Deeds and WeedsJuly 14, 2009

Michigan Development Heads to Bankruptcy Court

Macatawa Legends, a $25 million residential golf development in Holland Township, Mich., heads to bankruptcy court this week, a victim (it seems) of a recesson-choked real estate market and the moribund national economy. The Holland (Mich.) Sentinel has the story here.

Six-year-old Macatawa Legends is a 500-acre property with more than 500 homes and condo sites, a clubhouse and a 7,254-yard Rayond Hearns-designed golf course that opened in 2005. But the project has struggled and the golf course and clubhouse were taken over in May by Macatawa Bank, the lendor on the project. The bank claims it is owed $18 million by Macatawa Legends' developers, Partner's Fore.

Of course, sometimes a trip to bankruptcy court can be the beginning of a turnaround, and at least one person -- local realtor Jack Bouman, who works for Coldwell Banker -- thinks that could be the case with Macatawa Legends.

"While [bankruptcy] is a horrible process, in terms of the losses a number of investors have taken and losses the bank has incurred, at this point I think it's going to fall into good hands," Bouman told the Sentinel. "I think it's a very strong step forward."

-- G.R.