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East Express | April 2, 2020




The Community Center, Public Safety lobby and the Public Works Complex remain closed to the public until further notice. Additionally, all City and School District playgrounds are closed until further notice as recommended by the Kent County Health Department.

East Grand Rapids parks and outdoor athletic facilities remain open at this time; however, citizens must adhere to the Governor’s Executive Orders as well as maintain social distancing of six feet or more and other guidance to help stop the spread of COVID-19. If we continue to see gatherings and contact sports at athletic fields, we may be forced to close all public spaces.  Please talk with your middle school and high school students about the need to maintain proper distance and to not gather in groups of more than 10 people and set a good example for them.

Essential city operations continue with most staff members reporting to work and available to answer your questions via phone and email. We ask that you use our 24/7 drop box for payments and to utilize online payment options and our service request portal for routine items. 

Please note that both Public Safety and Public Works are still at full staffing and taking precautions as directed by their job duties. As always, dial 9-1-1 if you have a police, fire or medical emergency, or if you need immediate assistance due to a water or sewer emergency. 

To keep up to date on all COVID-19 information regarding City operations, including closures and cancellations, please visit our COVID-19 news article which is updated regularly


Dear Friends & Neighbors, 

I hope this note finds you all healthy and well. 

To say that these are unprecedented times is an understatement. None of us has experienced anything like this in our lifetimes. I know these days can be frustrating and confusing, and we all long for things to be “normal” again. Just please remember this will pass and I am confident that we will get through this together. 

I would like to extend a very big and heartfelt thank you to all of our City staff, Public Works and Public Safety employees. There is no playbook for what we are going through, and these people have kept our community safe and City services running seamlessly. This is nothing short of amazing and I couldn’t be more grateful. 

Another very big thank you to all of our healthcare workers and first responders. You are truly on the front lines of this pandemic, performing miracles and keeping us healthy and safe every day. Please know that our entire community is tremendously thankful for your work and sacrifices. 

I will still continue to hold my EGR Talk, and this month I’m going virtual — I hope you can join in on Monday, April 13 at 5 p.m. via Zoom. (Meeting ID: 942 052 781)  

Also in April, get ready for some trivia fun! Each week throughout this social distancing period, we will be quizzing you about some of our Gaslight Village businesses, and you can win some awesome prizes! Stay tuned for more details. 

Lastly, please continue to stay home as much as possible and practice social distancing when you are out. These protocols are still the simplest ways we can help keep ourselves and our community safe. 

As a reminder, the City will continue to follow the CDC, the State of Michigan and the Kent County Health Department’s direction. If you do not already follow the City on Facebook and Twitter, subscribe to our e-newsletter or visit our website, I encourage you to do so as we will keep you posted on any potential closures here at City Hall. 

Stay healthy! 



Due to the COVID-19 outbreak and Governor Whitmer’s Stay Home, Stay Safe orders, the City utilized video conferencing via Google Hangouts as allowed by Executive Order 2020-15 for the Monday, March 30 City Commission meeting. You can view it by visiting our YouTube channel

As a reminder, the April 6 meeting was previously rescheduled for March 30 to accommodate spring break traveling.  

Please stay tuned for a decision on how we will conduct the April 20 meeting. 


Carefully monitoring COVID-19 and following the guidance of federal, state and local health authorities, the U.S. Census Bureau has adjusted its operations schedule for the 2020 Census. Take a look by visiting the official census website and remember to take the census.  

PS Lights


Even with the Stay Home, Stay Safe orders in place, Public Safety has your kids’ birthdays covered. Our officers would like to send them some birthday cheer by stopping in front of your home with one of the police cruisers and/or fire trucks with lights and sirens activated for a few moments so your children can see the emergency vehicles from a distance. A few things to note: 
  • We will still need everyone to keep their distance in order to remain safe. 
  • We will try our absolute best to make it to everyone’s requests, however emergency calls for service and staffing may affect our ability to respond to everyone. 
  • We will schedule the visits between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and if staffing allows, between 1 and 5 p.m. on Saturdays 
  • We will do this for residents that live within the City limits of East Grand Rapids. 
Please email Captain Ric Buikema at to request the date and time through April 30. 



Visit our construction webpage — which is updated weekly — for current information on construction projects in EGR.  The State of Michigan has determined that certain infrastructure projects are permitted within the Executive Order and if any changes are required the City will adhere to them. 


Weekly curb-side yard waste collection will begin on Monday, April 6. As a reminder, for the start of spring pickup, the placement of loose leaves in the street is NOT permitted. 

To view our guidelines and for additional information, please visit our Refuse Collection webpage or call Public Works Operations at 616.940.4870.    


Please note that City crews fill potholes on a routine basis. When there are freeze and thaw cycles, crews are out on a more frequent basis as these weather cycles cause potholes. 

To report potholes in EGR, residents can contact Public Works at 616.940.4870 or report them online by going to and selecting the “submit a request” icon on the home page.  

Gaslight Village



It’s still possible to support our local businesses amidst COVID-19. Many of our restaurants remain open to provide take out and delivery. Remember, these are the businesses that sponsor local and school events and a huge part of what makes our community so vibrant.  

Please visit individual business Facebook pages and/or websites for daily offerings and modified hours or closure information. 



Are your kids looking for an adventure? To help boost the mood and incorporate exercise, KDL is hosting an outdoor Seek & Find for children to complete while we spend time social distancing. Those participating are to find the spots where these photos were taken across the City while still maintaining a distance of six feet. When the EGR library re-opens, all your kids have to do is tell the staff they’ve found each location to earn a special sticker or temporary tattoo! 

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