'Viable offer' for former Spring Lake church

Marie Havenga • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:12 AM

“When you hear it, you’ll be very excited about it,” Frank Tamburello, the C3 finance committee chairman, said of the accepted offer. “We really feel good about this buyer.”

C3 officials listed the property for sale in May for $1.9 million after board members determined they could no longer afford the mortgage, utilities and maintenance.

The congregation moved its services to the Grand Haven Community Center on Sept. 25.

The board accepted an undisclosed offer last summer from a different buyer — a private party who formed an investment group with the hope of transitioning the property to commercial use, according to Tamburello. But that buyer declined to pay a $25,000 non-refundable fee after a 45-day due diligence period, he said.

C3 officials declined a request for a six-month extension from that purchaser. Tamburello said the prospective buyer would have needed rezoning from the Village of Spring Lake for the office and retail plan.

Tamburello said Sunday that it is his understanding that no rezoning would be necessary under the current buyer’s plan for the property.

The current zoning is public/semi-public — which allows for churches and related facilities, public and private schools, public parks, government offices, libraries, and museums, according to village zoning documents.

The buyer has until Dec. 27 to perform due diligence, according to Tamburello, then 30 days after that to close on the deal. He said the proceeds will allow C3 to pay off their mortgage in full, and have some “seed money” left over.

“It’s a very fair price to both them and us,” Tamburello said. “It’s better in many ways than the previous offer.”

C3 Exchange Board Chairwoman Judy Swanson said she is confident the “inclusive spiritual community” is on the right track.

“We’re beginning to thrive in this place,” Swanson said, standing in the Community Center gathering room. “I feel this was a good choice and a good move. We’re feeling happy to be moving forward.”

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