By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor
In a continuing effort to save or repurpose a long list of blighted buildings across Detroit, the City and the Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority (DBRA) are looking for proposals for the adaptive reuse of a crumbling industrial property in the East Riverfront District.
The Request for Proposals (RFP) solicits statements of qualification and preliminary redevelopment proposals for the empty Stone Soap building, which encompasses three structures at 1450, 1460 and 1490 Franklin near the new Milliken State Park and the Detroit RiverWalk.
Built in three stages between 1907 and 1927, the Stone Soap building contains more than 83,000 square feet of vacant industrial space, according to PropertyShark. The western section at 1450 Franklin sits on 0.12 acres and encompasses 44,649 square feet; the middle building at 1460 Franklin is 14,036 square feet and sits on 0.27 acres; and the eastern section at 1490 Franklin sitting on 0.33 acres has 24,684 square feet.
According to the RFP, the Stone Soap building is adjacent to the Orleans Landing project, a 285-unit mixed-use development which will break ground this fall and is set for completion in 2016. The property’s location nearby this residential and retail development indicates that the Stone Soap building is most likely to be adaptively reused as a mixed-use or residential/retail development as well—but housing proposals are required to include an affordable component of at least 20 percent. Other concepts will be judged on their consistency with the East Riverfront District Plan and zoning in the area.
The adaptive reuse of the Stone Soap building will be part of the future redevelopment of the East Riverfront District which is located immediately east of Detroit’s Central Business District and encompasses approximately 350 acres. The City of Detroit selected Cooper Robertson Associates of New York City to conduct a multi-disciplinary district planning process for the East Riverfront District.
The DBRA will receive development proposals until August 31 at 3 p.m. A pre-bid meeting will take place at the offices of the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) at 500 Griswold St. on August 6 at 11 a.m., followed by a two-hour tour of the Stone Soap building at 12 p.m..
Images via the Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority