CWD & Artists Partner to Bring Murals to Boarded Storefronts in Downtown Grand Rapids

June 4, 2020

CWD Real Estate Investment has partnered with Lions and Rabbits to bring vibrant murals to the boarded storefronts in Downtown Grand Rapids. The art will spotlight local artists while commemorating the comradery that took place during the clean-up effort this past Sunday.

After the events that unfolded late Saturday night, Downtown Grand Rapids was left with significant damage to prominent storefronts throughout the city. However, on Sunday morning, the community came together to help clean up the aftermath. By mid-afternoon, streets and sidewalks were swept of debris and storefronts were boarded up.

While the boards act as an effective temporary measure to protect the already damaged storefronts, they detract from much of the lively energy Grand Rapids has come to inhabit. To help restore some of this energy, CWD has partnered with Lions and Rabbits to bring back the artistic spirit our city embodies. Murals will be installed throughout the Downtown area’s damaged storefronts in an effort to inspire, invigorate, and remind the community of the city’s strength and unity.

“What happened here Saturday night was not unique to Grand Rapids. What happened next certainly was. On Sunday morning—literally before the sun was up, our community came out to repair the damage sustained,” said Sam Cummings, managing partner at CWD Real Estate. “The generosity and selfless beauty of what happened everywhere around our downtown inspired us again and again throughout the day. It is such a testament to what an amazing place West Michigan is.”

CWD is working to get windows cut and installed as quickly as possible, but until then, the firm wants people to feel comfortable being Downtown. With businesses beginning to re-open as a result of the Stay-At-Home orders being lifted, CWD wants to encourage people to continue supporting local businesses in and around Downtown Grand Rapids in their time of need.

As a result, the collaborative project will highlight some local artists while supporting the small businesses that were damaged, but above all, it will commemorate the tremendous display of community observed on Sunday.

“We wanted to memorialize and perpetuate that spirit of community by turning to local artists who will use their talents to express that beauty on the temporary enclosures while we wait to return to normal downtown,” said Cummings. “We are grateful for their involvement!”

Murals will begin appearing throughout Downtown Grand Rapids starting Friday, June 5th. The full list of CWD properties that will see mural installations include: 37 Ottawa, 40 Pearl, 50 Louis, 80 Ottawa, 111 Lyon, 125 Ottawa, 169 Monroe, 180 Ottawa, 201 Michigan and 250 Monroe.


CWD Real Estate Investment is a leading, local real estate investment and property management firm in Grand Rapids. Formed in 2008 by partners Sam Cummings, Scott Wierda, and Dan DeVos, CWD commits to strengthening the urban center and community of Grand Rapids by making strategic investments that provide high-quality places to work, eat, shop, live, and be entertained.