MUSKEGON, MICH. - The Piano Factory has been a staple in Muskegon since 1890 and according to local historians, was the first Factory built as the lumber era was ending.
Although the Business closed in 1929 and has been vacant for eight years, neighbors said this building is a unique and important piece of history
"We care about history, we've seen so many buildings in Muskegon be torn down and that makes us very sad and a lot of people are upset about that," said the founder of the Save the Chase-Hackley Piano Factory Group, Alicia Grennan. "So, it's time to step up when there is a possibility of saving a building and actually save it."
The Pure Muskegon investment group anticipates the structure being torn down during the fall.
"We met with Pure Muskegon the people that own the group, and they were very nice and this is nothing against them," Grennan explained.
According to Grennan, the investment group hasn't found a developer for the 120-acre property. Investors and developers also said the cost of restoring the property is upwards of $8 million -- making it too much to renovate.
"If we found the right [developer], they could develop it to its potential," a neighbor said.
A few weeks ago, commissioners rejected the request from citizens to delay demolition of the building until a committee can study its historical value.
"I love history, I love Muskegon. I love seeing the old beautiful buildings," Grennan told us. "I grew up three blocks from here so it's part of my life as was the paper mill."
"To lose history is not okay -- once it's gone, it's gone forever, you can't get it back."
This group has created a petition with currently more than 800 signatures. The group will gather at the commission meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 22, at 5:30 p.m., to continue to discuss the building's plans with the city.
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