DTE to develop $75M project on Ann Arbor's riverfront

By Meredith Bruckner - Community News Producer

View from the river at Broadway (Credit: PRNewsfoto/DTE Energy)

ANN ARBOR - DTE Energy announced plans to develop 11 acres of mixed-use and public space at Broadway Street along the Huron River in partnership with The Roxbury Group, a Detroit-based real estate development company.

The vacant property used to be an industrial site that housed the Michigan Consolidated Gas Co.

Named after its location, the new "Broadway Park" is expected to bring up to $75 million of investment to the unused site. Developers say they hope to unlock considerable public access to the riverfront and will draw on the historic heritage of the site.

What to expect

More than 80 percent of the parcel will be transformed into green infrastructure and open space, including the restoration of roughly 1,200 feet of Huron River shoreline. 

The development will also feature up to 100 residential condominiums, a boutique hotel with up to 20,000 square feet of retail space, an upscale restaurant facing the river and an 8,000-square-foot event pavilion with year-round access.

"Our development agreement with Roxbury Group is the result of DTE Energy's commitment to developing this site in a way that highlights the natural beauty of the riverfront while preserving much of the land for the public's enjoyment," Gerry Anderson, DTE Energy chairman and chief executive officer, said in a press release. "Broadway Park is designed to be an iconic development and public space that further solidifies Ann Arbor's reputation as one of the state's premier communities."

DTE and the Roxbury Group have been working closely together on the design of the project, and hope to make a world-class public space the highlight of Broadway Park. They are consulting with a variety of professionals, including Ann Arbor's SmithGroup/JJR, SME Consultants out of Plymouth, Michigan, and Detroit-based Hamilton Anderson Associates Architects.

The New York-based Project for Public Spaces has also been assisting in the development and design of the centerpiece public space. PPS will be running a number of community outreach sessions to gather input from residents to help guide the development and design process.

Construction is expected to begin toward the end of 2018, when Roxbury Group hopes to obtain the necessary permits to break ground on the project.

"We are excited that, in addition to the residential and commercial development, Broadway Park will provide residents with an activated public space connecting to the surrounding parks and trails along the Huron River," Howard Lazarus, Ann Arbor city administrator, said in a press release. "We believe the Broadway Park public space will be a significant benefit to Ann Arbor, as it will be located facing the Huron River, across from the Argo Cascade white water feature." 

The project will bring a new life to the site, which was originally a coal-gasification facility and later served as a service center for the Michigan Consolidated Gas Co. for more than a century. DTE Energy acquired the facility in 2001 through its merger with MCN Energy. After the deal closed, DTE demolished the remaining buildings in 2009. Since that time, the company has allotted significant resources to reclaiming the shoreline and to the environmental restoration of the site.

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