Battle Creek Mayor Dave Walters - fresh off his rallying of Battle Creek residents in his State of the City address on January 24 - continued his call for optimism during a visit to WBCK.

In his speech Tuesday morning at the Kool Center, Walters pointed to several things the region is working on, many of which have potential to turn a corner in 2017:

Heritage Tower Development

Walters said a recent briefing with Battle Creek Assistant City Manager Ted Dearing underscored that a proposed renovation of the Heritage Tower in downtown Battle Creek is progressing and has a better chance than ever for work to begin in 2017. The mayor said this, along with other ongoing downtown development efforts, will raise the stature of the city.

Missile Defense System

Walters said Battle Creek remains at the top of a list of three cities where a new missile defense system could be situated. The system has been discussed for some time, but progress on it has been minimal - at least publicly - over the last several months. The mayor said he is not sure yet if the Trump Administration will accelerate that progress.

Fort Custer Industrial Park

With Battle Creek Unlimited trying to make some parcels in the park "pad ready", Walters said new interest and development in the park is inevitable.

Asian Education Development

Walters tells WBCK South Korean and Chinese efforts to situate students in Battle Creek to attend Kellogg Community College and Western Michigan University has actually grown. He said a recent contingent visiting the city continued to be impressed and may grow their commitment to the region and its educational offerings.

Hear the mayor elaborate on his reasons for optimism, as well as his call on citizens to not only be optimistic, but also to call out those who promote negativity about Battle Creek. Just click the player below.

Hear The Richard Piet Show weekday mornings from 5:30-9 on WBCK.