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Historic David Mackenzie House on Wayne State University's campus moving

Mansion is 124 years old

DETROIT – Here is an interesting question: How do you pick up and move a 124 year old historic mansion?

The answer is, very carefully. On Monday, crews began to move the historic David Mackenzie House on Wayne State University's campus. 

"Everyone is paying attention, whether you are young, old, a man or woman. Everyone is watching its every move. It is quite interesting to see all the details,” said Glenn Maxwell. 

Crews started to move the mansion from its current location of Forest and Cass. Maxwell didn’t want to miss the historic moment. 

“It has been amazing to see the house move from ground level up to about 6 or 8 feet and then they started adding all of those high beams in there,” said Maxwell. 

Crews started moving the house off its structure, slowly and carefully. 

“This house is actually the house of David MacKenzie who was the first president of what would become Wayne State University, back in the early 1900s. It has a lot of history and a lot of emotional value to the university and to the neighbors and the community,” said Ashley Flintoff with Wayne State University. 

Flintoff said they are moving the David Mackenzie House to make space for the new $65 million Hilberry Gateway Performance Complex, that will include a new jazz center. 

It is a historic move. “We are very excited about what Wayne State is doing here in the neighborhood,” said Maxwell.


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