Plainwell is a city in Allegan County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 3,804 at the 2010 census. Plainwell is located on M-89 just east of its junction with US 131. The city of Otsego is about three miles (4.8 km) to the west. Kalamazoo is about ten miles (16 km) to the south and Grand Rapids about 35 miles (56 km) north. The Kalamazoo River flows through the center of the city. Plainwell is the birthplace of syndicated cartoonist Dave Coverly, creator of the Speed Bump comic strip, actor Ed Gale, famous for his role as Howard the Duck in the movie of the same name. Though it sounds somewhat common, there are no other communities named Plainwell anywhere in the United States. It is known as The Island City.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.06 square miles (5.34 km²), of which 1.98 square miles (5.13 km²) is land and 0.08 square miles (0.21 km²) is water. The nickname Island City has to do with a power canal which diverts a portion of the Kalamazoo River around the downtown area, causing it to be an island.
As of the census of 2010, there were 3,804 people, 1,561 households, and 966 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,921.2 inhabitants per square mile (741.8/km²). There were 1,674 housing units at an average density of 845.5 per square mile (326.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.0% White, 1.0% African American, 0.5% Native American, 0.4% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.6% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.3% of the population.
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