In Detroit, Michigan, The District Detroit is becoming a revitalized destination in the heart of the city. It’s a dense neighborhood experience with a variety of redevelopment projects alongside major sports and entertainment venues.
Connecting downtown Detroit to growing nearby neighborhoods such as Midtown, Corktown and Brush Park, The District Detroit is having a dramatic economic impact on Detroit and is a driving catalyst of the city’s remarkable resurgence.
The District Detroit intends to deliver some $1.4 billion in new investment to Detroit including the new Little Caesars Arena, Mike Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University and Little Caesars world headquarters campus expansion. Additionally, new office, residential and retail spaces will continue to add momentum to Detroit’s amazing comeback for years to come.
“As a former employee of The District Detroit, it has been my great honor to see this great city on the comeback. As an Urban Studies adjunct professor at Wayne State University, I am happy that my revitalization predictions to my students back in 2011 are coming to fruition. As a longtime resident, I am grateful that Detroit survived the most catastrophic period in its history: bankruptcy,” says part-time Revitalization News reporter Robin West Smith, MA, MUP, PMP, who’s also an adjunct professor at Monroe County Community College.
Now, on April 30, 2018, Olympia Development of Michigan announced six new projects in The District Detroit, including the restoration of three vacant historic buildings and the construction of three new infill mixed-use buildings near Little Caesars Arena. These projects will launch Phase Two of development in The District Detroit while creating hundreds of new jobs.
This investment of nearly $200 million should bring even more office tenants, storefronts and density to the area while connecting the city’s thriving Central Business District to nearby neighborhoods. These projects will deliver over 400,000 square feet of office space and nearly 70,000 square feet of street-level retail space to neighborhood. Each building will feature new street-level retail.
“This new investment puts the focus on the redevelopment of historic buildings while bringing high-demand retail and office space that will contribute to Detroit’s economy,” said Christopher Ilitch, President and CEO of Ilitch Holdings, Inc.
Development in The District Detroit has already created more than 20,000 construction and construction-related jobs and more than 3,000 permanent jobs after the opening of Little Caesars Arena, two-thirds of which were filled by Detroiters. These projects will continue to grow the city’s economy and create new opportunities for Detroit and for Michigan.
Olympia Development of Michigan will pursue the federal, state and local tax credits and other incentives that are often necessary to make them economically viable. Initial architectural and engineering work, as well as leasing efforts, are already underway.
The three historic projects are:
- 2210 Park Ave. – The former Detroit Life Building, a 10-story historic office building built in 1922, would be transformed into 32,000 square feet of office space and 6,000 square feet of street-level retail space just north of Columbia Street. Detroit-based Kraemer Design Group has been selected to design this $17 million renovation.
- 1922 Cass Ave. – This six-story, Albert Kahn-designed historic building would be renovated into 66,000 square feet of office space and 8,000 square feet of street-level retail space. With roots dating back more than 100 years, the site once included a carriage and wagon shop and later, a machine and engine shop. Detroit-based Albert Kahn Associates has been selected to design this $23 million renovation.
- 2110 Park Ave. – The interior of this six-story historic building would be renovated into 47,000 square feet of office space and 10,000 square feet of street-level retail space. Detroit-based Kraemer Design Group has been selected to design this $25 million renovation.
The new-construction infill project include:
- 2715 Woodward Ave. – This proposed $65 million development between Little Caesars Arena and Mike Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University would include 110,000 square feet of office space and 17,000 square feet of street-level retail space.
- 111 Henry St. – This proposed $20 million mixed-use office, retail and parking development would be completed with 50,000 square feet of office space and 7,000 square feet of street-level retail space. It would continue to build on the success of Henry Street’s popular retail and restaurants. Previously designated as residential, this property is now envisioned as office space to meet surging demand for Class A office space in Detroit.
- 120 Henry St. – This proposed $48 million project would be developed adjacent to Chevrolet Plaza at the new Little Caesars Arena. The development includes 100,000 square feet of office space and 20,000 square feet of street-level retail space. Previously designated as residential, this property is now envisioned as office space to meet surging demand for Class A office space in Detroit.
Another redevelopment being considered for Phase Two include the historic Blenheim Building at 2218 Park Ave. It’s under early feasibility study for potential redevelopment into residential units over street-level retail space. Feasibility studies are also underway for additional hotel and entertainment developments, several of which will take the place of existing surface parking lots.
Planning, partnership and financing work continues for several previously announced residential historic renovations, including 110 Sproat St. (formerly the Eddystone), 150 Bagley Ave. (formerly the United Artists Building), 408 Temple St. (formerly the American Hotel) and 100 Temple St. (formerly the Alhambra). The District Detroit continues to pursue a 20% affordable housing goal.