Hockey Haven

The new $650 million Red Wings arena and entertainment district vows to dazzle Detroit.


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(page 5 of 6)

“They put (the stadium) in a dense area that was down on its luck,” Bieri says. “The stadium is now probably four or five blocks from where the action is, and they’re trying to close that gap. The Ilitches spent a lot of time trying to create an event center that would integrate with the community and be more than just a place for events, and at the same time they could really create a major change to many acres. It’s pretty unique.”

One piece of spinoff development is basically guaranteed — a new corporate headquarters building for Little Caesars, on Woodward between the Fox Theatre and the Fillmore, directly across from Comerica Park. The location is part of District Detroit.

The street sign says Woodward, but as far as Marquardt is concerned, when looking at the original urban design that helped to create the city, it might as well be Detroit’s Main Street.

“It’s a spoke-and-hub system that started right up the street, so this is really Main Street,” Marquardt says.

Early in the process, as Olympia sought approvals for rezoning and tax-increment financing via the Downtown Development Authority, it was clear that political leaders in the city wanted to see Olympia put a premium on hiring city residents and awarding contracts to city workers. According to Doug Diggs, president and CEO of the economic development consulting firm Diggs Group, and a partner on the project, Olympia’s outreach to city-based workers and contractors has achieved solid results. 

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