Former state psychiatric buildings in Northville Township to be demolished

$12M development plan includes new park

There is a plan to develop a new park at the old Northville Township psychiatric hospital.

NORTHVILLE TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Former state psychiatric buildings in Northville Township will be demolished to make room for a new park and outdoor recreational site.

“Now that they’re actually tearing it down it’s amazing to see all the little buildings that are still remaining,” Jennifer Morales-Rios said.

Jennifer Morales-Rios and her husband, Victor, said they’re happy to hear the news that the remaining buildings will be demolished.

“We hear that they’re going to make some type of park out there and it’ll be wonderful for our neighborhood and for something nice to go out instead of tearing down all the trees,” Jennifer Morales-Rios said.

A total of 11 buildings and several tunnels are still standing on the 332 acres of land. By next year, 96% of the property will be used as an active recreation site that hasn’t yet been outlined by township officials.

“There’s a series of tunnels that used to run underneath, so everyone wanted to come and explore. It was kind of harmful. It’s a building that’s about to come down. There was asbestos. It was basically some safety issues there,” Victor said.

The demolition is made possible by the sale of a $12 million bond, which was approved by the township board of trustees. The couple said it’s a great thing for their family because urban explorers would often intrude and take a look at the leftover buildings.

“I used to work nights and sometimes I’d come home and we’d see occasionally, cars parked in my lot and my neighbor’s -- and they’d be sneaking over. And it’s nice to not have to deal with that anymore,” Jennifer Morales-Rios said.

The leftover buildings will be clustered together in a 10-acre parcel. The rest of the area will be used for recreational and park purposes.

No money from the township’s general fund will be used for the project.

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About the Authors:

Victor Williams joined Local 4 News in October of 2019 after working for WOIO in Cleveland, OH, WLOX News in Biloxi, MS, and WBBJ in Jackson, TN. Victor developed a love for journalism after realizing he was a great speaker and writer at an early age.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.