Who is the State fairgrounds
Development Coalition (SFDC)

Our members and supporters are elected city and tri-county officials, farmers and animal trainers, educators, technical industry innovators, State Fair aficionados and former employees, librarians, lawyers, architects, landscape architects, urban planners, construction and factory workers and managers, realtors, doctors, community advocates, retirees, youth and more. Read more


 META Expo is a citizens-led vision and conceptual master plan for 21st century transit and economic development at the Michigan State Fairgrounds, in contrast to the current Big Box Shopping Center development proposal at this historic property. It was developed in response to a request by the State Fairgrounds Development Coalition.

It is a visual communication of the collective ideas of community members and a request for public sector participation and planning for our shared future. It is a community vision for shared prosperity. Read more

Who created the Meta Expo plan?

META Expo was created in partnership with the SFDC by GrowTown. Founded on the belief that good design makes life better, GrowTown is a non-profit Landscape Architecture studio dedicated to transforming neighborhoods and landscapes in post-industrial cities. Growtown believes that design and implementation of the Local Food Economy grows resilient and sustainable communities.

The Meta Expo plan that they created for SFDC has been honored with a prestigious American Society of Landscape Architects, Michigan Chapter Merit Award for outstanding professional achievement. Read more

Their current work at Penrose Market Garden/Village — adjacent to the State Fairgrounds — is supported by a Kresge Innovative Projects grant that demonstrates their mission.

Some of the leads who designed META Expo are Ken Weikel, Beth Hagenbuch and Mark Johnson.