As we begin 2024, several notable projects in Detroit are on pace for completion later this year and into early 2025: the Hudson’s Site, the Gordie Howe International Bridge, and the renovation of the Michigan Central Station.
While the progress of all three developments is being watched closely by residents from across Southeast Michigan, the re-development of the Michigan Central Station, one of Detroit’s most infamous relics, is not only receiving local attention, but international interest as well.
Originally built in 1914, the 18-story Beaux-arts-style building in Corktown served as the main train station for Detroit, until rail service at the facility ended in 1988 and the building was closed.
Since then, it has sat in decay, while in full view of travelers crossing the Ambassador Bridge from Windsor. Urban explorers maintained a presence at the site for the decades that followed, chronicling in pictures as the building rotted in place. Several different renovation, restoration, and repurposing plans surfaced over the years for the building, but none of those plans made it very far.
In 2018, the Ford Motor Company purchased the station, along with some of the surrounding buildings, with plans to fully restore the area, and make Michigan Central the hub of Ford’s autonomous vehicle operations. The long-term belief is that Ford will create an innovation corridor down Michigan Avenue, linking the Corktown Campus and their headquarters in Dearborn.
The cost of the project could end up north of $800M when everything is said and done.
As usual, our interest lies in the residential component of this project – and yes there will be one!
Initially, it was rumored that the top two floors would be used for residential space when the plans were announced; then they pivoted away from that and said a hotel would be the more likely option.
Earlier in 2023, Bill Ford Jr. said they go back and forth between the two options, but nothing has been decided yet.
So, we wait.
Real estate values in Corktown have climbed over the past decade, with the prices soaring after Ford announced the purchase. Limited residential space in Corktown has helped to fuel brisk sales in recent new developments in the area, so carving out a residential component from this massive structure would certainly make sense.
Many of the new developments currently in process or projected in the areas in and around downtown, midtown, and Corktown will be rentals, so for-sale condos in the Michigan Central Station would be a bonus.
We will continue to update our Michigan Central Station blog post, as more information is released – so check back, or sign up for our monthly newsletter where updates will be provided, as well as ongoing updates regarding the Metro Detroit new home market in general.
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MICHIGAN CENTRAL STATION CURRENT PHOTOS
Photo credit: JCPhotography_mi
Photo credit: Corbin_Dallas550
Photo credit: Axios
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