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Residents speak out as work begins at new Commerce Township development

Posted at 6:58 PM, Jun 28, 2024

COMMERCE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) — With the first stage of development beginning for Five and Main, the community is weighing in on the future of the Commerce Township area.

Five & Main Lifestyle Center In Commerce Township will be 45 acres of land and is anticipated to be approximately 275,000 square feet of lifestyle center space.

Current site plans include retail, restaurants, shopping, entertainment, and residential communities developed by RB Aikens and Associates.

"We think that there's a major void on the west side of Oakland County for a lot of tenants that are either not in the market at all or located in Somerset or Birmingham," said Bruce Aikens, Developer at RB Aikens and Associates, LLC.

It's a plan that's been underway for years, said Township Development Director Dave Campbell.

"This is a project that the township has envisioned for the better part of 10 years going back to when the Downtown Development Authority and the township worked with the state with the county on constructing Martin Parkway and the big roundabout at M-5 and Pontiac trail. This project of this scale has always been envisioned for this this site, and to finally see them breaking ground on it is really exciting. A lot of hard work by a lot of folks led to this and to see it actually happening now is really exciting for the township," said Campbell.

Some community members have expressed excitement like Matteo Ruffino.

Other community members like Lynne Buscemi who has lived in the township for 30 years has a host of concerns surrounding crime, road safety, wildlife preservation, and maintaining the vibe of the town.

She says animals are moving into the community due to increased development in the area.

"I think we need to think about this a lot more and stop worrying about trying to develop a small town into a big town," said Buscemi.

Buscemi worries about safety at the roundabout at the intersection, citing a number of accidents.

Campbell says the township is aware of residents' concerns about traffic and roads and that are in constant communication with stakeholders about best safety practices.

They plan to install a smart light at the intersection on Walnut, which would lead to the entrance of Five and Main.

Continental Properties also broke ground on Springs at Five & Main, an upscale garden-style residential community.

Aikens expects the process to work in phases and be open to the public during the summer of 2025.