Midtown Development Spells Movement?
Ground has been broken, the rumbles have been heard– Midtown Detroit, on the heels of an impressive 95% residential occupancy rate, is getting its largest mixed residential-retail development. Ever. Yep.
I think the project alone, isolated, is interesting, very worthwhile and answering the call for demand that exists in the area for not only just housing, but serves as a crucial piece in creating a more walkable neighborhood. Not only will their be 58 residential units in the new development, there will also be 11 retail spaces.
Think about it. Avalon set up shop almost 14 years ago and has served as an anchor in the neighborhood creating the kind of cultural destination that goes far beyond just grabbing a loaf of bread. And beyond creating cultural capital, it laid the groundwork for other businesses to follow. What started with a bakery has spawned an organic foodstore, clothing boutiques, book stores, galleries, a modern homegoods shop and more– constructing much of Midtown’s current identity.
With 11 more shops going in, or at least being available, it could really create an organic force that expands the anchor that Avalon began years ago. I am sure at this point it is unknown what sorts of shops will go in the development, but if carefully chosen, it could really expand the area with some homegrown, useful businesses– maybe the bagel brothers can go there, or perhaps the new Hatch Detroit-funded business (or if not the funded one, perhaps some of the runner-ups that didnt get the big startup check) can call this new development home.
With Detroit having isolated pockets of brilliance all over the city limits, this development gets me excited if only over the prospect that those pockets engaging a little more with one another to create a real vibrant part of town seems a likely possibility.