Michigan Central Station could become 'beautiful gem' for Detroit once again

Ford Motor Company buys historic train station

DETROIT – The Michigan Central Station's history mirrors the city of Detroit's. 

When Detroit was second only to New York City in the 1920s, the train station was the true city hub. The likes of Bab Ruth would ride into the station for baseball games. 

When the city failed, the train station was stripped of its glory. It became so run down that you could see straight through it to Canada from I-96. 

It wasn't until October 2017 that a truly workable solution cropped up. Station owner Matthew Moroun decided he could not be the one to fix the historic building. He announced Monday the building was sold to Ford Motor Company. 

"The deal is complete. The future of the (train) depot is assured. The next steward of the building is the right one for its future," Moroun said during a morning news conference. "The depot will become a shining symbol of Detroit's success. The Ford Motor Company Blue Oval will adorn the building."

Moroun characterized Ford's plans for not only the train station but also the old "Book Building" as an enormous one, as a golden opportunity for the city and an example of the great American second chance. 

MORE: Ford to announce its plans for Detroit's Michigan Central Station on June 19

Alvia Floria and Richard Gonzalez live in the neighborhood. They say they never left because it's home. They always believed the train station would become a centerpiece again. They attended the news conference Monday because they could not resist. 

"Oh it gives everyone hope again in the neighborhood. Everyone is trying to bring the community back, but for this train station to come back it's going to be a beautiful gem back in the neighborhood," said Floria. 

READ: Matthew Moroun's statement on sale of Michigan Central Station

Ford already purchased property just around the corner from the train station. A news conference is scheduled for June 19 to unveil Ford's plans for the building.

About the Author: