LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Fresh grant money is being pumped into Michigan housing and placemaking projects.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s recommendation for $83.8 million worth of grants as part of the Revitalization and Placemaking Program was approved by the Michigan Strategic Fund.

The Revitalization and Placemaking Program uses $100 million in federal American Rescue Plan dollars to stimulate investments in projects that address the lasting negative economic impacts of COVID-19 in downtown areas and public spaces.

Projects supported by the program include investments that will repurpose vacant and underutilized office buildings, and other commercial and community spaces.

Around $1 million in public placemaking improvements was allocated for East Lansing and Grand Ledge. $6.7 million was allocated to Lansing – a portion of those funds will be used to renovate the former Walter French School.

“By putting federal funds to work to address the impacts of COVID-19, we are making a real impact on our families, our communities, and our small businesses,” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said. “I will work with anyone to keep getting things done and growing our economy.”