By Jim Newell
The Orion Area Chamber of Commerce is getting new digs, moving from its location in downtown Lake Orion to the Orion Center in June.
Under the deal with Orion Township, which owns the Orion Center, the chamber will pay $750 per month during its three-year contract. AThe deal also includes $18,000 worth of furniture build out, which the township will cover and own, even if the chamber leaves the Orion Center.
The township’s board of trustees and the chamber’s board of directors both approved the contract.
Chamber Executive Director Kim Urbanowski said she’s unsure of when in June the chamber will relocate, but the chamber will hold its June 7 picnic lunch at the Orion Center.
“We’ll be there in some capacity,” she said, adding the township is working this week on the space the chamber will occupy.
The chamber’s new offices will be in the lower level of the Orion Center and Urbanowski and the township hope the move will bring more foot traffic into the Orion Center.
Urbanowski said space and location were two of the important factors the chamber considered when deciding to relocate.
“We weighed all the pros and cons. We are definitely outgrowing the space we are in,” she said.
The chamber’s membership continues to grow and when the chamber would hold membership orientations or other meetings they would often have to use another facility. “We ended up doing a lot of our stuff at the Orion Center, anyway. There’s a conference room on the lower level and the banquet room upstairs,” Urbanowski said.
Location was another factor. With growing businesses and membership from the Brown and Baldwin roads corridors, Urbanowski said the Orion Center is more centrally located in the township and puts the chamber that much closer to all of its members.
When the chamber vacates its current location at 46 W. Shadbolt St., Urbanowski said there will be a great spot for any business that wants to relocate to the village.
The property is listed at Friedmanrealestate.com for any business that wishes to relocate to the village.
Urbanowski said the chamber also wants to become more of a welcome center so people can visit the office and have access to information on the Orion areas amenities, business and offerings in one location.
The June 7 luncheon is $25 and Urbanowski said it’s a great opportunity for anyone who wants to learn more about the chamber, meet the members and learn about the benefits of joining. Preregistration is required by calling the chamber at 248-693-6300 or online at orionareachamber.com.
By Jim Newell