen to the full interview above.

Politics & Government
1:50 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

Government shutdown postpones construction at Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge

U.S. Rep. John Dingell (D-MI 12th District), with Youth Conservation Corps members at an event at the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge in 2011.
USFWSmidwest Flickr

Construction for the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge’s new visitor center has been delayed, due to the ongoing partial federal government shutdown.

As the Associated Press’s David Runk reported, construction for the refuge’s 12,000 square foot center was slated to begin Wednesday, but the temporary hold on federal funds postponed the project.

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Business
11:39 pm
Wed June 19, 2013

Union: Michigan home builders not telling the truth when they claim there's a labor shortage

hstreetagent

A major union is disputing claims by Michigan’s home builders that there are not enough skilled workers to fill all the jobs in the state’s resurgent construction industry.

New home prices are up in Michigan this year. Building permits are also up.

But the Home Builders Association of Michigan released a survey last month claiming a deep gap between the number of skilled trades workers and the jobs available.

That’s not true, according to Mike Jackson.   He’s the Secretary-Treasurer of the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights.

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Economy
8:56 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Michigan home builders more optimistic

Steve Carmody Michigan Radio

Michigan’s home builders are more optimistic now than they’ve been in several years.

A new survey by the Home Builders Association of Michigan shows improving housing starts and other trends give home builders and remodelers hope that they're emerging from the recession.    He says some markets, like Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor, are already seeing an increase.

“Trends are all trending upward,” says Robert Filka, the association’s CEO, “We’re very optimistic about the outlook for the industry.”

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Economy
11:34 am
Thu August 26, 2010

Home sales sign of improvement in Michigan's economy

A home being built in Norfolk, VA
Ryan Steinhour U.S. Navy

(by Rina Miller, Michigan Radio)

Michigan actually fared better in new home sales than other parts of the nation.  Some economists say improvements in the auto industry are helping stabilize Michigan's economy.