The Ford Motor Company has released a new plan for an innovation and mobility district in Corktown, Detroit’s oldest neighborhood. Designed by the Practice for Architecture and Urbanism (PAU), the "Michigan Central" plan involves a multiyear development that includes the restoration of the iconic Michigan Central Station. Gensler is reimagining the Book Depository building, while PAU is master planning the Michigan Central development as a whole. The vision is an open platform for startups and entrepreneurs to develop, test and launch new mobility solutions.
As the team explains, the 30-acre site plan, developed by lead architect and strategic planner Practice for Architecture and Urbanism, envisions a walkable community anchored by the train station. It will "prioritize the needs of residents and businesses, as well as the 5,000 employees who work there" to connect with the surrounding neighborhoods and city. Four buildings make up the development – Michigan Central Station, the Book Depository, Building West (a new construction to the west of the station), and The Factory, home to Ford’s autonomous vehicle business unit.
“This project is about preparing Ford for another century of innovation and success,” said Mary Culler, Ford’s Detroit development director and Ford Fund president. “At Michigan Central, we are taking a collaborative approach to innovation, including providing flexible work spaces that attract and engage the best minds to solve complex transportation and related challenges as we shape the future of mobility together.”
Work on the Book Depository and Bagley Parking Hub will begin in the first quarter of 2021, with both buildings expected to open in early 2022. Michigan Central Station is currently in the middle of phase two of the restoration. Ford is on track to complete the station by the end of 2022.
News via Gensler