Historic district designation would save apartments near Little Caesars Arena in Detroit

Detroit City Council to vote on issue Tuesday

DETROIT – If the Detroit City Council votes to designate the area near Cass Avenue and Henry Street a historic district, apartment buildings from the 1900s would be saved.

Olympia Development owns many of the buildings in the area, and some council members fear the buildings will be torn down to make room for parking lots and office space. If the area is a historic district, the apartments could only be renovated, not taken down.

"I don't think anything should be knocked down. I think it should be renovated," Sydney Suzmanski said.

Suzmanski has lived in the Berwin apartments since 1997 and he doesn't want to leave his home, especially because the neighborhood near Little Caesars Arena now looks so nice.

Historic preservationists agree.

“As the city said with its historic district study, this is one of the last intact apartment blocks in the Cass Corridor,” Mark Hall said.

There is no guarantee that if the buildings did receive historic designation and were renovated, their current residents could afford to live there

"I would really hate to see this building go because, for one, a lot of people who live here are on Social Security and have limited incomes," resident Brooks Harris said.

The City Council will decide Tuesday whether or not the area gets historic district designation.

UPDATE: Detroit City Council approves historic designation to save apartments near Little Caesars Arena

About the Authors: