About the Act
The Corridor Improvement Authority Act (CIAA) was passed by the Michigan legislature in 2005 and amended in 2007. It provides for the creation of a public economic development corporation that will work to "correct and prevent deterioration in business districts, encourage historic preservation, promote economic growth." The act requires that all corridor improvement authorities allow for mixed use and high density residential, that they expedite permitting, and that they support non-motorized transportation. It also allows multiple municipalities to collaborate and establish one, unified authority.
Working together, different local units of government that share a corridor are able to leverage their investment by defraying some of the costs of redevelopment and sharing resources that can be invested in improvements. A multiple jurisdiction corridor improvement authority also embraces the fact that many of the challenges facing communities ignore political boundaries and should be addressed through regional cooperation.
About the Authority
The authority itself is a body corporate that may, among other things, secure funding for improvement projects; acquire, improve and operate real property; and develop plans to protect the properties from deterioration and promote economic growth in the development area. These initiatives can be quite broad and can serve to improve the aesthetics of the corridor by installing new landscaping, burying utility lines, or improving building facades. The authority can also work to improve the function of the corridor by marketing and supporting corridor businesses, improving transportation systems, and improving way finding.
A board composed of local property owners, residents, and business owners, will oversee these projects and act as responsible stewards of the Authority’s resources.