Orion Twp. rated a 5-star community in iLabs study

By Jim Newell
Managing Editor
ORION TWP. — Orion Township has been recognized, along with 89 other communities across the state, as a 5-star community by the University of Michigan-Dearborn.
This is the sixth year in a row that Orion Township has been recognized in the eCities study as a five-star community.
In the annual eCities study conducted by researchers at iLabs, University of Michigan-Dearborn’s Center for Innovation Research, Orion Township was highlighted for its successes and efforts in contributing to Michigan’s entrepreneurial growth and economic development.
“I am extremely proud of the community orientation and entrepreneurial spirit of our business community. We work hard in economic development to attract investment that fits Orion Township in terms of employment opportunities, tax base, service, and established community planning objectives. It is with a sense of pride and great appreciation that the University of Michigan acknowledges our efforts with another year as a 5-Star rated community”, said Orion Township Supervisor Chris Barnett.
The eCities study analyzes publicly available data from 277 communities from 54 counties in Michigan. Researchers focused on the five-year changes in property values, community assets, and tax rates, which can demonstrate the growth, investments, and cost of doing business within the community, according to the researchers.
For example, over the five-year period of 2018-2022, these communities increased their capital assets by an average of 3.42% per year by investments such as park and road improvements, new police and fire equipment, and water system enhancements.
Further, these places are home to 87% of Michigan’s real commercial property and have 64% of the state’s total property value.
Although accounting for less than 20 percent of the state’s cities and townships, the 277 communities analyzed are home to 71 percent of Michigan’s population and 86 percent of the state’s commercial property.
“Each year, the eCities project aims to highlight the successes and continued commitment of cities and townships to grow business and support entrepreneurship within their communities,” said Kari Kowalski, iLabs project manager.
Learn more about eCities and download the full 2022 eCities study at umdearborn.edu.

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