Ortonville DDA, business owners discuss downtown

By Shelby Stewart
Staff Writer
The Ortonville Downtown Development Authority hosted a breakfast on Wednesday morning for local business owners to discuss what can be done to bring people into downtown Ortonville with members of Main Street Oakland County.
John Bry, principal planner for Main Street Oakland County, asked business owners to explain to him what in the downtown district works for the businesses and what needs to be improved upon.
“Some communities use their own branded lifestyle magazines/ shopping guides,” said Bry. “They publish them quarterly or they publish them seasonally. So that might be something the library, the school district, the DDA, the newspaper all join forces on to kind of develop a look and feel of your Ortonville area.”
Business owners agreed that some pressing issues for the village are lack of signs and marketing, parking during events meant to bring people into downtown and lack of sustainability with septic systems. Bob MacArthur, a member of the village planning commission, said that the current revision of the master plan does not include sewers.
Joe Frost, a member of Main Street Oakland County, says that the discussion of sewers needs to be brought up again.
“You kick the can five years, then in five years, you kick it again, now you’re at 10 years, pretty soon you’re 50 years into the 21st century and you don’t have something you could have had as early as the 40s,” said Frost.