Downtown Development Authority (DDA)

The Sparta DDA is dedicated to commercial district revitalization and improving the economic viability, beauty and historic significance of the DDA District.

What is the DDA District?

The DDA District is a group of parcels that are connected by a right-of-way. The DDA District Map (download below) shows how specific commercial parcels were included in the DDA District for development and improvement projects throughout the commercial districts in the Village.

Although commercial properties now exist outside the DDA District, they are not part of the DDA District. Most commercial properties outside the DDA are new growth and developments that have occurred after the formation of the DDA District .

The Village of Sparta Downtown Development Authority (DDA) was established by Village ordinance in 1992 under Michigan Public Act 197.

How is the DDA Funded?

The DDA district is funded by Tax Increment Financing. Properties that are within the DDA District and have increased in property value since the creation of the district are collected by the Downtown Development Authority.

Those incremental tax dollars from the increased property values are re-invested in downtown to stimulate growth and higher property values in other parcels. The property values from each property when the district was created still are collected by the funding authorities.

DDA board members volunteer their time to make educated decisions as stewards of the DDA District TIF dollars. DDA Board members are appointed to their positions by the Village President and approved by Village Council. Each DDA Board member must have a vested interest in the DDA District or a vested interest in the Sparta Area.

DDA Board and Meeting Information

DDA Board Members
Robert Whalen (Village President)
Kelly Potes
Nathan Benham
George Freeland
Mike Lamb
Pete Bush
Tom Cheslek
Kirk Jacobsen
Matthew Carpenter
Rex Baker
Janet Knauf
Robert Shangle


The Village of Sparta DDA regularly meets on the second Tuesday of every month at 7:45 a.m. at the Sparta Civic Center, located at 75 N Union Street. The public is encouraged to attend.

2021 DDA Public Information Meetings

The Sparta Downtown Development Authority will host two public information meetings this year. The first will be held on Tuesday, November 9th, 2021 at 7:45 a.m. The second will be held Tuesday, December 14th, 2021 at 7:45 a.m. Both meetings will be held in person at the Sparta Civic Center (75 N. Union) and streamed virtually via Zoom. The Zoom information is included below:

November 9th, 2021 Zoom Link - Click Here to Join
Webinar ID: 831 1460 3467
Passcode: 202543
Phone Call Options: (301)715-8592 or (312)626-6799

December 14th, 2021 Zoom Link - Click Here to Join
Webinar ID: 845 3916 1339
Passcode: 635123
Phone Call Options: (301)715-8592 or (312)626-6799

Sparta DDA, 2021 Planned Budget Pie Chart
Sparta DDA 2021 Planned Budget
  • Sparta DDA, 2021 Planned Budget Pie Chart
  • Sparta DDA, Priority Project Budget Pie Chart
  • Pie Chart, DDA Funding, Property Enhancement Grant

Board Meeting Minutes
Downtown Development Authority

Downtown Development Authority Contact Information

Downtown Development Authority Director: Elizabeth Morse

156 E. Division St.
Sparta, MI 49345

Phone:(616) 887-2454
Fax:(616) 887-1114
Email: Elizabeth Morse

Contracts

Waterworks Irrigation, for Irrigation/Garden Bed Maintenance
March 1, 2017-November 10, 2020

Request for Proposals

Below is a current list of RFP's (Request for Proposals) for the Village of Sparta DDA:

Facade Grant Information

The Sparta DDA created the Downtown Reinvestment Grant Program to encourage private investment in the business district. If you are interested in applying for a grant for work to be done to your building located in the DDA district please click the link below for the program information.

As Required by PA 57 of 2018, Sparta DDA is Pleased to Report the Following:

List of authority accomplishments, projects, investments, and promotional campaigns as per the objectives of the Development Plan and TIF plan.

Streetscape Improvements:

  • Landscaping improvements and site amenities maintenance including seasonal decorations
Nash Creek Enhancement:

  • Improvements to the bank of the creek, construction of bridge improvements and landscape improvements, and site amenities including plantings and decorative items Park Improvements:
  • Landscaping and decorative items
Improvements to and renovations of buildings:

  • Exterior rehabilitation of 194 E. Division and landscaping
  • Property Enhancement grant payment to 133 E Division for façade improvements
  • Grant approval and payment to exterior renovations of 10 Prospect, Sparta for façade and landscape improvements
Business Recruitment Marketing:

  • Developed Town Square retail incubator in vacant parking areas and implemented project to stimulate private investment and fill empty storefronts
  • Production and distribution of informational material about downtown businesses
As of December 31, 2019, the DDA had $41,809.63 in its fund balance. As the 2009 TIF + Development Plan describes, this balance is expected to contribute to the following projects which require a larger amount of investment:

  • Building Improvement and Redevelopment (long term projects through Property Enhancement Program Grants)
  • Nash Creek Enhancements (Acquiring property, installation of walkways and boardwalks, landscape improvements)
  • Streetscape Improvements (repayment of loan by Village of Sparta for improvements to the ROW in downtown Sparta 2009 project)
  • Improvements to and Renovations of Buildings (repayment of loan by Village of Sparta for purchase and demolition of building for redevelopment)