Newly Renovated Federal Reserve Building to Become Home for Michigan’s Top Newspapers
By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor
The former Federal Reserve Building located at 160 W. Fort Street in the heart of downtown Detroit will soon welcome three new tenants, according to the Detroit News.
Citing a company-wide email sent by Detroit Media Partnership CEO Joyce Jenereaux, the source reports that the Detroit Free Press, The Detroit News and the media partnership plan to lease six full floors in the recently renovated historic building. Each newsroom will occupy its own floor of a little over 20,000 square feet, with the Free Press on the second and the News on the third. The Detroit Media Partnership and some undisclosed publications will lease the mezzanine and floors six to eight.
According to the quoted email, the newsrooms and the media partnership are expected to move into their new home by the end of September. It is unclear what will happen to the Albert Kahn-designed structure at 615 W. Lafayette Street, where the 141-year-old News has been headquartered since the grand opening in 1917.
The Detroit Media Partnership, which oversees business functions for both the Detroit News and the Free Press, has been looking for a new home for more than a year. According to an older news story by the Free Press, in early 2013 the media partnership announced plans to sell what was known as the “Detroit News Building” and relocate into more modern offices within the following 18 months even if a buyer was not found immediately.
Constructed in 1927 in a Classical Revival style, the structure at 160 W. Fort Street served as the Federal reserve Bank of Chicago Detroit Branch building until 2004 when the bank moved into new offices on Warren Avenue near Eastern Market. An eight-story glass and marble annex was added to the original four-story building during the 1949-1951 expansion.
In January 2012 the vacant asset was purchased by Dan Gilbert through his real estate arm Rock Ventures LLC, marking the billionaire’s ninth acquisition in Detroit. Shortly after changing hands, the 176,000-square-foot building embarked on a renovation and redesign process spearheaded by international architectural firm ROSSETTI—while the firm’s team of architects, planners and designers also relocated into 13,000 square feet on the fourth floor.
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