Fruitport Twp., Mich.— The Little River Band of Ottawa Indians (LRBOI) and Dirk Stone Real Estate held a groundbreaking ceremony today for their housing development project in Fruitport Township. The development is called Odeno, which means “a place of many hearts” or a “village” in the Tribe’s native Anisinaabe language.
The event kicked off at 11 A.M. at the site of the future housing development, located just south of the corner of Mt. Garfield and South Sheridan in Fruitport Township. The Little River Band plans to develop the site in five phases, with the first phase including 115 new homes.
The housing development is open to the general public and will feature homes ranging from starter homes of $150,000 to larger homes with walkouts and other additional features to $300,000.
The groundbreaking featured several speakers as well as a drum ceremony. Among those speaking were Tribal Ogema Larry Romanelli and Fruitport Township Supervisor Heidi Tice.
Fruitport Community Schools formally owned the 120-acre parcel. The school district determined it did not need the property and sold it to the Tribe in 2016. The housing development will provide homes for 300 new families while returning the land to the tax rolls, providing additional funds to the local school district and community.
“Our goal was to work with the local community to develop a unique village that offers homes of different sizes and amenities for first time home buyers, retirees and growing families in the area,” said Larry Romanelli, Tribal Ogema of the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians. “Odeno will be a special place where residents will enjoy living in energy efficient homes in a community with ponds, parks, natural areas and walkways.”
The Odeno development is a collaborative economic development investment in the Fruitport community to further help Fruitport stand out as a community of choice for people of all ages, professions and income levels.
Harmony, Fulfillment, Beauty and Connection to the Earth
The Tribe followed the guiding cultural principles of harmony, fulfillment, beauty and connection to the earth in the design and development of the housing project. Some of the unique features include:
- Twenty-six percent of the land (31.4 acres) will remain open and include natural areas, parks with gazebos, wildlife corridors, water and walking trials.
- Stevens Creek runs alongside the site and will be incorporated into the development design.
- The homes will be built using the most modern energy efficiencies in their design and operation.
- Building and construction plans will include homes for those with special needs.
Construction is expected to begin in late April or early May.
The Little River Band is working with Dirk Stone Real Estate Company of Grand Haven to market the properties.The Little River Band of Ottawa Indians was reaffirmed as a federally recognized Tribe in 1994. They have offices in Manistee and Muskegon County. The largest concentration of Tribal members live in Muskegon County.