Demolition of Detroit’s iconic Packard plant begins

The city of Detroit has started demolition on a portion of the iconic -- and infamous -- Packard plant, after years of court hearings and deadlines.

DETROIT – The city of Detroit has started demolition on a portion of the iconic -- and infamous -- Packard plant, after years of court hearings and deadlines.

The city started demolition on a portion of the plant they say is threatening the safety of nearby residents and businesses. “The structure is adjacent to an operating business (Display Group), and creates an imminent danger to that building, its employees, and neighborhood residents,” the city said.

Property owner Fernando Palazuelo had until April 21 to pull permits for the demolition of his portions of the plant. He missed that deadline. Earlier this year, a judge ordered Palazuelo to demolish the plant, claiming the deteriorating property has become a public nuisance.

Built in the early 1900s, the Packard plant was designed by Albert Kahn. The company became a dominant luxury carmaker in the United States in the late 1920s, and by the 1940s had 36,000 employees. The last auto was made there in the mid- to late-1950s and the various buildings eventually were used as warehouses, other manufacturing and small industrial projects.

The city claimed the bulk of the Packard property in 1994 after former owners failed to pay back taxes. Over time, the site became one of the most blighted areas in the city as tires, thousands of shoes, old televisions and other trash was illegally dumped in and around the various buildings.

Palazuelo bought the Packard property in 2013 for $405,000 at a Wayne County tax foreclosure auction. He said then that his plans were to restore and reopen the 40-acre complex as a mixed-use commercial, residential and cultural development. That obviously never happened.

The city of Detroit has started demolition on a portion of the iconic -- and infamous -- Packard plant, after years of court hearings and deadlines. READ: https://www.clickondetroit.com/news/local/2022/09/29/demolition-of-detroits-iconic-packard-plant-begins/

About the Author:

Ken Haddad is the digital content and audience manager for WDIV / ClickOnDetroit.com. He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013. He enjoys suffering through Lions games on Sundays in the fall.